2002 BMW M3 Consumer Review: It's great new, but what about

2002 BMW M3 - Consumer Review

Average Consumer Rating

102 Total Reviews

Base Coupe (3.2L 6-cyl. 6-speed Manual)

Build Quality
Reliability Value
It's great new, but what about after 50k?
By used M3 on


2002 BMW M3 2dr Coupe (3.2L 6cyl 6M)


Got mine used w/ 49k mi on it. Would not buy brand new - not worth 55k+ (w/options). The car is very well-balanced in terms of power, handling, comfort, and luxury (mine is loaded - heated seats, nav, park sensors, etc.). Don't worry about all this rod bearing talk - it's a RECALL! (ie. get it done for free) and you wont have to worry because it will have new warranty (motor ONLY). The disappointment is the trans/differential. Gearbox is inconsistent - sometimes it's fine but othertimes it grinds from 1-2 at slow speeds. The diff is noticably clunky w/excessive lash-feels like it will fail. Maybe the newer car owners don't feel it but after the car hits 50k be aware. The warranty ends.

Best Features

Cornering ability - very stable through the turns will on the throttle. Looks - very classy and sporty. Torque - very good on highway for passing. Gearshift has very light throw (when its not grinding). I've always admired this car before I got one. But after a year, I thought the build quality should be better.

Worst Features

Interior headliner trim falls off (on $50k car!?). The drive-by wire throttle has lag on tip-in making slow driving jerky if you're not perfect. The gearbox can 'crunch or grind' and differential feels too loose and clunky. Nav is a pain to use - hope for a touch screen.
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