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Discussion in 'Shiny Things' started by kawalaser, Jun 29, 2013.
You'll find out why you haven't joined an owners club previously.
One more perspective on the BMW's. Have driven a bunch of e46 M3's and was disappointed in the power band and weight, esp compared to e36 M3. Which is why I have kept the '95 that I bought brand new.
Got the 335xi as more of a luxo-GT car, with some mod potential due to the twin turbos. Turns out most of the M3 suspension bits swap over if you are so inclined. Only the rear for AWD but for RWD front pieces do as well (sway bars strut arms bushings etc.). My car has the M3 rear sway bar/bushings/brackets and some subframe inserts. You can swap out M3 subframe bushings lot of guys do that too. Big job though.
Clearly the V8 e9x M3 is the superior track car and autocross weapon, next to the C6 vette. But some relatively cheap engine mods a 335i will destroy it in a straight line. Very fat TQ curve from 2500 rpm to redline. Stock housing hybrid turbos (Rob Beck or Vargas) plus the mods I mention above 500/500 WHP/WTQ and a 335 runs with a stock C6 Z06 vette. Up to maybe 160 MPH from a roll. Neither M3 or 335 launch very well at a drag strip.
Personally I needed the AWD for where I live up in the mountains (and to some extent the comfort) otherwise I'd have gotten the e92 M3. The other mods I've done are Koni sports (rebound adjust) Eibach pro-kit springs (lower approx 1.4"), M3 rear sway, whiteline subframe bushing inserts. Handling is very neutral to mild oversteer, not harsh at all and handles colorado roads and snow well. Stock susp + the AWD tends to plow like a tractor.
Prices on early e9x M3's are dropping into the mid 30's.
Oh the one real glaring omission on factory 335 is the lack of a true LSD. They do some e-diff thing with the brakes which is not optimal. Of course you can slip in a Wavetrac or Qaiffe etc. Have not done that myself.
Last thing look up some of the air attack videos, 1/2 mile roll-on races at airstrips, some of these modded 335i's do real well against all kinds of interesting and very expensive machinery.
Anyway good luck on whatever you choose.
edit: I guess I forgot the main reason I went with the 335, the turbos. Living at 7600 ft ASL normally aspirated anything is down in power quite a bit.
No truer words ever spoken!
I am a vette guy through and through..but taking time out to talk..mush less run parade laps around town with the same car/street rod/bike/ect..
It's been a complete joy thus far.
Back on topic, last year my wife and I did a nice AZ/NM/UT/CO adv ride and we trailered up to Colorado Springs to start off. Buddy of ours there, Tom (Infracaninophile), has a really nice droptop E46 M3 and he was kind enough to let us do some local exploring with it. Had a good bit of mileage on the clock and was still just as sharp as can be. I'd been wanting a little four wheeled toy for a long time, and the time spent in Tom's sweet M3 cemented it. Chances are good that I'll have an E46 M3 someday. I find 'em to be a terrific combination of comfort, performance and aesthetics.
Hola Tom! Wish I was up there in it now!
These are sweet, about the only thing that could pry the vette out of its stall
how much coin to bring a base C5 up to Z06 performance range?
Ever notice the difference in body styles (coupe vs roadster hardtop)between the two? The Z06 is stiffer.
On C5s it is 243 heads with sodium filled valves, cam, tune, tires, wheels and sway bars. Changing the cam in a C5 sucks. The harmonic balancer is tight behind the steering rack. The first time I did mine I pulled the engine.
edit- thinner windows too.
I never liked the looks of the hard top/Z06. The C5 already has a fat ass as it is. Not having the hatch glass makes it look even fatter. imho.
The C6 trimmed the fat and looks much better to me.
That said, I would still get the M3.
The C5 should be extremely cheap to run and will have more performance and performance potential. If you don't need backseats I'd go with that all day.
Depending on budget you might also look for a used Cayman or even a used 996 911 (cheap, not entirely without good cause). I think 996 turbos are a pretty good buy b/c they avoid the standard 996 engine troubles but still haven't held their value very well. Will still be more money than a C5.
You might also consider a pontiac GTO. Great driving cars with good power and all the potential of an LS motor.