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      01-21-2008, 10:53 AM   #1
Yonkers
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Tracking your M3

So I've never taken a car to the track before. But it seems like it is many people's opinion that it would be quite a waste to buy an M3 and not track it. So I started to do a little research for a track in my area (Houston, Texas). I haven't done a LOT of research but I did find this one place. But the cost is crazy! Is this what you guys mean when you guys go track cars?
http://www.msrhouston.com/

Platinum Membership
-$35,000 Initiation Fee
-No Monthly dues for life
-No Daily Use Fees for life

Gold Membership
-$15,000 Initiation Fee
-No Monthly dues
-No Daily Use Fees
-Add your spouse for $1,000 plus $50/mo dues
-Add a child for $2,500 plus $50/mo dues

Silver Membership
-$7,000 Initiation Fee
-$150 Monthly dues
-$30 Daily Use Fees

Annual Membership
-$2,000 Initiation Fee
-$300 Monthly dues
-$50 Daily Use Fees

All members will enjoy exclusive track privileges
- 30 Weekends per year (Friday through Sunday)
- On-Site Storage
- Shop and Retail
- Service Facilities
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      01-21-2008, 11:04 AM   #2
GregW / Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yonkers View Post
So I've never taken a car to the track before. But it seems like it is many people's opinion that it would be quite a waste to buy an M3 and not track it. So I started to do a little research for a track in my area (Houston, Texas). I haven't done a LOT of research but I did find this one place. But the cost is crazy! Is this what you guys mean when you guys go track cars?
http://www.msrhouston.com/
No, this is a private club, like joining a country club. The most common route for people to do "driving schools" or "high performance driver education" sessions is through local BMW clubs (BMWCCA, BMWACA, etc.). I don't know anything about Texas, but here in Portland the club sponsors about 4 track days a year. The cost is very minimal for members ($100+/day). In addition, the other car clubs (Porsche, Alfa, etc.) usually let BMWs participate on their track days. We have the benefit of having a city-owned track here (PIR). Check the BMWCCA.org website for information on joining or here for the Houston Chapter: http://www.houston-bmwcca.com/.

Another advantage of club membership is that they offer a $500 rebate on the purchase of a new BMW after you've been a member for at least a year.
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      01-21-2008, 11:37 AM   #3
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Another advantage of club membership is that they offer a $500 rebate on the purchase of a new BMW after you've been a member for at least a year.
I'm sure GregW knows this but for the uninformed the rebate does not include ///M cars.

A membership in the CCA also gets you a 10% discount on parts (both BMW and select suppliers) and an excellent monthly, Roundel

Here BMW runs 3-4 events a year, but they also have a strong relationship with the PCA (Porche); you are generally welcome to attend any of their events and camaraderie is excellent (from what I hear, never done a PCA)
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      01-21-2008, 11:51 AM   #4
GregW / Oregon
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BMW CCA rebate on car purchase

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I'm sure GregW knows this but for the uninformed the rebate does not include ///M cars.
Actually I did not know that. Our local club is a BMW ACA affiliate (been a member since 1975) and I didn't join CCA until after I purchased my last M. Are you positive? This is what the BMWCCA website says regarding Member Rewards:

http://www.bmwcca.org/MembershipRewards

Eligible Vehicles:
New passenger cars (including European Delivery), new SAVs and Certified Pre-Owned vehicles.

Ineligible Vehicles:
New, non-registered vehicles in excess of 1,000 miles including company vehicles, retail demos or loaner vehicles. Pre-owned passenger cars and SAVs that have not been enrolled in the BMW Certified Pre-Owned Vehicle Program. Military & Diplomatic sales. The MINI is not included in this program.
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      01-21-2008, 11:56 AM   #5
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greg are you planning on tracking your car?
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      01-21-2008, 12:03 PM   #6
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Are you positive?
95% so... it was 99% until I read your post My dealer has never given me one, but perhaps I'm being shortchanged
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      01-21-2008, 12:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvacha View Post
I'm sure GregW knows this but for the uninformed the rebate does not include ///M cars.
You, sir, are incorrect.

http://www.bmwcca.org/files/Membersh...ogram_Form.pdf

$500 for the M3, $1000 for the M5, they don't specifically mention the M6.

EDIT: The dealer doesn't do it, you need to send in this form.
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      01-21-2008, 12:35 PM   #8
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M3 rebate

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Originally Posted by Keto View Post
You, sir, are incorrect.

http://www.bmwcca.org/files/Membersh...ogram_Form.pdf

$500 for the M3, $1000 for the M5, they don't specifically mention the M6.

EDIT: The dealer doesn't do it, you need to send in this form.
I knew I'd seen that somewhere--thanks.
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      01-21-2008, 12:48 PM   #9
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I second what Greg said. Joining a automobile "country club" is nice and all but way too much money to spend on just one track. Unless you plan on doing some amateur wheel-to-wheel racing and need a regular venue to do testing, or just many many days of private track time, or just don't mind paying big bucks to a member of something, there are better options. If you want to just occasionally enjoy testing the limits of your driving abilities and perhaps the limits of your car, joining any car club is much more economical. Typically, the national dues for car clubs are $50 a year give or take and each regional chapter usually sponsors 2 or 3 track events a season at various tracks. Depending on the cost of renting a particular track for 2-3 days, each event can cost you anywhere between $200-$600 or so, not counting maintenance and wear items on your car like brakes and tires. Except for the Porsche club, I've found that most car clubs do not require you to have a particular make of vehicle in order to participate in their driving events. I am a member of the BMWCCA and ACNA (Audi club) and they are both a fun bunch. I do feel that the Audi events are better organized and safer because they are better managed and more attention is placed on driving instruction to ensure that nobody goes out there and drives beyond their abilities or car's abilities. Not saying that my chapter of the BMWCCA is bad but compared to the Audi club, they're a but more lax which can be a bad thing. YMMV depending on what part of the country you're in though. Bottomline is that car clubs are the way to go if you just want to hit the track several weekends a year and not make a weekly habit of it. Much more affordable, more variety, and just as good driving instruction if not better than you would get from joining a country club. You attend enough of these and you may eventually graduate as an instructor which just means you work more at events but pay less for each event in exchange for riding shotgun with a stranger during their sessions who may or may not make you sh1t your pants until you set them straight. It's all good

Also I'm not sure if BMW offers this to new M3 owners but when I bought my M5 over 2 years ago, I was given a free driving course at their Spartansburg facility. They paid for everything except airfare and gave me and my gf the VIP treatment. They had a fleet of M3's, M5's and M6's for driving instruction use. It was still a blast for me even though it was really intended for newbies. if BMW still offers this, it may be a great way to break your cherry without having to use your own car at first.
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      01-21-2008, 12:53 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by masmole View Post
Also I'm not sure if BMW offers this to new M3 owners but when I bought my M5 over 2 years ago, I was given a free driving course at their Spartansburg facility. They paid for everything except airfare and gave me and my gf the VIP treatment. They had a fleet of M3's, M5's and M6's for driving instruction use. It was still a blast for me even though it was really intended for newbies. if BMW still offers this, it may be a great way to break your cherry without having to use your own car at first.
Yes, it is still offered with Performance Center delivery. There was a thread a while back on this.
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      01-21-2008, 01:25 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregW / Oregon View Post
Yes, it is still offered with Performance Center delivery. There was a thread a while back on this.
So it is offered at no additional cost when you purchase an M3 as well? Was this the case with E46 M3 purchases also? Or is it only if you choose performance center delivery? I took delivery at my chicago area dealer and didn't schedule the performance instruction until several months later. In my owner's manual was a voucher for such a course.
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      01-21-2008, 01:34 PM   #12
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So it is offered at no additional cost when you purchase an M3 as well? Was this the case with E46 M3 purchases also? Or is it only if you choose performance center delivery? I took delivery at my chicago area dealer and didn't schedule the performance instruction until several months later. In my owner's manual was a voucher for such a course.
I believe it is only with Performance Center delivery.

http://www.bmwusa.com/Standard/Conte.../Delivery.aspx
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      01-21-2008, 02:27 PM   #13
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I stand corrected. Thanks.
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      01-21-2008, 02:48 PM   #14
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Just go to the Nurburgring!

The Nordschleife is the best track in the world and one lap costs only 16 Euros.
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      01-21-2008, 03:49 PM   #15
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The Nordschleife is the best track in the world and one lap costs only 16 Euros.
easy for you to say
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      01-21-2008, 04:32 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swiss_cornholio View Post
The Nordschleife is the best track in the world and one lap costs only 16 Euros.
+$3000 USD for travel expenses for me
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      01-21-2008, 04:36 PM   #17
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There are plenty of open track days, racing events, and motorcross events that can easily be accessed for very little money....

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      01-21-2008, 05:15 PM   #18
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I received $500 back on every M3 I bought and $1000 back on the E39 M5. It's through the BMW CCA. You have to have been a member of at least a year before you can qualify.

It's well worth the $35/year membership including the Roundel Magazine.
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      01-21-2008, 05:50 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swiss_cornholio View Post
The Nordschleife is the best track in the world and one lap costs only 16 Euros.
swiss_cornholio, I've heard that Swiss Insurance companies will not cover you when you go to a track and that it's not even possible to take out extra insurance to cover track days with a CH company. Do you know if this is correct? (Have only recently moved to CH, so not sure what the local rules are). Thanks!
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      01-21-2008, 06:46 PM   #20
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swiss_cornholio, I've heard that Swiss Insurance companies will not cover you when you go to a track and that it's not even possible to take out extra insurance to cover track days with a CH company. Do you know if this is correct? (Have only recently moved to CH, so not sure what the local rules are). Thanks!
Well, I haven't done any research on this. I just know that a standard insurance contract explicitly excludes everything track related. Now for the Nordschleife it's a bit different as it is officially not a track but a "one-way-toll-road" on which there is no race going on and basic traffic rules apply. So theoretically your insurance company would have to cover it. BUT: before going there, make sure you explicitly ask them about that.

Anyway, do you know some tracks that are closer to Switzerland and that you can use without club membership or anything the like?
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      01-22-2008, 03:05 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swiss_cornholio View Post
Well, I haven't done any research on this. I just know that a standard insurance contract explicitly excludes everything track related. Now for the Nordschleife it's a bit different as it is officially not a track but a "one-way-toll-road" on which there is no race going on and basic traffic rules apply. So theoretically your insurance company would have to cover it. BUT: before going there, make sure you explicitly ask them about that.

Anyway, do you know some tracks that are closer to Switzerland and that you can use without club membership or anything the like?
Good question, that's exactly what I am looking into. Have a couple of friends in the area that have done track days, so am going to find out from them where the closest one is from CH. Will keep you posted when I find something out.

I'm also going to do some research to find out if any insurance here will cover track events.
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      01-22-2008, 03:13 AM   #22
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In the UK I used CCI for trackdays in the UK and Spa. Also know they covered a foreign car for UK trackday so they might provide cover for you guys?
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