Last post on Feb 07, 2011 at 5:21 PM
You are in the BMW 3-Series
What is this discussion about?
BMW 3 Series
Oct 04, 2007 (3:38 am)
"The M5 with SMG still greatly outsells, and outperforms the 6-speed at all levels."
What propaganda have you been brainwashed by? The SMG in the E60 M5 is terrible. So bad, in fact, that it was U.S. enthusiasts that embarassed BMW into hastily developing a 6-speed manual version. I own a 2003 E39 M5 with nearly 50,000 miles and BMW could not get me to take a brand new E60 M5 SMG on an even trade. The high revving V10 engine is fantastic, the SMG transmission a complete embarassment to anyone that knows how to drive.
"I can seamelessly trasition into whatever gear I please. Whether it be in anticipation of an upcoming apex which leads into a sweeping turn, or the early stage of passing a tractor-trailer, I fail to see the downside.... If you enjoy stepping on a clutch, great, but realize that the performance gap that you percieve exist only in your mind."
If you "perceive" that you can do all that and that BMW's steptronic torque-converter automatic is as good as their 6-speed short throw manual, you have a far, far more creative imagination than habitat. Or a much lower standard of performance. Either way, that's just plain B.S.
Don't take my word for it. Take your automatic 335i to the BMW performance driving school and see how far behind a 6-speed you will be around a lap. If you can bribe them to let you on the track.
#1056 of 1398 Re: habitat [Mr_Shiftright]
Oct 04, 2007 (4:03 am)
"I don't like big sedans with stickshift. I find them annoying (sorry, that's just the way it is with me"
I'm not sure at what point you think "rowing" becomes annoying, but the E39 M5 vs. 3 series size distinction is a dubious one, at best. My 2003 E39 V8 M5 weighs less than 10% more than my nephew's 335i and 5% more than a 335ix. All of which weigh substantially less than a 2-seat SL55. the interior dimensional differences between an E39 M5 and current 3 series is nominal, at best. The number of so-called "sport" or "GT" vehicles that weigh as much or more than my M5 is appalling. And the 3-series has put on about 1,000 lbs since the first M3 debuted. Frankly, the fact that my M5 has a 6-speed manual makes it feel MORE nimble around town, and is certainly not a chore to drive.
A business associate of mine picked up an E55 a month after I got my M5, for an intial price of about $5,000 more. After 4+ years and nearly 50,000 miles, my M5 is would resell for at least $7-10,000 more than his E55 with 32k miles. There are a lot more people out there that are "enthusiastic" about a manual transmission only E39 M5 than an automatic only E55.
Being that my company holds dozens of patents and has helped pioneer state of the art microjet technology, I am hardly adverse to positive, performance enhancing engeering advances. I embrace them. But let's be clear, BMW's SMG doesn't make the grade. And their automatics don't come close. Convenience, maybe. Performance, absolutely not. Ferrari has the best SMG on the market, Porsche is working on what will likely be the best DSG. If BMW can get it's act together, perhaps they will produce something that will get me to give up the third pedal. But they certainly don't have anything today that fits that bill.
#1057 of 1398 Re: habitat [spiritinthesky]
Oct 04, 2007 (7:02 am)
>"Take your automatic 335i to the BMW performance driving school and see how far behind a 6-speed you will be around a lap. If you can bribe them to let you on the track."
All they use is automatics, at least for the two day performance school. They said that they ended up replacing too many clutches, so they have been 100% auto for quite a while.
So - no bribes needed.
Oct 04, 2007 (7:48 am)
I wonder how this tranny will perform?
The IS-F is based on the rear-wheel-drive Lexus IS, which is equipped with a double-wishbone front and multi-link rear suspension. The IS-F engine is mated to the world’s first eight-speed "direct sport-shift" transmission. A new torque-converter lock-up control was developed that allows for a direct, crisp gear change through the constant lock-up of the torque converter in second through eighth gears.
In Drive mode, the IS-F transmission performs smoothly, and the torque converter allows for quick 0-60 acceleration in less than 4.9 seconds. The transmission also features a manual mode operated via a pair of paddles. Downshifts are accompanied by automated throttle blips to match engine RPM to vehicle speed. Heavy-duty Brembo brakes with 14.2-inch discs and six-piston calipers ensure all the power is kept under control. The IS-F features custom-designed 19-inch forged alloy wheels — with 225/40R19 sized rubber up front and 255/35R19 at the rear — as standard.
Lexus claims the IS-F can hit a top speed of over 185 mph but the Japanese-spec IS-F will be electronically limited to about 110 mph. Lexus failed to address why the IS-F is limited to such a low speed as the car will undoubtedly be able to hit that speed in the 1/4 mile.
Seems to me the future "sports" cars will receive AT's that are progressivley more competent. Chevy is working on a 2-clutcher for the 2012 'Vette.
#1059 of 1398 mt vs at
Oct 04, 2007 (8:15 am)
Exhibit A: Regarding the 335i Coupe with AT
"Maybe BMW got bored of hearing the same thing over and over again, because suddenly we had to come up with new words to describe the 3: controversially styled, technologically overwrought, and now this: quicker with the automatic.
Fantastic as an Automatic
Yes, the 335i’s ZF-sourced six-speed automatic is among the world’s very best transmissions, and we can’t heap enough praise on it. Responsive and quick to act, it is the perfect autobox for this kind of car. In normal automatic mode, shifts are virtually invisible, but the character changes dramatically when prompted. Deputy editor Dave VanderWerp says, “Full-throttle downshifts are quite severe, but to me, that’s fine when I’m pushing the pedal all the way to the floor. The automatic generally does a single multigear kickdown instead of stopping off at other ratios along the way.” We also noted snappy rev-matching throttle blips when downshifting using the manumatic function (or paddles), and in the sport-shift mode, it eagerly takes the liberty of automatically downshifting during braking to set you higher in the meat of the power band whenever your right foot returns to the other pedal."
Exhibit B: Regarding the 6speed M5
"Would you be surprised to hear that this doesn’t have a positive effect on acceleration? Or lap times on the Streets of Willow? Or making a hot exit from a slow corner? Of course you wouldn’t. Because that’s precisely what happens. This M5 was a half-second slower to 60 mph than the SMG version we tested in January 2006 — 4.7 versus 4.2 — and a half-second slower through the quarter-mile: 13.0 seconds at 114 mph versus 12.5 at 118. DSC also inhibited lane-change performance (60.8 mph versus 65.6) and skidpad results (0.83 lateral g versus 0.89)."
Both articles seem to refute the claim that MTs significantly outperform ATs, and with the rapidity of technological evolution, how far out can the virtual extinction of the third pedal be. I have yet to try the audi dsg, however, I have a feeling that it may speed the inevitable demise of MTs in performance vehicles.
#1060 of 1398 Re: auto [dan12]
Oct 05, 2007 (9:52 am)
It's interesting to see that one's ability to drive a car w/ manual transmission becomes a "status symbol" here in the US. Where I was born (and learned to drive) most cars had manual transmission, no exception. Honda was the first one to try marketing AT there in the 1975. Didn't sell very well for some reason. A friend of mine's mom bought one, and ended up hitting the car in front of her because she revved up the engine like a manual while waiting at a traffic light
Things have changed in the past 5 years, many offers auto as an option - a complete reverse of what we have here.
I drove my first automatic when I moved to the US some years ago. While I like manual better for certain reasons, I enjoy AT for convenience. An SMG would be ideal, but Steptronic will do...
Oct 07, 2007 (4:02 pm)
dan 12 you said you bought the sport susp.3 over the "plain" driving non-sprt 3. I am in the same boat. I had a sprt 3 330 and I thought it drove a little rough and was a little noisy. How does the 335 sprt. and non sprt. compare? Do you like luxury or do you in general like "go karts"? I would like this for an everyday cruiser. Does the non sprt feel sporty at all? Does it wallow in the turns or does it handle good. Does it live up to the "sport sedan" legend at all? Thanks
#1062 of 1398 Re: auto [richardga73]
Oct 07, 2007 (9:06 pm)
I think the non SP 335 is still a really nice car. If you don't need the extra handling edge of the SP, then the non-SP will be smoother. The thing that I would really miss without the SP are the front seats. I do think they are a lot more comfortable. You can try them out at a dealership without even test driving the car; you will see what I mean.
I actually like luxury and really good handling, it just depends on the car. In the case of the 3, I decided to go for the go-kart feel. It's super smooth on good roads, but does get bumpy when the roads are in bad shape. Since you had the 330 SP, you will know exactly what I mean.
Oct 08, 2007 (7:36 am)
Yeah, Dan, I know what you mean. The sport seats are in the 3 and the best seats I have ever sat in. The power lumbar is incredible. It is so disappointing that you cant get the spt. seats in the 3 without the spt suspension. In the 5 you can get the spt. seats alone without the spt suspension. I wish they would do that on the 3, their best selling car.
#1064 of 1398 Re: auto [richardga73]
Oct 09, 2007 (5:20 am)
Well, in the 5 they're actually called Comfort Seats and were an option with the Premium Package, IIRC, but you could also get order them with the SP. I don't think the 5 had any actual "sport" seats. For '07/'08, the Comfort Seats became an included part of the SP.