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New member looking for advice

Discussion in 'Member Introductions' started by Usp45nh, Aug 19, 2014.

    • Member

    Usp45nh

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    Hello, my wife and I are new members. Our car is a 05 Z4 3.0i. We love the car but want to do some track driving and don't want to modify it to meet track rules.

    If we want to drive on the track. We are looking at the 335i or a M3. Most of the driving will done on the road but want to get a car we can grow into on the track.

    Can anyone point me in the right direction w/regard to forums to pose this question and possibly find some answers?

    Thanks!
    Greg
    • Member

    MGarrison

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    Either is a great choice, but, really, if you want a more-optimal track machine & you can afford it, I'd say go for the M3.

    Welcome to the club & forums!
    • Member

    Usp45nh

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    • Member
    • Technical Service Advisor

    charlson89

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    Welcome and ditto on the M3 they are completely different animals on and off the track.
    • Member

    Usp45nh

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    If the budget was 30k do any specific years and or models stand out over others. I would say that track vs road duty would be 80% road and 20% track (realistically...)
    Thanks
    Greg
    • Member

    MGarrison

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    Aw man... ya had me all worked up, here I was vicariously imagining life with your Lime Rock edition E92 M3! ;)

    Doing a nationwide search on autotrader.com for M3 coupes, manual (naturally), $35k or less, it looks like $30k, or a bit over, could get you a higher-mileage E92 M3 coupe, (ca. 2008-2009) - there were just a few popping up in that price range. Didn't check other options like ebay, autotempest.com, etc.

    There's a slew of E46 M3's out there, looks like bottom $12k roundabouts, $15k generally, with higher mileages. If the budget's $30k, it might be worth considering half that or less for an E46 M3, and a chunk of the rest to fix, repair, service, or upgrade, as needed.

    Looks like there's any number of E36 M3's in the $10k range - careful searching of those on the craigslist ads that autotempest brings up might stand you a chance of finding a clean one; usual caveats apply, look for the cleanest you can find w/ recent service of major items & known issues (complete cooling system re-do, vanos pumps/seals/fixes, etc.). On E36's expect to be dealing w/ nuisance repairs like headliners, window regulators, etc. I think bimmerforums.com has some pretty extensive pinned threads on buyers guide what-to-look for stuff; E36's & E46's have been around for so long now their issues are well documented, so googling should get you to that stuff.

    The few E30's out there, great cars that they are, are highly priced and getting into classic, quasi-collector status - certainly useable as a d.d., but the 2 following successors are more easily had @ much more reasonable prices.
    • Member

    Usp45nh

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    How was my time with the E92? Lol. Got to draw a line some place, the 30k was arbitrary so could go either way if we find the right car.
    I like the idea of spending some on a car E46 and then putting the rest in to bring it up to speed (no pun intended here). We would rather spend some extra money and lessen the nuisance factor. I think we will stay away from the E30 area. It's been my experience that once things start to get "collectable" the more "interesting" it is to deal with them...
    Will check the bummer forums as well.
    Thanks again for the help! I start looking around.
    • Member

    mjmowrey

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    Usp45nh,
    Thanks for the post. I'm in a similar boat but not as close to making a purchase as you and your wife. Hopefully by now you've found the perfect gem as this post is about 4 months old. I had a 2003 e46 330i fully loaded that I truly loved but couldn't afford the maintenance so I was forced to part. Now that i'm in a much better financial place I'm back to the drawing board on the next BMW.
    Can you update us on what you went with and how much road/track time you're doing these days?
    • Member

    michaelbird

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    I'm late to the party here, but I'm going to throw in a few cents. If you are new to the track and sincerely want to learn how to drive better, the M3 is the last thing you want. Those cars are so capable and make up for your deficiencies so well that even a novice can go fast. But if you really want to learn and become better, then get yourself a nice 328 (E90/E92 or E46 if you can find a nice one) and learn to drive on that. Trust me, it will be several years and many driving events before you need to start worrying about more power and big sticky tires.

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