E46 BMW Social Directory E46 FAQ 3-Series Discussion Forums BMW Photo Gallery BMW 3-Series Technical Information E46 Fanatics - The Ultimate BMW Resource BMW Vendors General E46 Forum The Tire Rack's Tire Wheel Forum Forced Induction Forum The Off-Topic The E46 BMW Showroom For Sale, For Trade or Wanting to Buy

Welcome to the E46Fanatics forums. E46Fanatics is the premiere website for BMW 3 series owners around the world with interactive forums, a geographical enthusiast directory, photo galleries, and technical information for BMW enthusiasts.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   E46Fanatics > E46 BMW > ///M3 Forum

///M3 Forum
The BMW E46 ///M3 is the M version E46 and puts out an amazing 333 HP and 262 lb-ft of torque at stock specs! There are an amazing amount of modifications for both the coupe and convertible models so read up and get started modifying your cars today!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rating: Thread Rating: 1 votes, 5.00 average. Display Modes
Old 03-14-2013, 11:28 AM   #101
taylor192
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: The Best Place on Earth
Posts: 1,578
My Ride: 2003.5 M3
After suffering through a repair on the vert top my opinion isn't as strong as it used to be. If BMW had designed the top a bit better it'd last a long time. Yet since the seals in the hydraulic cylinders will all eventually leak, you gotta have a couple $Ks ready for a repair if you're going to keep this vert a long time.
taylor192 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-16-2013, 04:22 PM   #102
Obioban
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Malvern, PA
Posts: 957
My Ride: 2005 Imola/Imola M3
Send a message via AIM to Obioban
Quote:
Originally Posted by taylor192 View Post
After suffering through a repair on the vert top my opinion isn't as strong as it used to be. If BMW had designed the top a bit better it'd last a long time. Yet since the seals in the hydraulic cylinders will all eventually leak, you gotta have a couple $Ks ready for a repair if you're going to keep this vert a long time.
The e46 is actually one of the most reliable vert designs BMW has offered. Nature of the beast!
__________________
Obioban is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-16-2013, 07:52 PM   #103
Snik
OEM ///Member
 
Snik's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Around SJ AFB, NC
Posts: 20,601
My Ride: IR M3 Vert.
Mine is 11 years old and works GREAT!
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by rohde88 View Post
^^^ do you spend all your free time on two wheels?
______________________________________
The Snikster posted sexy wiminz here
Do you ride a sportbike?
Do you have a question about Jamaica? Ask?
Snik is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2013, 07:58 AM   #104
danwilz
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Staten Island, New York
Posts: 533
My Ride: E46 M3 Vert 2012 X5
+1^^^^^ Mine is 12 years old never had a problem.
__________________
danwilz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2013, 05:57 PM   #105
SoIcyM3
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: New York
Posts: 7
My Ride: 2001 M3 Convertible
+1 mine is an '01 and top works perfect!

Sent from my MB860 using Bimmer App
SoIcyM3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2013, 06:04 PM   #106
nopcbs
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Michigan
Posts: 39
My Ride: GMC Yukon XL
Open air driving

Last fall I got the bug to buy a mid-90's Honda Nighthawk 750 motorcycle for a couple of thousand dollars. This idea IMMEDIATELY ran into a brick wall...my wife. She is convinced that I will kill myself if I get a motorcycle. I have not ridden in a few decades, but I am NOT a street-racer type and would be VERY careful, I told her. She would hear none of it and told me to go buy fun a car, instead.

I had a 2003 E46 zhp sedan a few years back, bought it because (1) M3's did not come in 4-dr and (2) a used M3 would have been another $5,000 that I did not want to spend. The zhp and I never quite bonded (down on power), so I sold it after a few years, but I always regretted not getting an M3. So this was my 2nd chance to get the E46 M3.

I thought I wanted a coupe (manual, of course) and I quickly learned that nice ones are really pretty rare. Most E46's M3's were sold as convertibles (in US, anyway) and about 1/2 of all M3's were the (much feared, bad idea) SMG's. Then I spotted a silver 2006 M3 vert at an Ohio Honda dealer on Autotrader. It had only 26,000 miles, was loaded to the gills and the asking was $27,000. Manual, of course.

Not a coupe, though. That made me ask the question of why was I buying an M3. Was I going to race it? (no) Did I want to impress the BMW-heads who scorn verts because they weigh more than coupes? (hell, no) Or did I want the open air driving feeling that most closely approximates what I REALLY wanted...a mid-sized UJM motorcycle (yes) along with way more than adequate acceleration and handling (yes).

A sun-roof just does not cut it. Been there, done that; you are still in a cage. For sheer driving FUN on a nice day or evening, a vert beats any coupe severely about the head and shoulders.

If you don't care about that, then a coupe is the way to go, but you deprive yourself of a great driving pleasure...unless you also own a bike, of course.

Get the vert...you will love the top-down driving experience...and those coupe guys are just jealous 'cause they are stuck in cages while you are out in all that air and sunshine.

- nopcbs


Quote:
Originally Posted by avincent52 View Post
Noticed in another thread a mention that M3 convertibles don't have the same subframe issues as the coupes?

Which got me to thinking. I've always with the convertibles I've driven, mostly crappy rental cars, but I've been happy to pop the top even when it's cold or for a short ride. (I use my sunroof constantly in my wife's car and my old e46 wagon)

So what are the drawbacks/tradeoffs of an M3 vert?
Do they develop squeaks and rattles and cowl shake?
Is the windscreen well designed for top down highway driving?
Is the top well designed and reliable?
What's it like to drive with the top *up?*
nopcbs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2013, 06:19 PM   #107
nopcbs
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Michigan
Posts: 39
My Ride: GMC Yukon XL
A few answers

OK, mine is a 2006 with 26,000 miles.
Answering your questions:

Do they develop squeaks and rattles and cowl shake?

Mine is solid with the top down, but does have squeaks and a few rattles with top up. From doing some research it seems that the squeaks can be dealt with by applying a good rubber conditioner to the weatherstripping: 'Gummi Pflege Stift' Rubber Care Stick (Amazon).

I don't notice any cowl shake, but I am sure that on the right really bad road, it would be there. You have 400 lb. or so of reinforcement, but this is not a Corvette designed from the ground up as a convertible. Don't worry about it.

Is the windscreen well designed for top down highway driving?

If wind blast is a worry, make sure that the car you buy comes with a wind deflector that mounts behind the front seats. That will get you a pretty calm cockpit experience at highway speeds. You can get them used or new on eBay and at Amazon (~$400), too.

Is the top well designed and reliable?

The top is a quality unit. It should hold up well if you treat the fabric with a good water repellent/UV inhibitor compound periodically.

What's it like to drive with the top *up?

I already mentioned that squeaks/rattles are worse with top up. Other than that, it's much like driving a coupe. Rear window is a little smaller, I think.

Remember this, though, about a vert...on a nice sunny day or warm evening, you put the top down and go for a ride and all sins are forgiven, immediately. Those moments are...almost divine.

- nopcbs

Quote:
Originally Posted by avincent52 View Post
Noticed in another thread a mention that M3 convertibles don't have the same subframe issues as the coupes?

Which got me to thinking. I've always with the convertibles I've driven, mostly crappy rental cars, but I've been happy to pop the top even when it's cold or for a short ride. (I use my sunroof constantly in my wife's car and my old e46 wagon)

So what are the drawbacks/tradeoffs of an M3 vert?
Do they develop squeaks and rattles and cowl shake?
Is the windscreen well designed for top down highway driving?
Is the top well designed and reliable?
What's it like to drive with the top *up?*
nopcbs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2013, 09:40 AM   #108
DSilk56
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Miami, Florida
Posts: 766
My Ride: M-3 Convertible
I agree with everything you have said, with one exception. The reason that the Corvette does so well as a convertible isn't that it was designed as a convertible (the e46 was designed at the outset to have a convertible, as well), but rather because the body is completely unstressed. Unlike the BMW, whose suspension and drivetrain mount directly to the inner body panels, the Corvette's fiberglass body is simply set atop a separate chassis to which the fore-mentioned mechanicals are attached. The body adds no stiffness to the chassis, and whether or not it has a roof is irrelevant.
DSilk56 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-22-2013, 01:32 PM   #109
nopcbs
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Michigan
Posts: 39
My Ride: GMC Yukon XL
We have no real argument...

...except any car that needs reinforcement to become a convertible was not designed as a convertible. At best, it was designed as a coupe that can be reinforced enough to be an adequate convertible...which is pretty much any coupe.

You are absolutely right about the Corvette. They are designed from the git-go to be either a convertible or a coupe with no reinforcement needed in either case. That is really the better way to do it and probably the only way they could do it given the targa tops of most Corvette coupes.

I recall that in a comparison of a C4 Corvette and a Porsche convertible Car and Driver said the Corvette still experienced some cowl shake, even though designed as a convertible, but nothing like the Porsche which was a "Flexible Flyer" in comparison.

- nopcbs



Quote:
Originally Posted by DSilk56 View Post
I agree with everything you have said, with one exception. The reason that the Corvette does so well as a convertible isn't that it was designed as a convertible (the e46 was designed at the outset to have a convertible, as well), but rather because the body is completely unstressed. Unlike the BMW, whose suspension and drivetrain mount directly to the inner body panels, the Corvette's fiberglass body is simply set atop a separate chassis to which the fore-mentioned mechanicals are attached. The body adds no stiffness to the chassis, and whether or not it has a roof is irrelevant.
nopcbs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-22-2013, 01:49 PM   #110
DSilk56
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Miami, Florida
Posts: 766
My Ride: M-3 Convertible
The point about the Corvette is that you could drive the bare chassis with no body attached. The body is, in a sense, purely cosmetic, and apart from its passenger accommodation and aerodynamic assistance it is totally unnecessary to the operation of the vehicle. This is not the case with a monocoque (or unibody) construction, like our M3's (or most metal cars), for which the chassis IS the body. We talk about "frame" damage when, in fact, our cars do not have a separate frame at all. The Corvette does.
DSilk56 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2013, 08:56 AM   #111
Qstackfield
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 25
My Ride: 02 M3 Vert
1. I own on 02 6mt M3-Vert and love it!
2. I live in PA, from April-Sept, I'm all Vert. The remanding months I drive my Xi. However I have drove my Vert in the snow, both top up & down. (Top down in the winter, that's what winners do).
3. A friend has a 2003.5 coupe and we swap cars and I cannot tell a difference in the acceleration or top speed.
4. I take mine to my local track all the time. (Handles better with the roof down).
5. I do not have any squeaks or rattles, but I grease the metal joints that move.

Note: You will pick up way more chicks in an M-Vert compared to a coupe.


***The only issues I have are, the trunk and interior seats are different them a coupe, so you will not be able to use coupe parts.***
__________________
-Qstack

2002 6MT M3 Vert
2002 5MT 325 XI
2003 Lincoln Navigator
Qstackfield is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2013, 11:21 PM   #112
duhprez
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: toronto, Canada
Posts: 69
My Ride: 2003 BMW M3 Cabrio
can't go wrong with a M3 vert

I was specifically looking to get a vert and the e46 M3 was the runaway choice and by far the best package of value, performance and classic lines/look. Even with a model year of 2003, I've had regular comments that it's still among the best looking verts on the road today.

I'm in Canada and store my vert 5 months of the year for winter. Getting the beast out top down for spring/summer/fall makes the wait totally worth it over the winter months. It makes me appreciate the e46 M3 all over again every single season.

For shits and giggles, I track my K9 Suzuki GSXR750


Last edited by duhprez; 04-15-2013 at 11:21 PM.
duhprez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-2013, 06:36 PM   #113
XKR
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 562
My Ride: 2001 M3 Convertible
Buying the convertible M3 was the best choice i've made. Even though it's a little heavier then the coupe, it still could keep up with it and blow away many cars at the red light. I don't really like put my top down that much driving on the highway only on back roads because it is so much more enjoyable because odds are on main roads, you will be sitting in traffic getting a nice crispy sunburn. I'm still surprised on how many stares it gets lol.
XKR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2013, 06:45 PM   #114
Vivaxious
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 32
My Ride: 2003 M3 6MT 'Vert
I agree 100% with every vert owner out there....living in SoCal it doesn't get any better than a vert....trips up HWY 1, bolting through the canyons, and sheer driving fun - nothing can be experienced like that unless you're in a vert....life is more fun that way. and no, you can't tell it weight ~400 lb more....so unless you're going to a track - skip the notion of a coupe and get the drop top and love it. funny that one poster mentioned faster waxing....I just finished waxing mine 30 min ago and saved a bunch of time not having to do the roof.

plus chicks dig it...I'm always hit on by women and young ladies driving around #win #win

GL w Purchase
Vivaxious is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2013, 07:11 PM   #115
Snik
OEM ///Member
 
Snik's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Around SJ AFB, NC
Posts: 20,601
My Ride: IR M3 Vert.
Why *not* buy an M3 vert?

I call it drop top therapy, and you won't understand it unless you've driven a quality vert like a M vert


Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by rohde88 View Post
^^^ do you spend all your free time on two wheels?
______________________________________
The Snikster posted sexy wiminz here
Do you ride a sportbike?
Do you have a question about Jamaica? Ask?
Snik is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-2013, 02:26 PM   #116
dardarwin01
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: San Franscio
Posts: 109
My Ride: 330ci
Why *not* buy an M3 vert?

Does anybody know if their were a price difference between the coupe and the vert. When they were new in the lot


Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
dardarwin01 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-2013, 05:43 PM   #117
Snik
OEM ///Member
 
Snik's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Around SJ AFB, NC
Posts: 20,601
My Ride: IR M3 Vert.
Why *not* buy an M3 vert?

Yes. There was. Can't recall how much tho, but there was, and I believe. Still is.
Vert being more costly.

Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by rohde88 View Post
^^^ do you spend all your free time on two wheels?
______________________________________
The Snikster posted sexy wiminz here
Do you ride a sportbike?
Do you have a question about Jamaica? Ask?

Last edited by Snik; 11-03-2013 at 05:44 PM.
Snik is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2013, 11:47 AM   #118
rdoctor
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Charleston
Posts: 181
My Ride: 05 M3 Vert, 6MT
Send a message via Yahoo to rdoctor
They were actually significantly higher priced. My vert was $63,570 (still have the sticker) and you could by the same equipped coupe for around $56,000.
__________________

05.5 M3 Vert

Last edited by rdoctor; 11-04-2013 at 07:11 PM.
rdoctor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2013, 01:44 PM   #119
Snik
OEM ///Member
 
Snik's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Around SJ AFB, NC
Posts: 20,601
My Ride: IR M3 Vert.
Why *not* buy an M3 vert?

Yep. Sounds about right. A loaded smg vert must've cost a pretty penny.


Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by rohde88 View Post
^^^ do you spend all your free time on two wheels?
______________________________________
The Snikster posted sexy wiminz here
Do you ride a sportbike?
Do you have a question about Jamaica? Ask?
Snik is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2013, 08:37 PM   #120
M3_CABRIO
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: ATL
Posts: 359
My Ride: M3 / M5 / X5
Snik - ummm get a hardtop already would ya

Just redid the hardtop headliner and all the other bits to match. Much better. I feel the black BMW material suits the interior better than the OEM anthracite. Put the top on and it makes me appreciate how good the VERT looks as a coupe

The VERT with the proper suspension setup(Bilstein PSS10's) loves the mountains just as much as the coupe and you get to enjoy driving under the canopy of leaves

You CALI folks have coastal driving and canyons and I would have to say I do enjoy the PCH and Big Sur drives better than the East Coast drives. But open air is hard to beat.
__________________
07 Porsche 997TT | Carrera White | Blk
M3_CABRIO is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Censor is ON





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:33 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
(c) 1999 - 2011 performanceIX Inc - privacy policy - terms of use