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      07-23-2012, 08:06 PM   #487
world_traveler
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Drives: 2006 E90 325i ZSP 6-spd manual
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Pennsylvania

Posts: 24
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RPM90, thanks for your detailed reply. The car I drove was a Sportline with 8-spd auto. Not sure whether it had all-seasons but suspect it might have had. (On my E90 I have staggered RE050A II RFTs which I swap for Bridgestone Blizzak LM22 RFTs for winter).

The 8-spd auto is much better than the old GM 6-spd in the E90 -- with daily loaners I've found that that transmission stumbled and hunted from a stand still in a way that a Chevy Malibu would never do. The F30 8-spd on the 328i felt better, but nowhere near as satisfying as the E90 335d with the 6-spd ZF auto, by far the best application of an auto in a US market 3 series I've driven and much more satisfying than the E90 335i. A really satisfactory application of an auto transmission depends on one thing above all else: bucket-loads of bottom end tubthumping torque (e.g, Chevy small block).

I'm attracted to the variable shock settings on the M-Adaptive suspension, but am wary of the variable ratio steering that comes with it. I am not sure whether the 2012 F30 I drove had it. The variable ratio steering that I drove on a tester when I bought my E90 in 2006 was horrible compared to the standard setup -- unnatural feeling and with no advantages -- in fact the car enthusiast salesman helping me at that time advised me to stay well away from it.

I am glad to see that HIDs are now a standalone package for 2013, but why do I now have to purchase thousands of dollars worth of junk to get sat radio, now standard equipment on a lowly Chevy? BMW needs to hear loud and clear that their pricing strategy reeks of cynicism and lack of respect for the customer. Out of interest I took a look at the 5-series pricing, where they are now forcing an interior upgrade on anyone who wants the sport package. This is a new approach at BMW, the last refuge of the sacred standalone option list, and is not to be welcomed. Let's all raise our collective voices in the hope that BMW will revert to the full options list pricing they promised would accompany the new "lines".
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