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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 10-14-2011, 12:39 PM   #1
Chocolate Lab
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Thinking of moving to an e90... Positives and negatives?

E92 actually.

I'm sure this has been discussed a bunch and I did some searching, but would people mind giving my a few quick positives and negatives to the e90/92 versus the e46?

I drove one a couple years ago and felt it was borderline too "luxurious" and not sporty enough, but the car frankly was more than I wanted to pay and I knew that going in. Drove another one yesterday that looks to be a good deal and kind of had the same feeling. But maybe that's just because I'm so used to my e46. And to be honest, I'm having a hard time finding another e46 that has lower miles like I'd prefer.

What concerns me as much as anything about the e9x are the things I've heard about not being able to change the battery without going to the dealer... Not having a dipstick to use an oil extractor (as I have for 100,000 miles now)... That kind of thing. Are they that much more difficult to DIY?

Thanks for any thoughts.
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Old 10-14-2011, 12:45 PM   #2
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You cannot DIY. Period.
And get the sport package, or suffer a Toyota like feel.
If you have any specific questions I might be able to answer them as my dad has an e90 so I'm familiar with them
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Old 10-14-2011, 12:48 PM   #3
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love the interiors... the only way i'll get one clearly is if its a 335i coupe, 6 speed, with sport package... that is a must

depending on the year, keep an eye out for the fuel pump recall, make sure its been maintained and fixed if need be... also, in the earlier years, you'll need an oil cooler which they should have installed at the dealer for free, and i think there was a small issue with the wastegates...

just do your research and you should be good
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Old 10-14-2011, 01:01 PM   #4
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I have both. Keep the E46.
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sometimes i'm into it and my one hand gets tired, i try switching, but then it's like someone with lou gehrig's trying to peel a carrot.
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Old 10-14-2011, 01:09 PM   #5
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We have a 00 E46 with ~327,000 miles and a 06 E90 with ~93,000 miles. I can DIY both, however it takes twice the time to perform simple DIY's on the E90 than it does on the E46. Fortunately we purchased an extended warranty on the E90 because it has had less issues but the issue were much more expensive and covered under warranty. If you're not buying new I would strongly recommend an after-market warranty. Just my two and a half cents worth...
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Old 10-14-2011, 01:37 PM   #6
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Thanks for the replies, guys...

Peyton -- Yes, that's about the feeling I got, too. Don't guess either one I drove had the sports package. Is there an obvious way to tell?

JJR -- I prefer the coupe, too... In fact, it's the first BMW 3-series I remember where I clearly like the coupe better. Don't care for the sedan too much.

Tate -- Can you elaborate a little?

Zchild -- That's what I was afraid of.

Maybe I'll just keep mine or find a newer e46. Only reason I feel like I should start finding a newer car is that mine has 168k now and, while I'm not out on the highway by myself like I used to be a lot, I still am sometimes. If I were only driving around in town, I'd just keep mine as I still like it and it seems hard to find the same black/black/sport/premium/MT combo that I have now.

Last edited by Chocolate Lab; 10-14-2011 at 01:39 PM.
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Old 10-14-2011, 01:41 PM   #7
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Upgrading from a 328i to a e92 would probably be amazing. Just be sure to get an extended warranty with the car because i heard e90/e92 are hard to work on. But if its a black/black 335is with sport and premium package i say go for it. Those cars are sick, even is its just a 328is get it
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Old 10-14-2011, 02:02 PM   #8
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I had the E9X as a loaner and liked my e46 much better.
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Old 10-14-2011, 02:12 PM   #9
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Obvious way to tell... It'll be a freaking blast to drive.
All 330's have the sport package. It includes a lot.
Different steering. Steering wheel. Adjustable side bolster on seats. 18" wheels. Run flat tires.
Aluminum something in the engine creates more power. The 328 and 330 both have a 3.0 liter engine but the 330 has the sport package boosting the power up to 255 with an aluminum head or something.
As far as a 335 I would assume they all have zsp (sport package) but idk.

The 328 is a waste. Seriously. I'd rather have a Honda. And I'm not kidding. It's not a BMW and unfortunately it's the impression that most people get of the e90 series as it's the entry level car. Hence all the e9x hating around here
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Old 10-14-2011, 02:23 PM   #10
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I didn't know the E92 328i was such a sh!tty car. I've always wanted one b/c of the looks but now I'd have to reconsider. Might stop by the local dealership to test drive just for grins.
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Old 10-14-2011, 02:49 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peytonracer4 View Post
You cannot DIY. Period.

This is exactly my concern about newer cars overall and BMW in particular. As a DIYer I can't have a car that I can't fix myself, especially when we are talking about German cars and their greedy stealerships.
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Old 10-14-2011, 02:54 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by peytonracer4 View Post
Obvious way to tell... It'll be a freaking blast to drive.
All 330's have the sport package. It includes a lot.
Different steering. Steering wheel. Adjustable side bolster on seats. 18" wheels. Run flat tires.
Aluminum something in the engine creates more power. The 328 and 330 both have a 3.0 liter engine but the 330 has the sport package boosting the power up to 255 with an aluminum head or something.
As far as a 335 I would assume they all have zsp (sport package) but idk.

The 328 is a waste. Seriously. I'd rather have a Honda. And I'm not kidding. It's not a BMW and unfortunately it's the impression that most people get of the e90 series as it's the entry level car. Hence all the e9x hating around here
Both I drove actually were 328, and your Honda comment isn't that far off from what I experienced. This recent one actually had manual seat adjustments, which doesn't really matter to me (my old e36 318 had that) but I thought it was a little odd. Definitely felt a bit cheap compared to what I was expecting.

Also, I forgot to mention this, but the previous owner had replaced the stock run-flats with regular tires, as a lot of people do. I can't imagine having a simple flat and having to call a wrecker!

Last edited by Chocolate Lab; 10-14-2011 at 02:56 PM.
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Old 10-14-2011, 10:38 PM   #13
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If you're buying one used and the person has put non runflats on a car that originally came with them be warned of this. There is no spare.
The reason people switch is to eliminate the harsh ride and cut cost. The exact same tread tire in a non runflat is a fraction of the cost of it's runflat brother. So keep in mind when buying, if it doesn't have runflats, buy a space saver donut kit with a jack included and keep it with you.
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Old 10-14-2011, 10:57 PM   #14
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Why? The F30 is here....
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Old 10-14-2011, 11:37 PM   #15
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168K doesnt mean anything! All cars are time bombs no matter the mileage. Performing proper maintenance just extends the fuse on said time bomb. So if your engine blows up tomorrow you can buy a civic for $1k to drive while you swap/rebuild your engine. Then you sell your civic for more than a grand. Then you have a car with known good parts (from the recent engine rebuild to whatever you have done in the past) that you enjoy and don't own any money on.
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Old 10-15-2011, 12:14 AM   #16
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The 328 is a waste. Seriously. I'd rather have a Honda. And I'm not kidding. It's not a BMW...
Would you just keep quiet, seriously. Have you driven an E90 328i w/ 6MT & Sport Package? It's the last of the NA I6 motors, and it's a great car, especially if equipped w/ the M-sport package. Who are you to comment on this car, considering the dinosaur vehicle you're driving?
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Old 10-15-2011, 12:25 AM   #17
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Ha-ha, snap!
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Old 10-15-2011, 12:47 AM   #18
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Would you just keep quiet, seriously. Have you driven an E90 328i w/ 6MT & Sport Package? It's the last of the NA I6 motors, and it's a great car, especially if equipped w/ the M-sport package. Who are you to comment on this car, considering the dinosaur vehicle you're driving?
uh yeah i have driven them. in fact i've driven every bmw in the current pre 2012 linup. so before you speak you should shut it.
if you read the thread, at all, you'll notice i was talking about the entry level 328 with no sport package or anything.
don't assume my car in my sig is the only car i've ever driven, or even the only car i own. because it's not.

i was simply referring to the base line model. i'm willing to bet people don't get rentals and courtesy cars that have m-sport packages.
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Old 10-15-2011, 01:05 AM   #19
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uh yeah i have driven them. in fact i've driven every bmw in the current pre 2012 linup. so before you speak you should shut it.
if you read the thread, at all, you'll notice i was talking about the entry level 328 with no sport package or anything.
don't assume my car in my sig is the only car i've ever driven, or even the only car i own. because it's not.

i was simply referring to the base line model. i'm willing to bet people don't get rentals and courtesy cars that have m-sport packages.
Nowhere in this thread did you specify 'non-sport' when talking about the E90. I find it comical you say the E90 328i is 'not a BMW' - it's exactly what a BMW should be. Inline 6, naturally aspirated, available w/ 6MT. If you exclude the meat heads just looking for straight out performance, the 328i is more BMW than the 335i from a heritage standpoint.

And many of us here have driven the current E9x lineup...
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Old 10-15-2011, 01:57 AM   #20
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well if i didn't clearly state, i was talking about the cars that most people have had experiences with. which would be the base model courtesy cars or "cheap" entry level models.
when i say it isn't a bmw i'm talking about the feel. without the sport package (on base model) it seriously feels like a toyota/honda.

i'm talking crap about e9x models without sport package. my main point is... don't dismiss the whole entire e90 family because you didn't like your friends base 328i. drive one with a sport package and you'll really appreciate it.
(directed to others, not you)

hopefully our miscommunication has left no hard feelings. i think we both agree that the e9x with sports package is a great car, no doubt.
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