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-   -   Need help choosing 330i / 328 (http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=941834)

sdm56@gmx.com 08-30-2012 05:39 PM

Need help choosing 330i / 328
I am looking for 330CI / 328 automatic Black or Blue. 2003-2006. I love the lines of this Car.
Please let me know if any or all of the info I have heard so far is correct.
I have been told by a BMW mech. (Jack F. at Pro BMW Van Nuys, CA) to stay away from Auto-manual, paddle shifters "They can be problematic". SMS I believe they are called. And that "the automatics (made in France?) need rebuilding every 80-90k miles". I live in L.A. traffic (AKA Hell.A. traffic) I've done the shifting thing... and it bites.
My questions are...
Are there any years (E46, 1999-2006) to stay away from?
Or... Are certain years better than others?
Yes I know I said 2003 min. However older is less $ and I will find a way if they are better.
Also, worth noting, I have some friends saying I'm nuts and "go buy a practical car". Already done that... I'm too old for that. And my $ are limited. And REALLY would like this (My First BWM) to be a good experience. So any help or input is greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance... Soon to be BMW Owner. SDM

E46_330i_Stud 08-30-2012 05:50 PM

Your post made my brain hurt. I know this isn't what you wanted to hear but, "I'm trying to spend as little money as possible" is key word, "I can't afford a BMW". Sorry to burst your bubble. After buying an E46, plan on spending $2k right off the bat to address any problems it has as well as get it up to date on maintenance. These cars will leave you high and dry quickly if you have a limited budget.

To answer one of your questions, stay away from 99-00's if you can. Subframe issue as well as a reverse issue in the autos seems to be more prominent in those years.

sdm56@gmx.com 08-30-2012 06:39 PM

Thanks for your response. I suppose I'm spoiled from driving vehicles that do not require much Maintenace. Seems performance has its price.

E46_330i_Stud 08-30-2012 07:25 PM

Think of it this way. Can you afford $60-70 oil changes if you do it yourself? Or $600+ for a coolant system, $500 for the bushings that need to be replaced, etc. It adds up quick. I'd advise going for an Acura or something where you get a little of both worlds.

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