2013 BMW M3Michael Hill - Newport Beach, CA08/08/2016
Talk about a car that delivers power that will throw you back in the seat. Everything about this car is amazing. EDC suspension settings allow you to adjust the stiffness of the ride if your just city driving or tighten it up for mountain roads or track days. If there is a drawback to the car it is the gas mileage. Expect to be the fastest car from gas station to gas station but don't let that hold you back from experiencing 400+ horsepower out of a car that will leave others in the dust.
2006 M3 Convertible
2006 BMW M3SoCal Skill - Los Angeles05/19/2012
The 2006 M3 Convertible is a car that has always appealed to me and when I moved to Southern California, there was no better opportunity to finally buy one.
The M3 combines head-turning looks and head-snapping performance. With the roof up or down, the car looks sleek and balanced from all angles. BMW have not gone over the top with the "M" modifications on the E46 model - flared wheel arches, the subtle power domed hood, wider air intakes and the signature 4 port exhaust distinguish it from the standard 3 series and give it a more muscular stance with no over the top spoilers or air-scoops.
In terms of equipment and finish, the car is fully stacked from heated leather seats (with the cold weather option) to automatic environmental a/c. I went for an Alpine White with black roof and Black Leather / Titan Shadow interior and although the car is 6 years old, the finishes are still in excellent condition.
Performance-wise, the S54 in-line 6 cylinder produces 333bhp from 3.2 litres which will propel it from 0 to 60 in around 5.5 seconds. The convertible is heavier than the coupe alternative but it still feels balanced and nimble in the corners giving you confidence for the twisty bits.
I have only owned the car for 7 weeks so my comments on reliability are not going to be the most fruitful, but all the equipment and mechanics, inside and out, work and work-well with robust build quality and finish - although I can imagine service and replacement parts will be expensive.
I did quite a lot of research into the M3 before purchasing and viewed plenty of examples. I ended up paying out a little more than I originally budgeted for to get something in good condition. There are examples out there for what seem a decent price but scrutiny pays off in the used performance car market. I aimed for low mileage and something that has been looked after, not raced, with a full service history. It pays to be patient to buy a car like this with confidence.
My only negative feedback I can give about the M3 is that it is thirsty in the city (15mpg), there is no spare tire, the back seats can be cramped with the roof up and the engine note is a little mundane up to 3000 revs (let loose beyond that and the exhaust pitches into the M3's moniker rasp).
For anyone who wants a car with stunning good looks and performance to match, for a reasonable budget, I would recommend the 2006 M3.
The ULTIMATE Driving Machine
2003 BMW M3Chaseman - Kansas City07/04/2008
I hesitated writing the review because of the ridiculous praise I have for this car. Somehow it will come back to bite me and I'll find out I have a lemon! But, I'm a rebel!
This car will NOT disappoint you. Obviously do your research (carfax, thorough test drive, etc.), but as another reviewer says, once you drive this car, it's over. You WILL buy.
I cannot pass 2 cars (note that I said PASS) without someone looking/oogling this car. It really is a burden to own in this $4 gas economy, because I find myself making up reasons to take it for a drive. Next thing I know, I've driven 30 miles!
Any foreign car can be an investment, and this car is no exception. Either be very prepared to do your research if you plan to self maintain, or be prepared to take it in to a dealer about twice a year. For what you get, a VERY acceptable tradeoff.
It's ridiculously fast, it gets about 20MPG, and it is a looker. I did choose SMG transmission, and though I love the paddle shifters, I wish I'd grabbed a manual because I'm a driving purist and SMG WILL take a bit to get used to. If you hit the gas at the wrong time and have the Sport button on, you can get some very unexpected results. Again, another acceptable tradeoff for the ability to have the car shift for me if I'm holding on to coffee or the mobile phone (yes, I'm guilty of the occasional driving-while-talking offense).
If you do buy, check out the extensive online resources and owner forums - very helpful!