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I live in a city of about 100K and car theft rates are higher here than places like San Jose, or St. Louis. Most cars stolen are integras and civics but I dont want to take any chances. I just purchased my first E36. It is a 92 but is in 98+ condition, and I want to keep it that way. My car is equiped with the OEM alarm/keyless entry. How efficient is this setup. Does anyone know if the alarm has an ignition kill switch if the ignition wires are cut? Also with my GSR I was thinking of making a hidden switch that is connected to the fuel pump wiring. Has anyone done this with their BMW? What alarm is better than the OEM? Has anyone had bad luck with the OEM alarm?
 

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The OEM alarm is fine.

Even without the alarm, factory secruity features include, double locking (disables plunger so if the window is broken a theif cant just pull up to unlock) and ignition disabling. I think it also shuts off fuel flow, but Im not sure. The only advantage of upgrading would be to obtain a code rolling device.
 

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I owe an alrm shop and one thing i can tell you there nothing better than a viper alarm and also factory alarm is not really an alarm its just a keyless entry so you should defenly get an aftermanrket system.
 

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The factory BMW alarm:
has some code rolling depending on year
keyless entry
dead locks doors
arms hood, trunk, glass, and door
disables fuel depending on year
 

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Ya gotta do the business case and take into consideration your risk tolerance. I assume you have insurance...so a simple answer is don't worry about it cause the insurance will replace it. Then add to that the liklihood of your car being stolen (even in a higher theft rate city, it's gotta be less than 1%). Throw in the cost of a viper alarm install ($600?, I don't know...but for discussion purposes).

It's kinda the same formula people go through in California as to whether or not they want to buy earthquake insurance. There's no wrong answer...it's totally up to you. Given my risk tolerance, I wouldn't buy/install an alarm upgrade...but again, that's just me.
 
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