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Old 31st August 2008, 12:10   #1
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So I have been putting up with my C coupe and the associated problems for a year and half now. I bought it with 59,950 miles in May 2007 and ever since I owned it, it had been problem and dollars. As soon as the odo turned 60K, the computer controls on the steering broke and I barely managed to get the default view to the mileage reading (cannot sell the car without that display). Then came the noise from the back which has been bothering me for a year and half and couldn't diagnose it even after spending 1500 dollars. The alternator broke and the AC makes noise. The stepper motor broke and the sunroof broke. Well just about everything that can go wrong did go wrong right after the 60K mark. The struts, the control arms, engine mounts, transmission leak you name it it got it.

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I loved the car, it is a nice little coupe and a looker as well. It got looks wherever it went and that damn little thing had every luxury feature that has been ever put in a luxury car. And to think of it, it is a 2002 model! Mercedes doesnt give a passenger memory seat as options even in the newer C class and this little coupe had that! But the problems were irritating me... even my friends started noticing the noise. The noise was bad and with all the electronics broken, it just didnt feel like a luxury car anymore. This is a Mercedes and Mercedes were supposed to be built like tanks. My car however, the first batch of redisgned C coupe and being sold in the US for the first time in 2001, was built like a delicate crystal. I lost faith in the brand.

Two weeks back when I was driving home I started thinking. Should I spend some money on an already depreciating vehicle or should I sell it and get a new car. The decision was made in 10 seconds. Sell was the word. Went home, got online and checked some used cars. There is Saw this beauty and my new car decision was instantly made.

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It is going to be 3 Series. I gave S2000 considerable thought and Audi A4 a split second thought but decided to go with a 4 door as against a 2 seat convertible. I drove to the dealership and finalized the deal. Offered my car for trade-in and got a quote with which I was happy. Being the typical Indian that I am, I told the salesman that I will check out other cars before I make a decision. But the decision has already been made and he knew it. I go two days later and a new salesman appears. He quoted 3000 dollars less on the trade in value of merc and it was unacceptable to me. Just last year I spent 11,000 on the car and another 4000 in repairs. So I come home dejected that I still have a white elephant on my hands. I thought I am now stuck with it and started thinking about repairs. At the same time I put up my car on craigslist for sale. Lucky for me I found a buyer who paid 1500 less than what I asked for but the sale was prompt. I lost 6000 dollars on the car but I was happy. The very next day I drove to the BMW dealer and bought this beauty.

Year: 2006 325i
Miles: 37500
Exterior Color: Black Sapphire Metallic
Interior: Beige Leatherette
Options: Sport Package and Bi-Xenon
Transmission: 2.5 L I6 and 6MT
Wheels: 17" Steel sport wheels with 225/45 RFT

Ignore all the dirt on the car. It has been raining here past few days accompanies with dust storms which is very unsual. I just washed off the dirt, need to get it waxed.
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Old 31st August 2008, 12:23   #2
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The above pics were taken at South Mountain in Phoenix, which as the name suggests is a nice little mountain overlooking the city. Since I was busy last two weeks, I was only driving to and fro from work in this car. Today I wanted to go on a long drive but couldn't, so we went to South Mountain instead. Its 10 miles from my place and the weather was perfect.

The road leading to the top of the mountain was a 3.5 mile curvy road with a speed limit of 15 mph. While going there were two cars in front of me following the speed limits. After 2 miles I lost my patience and overtook them from the left lane and in 3rd gear. The acceleration is amazing in any gear, was able to easily overtake the slow car and get ahead of him. Then I took all curves at 40 - 45 mph and boy it is a great car. It just turns in the direction you point the wheel and without any effort or protest. At one point I was so overconfident that I accelerated on a turn and there was an on coming truck. I thought I was going to crash into it or end in a ditch but the car kept on its track and turned. Lovely vehicle this one.

I enjoyed 2 hrs there at the top taking pictures and conversing about Psychology and yoga with my good friend. On the way back I was against caught behind a slow moving truck. The car coasted for a mile in neutral, then I pulled over and let all vehicles pass me. After some time, I got onto the road again and gunned it. This time most of the turns were taken at 40 - 50 mph. I got to use the adaptive light feature on the car which turns the headlight in the direction I point the wheel. I also got to use the seat side bolster infaltion feature which can be used to adjust the width of the back rest.... the seat can be set to hold you tight during turns.


All in all, I am really happy with my purchase. The car is great to drive and what more, I got 38 mpg on freeway!!!
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Old 31st August 2008, 14:42   #3
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Congrats on the new buy! The pics of the Beemer are super; Mayavi you have a gift, honestly!
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Old 1st September 2008, 02:43   #4
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Good choice. I wouldn't have minded an E46 either. Gotta love the American obsession with chrome though
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Old 1st September 2008, 03:38   #5
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Yeah, I never liked Chrome wheels but these are OEM and it is not loud. I also realized that steel wheels are easy to clean and look shiny for a long time after clean.
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Old 1st September 2008, 04:54   #6
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She's a beauty, take good care of her
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Old 1st September 2008, 10:19   #7
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Nice pics Mayavi - excellent choice by going with the Beemer.

Just by looking at pics like this, my interest in BMWs increases and so does my dislike for Mercs.
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Old 1st September 2008, 11:19   #8
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I hear you on the electrical problems, I hear you. My '03 C180 was no better and a complete disgrace to all that the three-pointed star stands for. Thankfully, the '05 C220 is serving us well (touch wood ). 50K & counting. I never really liked the look of the C230 coupe, but they must be popular in the States...have seen plenty on the east coast. $6K is quite a lot of money to lose on a used car in a year. I guess you minimized your losses and exited at the right time.

BMW's of the same generation have usually been more reliable, hope your 325i treats you better in the reliability aspect. Your car looks awesome, great colour + interior combination. But what really caught my eye is this:

Quote:
Transmission: 2.5 L I6 and 6MT
Just how a high-revving BMW ought to be. 6 speed slick-shifting manual!! You are LUCKY to find such an example. If you don't mind sharing, how much did you pay for it? Does it have any warranty coverage?

Congratulations. Wish you many happy miles of cornering.

Last edited by GTO : 1st September 2008 at 11:23.
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Old 1st September 2008, 12:10   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Just how a high-revving BMW ought to be. 6 speed slick-shifting manual!! You are LUCKY to find such an example. If you don't mind sharing, how much did you pay for it? Does it have any warranty coverage?

Congratulations. Wish you many happy miles of cornering.
Thank you.

If I had bought a new car, this would have been the exact specification to which I would have orderd (+ premium package). With taxes, title and registration I paid 26.3K out the door. The car has 13K/1 year Full maintenance warranty and 2 years/50K miles CPO. The same car would sell for atleast 1000 - 2000 dollars less everywhere, but Arizona cars command a premium as they do not have any weather related wear and tear.
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Old 1st September 2008, 12:33   #10
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wow! a great buy Mayavi! congrats and happy driving!!!!

btw, how come you are not dropping in at the OTHER place these days?
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Old 1st September 2008, 20:02   #11
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Fantastic choice Mayavi! Congratulations & have fun!
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