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Z Selection Dilema

Discussion in 'E85/E86 Z4 M roadster/coupe (2006-2008)' started by feldspar, Apr 28, 2009.

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    feldspar

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    In recent months I've test driven the following roadsters, in search of the "one" to buy: 2008-3.0i w/6 speed manual, 2006-3.0si w/tiptronic, and 2006-M. I have to admit that I loved each one, since the flavor of each was really fun. Each seemed to handle well, and have good power. Test drives are not necessarily good measures of what it's like to live with a car for the long haul. So, I need some good rationale for purchase decision. I've read Satch - he loved the 1-week affair with the 2.0 in Europe, and he seems to love his M. That doesn't help me much, though. I know that the M has class beating performance, but - in the real world is it hard to live with? What downsides exist -other than maintenance, for one. Fuel milage - but how much of a drop in comparison to the other cars, in real world driving (not race track)? Noise and vibration comparisons, etc.?
    Thanks,
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    330indy1

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    Really good questions.
    Similar to those I had when I started the search.
    I drove them first as well...

    The killers for me:
    • The deal on the M I found --- A new untitled '06 M (110 miles) for less than an '08 3.0 base model. This will probably influence your decision the most. I do recommend an MT car whichever you choose. It is very rewarding with any of the drivetrain setups...
    • The suspension and real tires of the M; the ride beats the run-flats
    • The hydraulic steering of the M, as opposed to electric assist
    • The S54 engine (great response, and a dipstick too!)
    • The value down the road, although I will keep for a long time
    • "M maintenance" doesn't scare me. :eek:

    It is a tight car, solid, and surprisingly quiet
    Mileage is not bad. Depends on your habits



    good luck, and have fun !!
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    Satch SoSoCalifortified

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    Which Z for me?!

    Well, I love my M roadster for many reasons (not the least of which is $20,000 under sticker and CPO certification). It is not any less "tight" and reliable than the non-M cars, I believe.

    However, I would be happy with a 3.0is. That's the N52 engine, I believe, with around 260 horses---more than the E36 M3 when it came out in 1995!

    Run-flats are a non-issue. The M cars have a bottle of goo and a compressor, and I also carry a plug set in case I get a nail through the tread.

    Mileage, I admit, is not what one might wish: 22 if I'm being good. Why my wife's 335i consistently gets 27-plus at 75 miles an houir is beyond me.

    The biggest disadvantage to the M cars is that they steal some of the trunk for the battery. That's more important than you think if you're driving across the country!

    The good news: the new Z4 is going to kill the prices of the Z4s already extant: bargains to be had.

    The bad news: You really, really want the new Z4, an amazing car (see the June Roundel). However, the twin-turbo version STARTS at over $52,000. . .
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    feldspar

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    thanks for the thoughtful responses -
    re the new Z4 - that's just what I didn't need to hear! BMW does that all the time - just when the existing model gets to the point where I can afford what is the currently available point of excellence - they go and raise the bar again!

    I am leaning towards the M car. A few miles per gallon seems to be a nice gain with the 3.0 cars, but in reality the $ savings over a year of occasional driving will not mean that much to the bank account. My commuter is a very reliable, semi-fun turbo VW wagon. And it only gets 27 mpg with it's automatic tranny.

    Dealers are pricing fairly agressively at this time, though. After a car has been on the lot for 8-weeks they seem to like to deal a little more.

    Maybe this weekend....

    eagle60 guest

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    I have owned an 05 Z4 2.5, an 06 Z4 3.0i and now have an 07 Z4 M. All great cars. I agree with 290064 completely. Other observations I might add are as follows.

    The Z4 M drives and handles quite a bit differently from the Z4 2.5i//3.0i. Probably due to the heavy duty clutch and the modified M3 suspension (and of course 330hp). The steering is much, much better than the standard Z4. Gas mileage is around 22-24 highway and 15-17 city. It took me several days to be able to drive the M as smooth as the standard Z4, but once I mastered it, it is sooo much more fun. Get the M you will never be sorry.....I found my 07 M in Jan 08. It was an untitled left over with 400 miles and I got it for $14k off sticker. Which was less that an 08 3.0si.
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    330indy1

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    Did you remove the CDV yet? Makes a nice improvement! Although they all have them. I guess there are other factors as you mentioned...

    eagle60 guest

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    I guess I am dumb, but what is the CDV?

    eagle60 guest

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    what is the CDV?
    • Member

    330indy1

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    eagle60 guest

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    Thanks, I will look into that.....
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    Satch SoSoCalifortified

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    Z4 reviews: Who you gonna believe?!

    Well, hey, I can only offer my opinion. As to your points:

    the weight

    Um, yeah, the car is heavier than it would be without electric seats, airbags, an aluminum roof, the motors it takes to move the aluminum roof, et cetera et cetera. Today's cars are heavy sumbitches. That's why they have galumptious horsepower and big brakes.

    the ride (soft)

    What idiot complained about the soft ride? Didn't he notice the suspension settings? Set the sumbitch in Sport Plus and get back to me.

    the gizmos

    Alas, BMW is in the business of supplying what the market wants. You don't want iDrive and the new nav system that comes with it? Fine---it's optional. So are most of the gizmos---but those (like the wahoo sound system) that are uninportant to me are the Hot Setup for some. And I would not buy a new Z4 WITHOUT the iDrive/nav system! Also, though I am WAY impressed with the DCT gearbox, I would happily save a couple grand with a six-speed.

    the price !!!

    Oh, horse puckey. Bill Howard wrote about the 20-some-odd percent increase in the Z4's cost over the previous model, but as one reader pointed out, his comparisons are flawed. The Z435i should not be compared with the previous 3.0si; that car compares best with the new Z43.0i---same N52 engine---which gives it something like a 7% premium. If you compare the Z435i with the Z4 M roadster (which has a few more horsepower but less torque), you have a $51,000 car---the new Z4---that you can easily option up to $60,000. My roadster had an MSRP of $49,000, with options that brought it to about $58,000 sticker---without navigation. And no folding hardtop, hence no visibility when the top is up. I figure I could put together a Z435i with what I want for about Sixty Large---and if I weren't still making payments on my roadster, that's exactly what I'd do.

    I'm not the only one who likes the Z4. Jackie Jouret (Bimmer Magazine editor) recently spent some time in one and loves it.

    Would she lie?
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    Kurt Helm

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    Very cool news...like Satch, I thought I'd lost my ability to shift.
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    feldspar

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    Ongoing dilema, with past selections

    Well, since the question I posed about selection being a dilema - I've owned a 2006 steptronic equipped 3.0i for a year, and now for a few months the trade into a 2007 3.0si manual/sport/premium. I have to admit that the si engine is very sweet! No lack of power, ever - at least not on the roads that I drive. The torque is plentiful, yet it does like to rev, and the power band is a real thrill. I guess you could say that a roadster is something that you do have to learn how to drive, or at least learn how to take advantage of it's special way of moving down the road. Small and quick, very tight reflexes, and responses to a twisty road. My 525i exhibits the same balance, though. That 50/50 weight distribution and the suspension tuning in a BMW must be a family trait.

    Anyway, after two months in the si - I still feel the need for the M. Will that need go away??? What do I do?!
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    330indy1

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    Life is too short.
    Get an M, while you can find a fairly low mileage one...

    HockeySTYX guest

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    Satch, thank you for making my morning when I read your post. :)

    ....hoot owl. :D

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