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      11-29-2007, 05:19 PM   #45
UltimateBMW
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Originally Posted by carnuts3 View Post
I agree. The concern I have about the M3, based on the reviews, is that I'm not sure I'm going to get enough enjoyment day-to-day vs the competition. If I have to drive this car in the upper rev bands to really enjoy and appreciate it, I wouldn't be interested. I'm looking for a great daily driver that I can enjoy most of the time on the local roads within the speed limit - and occasionally blow off a wise guy at a traffic light. A test drive is the only way to go before buying, I guess.
Like with all things.. You get out of it what you put into it.

And like was mentioned in above posts, if you want fun within the speed limit a sports car probably is not going to deliver for you. You should look into getting a luxury sedan cruiser or a grand tourer.

Wait, no. Reviews have said the M3 makes a good tourer as well.
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      11-29-2007, 06:51 PM   #46
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It may be appropriate to note that the M3 has continually become more and more of a GT over the years and less a homologation racer. However, to think the car is strictly a GT, not track capable, not brutally fast and not with huge lateral grip (all better than any previous gen. M3 or 911!) is to deluding yourself. BMW, IMHO, has very nicely blurred the lines between sports car and GT with the new M3.
As we all remember from the Evo article on the best M cars ever: The e30 M3 took 1rst place; the E46 CSL took 2nd place; the E39 M5 took 3rd place; and the brand new 2008 E92 M3 took 4th place.

Interesting article written from those who drove the cars side by side. Some interesting quotes from the article:

1986 BMW M3 (E30)
Question is, have we saved the best till last or are we about to witness a bloody massacre? How can the boxy E30 M3 with its 2.5-liter inline-4 engine — even in its ultimate 1990 Sport Evolution configuration with 235 hp at 7,000 rpm — stand up to the sophisticated savagery of the E46 M3 CSL, the effortless mambo of the E39 M5, the supercar chops of the E26 M1 and the phenomenal pace, poise and polish of the E92 M3?

Quite easily, as it turns out. Let's make this simple: The original M3 is utterly brilliant. More to the point, it's utterly brilliant in ways that the people at M have either forgotten about or chosen to ignore. Something of the essence of the E30 is present in the CSL and the M1 — a sense of mechanical honesty, integration and purity — yet not in the E92 M3. For all its pace and grip, the new V8-powered M3 doesn't have the E30's dynamic fluency, its loose-limbed agility or its intimacy.

Apparently Formula 1 driver Jean Alesi liked his E30 M3 so much he later called it one of the most enjoyable and best-handling road cars he had ever owned. A finely balanced weight distribution of 48 percent front/52 percent rear gives one clue as to why it feels so good. This car can't rely on electronic aids, so it has to work with you and build a mutual bond of trust. It's as if the car knows exactly what you want to do. And in turn, the car's intentions and abilities are completely clear to the driver. If you can't form a close relationship with the E30, chances are you have no friends.

This original M3 from 1986, created as a homologation special for racing, is the antithesis of the new E92 M3 with its big horsepower and comfy seats. The pure connection between man and machine more than compensates for the car's comparative lack of pace down the straight bits. You can tell exactly what each of the four wheels is doing and the balance allows them to work in unison. This car is the very essence of what the BMW M Division is all about.

When we tally up the scores at the end of the day, it's the E30 M3 that beats them all. It wins because it does more with less and destroys the idea (apparently at the core of BMW M thinking these days) that if power is good, more power must be better.
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      11-29-2007, 07:42 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by ruff View Post
As we all remember from the Evo article on the best M cars ever: The e30 M3 took 1rst place; the E46 CSL took 2nd place; the E39 M5 took 3rd place; and the brand new 2008 E92 M3 took 4th place.

Interesting article written from those who drove the cars side by side. Some interesting quotes from the article:

1986 BMW M3 (E30)
Question is, have we saved the best till last or are we about to witness a bloody massacre? How can the boxy E30 M3 with its 2.5-liter inline-4 engine — even in its ultimate 1990 Sport Evolution configuration with 235 hp at 7,000 rpm — stand up to the sophisticated savagery of the E46 M3 CSL, the effortless mambo of the E39 M5, the supercar chops of the E26 M1 and the phenomenal pace, poise and polish of the E92 M3?

Quite easily, as it turns out. Let's make this simple: The original M3 is utterly brilliant. More to the point, it's utterly brilliant in ways that the people at M have either forgotten about or chosen to ignore. Something of the essence of the E30 is present in the CSL and the M1 — a sense of mechanical honesty, integration and purity — yet not in the E92 M3. For all its pace and grip, the new V8-powered M3 doesn't have the E30's dynamic fluency, its loose-limbed agility or its intimacy.

Apparently Formula 1 driver Jean Alesi liked his E30 M3 so much he later called it one of the most enjoyable and best-handling road cars he had ever owned. A finely balanced weight distribution of 48 percent front/52 percent rear gives one clue as to why it feels so good. This car can't rely on electronic aids, so it has to work with you and build a mutual bond of trust. It's as if the car knows exactly what you want to do. And in turn, the car's intentions and abilities are completely clear to the driver. If you can't form a close relationship with the E30, chances are you have no friends.

This original M3 from 1986, created as a homologation special for racing, is the antithesis of the new E92 M3 with its big horsepower and comfy seats. The pure connection between man and machine more than compensates for the car's comparative lack of pace down the straight bits. You can tell exactly what each of the four wheels is doing and the balance allows them to work in unison. This car is the very essence of what the BMW M Division is all about.

When we tally up the scores at the end of the day, it's the E30 M3 that beats them all. It wins because it does more with less and destroys the idea (apparently at the core of BMW M thinking these days) that if power is good, more power must be better.
I have never driven an E30 M3 (add to the list of cars to drive...). I only dreamed as a young-un that I would one day own that car. Recently I thought of "swapping" the E36 M3 for an E30 M3 to tide me over until a new car.

Nonetheless no matter how much magic this car has, who would really be satisfied actually owning one of these fairly crude (by todays standards) cars? That is the big question IMO. They are crude in fit/finish, looks, interior and many more categories as well. I certainly agree that there is more to a car than it's raw numbers but those points can be so subjective. That is when it is up to us each as drivers/owners to decide if we feel as "bonded" and "inspired" as the Evo guys felt to with the E30 M3.

If all of the M3 journos/critics are correct I should very likely enjoy an E92 M3 less than my E36 M3. The E36 M3 is not that high in Evo's rankings (certainly not in the top 4) but mine, in it's current state of tune, is significantly closer to the E30 M3 and the CSL. Still I just can't see enjoying it more than an E92 M3, neither on objective numbers nor on subjective opinions and feeling.

Last but not least I just don't place all that much weight in this Evo evaluation and ranking. Sure all these guys are probably bigger car buffs than I am, they are all probably better drivers and certainly have driven immensely more cars than I have. I just don't think they used the best criteria and no matter who these guys are I am entitled to this opinion. Heck the M1 made the list becuase it is "exotic"? I don't really care much about that. The E92 M3 also gets knocked as too much of an "all arounder". Yeah big problem, a tragedy, what were BMW thinking? The car is too capable and that makes it less of an M? Wake up guys - the definition of M itself is changing. And the E39 M5 above the E92 M3??? I just can't see how they get there. Perhaps the article is sort of time relative, like the E39 M5 was a bigger and better achievement at the time than the E92 M3 is today. I definitely get that sense of that they weight the merits of the cars in their own day NOT today.

BTW did you catch the gushing praise in the Aussie car of the year article?
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      11-29-2007, 08:58 PM   #48
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Based on all that I've read about the E30 M3--and the poster of it that used to hang above my bed in college--I can say that I would have loved to own one. I guess one can still buy an E30 M3 at a significant premium, but one cannot buy a new one--never mind using it as a DD. I am in the market for a new car, and the reality is that I am confined to consider the cars that are available today in the USA. I simply cannot see a worthy RWD alternative to the M3 at its price and utility range.
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      11-29-2007, 10:44 PM   #49
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Based on all that I've read about the E30 M3--and the poster of it that used to hang above my bed in college--I can say that I would have loved to own one. I guess one can still buy an E30 M3 at a significant premium, but one cannot buy a new one--never mind using it as a DD. I am in the market for a new car, and the reality is that I am confined to consider the cars that are available today in the USA. I simply cannot see a worthy RWD alternative to the M3 at its price and utility range.
Well, there are still good E30s out there, and no reason they could not be a DD.

http://www.roadfly.com/bmw/classifie...1&sortby=&dir=

http://www.roadfly.com/bmw/classifie...8&sortby=&dir=

For maybe 1/3 the price of the E92 you could have a cherry E30.
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      11-29-2007, 10:47 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by GregW / Oregon View Post
Well, there are still good E30s out there, and no reason they could not be a DD.

http://www.roadfly.com/bmw/classifie...1&sortby=&dir=

http://www.roadfly.com/bmw/classifie...8&sortby=&dir=

For maybe 1/3 the price of the E92 you could have a cherry E30.
Yeah, but those cars have 110k+ miles on them. I wouldn't make a DD out of a car that old with that kind of milage. Not anymore. Those days are over for me. When I turn the key in the morning, I don't want to have any doubts about making it to work.
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      11-29-2007, 10:52 PM   #51
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Yeah, but those cars have 110k+ miles on them. I wouldn't make a DD out of a car that old with that kind of milage. Not anymore. Those days are over for me. When I turn the key in the morning, I don't want to have any doubts about making it to work.
Just slip an S54 in there and you'd have a unique ride. I know what you mean, though, takes a lot of commitment and time to keep something that old perfect.
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      11-29-2007, 10:53 PM   #52
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Just slip an S54 in there and you'd have a unique ride. I know what you mean, though, takes a lot of commitment and time to keep something that old perfect.
And garage space that I don't have! I live in a condo with a single designated spot. If I had garage space, there are several cars like the E30 M3 that I would like to "collect".
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      11-29-2007, 11:00 PM   #53
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And garage space that I don't have! I live in a condo with a single designated spot. If I had garage space, there are several cars like the E30 M3 that I would like to "collect".
Maybe you need to think about a house with a bigger garage before a new M3?
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Last edited by GregW / Oregon; 11-30-2007 at 01:35 PM.
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      11-30-2007, 01:22 PM   #54
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That one opinion and it's a good one, but here's how I see it and you can see if you agree with me on this.

The high-performance saloon/coupe cars are indeed getting faster, much faster in fact but the problems is the type of people who are looking to purchase such motors, the upwardly mobile persons with families, ie. guys like me - early forties with young kids who want a fast car but don't necessarily have the ability to drive such a car with so much performance. So what do the manufacturers do, do they make the car to be the ultimate handling machine with cat like reflectes and a limit which when breached will kill you if your not quick enough, of course not they made a car which telegraphs it's limits with mild understeer and dull the steering response so that Joe average (me) will not put her off the road within the first mile of really opening up the throttle.

While all of this is great for the (me) people of the world it's not the kind of excitement that road tester expect from something with an M badge on it's nose. This downward marking and ratings started with the new M5 and M6 and has continued with the new M3. The problem is that the greatness is still there only it's limits are so high as mere mortals can't reach them and rate the car as no better than a 335i etc. This is the case with this Autoexpress review, just normal guys that happen to be journalists who are writing reviews on specialist motors and don't have the abilities to judge.

I say best leave such cars to the likes of EVO who clearly know how cars like this should be driven.
So, your point is save $20k and buy a 335??? If so, you can probably convince me.
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      11-30-2007, 01:25 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
Like with all things.. You get out of it what you put into it.

And like was mentioned in above posts, if you want fun within the speed limit a sports car probably is not going to deliver for you. You should look into getting a luxury sedan cruiser or a grand tourer.

Wait, no. Reviews have said the M3 makes a good tourer as well.
Yeah, but, from what I can tell, for $20k more than you probably have to spend.
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