2001 BMW 325i
Acquired: September 2000, European Delivery
Engine: 2.5L, 6cyl, 190hp Weight: 3300lb 0-60: 6.9sec Top Speed: 137mph
Track days: 1
10/18/00 Picked up the 325i in Munich. The delivery process itself was unremarkable - a taxi ride to the delivery center, about 30 minutes waiting for the paperwork, then a 5-minute intro to the car. I selected the Amsterdam drop-off location, and a vague route including France, Luxembourg and Belgium. Driving in European cities is a royal pain, with narrow streets (often one-way) which go in random directions. Parking spaces are tiny and hard to come by. The highways, however, are another story altogether... Clean, neat and fast (100+ mph cruising is common, even in countries with limits).
For the first 1200 miles the RPM is supposed to stay under 4000... which is torturous. Temptation stretched to the horizon, and I dealt with it in the best possible way - by yielding to it.
At the end, with 760 miles on the clock, the Bimmer was dropped off in Amsterdam for shipment to Portland. Now comes the wait, 4-6 weeks...
12/11/00 The Bimmer is finally here. It arrived unscathed, a bit over 6 weeks from dropping it off in Amsterdam. Overall, the Euro delivery process is a bit short on instant gratification, but the experience has been worth it. Don't know if I'll do it again any time soon though...
Seems the color of the car goes well with the house (and the Portland sky ;)..
This is my idea of a happy garage!
3/30/01 BMW club day at PIR. I decided to run the 325, stock all-season tires and all. OK, it's not a race car. But after a hint from a fellow 3-series owner I managed to turn off traction control all the way and the experience became fairly enjoyable. Disabling traction control was good for 2-3 seconds, resulting in a 1:44 lap with the chicane (contrast that with 1:31 for the Lotus a week ago). Still, for a stock 4-door sedan it's not bad. An interesting comparison of the two cars just getting on the brakes for the chicane at 400-foot marker: Lotus 4th gear 7500rpm (128mph), BMW 4th gear 5500rpm (107mph). Note also the difference in vantage point :)
A few spins kept the proceedings entertaining, as can be seen in a short 1.1MB video clip below (the camera mount is not quite as good in the Bimmer as it is in the Lotus. oh well)...
10/31/01 Due to the M Coupe's return from California I now needed to make room in the garage. I suppose in a way the lack of entries for the 325 over the last seven months speaks for itself. It had to go. So with only 3500 miles on the odometer the 325 drove off today with its new owner, still looking and even smelling showroom-new. I'm sure he will enjoy it.