BMW 3 Series Used Buyer’s Guide

2012 BMW 328i
The compact entry-level 3 Series reigns as ​BMW’s #1 volume-leading bestseller and is the most popular model in the marque’s lineup. It was introduced in 1975 as the successor to the New Class 02 Series and has remained in regular production ever since. With a base price that competes with many other contemporary midsize family sedans such as the Toyota CamryHonda Accord, and Ford Fusion, the 3 Series is arguably the most mainstream of all of BMW’s present-day crop. It’s far more than just a basic commuter car, though. The 3 Series, like its larger sibling, the elite ​7 Series high-end luxury saloon, epitomizes the BMW trademark amalgamation of style, luxury, and performance but unlike that premier flagship vehicle, the 3 Series is attainable and has attracted a broad array of new customers ranging from suburban families to urban millennials. What was once previously exclusive to only the more ​affluent of citizens is now one of the most commonly-seen vehicles on American roads today.

However, the widespread popularity of the BMW 3 Series also saddles it with one of the worst depreciation percentages on the market today: a painful 46.9%. That might not mean anything to someone who leases from a dealership every 3 years, but it really sucks for those who bought brand new from the showroom. But as the old saying goes: “One’s loss is another’s gain.” High depreciation for the 1st owner can be a bargain buy for the 2nd or 3rd in line.

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The Ultimate Driving Machines: Top 5 BMW Cars From Past & Present

This magic badge lets the world know that you drive like a horse's ass.
One of the world’s top premier automotive marques is Germany’s Bayerische Motoren Werke or, for those ausländer die kein Deutsch sprechenBMW. Whether it’s in terms of innovationstyleluxury, or performance, many automotive journalists and enthusiasts alike consider the BMW brand among the finest automobiles in production today. Even for people who aren’t necessarily into cars or don’t know the slightest thing about them, they tend to associate BMW with poise, refinement, and elegance. It’s a corporate brand identity with over a full century of history and legacy behind it, as well as one of the most imitated.

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Recall Alert: Mini recalls 35,000 cars

2015_mini_cooper_s_72_1024x768

Mini is recalling about 35,000 cars in the U.S. and Canada do to safety regulations not met for side impacts for rear passengers. The recall includes Cooper, Cooper S Hardtop two-door cars from 2014 and 2015. It also includes the 2015 John Cooper works Hardtop Two-door. Basically rear passengers are at a higher risk of injury from side impacts, when you bring your car in to the dealer they will install more energy absorption material between the rear interior side panels and body starting September 12th.

The documents were filed with the U.S. safety regulations that is knows of no accidents or injuries from this problem. The recall will include 30,456 U.S. cars and 4,130 Canadian cars.

This is not one of the biggest recalls in car maker history but this could potentially be dangerous. If you own one of these cars please contact your local dealer to get your car scheduled for repair. The last thing we want to see is anyone get hurt do to lack in safety.

BMW Maintenance plan a no go for 2nd owners

BMW-Cars

One of the best things a consumer of a new car can buy is the maintenance package programs that dealers offer to their customers. This alleviates the stress of having to pay for oil changes and whatever else the specific maintenance package covers. For obvious reasons it is not free for dealers to implement this program and with rising costs BMW is taking action.

The original person buying or leasing isn’t going to see any difference, but the program is no longer transferable to a second owner, unless that person is in the household. The people in question would include parents, siblings, grandparents, and grandchildren. All you would have to do is contact BMW to make them aware of the new user. There will be a new program offered to 2nd owners and it will cover the vehicle up to 100,000 miles.

The Press Release is as follows:

The BMW Maintenance Program

For model year 2015 or later vehicles sold or leased by an authorized BMW center on or after July 1, 2014, BMW Maintenance Program coverage is provided for the exclusive benefit of the initial purchaser, owner, or lessee of a new vehicle, sales demonstrator vehicle, Aftersales Mobility Program (AMP) vehicle, or BMW Group company vehicle from an authorized BMW center in the United States (including Puerto Rico). Accordingly, BMW Maintenance Program coverage, with one exception, is not transferable to subsequent purchasers, owners, or lessees. The sole exception to the non-transferability of BMW Maintenance Program coverage is that household transfers – transfers within the United States (including Puerto Rico) to members of the household of the initial purchaser, owner, or lessee of a BMW vehicle from an authorized BMW center – will not terminate BMW Maintenance Program coverage. Household transfers are limited solely to transfers to a current or former spouse or spousal equivalent, child, sibling, parent, grandparent, or grandchild from the initial purchaser, owner, or lessee of a vehicle. In the event of a household transfer, purchasers, owners, or lessees of a BMW vehicle should promptly advise their authorized BMW center to document and confirm the household transfer for purposes of BMW Maintenance Program coverage. The payoff of a loan on a vehicle by the initial purchaser and the purchase of a leased vehicle by the initial lessee are not considered transfers for purposes of BMW Maintenance Program coverage.

The BMW Maintenance Program covers all factory recommended maintenance as determined by the Condition Based Service (CBS) system. Additional specific items that need replacement due to normal wear and tear, and that are not covered by the original New Vehicle Limited Warranty – such as brake pads, brake rotors, and wiper blade inserts – are included, provided wear and tear exceeds BMW wear limits. Any applicable adjustments required due to normal operating conditions are also included.

Exclusions from coverage include the following:

Items reimbursable under your New Vehicle Limited Warranty

Gasoline and diesel fuel

Gasoline and diesel fuel additive

Diesel glow plugs

Diesel particulate filter

Windshield washer additive (except when in conjunction with scheduled maintenance)

Tires, wheel alignment, tire balance and rotation

Parking brake shoes/linings

Reset Tire Pressure Monitor

Wear and tear of soft trim items, such as: seats, carpets, moldings, headliner, door panels and all chrome trim

Damage, including consequential, which results from negligence, improper operation of the vehicle, wear and tear or deterioration due to driving habits or conditions, improper repair, environmental influences, flood, accident or fire damage, road salt corrosion, alteration, installation of non-genuine BMW accessories, or use of improper, poor quality or contaminated fuel

Altered or unreadable Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) or odometer irregularities or vehicles where the true mileage cannot be determined

Maintenance or repair after the vehicle is deemed a total loss

Maintenance or repairs performed by other than an authorized BMW center within the United States or Puerto Rico

‘Topping off’ low fluids (e.g., engine oil, antifreeze, washer fluid, etc.) except when done in conjunction with a scheduled maintenance or other required maintenance work (as outlined in the customized maintenance checklist printout) that is performed during an applicable Maintenance Program period
Vehicles used in competitive events

Oil changes performed outside the recommended maintenance intervals as indicated by the Condition Based Service

Any other vehicle-specific exclusions described in the Service and Warranty Booklet included with the vehicle

The official BMW Recycling plant

A quick walk through of how BMW tries to make their vehicles easier to recycle. This is their official recycling plant in Germany. It looks like their mostly concentrated on the absolute final destination of the vehicle and not re using the parts. I really enjoy watching them use a giant claw to rip out the engine of what looks to be a new BMW. Crushing up cars never seems to get old for me, especially when it’s a $50k+ European car.