BMW E46 M3
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View Poll Results: What's Your E46 M3 Story?
Current & Original E46 M3 Owner (had since new) 23 9.70%
Current Non-Original Owner (but first time E46 M3 owner) 60 25.32%
Current Owner; Returned to the E46 M3 platform after moving on 15 6.33%
Never owned an E46 M3, but own(ed) other M3 generation(s) 40 16.88%
Never owned an E46 M3, but own(ed) other BMW(s) or M-Car(s) (non-M3) 38 16.03%
Never owned an E46 M3, never owned a BMW 2 0.84%
Moved on to another BMW (non-M), no longer own E46 M3 18 7.59%
Moved on to another BMW M-Car (non-M3), no longer own E46 M3 9 3.80%
Moved on to an older generation M3 (E30, E36), no longer own E46 M3 2 0.84%
Moved on to a newer generation M3/4 (E9x, F8x, G8x), no longer own E46 M3 32 13.50%
Moved on to a different brand (non-BMW), no longer own E46 M3 3 1.27%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 237. You may not vote on this poll

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      04-02-2020, 09:46 PM   #45
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I owned a '94 Acura Integra GS-R when I started looking at E30 M3s again (kind of fell in love at introduction around '86-87 but was not in any position to acquire one). Bought one in 2000 before prices went upward, and I drove it home to MA in Feb. Scary driving through West Virginia mountains on summer tires with a bit of melted frost and 34* temps!

Around 2004, I moved into an E36 M3/4/5 and sold the Integra. Artic Silber over black leather, and I swapped the manual, sedan seat for a sport seat (aka Vader), did a few mods (shorty headers with tune, Bilsteins, Autosolutions SSK).

A few years later, I started looking at ZHPs for over a year but only found one Mystic over black sedan at a price I though was too high. A local reseller had a Carbon Black over black coupe with the SMG which he let me drive (even let me take it home for a night!). My needs for a sedan changed, so I widened my range of interesting vehicles. Given some of the potential issues, I decided to stay with a 6 speed. In Feb. 2009, I found an interesting E46 M3 through BMW CCA, flew to Indianapolis on St. Patrick's Day, liked it, and drove it home to Boston. Put the E36 up for sale, but for a brief spell, I had the E30, E36, and E46 M3s.

Topas Blau over black cloth was a rare combination, especially without the moonroof but power sport seats with lumbar. The seller, who was the original owner, told me he went to a Boston dealership with a helmet to see whether he would fit under a moonroof (he didn't), so he special ordered the car without one and with the cloth power seats for less sliding and maximum adjustability as well as xenon lights. While he intended to use it for autocrosses and maybe some HPDEs, his priorities changed when he and his wife had a son shortly after taking delivery. He told me he didn't get to accomplish his intended goals with the car, and after 7 years and only 45k miles, it was time to get a sedan for a car seat. I guess the local dealership didn't offer him much toward a new 335i, so he posted on the CCA website. Lucky me!

Even though I still refer to it as the best car I've owned, I decided to sell it when an interesting 128i came up. I didn't like the high level of maintenance nor the upkeep costs of the E46 M3 after a second round of rod bearings (PO had them done under the service action). Rear floor issues and VANOS cam concerns scared me into selling it.
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      04-02-2020, 10:02 PM   #46
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Current owner of a 06 M3 coupe ZCP and a 04 M3 convertible.
The fun never stops!!!
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      04-03-2020, 10:13 AM   #47
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Owned a 2001 Steel Gray/Imola SMG about 8-9 years ago after growing up on mostly Hondas. Sold my S2000 at the time and got in to the E46. I loved my S2000, but I never looked back after that E46.

In between I had an Interlagos E92, a black E90, and a silverstone X5M.

3 years ago I started to see E46s getting harder and harder to find so I picked this up bone stock 2002 tiag/black 6 speed with 74K for 14k.


Now this is where it's at after full suspension, brakes, lot's of maintenance sitting at 95k miles.

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      04-03-2020, 11:15 AM   #48
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Looking for years for a Mint BMW M3 didn't mind the color just wanted to be manual and be below 80,000 kms. Couldn't find any in Central America until one of best friends became Sales Manager at a BMW Dealer and help me track down a 2002 Stahl-grau with 16,000 kms. Happy as f*ck![IMG]undefined[/IMG][IMG]undefined[/IMG]
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      04-03-2020, 09:26 PM   #49
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Never had an E46 M3, had a stingy boss who took me out in his but never let me drive! That car made me realize Cinnamon over Carbon Black is simply the best color combo there ever was!

But... after my sublime experience with a lesser E46 330xi, the E46 M3 became only second to the E39 M5 on the attainable dream car scale. I just got an M340i. When I have a hankering for that unbeatable combo of perfect NA engine, telepathic hydraulic steering and a gods-blessed stick-shift, this car will top the list with her big sister!
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R.I.P. "Heidi" - 2005 BMW 330xi 6MT BSM / Black - Sport, Premium, Cold Weather, Harmon Kardon, Navigation
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      04-04-2020, 05:00 PM   #50
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The one that got away: A Danish military man from Bornholm advertised his E46 CSL in black w only 7K miles back in 2010 for $45K. I offered him my 1969 Mach 1 Shaker w 4-speed manual and cash. He refused, I raised my offer, still 5K off, and he sold it to third party a week later. I owned an almost New 1990 E30 from 1992-1997, never any repairs in 80K miles. Two years ago, I bought a New F80C w DCT. Will I now be dissapointed w the CSL tranny?!? But the CSL and E46 M3 still retain such a Classic, sporty stance after all these years. I spent 10 minutes a year ago in NYC Chelsea area and saw one parked at night time. People must have thought I was gonna steal it😄
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      04-04-2020, 05:10 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MightyOF80 View Post
My love for the M3 brand runs deep. I gotta admit I'm not fully okay with the fact that the G will be going AWD, but I'm not opposed to change. Had the pleasure of driving every model except for the E30, which I rode in when I was a young kid (brand new Evo at the time). Never owned an E46, but fell in love with them while I was in college and doing valet parking. At that time they were the new model and because I worked at a high end spot I got to drive several. Always wanted to buy one and pretty much convinced the wife to let me buy one on several occasions. I ended up getting a great deal on a new F80 while I was in Germany and that was my first M3. I still envision myself owning a Mystic Blue E46 (manual) one day, but we'll see. I'm planning on keeping my F80 for a long time, since I love it.
I love my 2018 F80 so much, that I got it clear wrapped all over😂
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      04-04-2020, 05:11 PM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sharocks View Post
Coming from two prior E36 M3's, I've had my E46 M3 for a while now. Can't get rid of the car lol.

I just keep adding, hence the sig lmao
Loving the look. Are those square ZCPs?
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      04-06-2020, 11:29 PM   #53
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Owned an e46 m3 many years ago before moving to Texas. Then bought an f80 for a daily and only recently returned to an e46 m3 for my track car.

Currently both under wraps during this isolation period.
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      04-06-2020, 11:36 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sc_tr0jan_m3 View Post
Owned an e46 m3 many years ago before moving to Texas. Then bought an f80 for a daily and only recently returned to an e46 m3 for my track car.

Currently both under wraps during this isolation period.
Cool pic. Where did u get those car covers.
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      04-09-2020, 04:09 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by IB M View Post
Cool pic. Where did u get those car covers.
https://prestige-covers.com/

Worth every cent. Really well made covers and fit like a glove.
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2004 Titanium Silver E46 M3 6 Speed | :: Track Car ::
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      04-29-2020, 01:05 PM   #56
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Current 06 M3 ZCP and 02 M5 owner. Previously have owned an E36 M3 and 01 530i/5 speed. Feel fortunate every day I enter garage.

Wish we could put pics in our signature on this board.
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      05-02-2020, 09:25 AM   #57
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I picked up my 01 LSB M3 in 2011, landing my first real job out of college. Back then it was my weekend car, with my blue saab 900 being my DD. 112k on the OD when I bought it, 153k to this day in 2020. First major work I've done on a car was a valve adjustment, both my dad and I decided to tackle it one weekend. I also had a chance to check out the exhaust hub tab on the Vanos which was fully intact.

I am going to finally have the VANOS done at EAS in Anaheim, along with my subframe reinforcement. But, this car hasn't really given me any problems (although it does sit next to my dad's 911 at his house.) It's a great car, makes me smile that these cars are sought after these days, and I own mine outright! Proud moment for me..


While my DD Saab 900 is gone, I now have a Tacoma I use for my normal stuff. I'll see if I can get some pics of my m car on here. Following suit with my love of all things blue, my taco is naturally, "cavalry blue" I can't get enought of the color!
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      05-10-2020, 06:26 PM   #58
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Started with a 1991 E30 M Technic convertible 6 speed sold it in 2003. Current owner of an e46 m3 convertible since 2013. Purchased with 10k miles at the time and really enjoyed the car. Upgrading to a M2 competition and contemplating selling the e46 since I don't want to let it sit outside Hmmmm!!!!
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      05-10-2020, 06:43 PM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuji550i View Post
Started with a 1991 E30 M Technic convertible 6 speed sold it in 2003. Current owner of an e46 m3 convertible since 2013. Purchased with 10k miles at the time and really enjoyed the car. Upgrading to a M2 competition and contemplating selling the e46 since I don't want to let it sit outside Hmmmm!!!!
As great as the M2 competition is, don't sell your e46, you will retreat it! Keep it for as long as you can if you're someone that appreciates the analog experience.

I will soon have a M2C on order and even then, I still want a e46...
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      05-14-2020, 03:07 PM   #60
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I have been fortunate enough to have 3 @ E46 M3 and 3 @ E9x M3

... here's the last 4 of them!
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      05-14-2020, 09:11 PM   #61
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Always loved the E46M and the E39M based on aesthetics and design. Late to the game picked up my first E46 in 2014; one owner IB over Alcantara, 6MT ZCP. Bought it sight unseen and shipped in from San Diego.
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      05-16-2020, 11:44 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m3welt View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by lnwlf7 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by m3welt View Post
I am proud to say I've owned all but an E9x M3 generations and the e46 was truly a special car.

However, I think the M2 is actually the most fun and most likely the modern version of the e46. It definitely doesn't compare to the e46 in the looks department but the M2 is growing on me. But performance and handling is much better the the e46. It's kind of the sweet spot in between and F82 and an E46.

I currently have an e30 M3 and the M2 and I think I've struck a nice balance. E30 has the looks and M2 has the comfort and reliable performance.
Can you make a comparison between M2 and e92 M3?
Unfortunately not yet, the E9x M3 is the only one I haven't owned yet. I would assume the M2 has the upper hand in everything but the sound of that S65 V8.
m2 is all chassis and low to mid range power and torque, e90 m3 is all engine and making more power the higher you rev it.
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      05-22-2020, 06:34 AM   #63
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Current Non-Original Owner (but first time E46 M3 owner). Just bought my 05 M3 yesterday. Took a risk on it and bought it sight unseen but the price was great, condition was amazing, and the GM reviewed all the service records with me plus a few things they've done prior to putting it on the market. For the price, I couldnt say no.

My Junior year of college(2009) all the spoiled kids were driving their new E90s but ironically the worse one was my neighbor who I shared a driveway with. I fell in love with his N54 335 (that he trashed) and then he sold it. A month later a truck was dropping of his E46 M3 and we took a ride in it. It was game over after that. 2 20 year olds flying down a residential street redlining a S54 in 1st and 2nd gear. Scared the s#!t out of me but hooked me for life. Been my dream car ever since and now I finally have one to sit along side my N54 E90.

M4 is next. Trying to be patient to see if I can take advantage of the G8X coming and the lease returned F82s hopfully flooding the market.

Love the managed chaos feel of the E46. Its exciting but I'm still in control. Its small and light but big enough to be practical for me at least. I like how the F8X feels like its trying to kill you and plus its newer so I dont feel bad throwing a ton of miles on it driving up and down the East coast. My E90...IDK whats going to happen with that. Love it but I dont need 2 twin turbo I6 RWD cars. Just so excited that I finally pulled the trigger on the E46.


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Past: 2006 E90 325i Sparkling Graphite Metallic | Sport | Premium | Cold Weather
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      09-20-2020, 11:10 PM   #64
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Non original owner. Took many years to find a 2006 ZCP I was looking for
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      09-22-2020, 12:41 PM   #65
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Had the first E46 M3 back in 2002 loved it but I was still a kid back then.. Many years later got an '02 vert and that was great but after kid was on the way vert didn't really fit the profile.. so fast forward some more, I'm back in an low miles '02 Carbon Black 6spd and love it.. previous ones I owned were all SMG.

I'll post a pic later
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      10-06-2020, 06:56 AM   #66
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Bought my first M3 out of college back in 05. It was an 03 Carbon black/black SMG coupe. Daily drove that car 22.5K per year for 2.5 years until I hit a rough gravel patch and lost the rear end one night totalling it.

Many years later, married, 2 boys, i begged my wife to let me get back into blowing money on cars. And i ended up with this Carbon Black/black M3 vert, SMG with 84k on it that i bought back in may. Its been a labor of love as everything that can crumble and break is, but its been fun. And its a nice little project!
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