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      12-26-2017, 03:03 PM   #1
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320i Sport ruined for 2018 and return of Design Tiers

I couldn't find the 320i Order Guide to confirm, but it looks like the stand alone ZSP sport package has been dropped for 2018 and replaced with a sport plus design that costs 2.7 times the price with the same stuff included.

If this is true, the 320i offers no real attraction anymore.

Also, Design Tiers - previously called "lines" are making some sort of return - similar to the first few years of the F30.

Looks like the 340i (with M sport included) and M3 (with no packages or options) are the best buys in the 3 series line for sports sedans again.

It seems like a crap shoot every year as to how you can configure any value into the 3 series as a basic drivers sedan. More data to add to my trepidation with the upcoming G20.

If I didn't recently make 2 new vehicle purchases, I'd be planning an order for a stripper M3 within the next 18 months - they are going to extend the F80 1 year past the F30 like they always do correct?
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      12-26-2017, 04:08 PM   #2
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I don’t believe M3 gets extended beyond F30 manufacturing - when e90 got EOP the M also stopped but e92M kept going.
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      12-26-2017, 04:18 PM   #3
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To make matters worse, the online configurator is a complete piece of sh#t.
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      12-27-2017, 05:16 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by metallicpea View Post
I couldn't find the 320i Order Guide to confirm, but it looks like the stand alone ZSP sport package has been dropped for 2018 and replaced with a sport plus design that costs 2.7 times the price with the same stuff included.

If this is true, the 320i offers no real attraction anymore.

Also, Design Tiers - previously called "lines" are making some sort of return - similar to the first few years of the F30.

Looks like the 340i (with M sport included) and M3 (with no packages or options) are the best buys in the 3 series line for sports sedans again.

It seems like a crap shoot every year as to how you can configure any value into the 3 series as a basic drivers sedan. More data to add to my trepidation with the upcoming G20.

If I didn't recently make 2 new vehicle purchases, I'd be planning an order for a stripper M3 within the next 18 months - they are going to extend the F80 1 year past the F30 like they always do correct?
The F80 will be out of production on 10/2018, so you will have to wait for the G80 on 2020.

Personally, until I see what the next M3 looks like, I'm eying a C63 S or maybe even a Quadrifoglio, which I thought I would never do.
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      12-27-2017, 11:08 AM   #5
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To make matters worse, the online configurator is a complete piece of sh#t.
+100


Seems like the 320i is just their "loss leader" now, so they can offer something below $300/mth.
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      12-27-2017, 11:25 AM   #6
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To make matters worse, the online configurator is a complete piece of sh#t.
Yes it is. This used to be a very helpful tool, now it is just a joke. Marketing seems to be out to lunch or having some sort of identity crisis.
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      12-27-2017, 11:38 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by metallicpea View Post
If I didn't recently make 2 new vehicle purchases, I'd be planning an order for a stripper M3 within the next 18 months - they are going to extend the F80 1 year past the F30 like they always do correct?
I always thought a base/stripper M3 was a pretty solid deal especially vs a loaded 340i. The M3 has all the basic goodness you need baked in and none of the optional stuff is what I’d personally consider “must have”.
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      12-27-2017, 12:55 PM   #8
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I always thought a base/stripper M3 was a pretty solid deal especially vs a loaded 340i. The M3 has all the basic goodness you need baked in and none of the optional stuff is what I’d personally consider “must have”.
Yes, and the cloth seats are killer. It was even better before the 340i got the M sport included, but now the 340i isn't such a bad deal either, plus it has more of a sleeper look.
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      12-28-2017, 02:58 AM   #9
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In all honesty, the 320 never really offered any real appeal. If you got a bare bones M Sport 328 stripped down, it would still have more options than the 328, more features, more power and you would pay what? A $3000 premium? There is really no case for a 320i at this point.
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      12-28-2017, 04:56 AM   #10
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340i has always offered the best value for money IMO in the US. You get more car than a fully loaded 330 for less money.
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      12-28-2017, 07:35 AM   #11
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In all honesty, the 320 never really offered any real appeal. If you got a bare bones M Sport 328 stripped down, it would still have more options than the 328, more features, more power and you would pay what? A $3000 premium? There is really no case for a 320i at this point.
Yes and no.

There was a point where the 320i was 5 to 6k less than a comparable 328i depending on features selected in sport trim. So with almost the same engine and same interior trim, it was much better value. I looked very closely at this 2 model years ago.

For example, 320i had ZSP sport package for 1,300 and 328 only had M-sport for significantly more. 320i had $700 LED option and 328i had only full lighting package for nearly double I think, etc So depending on the spec, you were paying a premium for the 328, then paying more for same or similar options, so the value started bad and just kept getting worse as you went along. Even now, the $5,350 premium for the 330 over the 320 seems like a joke for an engine tune and the privilege to open up the choice to spend even more on additional options. What does the base 330i really have extra over the 320i, and is it worth $5,350?

But if you are after a not so sporty luxury sedan with some pretty decent gadgets, I see why the 328/330 sells, as you can't even option lots of lux and tech stuff on the 320, but none of that is/was really important to me when all the functional sport stuff was available at a reasonable price.

I am speaking new purchase only, as I do not know know the residuals for lease, and the 328/330 is better value for buying in the used market as the supply is better.

Now you are right, as this tier stuff has changed things again.
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      12-28-2017, 07:45 AM   #12
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340i has always offered the best value for money IMO in the US. You get more car than a fully loaded 330 for less money.
It wasn't always. When the M sport was a premium on the 340i, the M3 was a much better value. M3 has always had all the sport features standard, so by the time you sported up the 340i, it was a no brainer to pay a few K more to get the M3. Now, with the M sport included in the 340i, it brings value back.

And as quick as the 320i and 330i climb in price just adding sport and normal features I think their value has dropped significantly.

I think the most popular model the 328/330 has always been the poorest value. Price climbs quickly and you are still driving around a 4 banger. For a short time, the 320i ZSP was a little known value, but now that is gone and you might as well skip up to a 340i. Perhaps they are preparring customers for the premium any sport G20 models will try to squeeze.

Anyway, this seemed to be the MO at the beginning of the F30, then a change in the middle, now something of a change back.

The only thing that really concerns me, and I have mentioned in other threads, is that they are squeezing sport out of the basic models.
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      12-29-2017, 03:39 PM   #13
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Which is one reason why I purchased a 428 over a 3 series...more standard content (moonroof, lighting) plus I didn't want to just be another 3 series on the road at the time and love my lift gate.......
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      12-29-2017, 04:13 PM   #14
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Bmw giving owners more reasons to go elsewhere, seems the new trend.
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      01-01-2018, 09:15 PM   #15
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Yes it is. This used to be a very helpful tool, now it is just a joke. Marketing seems to be out to lunch or having some sort of identity crisis.
that's their fault for releasing the new configurator design at the same time as the f30 lci release, so they had to update all of the f30/f32 packages and images at the same time as the full layout.

that's also why most of us are the most annoyed out of any of the bimmerpost forums i'd say. we had to wait for twice as many bugs to be worked out before we could see what we wanted.

as far as the 320i thing, it is likely happening for the same reason that the M340i is becoming a thing. manufacturers want to streamline their production and reduce options from consumers so that they can reduce manufacturing costs and complexity. i doubt very many people buy 320is with the sports package and all the track bits. it's the most economy version of their car, so they aren't going to make as much money by offering those options. on the other hand, a lot of 340i customers do get all those bits, so they are just going to give it to everyone. that's one less thing the people on the line have to pick and choose as vehicles roll down the production floor.
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      01-01-2018, 11:19 PM   #16
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      01-02-2018, 02:20 AM   #17
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Which is one reason why I purchased a 428 over a 3 series...more standard content (moonroof, lighting) plus I didn't want to just be another 3 series on the road at the time and love my lift gate.......
A good move. If I could do it over again... or maybe a 5 series or something.
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      01-02-2018, 02:26 AM   #18
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Yes and no.

There was a point where the 320i was 5 to 6k less than a comparable 328i depending on features selected in sport trim. So with almost the same engine and same interior trim, it was much better value. I looked very closely at this 2 model years ago.

For example, 320i had ZSP sport package for 1,300 and 328 only had M-sport for significantly more. 320i had $700 LED option and 328i had only full lighting package for nearly double I think, etc So depending on the spec, you were paying a premium for the 328, then paying more for same or similar options, so the value started bad and just kept getting worse as you went along. Even now, the $5,350 premium for the 330 over the 320 seems like a joke for an engine tune and the privilege to open up the choice to spend even more on additional options. What does the base 330i really have extra over the 320i, and is it worth $5,350?

But if you are after a not so sporty luxury sedan with some pretty decent gadgets, I see why the 328/330 sells, as you can't even option lots of lux and tech stuff on the 320, but none of that is/was really important to me when all the functional sport stuff was available at a reasonable price.

I am speaking new purchase only, as I do not know know the residuals for lease, and the 328/330 is better value for buying in the used market as the supply is better.

Now you are right, as this tier stuff has changed things again.
This line of thinking only really works if you are special ordering a car and literally paying for each option but when you are leasing, and something like 65% of drivers of new BMW lease their cars, or if you are getting something off the lot, especially an end of year model grab, the car just goes for whatever it goes for and it can be have incentive and discounts for DAYS so it doesn't really matter. Like my case for example. My lease on my 320i with sport package and moonroof and nothing else was $360 a month. My lease on a 328i with M sport pkg, navigation, anthracite wood trim, moonroof, premium package w/full LED headlights, driver assist package and significantly more HP out of the box is....$367 a month. So I just see no allure to the 320 since there are just endless 328s or 330s on dealer lots they are itching to unload for a song.

If you see your car as an appliance with an associated monthly expense/payment, like a cell phone, and you're going to save what, $50 a month at best by getting a stripper 320i with less options than an airport Kia Forte rental, vs. a 330i with pretty much more everything... what is the incentive to go with the 320?
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      01-02-2018, 08:38 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
This line of thinking only really works if you are special ordering a car and literally paying for each option but when you are leasing, and something like 65% of drivers of new BMW lease their cars, or if you are getting something off the lot, especially an end of year model grab, the car just goes for whatever it goes for and it can be have incentive and discounts for DAYS so it doesn't really matter. Like my case for example. My lease on my 320i with sport package and moonroof and nothing else was $360 a month. My lease on a 328i with M sport pkg, navigation, anthracite wood trim, moonroof, premium package w/full LED headlights, driver assist package and significantly more HP out of the box is....$367 a month. So I just see no allure to the 320 since there are just endless 328s or 330s on dealer lots they are itching to unload for a song.

If you see your car as an appliance with an associated monthly expense/payment, like a cell phone, and you're going to save what, $50 a month at best by getting a stripper 320i with less options than an airport Kia Forte rental, vs. a 330i with pretty much more everything... what is the incentive to go with the 320?
Yes, understood. I mentioned that in my post. Also why I recommend the 328 over the 320 when buying used.

320s on the lot seem always very poorly specd. And a not so good deal on a poorly specd 320 isn't fair to compare to a good deal on a better specd 328.

My only point was you could spec a 320 quite well for an attractive bottom line before, and now BMW has taken that away and killed something of a secret spec to push savvy buyers farther up the line.

When I was buying I wanted LCI, so a used 328i LCI m-sport wasn't available yet on the used market.

I always order or find the exact spec. I never buy a car that just happens to be on the lot - too many compromises for me. If I am going to make the spend and go new, I am going to get exactly the car I want - no compromises. This would be my approach buy or lease.

Of all the new cars I have purchased, all were ordered to my spec after researching / test driving each model and each package and option on the order guide. Except 2 - both of these were found in my region in exactly the spec I was looking for and were year end to take advantage of the incentives a special order would have missed out on.

I will also wait for months/years to find the right car when buying used and go anywhere to get it. I looked for my M3 for over 2 years and drove 3 states to get it. It is as close to exactly what I would have ordered as possible.

I understand many buyers don't see going to these lengths as worth it to them, but I like to feel satisfied with the appliance I drive every day, and the process of researching and buying isn't stressful for me like it is for many, so I am happy to do it to ensure the highest possibility of years of enjoyment with my car.

I think often times people switch cars more frequently as they grow unhappy with their car. Perhaps they would feel satisfied longer if they got a more suitable spec with each purchase.
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      01-02-2018, 09:37 PM   #20
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Yes, understood. I mentioned that in my post. Also why I recommend the 328 over the 320 when buying used.

320s on the lot seem always very poorly specd. And a not so good deal on a poorly specd 320 isn't fair to compare to a good deal on a better specd 328.

My only point was you could spec a 320 quite well for an attractive bottom line before, and now BMW has taken that away and killed something of a secret spec to push savvy buyers farther up the line.

When I was buying I wanted LCI, so a used 328i LCI m-sport wasn't available yet on the used market.

I always order or find the exact spec. I never buy a car that just happens to be on the lot - too many compromises for me. If I am going to make the spend and go new, I am going to get exactly the car I want - no compromises. This would be my approach buy or lease.

Of all the new cars I have purchased, all were ordered to my spec after researching / test driving each model and each package and option on the order guide. Except 2 - both of these were found in my region in exactly the spec I was looking for and were year end to take advantage of the incentives a special order would have missed out on.

I will also wait for months/years to find the right car when buying used and go anywhere to get it. I looked for my M3 for over 2 years and drove 3 states to get it. It is as close to exactly what I would have ordered as possible.

I understand many buyers don't see going to these lengths as worth it to them, but I like to feel satisfied with the appliance I drive every day, and the process of researching and buying isn't stressful for me like it is for many, so I am happy to do it to ensure the highest possibility of years of enjoyment with my car.

I think often times people switch cars more frequently as they grow unhappy with their car. Perhaps they would feel satisfied longer if they got a more suitable spec with each purchase.
I see. I would probably be fine to stay in this car for quite a while but I think the price I can buy it for @ lease end will be way too high to consider it. True market used value on a 2016 328 spec'd like mine in the fall of 2019 will likely be about $22000. That'd be a swell price. But the residual value is... $31500. Hahahaha! Epic. This is the thing. Can't have the cake and eat it too and all of that. I pay $367 a month on a $49000 car because the ridiculously imaginary residual value they set on this thing. They're like "shit, we have a TON of 328's we need to move, make the RV 68%!" So you get a sweet deal on the front end lease and no hope of ever buying the car if you wanted to. They kind of shoot themselves in the foot w/that though because I am a buyer in place, ready to buy. For some reason, they would rather take my car back, 'certify it' which is basically a glorified 30 minute inspection, cuz guess what there is nothing wrong with a 3 year old car with 30k miles on it and then let it sit on some dealer lot for x amount of months while they try to sell it. Or they could sell it to me but they'd never actually sell it to me for what its going to be worth. Bizarre sales model.

So am I instead going to buy a CPO 328 somewhere for $22k? No, why on earth would I do that, when I could just lease a G20 or whatever else. This is the trap my friend, this is the trap. Or I could have bought this car and had like a $850 car payment for 4 years.. Yeah, sweet, sounds great, sign me up!Then after its finally paid off I'm paying through the nose for my aging 3 series maintenance and repair.

I can see your approach making sense for a buy but the whole point of a lease in my view is its a cheap way, in the short term, to drive a nice car and comes with some other inherent benefits, already discussed in length in other threads. The way you get really cheap leases is by getting cars off lots. Special order you'll never get the same deal. End of the day, IMHO, a preciously spec'd 3 series with the options being 'just so' is hardly different than myriad cars on dealer lots, not to where it warrants paying more money. Like, sure I could have my same car with top view camera or ACC or fine ostrich seating surfaces but end of the day, theyre all the same damn car.

To buy and hold for many years though, I would absolutely special order.
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      01-03-2018, 07:46 AM   #21
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I see. I would probably be fine to stay in this car for quite a while but I think the price I can buy it for @ lease end will be way too high to consider it. True market used value on a 2016 328 spec'd like mine in the fall of 2019 will likely be about $22000. That'd be a swell price. But the residual value is... $31500. Hahahaha! Epic. This is the thing. Can't have the cake and eat it too and all of that. I pay $367 a month on a $49000 car because the ridiculously imaginary residual value they set on this thing. They're like "shit, we have a TON of 328's we need to move, make the RV 68%!" So you get a sweet deal on the front end lease and no hope of ever buying the car if you wanted to. They kind of shoot themselves in the foot w/that though because I am a buyer in place, ready to buy. For some reason, they would rather take my car back, 'certify it' which is basically a glorified 30 minute inspection, cuz guess what there is nothing wrong with a 3 year old car with 30k miles on it and then let it sit on some dealer lot for x amount of months while they try to sell it. Or they could sell it to me but they'd never actually sell it to me for what its going to be worth. Bizarre sales model.

So am I instead going to buy a CPO 328 somewhere for $22k? No, why on earth would I do that, when I could just lease a G20 or whatever else. This is the trap my friend, this is the trap. Or I could have bought this car and had like a $850 car payment for 4 years.. Yeah, sweet, sounds great, sign me up!Then after its finally paid off I'm paying through the nose for my aging 3 series maintenance and repair.

I can see your approach making sense for a buy but the whole point of a lease in my view is its a cheap way, in the short term, to drive a nice car and comes with some other inherent benefits, already discussed in length in other threads. The way you get really cheap leases is by getting cars off lots. Special order you'll never get the same deal. End of the day, IMHO, a preciously spec'd 3 series with the options being 'just so' is hardly different than myriad cars on dealer lots, not to where it warrants paying more money. Like, sure I could have my same car with top view camera or ACC or fine ostrich seating surfaces but end of the day, theyre all the same damn car.

To buy and hold for many years though, I would absolutely special order.
It's a different animal trying to buy or lease a RWD model out of dealer inventory anywhere near the midwest. I had to do my test drives while traveling to southern California for work, as you can't find crap for sport specd RWD models. Forget about finding something to negotiate a decent deal on. If I wanted an xdrive 328 with tons of tech, I could use your method, but it really is a different market than in you area. I was super excited to browse dealer inventory in California. Here each dealer is a depressing lot full of the same executive company car crap unless you are looking for an M car, and even then your selection is very limited.

I could count on 1 hand the number of cars that were even anywhere near a car that would suit me, and that's considering all inventory within several hours of a major metropolitan area. For a decent deal on a properly specd BMW you are in the heart of the worlds buyers market. Keep in mind that is probably not the reality for nearly all other regions throughout the world.
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2009 135i M sport - sold
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2016 F30 320i ZSP

Last edited by metallicpea; 01-03-2018 at 08:52 AM.
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      01-03-2018, 11:24 AM   #22
openwheelracing
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Drives: F30 320i AW ZSP
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Kaf got a terrible deal on a 320i ZSP and he regretted not getting ZLP. It was his first BMW and he was only shopping the lot.

I have a 320i ZSP and ZLP for less than 300/month.
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