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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 01-11-2012, 12:42 PM   #1
andymilonkis453
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How many is too many miles for an e46 m3?

I might be in the market for an e46 m3 soon but not 100% sure. However, I am wondering about the miles and how many miles is too many. I currently have a 02 330xi im trying to sell and I love it to death. I am a DIYer and have kept by baby running strong at 155k. However, I know m3 are a wee bit different and are performance cars that tend to be driven harder. As for repairs, if I was going to be looking at buying an m3 with 100k+miles, what should i look out for?
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:15 PM   #2
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Well if you have the money to keep up with repairs and maintenance there is no limit on the number of miles... Look for rust, check if its been driven in winters, any fender benders, repair/maintenance history, and take it for a drive and see if it feels right. The biggest issue with an m3 over a non-m is just parts costs can be quite higher. You will probably be doing a lot more maintenance on the m3 vs the same year/mile non-m so you just need to be prepared to drop cash down when you need to.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:17 PM   #3
andymilonkis453
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Okay and the m3 is an inline 6 correct? How does it push out 333hp over my inline 6 on my 330?
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:20 PM   #4
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Okay and the m3 is an inline 6 correct? How does it push out 333hp over my inline 6 on my 330?
how does a Ferrari 4.6V8 makes 560hp where an american 5.7V8 makes miserable 400hp?

M3's got higher compression, different cam setup, different vanos setup, better intake, longer stroke, bigger bore, higher rpm.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:26 PM   #5
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Well if you have the money to keep up with repairs and maintenance there is no limit on the number of miles... Look for rust, check if its been driven in winters, any fender benders, repair/maintenance history, and take it for a drive and see if it feels right. The biggest issue with an m3 over a non-m is just parts costs can be quite higher. You will probably be doing a lot more maintenance on the m3 vs the same year/mile non-m so you just need to be prepared to drop cash down when you need to.
^
+1

Best to have an ///M with higher milege as your second car, not your daily driver...
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:27 PM   #6
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Okay and the m3 is an inline 6 correct? How does it push out 333hp over my inline 6 on my 330?
Here's the Specs on why it's able to.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:28 PM   #7
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how does a Ferrari 4.6V8 makes 560hp where an american 5.7V8 makes miserable 400hp?

M3's got higher compression, different cam setup, different vanos setup, better intake, longer stroke, bigger bore, higher rpm.
also, the S54 is a 3.2 L engine whereas the M54 (330) is a 3.0 L engine.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:28 PM   #8
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how exactly does the posi trac rear end on a plymouth work?.....It just does!
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:35 PM   #9
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http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=190111

personally, if/when I get an M3 I'm planning to spend an additional ~$3000 on replacement parts and upgrades. Right out of the gate I'd be looking to do cam bolts and exaust hub sprocket and I'd resolve VANOS issues before they arise. I'd also be likely to do RTABs and subframe reinforcement.

Only after I did all of that would I start modding the car.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:47 PM   #10
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my plan is to swap an m3 motor into my sedan which already has subframe reinforcement and everything else done...which in my opinion is cheaper/better than just buying a whole new car....thats if your current car is already aesthetically modified and you need 4 doors like me haha
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Old 01-11-2012, 02:32 PM   #11
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Except mine has all wheel drive which my transfer case can't handle the extra horses along with the front drive axles in the way. So as for the engine and 6 speed tranny...both are solid?
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Old 01-11-2012, 02:50 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by andymilonkis453 View Post
I might be in the market for an e46 m3 soon but not 100% sure. However, I am wondering about the miles and how many miles is too many. I currently have a 02 330xi im trying to sell and I love it to death. I am a DIYer and have kept by baby running strong at 155k. However, I know m3 are a wee bit different and are performance cars that tend to be driven harder. As for repairs, if I was going to be looking at buying an m3 with 100k+miles, what should i look out for?

100k+ is too much. M3s are cars that usually see more abuse in their lives, and they cost a lot more to maintain than a regular 3er. You should be looking around 50-60kmiles at the most, spending a little extra on a lower mileage car will be worth it when it comes to repair costs in the long run, given other factors like proper maintenance are the same. im sure someone will disagree with that... trust me, as long as you still holding on to your cash, you should be picky.
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Old 01-11-2012, 03:34 PM   #13
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I would have no qualms about driving an M3 with 200K miles IF it had been properly maintained it's whole life--and those cars probably don't have high miles, even after 10 years.

Keep in mind that consumables like oil, tires, and brakes are going to cost a lot more. All the parts cost more, generally.
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Old 01-12-2012, 02:20 AM   #14
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so smg is a definite no no then?
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Old 01-12-2012, 02:52 AM   #15
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This really comes down to whether or not the car was well maintained over it's life. There are some things, like adjusting the lifters that some owners just skip over. But the M3 is a serious car, and requires pretty exact maintenance. If the PO has a stack of receipts for all of his inspections and service performed, and you get a THOROUGH Pre purchase inspection, then 100k may not be bad. But a lack of records would make me walk away. Too many people just drive the piss out of these cars, and don't keep them well maintained. Almost every M3 I have looked at was owned by a young, single guy, who was stretched to the max credit wise, and owned the M3 as a status symbol, but wanted to sell it when it started to require serious maintenance, because he could not afford it. Not to stereotype anyone here. That has just been my experience.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:36 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Shooters04M3 View Post
how exactly does the posi trac rear end on a plymouth work?.....It just does!



OP, if you have the money to fix it it doesn't matter. I would look for one where the current owner actually cared about the car and did the needed and preventative repairs.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:49 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by andymilonkis453 View Post
I might be in the market for an e46 m3 soon but not 100% sure. However, I am wondering about the miles and how many miles is too many. I currently have a 02 330xi im trying to sell and I love it to death. I am a DIYer and have kept by baby running strong at 155k. However, I know m3 are a wee bit different and are performance cars that tend to be driven harder. As for repairs, if I was going to be looking at buying an m3 with 100k+miles, what should i look out for?
Pm me your specs and prices on your XI's I might be interested in holding one for you
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Old 01-12-2012, 02:01 PM   #18
andymilonkis453
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this is the one i was thinking about. what do you guys think? comments? concerns?

http://washingtondc.craigslist.org/n...784407637.html
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Old 01-12-2012, 02:04 PM   #19
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Looks good from here, but ya gotta see cars like that in person to tell if they're worth it.
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Old 01-12-2012, 02:12 PM   #20
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anything to particularly look for when test driving?
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