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      05-23-2007, 01:27 AM   #1
1stKnight
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My Petrol v Diesel Experiences and the 335i

My first foray into the benefits of the modern diesel was a car that superseded a Volvo S40 1.8, a ‘03 320d – a car I chose over its petrol counterpart due to its excellent economy and strong overtaking prowess. Indeed, I was a total diesel convert extolling its virtues to anyone who would listen although I didn’t like the narrow rev range much. But then I test drove a Z4…and even with the entry level – at that time – engine in the form of the 2.2i, it became easily the most fun driving experience I have ever had. The free-revving engine sounded brilliant to my ears and the car was never boring. To this day I still miss it and will most certainly return to a Roadster in the hopefully not too distant future.

Parenthood dictated that I required a 4-seater however and I eagerly took the opportunity to return to diesel motoring and a 330cd convertible entered my life. Immediately I found the torque excellent on motorways and felt that the acceleration from a standing start was as quick as my Z4 but… the 330cd was far heavier and much less agile and the rev range limits more noticeable to me; definitely a cruiser rather than a B-road fun machine. Wanting more from the car performance-wise, I elected to have DMS perform their magic on the ECU and I was overjoyed at the difference – it was much faster in all respects. Over the course of a year’s ownership of this fine diesel, I gradually discovered unfortunately that I was only really enjoying the car when driving it hard – cruising around relatively sedately proved to be uninspiring for me despite the very nature of the car preferring this style. Unless I was deliberately ‘showing off’ the car’s awesome torque to myself by comparing it constantly to other vehicles – especially petrol models – by seeing if I could keep up with them or pull away, I was finding myself increasingly dissatisfied and found I could only enjoy the car otherwise if the roof was down and I was taking in the glorious sun; which wasn’t as often as I would have liked. That said, the convertible was – is – a fabulous looking car and proved to be a comfortable and rewarding owning experience; a testament to how powerful diesels have become.

It was on a whim a couple of weeks ago that I decided to test drive a 335i saloon – to see how the best petrol’s were faring nowadays given the adulation and good press that the diesels were earning. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the grin missing since Z4 ownership returned within moments. This smooth, amazing engine simply shouted out to me what I had been missing…the impossibly addictive 6 cylinder growl coupled with high-revving thrills and powerful performance with no noticeable turbo lag whatsoever in a relatively lightweight package that was better balanced overall. I was hooked.

No doubt the 335d with remap will outgun a standard 335i but, like my 330cd, I fear it may not provide the satisfaction I seek in my driving. I like having to work a car a little harder to extract its potential. And I prefer manual to auto accordingly. I believe if I had driven the 335d, I would have been blown away by its diesel greatness and effortless thrust but boredom would have set in after a while – as it had done with my 330cd; performance orientated petrol’s don’t bore me in that they are, to me, more engaging. I debated the pro’s and con’s in my mind and chose to buy a 335i Coupe. My decision aided in part by a reduction in my commute due to an imminent house-move and that I only pay v.a.t. on private mileage anyway.

First impressions on Friday evening were very positive indeed. The car is just superb and I adore its gearbox and award-winning engine. I have yet to open it up completely even though it is a used model with just over 3000 miles on it and therefore just begging for a hard session. Instead, I’ve found myself wallowing in the overall experience and driving it very much like a diesel and still finding it appreciably more enjoyable. Yesterday, I covered my present daily trek to work – all of 61 miles, mostly motorway – at 34.8 mpg. Not bad. Perhaps tomorrow I’ll explore beyond 4500rpm and no doubt broaden my grin.

In summary, I rate the 335i very highly and find myself wanting to drive the car, indeed, looking forward even to my commute. Which reminds me...I have a Seminar to get to so I'd better be going...my space grey machine and its sumptuous coral leather beckon.
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      05-23-2007, 02:08 AM   #2
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Pics pics pics - Nice write up. The petrols are returning!!
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      05-23-2007, 03:24 AM   #3
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It is a great car.

I test drove both just to be sure of my decision

D.
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      05-23-2007, 04:35 AM   #4
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It's great how different people are. I don't enjoy driving as much as I used to. It's nothing to do with the cars I drive, but more the roads are busier than ever and big brother is watching you all the time. I still drive lots of miles on a daily basis as part of my job so I do get fed up with it. I've driven (and motorcycled) the best part of a million miles since I was 16 and so the d provides what I want exactly, a stress free drive. When I drove the i, I was very impressed with the performance and I would say it was as quick as our old M3 (we're not talking handling here) in a straight line possibly even quicker due to the increase in torque. It gave the driver a lot of feedback, you knew you moving with the great engine noise and the tacho needle spinning round. Although it is an easier, more flexible car to drive than the M3 ever was the i is still too fast and furious for me. Now the d is deceptively quick, faster in some overtaking situations than the i or M3, but it does it without any fuss or attracting attention. So after a week of driving around meeting deadlines it's nice to relax with the d.

Just my two pence worth.

Regards

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      05-23-2007, 04:57 AM   #5
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Nice post ...

My last few cars were also diesels (320cd msport and 530d SE) on the basis that nothing else makes any sense at all as a company car.

Like you I have also 'come back' to a petrol engined car, because I find it more engaging and fun to drive.

I did a couple of driving days last year and when I got back into my diesel auto afterward I just felt deflated and disconnected from the 'experience' of driving.

My 330i m-sport with manual box is more expensive to run and not much quicker on the road than a diesel, but I just love driving it.

There are plenty of people who don't want this and prefer the diesels torque. Good luck to them - they are probably more sensible than me - but it's nice to hear from a fellow forum member with a similar view to my own.

Welcome to the forum!

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      05-23-2007, 06:10 AM   #6
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sounds like you made a good choice with the 335i and they are quicker than an e36 m3 in a straight line
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      05-23-2007, 07:04 AM   #7
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For the first time ever, I became almost convinced that my next car should be a diesel. But then I remembered the huge grin factor created by my ever so childish desire to rev the nuts off a powerful engine. I loved the fact that my Celica had a hidden kick as you climbed the rev range and the vvti came into effect. I was intoxicated by the effortless, smooth-as-cream climb to 9000rpm in my RX8 and the acccompanying unique rotary howl. I love the sound of my 330i straight 6, (also in space grey and coral), as I plant my foot. I wind down windows in tunnels just to listen!!

OK, I can't do it as often as I like and much of my daily drive is a crawl through traffic...but when I do get a chance! Fabulous! My paltry 10000 miles a year doesn't really dent the bank balance too much and although head says diesel next time, but heart definitely says upgrade to a 335i manual. :rocks:
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      05-23-2007, 07:29 AM   #8
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upgrade to the m3 chap
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      05-23-2007, 08:13 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dxb335d View Post
upgrade to the m3 chap
Given that it's not been launched yet and only 200 will be available in the UK in the first year, all of which have been sold, this isn't really a practical option.

Then of course there is the £54k price tag - only £10K more than the e46 M3 CS (and I think the alcantara trimmed wheel is still an option )

Still - if I walk everywhere until 2009 I may actually be able to afford one.
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      05-23-2007, 08:28 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dxb335d View Post
upgrade to the m3 chap
Maybe I could get my dad to buy one and drive his...

Unfortunately the real world prohibits such wild acts of fantasy...you know, mortgage, kids, the need to eat etc. etc.
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      05-23-2007, 08:40 AM   #11
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Or own both diesel and petrol That's what I'm looking at as the 335d is too good a car to be given up. However, for those special moments when you're hungry for , you have the choice of another car.

And it doesn't have to be expensive, £6k E30 M3, £8K VX220 etc etc ...
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      05-23-2007, 08:53 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RockIt View Post
Maybe I could get my dad to buy one and drive his...

Unfortunately the real world prohibits such wild acts of fantasy...you know, mortgage, kids, the need to eat etc. etc.
I can still hear the echoes from that bitch slap
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      05-23-2007, 10:08 AM   #13
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Quote:
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Or own both diesel and petrol That's what I'm looking at as the 335d is too good a car to be given up. However, for those special moments when you're hungry for , you have the choice of another car.

And it doesn't have to be expensive, £6k E30 M3, £8K VX220 etc etc ...
Where can I get an £8k VX220?
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      05-23-2007, 11:39 AM   #14
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I can still hear the echoes from that bitch slap
Easy now his dads bigger than your dad
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      05-23-2007, 05:39 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peppernick View Post
Or own both diesel and petrol That's what I'm looking at as the 335d is too good a car to be given up. However, for those special moments when you're hungry for , you have the choice of another car.

And it doesn't have to be expensive, £6k E30 M3, £8K VX220 etc etc ...
That's exactly what I have. E92 335D for daily use.

And a little toy for other times.

D.
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      05-26-2007, 03:28 AM   #16
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      05-26-2007, 03:31 AM   #17
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Nicey nice!
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      05-26-2007, 05:55 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RockIt View Post
Maybe I could get my dad to buy one and drive his...

Unfortunately the real world prohibits such wild acts of fantasy...you know, mortgage, kids, the need to eat etc. etc.
i cant complain one bit chap

but i am somewhat younger than you so its allowed
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      05-26-2007, 05:56 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by needforspeed View Post
Given that it's not been launched yet and only 200 will be available in the UK in the first year, all of which have been sold, this isn't really a practical option.

Then of course there is the £54k price tag - only £10K more than the e46 M3 CS (and I think the alcantara trimmed wheel is still an option )

Still - if I walk everywhere until 2009 I may actually be able to afford one.
are they all sold??? didn tthink that was the case, my uncle who works for bmw says we can still put a deposit down
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      05-26-2007, 05:59 AM   #20
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Hey dxb - did you decide which girl you're going to stick with?
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      05-26-2007, 06:01 AM   #21
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Have you sold your house to buy the i then? Good lad
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      05-26-2007, 08:53 AM   #22
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Have you sold your house to buy the i then? Good lad
One must have priorities!

But no, wife fancied a new house and we move next week. At least it meant she didn't complain when I decided to change cars.
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