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      01-01-2009, 08:00 PM   #1
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Introducing myself on here..

Hey guys, I'm new to your forum as you guys can see..
And I'm currently in the market looking for an M3..
Of course I'm looking for some opinions/suggestions from you all.

Currently I own an Infiniti FX35.. it is my first car in which I got about 5 months ago I beleive..I'am 18 btw... I'm looking to sell it and get myself into an M.
Now my question is, which year should I shoot for? I personally have been looking at the 04-05's... Are there any particular problems I should look out for with these years? I will be getting it in Auto btw.. My dad owns a body shop down here in South Fla. and he buys and sells cars as well from an auction so price wise I think i'll be able to find something for a decent price.

And can someone please explain to me what is exactly included in the Competition package? And was this offered on 04's? And what else packages do M's come with? Here's a pic of my FX


Thanks for all the Help Guys!
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      01-01-2009, 10:57 PM   #2
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Why not get into an '07 or '08 335i (especially if you can pick one up @ an auction price) and mod it? With an E46 M3, you're looking at older technology (with that awful, jerky SMG tranny ) and a slower car than a stock 335i.

Of course, you could mod the older M3, but you would need a s/c to go faster than a 335i; from what I've seen, modding an older M3 can set you back some serious $$, not to mention a plethora of potential problems. I know a guy with a s/c'd E46 M3 w/ NOS...fast car that's always in the shop for misc. engine problems.
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      01-01-2009, 11:11 PM   #3
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Well I do have a budget, that's the only thing. When I said I could obtain one at an auction price, I meant a difference from ebay/dealerships...

I'm not into modding the engine performance wise.. I'am more of a cosmetic person.
So S/C's Turbo's aren't really what I'm shooting for. Just a clean DD with some power, that's all.

Now, as for the SMG tranny jerking, is this on all the older models? And is this something that is fixable or is it just a natural thing for older m3's?

Thanks for the input, and not being an ass.
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      01-01-2009, 11:15 PM   #4
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Wrong forum if you're looking to get an E46 M3.

Try E46Fanatics
mfestforums
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      01-01-2009, 11:17 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IFX View Post
Well I do have a budget, that's the only thing. When I said I could obtain one at an auction price, I meant a difference from ebay/dealerships...

I'm not into modding the engine performance wise.. I'am more of a cosmetic person.
So S/C's Turbo's aren't really what I'm shooting for. Just a clean DD with some power, that's all.

Now, as for the SMG tranny jerking, is this on all the older models? And is this something that is fixable or is it just a natural thing for older m3's?

Thanks for the input, and not being an ass.
If you're not into performance than why get an M3????
Buy an 06 325i E90.
Do all cosmetic mods
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      01-01-2009, 11:21 PM   #6
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i think you'll get better information on e46fanatics.com.
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      01-01-2009, 11:23 PM   #7
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E46 M3 is a better choice than The 335i anyday of the week
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      01-01-2009, 11:29 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IFX View Post
I'm not into modding the engine performance wise.. I'am more of a cosmetic person.
So S/C's Turbo's aren't really what I'm shooting for. Just a clean DD with some power, that's all.

Now, as for the SMG tranny jerking, is this on all the older models? And is this something that is fixable or is it just a natural thing for older m3's?

Thanks for the input, and not being an ass.
Nothing wrong with wanting cosmetic mods, even on an M3. Don't listen to anyone who tells you there is something wrong with that, its your money and your choice.

As for the SMG tranny...its the first or second version of SMG and its completely horrible...put it this way...think about how bad it could possibly be...times it by....10....and thats pretty much how bad it is. Its very jerky and uncomfortable. Nothing to do to fix it, just don't get it. Even SMG III (in the new M5) was known to be jerky but still not as bad as the E46 tranny!

I would go with a 335 coupe, and mod it cosmetically and youll have a beautiful ride man! good luck and welcome!
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      01-01-2009, 11:46 PM   #9
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Thanks for the input man^^ much appreciated.
Most helpful yet...
Nice ride as well.
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      01-02-2009, 03:33 AM   #10
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Quote:
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E46 M3 is a better choice than The 335i anyday of the week
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      01-02-2009, 04:34 AM   #11
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Quote:
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E46 M3 is a better choice than The 335i anyday of the week
no. it's a different choice. it's not better or worse. gg
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      01-02-2009, 09:58 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IFX View Post
Well I do have a budget, that's the only thing. When I said I could obtain one at an auction price, I meant a difference from ebay/dealerships...

I'm not into modding the engine performance wise.. I'am more of a cosmetic person.
So S/C's Turbo's aren't really what I'm shooting for. Just a clean DD with some power, that's all.

Now, as for the SMG tranny jerking, is this on all the older models? And is this something that is fixable or is it just a natural thing for older m3's?

Thanks for the input, and not being an ass.
Go drive an E46 SMG and see if the hard, "jerky" SMG tranny bothers you. I drove a friend's E46 M3 SMG and hated it, especially compared to my 335i with the 6AT and paddle shifters. I think there are many other "fast" and affordable DDs out there other than an older M3, imho.

btw -- I used to drive a loaded '03 FX35 and a loaded and modded '04.5 G35 Sedan...loved both Infinitis!!!!
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Last edited by sflgator; 01-02-2009 at 10:21 AM.
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      01-02-2009, 09:59 AM   #13
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      01-02-2009, 11:33 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lvwirelessguy View Post
E46 M3 is a better choice than The 335i anyday of the week


It is still the definition of a performance coupe. It's also the most modifiable car on the planet. The 335i will never and can never be the balanced package of the M3. A nice car for sure, but a kitten compared to a lion. The E46 M3 is also far better looking too, inside and out. The E9Xs are confused in styling.
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      01-02-2009, 12:22 PM   #15
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I went from FX35 --> E46 M3 SMG --> E92 335 6MT and never looked back!

I loved the raw feeling of the E46 M3, but like everyone said it's old technology. Huge difference in build quality E46 had a lot plastic on the door handles console that seemed really cheap, but the E92 is definately a lot nicer to be in. More comfortable, just get some KW V2 coilovers on the E92 the car will feel like it should've felt.

Just w/ the Procede V1 (at the time) I would easily walk my M3.

But in the end, a 335 will never be an "M"

My next car will be E90 M3.
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      01-02-2009, 01:25 PM   #16
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It is still the definition of a performance coupe. It's also the most modifiable car on the planet. The 335i will never and can never be the balanced package of the M3. A nice car for sure, but a kitten compared to a lion. The E46 M3 is also far better looking too, inside and out. The E9Xs are confused in styling.
that's mostly opinion. and "balanced package" is definitely not the term you're looking for if you trying to say the e46 m3 pulls it off better. it's a better driver's car, but not a more balanced package.
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      01-02-2009, 01:32 PM   #17
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Quote:
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I went from FX35 --> E46 M3 SMG --> E92 335 6MT and never looked back!

I loved the raw feeling of the E46 M3, but like everyone said it's old technology. Huge difference in build quality E46 had a lot plastic on the door handles console that seemed really cheap, but the E92 is definately a lot nicer to be in. More comfortable, just get some KW V2 coilovers on the E92 the car will feel like it should've felt.

Just w/ the Procede V1 (at the time) I would easily walk my M3.

But in the end, a 335 will never be an "M"

My next car will be E90 M3.
+1. But, I would absolutely wait until BMW puts the F/I tt v8 engine in the next M3 (2010 or 2011???). Imagine tuning that sucker!
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      01-02-2009, 04:12 PM   #18
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that's mostly opinion. and "balanced package" is definitely not the term you're looking for if you trying to say the e46 m3 pulls it off better. it's a better driver's car, but not a more balanced package.
It's the whole point of the M division to balance more power with better handling with stronger braking and with sharper steering. That's what separates the Ms from the rest. Give a 335i more power and you just imbalance the package even more. It's already imbalanced more than non M operators care to admit. I have 4,000 miles behind the wheel of a 135i. Big difference between it and a E46 M3, except on paper where it doesn't count.
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      01-03-2009, 09:44 AM   #19
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Dude I wish I could have had a sick car like an M3 at 18! Anyways I would say....get an M3 comp pkg...it was only for 05-06. It came with CSL rims, upgraded brakes, special steering wheel, some tweaks in CPU and better steering ratio. A e92 is also a great choice as well. Of course, it has newer styling, which is what matters a lot at 18 right lol.
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      01-07-2009, 11:56 AM   #20
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Welcome to the forum.
Like other's have said, M3Forum, E46fanatics, and BimmerForums are going to be better sources of information on the E46 M3. Then again, don't let that discourage you from being active on this site.
http://m3.madrussian.net/ is another great source of info on the E46 M3.

I think you're on the right path with looking at the '04-'05s. Given the fact that the E9x M3 is available, and the way the current economy is, you may also see some '06 vehicles in your price range.

As for the SMG. It is not an automatic.
There... had to get that out there, because if you drive the car expecting it to perform like a regular automatic transmission, you're going to be sadly disappointed. I actually like it... then again, I also like the Maserati DuoSelect. Best thing to do is try it out.

One thing to keep in mind. An M car is expensive. Not just to purchase, but also to operate. It's a much more finicky machine then a standard BMW. Be prepared for that.

Competition Package (ZHP) was only offered in '05-06 and includes:
- 19" wheels
- stiffer springs
- different steering rack
- Alcantara (faux-suede) steering wheel, ebrake, and shift knob
- different interior trim
- larger cross-drilled rotors
- M-track mode (you lose cruise control and radio controls on the wheel)
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