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Advice on 320d model to buy

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1 hour ago, 3pedals said:

None of the cars being discussed here are "sports cars'  nor is the OP looking  'race car / race car driver advice'  so really none of the commentary using those contexts is relevant. 

Auto drivers commenting on the benefits of auto over manuals is a bit like Ford guys rubbishing Holdens - youv'e made your choice.

How are manuals better in traffic / slow crawl - easyyou can put them in neutral and put the hand brake on, coast if there is a slight decline and then snick it into gear when you need to  do it all the time on on ramps and sections of the motorway - try that in some of the late model autos, you can only put them into gear when you are stationary  because of those anti dumb driver interlocks --  so what do most auto drivers  do: exactly what the owners manual says not to do: leave it in drive and sit on the brake pedal for extended periods of time generating sh*t loads of heat , wasting fuel and cooking the gearbox. 

 

Not sure what rush hour traffic you drive in but my experience with a manual is; clutch in clutch out repeat a thousand times, all the while wearing it out prematurely. As to putting an auto into neutral there is no need, all the modern autos are designed to deal with the rigors of stop start traffic and as the torque converter is operating at slow speed with only minor slip the heat is far from excessive. As to DSG gearboxes my wife's Skoda is at 220k of which a great deal is city commuting and there are no issues. I am pretty sure a manual gearbox will have had a new clutch or two if it had to do that amount of rush hour crawling. Auto transmissions like most mechanical devices if serviced regularly present few problems. And yes we know BMW's sealed for life statement is wrong. 

And FWIW I have a manual again and I enjoy driving it, but it cant compare performance wise to a modern auto like a ZF8HP. 

Your comment re Ford vs Holden makes little sense apart from reinforcing how much you dislike them because they are not European. 

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exactly,

I thought auto coolers were for those people that tow large weights etc not idling in traffic.

a large percentage of  the manual cars for sale in Auckland have a clutch shudder from excessive overuse and people slipping them to creep forward.

to be sitting stopped on the north shore entry to the harbour bridge moving one car length if your lucky in a manual, how unnecessary

if your sitting through two green light changes on a hill, say at the top of queen to get into K road, you can muck around with handbrakes probably behind a bus so nill vision, many possible oh sh*t were not moving, oh hang on were off, no wait, hill starts 

or you could just sit there in an auto completely relaxed,

its a no brainer, traffic is stressful enough without torturing yourself unnecessarily.

not that any manual lover would change or admit any of that

I'd also like to see these owners manuals that don't recommend leaving an auto in drive, altho you underlined it so maybe its true, can't see the fuel difference between your manual in neutral and said auto either, engine is still running in both cases, oh wait autos have start/stop now, do manuals have that too?

and if you flicked your manual into neutral as you suggest and coast, thats an immediate fail of your drivers license test. you don't have control of the vehicle,

your argument is questionable

Edited by kwhelan
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I'm curious if your brakes are the same that are on the 135i. And what BMW would quote for that car. 

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50 minutes ago, Driftit said:

I'm curious if your brakes are the same that are on the 135i. And what BMW would quote for that car. 

It's all the same part sharing really, see https://www.bimmerworld.com/About-Us/F30-M-Sport-Brakes/ 

Genuinely surprised to see that the retrofit kits run a differently sized disc and pad for the same caliper though, but you can run the same larger discs and pads in the S2NH option blue calipers, as the caliper and mount is the same.

I'd be shocked if there wasn't multitudes of off the shelf pads on offer if you ran the brembo caliper part number past a competent brake specialist, some proper two piece rotors and not bmw pads would be a great option instead of getting tucked for stock garbage at the stealership, but that's a thread for another day.

 

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Thanks for all the replies to my question. It has been very helpful. I'm now leaning towards the auto and have driven 2013 models of both an Edition 30 and an M-Sport. Quite liked the M-Sport but not sure whether I'm committing myself to high ongoing service costs based on some of the comments above.

Thanks again for your advice.

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3 hours ago, LTK said:

Thanks for all the replies to my question. It has been very helpful. I'm now leaning towards the auto and have driven 2013 models of both an Edition 30 and an M-Sport. Quite liked the M-Sport but not sure whether I'm committing myself to high ongoing service costs based on some of the comments above.

Thanks again for your advice.

Maintenance is the key, servicing costs are not onerous but higher than something like a Toyota Corolla.  The Transmission will need a filter and fluid change every 70-100k and other wise its just normal servicing. As to the brakes look for standard brakes as opposed to the Blue brakes and even then you will find the rotors will last for a number of years and the pads can be changed for less expensive but just a good aftermarket pieces. 

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Driving in traffic is torture - really  10 to 30kmh is torture - no dynamic risk assessment no forward scanning just relax and listen to the tunes ? 

Maybe you should take public transport if you can't cope with the easiest driving on the planet, and all of that clutch shudder - probably due to worn out dual mass flywheel from inept driving 

And yes that start stop on the motorway  really does take its toll on the clutch - 283,000 km on the clock much of it in auckland traffic and original clutch still good for another 50,000km 

 

 In terms of gearbox servicing - fluids and filters should be done on operating hours , not distance travelled. 

1,000 hrs and 1500 km  a year in  a Tokyo traffic jam is far more damaging than 500  hours a year and 10,000 k in Auckland traffic.

Divide service intervals by 5 if you leave your car in drive when stopped  for extended periods. 

 I do the manual every 50,000 km - I'd do an Auto every 25,000 if I owned one ( I do shift out of drive every time I stop). 

 

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23 hours ago, Herbmiester said:

Not sure what rush hour traffic you drive in but my experience with a manual is; clutch in clutch out repeat a thousand times, all the while wearing it out prematurely. As to putting an auto into neutral there is no need, all the modern autos are designed to deal with the rigors of stop start traffic and as the torque converter is operating at slow speed with only minor slip the heat is far from excessive. As to DSG gearboxes my wife's Skoda is at 220k of which a great deal is city commuting and there are no issues. I am pretty sure a manual gearbox will have had a new clutch or two if it had to do that amount of rush hour crawling. Auto transmissions like most mechanical devices if serviced regularly present few problems. And yes we know BMW's sealed for life statement is wrong. 

And FWIW I have a manual again and I enjoy driving it, but it cant compare performance wise to a modern auto like a ZF8HP. 

Your comment re Ford vs Holden makes little sense apart from reinforcing how much you dislike them because they are not European. 

.I had absolutely no issues with daily driving an e34 535 manual for many years .The ONLY time i had trouble with it was stop go traffic for may many minutes.A 535 has qite a tall first gear(relative to other cars) and the clutch was really quite tough.By the end of the traffic jam my left leg was really tired and sore.I dont think that tricling along pushing clutch in and out will have much wear.Stop and go may be.A 320d will have a very light clutch compared to a 535,and the diesel at idle is very strong .My 120 d was also manual,and again i had no trouble with it.I would still prefer a manual even though my last two modern cars have been autos.

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13 minutes ago, kiwi535 said:

.I had absolutely no issues with daily driving an e34 535 manual for many years .The ONLY time i had trouble with it was stop go traffic for may many minutes.A 535 has qite a tall first gear(relative to other cars) and the clutch was really quite tough.By the end of the traffic jam my left leg was really tired and sore.I dont think that tricling along pushing clutch in and out will have much wear.Stop and go may be.A 320d will have a very light clutch compared to a 535,and the diesel at idle is very strong .My 120 d was also manual,and again i had no trouble with it.I would still prefer a manual even though my last two modern cars have been autos.

I heard a similar thing in the High Court of New Zealand once, the presiding judge described council's argument as "very deleterious to your case."

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11 hours ago, kiwi535 said:

.I had absolutely no issues with daily driving an e34 535 manual for many years .The ONLY time i had trouble with it was stop go traffic for may many minutes.A 535 has qite a tall first gear(relative to other cars) and the clutch was really quite tough.By the end of the traffic jam my left leg was really tired and sore.I dont think that tricling along pushing clutch in and out will have much wear.Stop and go may be.A 320d will have a very light clutch compared to a 535,and the diesel at idle is very strong .My 120 d was also manual,and again i had no trouble with it.I would still prefer a manual even though my last two modern cars have been autos.

Yes stop start is the killer and the main reason I dont drive a manual as my primary vehicle any more. It just about unavoidable in the Hutt to Wellington Crawl. 

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On 10/14/2020 at 11:21 PM, leichtbau said:

It's all the same part sharing really, see https://www.bimmerworld.com/About-Us/F30-M-Sport-Brakes/ 

Genuinely surprised to see that the retrofit kits run a differently sized disc and pad for the same caliper though, but you can run the same larger discs and pads in the S2NH option blue calipers, as the caliper and mount is the same.

I'd be shocked if there wasn't multitudes of off the shelf pads on offer if you ran the brembo caliper part number past a competent brake specialist, some proper two piece rotors and not bmw pads would be a great option instead of getting tucked for stock garbage at the stealership, but that's a thread for another day.

 

That is actually a really good guide.

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I have been doing a fair bit of research specifically around the timing chain issues. It seems to me that any of the cars fitted with the N47 can have it go at any time but its clear as mud as to when they improved the issues aside from the cars that are fitted with the B47. So if you buy a 320d make sure it has a service history and make sure it hasn't been serviced in line with the factory recommended intervals. 

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1 hour ago, MilesP said:

I have been doing a fair bit of research specifically around the timing chain issues. It seems to me that any of the cars fitted with the N47 can have it go at any time but its clear as mud as to when they improved the issues aside from the cars that are fitted with the B47. So if you buy a 320d make sure it has a service history and make sure it hasn't been serviced in line with the factory recommended intervals. 

So, I'm looking at 2013 320D M-Sport. Imported from Japan with N47 with about 95k on the clock. I haven't seen the service history yet and I'm not sure the dealer will have it. Do you think I'm risking expensive repairs with that car? I'm planning on getting a pre-purchase inspection done at Auckland City BMW. Are they likely to be able to give an indications whether the timing chain is likely to cause issues or is there no real way of knowing?

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9 minutes ago, LTK said:

So, I'm looking at 2013 320D M-Sport. Imported from Japan with N47 with about 95k on the clock. I haven't seen the service history yet and I'm not sure the dealer will have it. Do you think I'm risking expensive repairs with that car? --> yes

I'm planning on getting a pre-purchase inspection done at Auckland City BMW. Are they likely to be able to give an indications whether the timing chain is likely to cause issues or is there no real way of knowing? --> no

got a link to the car you're looking at?

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looks like a nice example, cheapest Msport on the market atm it seems.

Ive bought a car from them before. The battery died within a couple months and they organised a new one to be installed and coded when I called and told them about it.

The car I got was a very low mileage 325i wagon, like 4x,xxx kms but the suspension was really bad so ended up spending about 2000 to replace it all. Makes me wonder if they know what they are importing.. (I assume most dealers dont really care, its a pure numbers game anyway)

 

Regarding your one, since its at almost 100,000kms I suspect it will need some work but pretty much it will be the same story whichever one you buy thats for sale currently unless its privately owned with service history (unlikely, as most of the ones I see for sale are fresh imports).

You are taking a risk which ever one you buy so either have deep pockets with enough spare change to cover the bills or prepare to get it sorted after you buy it for peace of mind. I would budget $2-3000 for "everything". Otherwise you could get mechanical warranty and wait for things to die and claim it.

Either way, its suddenly going from a 20k car to a 23k car pretty much.

 

 

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4 minutes ago, qube said:

looks like a nice example, cheapest Msport on the market atm it seems.

Ive bought a car from them before. The battery died within a couple months and they organised a new one to be installed and coded when I called and told them about it.

The car I got was a very low mileage 325i wagon, like 4x,xxx kms but the suspension was really bad so ended up spending about 2000 to replace it all. Makes me wonder if they know what they are importing.. (I assume most dealers dont really care, its a pure numbers game anyway)

 

Regarding your one, since its at almost 100,000kms I suspect it will need some work but pretty much it will be the same story whichever one you buy thats for sale currently unless its privately owned with service history (unlikely, as most of the ones I see for sale are fresh imports).

You are taking a risk which ever one you buy so either have deep pockets with enough spare change to cover the bills or prepare to get it sorted after you buy it for peace of mind. I would budget $2-3000 for "everything". Otherwise you could get mechanical warranty and wait for things to die and claim it.

Either way, its suddenly going from a 20k car to a 23k car pretty much.

 

 

 

Thanks Qube. I appreciate you taking the time to have a look and giving me that feedback. The joys of buying a second hand car I guess - difficult to know if any problems will arise.

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1 hour ago, LTK said:

M-sport models do look a lot better in the F30 shape in my opinion, good colour as well - I think the dark greys suit the M-Sport look.

Good news is that this car does not have the more expensive M-Sport brake option (blue //M calipers) that was mentioned above as being expensive to update the pads. Wheels are also smaller size than most of the NZ new vehicles (18s v 19s) so tyres should be a little more costly when / if they need to be replaced, they might also be non-run flats which would be a bit cheaper again to replace.

Being Jap import it has got the alcantara (man made suede) interior rather than leather, but to me it is still a nice interior and hard wearing.

Buying any used car at around 100,000kms is always a bit of a gamble, even with homework and checking everything out there is still a risk as many problems can come up without any warning signs. So as Qube says, keep a bit of budget back for maintenance or problems. Plan for the worst, but hope for the best, as they say.

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2 hours ago, LTK said:

So, I'm looking at 2013 320D M-Sport. Imported from Japan with N47 with about 95k on the clock. I haven't seen the service history yet and I'm not sure the dealer will have it. Do you think I'm risking expensive repairs with that car? I'm planning on getting a pre-purchase inspection done at Auckland City BMW. Are they likely to be able to give an indications whether the timing chain is likely to cause issues or is there no real way of knowing?

If it has done some  reasonable trips would  be okay on an M47 or a B47 N47 I'd pass.

Big city traffic and the high associated operating temperatures are real killers. Plus the DPF is most likely clogged along with the EGR and manifold- have a look for the post on the manifold on my X3 - to see what I mean . Keep that in mind also if you are not one who gets out for a decent road trip every few weeks or couple of months. 

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13 hours ago, Herbmiester said:

Yes stop start is the killer and the main reason I dont drive a manual as my primary vehicle any more. It just about unavoidable in the Hutt to Wellington Crawl. 

to be fair, i go the other direction in the morning.Much less traffic 

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21 minutes ago, kiwi535 said:

to be fair, i go the other direction in the morning.Much less traffic 

Your the lucky one I used to do that in the 90's so much less traffic. Anything after 7am these days is a nightmare. 

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I was a die hard manual fan for a long time, 25+ cars prior to my old 135i were all manuals until I found myself needing to commute to the city daily.....not worth it. Bright side is I got a chance to learn how good modern autos are. Last auto I drove long term before my current zf8 was probably my BJ Familia 14 years ago. 

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