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Old 03-27-2015, 03:34 PM   #1
danifami
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330ci turbo or m3

Okay guys. Before everyone freaks out. When I was 18 I had a 2003 330ci manual with 130k miles and f****** loved it. I'm now 20 and in the navy. It's time for a new car and I would love a m3 but for some reason I like the 330ci body better...and would love to have my old car again and do everything I wanted to do with it. So my question is. Is it worth turboing/lowering/stiffening everything on a 330ci or just plain out buying an m3?
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Old 03-27-2015, 03:36 PM   #2
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What's going to be cheaper? M3

what's going to be better? whatever you want =)
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Old 03-27-2015, 03:41 PM   #3
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Well, you probably will spend the same money on modifying the 330 to perform like the M3 but you'll still be missing things like the limited slip diff. Most people here will probably tell you it would be dumb to do that, but I personally think it's all about preference. Since you like the look of the non-M better that's a point in favor of the 330. I'm also a fan of making a car your own. A modified 330 will be much more a reflection of what you like vs a showroom stock M3 that anybody could buy. Since you'd be turboing (or supercharging) the 330 the difference in maintenance is lessened, but if you do it right and stay on top of it you might still do better overall with the 330 since you aren't paying the m-parts premium and still won't need to do things like valve adjustments. Unless you're racing it professionally the things you miss out on by not getting the M likely won't really matter.

I say go for the 330ci and make it exactly what you want.
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Old 03-27-2015, 03:41 PM   #4
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Well a very quick not so accurate breakdown
330 12k
Supercharger/turbo 5 k
Suspension and handling 2k
Cooling system and what not 2k?? So 21 k for the 330 and then the m3s I was looking at were anywhere from 18k to 25k

Last edited by danifami; 03-27-2015 at 03:42 PM.
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Old 03-27-2015, 03:44 PM   #5
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After reading your two responses I'm thinking I'm going to go with the 330ci and personalize it to my liking. Thank you for the feedback.
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Old 03-27-2015, 03:50 PM   #6
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Check to see if Nick G. is still selling his TT Turbo 330.


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Old 03-27-2015, 04:27 PM   #7
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Don't forget that you will need to reinforce your entire rear subframe
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Old 03-27-2015, 04:42 PM   #8
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Don't forget that you will need to reinforce your entire rear subframe
Throw an entire M3 rear end assembly on after reinforcing the subframe to get all the goodies as well. That's getting 2 birds stoned with 1 rock
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Old 03-27-2015, 04:46 PM   #9
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Throw an entire M3 rear end assembly on after reinforcing the subframe to get all the goodies as well. That's getting 2 birds stoned with 1 rock
Believe it or not, the "entire M3 rear end" would be counter productive in this situation.



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Old 03-27-2015, 05:47 PM   #10
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Less problems long term going with m3 imo
330 wasnt built for F/I
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Old 03-28-2015, 12:50 AM   #11
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Go for turbo!

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Old 03-28-2015, 01:42 AM   #12
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Stock M3. Turbo 330ci E46 is not for everyone - it can be heavy on maintenance and surely not cheaper than M3. Either way, these are old cars now, don't buy them if you have to rely on a loan or credit.
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Old 03-28-2015, 11:08 AM   #13
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Stock M3. Turbo 330ci E46 is not for everyone - it can be heavy on maintenance and surely not cheaper than M3. Either way, these are old cars now, don't buy them if you have to rely on a loan or credit.
We have a 97 328is and a 01 540. I'm quite familiar with the maintenance
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Old 03-28-2015, 11:48 AM   #14
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If you are doing that much to a 330, you probably don't need to spend $12k on one. You can buy a decent one for like $6k and do all the maintenance on it and come out better on the end. If you are adding forced induction, maybe buy a cheap one and then buy a 2nd motor and rebuild it on the side to be more reliable. It's way easier to do all the maintenance on it when it's out of the car.
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Old 03-28-2015, 12:01 PM   #15
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look up mike benvo on youtube



he had a sc 330 that fin killed modded m3's


it can be done, maybe with the m3 up keep, it's worth it on a 330

the m54 is alot more user friendly , i dunno

i'd just get z06
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Old 03-28-2015, 12:03 PM   #16
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Less problems long term going with m3 imo
330 wasnt built for F/I
m54 doesn't need rod bearings all the time


and the m54 handles f/i just fine
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Old 03-28-2015, 12:19 PM   #17
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330 Turbo.
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Old 03-28-2015, 07:05 PM   #18
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Or buy a cheap coupe and put a s54 turbo in it. Best of both worlds lol
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