This is the first car I have ever owned, although I have driven many others. In my opinion, this is as close to a perfect car as there is (which is why I bought it. A logical progression, really). I got an excellent example of the model for 4 grand, and have since put less than a thousand into it over 8,000 miles. It is just bulletproof. I have never pushed the revs to the red because the car simply doesn't need it to do whatever you need. The interior is comfortable but you can tell it was a secondary concern after performance. The car has it where it counts, and that is what matters to me.
Well, I purchased this 1997 328i in 1999 as a dealer leftover that had been sitting on the lot for a very long time. I got a heck of a deal on it. I have driven it on and off for the past 11 years and when I'm not using the car, it's garaged. The black paint shines like the day I got it. The interior shows almost no signs of wear aside from the drivers floor mat. No cracking of the leather, etc. I have had NO MECHANICAL PROBLEMS whatsoever with the car in the 70,000 miles I've owned it. Aside from regular scheduled maintenance, I've replaced the brake pads and tires once and that's it. This car has proven to be the most reliable vehicle I've ever owned. I will never sell this car.
I have already run over 1,500 miles on this car and it has been everything I wxpected it to be. Used to have a 1991 318i and liked everything about that. This is that and more. The car pulls hard off the line and can still turn it on in 5th gear. I don't like that I have to hunt a factory CD player down (fits using a Z3 factory unit)and the cost of the CD is very high. With that said, nothing else to complain about. Smooth, fun and full of style. A must have for the driving fan.
I love my 328i, but it costs, financially and physically, to maintain it! So far I have had to replace the radiator, radiator fluid tank, fuel pump, drive and ac belts, wiper motor, and thermostat (and I am only the second owner!). My dad, who loves to and can fix anything, HATES working on my car, but he does it reluctantly. It's too low to the ground to fit a normal jack under it, you need odd-sized tools, and the lay out under the hood is way to complicated. But I guess thats the price you pay for a lasting vehicle.
This is an excellent overall car. The cargo capacity is excellent, while the car is well balanced and handles like a dream. Mine is equipped with the sport package, which is a must have, as well as a 5-speed manual transmission. While repairs can be costly, most are relativly simple and can be done in your own garage at a huge savings. For example, I did my own plugs for 30 bucks, and it took abut an hour.