Last post on Mar 20, 2009 at 12:43 PM
You are in the BMW 3-Series
What is this discussion about?
BMW 3 Series, Lights, Sedan
#7 of 8 Re: Option Choices; BMW 328i sedan. [msimon]
Mar 17, 2008 (11:46 am)
I drive a 2007 328xi with xenons. I am 45, have good night vision and frankly don't find much advantage over my wife's Honda minivan. The light is definitely whiter and perhaps more intense directly in front of the car but even with high beams doesn't reach much further down the road. The low beam setting is frankly annoying because the illuminated area has a VERY sharp cut off. What this means is that the area directly in front of the car is very brightly lit but the beam is so sharply focused that anything just beyond the area illuminated is totally dark. Additionally, with the xenon package the headlights turn with the steering wheel. This feature can be turned on or off. Sounded great when I bought the car but In practice doesn't seem to make much difference. With that said I have a close friend who is very nearsighted and suffers from higher order abberations especially at night. He is totally convinced that the xenons ar worth every penny and says he won't drive his SUV with regular halogens at night.
One other thing to consider is the cost of replacement. A regular halogen bulb is less than $10 each. My dealer tells me that xenons installed are about $150 each. Oh yea, don't forget about the ignighters on each side that also periodically need replacement. These apparently cost about $200(?) per side.
Personally, unless you have poor night vision I would save the $800 cost of this option. On paper it sounds great but in reality is only modestly better than BMW's good standard halogen lamps.
#8 of 8 E46: CHRONIC Taillight, brake light, turn signal problems
Mar 20, 2009 (12:43 pm)
Here's the TSB for the infamous problems with the BMW 3 Series rear lighting:
Despite problems with so many cars under warranty, BMW isn't pushing for a recall, prefering instead to allow their stealers to charge upwards of $400 to rewire the rear light connectors. Unfortunately, that's illegal as the lighting system is required by law, and when they fail in large numbers (which they have) they're supposed to initiate a recall. Looks like someone at BMW wasn't paying attention in their Ethics and Morals class . . .
In the meanwhile, please help by giving a short summary of your E46 lighting problem here:
You can also report a vehicle safety issue to NHTSA online at our vehicle safety Web site: www.safercar.gov. Select “File a Complaint” within the Defects and Recalls section of the home page. The information you submit via the Web site is recorded in VOQ format, entered into our consumer complaint database, and provided to our technical staff for evaluation.
When you fill out a VOQ online, you will be given the option of checking a box to authorize or not authorize the release of your personal identifiers to the manufacturer of the alleged defective product you own. Again, while you are not required to provide such authorization, doing so can sometimes help facilitate the recall process.
To report a safety complaint to NHTSA by mail, send your letter to:
U.S. Department of Transportation
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Office of Defects Investigation (NVS-210)
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20590
A written letter is probably best. Write the words "Petition for formal investigation" in your letter and include any receipts you may have.