I'm beginning to get cold feet with my M3 purchaseÖ..I was offered an M3 LSB demo from an out of state dealer I've been working with over the last several to purchase an M5. After much thought I decided to go for the M3 and take delivery with in the next couple of weeks. I've been hearing many rumors about the M3's having problems (i.e. piston rings leaking). The demos and customer ordered cars have been sitting in ports throughout the US for weeks pending delivery. This combined with the other M3 delays are making me very nervous about the reliability of the M3. Iím not trying to start any M3 rumors, that is why Iím posting this here to you M5 owners, but Iím thinking that I should go back to my local dealer that has 1 person on the M5 waiting list. Which means I could have the beast in the June/July timeframe and eliminate the M3 reliability issue.
I understand that the M3 and M5 are very different cars and I do not want to get into a debate about which car is better Ė I think they are both fantastic! I would be happy in either car Ė both have pros and cons for me.
Am I being paranoid about this M3 issue or should I listen to my gut and go back to the Anthracite M5 Iíve been drooling over for the last year?
personally, my suggestion is go with the m5, though most of us would be biased. i think the m3 is highly anticipated, and at this moment is the 'hot' car to have. but i feel in about a year, the car will be flooded here. well not flooded, but there will be lots of them here, finally i think there will more m3's then m5's. I think having the m5 will be more of a novelty, especially when pricing of the m3 goes up the 60k, i think that is alot for it imo.
so again to recap, the m5 will still imo be less seen, and hence more exclusive.
Im sure BMW will work out any problems that the M3 might have- that said.... I wouldnt touch a car designated as a demo. If you want a M3, my advice is: get one designated as a customer delivery car. If you want a M5 now, if you look hard enough you might find one. As to which one to get- aside from the obvious, the M5 can carry more people comfortably, do you want:
sports car first, luxury a close second [M3]
luxury car first, sports car a close second [M5]
I can tell you this- I prefer lighter, more nimble cars and the M5 continually impresses me; as did my former E36 M3.
If I didnt know better- Id say "M" stands for "magic"
[This message has been edited by MEnthusiast (edited 20 March 2001).]
I don't think realibility will be a problem with the M3. One of the reasons BMW has delayed bringing it to the U.S. was to work out any problems before us quick to complain American consumers got hold of it. If you need the room and want the V8 and want a little more exclusivity, go with the M5. If room is not important and you will want to track the car A LOT, go with the M3. But, there will be a lot more of the M3s on the road in a couple of years. The good part about that is there will be a lot more aftermarket modifications available. And , the sweet sweet sound of that straight six with six throttlebodies !
For me, a performance car largely boils down to the throttle/clutch/gearbox interactions. When on the track, braking and steering become much more important, but I'm talking about cruising down the highway.
In this regard it comes down to your style: Do you prefer rowing thru the gearbox with a peaky motor that wants to be revved, or do you prefer just stepping on the throttle and getting even thrust thru all RPMs that requires fewer shifts to get the job done?
I suspect the M3 will want to be wound to the redline in every gear whereas the M5 doesn't really care where the tach needle is; it just goes. If you care to downshift, it goes like hell but you don't need to for most situations.
[This message has been edited by MWM (edited 20 March 2001).]
Don't be impatient! If cars are your hobby, passion, and obsession, then why buy the car that you DON'T dream about? If you could walk in today and order an M3, would you pick LSB? Is it your dream color? Would it have the same options as the demo? Either order an M5 to your personal tastes, or wait in line and order an M3 in your personal tastes but whateve you do, buy the car you *really* want. You'll love it.
'00 E39 M5
'97 E39 540i six speed
A nice problem to have. To be brief, i was on the M3 waiting list in 7/00 but got an M5 in 12/00 instead. I've never second guessed that decision since. Given that DC traffic can be like a parking lot though, the M3 SMG option might be appealing. Otherwise, if the price differential isn't an issue, then life is too short to compromise - go with the 5...