I purchased a 2008 BMW M3 Convertible with the DCT transmission two weeks ago. It has all options except extended leather and parking sensors.
This car is amazing. It's ridiculously powerful and fast. If you feel like being an F1 Driver, you can shift with the paddles, if you're feeling lazy (or commuting), you can just put it in "D" mode, and let the DCT do the work for you. With the convertible hardtop, the car is quiet and rattle-free. The stereo is excellent, and the seats are very adjustable, supportive and comfortable.
-Engine sound and power
-You don't see one on every corner
-Gas mileage should be much better. Corvettes and Mustangs with similar power and weight get far better mileage.
-Too easy to hit the windshield washers when trying to use the right shift paddle
-NAV system is OK, but doesn't work as well as a portable unit.
- iDrive takes a while to learn.
-Ride quality with the 19" wheels is a little harsh on rough roads.
I always considered a convertible M3 as my dream car and in 2008 I went out and bought one- brand new. It was gorgeous and "impressive" but totally and absolutely not worth the sticker price. It had so many stupid quirks that I rarely drove it, preferring my Volvo station wagon (!). I will never again buy a BMW and I pity the poor guy who got mine when I dumped it after 2 years and only 15,000 miles. I'm glad I got the BMW bug out of my system, but it cost a lot to be cured!
Styling, inside and out.
Face it, it is a sexy car.
The leather feels like a designer purse and the outside is just beautiful- top up or down.
I DID like the hardtop convertible and the motors never failed.
The trunk space with the top up was surprisingly large and even pretty decent with the top down.
I liked all the ways you could customize your settings (once you got your BMW PhD and figured them out).
Frankly, I just liked looking at it.
Where do I begin...?
The radio stank, my Volvo's was so much better.
The GPS was abomidably bad, even with the "upgrades".
The dashboard computer didn't usually agree with the GPS screen's computer regarding oil level, which led to multiple trips to the dealership and wasted time.
The pairing with a phone (bluetooth) or an iPod (aux) were awful and often locked up my Blackberry and my iPod.
My computer would randomly lock up as well, which the dealer blamed on my infrequent use of the car.
I bought an expensive battery-charge-keeper unit and there was NO improvement.
They should have spent more time in R&D on their computer systems in a car that costs this much or not offered it.
I have always wanted a M3 and with the introduction of the new M in 08' I couldn't have picked a better time to get one. I decided to go with the hard top convertible to get the best of both worlds. True coupe like design and then who could argue the experience of open roof driving. I have invested in an amazing performance exhaust because I was a little disappointed with the stock sound... no way did it sound like a V- 8, but it sure does now!! I also put H&R Sport lowering springs on it to give the car an even more aggressive stance at stand still and it corners even better now... if you can improve on the amazing handling it came with.
Hard top, HD radio, and aggressive styling vs non M BMW 3 series cars.
While I am somewhat used to the iDrive I wish I had waited until the 09' model came out as it has the newer system included.
In terms of driving enjoyment this is the best car I have had. Wanted to point out the how nice it is to be able to switch from automatic mode when you feel like just cruising, to using the hand pedals when you feel like driving hard. Regardless of your mood you get best possible experience. In both situations the car handles great, and is fun. Having a cab that adds an additional dimension. So the new M3 Cab is the best possible combination of fun, diversity and quality of driving I have ever seen.
Drove a 2009 Porsche 911 with A/M before I drove the M3 6spd. The 911 didn't impress me. The M3 blew me away. Got it will all the options and brushed aluminum. It is very comfortable. Takes a little time to get used to shifting the manual. You can tell a major difference from M mode and regular mode. Fuel economy is almost the same in both so I usually just leave it in M. In M it is a rocket, in regular my 4-runner accelerates faster. Icontrol is easy to use and they seem to have thought of everything and put it in the right place.
Stare factor. Several people have nearly wrecked their cars trying to stare at mine. M-Mode, engine note in M mode. IControl, cool remote controlled convertible top, voice commands, handsfree phone, sat/HD radio, nav, heated seats in cool weather top down driving, thumb drive MP3 ports.
Vent leather seats w/AC. They don't get too hot but no air can circulate there (steamy). More HP, fstr 0-60 for convrtble & better MPG (turbo charge it). Better placement 4front license plate. I don't want to drill holes in the front bumper. Free rock chip insurance & buffing w/free maintenance (?)