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      01-05-2007, 10:53 PM   #1
Phantom_9192
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Need some input quickly :)

Hi all-
I am seriously considering buying my dream car in the next couple of days, an M3.
I am looking at an '03 with 44k miles and the SMG. It's a beautiful piece of machinery.

Couple of questions:
I've read up on the SMG, and even though I drive a race car on weekends (when I can ) I was uh... pretty violent in my test drive. I know I can get to where I'm much smoother with a little practice.
My main questions about the SMG are:
1) is it driveable for my wife in auto mode? I understand that the answer may just be "well she'll have to try it and see".
2) are there any issues with the '03 SMG? How long can I expect it to last?

Couple of other questions:
3) what does a standard oil change, etc. cost from an avg dealership and how often does the car need it?
4) I would like to plan on driving this car past 100k miles... is that realistic for an M3?
5) anything else I should know about the car? Especially problems or concerns, including things to look for? I will likely have it inspected by a BMW dealership in town before I pull the trigger on it.

It's a smoking deal financially and I love the color combo (the Imola red interior even grew on me when I saw the car in person).

All opinions are welcome! This is a big decision for me... I'm in your capable hands.

Thanks!
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      01-05-2007, 11:26 PM   #2
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Wrong forum

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Originally Posted by Phantom_9192 View Post
Hi all-
I am seriously considering buying my dream car in the next couple of days, an M3.
I ain't the moderator but I can definitely say this is the wrong forum. There are so many good E46 M3 forums to pose this question.
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      01-05-2007, 11:31 PM   #3
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k thanks... didn't realize. I'll find the right spot for it.

Thanks!
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      01-05-2007, 11:54 PM   #4
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k thanks... didn't realize. I'll find the right spot for it. Thanks!
roadfly.com
bimmerforums.com
e46fanatics.com

Are all pretty good. Good luck, enjoy your car, I'm sure you will love it.
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      01-07-2007, 09:24 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantom_9192 View Post
Hi all-
I am seriously considering buying my dream car in the next couple of days, an M3.
I am looking at an '03 with 44k miles and the SMG. It's a beautiful piece of machinery.

Couple of questions:
I've read up on the SMG, and even though I drive a race car on weekends (when I can ) I was uh... pretty violent in my test drive. I know I can get to where I'm much smoother with a little practice.
My main questions about the SMG are:
1) is it driveable for my wife in auto mode? I understand that the answer may just be "well she'll have to try it and see".
2) are there any issues with the '03 SMG? How long can I expect it to last?

Couple of other questions:
3) what does a standard oil change, etc. cost from an avg dealership and how often does the car need it?
4) I would like to plan on driving this car past 100k miles... is that realistic for an M3?
5) anything else I should know about the car? Especially problems or concerns, including things to look for? I will likely have it inspected by a BMW dealership in town before I pull the trigger on it.

It's a smoking deal financially and I love the color combo (the Imola red interior even grew on me when I saw the car in person).

All opinions are welcome! This is a big decision for me... I'm in your capable hands.

Thanks!
03 is a great year to pick up an e46 M3, its got LED lights and most Rod Bearing issues of the first two years have been address. 44k miles isnt too bad buts it alot considering within a blink of an eye you are pass 50k and close to 60k for the next major maintenance II insp. Which mean money!
... for the inspection, most likely major parts replacement like brakes, pads, rotors, valve adjustment, a average $2-3k figure.

So, for the money you're saving getting a 44k miles car, its out the door.
I suggest getting paying a little more for a 30k or less mileage car.

SMG shouldn't be a driving problem with your wife, I just think of it like my e90 steptronic but much faster/better. I like 6MT better for resale, since it would be easier to fix at non-dealer shops.

Im very happy with my e46 M3 and expect to keep it for awhile... take your time picking one... get a good PPI and carfax.

expect to pay $725-$1200 for maint I or II service, n depends if valve adjustment is needed. I heard this car go well pass 100k miles, but all is depended on how it was driven and maintained. So, if you get a lower mileage car you would know better its life and service history to take it to its old age
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      01-11-2007, 01:59 PM   #6
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Thanks!
I did a ton of research and have all the maint details on the car... and I bought it. I got a wonderful deal on it (under trade in) and it literally looks like I just drove it off the showroom floor. Amazing how new it looks.
Tires are in great shape, front brakes were replaced (including rotors) right before I got it... it's just an amazing machine.

Truth be told, I drove it the first day and half without using the sport button... lol... wow.
I need to do some research to determine exactly what happens in the engine to so significantly improve the performance (or to so significantly reduce it when it's not in sport mode).

Wow what a car.
And yes, I am wary of the 60k mile service. :-)

Thanks again!

BTW it's Steel Gray Metallic, Imola red interior, SMG.
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      01-12-2007, 03:20 PM   #7
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Congrats on your new M3. I also just bought one, a 2004 with 16000 miles, way under trade in!! I live in Stuttgart and love the Autobahns here. The family and I went down to Bodensee on the Germany/Switzerland border, with the Swiss Alps in the background on the other side of the lake. the trip computer said we averaged 115 mph!

I love this car!!

Good move, from a newbiw to a newbie.:rocks:
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      03-18-2007, 06:04 PM   #8
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I'd agree that auto mode is very driveable, tho doesn't 'creep' and needs a little learning. It is certainly OK in auto mode and fantastic in manual - as a race driver you have obviously appreciated some of its joys already ('instant' full throttle changes with both hands on wheel, double declutching, change lights and launch control - no, maybe not on a test drive!).

SMG (in UK) seems very reliable in general. Why not - after all, it's a manual box with electronic activation so avoids some of the manual's driver-imposed stresses on both box and engine (it changes down before laboured, tells you when to change up, and according to BMW prevents downshift if it would mean over-revving).

Plenty of UK cars seem to have achieved up to 100k mileage - I intend to with mine (but not yet!) though BMW have whacked up the extended warranty cost.

It is important that first service (change oils and tighten head etc) is done within 1800 miles - in UK lack of/late stamp affects warranty and resale. (See another thread.)

Sport button (at least on UK model) affects only sharpness of throttle response, not power or torque - it just feels that way. If you switch to Sport at say 70 on part throttle car 'leaps' forward because throttle opens wider, as the Sport throttle response is a convex curve (strange but true: UK site BM3W has the response curves to prove it).

Why did someone think your post was in the wrong place? There are other similar. Is there a different subsection for such queries?

Last edited by Helix; 03-21-2007 at 06:18 AM. Reason: Clarification/expansion of first line. and end of para 2
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