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      10-14-2021, 08:59 PM   #1
Lucky1
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What to expect going 128i to E90 335xi

I love my 2008 BMW 128i 6MT w/ sports package with 136,000 miles on the odo. Since purchasing it I've added some other very nice vehicles (Z4MR, 911 C4S) which satisfy the performance itch but do not have near the comfort nor practicality the 128i has.

Lately been thinking of getting a 4 door vehicle with better performance, more rear seat room, 6MT and AWD for better winter performance (as this is now my defacto winter car). Tried the F30 335xi 6MT but while the engine was incredible the steering and shifting inputs felt a bit soft and floaty to me.

Thinking now of going back to same era and looking at a 2011 335xi 6MT sedan with N55 engine, maybe of similar mileage or a bit less if my budget can swing it.

Anyone have experience between these two cars to advice what I'll experience overall including driving dynamics if I make this switch? What would I love about the new car and what if anything would I miss dearly on the 128i?
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      10-14-2021, 09:20 PM   #2
vt100
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Not 128i -> 335xi but I used to have a 335iS (with N54 engine) for 3 years and my wife had (and still has) a 128i at the same time.
I loved my 3 serious - it was quick, responsive, and very comfortable. But every time I was driving it _after_ driving my wife's car I felt for a moment it was way too big Even though there was no that of a big difference size/weight-wise I still felt that 128i was more lively, more agile, and simply more fun to drive.

And reliability - ugh... so many things I got replaced on 335iS. 128i has been way more reliable in the long run (3x- knocking on wood).

Once I found my Z4MC it was no doubt that the 3 series had to go.
Almost zero regrets ever since..

PS: but every time after I've driven my wife's 128i I spend some time online searching for a 135iS or 1M
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      10-14-2021, 09:58 PM   #3
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2013 BMW 128i  [0.00]
My wife recently totaled her 2008 128i Sport and we replaced it with an extremely well-kept lower-mile 2007 328xi Sport. At first she liked the extra comfort, especially after her wreck. Now with a couple of months on it, she really misses the 128i. At least I still have mine!
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      10-14-2021, 10:14 PM   #4
vt100
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BTW, forgot to mention, steering on 128i feels better than on 3 series. It still provides lots of feedback (good old hydraulics of course ) but it's much lighter on 3 series.
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      10-15-2021, 08:08 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucky1 View Post
I love my 2008 BMW 128i 6MT w/ sports package with 136,000 miles on the odo. Since purchasing it I've added some other very nice vehicles (Z4MR, 911 C4S) which satisfy the performance itch but do not have near the comfort nor practicality the 128i has.

Lately been thinking of getting a 4 door vehicle with better performance, more rear seat room, 6MT and AWD for better winter performance (as this is now my defacto winter car). Tried the F30 335xi 6MT but while the engine was incredible the steering and shifting inputs felt a bit soft and floaty to me.

Thinking now of going back to same era and looking at a 2011 335xi 6MT sedan with N55 engine, maybe of similar mileage or a bit less if my budget can swing it.

Anyone have experience between these two cars to advice what I'll experience overall including driving dynamics if I make this switch? What would I love about the new car and what if anything would I miss dearly on the 128i?
Nice garage list. Regarding the N55, earlier versions have had rod bearing issues, especially the first MY 2011’s. If your heart is set on getting one, get a PPI. AWD adds weight and IMHO RWD with snows will probably do just fine. In Upstate NY in my younger days I used a e28 with snows and handled great w/o traction control or any other assistance that newer cars have today. When I’m driving in the Midwest I throw snows on my f36 RWD and it handles great.

Edit: just saw that you’re in Toronto. But hey, use chains!
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Also our E90 330 and 325 will soon have some sort of boost. So there is actually more of a chance to get more hp out of a 330 then a 335 in my opinion
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Seems like ur out of touch with baseball a bit. A few years behind.
You didnít know who Hader was. And Kershaw is a mess in the playoffs. No thanks
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      10-15-2021, 10:16 PM   #6
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Dude nice garage.
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      10-16-2021, 09:41 AM   #7
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No direct experience with the turbo E9x but I'd personally lean more towards a 328. Even though they have their own special issues (oil leaks, water pumps) they tend to be less expensive to keep. The N51/2 is also a lightweight rev-happy darling of a motor.
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      10-16-2021, 02:59 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wdb View Post
No direct experience with the turbo E9x but I'd personally lean more towards a 328.
Agree. I'd probably try to find a 330i but 328i can be modified to the same power level easily.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wdb View Post
Even though they have their own special issues (oil leaks, water pumps) they tend to be less expensive to keep.
Hehe, N54 has all these issues plus a huge pile of turbo related problems.
To name a few..
- because of higher engine operating temperature the water pump tends to fails much earlier (@60kmiles in my case) on turbo engines,
- PCV and the entire crankcase ventilation system gets clogged for the same reason and much sooner than on N51/2,
- this leads to higher crankcase pressure which in turns causes valve cover leak and oil pan leak (and potentially main seal leaks) also much sooner vs N51/2.
- plastic charge pipe tends to crack over time,
- turbos themself go out rather quickly - 70kmiles for me (wastegate stopped to close properly causing boost leak),
- then direct injection forces you to do valve cleaning @60kmiles - 80kmiles (and I was just replacing the valve cover on N51 and all the valves are clean and shiny @80kmiles).
- also IMO high low end torque wears out clutch and the entire drive train much much sooner. I replaced the clutch @75kmiles, and driveshafts 5kmiles later on 335iS. Maybe I got unlucky and the first owner abused the car before handing it over to me - that I dunno

Quote:
Originally Posted by wdb View Post
The N51/2 is also a lightweight rev-happy darling of a motor.
yep, I love this engine. High low end torque from N54 was fun and addictive but not even close to fun I get revving N51 getting out of turns and ramps

Last edited by vt100; 10-17-2021 at 04:22 AM..
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