I'm in the market for a BMW! - 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 08-04-2010, 10:26 PM
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I'm in the market for a BMW!

Well I'm getting old and tired of racing and modifying Hondas, which I've been doing for a while. I'm currently looking for a nice 00-05 330c. I've driven 328's but never the 330 and I've heard and read that it's the closest you can get to an M3, of course, not too close but I'm planning to keep it for a couple of years while I get an M3 and have fun with it, maybe do a couple of mods to make it more sportier.
Anyways, I've also read that BMW's are't very reliable and would like to know what to look for when test driving one? I know what to look for on other cars but are there any key signs on BMW's? What's high mileage on a BMW?
I'm more familiar with Hondas and Nissans and those cars are capable getting to over 250,000 miles with good maintenance but I don't know what to expect out of a BMW, thanks in advance!
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#2 (permalink) Old 08-04-2010, 10:32 PM
OMFG another one!?
 
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Always ask for complete service records.

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#3 (permalink) Old 08-04-2010, 10:35 PM
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Yeah that's a good idea, thanks.
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#4 (permalink) Old 08-04-2010, 10:36 PM
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By the way I'm planning on doing all the future services myself, I'm mechanical oriented, I've been working on cars for a while.
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#5 (permalink) Old 08-04-2010, 11:09 PM
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I suggest getting a Bentley manual if you are going to be doing everything on your own. Services probably wont be a problem for you if you take time to get used to the car, but there are some things that you will need help on if you never worked with this kind of machine. As for reliability, they aren't as reliable as a Honda in some ways, but they are way more fun and rewarding, in my opinion at least. They are not bad when it comes to reliability if it has been well maintained, how ever if it is a third owner car and the third had it for 10 years and was a 26 year old, I would say in general that if there aren't complete service records it probably wasn't well maintained. That being said complete service records are a great way to bring you some security. Mileage- my 1997 528i has 200,400 or so miles and is going strong as can be. If you service and maintain a BMW its whole life you should get at least 300,000 miles out of it. Bad thing is you can't always be sure how a used car you are buying has been kept up or how hard it has been driven.

Best of luck in your search for a 330Ci. I'm sure you will be pleased with it if you find a good one.

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#6 (permalink) Old 08-05-2010, 01:11 AM
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Originally Posted by meanshyguy View Post
Well I'm getting old and tired of racing and modifying Hondas, which I've been doing for a while. I'm currently looking for a nice 00-05 330c. I've driven 328's but never the 330 and I've heard and read that it's the closest you can get to an M3, of course, not too close but I'm planning to keep it for a couple of years while I get an M3 and have fun with it, maybe do a couple of mods to make it more sportier.
There's not a huge difference between the 328's and the 330's. Depending on what you're looking for I can tell you the M52 motor is pretty bulletproof and the M54 motor in the 330i is also very good. The 330 is as close as you can get to an M3 but you're still down 100+ horsepower.

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Anyways, I've also read that BMW's are't very reliable and would like to know what to look for when test driving one? I know what to look for on other cars but are there any key signs on BMW's? What's high mileage on a BMW?
I'm more familiar with Hondas and Nissans and those cars are capable getting to over 250,000 miles with good maintenance but I don't know what to expect out of a BMW, thanks in advance!
I don't know where you read that BMW's are unreliable but I find that statement to be unfair. I've had a 2000 528i for 7 years and the worst thing I've experienced was a blown valve cover gasket (which is to be expected after 9 years of use). I'm currently sitting at 94,000 miles and it's running very strong. There is a stigma for some reason that European cars are unreliable but like I said, I find that to be untrue. In some situations parts are more expensive than perhaps a Japanese car, and some maintenance is a little more labor intensive but one thing I can say about BMW's is there are no timing belts and that's a great thing.

If you decide to buy a BMW just make sure the car has full maintenance records. I would do this with any car anyway because I want to make sure that the car was maintained properly. With my experience I can tell you that as long as you get regular oil changes you are more than likely going to find that these cars are built very strong. There's no reason why you can't expect 200K-250K miles out of a BMW.

I also find that a lot of people that complain about BMW's (or cars in general) don't know anything about cars at all. They will complain about the smallest things regardless of the car and unfortunately a lot of the things they complain about are from their own doing. I think BMW's are just as reliable as any other car on road to be honest.
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#7 (permalink) Old 08-05-2010, 10:13 PM
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No timing belts? I have to learn a lot about these cars.
Thanks for all the advise it's very helpful, I'll make sure I get a good car with records and make it last, thank you very much guys.
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#8 (permalink) Old 08-05-2010, 10:31 PM
OMFG another one!?
 
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Later engines have timing chains.

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#9 (permalink) Old 08-05-2010, 10:57 PM
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Later engines have timing chains.
The car he is looking at definitely does not have a timing belt...I'd thought I'd throw it in as I know it's a common maintenance issue on Honda's and it's something that I would consider to be an annoyance.
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#10 (permalink) Old 08-08-2010, 12:51 PM
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The K series engines on Honda and Acura cars now have timing chains, which is a sign that belts weren't a very good idea, I don't like the idea of belts either, anyways, I'm looking at some reputable dealers for that 330c that I want, they provide maintenance records and to my surprise, most of the car I've seen are in almost perfect condition.
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#11 (permalink) Old 08-19-2010, 07:58 AM
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Yes, chains prooved to be better than belts. A firnd of mine works in Munich for BMW and his collegues consider a 330xd to be a success and also X3 of a second generation. So, I'd rather recommend them aswell
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