2.5 Vs 2.8 & 323 Vs 328...much Difference ??? - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
3-Series (E46, E90) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1999 to Current. Models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318Ci, BMW 320i, BMW 323i, BMW 325i, BMW 330i, BMW 328 Ci, BMW 328i, BMW 325i/xi, BMW 330Ci, BMW 320d, BMW 330d, BMW 335d.

 
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#1 (permalink) Old 04-20-2005, 09:46 PM
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I am looking at either a 1999, 2000 or 2001 323 or 328. Is there a great deal of difference between the two other than the motor ( 2.5 vs 2.8).............I am mostly concerened with longevity, quality and reliability. Is one model more reliable than the other. Is one motor reliable or better than the other ???

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated
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#2 (permalink) Old 04-21-2005, 12:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by dallyd31@Apr 20 2005, 07:46 PM
I am looking at either a 1999, 2000 or 2001 323 or 328. Is there a great deal of difference between the two other than the motor ( 2.5 vs 2.8).............I am mostly concerened with longevity, quality and reliability. Is one model more reliable than the other. Is one motor reliable or better than the other ???

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated
[snapback]335762[/snapback]
Couple of things - the 323 & 328 were offered in 99 & 00 only. In 2001, the 323 was replaced with the 325, the 328 was replaced with the 330.

Both the 323 & 325 have 2.5L engines, but they are a little different. The 323 & 328's have the M52TU engine, the 01 + models have the M54. They are quite similar, I believe the intake manifold is a bit different, but I'm not sure on all the differences. I don't know that one is more reliable than the other however.

They differ in HP & TQ output:
323 - 2.5L 170 HP/181 TQ
325 - 2.5L 184 HP/175 TQ
328 - 2.8L 193 HP/206 TQ
330 - 3.0L 225 HP/214 TQ

All of them are inline 6's. The M52TU engine respond better to mods if that's your thing, and the 99-00 models also have the old cable throttle, whereas the 01+ models have drive by wire, which often comes under criticism.

Also, if you want a coupe or convertible E46, '00 is the first year. '99 was sedans only for the E46.
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#3 (permalink) Old 04-22-2005, 07:57 PM
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The 328 has a lot more torque than the 325 but the extra torque is most noticeable below 2500 rpm. Above 4000 rpm they feel different but actually accelerate at about the same rate. In other words the 328 in a manual is much easier to drive smoothly than the 325, or to explain the same issue a little differently, the 325 takes more practice to drive smoothly, especially in 1st and 2nd gears. The zero to 62mph times with manual trans are within .1 second of each other. The 325 is about 50 pounds lighter than the 328 because of various parts-changes, mostly in the differential, which is smaller and lighter in the 325.
I recently bought a 2001 325i recently and test drove 323's, 328's and 325's from 1999 to 2001 model years.
The 323 is about a second slower in the zero to 62 mph category if I recall correctly but is still a fine car.
Get a manual trans in any event. The automatics are like a second slower than the manual trans for the zero to 62 mph in all these cars.
The 325 doesn't have the crummy viscous cooling fan combined with pusher electric fan either. That is the only bad-engineering issue that I have with the 328's and 323's. Just my own take on it. Both methods serve the purpose for which they are intended, but I see a viscous fan connected to the front of the engine and I see about 3-5 horsepower being consumed by a non-electric fan.
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#4 (permalink) Old 04-25-2005, 10:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Tom Busby@Apr 22 2005, 05:57 PM
The 328 has a lot more torque than the 325 but the extra torque is most noticeable below 2500 rpm. Above 4000 rpm they feel different but actually accelerate at about the same rate. In other words the 328 in a manual is much easier to drive smoothly than the 325, or to explain the same issue a little differently, the 325 takes more practice to drive smoothly, especially in 1st and 2nd gears. The zero to 62mph times with manual trans are within .1 second of each other. The 325 is about 50 pounds lighter than the 328 because of various parts-changes, mostly in the differential, which is smaller and lighter in the 325.
I recently bought a 2001 325i recently and test drove 323's, 328's and 325's from 1999 to 2001 model years.
The 323 is about a second slower in the zero to 62 mph category if I recall correctly but is still a fine car.
Get a manual trans in any event. The automatics are like a second slower than the manual trans for the zero to 62 mph in all these cars.
The 325 doesn't have the crummy viscous cooling fan combined with pusher electric fan either. That is the only bad-engineering issue that I have with the 328's and 323's. Just my own take on it. Both methods serve the purpose for which they are intended, but I see a viscous fan connected to the front of the engine and I see about 3-5 horsepower being consumed by a non-electric fan.
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As far as reliability I can only speak for my self, but when it comes to the engine I can say that I bought the 99' 323 new in Germany and now it has 175k mi on it and the only thing I had to replace outside of reg maint was the cam position sensor. I thought that was pretty damn good!
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#5 (permalink) Old 04-25-2005, 12:31 PM
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All fine cars in their own right. The only real difference is the acceleration. If you want the extra bit of pull when accelerating go with the 328 .. but the 325 and 323 are not much different really.
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#6 (permalink) Old 04-26-2005, 10:12 AM
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I loves me my 2000 328i. Depending on the mileage and the maintenance history, these years of cars have a tendency to see the camshaft position sensor and the secondary air pump fail ($100 and $300 respectively for parts). My 328i can take my g/fs 2004 Mazda 6s and I'm about 30 hp down.

If the used car was kept well, you'll be pleased. My radio reception sucks... buy satellite or an MP3 player.

Your Lane ------>
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#7 (permalink) Old 04-26-2005, 11:14 AM
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The 323 will give you about 1 mpg more than the 328. The 328 accelerates to 60 about the same as the 323. The difference comes when you are going along at 60-80mph and put your foot down the 328 takes off the 323 does not, it requires you to gear down. Gear down in a 328 and you really feel it!
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#8 (permalink) Old 04-26-2005, 10:30 PM
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I looked up the torque and hp curve-data on the new 325 (M54B25 engine) to compare it to the older 323 (M52B25 engine). The picture tells the story. I am stuck with words, which are here:

The torque curves start at the the same number at 1000rpm, then the 325 is up by 20Nm at 1500rpm, then the torque curves are identical from 2200 rpm to 4400 rpm, and at 4400 rpm to 6000 rpm the 325 is up by about 10 Nm.

The hp curve on the 325 is up by about 2 hp from 1000 rpm to 4500 rpm, then the 325 stays nearly linear while the 323 flattens out somewhat to peak at 168 (EU) hp at 5500 rpm and then begins to drop off, while the 325 peaks at 192 (EU) hp at 6000 rpm and then begins to drop off.

So the 325 has about a 18 ft.lb. advantage at 1500 rpm, and about 9 ft/lb/ advantage from 4400 rpm to redline. The hp advantage, about 32 (US) hp, is substantial at the 5500 to 6000 rpm range but not much time is spent so close to the redline.

This is a smaller numerical difference than I would have expected, but consistent with my thoughts when I drove the 323, that it was a fine car too.

The 325 has a double VANOS that makes its torque and hp curves nearly linear. Aside from info-maniacs like me actually wanting to know the answer, it is meaningful that BMW would spend its cash to develop a neat modification like the double VANOS.
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#9 (permalink) Old 04-28-2005, 07:35 AM
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tom:

magnificent info. somewhat surprising though, cos i seem to remember that 23 was noticeably slower in my hands than 25. numbers don't bear it out.

comments?
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#10 (permalink) Old 04-28-2005, 08:09 PM
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All I can think of is that the 323 weighs more or has different gearing. I agree it does feel more different from the 325 than the numbers indicate.

I believe the 323 weighs a little more, but only about 50 pounds heavier due to the 325 having a smaller differential and a few modifications reducing the weight of the transmission. 100 pounds is more a less a tenth of a second in the quarter mile so 50 pounds could only account for .05 seconds, which is very little.

Numerically lower drive ratios would make any car slower but I think the 323 and 325 have identical gear ratios in the differential and the transmission.

The two 323's that I recently test drove had 17" wheels and tires, which are heavier by about 5-10 pounds per wheel/tire combo than 16" wheel/tire, which should make these 323's feel less responsive in corners.

When you test drive a car that is more than 4-5 years old proper maintenance becomes more of an issue, and I think the primary reason for the seat of the pants difference is because I wasn't comparing apples to apples in my test drives.
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