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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 02-06-2010, 06:39 PM   #1
330iZHPftw
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E46 330i ZHP or E90 330i Sport

all of those whom have experience with either or both -- please let me know which you believe to be the better value/better reliable DD car/overall more pleasing of a car to own as a daily driver. Obviously the ZHP (if one can find an unadulterated version) will be $2-5 thousand cheaper. Please no E36 or E46 M3 owners need supply their comments. We all know that both will handle better/out-perform and we both Know that the former mentioned will in the end be the better value/cheaper as a daily driver. Thanks for you thoughts!
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Old 02-06-2010, 06:45 PM   #2
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I feel like this is going to turn into a pretty heated debate soon, so before that happens, let me say... E90. It's newer, IMO has a better exterior (not as nice interior), has a better, more solid feel to it (IMO) and I think it drives a little better as well. The E46 is going out. It's a fact. They are excellent cars, don't get me wrong, but the newest one you can buy is '06. I say get the E90.
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Old 02-06-2010, 06:48 PM   #3
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if it were a coupe i say ZHP. but for a sedan i say E90
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Old 02-06-2010, 06:54 PM   #4
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Removed to appease whiney OP.

Don't forget the function

Last edited by ALPIN3; 02-06-2010 at 07:03 PM.
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Old 02-06-2010, 06:56 PM   #5
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Out of necessity I need to get the sedan (that is why I'm excluding E46 M3 owners from this thread). Also, I'm not what so ever interested in your thoughts of which car is more appealing based on exterior styling. Be it that they're both BMW's I've found myself struck by both they're exterior designs. I'm really after the facts of which only specified owners can provide: which car is more fun to drive, which car is more reliable, which car is the better value. I'm coming from only having owned SUV's prior to this (excluding an old MT Eclipse). I am seeking to purchase my fist real car now that I have some money to put into it. I want a sports sedan. Am very interested in European design and am 100% sold on BMW's. Previous owners please enlighten me based on prior experience as to which I should "invest" my money in.
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Old 02-06-2010, 06:58 PM   #6
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If you're looking for upgrade potential then definitely the ZHP because the E90 330i has nothing. The engine was made for only one year before BMW went FI. Just go for an 07 335 if you want an E90
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Old 02-06-2010, 06:59 PM   #7
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Here's old posts that covers the subject:
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=180081
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=104901 <- gets alittle of the subject


For me, it was a must have an '05 330 ZHP ..for the distinctive body style/6-speed/face-lift and black on black.
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Old 02-06-2010, 09:52 PM   #8
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You need to drive both, ideally back-to-back.

The E90 is technologically superior--that's an objective fact. It has a more capable suspension layout and a more advanced engine design (more power, flatter torque delivery curve, slightly superior efficiency). The chassis will better protect the vehicle's occupants in a collision. These are incremental improvements, but improvements nevertheless.

However, the E90 is also another very big step down BMW's road to Buickdom. The traditional BMW DNA is still evident, but the overall experience is undeniably muted. The 330i with ZHP has a substantially more aggressive feel--it has a fast steering rack, and it's lighter, louder, and very nearly as fast as the E90 in a straight line.

Which will be more reliable? Who knows. By the time a car is 5 or 6 years old, previous maintenance and use are just as significant as anything else, so it varies from car to car. The E90 is still too new for all of the particularly nasty problems to show themselves; all of the common problems on the E46 chassis are well-documented. The E46 will be easier to work on (it's a simpler machine). Insurance and fuel should be a wash.
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Old 02-07-2010, 12:18 AM   #9
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If you're looking for comfort and high tech features then i'd say go for the E90 but maintenance should be costlier simply because it has more electronics than an E46, If you're looking for driver involvement,driving satisfaction, more tuning/mod options, cheaper maintenance then go for the E46 imo.
Fyi you can't turbo or SC an N52B30 found on the E90 330i while the M54B30 found on the e46 have quite a few options on the market.

Having said the only bmw range on the E90 that i would go for rather than the E46 330i would be the E90 335i ...
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