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      09-03-2006, 06:37 AM   #1
Boo34
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Decisions, decisions...

Hi all,

First off, just to say what a great forum !

After five years of frustration, the company I work for has seen the light and put BMW's on the car list.

I was the butt of 'old man' jokes in a Rover 75 for 3 years and then an Audi A4 for the last two but finally, the time has come - I can order a 3 series !!

I've got a P11D value of 26K and I'm ordering tomorrow - my current thoughts are as follows.....

318i M Sport. Sapphire Black. Black Leather. Style 193 18" Alloys. Sun Protection Glass. No model inscription. Sliding Front Armrest.

I was going to have the folding door mirrors but I'm being told that the spec has changed slightly and that they are now included - hence the armrest!

Does anyone have any other suggestions? I love the M Sport look and the interior. The A4 I've had for a couple of years is a Sport model so I'm used to a relatively hard ride and don't mind it.

I do around 750 miles per week.

All opinions welcome !
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      09-03-2006, 06:49 AM   #2
vivekk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boo34
Hi all,

First off, just to say what a great forum !

After five years of frustration, the company I work for has seen the light and put BMW's on the car list.

I was the butt of 'old man' jokes in a Rover 75 for 3 years and then an Audi A4 for the last two but finally, the time has come - I can order a 3 series !!

I've got a P11D value of 26K and I'm ordering tomorrow - my current thoughts are as follows.....

318i M Sport. Sapphire Black. Black Leather. Style 193 18" Alloys. Sun Protection Glass. No model inscription. Sliding Front Armrest.

I was going to have the folding door mirrors but I'm being told that the spec has changed slightly and that they are now included - hence the armrest!

Does anyone have any other suggestions? I love the M Sport look and the interior. The A4 I've had for a couple of years is a Sport model so I'm used to a relatively hard ride and don't mind it.

I do around 750 miles per week.

All opinions welcome !
Welcome to the forum, Boo34.

If I were going to buy my car again & choose the options, I'd just make damn sure I didn't leave off the xenons (which I didn't, anyway!).

They really are worth the money & I will certainly not buy another car again without them.

Get yourself down to UK2 at Donington Park on Sept 23rd & see the options from a user's point of view- don't take for granted anything the dealer tells you about options & which ones you should or shouldn't have.

Viv
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      09-03-2006, 06:51 AM   #3
2GPP
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Why not a 320i M Sport? or a 318d M Sport?
Will the 318d not be a bit quicker than the petrol 318i and also give better fuel economy?
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      09-03-2006, 07:02 AM   #4
Chris33
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Hi Boo34 and welcome to the forum!

You spec sounds really good already. The xenon's are a must if you can get them within your budget.

Also, why not go ror the 318d? I had one for 3 weeks whilst my car was being built and I was well impressed with it.

Leather trim is nice but I would rather lose the leather and have have the 318d and xenon lights.

The standard seats in the M Sport are really nice. I only had leather fitted as it's easy to keep clean when I've had my two little horror's in the back! otherwise I would of kept the standard trim.
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external mirror package.
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      09-03-2006, 07:04 AM   #5
Boo34
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Problem is.... It's a company car. I've 'only' got a list price of 26K to play with. I can't contribute to that figure at all.

I could get the 320i M Sport, with metallic, but no Leather, 18" alloys etc...

The 318d M Sport lists at over 26K without any extra's at all...

Fuel consumption isn't a major problem - it's a fully expensed car so I get a fuel card and pay tax on this as a benifit.

What a fantastic problem I've got !!!!
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      09-03-2006, 07:07 AM   #6
vivekk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boo34
Problem is.... It's a company car. I've 'only' got a list price of 26K to play with. I can't contribute to that figure at all.

I could get the 320i M Sport, with metallic, but no Leather, 18" alloys etc...

The 318d M Sport lists at over 26K without any extra's at all...

Fuel consumption isn't a major problem - it's a fully expensed car so I get a fuel card and pay tax on this as a benifit.

What a fantastic problem I've got !!!!
Can't you 'bend' anyone's arm so that you can contribute to any additional cost?

There's always a way around everything- you just have to look for it!

Viv
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      09-03-2006, 07:16 AM   #7
Boo34
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Believe me Viv, I've tried. It's took two years to get BMW on the list at all!

I don't understand why, but the company has a particularly backward attitude to cars. It would be much better all round if they just let me opt out and paid me an allowance !

Ah well, not the biggest problem in the world !!!
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      09-03-2006, 07:28 AM   #8
Chris33
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Stick with what you have picked then, it's sounds a nice car.

The only thing I might change would be the leather.

You can get a lot of extra's for £995, say xenons and ungraded stereo or auto lights and wipers etc etc, but leather is nice aswell.
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      09-03-2006, 07:52 AM   #9
mjh93sa
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I'd say get down to a dealer and try a 318i/d. You'll be spending a lot of time with the car so make sure you try the different options.

Certainly the diesel ticks the fuel economy button, but is also gives significantly more mid-range punch. In normal driving it's going to feel quicker. It was some years ago now, but the diff between the 2litre petol and diesel E46 when I was looking was chalk and cheese - the diesel blew the petrol into the weeds.

I'd second Viv on the Xenon's... once you've had them you'll never want to go back. Drive a car with halogens and it's like going back to the darkages.

At the risk of inviting all sorts of argument and abuse, I'd also say that you might even want to look at the SE. You can throw in sports seats, steering wheel and suspension for less than the Sport cost if you want them. It all depends if you want the styling mods or some more toys.
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      09-03-2006, 10:12 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjh93sa
Drive a car with halogens and it's like going back to the darkages.
That's punny!
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European Taillights • Rear Foglamp • OEM Alarm • PicoTray • DataToys XM-DVR • Multi-view Processor
Quaife ATB LSD • Short Shift Knob • Hartge Anti-Roll Bars • AP Racing Front Brakes • 19" Style 269
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      09-03-2006, 11:36 AM   #11
E92-Mark
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Welcome to the forum. With those miles, you should try the diesel, you might even like it.

+1 with Viv's comment on Xenons, definately worth the extra money.
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      09-03-2006, 11:58 AM   #12
JonMad
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I second the comments about the option of an SE with sports seats, sports suspension and sports steering wheel.

Jon
320d SE with sports seats, sports suspension and sports steering wheel.

If you come along to the meet you can have a drive of mine if you like (as long as you're over 25 you'll be insured)
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      09-04-2006, 05:36 AM   #13
NFS
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boo34
Hi all,

First off, just to say what a great forum !

After five years of frustration, the company I work for has seen the light and put BMW's on the car list.

I was the butt of 'old man' jokes in a Rover 75 for 3 years and then an Audi A4 for the last two but finally, the time has come - I can order a 3 series !!

I've got a P11D value of 26K and I'm ordering tomorrow - my current thoughts are as follows.....

318i M Sport. Sapphire Black. Black Leather. Style 193 18" Alloys. Sun Protection Glass. No model inscription. Sliding Front Armrest.

I was going to have the folding door mirrors but I'm being told that the spec has changed slightly and that they are now included - hence the armrest!

Does anyone have any other suggestions? I love the M Sport look and the interior. The A4 I've had for a couple of years is a Sport model so I'm used to a relatively hard ride and don't mind it.

I do around 750 miles per week.

All opinions welcome !
Not sure about the folding door mirrors being included. I just picked up my 330i on Friday and I'm pretty sure mine don't fold. I think this is still an option.

Personally I would go with the m-sport for definite - the m-kit is lovely and it makes the car IMO.

1. The anthracite headliner is classy and different - more like an audi interior
2. The msport steering wheel and short shifter are fantastic.
3. The body kit spices things up and the sill finishers are a nice touch.
4. The wheels kick butt
5. The sports suspension improves the dynamics.

My suggestion would be a straightforward 320i msport + plus metallic paint, which will be valued at £25,950

You really don't 'need' leather when you have the alcantara sports seats - they are nice enough as is. Ditto the sun protection glass and sliding armrest.

I would drop those things in a flash for 150bhp (which is about right for the car).

Personally I think 129 bhp is a bit weak for a 3 series. My old e46 318 touring had 143 bhp.
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      09-04-2006, 06:01 AM   #14
Snake Pliskin
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I totally agree with everything NFS has just said ... well we have got the same car (Well nearly)

But my main input would be ...

Seats ... yeah no need for leather as the M Sport has exclusive trim which looks and feels superb ... the alcantara is a VERY nice touch .. so seams a shame to upgrade to leather when you have an exclusive trim level already.

As for Xenon's ... there is one thing to consider guys, as I did NOT spec them for one reason ... I would not use that often as I don't do the miles and certainly don't do many miles at night ... just something to consider ?

As for the car ... here's a suggestion ... see if you could get your hands on a 320 si ... you get all the kit from the M Sport, but get a stunning uprated 2.0 litre engine and exclusive racing 18" alloys. (no need to spend more money upgrading alloys) .. but if you get the M Sport then defo upgrade to the 18" rims.

The car is around the same price as a 320 M Sport but you get some very exclusive kit and the car looks

Don't bother with Diesel for 2 reasons:

1) You don't do enough miles and you say your fuel is expensed

2) The car costs more to buy in the 1st place

Get a 320 m sport or si and this will give you all your sport kit and spend the rest on extras as you see fit.
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      09-04-2006, 06:26 AM   #15
NFS
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I agree with Snake - cept for the diesel comments. The OP does 750 miles a week - that's almost 40,000 a year.

That's serious diesel territory and the fully expensed option does let him get away from it.

The tax on the private fuel is pretty exhorbitant and is also based on CO2 so it's possible worth opting out of private fuel anyway. The break even point on my 320cd for private fuel benefit was about 10,000 personal miles per annum. I reckon keeping it cost me £400 a year, but it was worth it because I hate doing expenses.

He could get a 320d SE with metallic paint and a couple of other bits, but would not be able to stretch to the m-sport or get leather.

320d would be the cheapest option (and most sensible) - I would still go for the 320i msport. 320si is a good call, but they are all sold now - so I think he has no chance.
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      09-04-2006, 06:42 AM   #16
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Horses for courses, I guess, but I'd sooner have the extra power of the 320d SE over the 'more show but less go' of the 318i M-Sport.

Nice dilema though. Have fun deciding.
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      09-04-2006, 07:02 AM   #17
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Forget the fuel economy of the diesel and look at the performance....

Engine 0-62 50-75 (4th)
318i 10.0 10.9
318d 10.6 9.3
320i 9.0 9.1
320d 8.6 6.7

The diesel will be disappearing over the horozon while the petrol is shifting gears to try and keep up.

But then I am biased towards the diesel

At the end of the day they are all great cars. It's a question of finding the power / toy / style balance that suits you.

But seriously, try and get a drive of them (or come see us at UK2 if there's time) before you make a final decision.
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      09-04-2006, 07:19 AM   #18
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i thought all the si's has been sold too but then stumbled across one for sale in a dealers recently ... brand new unregistered !

May be one in the network somewhere which is why i mentioned it
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      09-06-2006, 02:25 PM   #19
Boo34
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Thanks all, for your idea's and suggestions....

I've put the order in as per my original spec.

Reasons being quite simple in the end....

I was set on the M Sport - I just like the sport look. (And I am more of a style over performance sort of guy)

I was set on the 18" Alloys - I just think they set it off a treat (and I'm not overly keen on the 17" ones)

My budget didn't stretch to a 320D M Sport.

The good news is that there is the exact spec car in a dealer showroom in Scotland that will be winging it's way to the dealer in Surrey and then back up to me in the midlands before the end of the month !!!

Happy days !

If it arrives in time I will try to get to your meet - it's not a million miles from me.

P.S. I would have had a 320si in a shot if it didn't have such poor co2 figures. It would have cost me well over a grand a year out my pocket in extra tax!
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      09-06-2006, 02:32 PM   #20
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Excellent choice and spec!
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