I think I'm ready for a change and hopefully a step up, but I look at the
performance numbers in magazines like Road & Track, Motor Trend, and Car And
Driver, and it's hard not to like the 2000 Mustang GT based on the objective
numbers - 0-60 in 5.4 seconds, 1/4 mile in 14.0, and 66.8 mph in Motor
Trend's slalom (for comparison, in the same MT slalom test, the 2000 M5
65.6 mph). http://www.motortrend.com/
I'm not foolish enough to suggest that a Mustang GT is a better car than a
BMW. I also realize that Motor Trend's tests are all done on smooth
surfaces, and that the Mustang's rear suspension is not all that
sophisticated when the road gets a little bumpy. But I do know that there
is a certain visceral thrill that comes with a Mustang when you stomp the
throttle at low rpms, and the 300 lb/ft of torque pastes you back in the
seat. There's also a lot of satisfaction when you shift hard into second
and third, and are able to break the rear tires loose with each gear change.
The reason I'm posting to this newsgroup is I want to get some replies
giving reasons why I would be happier with a BMW 328 or M3 over a Mustang
GT. I use my car as a daily driver - no street racing or anything like
that, though I do occasionally drive it hard when the situation is safe and
the opportunity is right. Please, no flames or insults! I mean no
disrespect to BMW owners, but merely wonder why a BMW costs so much more
than a Mustang GT, and what you get for that extra money.
<remove 7of9 for e-mail replies>
I was fairly apprehensive about getting the 323Ci due to the lack of power
and interior room compared to what I had been driving. All I can tell you,
even though I have only had the car 4 days, is that the car is worth every
damn penny that I paid. I haven't really been able to test the acceleration
due to the break in restrictions, but the car is fairly quick even with the
steptronic transmission. But you will find out that even though a lot of
power is nice, a better overall driving experience is what really matters
(at least to me), and this car has it in spades. For what you state are your
intended uses for the car, the power should be more than adequate.
The extra money you pay gets you a car with classic, sophisticated styling
that will not look dated in three years. The interior materials are of much
better quality than the Mustang. The overall build quality is also many
steps above the vehicles that you mentioned.
I could go on an on trying to explain the driving experience, but you really
need to go to your local BMW dealer and arrange for an extended test drive.
I really do not miss the power and interior room difference because the
driving feel makes up for it. I think after a test drive you will probably
forget the Mustang and wonder why you even asked this question in the first
Bill Jones <bi...@7of9.snet.net> wrote in message
Performance numbers only tell 10% of the story. I have a V-6 Vega that will
generate better performance numbers than a Mustang. A big engine, big tires
and stiff springs can make even the cheapest car get good numbers.
Gary Derian <gde...@oh.verio.com>
You seem like a nice guy with an honest question. I'm treading on
thin ice here, and I don't mean to say this in a negative way.
Please forgive my inability to articulately express myself via this
When I was in high school, it seemed everyone wanted to drive a
muscle car. They were great. I drove a GTX, loved it. Now (thank
goodness) I'm out of school, I spend time in different ways; my
goals and needs are more refined. The BMW suits them better. A
muscle car would seem out of place at most functions that I attend.
So, I feel as comfortable in a BMW now, as I did in my muscle car
then or as I will in my DeVile in 20 years. :-)
Just my thoughts,
The Bimmer is more comfortable and even more fun to drive.
The handling is as good as any car I have ever driven...even
goes through the snow ok. It is much better balanced than
the Camaro. The fit and finish is superior, but then it
cost about $40K new, so you would expect it.
Go out and drive some Bimmers. I decided to buy a used,
off-lease, under warranty car to see if I would really be
happy after giving up the Camaro. There are good deals out
there on late model used. You can always sell it a year
later for about what you paid. I was going to order a new
one, but will probably just the '96 for awhile I like it so
I just purchased a 99 Mitsubishi 3000GT VR4 - It is the best of both worlds - in
my opinion, the handling surpasses the the M3 because of the AWD and AWS - there
is more interior noise though. The VR4 is much faster. The interior and exterior
is put together very well - like the M3. Best of all - the sales people at
Mitsubishi treated me like a king!
There's more to driving and performance than sheer numbers on a spec sheet.
For me, it's the feel of a BMW. It's a driver's car, plain and simple.
You're right in saying that the punch of a big V-8 is a powerful thing, but
once you're spent time in a BMW, you really won't wanna go back. The
steering feels alive, sharp as a razor. Each wheel feels firmly-planted and
you can tell exactly what it is doing. The transmission is smooth as silk.
And, when you pour on a little gas in a turn and the car responds back --
yes. Hit the brakes and it feels like you're landing a jet on on a carrier.
Perfect stops every time.
You don't have to be haulin'-butt to love the car, although you'll find
yourself pushing it through the twisties just to feel it respond. It's a
much more complete car and it will make you a better driver.
BMW quality seems to be a bit better inside and out. There are a million
little touches you notice after a while: the ergonomics are first-rate, the
headlights are better, there's a toolkit -- the onboard computer even
reminds you when it's getting cold enough for bridges to freeze. As a
driver, you are pampered; the visibility is excellent, the seats are firm,
yet comfortable. The clutch feels great, the brakes are solid. (The new
Camaros I've driven all have annoying optical distortions from the curved
glass both front and rear. Bugs the hell out of me.)
And, an interesting aside: I was reading an artice about a multi-car road
test in an auto magazine the other day. There were 6 pretty nice cars in
this road trip, including a BMW 3-series. At the end, the point was made
that the drivers all wanted more time in the BMW. These are people who
drive cars all the time and the one they wanted to spend more time with was
the bottom line BMW 3 series. And, the reason mentioned was that it was
just more fun to drive.
If you want a real thrill, attend a BMW driver's school where they teach you
how to drive your car. No matter how much you know, you'll never be the
I guess I am in the same state of indecision as Bill is.
I have a 91 300ZXTT with only 17K miles on it that I absolutely love driving
(good weather only) and has given me no problems at all. It's just that I
have had it since it was new and I want another great experience like that
(I'm 52). I am considering giving up the Z and getting a 2001 M3 when they
come out, but it is a hard decision. It is compounded by the fact that just
before winter set in, I purchased a 99 M Roadster and am looking forward to
summer to get to spend some time with that. It is a great drive, but
doesn't have the raw power of the 300Z. I only have room for 2 cars plus my
winter Jeep Wrangler. Are the two BMWs sufficiently different that having
both would be worthwhile? I would probably drive the M3 in
places/situations where I would not drive the Roadster (I think). But, then
again, every time I see someone out driveing an old classic in cherry
condition I think I should keep the 300Z and enjoy it as long as possible.
>>What would be the natural progression for me? A 323Ci, 328, or something
>>couple of years old?
The 323Ci has been getting really good reviews -- some people seem to prefer
it to the 328Ci because of the driving experience, but it may not have the
oomph that you desire. I've heard that a 330Ci will be available sometime
this summer. Not sure of a price, though.
Sounds like an M3 may be a good fit for you. The 2000 isn't available yet,
but you can get good deals on used BMWs. The people who buy them tend to
take good care of them -- here in NC, you can find plenty of good, late 90's
M3's for around 30K.
One other thing that I haven't seen mentioned within this discussion is the
availability of "performance chips" for BMW engine control computers.
Several manufacturers produce aftermarket chips to increase performance.
I've never had much experience with this, but a lot of drivers have done
this to get a little more zip out of their cars. Perhaps someone else from
this newsgroup can add more information.
Amen and right-on ! A true driving enthusiast does not care about the name
on the trunk - only the smile on his or her face. Far too many people
drive BMW's for the name and never drive the car harder than they would a
Camry. A waste of money and a damn shame if you ask me. For those rare few
that really *drive* their BMWs (and can afford to buy and maintain them),
more power to you. However, in almost every category that BMW's compete
in, there are better deals out there.
Me? I drove every model BMW had to offer at two different Komen foundation
"test drives" this summer - and loved every minute of it. But when it came
time to plunk down my hard-earned cash, the Chrysler 300m (with the PHP)
got the nod. And I still have my "muscle car" too, a 94 LT1 f-body
(Pontiac Firebird Formula 6-speed). I could care less about "curb appeal"
and impressing the neighbors.
> Amen and right-on ! A true driving enthusiast does not care about the name
> on the trunk - only the smile on his or her face. Far too many people
> drive BMW's for the name and never drive the car harder than they
BMW does have its share of poseur owners, but so does every other car brand.
Porsche is even making 911T in slushies for crying out loud. At least BMW
didn't do that to the M5.
> would a
> Camry. A waste of money and a damn shame if you ask me. For those
I have a friend who used to have a E36 325 in high school, the car has since
been given to his brother. He's waiting for the E46 M3 and driving a Camry
presently. He drove the Camry like he did the BMW, and gone thru the
following: control arms, bushing, melted front brake pads, timing belt, idle
control valve, brake master cylinder (bolied the fluid and almost melted the
brak lines). So as you see, Camry's are reliable only when driven gently (aka
poseurish when in a bimmer).
> rare few
> that really *drive* their BMWs (and can afford to buy and maintain them),
> more power to you. However, in almost every category that BMW's compete
> in, there are better deals out there.
Huh, like what? Who else offers RWD, IRS, 5 speed, and decent brakes for under
> time to plunk down my hard-earned cash, the Chrysler 300m (with the PHP)
WHAT!? You PAID 30K for a FWD SLUSHIE!!!! How is that a better deal than a 323
> got the nod. And I still have my "muscle car" too, a 94 LT1 f-body
> (Pontiac Firebird Formula 6-speed). I could care less about "curb appeal"
Muscle cars are not sports car, their handling leaves something to be desired.
Come on! We are talking Live Rear Axle here.
98 M3 black/black
Andy Chi <m3f...@yahoo.com> schreef in berichtnieuws
When I moved to the good ol' US of A, I just HAD to buy a detroit pony car, and
got a 95 Mustang GT convertible, you're right, there really is nothing quite
like it for out and out power. Now tho' I've moved to a 98 328iC, and my wife
and I would never trade back.
The main reasons are not performance related, but some are:
Mustang is the EASIEST car to drive damn fast in a straight line, drag races a
speciality.. point and shoot... and occasionally change gear
BMW is the most FUN to drive, the engine sounds great, the damn thing is built
like a tank, handles WAY better round those cloverleaves on the interstates.
You'll really notice the difference in breaking, the BMW doesnt dive, the
mustang stands on its nose.
Chasis rigidity on the BMW is leagues ahead.
In the convertible, you get way more attention in the BMW than the mustang :)
You'll have to really work the BMW to get anything like wheelspin in 2nd, but
the engine sounds great all the way up to 6000
The gearbox is MUCH tighter and easier to get to in a hurry, the big box on the
mustang has too long a throw for me.
The interior in the 2000 mustang is the same as my 95.. in 6 months small
rattles are going to appear
Any time there's a rattle in my BMW i KNOW something my wife put in the side
pockets got loose... :)
FYI: Ford tried to make hard tops for their Mustangs a la Merc and BMW, but
scrapped the idea because there was just too little regidity in the chassis to
keep the top in place... my BMW top hardly squeeks.. (When it does I complain to
BMW and they fix it :)
Just my 2c
Bill Jones wrote:
> For the last 20 years, all I've owned are Camaro Z28s and Mustang GTs. All
> with rwd, standard transmissions, and of course big pushrod V-8s. My
> current car is a 1995 Mustang GT.
> I think I'm ready for a change and hopefully a step up, ...[snip]
'99 M3 Black/Black
On Wed, 2 Feb 2000 00:55:35 -0500, "Bill Jones" <bi...@7of9.snet.net>
>For the last 20 years, all I've owned are Camaro Z28s and Mustang GTs. All
>with rwd, standard transmissions, and of course big pushrod V-8s. My
>current car is a 1995 Mustang GT.
>I think I'm ready for a change and hopefully a step up, but I look at the
>performance numbers in magazines like Road & Track, Motor Trend, and Car And
>Driver, and it's hard not to like the 2000 Mustang GT based on the objective
>numbers - 0-60 in 5.4 seconds, 1/4 mile in 14.0, and 66.8 mph in Motor
>Trend's slalom (for comparison, in the same MT slalom test, the 2000 M5
>65.6 mph). http://www.motortrend.com/
>I'm not foolish enough to suggest that a Mustang GT is a better car than a
>BMW. I also realize that Motor Trend's tests are all done on smooth
>surfaces, and that the Mustang's rear suspension is not all that
>sophisticated when the road gets a little bumpy. But I do know that there
>is a certain visceral thrill that comes with a Mustang when you stomp the
>throttle at low rpms, and the 300 lb/ft of torque pastes you back in the
>seat. There's also a lot of satisfaction when you shift hard into second
>and third, and are able to break the rear tires loose with each gear change.
>The reason I'm posting to this newsgroup is I want to get some replies
>giving reasons why I would be happier with a BMW 328 or M3 over a Mustang
>GT. I use my car as a daily driver - no street racing or anything like
>that, though I do occasionally drive it hard when the situation is safe and
>the opportunity is right. Please, no flames or insults! I mean no
>disrespect to BMW owners, but merely wonder why a BMW costs so much more
>than a Mustang GT, and what you get for that extra money.
Nope. The Cobra wasn't making listed power, but it was more than 250
and it was more than the GT. The only reason there is a discrepancy in
0-60 times is that they are done at different times, often at different
tracks, with different drivers under different conditions. Racing
side-by-side, it would be no contest.
Tullio's Big Dog Cyclery
RWD is nice if you never have to climb snowy hills. It's great for
bragging rights in net bench races, but in the real world I drive in it
sucks in the winter (hence my two cars). As far as what's a better buy in
the $30k sport sedan segment - there are many with more power, more room,
more features, and lower TCO (total cost of ownership) than the 323 I
assume your are referring to. Too many to list in fact.
> > time to plunk down my hard-earned cash, the Chrysler 300m (with the
> WHAT!? You PAID 30K for a FWD SLUSHIE!!!! How is that a better deal than
> 5 speed?
The 323 was *way* too small to even be considered. You wanna pay $30k for
a Contour-sized BMW, that's your business. Tell me - what car has the
300m's power, handling, size and features for anywhere near $30k ? Hmm ???
> > got the nod. And I still have my "muscle car" too, a 94 LT1 f-body
> > (Pontiac Firebird Formula 6-speed). I could care less about "curb
> Muscle cars are not sports car, their handling leaves something to be
> Come on! We are talking Live Rear Axle here.
That's one dead horse you're beating there pal. The whole IRS argument
boils down to one fact - it handles better on bumpy corners. I don't think
you really want to get into the bang for the buck argument (F-body vs. M3)
do you ? That's another tired thread that's been beaten to death. The fact
remains that the f-bodies are *fast* capable cars that can also carry the
speed through corners and haul it down to a stop quickly when needed.
You don't want to call it a sports car - fine. You want to believe that it
is somehow inferior based solely on the fact that it uses pushrods in the
motor and lacks IRS - fine.
Is your BMW better built ? Absolutely.
Is it faster around a racetrack ? Definitely.
Is it more refined ? No question.
Does it have the best steering this side of a Porcshe? Yes.
Are the brakes ready for repeated hard use on the track ? Without a doubt.
Will you be able to lose me on a smooth offramp? I doubt it....
Will you lose in a highway roll-on ? Oh yeah....
Will you spend a lot more $$$ over the years on maintenance ? Quite
Does my f-body get 28mpg on the highway ? Yep...
Can any Joe mechanic work on it (including me)? No problem...
Am I ready to trade my "inferior" F-body for an M3?
No way baby...
Unfortunately, these "too many to list" cars don't have the
exposure of a car that has been one of the "ten best cars" at Road
and Track nine times.
Firstly, I drive 1996 328i with the sports package (i.e. M3 suspension,
Pirelli 6000 tires etc.). This car is used for daily transportation and
occasional 'play-days' at Mosport. It is the first BMW that I have owned,
and it will not be the last.
My wife drives a 1992 25th Anniversary Mercury Cougar, 5l V8, etc.
As you know, the Coug has independent suspension, speed sensitive steering
etc., and handles quite well for a North American car, driving much like an
older 7 series BMW. Not bad at all.
As you can probably tell, I'm not a huge FWD fan, although I did rally a
Mini Cooper many years ago (now THAT car was a blast!!).
I live in southern Ontario, so winter tires are a must. The E36 with
traction control and a set of decent tires on steel rims, works very well in
the snow, and is more fun to slide in the corners than FWD which tends to
push, especially fun if you use the hand brake to get the rear kicked out!
At the track, or on those lovely highway off ramps, there is little that can
match the E36. It slides very controllably and the suspension makes
allowances for bumps and mistakes which would spell a certain trip into the
weeds for any fixed axle car.
Probably the best FWD car I have seen in the corners is the small Acura.
Are Mustangs, Firebirds, etc. fun to drive? YUP, no question. As are many
sports cars. One of the best cars I ever owned was a TR3 and another was a
'68 MG (with electric OD in 3rd and 4th gears, wire wheels, and leather).
These cars didn't go around corners that quickly, but there were all kinds
of exciting things happening mid-corner!
IMHO, the E36 is the BEST car I have ever experienced for day to day fun.
BTW, the last time I was at Mosport, someone brought a Pontiac GTP. It was
hilarious to watch this thing under-steer and wallow like some baroque
whale. The driver performed miracles keeping it on the track! Needless to
say, it was no competition for any of the BMW's or for that matter any of
Again, let me be quite clear that these views are my own, I do make
judgements about anothers' taste in cars, but for me the 328i is the
baseline from which all other cars are measured.
All the best!
> From: cdodson@ican'tsay.com (email spammers can bite me)
> Organization: Stratus Computer (DE) Inc, Maynard MA, USA
> Reply-To: /dev/null
> Newsgroups: alt.autos.bmw
> Date: 4 Feb 2000 17:41:28 GMT
> Subject: Re: BMW 3-series vs. Mustang GT
> Andy Chi <m3f...@yahoo.com> writes
>>> rare few
>>> that really *drive* their BMWs (and can afford to buy and maintain
>>> more power to you. However, in almost every category that BMW's
>>> in, there are better deals out there.
>> Huh, like what? Who else offers RWD, IRS, 5 speed, and decent brakes for
> RWD is nice if you never have to climb snowy hills. It's great for
> bragging rights in net bench races, but in the real world I drive in it
> sucks in the winter (hence my two cars). As far as what's a better buy in
> the $30k sport sedan segment - there are many with more power, more room,
> more features, and lower TCO (total cost of ownership) than the 323 I
> assume your are referring to. Too many to list in fact.
I should have said: " I do NOT make judgements about anothers' taste in
Just wanted to thank you all for the opinions you offered in this
thread. That there were no blatant insults about my Mustang pleasantly
surprised me a bit. I don't know if this small sample is some indication of
the class of BMW owners, but at least in this newsgroup the attitude is
mostly mature and the opinions offered were intelligent.
I particularly liked Alex Little's response, and would vote him most
descriptive and damn near poetic!
I also got several great personal e-mails, including one today where the
guy told me "You really do have to drive them -- on paper bmws always lose.
In the drivers seat is a completely different story."
In all I counted two former Camaro Z28 owners (Jim Parks and Michael
Grey) and at least three former current generation Mustang GT owners (Nancy?
Cohen, Brian Weatherill, and db?), and all are extremely pleased with their
BMWs and none miss the old muscle cars much. That's all the testimonial I
need right there, and precisely what I was hoping to get in response
From the advice given, it sounds like a 96-99 323 or 328 might be what I
should be looking for. The M3 really sounds ideal, but I think my budget is
only going to allow around $25K. I plan on doing my research now to learn
more about BMWs, and visit local car lots and see about some test drives.
When I'm ready I'll post again to the newsgroup and ask the questions that
still need asking. Thanks again!
<remove 7of9 for e-mail replies>
After reading this entire thread, and laughing my ass off I have to say that
it has, in it's entirety, reminded me of this joke which I am going to post
Now before y'all go to bitching about my posting a joke, As if to catch me
smokin in the boy's room, you just go read the joke and have a chuckle, then
go read this entire thread, And I assure you, you will enjoy the humor of it
all. And if you still don't get it or like it... Heheheh That won't bother
The players in this joke can be exchanged with BMW, Chevy, Ford, Audi,
Porsche, Saab, Volvo, Nissan, Whatever Drivers... You'll Get it... Of
course, the Last guy in this joke The cowboy from Texas, represents the Car
Three cowboys - one from Louisiana, one from Arkansas, and the
> > >other from Texas are sitting around a campfire, out on the
> > >lonesome prairie, each with the bravado for which they are
> > >famous. ***A night of tall tales begins.***
> > >
> > >The guy from Louisiana says, "I must be the meanest, toughest
> > >cowboy there is. Why, just the other day a bull got loose in the
> > >corral and gored six men before I wrestled it to the ground by
> > >the horns, with my bare hands."
> > >
> > >The guy from Arkansas couldn't stand to be bested. "Why, I was
> > >walking down the trail yesterday and a 15 foot long rattler slid
> > >out from under a rock and made a move for me. I grabbed that
> > >snake with my bare hands and bit its head off and sucked the
> > >poison down in one gulp. And I'm still here today!"
> > >
> > >The Texan remained silent, slowly stirring the coals with his
> > >penis.
Then I drove the BMW.
It really is unfair to compare the cars. Dynamically, the BMW is
superior in every way except acceleration. In braking, handling,
balance, and especially poise the BMW is like a revelation after driving
a Mustang. Climbing back into a 99 convertible after a month or so in
the BMW, I literally was convinced there was something wrong with the
Mustang, just because of the severe cowl shake and awkward handling. On
the other hand, the base Mustang GT offers straight line performance
that equals that of the top-of-the-line 3 series, for less than half the
price. But all that extra money spent on the BMW shows up everywhere,
from the silken engine to the unbelievably stiff chassis to the
outstanding suspension to the little touches that just keep impressing
you, like the full-size, matching alloy spare, or the rechargeable
flashlight in the glovebox, or the toolkit in the trunk, or the windows
that can be closed with the door key--the list could go on for pages.
The top doesn't go down, I've given up at least a second in the quarter,
and I don't have the V8 rumble, but I don't regret getting the BMW for a
second, and I don't think you will, either. Look at it this way--there
are plenty of cheap Fox bodies out there that you can pick up for a
song, and use to get your jollies on the weekend, and I may do just
that, because I do miss the V8 thrust. But as a daily driver, the BMW
will not disappoint.
Bill Jones wrote:
> Jim Parks <jbp...@erols.com> wrote in message
> > I recently sold my '98 Z-28 Camaro, with the LS1 engine and
> > 6 speed, and bought a '96 328is, 5 speed. The comparsion is
> > difficult. There are few cars faster than the Z28 and none
> > that only cost $23K, loaded. The Camaro ran flawlessly and
> > ran well. The torque was awesome, and it actually handled
> > fairly well. In short, a fun car to drive, great value for
> > the money. The same comments apply to the Mustang, more or
> > less. I've had both.
> > The Bimmer is more comfortable and even more fun to drive.
> > The handling is as good as any car I have ever driven...even
> > goes through the snow ok. It is much better balanced than
> > the Camaro. The fit and finish is superior, but then it
> > cost about $40K new, so you would expect it.
> Hmm. Well, I definitely owe it to myself to try out a BMW if you prefer it
> to the LS1 Z28. That car is basically the most powerful and sophisticated
> "muscle car" that ever was. I was hoping to find someone here who actually
> drove a Camaro or Mustang, because I have found that many folks with BMWs,
> Volvos, Audis, etc. more or less dismiss Mustang GTs and Camaro Z28s, and
> are quite surprised when they get in one and experience 300+ lb/ft of torque
> first-hand. So to find a previous LS1 owner who now owns a BMW 328 and
> isn't looking back, well that's refreshing to hear.
> Thanks for the reply.
You can find 1995 M3s with reasonable mileage for $25K.
David Ripton dri...@netcom.com
spamgard(tm): To email me, put "geek" in your Subject line.
>If you can't live without the torque, your only viable option right now is a
>post 95 E36 M3 (at low to mid 30's, I consider them a better buy than the new
>regular 3's. But that's just me. I like hard clutch, noisy engine, and crappy
>stereo on a car:-p). At about 240 for torque, it's way better than either 323 or
>328. Or, budget permitting, you minght want to wait for E46 M3 at 340HP and 6
>gears (still no torque, sorry, only 260, that's just what you get with 6
Shame you don't get the 330d then. 289lb/ft standard, a small chip
change will get you up to 330-350lb/ft. And you'll get 42mpg
highway/26mpg city too. It's even cheaper than the 328i over here...
Jens Kr. Kirkebø