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      07-29-2013, 06:46 AM   #1
bmshez
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Finally found an E92 I like...just a few things holding me back.

I've been keeping an eye out for a 325i E92 (yes I know, I know, I should get a 335i!) for almost a year and finally found one that I'm happy with in my price range.

Low ks (<50k), M Sports Pack, really nice 18"s, sunroof, GPS etc., 2008 model, drives like a charm.

Except there are these few things that are nagging away at me:

1. The interior has just the regular aluminium trim which is fine except the trim on both doors has numerous tiny little scratches/dints on it. The dealer says that this is a common issue in 3 Series caused by the seat belt hitting the sides as they whip back into place. This kinda bugged me because it got me thinking: if you've dropped $80k plus on a brand new car, are you really going to be so careless as to continuously let this damage the interior of your car? Guess the previous owner must've been mega rich and didn't care or something..

Has anyone else had this issue? Is it worthwhile replacing the panels? Or is there a better alternative to this? Or will I simply end up not noticing it because of how awesome the car is to drive?

(Sorry I haven't really started researching this yet)

2. I checked the log books and it's been serviced at a reputable place. The first service was done at 25,000 km which is reasonable given it's vehicle condition based servicing. However, the first service was done more than one year after the car had been purchased: a May 2008 compliance date car serviced for the first time in March 2010.

Is this a warning sign? Should I be staying away from this? I thought it was customary to get it serviced in the first year.

3. This one isn't much of a concern, just something I'm curious about: thoughts on vinyl wrapping an E92? In a non-matte colour..

4. If I do buy this, I'll be getting it with the Allianz Extended Warranty. I know typically with warranties you can't modify anything but could you get away with swapping out the exhaust?

Anyways thanks in advance!
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      07-29-2013, 08:04 AM   #2
cartaa100
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save and get a 335i
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      07-29-2013, 09:00 AM   #3
kaitan
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Just wondering how are you getting the extended warranty? does it still have factory warranty given that it is an 08 model car?

Next I need to point out to you that, considering that the interior is poorly kept just tells me one thing that the owner doesn't really car about the car. So I can be sure that the car is not well maintained. Someone once told me this and I've said it before if there is problem with the engine it can be fixed but if the interiors are worn and has alot of scratched then it's really difficult to change the panel. if you know what I mean?

Anyways good luck .
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      07-29-2013, 07:57 PM   #4
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If circumstances are such that a 325i is what you can afford, then go for it. Your next E92 can be a 335i and perhaps a 2013 model!

You mention that the trim has issues but you did not mention the rest of the interior – particularly the leather and the driver seat base and bolsters/sides. If they are good then it is not really a big deal. I also have the same alu trim on my 335i and it too had the very same issues as the one you are looking at – especially on the driver’s door. Like you I wondered how the original owner allowed that to happen in the first place. As the rest of my interior was spotless, I did not let the trim issue bother me. I have since replaced it. Cost me ~$140 and an easy DIY. Alternately you could do a vinyl wrap on all the trim pieces in the car for a new look .

The service intervals seem normal to me – perhaps other can clarify that for you.
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      07-29-2013, 08:33 PM   #5
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I had a 325... I liked it. I did swap to a 135 within 12 months but the E92 325 was my first BMW and no regrets about ownership.

1. It's common. Replace the trim if you want.

2. Most new BMWs aren't serviced within the first year... so pretty normal service history. Mind you more frequent changes wouldn't go astray.

3. Depends on the colour? Most people wrap to be unique... if you wrap it gloss black or silver it'll just look normal?

4. Exhaust won't void warranty. How much is the warranty? I probably wouldn't bother TBH... if something breaks just replace it at a good independent, no real 'catastrophic' failures to date.
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      07-29-2013, 08:37 PM   #6
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Aluminum Trim:
I have the same trim. I don't have any scratches. Reading your statement of what the seller said, actually called home to my son and asked him to go look because I couldn't think of one instance where my seat belt hit the door trim. I also checks some pics on the Internet to see if by chance Aussie seat belts differ from those I'm familiar with. (I've never been to Australia.)

My son's a fairly smart and sensible 17 year old and as soon as he got in the car his observation was:
How could anyone scratch the trim on the door with the seat belt? Maybe in some freak event they could once, but that's it. The position of the best and that little button that keeps the latch from sliding down too far make it like impossible to do. You would have to actually try to scratch it if that's how it got scratched.
Based on that alone, I would find another car and another seller. I wouldn't trust that seller any farther than I can throw him. It seems clear to me s/he will say anything to make a sale. If the seller will lie and/or make up a story about a mere cosmetic aspect of the car, there's no telling what s/he'll do over more serious matters of concern that you express to him/her. Let's face it, it would take very little to just buff out the scratches, regardless of whether you had to do it or the seller had to do it.

Service Interval:
The car should be serviced when the computer says do so, or at least once a year. Having the doubts about the seller I noted above, and reading that this car has an odd service history, I would just keep looking.

I have no input to offer on the other elements of your question.

I'm sorry I haven't any positive thoughts to offer you. Fortunately, you seem like a patient sort of person, so just hold tight and have some faith. The right car will come along in time.

All the best and good luck.
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Tony

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'07, e92 335i, Sparkling Graphite, Coral Leather, Aluminum, 6-speed
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      07-29-2013, 08:40 PM   #7
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I looked at over 10 E92s before I ended up buying one.

I can tell you, every single one (4-5) with the aluminum trim had loads of dents on the door trim, every other car with the wood grain didn't have the same issue so it's common.

Look out to see if the rest of the trims are scratched (i.e. the black bits on the sliding panels front & back seats, or the kick panel under the door whatever that's called, the trim in the boot where someone loads stuff in, etc) I would judge by those bits that always gets rubbed against instead of the door trim.

I was quoted around $100 per trim so it's an easy fix in the future when I go about selling the car. Oh and I have never noticed that trim since buying the car cause it's pretty much hidden when you close the door, otherwise I would've fixed it by now too cause those things annoy me.
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      07-30-2013, 09:56 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMNewbstar View Post
2. I checked the log books and it's been serviced at a reputable place. The first service was done at 25,000 km which is reasonable given it's vehicle condition based servicing. However, the first service was done more than one year after the car had been purchased: a May 2008 compliance date car serviced for the first time in March 2010.
On E90 LCIs, service seems to be condition based or every 12 months (aka "Vehicle Check"), whichever occurs first.
My 2009 E90 has prompted the Vehicle Check service (and been serviced) 3 times, even though it still has less than 20K on the clock.

I don't know if pre-LCI E92s have the same service regime.

Just speculating, but it's possible the car may have been used as a demo for a period and then the service indicators reset when it was eventually sold (thereby delaying the first service).
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      07-30-2013, 01:23 PM   #9
Jin-ActiveMotorwerke
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From my many years experience from BMW, i can tell you that every aluminium trim piece on the driver's door is dented/scratched.
And the service is normal, an vehicle check is once a year, that's right. But vehicle check service is useless. Nothing is done during that service. Oil service is 25000kms/24months.
And Allianz is the best warranty you can get other than the factory one. And I don't think an aftermarket exhaust voids the warranty.
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      07-30-2013, 06:14 PM   #10
Chucky
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Mine isn't dented.
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      07-31-2013, 02:35 AM   #11
KUSH
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Mine had dents in it (silver) made them replace them. My second e90 325i a good reliable car still has plenty of power. Once a year or 25,000 is the best interval my last one had 180,000 kms on it before I wrote it off & ran like a dream. I looked at 335i & although they are a nice car they are prone to carbon build up & fuel pump issues that can leave you stranded. Buy it you will be happy with it.
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      07-31-2013, 05:49 AM   #12
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look at the rest of the interior as a better guide to condition. if all else checks out either replace the 2 trim panels or use it as a perfect excuse for custon interior wrap.

service history sounds normal provided the kms stack up

wrap the exterior as u please but are u really unhappy with the colour? if i were to vynil wrap it would be to standout with a flat colour or possibly business advertising reasons etc.

id not bother with extended THIRD PARTY warranty personally. some companies can try to wriggle out of paying saying that some faults are regular wear and tear. Use the dough for a new exhaust ( which no way an warranty company would detect a bmw performance exhaust anyway)
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      07-31-2013, 09:56 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KUSH View Post
Mine had dents in it (silver) made them replace them. My second e90 325i a good reliable car still has plenty of power. Once a year or 25,000 is the best interval my last one had 180,000 kms on it before I wrote it off & ran like a dream. I looked at 335i & although they are a nice car they are prone to carbon build up & fuel pump issues that can leave you stranded. Buy it you will be happy with it.
the fuel pump issue is a thing of the past now... don't think it was as a big deal here, compared to the USA. That being said I'm on my original pump.
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      08-01-2013, 05:15 AM   #14
bmshez
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Thanks to everyone for taking the time to give such meaningful insights, much appreciated!

This thread has been a bit of a rollercoaster in that I'm getting so many conflicting points of view haha.

Cheers kaitan - the extended warranty is an extension to manufacturer's warranty provided by Allianz. I think it'll cost $1500-$2000. Spot on re the interior.

Cheers JJH - I thought the rest of the interior was in good nick except, from memory, that cubby/cupholder area in between the back two seats seemed a bit worn.

Cheers Stuart, nice to get some support for the 325i once in a while haha! Glad to hear the service intervals aren't too abnormal. Any suggestions on - if I buy this one - what I should do first up in terms of maybe giving the car a full refresh e.g. oil change etc.?

Thanks tony20009 for getting your son to check your car from half a world away! My initial feeling was just that: there are just too many little things that are causing me dissonance. However, after thinking about it further and having realised how rare M Sport 325is are in my price range, I've started reconsidering.

Good tips, thanks keungleung! I'm gonna check out a few more E92s this weekend.

Thanks Jin but how much would you say is excessive when it comes to scratches/dints? On the drivers side, it was almost from the front of the trim to the end of it. I wish I had taken a photo. Same deal on the passenger except much fewer.

Thanks KUSH - I wonder if there's any chance to get the trim replaced through the Allianz Warranty lol?

Quote:
Originally Posted by youraveragepunter View Post
a perfect excuse for custon interior wrap.
My thoughts exactly!


Now, the plot thickens...

1. It's Crimson Red and the reason I'm considering the vinyl wrap is because - although the colour looks fine in person - I feel it almost goes against the spirit of the non-M E92: I want a sleek understated car that doesn't need to announce itself with it's loud paint job. However, I'm faily sure that the colour will grow on me. This does give me the opportunity to get a custom vinyl wrap to make the car more unique!

2. The dealer only allows RACV inspections instead of pre-purchase inspections through independant specialists. The RACV inspection would be pretty worthless unless there are BMW specialists on staff at RACV!

What's the (revised) verdict guys? Thanks!
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      08-01-2013, 05:37 AM   #15
youraveragepunter
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I love the crimson red...such a rare colour. looks perfectly classy with black grills/window trims. go for it!!

Stuff RACV checks and extended warranties. Buy from a reputable dealer and you should be able to tell a lot about the cars treatment by looking and listening to it. Even if u need to fix a few things up you'll be ahead
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      08-01-2013, 06:53 PM   #16
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Some follow up comments:

The ‘worn’ look in the cubby/cupholder is a common problem. It is not so much worn as a known issue in the finish of the material – the clear layer peels away and is more age related. It can also happen on the window switch surround on the driver’s door and on the multi-function buttons on the steering wheel. The problem was fixed by a change in material in later cars.

You need to seriously think about whether you go for this one if you don’t like the colour. I think the red is a great colour and not as loud as a bright red. It would be a pity to have the expense of a wrap just to hide it – maybe the best option is to let it go or perhaps enjoy the fact that it is more unique and not the so common black or shades of silver!

If the dealer only ‘allows’ RACV inspections, you would really have to ask why. Seems unreasonable to me, maybe dodgy? Insist on an independent or walk away. I have great faith in State Roads to do pre-purchase inspections before handing over any money. I've had all my recent BMWs checked out by them (in Sydney and Melbourne) and were impressed with how thorough they are. And yes, they always sent out inspectors experienced with BMWs each time.

Last edited by JJH_335; 08-01-2013 at 06:59 PM.
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      08-01-2013, 09:14 PM   #17
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I consider myself to be a bit anal when it comes to caring for my car , i had a 325 with the same Aluminium Trim , i bought the car brand new and when i sold it there were dents ect in the door trim , in my opinion it is not a good indication on how the rest of car was treated especially if the rest of the trim and bodywork are in good condition.

if you are getting the extended warranty , why bother with the pre purchase inspection , RACV inspected my current vehicle prior to purchase and it wasnt really worth the cost.

i would suggest if the color is not to your liking and you have these other concerns , dont buy it
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      08-01-2013, 09:45 PM   #18
KUSH
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check this out the warranty may be a problem or maybe just a dealer BMW warranty may be better http://www.e90post.com/forums/showth...hlight=allianz
I know that when you have warranty BMW always fix everything you want LOL Im sure the trim will be no problem.
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      08-01-2013, 11:00 PM   #19
systech
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Buy mine !

Just buy my E92 335i DCT


See http://www.carsales.com.au/private/d.../?Cr=0&sdmvc=1
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      08-11-2013, 01:03 AM   #20
bmshez
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Thanks everyone for your insights, I ended up getting the car! It's been amazing so far, drove 260km around Melbourne / Dandenong Ranges just in one day haha.

Would highly recommend Yarra Boulevard in the Kew area as a place to test the steering .
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      08-13-2013, 07:58 PM   #21
m0nk3y
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMNewbstar View Post
Thanks everyone for your insights, I ended up getting the car! It's been amazing so far, drove 260km around Melbourne / Dandenong Ranges just in one day haha.

Would highly recommend Yarra Boulevard in the Kew area as a place to test the steering .
did you end up for a 325 or 335? can i ask how much it was?

i'm looking at a 2009 335, but they are so damn exp compared to even a 2008 model - i'm talking $16k difference in the price

i want something 2009+ because i want the new iDrive system - the same as the one in my brother's M3

why???
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      08-13-2013, 08:04 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m0nk3y View Post
did you end up for a 325 or 335? can i ask how much it was?

i'm looking at a 2009 335, but they are so damn exp compared to even a 2008 model - i'm talking $16k difference in the price

i want something 2009+ because i want the new iDrive system - the same as the one in my brother's M3

why???
Probably because of the availability of the superior iDrive system, and the DCT which is infinitely superior to the old Steptronic slushbox!

Buy mine...

http://www.carsales.com.au/private/d.../?Cr=0&sdmvc=1
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