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      10-17-2014, 02:06 AM   #1
cschiavoni
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Smile Buying my first BMW, need advice from the experts!

Hello everyone! I have been reading this forum for a while and am excited to finally be able to post.

I am finally in the position to buy a BMW, something I've wanted since I was oh, about five years old. I did a bit of research and have come to the conclusion that I prefer the E90 over the F30. I've been shopping around, trying to find the best deals and I have found these two and am looking for opinions on them:

2011 White 328xi SULEV - 64,697miles, premium & cold weather pkg. 2 owners, clean carfax. Listed as a fleet vehicle, then a lease, before being auctioned.
2011 Black 328xi SULEV - 45,000 miles, 2 owners, clean carfax. Listed as a personal vehicle for both owners, before auction.

Both are around $18K. I'm waiting on final offers because right now I'm using both offers the dealers have given me to try and haggle them each down. I have test driven both, and both ride smooth and beautifully.

My questions:

If I had the money I would prefer to buy a CPO from a BMW dealer, but the cars I'm looking at are normally $5K-$10K more at these dealers. In your opinion is it worth foregoing the deals I've found at smaller mom and pop dealers to save so you can buy a CPO from certified BMW?

I was for a while dead set on getting a 335i for the turbo, but decided against it due to the (from what I've read) higher probability of problems with the engines, and also due to the fact that I live in the middle of Washington, DC. Most of my driving is slow, stop and go, boring crap. I do go on long (8-20 hour) roadtrips every year, so the prospect of foregoing a turbo engine on those rides makes me a little sad. Am I really missing out on anything? I've done myself a favor and I haven't test driven a 335i yet. Should I just stay away from them as to not prematurely break my heart?

I have a very trusted mechanic who has been working on my cars for years (one of them German, VW). I would rather he look over the car but he is located an hour and a half from the dealership and it might be difficult to get the car there for a pre-purchase inspection. There are plenty of BMW dealerships in the area that could do a 110 point inspection but they all charge around $275. Many local dealerships charge $120-$175 for similar inspections. Is it worth taking it to BMW?

Do any of you have experience buying used cars that were sold at auctions? Even though the carfaxs are clean, it scares me a bit. I have heard stories about dealers waiting until months later to report accidents on auctioned vehicles until after they have been sold to unsuspecting customers.

Do SULEV engines mean anything, good or bad, to any of you? I know what it stands for, just wondering if they are more likely to have (or not have) problems.

I feel like both of these cars are good deals, and I really would like to make a decision on one of them tomorrow based on offers, but I am capable of waiting a bit longer (just not too long, got a 2K mile round trip to drive in November). Based on the information given what do you guys think?

My previous cars have been a 2001 Toyota Celica, 2003 VW Passat (horrid engine problems), and 2010 Mazda3 (current vehicle). Pretty excited to move on to something more desirable!
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      10-17-2014, 09:30 AM   #2
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If you have mechanic friend then get 335i
let him do PPI on cars,
and don't trust carfax reports.
Auctions are for dealers, where they buy defective cars and fix them and sell them for big profits
remember... cars with problems go to auctions, why would a clean car go to auction ????
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      10-17-2014, 10:50 AM   #3
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Get a cpo if you you don't want to deal with paying high repair bills. Since your looking at 328s I'm not sure what problems they have. I would play it safe an get a cpo cuz you never know if a cars good from small shops.
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      10-17-2014, 02:52 PM   #4
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From what i've seen on these forums, most who buy the 328i end up regretting it at some point and upgrading to the 335i. I wouldn't mind a 328i as a daily driver, but only if I knew I had a 335i or similar in the garage for the special days. If you are looking to own only one car, get the 335i and don't look back- life is short.
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      10-17-2014, 02:56 PM   #5
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I test drove a 328 then drove a 335, it will make the decision for you.
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      10-17-2014, 10:38 PM   #6
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i still have my 328i e92 and my 2010 e90 335xi
yes the 335i is much quicker and when you floor it you actually feel the surge push you into your seat, the 328i doesnt do that but its still quick and gets better mpg, 335i sounds better and more course, 328i is quiet.
328i has more linear power delivery and it quite fun on road trips and curvy roads as you get more power as the RPMS build up, so its very predictable, the 335i has a flat curve and is just shoves you and goes but loses the fun close to 6k rpm. The 328i wants to get redlined but 335i like to play in the mid rpm's.
328i feels lighter and more nimble, 335xi feels like a much heavier car, and u do feel it being nose heavy as the xi is more heavier up front already as is, add the turbo and its even more.
If i was to chose a daily driver that was practice it would probably be a 328i as a 335i is nice when you can spend money, but yes it does have problems. I just got a check engine light for a fuel evap canister, i had 5 328i before from varying from coupes, sedans, auto/stick, xi or just i's and they were reliable, had one engine coil die on my but it was after i washed my engine bay so coddle been my fault, and i always used to beat up on them and drove them hard, respected them but drove them hard after all warmed up.
If you dont like the f30 328i (which i am planning on getting) then the e90 328i is the best choice for all around car, especially traffic city driving.
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      10-18-2014, 04:57 PM   #7
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1. If you're really concerned about CPO, why not choose the car with 45k miles, still under warranty? You'll have 5k miles to get a better handle on the true condition and some recourse available.

2. A 5k to 10k diff for CPO on a 328i seems high. I think you would have to be incredibly unlucky to spend that kind of money on out of warranty repairs, prior to 100k. In my case, the only repair that hit me between 50-100k was a belt tensioner going bad, cost me $350.

3. If straight line performance is paramount, I suppose it's good to consider 335i. The fact that you're considering 328xi as your initial choice suggest that perhaps it is not paramount.

My current car is my first BMW. I don't intend to buy another BMW. I like mine enough to keep it and it would be stupid to sell it now that it's depreciated so much, but next car will be something different.
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      10-18-2014, 05:40 PM   #8
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As far as the 328 model goes, it is pretty bulletproof. The 335 is a rocket compared to the 328. I had a 328 for 36k miles and regret selling it, only time it saw the dealer was for regular maintenance. As far as auctions go, that's how all the mom and pop dealers get their inventory. Most leases are sent to auction because some of them carry insurance guaranteeing a certain value when sold at auction that the person leasing pays for. This was told to me by a lease turn in inspector. Negotiate the BMW inspection into the price paid if possible, if there is nothing to hide they should be for it.
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      10-23-2014, 07:46 AM   #9
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Thanks for the replies everyone. I still haven't decided but I am at least going to try and get a PPI done on the black 328 today. We'll see how that goes.
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      03-04-2015, 07:32 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Desert_Fox
From what i've seen on these forums, most who buy the 328i end up regretting it at some point and upgrading to the 335i. I wouldn't mind a 328i as a daily driver, but only if I knew I had a 335i or similar in the garage for the special days. If you are looking to own only one car, get the 335i and don't look back- life is short.
Meh.....get a m3....life's way too short to deal with the sloppy suspension bits on the 335.
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      03-05-2015, 05:59 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Needbmwpartzz View Post
Meh.....get a m3....life's way too short to deal with the sloppy suspension bits on the 335.
id have to say a 335d with aftermarket suspension and michelin pss tires would be funner than m3, my friend has an e92 m3, and i have a tuned 335d right now, and my car pulls harder than his, and handles just as good on city roads and highways, at a track it might be different, but my 500lbft of torque are pretty addictive lol
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      03-05-2015, 06:57 AM   #12
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go with a 335i .... YOLO

Just found this in another thread ..... watch it and be convinced

https://www.youtube.com/watch?featur...&v=mrvcdXHpAIY
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