Hello from San Jose, CA. I just joined BMWCCA and signed up for my first motor sport event ever (an upcoming autocross event). I'm pretty excited about it and hope to meet fellow enthusiasts. Anyways, I figured I'd introduce myself and share my BMW story. Sorry in advanced for being a bit long. Before a year ago, I never owned a BMW. In fact, I never wanted to own one. I was pretty happy in my world of Japanese cars. My wife and I had our minds set on picking up an infiniti G37 coupe for our next "family" car, but I heard about the .9% financing BMW was having on their 08 models (09 models were right around the corner), so we thought it wouldn't hurt to just drop by the dealership and see what BMW was all about. We knew getting a similarly spec'd (option-wise) 3 series would have costed a good 5-10 grand more than the G37 we were looking at, but I figured it wouldn't hurt to try. So we go on a test drive and the car drove great. But being a new car with all that power (335i sedan) and RWD, I didn't dare try to push the car harder than I felt comfortable. So we get out of the car and it was nice, but we didn't feel it was $5-10k+ nice. As we were trying to walk away from the salesman, he asked me something that peaked my interest. He asks, "You mind if I take you guys for a quick spin to show you what the car is made of?". My wife and I were very interested so we hopped back in the car. We get back on the freeway and he takes an exit ramp to a somewhat secluded road. However this exit ramp is one of those circular ramps and he takes it at about 70-80mph. I thought for sure the car was going to fly off the ramp, but the tires hardly even made a squeal. I was amazed at the composure for such a large car. After we get off the ramp, he starts speaking about how controllable the car is while slaloming down the empty road. Then while going around 60 mph or so, he starts talking about how great the brakes were and then mashed on them as if our lives depended on it. Stopped on a dime. We came back the next day and purchased our first BMW. I think any normal person would have gone to his manager to get him fired, but that's how you sell a car to an enthusiast. My wife and I shared the car for awhile. As fun as the 335i is, it was an automatic (she can't drive a manual if her life depended on it). I've been a manual driver my whole life until I got married (ahh, the sacrifices of marriage.) So of course I felt there was something missing. The 3 series is also a big car. I'm more of a small car person. I like the Honda S2000 and the Lotus Exige, however, those cars aren't very practical. I also had my eye on the 1 series ever since it was announced in the US. I loved our 3, but I wanted something smaller, sportier, and a bit more fun to drive without sacrificing utility (I needed a good daily driver). What could be better than the 135i? So when it was time we needed to have 2 cars (about 6 months later), that ended up being my pick. I bought it in February 09 and and already have more miles than our 1 year old 3 series. You know what the funny part is? I work from home so all those miles are not from commuting to work. I have 10,000 miles on my 2009 1er because the car is just too much fun to drive. I love running errands and taking the long way home. I find every excuse to drive this car. Anyways, I think I might be hooked on this brand (although it's still early to really know). If you made it this far down my post, congrats! I know I said way more than I should. Here are a few photos of my 2009 Black Sapphire Metallic 135i. It's pretty much fully loaded minus sat radio and rear parking sensors. I've also done a few modifications since it's purchase (details in my signature). You can click on the images to view them larger.