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      01-16-2013, 12:18 PM   #1
djseto
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E92 Coupe to E93 Convertible?

I bought my 2008 E92 Alpine White Coupe about 4 months ago with about 44K miles on it. At the time, I was really looking for a convertible but I got a steal on this coupe. I absolutely love my coupe, but living in NC comes with some pretty solid weather. This past weekend it was 75 degrees and I found myself kind of wishing I had a convertible again.

So today I was tooling around on the interwebs and found a 2008 Silverstone Metallic convertible with only 12K miles on it at a nearby dealer. I have plans to look at the car here in a few hours, but from what I see online, it does have a few less options. I think it lacks PDC, Carbon Trim, Extended Novillo Leather, 19" wheels, and maybe comfort access. I can't recall what's included in what packages, but I know it does have the Tech package. My E92 has cold weather, tech, and premium. Not sure about this one until I see it.

I know the convertible is about 500lbs heavier (both are 6 speed manuals btw) and all the major magazine reviews said it lacks a bit of the control and feel of the coupe because it's heavier and lacks the rigidity when the roof is down. Even when up, because it doesn't have the CF roof, it still handles differently.

I just got back from the 2 Day M school and I asked the instructors if the average person (like me) would notice the difference in terms of handling and they said most likely not, especially if I don't track the car. That being said, I'm I crazy for wanting to move from coupe to convertible? Overall comments/thoughts?
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      01-16-2013, 12:32 PM   #2
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I think the preference between the two has to be your choice. Thing I would be concerned with is being upside down on the coupe if you financed it, since you only got it 4 months ago. Obviously don't know your situation, so may not even apply.

GL with the decision!
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      01-16-2013, 01:17 PM   #3
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I drove a Z4M convertible a few times and decided that the convertible experience isn't for me personally. When I'm out driving for pleasure, I'm focused on the road and don't really have time to enjoy the view above, behind, and beside me, so the main benefit for me was moot, and I'd be putting up with extra weight, lesser handling, poorer aesthetics, getting sunburned, and paying more for the privilege. That said, I did order a moonroof with my coupe since I do appreciate the extra light and engine noise that opening it affords, and moonroof open plus windows down gives me just the amount of convertible experience I want with almost no downside except a little extra weight.

I agree with the instructors that you *probably* won't feel much of a difference on public roads. However, when I add an extra ~400 pounds to my car by carrying 2-3 passengers, I can definitely feel the difference in both acceleration and agility. It's not enough to piss me off, but it definitely reminds me that I can't drive my car the way I'm used to on back roads while I'm carrying them (the other reminder of that comes from their screams ). But I'm also a track junkie and as a result I've become more sensitive to sensations like that, so depending on your driving style you may not notice at all.

But on a tangent subject, what's up with the "especially if I don't track"?? Take your M3 to the track, dude! Even if you only do it once to cross it off your bucket list, there's absolutely no public road substitute for the track experience and no other way to truly discover the M3's purpose in this world.
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Last edited by jphughan; 01-16-2013 at 01:26 PM.
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      01-16-2013, 01:34 PM   #4
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Having just done the 2 Day M School, I definitely love how the coupe handles. I used to do a ton of track days on my motorcycle (NOW THAT is a rush). My fear with taking the M is the cost of repairs should something happen. I know from motorcycle track days that sh*t happens and when it does, it doesn't matter who's at fault. Everyone is on their own for repairs. Replacing parts, body panels, etc. on a motorcycle is relatively cheap. On the M...not so much.

The weight def. does concern me. The other thing for me is that I just don't get out on the motorcycle as much and on days when it's nice, a convertible def. bring a different but fun pleasure of driving. I drive the car hard when I can, but I also know the street is not a place for stupid driving. I'm getting involved more with my local BMWCCA chapter and they have an HPDE day coming later in the year so who knows. I guess I want the best of both worlds, but I'm not sure I want the compromise. We have awful first world problems on this forum...
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      01-16-2013, 01:40 PM   #5
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The weight is definitely a legit concern. I'd get a 911 cab or Boxster S.
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      01-16-2013, 01:42 PM   #6
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An E93 is definitely a great compromise car if you want something that can serve as a very good GT car and still carry itself perfectly well on the road and even pretty well on the track. I just don't drive very much to see the sights, I guess -- but keep in mind that some tracks and/or HPDE organizers don't allow convertibles of any kind, and I believe that includes most if not all CCA chapters. As for damage at the track, I'm lucky in that my insurance carrier (at least in Texas) covers driving on the track as long as you're not practicing for or participating in an actual race, but there are also independent HPDE insurance carrier such as Lockton that can cover you if your regular insurance doesn't. That of course adds significantly to the cost of the event, but per an earlier "M School vs HPDE costs" thread, you'd still be spending a lot less.

But for me, I figure that if I damage my car on the track while covered by my normal carrier, unless the repairs are in the high four-figure range I'll probably just pay out of pocket to avoid a major insurance premium spike and possibly a "We'll cover you for this but we're not renewing you" situation. Of course having dedicated HPDE insurance avoids this whole issue. But at the end of the day, avoiding damage is mostly a product of knowing your limits and expanding them gradually. Keeping MDM on can also help. With a sufficiently lenient computer, as long as you're mindful of when it intervenes and make a mental note to consider adjusting your driving style in that spot rather than continuing to drive poorly and letting the computer smooth you out into a rockstar, I think keeping the nannies on can work. And now that I've coded Euro MDM, I've got that exact setup of the computer stepping in only when I've really screwed up beyond being able to save it myself and am therefore grateful for its intervention -- otherwise it lets me do my thing.

Last edited by jphughan; 01-16-2013 at 01:48 PM.
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      01-16-2013, 04:30 PM   #7
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Somewhere here earlier, I did a poll of E93 owners that were/weren't motorcycle riders. It wasn't really conclusive to say whether most E93's were operated by motorcyclists. But there were quite a few. It's a real unscientific poll, at any rate.

My experience is different from yours in that I've never driven an E90 or E92. I went straight into a E93 without even driving one before; so my opinion is tempered by not having experience in the lighter models.

I've done about a dozen motorcycle Track Days and partially went into a amateur racing...but stopped after the expenses began mounting. And I've owned 15 bikes over the years with lots of miles.

Since March 2012 when I brought my E93 home from Germany, I've ridden both of my current motorcycles twice each. I just don't care about them as much. The convertible is absolutely fantastic, as much a blast and a frakking riot as the sport bike. I've done three track days with the E93 in 2012. And the concern about crashing...hmmmm. If you go "off" with a motorcycle at > 30 mph, you're most likely going to pay out the ass for repairs. I've seen people go off in their M3's at that speed and do $0.00 damage. It's that four-wheels-stability thing.

On my last track day, my E93 was 100% stock as-delivered. I was keeping up with and passing a few of the other intermediate-class E90's and E92's. And I actually feel the car is better with the top-down because it gives just a little bit more weight to the back-end for my style of cornering.

So, 400 pounds... who cares, really? If it adds 2.00 seconds to your time at the track, or 4.00 seconds. So? What you want is to be able to hear that amazing engine, have the wind blowing around you, and breathing-in the scents...

My only advice to you: since you've driven one style already (a lot); go test drive a E93 for a dozen miles or so. That way you will limit the buyer's remorse.

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      01-16-2013, 04:57 PM   #8
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I drove the E93 today and was slightly let down by the performance with the added weight. The weight difference plus me and the sales guy was enough that I got out of the car and was just like "eh". I doesn't help that it's overcast and foggy today but I walked away feeling very blah about it. As suspected the car only had the Cold Weather and Tech Package vs. my optioned out E92. The car physically might as well been new. The previous owner lived in NH but kept a house here down on the beach. He had his own plane and would fly down occasionally when the weather sucked up North which explains the low mileage. He traded it in for a Jag XKR.

\\end debate.
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      01-16-2013, 07:03 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djseto View Post
That being said, I'm I crazy for wanting to move from coupe to convertible?
Yes

These cars are so heavy to begin with, even a stripped down coupe with CF roof as I have..I just can't see handicapping the car further with a hardtop vert..unless you are just going to lug it around town.

I have driven a fully loaded vert and my stripped e92..totally different feel. The weight makes a difference
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      01-16-2013, 07:05 PM   #10
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E93 is an awesome car I used to have it but the E90/92 are just much more sportier and you feel a weight difference compared to the heavier E93.
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      01-16-2013, 08:18 PM   #11
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The E93 may be a little slower in the end, but it feels just as fast with the wind blowing. Like riding a roller coaster. Plus, ladies love the drop top...
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      01-16-2013, 09:14 PM   #12
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I never had a convertible, nor had I driven an M3 let alone the convertible before getting it and I don't regret anything one bit. I really couldn't care less about the weight difference. The car is fast enough for me and a 400 pound difference isn't going to outweigh the fact that I can put the top down.

Having done an ED with the car during summer was truly one of the most amazing trips I've been on. The coupe can't compare to driving with the top down on a sunny day and the benefits of being able to hear the exhaust and engine that much more. With that said, convertibles just aren't for everyone either. I spend my time now awaiting warmer weather for the day the top can go back down
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      01-17-2013, 12:45 AM   #13
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I had an '08 E93 M3 for 3 years... I now have an E92 M3. While I enjoyed the top-down experience, I knew that this time around I wanted the more hardcore M3. I loved the sound of the M3 with the top down, and cruising around was nice, but I can feel the weight difference significantly between the E92 & E93... both in acceleration and handling. Guess it all depends on what you prefer.
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      01-19-2013, 05:49 PM   #14
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Yaeh it's heaver. And yeah it's slower.
That said my I put in a VT2 600 last year. Got down to 3.71 sec. in 0-60.
Now I just installed a 650.......
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      01-20-2013, 02:48 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdogg2000
I had an '08 E93 M3 for 3 years... I now have an E92 M3. While I enjoyed the top-down experience, I knew that this time around I wanted the more hardcore M3. I loved the sound of the M3 with the top down, and cruising around was nice, but I can feel the weight difference significantly between the E92 & E93... both in acceleration and handling. Guess it all depends on what you prefer.
This. I did same, also went from MT to DCT. Don't regret anything. I didn't put the top down enough to justify the weight difference. Handling is superior as well with the coupe which I realize is no big revelation. Convertible was a fine car though.

My suggestion is to stick with your coupe and it sounds like that's what you decided to do.

Edit to add: I went from '08 E93 to '13 E92, so there are a lot of other things that have made me happier. Huge improvement to iDrive and technology for example.
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      01-20-2013, 04:34 PM   #16
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Also depends on where you live. Here in SoCal, I drive topless 10-11 months a year. That makes it more worthwhile.
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      01-21-2013, 04:01 PM   #17
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I say the decision depends on where you live and how much sunshine you get. Where I live in Canada - I can put the top down year round but realisitically do it about 9 months of the year.

My friend Jackson has an E92 M3 with EDC and he and I have driven each other's cars back to back. We both found very little difference between the two cars for daily use.

I'm a huge fan of the folding top (an engineering marvel) and have had zero issues with squeeks and rattles since new.
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      01-21-2013, 08:17 PM   #18
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Thing I would be concerned with is being upside down on the coupe if you financed it
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      02-27-2013, 01:35 PM   #19
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E93 M3!

Make the move to topless!

Just picked up my Ďvert 3 weeks ago (í09 DCT)... LOVE it! Yes, Itís a tad slower than the hard tops, but when itís 70 degrees outside and sunny and your top is down, youíll have ZERO regrets!!
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      02-27-2013, 01:57 PM   #20
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If you're not going to track it, doesn't really matter + you wanted a convertible from the start. Just make sure you don't get ripped off on the trade in.
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      02-27-2013, 02:16 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by SWOT1 View Post
Make the move to topless!

Just picked up my Ďvert 3 weeks ago (í09 DCT)... LOVE it! Yes, Itís a tad slower than the hard tops, but when itís 70 degrees outside and sunny and your top is down, youíll have ZERO regrets!!
Looks great
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      02-27-2013, 04:39 PM   #22
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After driving every platform the M3 has to offer I'll tell you this: The E93 does not feel anything like the E92, weight and chassis defeats the cars main purpose. The E93 power wise felt very much like the base e92 335i which for me was not nearly enough power. You will notice a big difference when driving both spiritedly. If you love to drop the top then go for it, if not stick with the better car.
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