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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 12-23-2012, 01:12 PM   #41
SilverThreeTwoFive
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Everyone on this thread is contradicting everyone else about if an XI is or is not better/worse than a regular E46....
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:42 PM   #42
CORVAIRWILD
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AWD is a complication no doubt, but even *** cars have probs. My Dad used to rent an office directly overlooking the local Honda service dept. He would report to me about all the wreckers dragging Honda's in... The was 20 years ago, he's long been towed away...

Hmmmm... I didn't type in the 3 stars... I used a an abbreviation for Japanese. This Forum self censors?
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:44 PM   #43
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Idk, let's find out. **** Yupp.

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Old 12-23-2012, 01:51 PM   #44
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Speaking of difficult to repair stuff... I was at a shop recently, and there was an '04 F150 having its entire dash tipped onto the seat to change the heater core, which had been done several months earlier. A China unit was used. I have an '84 Suburban, my daily driver. My previous '87 Sub needed a heater core, so the manual says RR RF fender. Wha??? On this rust bucket? So I studied the issue, and the carriage bolts have nuts behind the RF inner fender. Solution? Grind the heads off from the interior, using water spray bottle to extinguish sparks on carpet. I re attached the core box w self tapping screws. And the core was fine, the pipe had been scored when bent, and needed a simple solder repair. You can't buy good old heavy cores anymore, brass is too pricey.

I havn't ever taken a close look at ANY BMW, save for the one I worked on in the 80's, a 633 or something.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fastsoup View Post
This statement couldn't be closer to the truth. I was always fearful of owning a BMW because of the "rumors" regarding their reliability, so instead I bought Toyota, Lexus, Acura etc. Just one example ( of many ) of how much easier my e46 is to work on than lets say my IS300...my LP bulb need to have the entire trunk liner removed, then a nut here and a bolt there before I could access the bulb. E46...two screws and 10 seconds of my life later...it's done.

The BMW does require owners that appreciate their vehicles and take good care of them both mechanically and cosmetically. They are the best cars on the road for all around performance, look, and are outright sexy in the design department.
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Old 12-23-2012, 02:18 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by SilverThreeTwoFive View Post
Everyone on this thread is contradicting everyone else about if an XI is or is not better/worse than a regular E46....
I have both a 2001 330i and a 2005 325xi I love how both of them drive but the xi has better traction I have it stock it has better grip on picking up speed when accelerating and you could feel the difference on the curves. But im selling my xi.

Sent from my SGH-T999 using Bimmer App
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Old 12-23-2012, 03:42 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by MercForHire View Post
I told him to get a RWD manual e46 for maximum reliability and lowest cost of ownership.

Ix is just more weight. More gas consumption. Unnecessary 90% of the time.

My thoughts as well.

I originally bought a 325i and I loved it. Also had a 1999 Honda Civic si which I despised, so I decided to get rid of it and buy an XI to have for winter. The XI is nice, but it drives like crap compared to the I in the summer, it got 100km less per tank of fuel, and the front axles are not known for their longevity. And the axles are crazy expensive if you don't buy the knock offs that are known to last even less time. The XI always seemed to have a small shimmy in the front end I couldn't get rid of after 2 new axles.

So I finally got rid of the 325xi and replaced it with a 330ci. The RWD is no issue at all in the winter, put a set of Nokian Hakkas on%

Last edited by Viktimize; 12-23-2012 at 03:46 PM.
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Old 12-23-2012, 04:21 PM   #47
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Maybe I don't need AWD? I guess it depends on how much snow I try drive thru... I have several 4x Suburbans and a K5 Blazer. All diesel... The K5 has almost new chunky off road tires, but needs 1000 lbs of salt in the rear to counteract the weight of the snow plow for traction in RWD.

This will be a spare car, but if I need to use it in the snow, I can't stand getting stuck. I own an apt complex, and all to often see tenants spinning their tires getting thru minor snow. Interestingly, my '84 Suburban has better traction with almost bald tires than my '95 with brand new Falken Wildpeak's, both in RWD. I just repaired the front axle 4x engaging motor, so now can try the 4x traction, which I did yest in the few inches of snow we got in Stowe Vt where we are vacationing f a couple days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Viktimize View Post
My thoughts as well.

I originally bought a 325i and I loved it. Also had a 1999 Honda Civic si which I despised, so I decided to get rid of it and buy an XI to have for winter. The XI is nice, but it drives like crap compared to the I in the summer, it got 100km less per tank of fuel, and the front axles are not known for their longevity. And the axles are crazy expensive if you don't buy the knock offs that are known to last even less time. The XI always seemed to have a small shimmy in the front end I couldn't get rid of after 2 new axles.

So I finally got rid of the 325xi and replaced it with a 330ci. The RWD is no issue at all in the winter, put a set of Nokian Hakkas on%
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Old 12-24-2012, 07:45 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by CORVAIRWILD View Post
Maybe I don't need AWD? I guess it depends on how much snow I try drive thru... I have several 4x Suburbans and a K5 Blazer. All diesel... The K5 has almost new chunky off road tires, but needs 1000 lbs of salt in the rear to counteract the weight of the snow plow for traction in RWD.

This will be a spare car, but if I need to use it in the snow, I can't stand getting stuck. I own an apt complex, and all to often see tenants spinning their tires getting thru minor snow. Interestingly, my '84 Suburban has better traction with almost bald tires than my '95 with brand new Falken Wildpeak's, both in RWD. I just repaired the front axle 4x engaging motor, so now can try the 4x traction, which I did yest in the few inches of snow we got in Stowe Vt where we are vacationing f a couple days.
I don't know where you live? But if you look at my location you can see I live in one of the worst North American spots for winter driving conditions(besides Alaska and NWT). I have zero issues getting around in winter with the RWD while running the Nokian tires. My last set wore out and I cheaped out with some Nexens this year, it still manages just fine, never been stuck yet.
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Old 12-24-2012, 09:30 PM   #49
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I live in the Adirondacks where it used to snow, and I sure enjoyed the sure footedness of my 4x Suburban this weekend, and we just had just a couple inches of snow, but it sure was slippery.

I suppose I could try a RWD E46, an sell it if I'm not happy. What could I do to strengthen the rear springs if I add 200 lbs of rock salt?
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Old 12-25-2012, 07:46 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CORVAIRWILD View Post
I live in the Adirondacks where it used to snow, and I sure enjoyed the sure footedness of my 4x Suburban this weekend, and we just had just a couple inches of snow, but it sure was slippery.

I suppose I could try a RWD E46, an sell it if I'm not happy. What could I do to strengthen the rear springs if I add 200 lbs of rock salt?
The car is perfectly balanced, there shouldn't be any need for sand like there would be in a truck that has no weight in the back.
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Old 12-25-2012, 08:09 PM   #51
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Yeah but nothing beats weight for traction. I've lived here all my life. I've been stuck in enuff snowbanks to appreciate AWD or extra traction from weight over the rear wheels. I don't mean to get into an argument... but been there, done that.. and this will be primarily a winter car, when I need something smaller than a Suburban.

BTW, the Bimmer that my friend loves so much is a '97 528 w 180,000 miles. I just spoke to him, he still loves it. He bot it cheap for a winter car, and is on winter 3. I've never seen it, but ma b sometime this winter he'll come visit. He doesn't do internet, so no pix, shame
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Old 12-25-2012, 08:16 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by Viktimize View Post
The car is perfectly balanced, there shouldn't be any need for sand like there would be in a truck that has no weight in the back.
A bit of weight could help, especially when braking. If I have to stop particularly quick in the snow, my tail has the tendency to slide a little.
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Old 12-25-2012, 08:18 PM   #53
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I just can't see a RWd giving me the traction I need. I love fishtailing, but I'm too old and grey lol
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Old 12-30-2012, 01:17 AM   #54
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The right tires will give you the traction you need. I don't mean get a set of winter tires. I mean get a set of STUDDED NOKIAN HAKKAPALITA tires.

If you truely feel you need an XI then go for it. I was just telling you I've had both cars at the same time, driven in the worst of winter conditions, and I choose the RWD model. But now you know what you're up against, XI will be more money and less availability.
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Old 12-30-2012, 07:17 AM   #55
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I agree an xi AWD 5 speed wagon is a needle in a haystack, especially in a dry climate, and someone willing to sell to me so far away. same I missed the one in San Diego. I'm in no rush at all
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Old 02-01-2013, 12:27 AM   #56
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So I've missed a few wagons, all auto trans and was chatting w a dealer friend near Syracuse NY, and told hm I was looking for a black black AWD wagon, and a few hours later tells me he's sitting in one at the car auction!

So I spoke w the seller a couple hours ago, and it's a 2003, got 160k and needs rear struts and a water pump. As is $3600, or he'll quote me repaired as it's several hundred miles away. Mind you it's an auto trans, but the 5 speed is so rare, and at this price, I don't think I can go wrong! Tires are recentish too... 4 new calipers and pads, MASS sensor too I believe.

So what should a WP cost? And rear struts? I may do them myself... I was a mechanic for years, but never worked on any BMW's
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Old 02-01-2013, 01:16 AM   #57
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You are a mechanic (was) for years, and I find it interesting that you post for someone to tell you what a Water Pump would cost?, Rear Struts? And you do the work yourself. Something is very wrong here that YOU 1. do not have a good idea of about how much these items cost, 2. do not have the ability to instantly look it up on the internet, 3. are asking as if this is the consideration for purchase of this BMW car for you.
I followed this series of emails by you, and sense that the only answer to you regarding your original question--- should you buy a BMW ---is NO. Everything you are indicating shows me that you have no appreciation of the BMW car name, are not going to be happy, and are a bit on the $$$ money side tight--so indicated by your current question on the WP cost. Don't do it, this is not the car for YOU. And I kind of thought that from the original posting with a name such as CORVAIRwild ("UNSAFE at any speed"). Not sure that a Corvair lover can ever mix with a BMW person.
To anyone else, I would say that I love BMW's, only would consider manual (you seem to be indifferent to that), and the BMW's I have had go over 250k (provided you do proper PM) ---100% reliable as a everyday car (even at 250k), starts every morning, but not great in snow, and is in a different world from a Corvair in every way--especially in performance and handling. Personally I would not get a XI car, I suspect that from everything I have heard over the years, that is not as reliable and care free for the long run as the other E46's--but many would disagree. My current E46 is a 2000 with over 215k, and runs and looks like the day I bought it new.
Last thought--your RIDE is now a Diesel Suburban --just a further confirmation to me that a BMW is a car you will never be happy with. Don't let the cost of the WP at $60 or at $200 be your deciding factor since there are so many other considerations. You are miles away from even understanding the differences between types of WP---or even doing a search on this site regarding numerous posting on WP differences and other topics.
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Old 02-01-2013, 01:25 AM   #58
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A RWD E46 with DSC is still surprisingly good in the snow. You just have to remember how heavy your car is and drive accordingly. I considered an XI briefly since I live at 5000 elevation, but opted for the tried and true manual RWD combo out of reliability and weight concerns. Haven't ever regretted it.

If you weren't doing the work yourself, I'd say go Subie. Since you are, go E46. Also, I hope you're not set on a wagon. Most people agree, they're ugly, so they are much, much fewer and father between.
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Old 02-01-2013, 01:44 AM   #59
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Originally Posted by CORVAIRWILD View Post
So I've missed a few wagons, all auto trans and was chatting w a dealer friend near Syracuse NY, and told hm I was looking for a black black AWD wagon, and a few hours later tells me he's sitting in one at the car auction!

So I spoke w the seller a couple hours ago, and it's a 2003, got 160k and needs rear struts and a water pump. As is $3600, or he'll quote me repaired as it's several hundred miles away. Mind you it's an auto trans, but the 5 speed is so rare, and at this price, I don't think I can go wrong! Tires are recentish too... 4 new calipers and pads, MASS sensor too I believe.

So what should a WP cost? And rear struts? I may do them myself... I was a mechanic for years, but never worked on any BMW's
At 160k miles and the WP is out then it'd be a good idea to redo the whole thing, radiator included, will cost you under $500 if you do it yourself. Rear shocks (not struts) will cost between $30-200 each depending on what brand you go with and they take maybe 2 hours to install.

It sounds like a good deal at the price, but I wouldn't go for it unless it's a sport package (better seats and steering wheel). Also at that mileage the autotrans can become problematic from what I've read on here, but if you want manual anyway I wouldn't see that as a con, at this price you could run it until the trans dies then swap it with a manual transmission
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Old 02-01-2013, 06:59 AM   #60
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Originally Posted by jayb328i View Post
You are a mechanic (was) for years, and I find it interesting that you post for someone to tell you what a Water Pump would cost?, Rear Struts? And you do the work yourself. Something is very wrong here that YOU 1. do not have a good idea of about how much these items cost, 2. do not have the ability to instantly look it up on the internet, 3. are asking as if this is the consideration for purchase of this BMW car for you.
I followed this series of emails by you, and sense that the only answer to you regarding your original question--- should you buy a BMW ---is NO. Everything you are indicating shows me that you have no appreciation of the BMW car name, are not going to be happy, and are a bit on the $$$ money side tight--so indicated by your current question on the WP cost. Don't do it, this is not the car for YOU. And I kind of thought that from the original posting with a name such as CORVAIRwild ("UNSAFE at any speed"). Not sure that a Corvair lover can ever mix with a BMW person.
To anyone else, I would say that I love BMW's, only would consider manual (you seem to be indifferent to that), and the BMW's I have had go over 250k (provided you do proper PM) ---100% reliable as a everyday car (even at 250k), starts every morning, but not great in snow, and is in a different world from a Corvair in every way--especially in performance and handling. Personally I would not get a XI car, I suspect that from everything I have heard over the years, that is not as reliable and care free for the long run as the other E46's--but many would disagree. My current E46 is a 2000 with over 215k, and runs and looks like the day I bought it new.
Last thought--your RIDE is now a Diesel Suburban --just a further confirmation to me that a BMW is a car you will never be happy with. Don't let the cost of the WP at $60 or at $200 be your deciding factor since there are so many other considerations. You are miles away from even understanding the differences between types of WP---or even doing a search on this site regarding numerous posting on WP differences and other topics.
Jeez, lighten up dude...

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