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      11-07-2019, 11:31 PM   #1
ChiBimmer
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E93 vs E90

I'm in the market for an E90. I have an S2000 and I love convertibles. The M3 is meant to complement that as a luxury car that can once or twice a week carry two passengers and a car that can go fast in a straight line while handling too. My wife drives a Cayenne and that's the family car when as many as five of us to someone. I'm not looking to make my M3 a track car.

I've been thinking mostly about the sedan but since I don't need a huge backseat if there's not a big penalty for a drop top the E93 might work too. Obviously it's heavier and loses some chassis rigidity. My question is how much does that change the handling vs the sedan? Again, for me this street driving, not autocross, not 10/10 on the track. Also how is the noise level? I'll add that I'm not concerned about straight like acceleration. With 414 hp the added weight of convertible is like having

Thanks in advance!
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      11-08-2019, 12:02 AM   #2
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Honestly, you shouldn’t take what will be our conflicting opinions. You should find a way to test drive both and see for yourself.
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      11-08-2019, 12:05 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wyatth View Post
Honestly, you shouldn’t take what will be our conflicting opinions. You should find a way to test drive both and see for yourself.
Bingo. Gotta drive both for yourself and see what you think. It's gonna be 95% subjective.
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      11-08-2019, 12:20 AM   #4
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I ended up with an E90 because yes its more versatile. The differences as to weight/handling are really negligible and not an issue. The one thing is, that E90s tend to be far fewer in selection and a bit pricier. You being in Chicago, I cant see you taking advantage of a convertible car as say someone in CA or FL
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      11-08-2019, 01:24 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiBimmer View Post
I'm in the market for an E90. I have an S2000 and I love convertibles. The M3 is meant to complement that as a luxury car that can once or twice a week carry two passengers and a car that can go fast in a straight line while handling too. My wife drives a Cayenne and that's the family car when as many as five of us to someone. I'm not looking to make my M3 a track car.

I've been thinking mostly about the sedan but since I don't need a huge backseat if there's not a big penalty for a drop top the E93 might work too. Obviously it's heavier and loses some chassis rigidity. My question is how much does that change the handling vs the sedan? Again, for me this street driving, not autocross, not 10/10 on the track. Also how is the noise level? I'll add that I'm not concerned about straight like acceleration. With 414 hp the added weight of convertible is like having

Thanks in advance!
E92 , FYI - I also have a 03 S2K and a 991.2 GT3.
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      11-08-2019, 07:05 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wyatth View Post
Honestly, you shouldn't take what will be our conflicting opinions. You should find a way to test drive both and see for yourself.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusz06 View Post
I ended up with an E90 because yes its more versatile. The differences as to weight/handling are really negligible and not an issue. The one thing is, that E90s tend to be far fewer in selection and a bit pricier. You being in Chicago, I cant see you taking advantage of a convertible car as say someone in CA or FL
I agree that test drives are critical. I've driven 4 e90/2. I worry that 15 minutes in an E93 won't really tell me the story so I thought I'd reach out to owners.

I drive my S2000 top down as low 35 degrees as long as there is no salt. I store it from mid-December to March. If the heater in the E93 is as good as the S2000 I'd drive it too down on short trips above, I dunno, above 25 degrees as long as I'm not at highway speeds. I'm not some tough guy, far from it. I'll dress for weather a little colder than I otherwise would. I just find with a warm parka, gloves and a knit hat I'm good. I do put the windows up. Fall is my favorite time of year for driving.
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      11-08-2019, 07:14 AM   #7
ChiBimmer
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[/QUOTE]

E92 , FYI - I also have a 03 S2K and a 991.2 GT3.[/QUOTE]

Wow! Nice cars. Mine's also an AP1. I always find it awesome when owners of the top shelf hardware like GT3 can appreciate that Honda near two decades old is special.
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      11-08-2019, 08:05 AM   #8
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E93 is a lovely sounding boat.
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      11-08-2019, 10:11 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusz06 View Post
I ended up with an E90 because yes its more versatile. The differences as to weight/handling are really negligible and not an issue. The one thing is, that E90s tend to be far fewer in selection and a bit pricier. You being in Chicago, I cant see you taking advantage of a convertible car as say someone in CA or FL
Weight and handling is pretty significant if pushing the car from all the detailed analysis done by others... but if that's not material to the buyer then it doesn't matter.. but definitely noticeable difference due to weight. The spec sheets on performance e93 vs e90 don't lie.
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      11-08-2019, 10:23 AM   #10
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Make sure to drive the convertible with the roof down... you will forget about performance difference unless you want to track it.
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      11-08-2019, 11:06 AM   #11
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I'm also an S2K (AP1) owner, and I went with the E93 because of the glorious noises it makes with the top down. I'm also a fan of non-b pillar cars having wanted a '56 Belair 2-door hardtop while in high school. The E93 fills that bill on days I leave the top up, but have the expansive window opening with front and rear windows down.

Re: the trackability differences between the E93 and E90/2, I'm not tracking any of them, and if I was tracking, it wouldn't be anything I daily anyway, just in case I roll it into a ball.

Like you I'm in the snow belt (MI). I winter the S2K on Dunlop WS-80's, and park the E93 to keep the salt away from it. My wife has a larger car so I can still get bags of quickrete and plywood when I need to with her ride.
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      11-08-2019, 11:10 AM   #12
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You want a competent street car that'll never be tracked and you enjoy cars that allow the top to be put down?

I think you've already answered your own question...
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      11-08-2019, 11:36 AM   #13
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I have yet to drive an E90 mostly because when i was on the market my criteria was a hard top convertible, 6MT, with a V-8. So my list was greatly reduced to the E93 M3. With the top down I have fit 3 grown adults with reasonable comfort. top up its a little tight in the back but still fits my 8 year old with a booster seat and plenty of room for her in the back as well as my wife in the passenger seat. Im 6'3" and have my seat almost all the way back, this leaves the seat behind me rather useless, however, i feel that its such a fun car to drive that when i move my seat closer to the wheel i still feel comfortable and almost more engaged in the driving experience. Plus the steering wheel is telescoping so you can find a great compromise in just about any position. My car has a full Active Autowerkes exhaust system that i believe is the older "race" version. it is loud when you mash on it but the sound is behind you and so its still comfy to talk to passengers when cruising. its a convertible so its, of course a little harder to talk to people in the back with the top down. top up the cabin is very quiet and at highway speeds surprisingly pleasant even with the full exhaust and Cat delete. I live in Florida so when i'm driving the top is almost always down.

From a performance stand point its difficult for me to comment because of my limited experience with performance cars. I do believe the Tune and the mods to my car make up for the extra weight compared to the E90 and E92. I also feel that im really not that good of a driver to truly feel the 400 lbs in a car with this much power. I cant tell the difference when i drive alone or fully loaded. I would imagine that your average driver wouldn't notice the weight either. some people say they notice when going from an E92 to and E93, i believe them but have my skepticism as well. Although, I would imagine some people would notice the difference going from one E92 to a different E92. all cars drive different even of the same models. but again i consider myself an average driver. If you have a lot of experience with sports car Im sure you could find things that might not be right in the E93 but i cannot. to me it feels like a go cart when cornering and you can kick the rear out with ease in 2nd and 3rd (in the right revs) using only throttle. Slip the clutch in just about any gear with the traction control off and you no longer own the car, it owns you and you have to ask for control back.

Of all the crappy and nice cars ive owned this has been the most fun and precious for me to drive and i would say if you're torn between the 4 door and the vert then you need to drive both and see what happens but if you are looking for an overall amazing experience in most aspects of driving with the top up or the top down then the E93 is a great choice.

sorry for all the words, hope it helps.

-Mark
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      11-08-2019, 11:59 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiBimmer View Post
I agree that test drives are critical. I've driven 4 e90/2. I worry that 15 minutes in an E93 won't really tell me the story so I thought I'd reach out to owners.

I drive my S2000 top down as low 35 degrees as long as there is no salt. I store it from mid-December to March. If the heater in the E93 is as good as the S2000 I'd drive it too down on short trips above, I dunno, above 25 degrees as long as I'm not at highway speeds. I'm not some tough guy, far from it. I'll dress for weather a little colder than I otherwise would. I just find with a warm parka, gloves and a knit hat I'm good. I do put the windows up. Fall is my favorite time of year for driving.
I could have written this post! I had 2 S2000s at different times and always said the top is down unless the storm outside has a name. And I was in Seattle and Vancouver with them - not exactly sunny places! So I hear you on the top down desire. But if you’re keeping the S2, Id get a more practical version of the M.
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      11-08-2019, 02:51 PM   #15
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I have had an E93 and E90.

Honestly looking back I enjoyed the E93 more. It felt more like an occasion when taking it out with the top down and the amazing noise from the mods I had was just awesome.

With the tune and test pipes it felt pretty damn similar to the E90 in a straight line.

Corners are where you'll feel the difference right away. The weight is significant and readily apparent. This was only compounded when the car was full. With 4 full size adults its just about 5,000lbs haha.

Since you wont be taking this on track and more than likely never have all 4 seats occupied I wouldn't dwell on it though.

The E93 is an awesome car when it's used for it's intended purpose. Cruising top down, amplifying the already awesome noise from the S65, and still being able to hit the backroads and have fun.
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      11-08-2019, 09:57 PM   #16
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I own a e93 m3 and one of my close friends own a e90. I love the e93 because you still get that raw feeling while enjoying the top down luxury nothing comes close to that feeling. As for the e90 it is an amazing well built car. Weight differences you may feel on the track or in corners however the e90 does feel significantly less in weight daily driving
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      11-08-2019, 11:02 PM   #17
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E93 sounds like a good idea, but it’s not. I regret it, wish I would have gotten a e92.
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      11-09-2019, 07:06 AM   #18
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A big thanks to everyone who answered. I got a lot of different perspectives.
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      11-11-2019, 01:03 PM   #19
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Just adding to the opinions on this, I would definitely check out the backseat of the e93. Adjust the seats as they would be with you in the driver's seat and get in the back. And then with the passenger seat up all the way up. My concern with the back seat in convertibles is that they are often vestigial--so make sure you're good with the room. I have an e92 and although it can be a pain to get into the back seat, once there, it's pretty roomy.

Regarding the performance stuff, IMO, if you aren't tracking it or planning to spend time on a ton of technical back roads, I don't think it really matters. If you drive an e93 and love it, then you'll likely continue to love it down the road. Take the car on some twisty roads and the highway, then see what you think.
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      Yesterday, 06:01 PM   #20
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There’s nothing like top down motoring along your favorite back roads. It’s for this reason I like the E93 more than my 911 which was coupe. Yeah - it’ll cost you a few tenths at the track or at a stop-light, but this car isn’t slow and doesn’t feel it. Plus this generation M3 is all about the S65 and you’ll hear that much better without the roof.

I have my bias and I made my choice. For your stated needs I think you’ll be happy with the drop-top.
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      Today, 10:56 AM   #21
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I can see the appeal in an E93 M3. I currently have a E93 335i and an E90 M3 sedan. The chassis rigidity is noticeable, very noticeable. However this is not an apples to apples comparison as the 335i is a lot more effortless in its powerband so you don't notice the extra weight as much whereas in the M3 you gotta rev it up.

As far as E93, its well built. Wind-noise is non-existent, no B pillar is a really sleek touch with all the windows down. Make sure it's water tight though, my E93 always lets drops in from pressure washing.
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