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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 04-07-2012, 10:33 PM   #1
mcaltinsoy
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Premium Gas or Unleaded for -04 330ci-

Hey everyone, i just bought my 330ci a few days ago. I always had japanese cars before. BMW seems like a different language to me nowadays. My question is it says on my fuel gauge Unleaded gas ... but anyone out there using premium at all?
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Old 04-07-2012, 10:33 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by mcaltinsoy View Post
Hey everyone, i just bought my 330ci a few days ago. I always had japanese cars before. BMW seems like a different language to me nowadays. My question is it says on my fuel gauge Unleaded gas ... but anyone out there using premium at all?
Christ dude, only put premium in it.

Last edited by brontosaurus; 04-07-2012 at 10:39 PM.
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Old 04-07-2012, 10:34 PM   #3
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All gas is unleaded...
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Old 04-07-2012, 10:35 PM   #4
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Old 04-07-2012, 10:40 PM   #5
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You want Unleaded (which is all they sell as far as I know) and AT LEAST Premium 91+ octane.
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Old 04-07-2012, 10:41 PM   #6
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¡¡¡LMFAO!!! Classic!!! Welcome to E46Fanatics! My friend, be sure to consult ur manual (and I'm this caseur fuel door) first before asking those kinda ?s smh n still lmfao!!!

Sent from my Samsung Galaxy using Bimmer App
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Old 04-07-2012, 10:45 PM   #7
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Can you actually run 89 regular unleaded in it though....yes you can. Not the best and altitude plays a part in octane.

Buying a car that you have no idea on what type of gas you need....classic. You might want to check out some threads on what repair bills might cost and what parts you need to replace for PM. Also....check out the oil change requirements. This site will give you what you need if you dig. Try the search button. Please read the manual if there is still one in your car. If not, there is one posted on here somewhere in a thread to download.
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Old 04-07-2012, 10:54 PM   #8
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You'll be fine running regular unleaded.

If you find any leaded gas, I'm sure the EPA has a bounty out for that kind of thing.
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Old 04-08-2012, 10:51 AM   #9
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You'll be fine running regular unleaded.

If you find any leaded gas, I'm sure the EPA has a bounty out for that kind of thing.
LEADED GAS will kill the CAT. Period.
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Old 04-08-2012, 11:10 AM   #10
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LEADED GAS will kill the CAT. Period.
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Old 04-07-2012, 11:02 PM   #11
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You can run with regular unleaded, the car's sensors and engine management computer can adjust for different levels of octane. But it's recommended to use premium. The owner's manual states you might notice decreased performance and less mpg. If you're too cheap to buy premium (which is the recommended fuel for your car) then maybe a BMW isn't for you. Honda's don't require premium, or Hyundai's.
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Old 04-07-2012, 11:06 PM   #12
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You can run with regular unleaded, the car's sensors and engine management computer can adjust for different levels of octane. But it's recommended to use premium. The owner's manual states you might notice decreased performance and less mpg. If you're too cheap to buy premium (which is the recommended fuel for your car) then maybe a BMW isn't for you. Honda's don't require premium, or Hyundai's.
your butt dyno isn't sensitive enough to miss the 2-3 peak hp loss you may suffer while trolling the streets in your 323.

Cadillacs don't require premium, either. Unless you're buying a V.
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Old 04-07-2012, 11:37 PM   #13
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your butt dyno isn't sensitive enough to miss the 2-3 peak hp loss you may suffer while trolling the streets in your 323.

Cadillacs don't require premium, either. Unless you're buying a V.
Looks like I struck a nerve there..

Anyways, the engineers figured there would be cheap a$$es out there or idiots who don't want to trust (or read their owners manual) what BMW has spent millions and possibly billions into research finding out what their engines run best on.

But, obviously you are smarter than BMW engineers.
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Old 04-07-2012, 11:16 PM   #14
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It says use 91 octane minimum

Open your owners manual and read.

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Old 04-07-2012, 11:23 PM   #15
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had some girl behind me pumping gas into her e46, i happened to notice she was putting regular in there and i was like you know you're only supposed to put premium in there, she was like oh sh!t and stopped, asked me what will happen and i told her the engine will blow up she was like holy fvck i just got this car 3 days ago
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Old 04-07-2012, 11:26 PM   #16
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had some girl behind me pumping gas into her e46, i happened to notice she was putting regular in there and i was like you know you're only supposed to put premium in there, she was like oh sh!t and stopped, asked me what will happen and i told her the engine will blow up she was like holy fvck i just got this car 3 days ago
classic!
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Old 04-07-2012, 11:26 PM   #17
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OP, here's how to test:

1. Put in regular unleaded.
2. Listen for engine knocking/pinging
3. If no knocking/pinging, you're good.

4. If knocking/pinging, take car to mechanic for diagnosis. Possibly bad knock sensors.
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Old 04-07-2012, 11:44 PM   #18
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Again 91 octane nazis rule the board.
87 is fine, save your money.
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Old 04-08-2012, 01:44 AM   #19
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Again 91 octane nazis rule the board.
87 is fine, save your money.
The Car will adapt to changes in octane AS LONG AS THE Knock Sensors are working. If there is an issue with them the car will default to ignition timing map for 91 RON octane.

Our US Octane ratings are R+M/2 or the average of the Research and Motor octanes. (91 RON is about the same as 87 AKI used in the US)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Octane_rating

http://www.bmw-planet.com/diagrams/r.../e46/index.htm
Self-diagnosis and emergency operation of the knock control system

Self-diagnosis of the knock control system includes following checks:
Check for sensor signal interference/line break, plug connector defective etc.
Self-test of entire evaluation circuit
Check of basic engine noise level detected by the knock sensor

The knock control system is switched off if a fault is found during the course of one of these checks. The emergency program adopts the task of controlling the ignition timing. At the same time, a defect code is stored in the defect code memory. The emergency program ensures damage-free operation as from minimum RON 91. It depends on the engine load, speed and temperature.
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Old 04-08-2012, 01:57 AM   #20
MercForHire
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The Car will adapt to changes in octane AS LONG AS THE Knock Sensors are working. If there is an issue with them the car will default to ignition timing map for 91 RON octane.

Our US Octane ratings are R+M/2 or the average of the Research and Motor octanes. (91 RON is about the same as 87 AKI used in the US)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Octane_rating

http://www.bmw-planet.com/diagrams/r.../e46/index.htm
Self-diagnosis and emergency operation of the knock control system

Self-diagnosis of the knock control system includes following checks:
Check for sensor signal interference/line break, plug connector defective etc.
Self-test of entire evaluation circuit
Check of basic engine noise level detected by the knock sensor

The knock control system is switched off if a fault is found during the course of one of these checks. The emergency program adopts the task of controlling the ignition timing. At the same time, a defect code is stored in the defect code memory. The emergency program ensures damage-free operation as from minimum RON 91. It depends on the engine load, speed and temperature.
Great info but there have been no reports of the knock sensors malfunction yet.
If someone has so little faith in every component of their e46 and is forced to use 91 out of fear. Then please, sell the German piece of sh1t.
Quote:
http://www.e46fanatics.com/forum/sho...=568436&page=2

Hate to tell you guys this but I have been running regular gas in my car for the last 160,000 miles and yet to have a problem. MY car currently has 200,000 miles and runs like a champ. It purrs like a kitten no pinging either.

Oh by the way I get 32mpg on the highway and 24-6 in mixed driving.

I have tried premium gas weeks at a time and saw no noticeable difference in the performance or engine noise or mileage.

Anyone who says your engine will run like crap and will get horrible gas mileage is full of crraaaaaap. If you are willing to pay 15-30 cents extra per gallon to get 1-2 extra hp out of your engine by all means go ahead and spend your money. I am a car nut and I love the speed and power but if I cant feel a difference, I am not blowing my money away. If you think that your precious BMW engine is designed for 91 octane and will crap out with anything less, try going to other countries. BMW sells worldwide and you would be lucky to get a quality gas with 91 octane in other countries. BMW designs their engines to run in all countries with less than ideal gas quality. 87 octane here would be a top notch gas in some other countries.

Again you can argue until the forum database craps out but in the end I have the proof in my garage. 200,000 miles with regular gas, NO ENGINE PROBLEMS, NO KNOCKING AND GREAT PERFORMANCE SO FAR. You can't argue with facts. As far as I am concerned Premium gas is nothing but a marketing gimmick for cars less than a Porsche. It is just a way of making BMW, LEXUS, MB owners feel special. Especially when you take in the fact that Lexus and Toyota camry uses the same engine and Lexus requires premium and Camry regular.

Unless you have high compression engine, running super/turbo charger or have a chip installed Premium gas will only save you mileage by reducing the weight of your car by lighting your wallet.

I remember reading a test for Premium gas making extra 9-11hp for a Porsche 911S which has a very high compression engine. If it only makes 10hp for a 350hp car that has 11:8 compression ratio, do you really think it will add 5-10 hp in your 220hp cars? You are lucky if you get 2 hp which you can gain by getting rid 10-20 lbs of junk in your car(buy a light battery, remove junk from the truck, better remove the full spare tire) .

Last edited by MercForHire; 04-08-2012 at 01:58 AM.
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