I bought my 1998 328i in January 1999. It had 14,000 miles on the odometer. It currently has 64,000. It has never broken down or stranded me. It is a 5 speed stick with premium package (no sport which means I can rotate the tires). The car is awsome and I am a car nut. The acceleration and handling are the tops. The HK sound system is excellent. My ave. fuel economy is 25 miles to the gallon. Yes you become one with the car, it's a BMW. I have only performed the routine scheduled maintenance since owning(the countdown lights). Nothing has broken so far. I did just replace the battery 2 weeks ago (original, it's in the trunk!). I hope to keep this car till either it or I expire!
The performance, handling and good looks. Gas mileage, solidity of construction. HK sound, great brakes (good to have on performance vehicle), one touch up and down windows, throaty acceleration sound, 4 doors (3 kids),split fold down rear seat(comes in handy). BMW cruise control (real simple)
It's a 1998!. The improvements if there are really any are on the newer ones. let's see I have 4 wheel ABS, traction control, front and side airbags, HK sound a sunroof, remote keyless entry with alarm great acceleration and brakes, 4 doors with one touch windows and nothing has broken! I'm Good!!
After years of BMW hating, my girlfriend finally convinced me to take one for a test drive. I drove an E46 325i (which I loved but did not find the price very inviting) and then my now E36 328i. Never have I experienced a car that is so connected to the driver and is able to "read" what I am doing next. For roughly $13k for a nice, low mileage example, there is simply no better car to buy than an e36 BMW. What a car! Much like an old Z, this is a car that I am kicking myself over for not discovering earlier. I bought mine from the dealership for an excellent price (With a 100k mile warranty included!) as a one owner, full history car. For those of you without one, you are truly missing out!
This car handles and is extremely fun to drive. Despite what one reads, maintenance is not too costly and if done as required, the car will run forever. Close the door on one and you will "feel" what BMW is made of. Solid, solid, solid! Gas mileage is excellent and the car is HANDSOME.
The cupholders are awful. The disc changer does not have a fast forward feature.
A lot of fun to drive but maintenance costs are very high. When my transmission went out I learned that BMW claims the earlier 328's have a "lifetime transmission" with a "lifetime fill" of fluid and do not recommend a tranny service. I followed the recommended maintenance to a T and never had the tranny serviced. Replacing it cost me over $4k. Had I had it serviced it would not have failed when it did. BMW now recommends a tranny service on newer models but still not on the older ones. Even the fluid mfg's recommend changing the fluid. Where BMW came up with the "lifetime" claim is beyond me. I ended up getting the money I spent on the new tranny back through small claims court.
The get up and go especially from around 40 or 50 mph to higher speeds; a fun car to drive
Maintenance costs are ridiculously high; BMW has limited maintenance guidelines and following them may lead to premature failures of various components, especially the tranny - I have talked with several people with the same problem; BMW customer service is about as arrogant as they come.
I bought my BM used in 2002, and this
car is AMAZING. There are few quirks
that seem to happen with all BMWs but
they are not life threatening, or
highly irritating. I would definitely
recommend this car to anyone.
Dealership fees are a bit exorbitant,
but look around where you live, you
will find some that specialize in BMWs
and other german cars. The internet
also has a great repository of
information on how to fix/repair, and
troubleshoot. Most of them can be done