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Yay or Nay - F30/31 BMW as a daily

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    Yay or Nay - F30/31 BMW as a daily

    Wiseheads, I'm starting to think about a new daily. Requirements are reasonably late model (2015+), not too big - we want something smaller than the X5 we currently have, and I want to avoid all the recent malarkey with DSG so that rules out a lot of VAG stuff. The 320i/328i and 330i from this era seem to be a good package with a lot of kit, and higher km cars look like pretty good value.

    Does anyone have any experience with these? Tips, tricks or watchouts would be welcome.

    230SL 'Pagoda' | 911 SC Targa | FC RX-7 Infini

    #2
    Looking to upgrade my E91 to an F31 so whilst I don't own one have a bit of an idea.

    From about late 2015 builds (aka LCI) they are the newer B48 vs the older N20 so should be a better thing in terms of some of the N20 problems. Easy to tell from the rear tail lights if it's a "2016" model but really built in 2015. Reverse lights high is old, reverse lights low in the cluster is LCI.

    328i is the older N20 higher spec engine. 330i is the higher spec B48 so that's a dead giveaway.

    320i vs 328i/330i is mostly a tune and some intake from my understanding and there are plugin tunes that should get 320i moving a bit better.

    Can't get 340i F31s here unfortunately (or G31 M340i either )

    ZF 8 speed auto didn't change much so old or new it's a pretty good thing either way.

    I think they're similar reliability wise to most BMWs. Be prepared to pay for some stupid electronic switch/module etc. Parts from overseas always cheaper of course.

    Dealer servicing is a total ripoff if you go new enough to have warranty.

    Warranty starts from date of first registration. I missed out on an older mid 2016 build that hadn't be registered until 2018 somehow. So factory warranty was still good. You won't find that often of course but good to know.

    330i/328i will have more options by default for not a huge amount more price so worth looking out for them. Stuff like widescreen for the radio/nav etc is usually default. Again the LCI from about late 2015 is a good step forward there.

    Main thing stopping me is I'm really looking for an active cruise F31 and that's a pretty rare thing.

    There are probably/possibly better cars for me, but I'm some sort of BMW tragic. Was also looking at near new Octavia/Superb wagons though.
    Last edited by Shonky; 09-02-20, 05:03 PM.

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      #3
      Also F3x were bagged a bit for a loss of steering feel, that the 3 series was known for.

      Run flat tyres are the norm if you're against them. I don't think the Bridgestones on my E91 are that bad really.

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        #4
        Thanks mate - didn't realise that about the tail lights, thanks for the tip!

        I've noticed a surprising amount of interior wear on the early cars so trying to find a good deal on a newer LCI car if I can. I did read that the adaptive steering option was worth having but it'd be pretty hard to find one I guess.
        230SL 'Pagoda' | 911 SC Targa | FC RX-7 Infini

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          #5
          I dont think they have had decent steering feel since the E46. Especially when they went to electric power steering. So i wouldn't let that sway your judgement. Generally pretty heavy feeling and kind of lifeless but direct, so don't need a lot of steering input. Everytime I drive my E90 again it strikes me as odd how little I have to actually turn the wheel to make large steering inputs. Thats just bmw now. Interiors have been shit since E90's. That matt look they were going for, whatever they coat interior pieces in is terrible and Im sure the leather has taken a shit. Not just the bolsters as you kinda expect, but the door card inserts too.
          Originally posted by Buford T. Justice
          This happens every time one of these floozies starts poontangin' around with those show folk fags.

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            #6
            I reckon my E91 M Sport 323i has decent feel. E91 interior is pretty average and ours is falling apart in a few places - not sure how much better F31 is but I can see at least one thing they've fixed from the E9x. Can't say I've noticed interior wear being worse on F31s I've been looking at.

            Also get the last 7 digits of the VIN (which is the serial number) to check options and also gives you a heads up if it's an import) here:
            http://bimmer.work/
            or
            https://carinfo.kiev.ua/cars/vin/bmw/vin_check

            Former one hasn't been working for some for me lately.

            Comment


              #7
              Nopics has an f31 daily. It's a good thing and touch wood it's been ok. Some interior is a bit fragile and she has scratched the odd thing with minimal contact. It's a 320i, could really do with being a 328!
              POWER CHIP free since 2003.

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                #8
                I cant follow BMW models after E46. Hope that helps!
                I climbed Mt Druitt

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                  #9
                  My old man has an F30 LCI 320i with the M sport pack, and an F80 LCI M3 Competition - I've driven both a fair bit.
                  The 320i is an impressive bit of car for the money - it drives well, comfort is good, and interior wise there isn't a lot between the 320i and the M3 (besides the sporty bits). I personally hate the M sport/M3 steering wheel - as it's way too thick (let alone putting racing gloves on and punting the M3 around a track - the steering wheel is nearly unusable for me with gloves)

                  Overall - I'm also personally looking at getting one as a daily, as they're depreciating fast (same with the F10 5 series) thanks to the SUV appetite that everyone seems to have these days.
                  Obligatory skid pic

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by bigshipengine.jpg View Post
                    I cant follow BMW models after E46. Hope that helps!
                    Super helpful, cheers!

                    Thanks fellas. Agree they're not what they used to be but seems to tick enough boxes for what I need it for, unless F80s take a sudden plunge in value.
                    230SL 'Pagoda' | 911 SC Targa | FC RX-7 Infini

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Just don't buy the one that matches what I want... /i

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                        #12
                        Originally posted by break View Post
                        My old man has an F30 LCI 320i with the M sport pack, and an F80 LCI M3 Competition - I've driven both a fair bit.
                        The 320i is an impressive bit of car for the money - it drives well, comfort is good, and interior wise there isn't a lot between the 320i and the M3 (besides the sporty bits). I personally hate the M sport/M3 steering wheel - as it's way too thick (let alone putting racing gloves on and punting the M3 around a track - the steering wheel is nearly unusable for me with gloves)

                        Overall - I'm also personally looking at getting one as a daily, as they're depreciating fast (same with the F10 5 series) thanks to the SUV appetite that everyone seems to have these days.
                        How gutless does the 320i feel? I was thinking the 320d might be a better bet?
                        "If you can make black marks on a straight from the time you turn out of a corner until the braking point of the next turn, then you have enough horsepower." - Mark Donahue Penske Porsche 917

                        "In Japan we no give fark for Subaru" - Trust Japan Technical Director
                        (TM - AVENGE)

                        "You can never have enough power. I remember when we had Group B cars... THEN we had enough power!"
                        Juha Kankkunen - Rally of Argentina '02

                        Comment


                          #13
                          I'm going to be controversial here and say if you want a comfortable luxury car without a great deal of performance you shouldn't be buying a BMW.

                          2015 Lexus IS250s are about the same price, will have similar performance and you'll be able to literally drive the thing for another decade with only minor maintenance.

                          We have a 2017 Lexus IS200t and 2017 M140i and I'd say the BMW is only worth it over the Lexus if you actually want to go fast. I wouldn't buy any modern BMW unless you were getting a 3L turbo at least.

                          Basically, if I wanted a slowish luxury car to be bored by I'd buy the one that wasn't going to break. Going fast is another matter.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Fair call. I'm after a wagon (and SUVs are out) though.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by itsnotagsr View Post
                              How gutless does the 320i feel? I was thinking the 320d might be a better bet?
                              Near 300Nm of torque from bugger all rpm meant it felt perfectly fine for what it needed to be.
                              Enough torque to feel good to drive, but certainly, I don't expect it pulls quite so strong down low as the 400Nm+ diesel models.

                              Funny enough - comparing the 320i vs the M3 competition in their 'Comfort' mode settings, they feel quite similar in terms of speed when driven as a normal car, in normal traffic conditions (as the M3 shifts so damn early to save fuel in that mode). That, of course, changes dramatically once you go past 1/3 throttle in the M3

                              Obligatory skid pic

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