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      10-23-2008, 11:57 AM   #67
MJC///M3
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Originally Posted by jaaz View Post
I test drove one last weekend and agree with your comments on the manual tranny. I hated the long gear shift throws and light clutch. Also, it seemed like there was no room for error in first gear--either you shifted perfectly or the car would buck like a bronco. It put me off a bit, have to admit.

On the other hand, the handling/suspension, sound of the engine, steering wheel, seats and exterior were all amazing.

In sum, I think it comes down to simple economics. I actually have an opportunity to trade in my 335i lease and purchase an IB M3 coupe at MSRP. Thing is, MSRP on an M3 with similar options that I have on my 335i is 69k.

Besides the fact that I also love my 335i, I'm finding it hard to justify paying $20k more for the M3. Of course there's a difference between a 335i and an M3, but is that difference worth $20k? That's the real question.

I really wish BMW would have kept the price of a loaded M3 near $60k. That was the sweet spot, in my opinion, and they missed it big time.
I had a similar issue on my test drive. For some reason I could not get first gear down at all. lol..i actually stalled it twice..kind of embarrassing. But sometimes it would be smooth as hell and other times I would feel like I was on a bull.

weird.
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      10-23-2008, 12:05 PM   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJC///M3 View Post
I had a similar issue on my test drive. For some reason I could not get first gear down at all. lol..i actually stalled it twice..kind of embarrassing. But sometimes it would be smooth as hell and other times I would feel like I was on a bull.

weird.
the car gets smooth as hell after 1200 mile service and break-in. then it only gets better and better.
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      10-23-2008, 01:59 PM   #69
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Originally Posted by sflgator View Post
Although the legend of the ///M car, the phenomenal handling, and that wonderful V8 sound may be intoxicating to most, one can certainly argue that ~ 450 lb.-ft. TQ on a PROcede v2 335i can be just as intoxicating.

Peak HP or torque doesn't mean a flippin' thing, unless you've figured out a way to stay at a precise point on the rev counter while transitioning through the gears, and that's impossible. Ultimately all that matters is the averaged whp across the entire rev range for normal driving, or the high average whp (midpoint of rpm spread to the redline--averaged) for aggressive driving/racing. Find those figures and you'll see that the N54 fails miserably as it makes its peak power and torque at midpoint and below and continously looses whp/torque as the revs go up toward redline. And redline is important as that determines the maximum velocity per gear. Even chipping the N54 only does so much due to the sharp power fall off. The major difference between the two power deliveries is that the M car has to be rev'd hard, but in that range it's producing very high sustainable whp all the way to redline. The N54 spools up quick to midrange and then flattens out considerably. If you like to keep the revs low for what I consider a lazy approach to spirited driving, the the N54 is your motor. If you like high whp and high revs and appreciate the reward, the S motors are for you.

High averaged whp
N54 = 243.43
S54 = 271.22
S65 = 329.93

Factor the high averaged whp to weight and the Z4 M and new M3 are very close, and both are far above the 135i/335i. The S motors can be modded too for even faster acceleration and quicker revs, and let's face it, the packages (overall cars) are far better balanced.

High averaged Whp-to-weight (mid revs to redline averaged whp divided by curb weight)

135i = 83.75 high avg whp per 1,000 lbs.
335i = 79.10 high avg whp per 1,000 lbs.
Z4 M = 98.05 high avg whp per 1,000 lbs.
E92 M3 = 100.65 high avg whp per 1,000 lbs.

Comparing the 135i and 335i, above high averaged whp to weight, and the 135i's slightly lower overall gearing (due to a smaller rear tire circumference vs. the 335i) is why the 135i accelerates faster than a 335i.
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Last edited by MVF4Rrider; 10-24-2008 at 04:07 AM.
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      10-23-2008, 04:05 PM   #70
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Except that the 335i actually has more like 350hp. There's a reason BMW under-rated the car so much, and it was to make the marketing arguement you're making right now. Let's work off of trap-speed instead.
Very wrong. The N54 has exactly 282.5 peak whp at 5610 rpms. at which point power and torque drop measurably all the way to 7,000 rpms, where it has only 260.4 whp and 203.6 lbs-ft (and only 162.5 whp at the rev range midpoint, but 283.6 lbs-ft.). That's no race motor...as they saying goes, high average whp wins races. Even my little 3.2 naturally aspirated S54 has 317 peak whp, and right where it needs to be--at redline (midpoint revs = 180.9 whp). During max acceleration, only the upper half of the powerband means anything, and that's not N54 territory. As for trap speed, only way to make a fair comparison is test the cars on the same day at the same location and all cars wearing the same rubber. And ultimately, that only proves which one is faster in that singular comparison. I can't remember the last time I did a 1/4 mile run on a public street. What really and truly matters in all this is the fun factor you get from the ride of your choice. I think it's great that 135i and 335i owners love their rides, even if they think the motor is more than reality. Harley riders think the same thing. A little off-idle grunt goes a long way to impress the narrow minded.

FWIW, I prefer the E46 M3 to the E92 M3. The E46 M3 is simply the industry standard sports coupe. The E92 M3 is great for sure, but too plush for my taste. Although the M-DCT is worth the price of admission.

And for those who think turbos have a modding advantage have never searched for performance parts for a E46 M3. You don't need any type forced induction to make a E46 M3 (or Z4 M for that matter) into even more of a track star than they already are. There are far better ways to make a car accelerate quicker than by adding power to the motor, which adversely affects economy and potentially warranties. Although, the S motors can gain there as well quite easily and far more reliably.

In the photo below, the BMW Motorsport (factory customer race car) Z4 M only produces 400 hp. But the car weighs little and for sure no hp is wasted.
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Last edited by MVF4Rrider; 10-24-2008 at 04:27 AM.
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      11-20-2008, 03:49 PM   #71
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Oh, and that engine sound! Sounds soooo amazing inside. Better sounding than the V10 M5/M5's I drove down at Spartanburg three days ago even!
bimmer, are you serious about the m3 sounds better than the m5 v10? I'd always though the v10 sounds much more farrari than the v8. Maybe you like american rumple than exotic sound?

I'm thinking of getting a used m6 just because of the sound but if what you said is true, I may consider the new m3.
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