Friday, November 6, 2015

BMW 328i 12000 Mile Review

BMW 328i - 12,000 Miles of Very Nice

Elle is 14 months old and has clocked in a bit over 12,000 miles. No, fuss, no muss, all very nice. In fact, a bit too nice. Texas roads tend to be wide, flat, fast with long, slow-sweeping curves. Mustangs, Chargers, Challengers, Corvettes, Camaros... they are all over the place. Texas roads are just fine for American muscle cars. Elle finds these roads boring. 

Old Posts: 

The Good 

Trading down from the inline 6 to the 2.0l proved to be a very reasonable trade. The new engine spins a lot more, but with the transmission in Sport mode it moves along just fine. With the addition of Auto Stop/Start the gas mileage is 5 MPG better than my older 328ix. I give the improvement almost entirely to AS/S. I've never been able to accumulate significant savings under ECO-Mode. Where my normal commute is about 20 minutes, it can stretch to 30 depending on stop lights. AS/S means I'm not burning fuel during most of that 10-minute pause. 

The Bad 

  • Eco-Pro Mode seems to be ineffective. With the exception of releasing the transmission to allow "coasting" this feature seems weak. 
  • AS/S yes, it provides fuel efficiency, but rough restarts and engine turn-offs while waiting for let turns are still annoying. Parking in the garage has proved exciting on several occasions when the engine restarted... BMW provides more than a few ways to defeat this feature, but some logic tied to engaging hand-brake when at a full stop wold be nice. 
  • The phone book and contacts feature forced me to reconsider and change my telephone usage. The trade-off of Stereo pre-sets for telephone numbers is merely OK.  See the links above for longer discussion.

The Ugly 

  • There is not enough open road in the entire state of Texas. And, I don't have enough money to pay for any exercise of speed that would equate to "fun". 
  • I didn't get the xDrive. I totally blew it. Unlike Alex, Elle is willing to slide around under hard acceleration, especially in right turns - going uphill. In Texas we might go weeks between rain. Then we get inches of rain and the street becomes very slick. xDrive is the answer - probably my biggest disappointment.   
  • The engine Double-Tap to turn off - hate it. 

Bottom Line

Eagerly waiting for June 2017 to take European delivery of an M2 with xDrive. I want smaller, faster and more fun... will all four wheels on the ground.   

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