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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      04-01-2020, 03:58 PM   #23
greekcs
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Former owner of a 2003 M3. I purchased it in 2006 with 28K miles and kept it for 9 years, selling it with 59K miles. I spent close to 40K in modifications. Still miss her to this day.

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2003 11/02 Steel Gray Metallic on Red M3 - SMGII - VF570 - SUPERSPRINT - KW - BBS - CSL ROOF SOLD
2015 09/14 Alpine White on Red 435i xDrive MPPK - Expensive black vinyl with special lettering. SOLD
2020 12/19 Mineral Gray Metallic on Black Vinyl interior M340i xDrive

Last edited by greekcs; 04-02-2020 at 11:45 AM..
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      04-01-2020, 04:02 PM   #24
cenz422
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Silver bullet

Current non-original owner since 2013. Fell in love back in 2001, and took me long time to find what i was looking for.
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      04-01-2020, 04:36 PM   #25
SolidSnake2634
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2001 BMW M3  [3.03]
I picked mine up back on 5-9-11 and daily drove it for 4 years. After that, I drove my family's old Camry for 2 years until I leased a 2017 Camry. Just returned the Camry last month and picked up a 2020 G01 X3 M40i and couldn't be happier! Now I just need to find time to drive the E46....

Heres some pics of my car's evolution from when I got it, how it looked for most of the 4 years dailying it, what it looks like now, and my new daily. Cheers guys!
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      04-01-2020, 06:32 PM   #26
DanG
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I owned a 2003 E46 M3 for ten years. I loved that car but it became quite unreliable after 100,000 miles. I currently have a 2018 M Performance M2 since January 2018.
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      04-01-2020, 07:08 PM   #27
MightyOF80
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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.
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      04-01-2020, 07:34 PM   #28
EKG 12
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Current original owner of a 2002 E46 M3, Sterling Gray/Imola Red Coupe, 6MT, 18" OEM wheels.
Daily drive for all these years.
I am now on the list for a M2 CS. Wish they had better colors though.
Wife has a 2018 M3 CS, San Marino Blue. Now, that is a blue!
My son wants the E46.
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      04-01-2020, 07:56 PM   #29
sharocks
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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
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      04-01-2020, 08:17 PM   #30
DiegoM3sa
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I have owned an E36 M3, 2 E46 M3s and now own an E92 M3. E46 was by far my favorite. Last one was a 2006 Imola red on M-texture slicktop 6MT. Told myself I was never going to sell it but ended up selling it a close friend who is now selling it as well!

Here are some pictures right before I sold it and some of the E92
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      04-01-2020, 08:28 PM   #31
PDM5
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Got an e39 M5 back in 2013 and daily drove it for about 2 years before unloading it due to unreliability issues despite putting loads of preventative maintenance into it (only car to EVER leave me on the side of the road - it happened multiple times in fact). I put so much money into that car and the new owner basically stole it for the price I sold it for, but it was just a relationship that just couldn't recover. Bought an e46 ZHP sedan (manual), but dumped it after 2 months as I couldn't live with the lack of power. Picked up a 2003.5 Silver Grey e46 M3 (manual) and had it for about 3 wonderful years and dumped tons of money into it in preventative maintenance as well. After 3 years, I just wanted something more "comfortable" and somehow ended up in a Gen 1 CTS-V - great car for what it is and loved the V8, but I missed the e46 M3 size and wanted adaptive dampers and all the new technological jazz.

So here I am today in a 240i slicktop manual that is comfortable when I want it to be, has loads of torque that I missed from both the e39 M5 and CTS-V, and is relatively the size of the e46 M3. For me it's the Goldilocks zone and I didn't even consider an M2 as I daily all of my cars and I know that is a better car, but for me personally is a little too rough.
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      04-01-2020, 09:18 PM   #32
eljay
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DiegoM3sa View Post
I have owned an E36 M3, 2 E46 M3s and now own an E92 M3. E46 was by far my favorite. Last one was a 2006 Imola red on M-texture slicktop 6MT. Told myself I was never going to sell it but ended up selling it a close friend who is now selling it as well!

Here are some pictures right before I sold it and some of the E92
Quote:
Originally Posted by DiegoM3sa View Post
I have owned an E36 M3, 2 E46 M3s and now own an E92 M3. E46 was by far my favorite. Last one was a 2006 Imola red on M-texture slicktop 6MT. Told myself I was never going to sell it but ended up selling it a close friend who is now selling it as well!

Here are some pictures right before I sold it and some of the E92
I have to ask: are those 17" or 18" Apex wheels? And what brake kit did you have there?
Thanks!
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      04-01-2020, 09:24 PM   #33
DiegoM3sa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eljay View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by DiegoM3sa View Post
I have owned an E36 M3, 2 E46 M3s and now own an E92 M3. E46 was by far my favorite. Last one was a 2006 Imola red on M-texture slicktop 6MT. Told myself I was never going to sell it but ended up selling it a close friend who is now selling it as well!

Here are some pictures right before I sold it and some of the E92
Quote:
Originally Posted by DiegoM3sa View Post
I have owned an E36 M3, 2 E46 M3s and now own an E92 M3. E46 was by far my favorite. Last one was a 2006 Imola red on M-texture slicktop 6MT. Told myself I was never going to sell it but ended up selling it a close friend who is now selling it as well!

Here are some pictures right before I sold it and some of the E92
I have to ask: are those 17" or 18" Apex wheels? And what brake kit did you have there?
Thanks!
They are 18"s and I did the Porsche 996 Brembo kit on it. Worked with CSL rotors. Just need the rally road brackets
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2006 ///M3 Imola on M-Texture Alcantara 6MT Slicktop - Sold Journal
2002 ///M3 Imola on Dove 6MT - Sold
1995 ///M3 Alpine White on Dove 5MT - Sold

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      04-01-2020, 09:26 PM   #34
eljay
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Time to add my story...
I have dreamed of an M3 ever since.I saw an E30 in flesh back in 1990. When an E46 came out, I dreamt of it and has a CSL picture printed on my desk.
In 2011, I finally managed to find exactly what I wanted after two years of searching.

Mine is a Silver Grey 2006 M3 Coupe, 6-speed manual, Competition Package, manual seats, no sunroof, Florida car that is stored every winter.
I absolutely love it and have zero plans to ever sell it.

I would like to get an OEM CSL boot and high quality CSL rep front bumper at some point. But I also wonder whether I should keep it all original. The only thing I changed was the interior. It came black and swapped in a Cinnamon interior.
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      04-01-2020, 10:06 PM   #35
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For ///M cars I've owned E92 DCT M3, E90 ZCP 6MT and now E46 M3 SMG.
Non-original 3rd owner, Eisenmann Sport Exchaust, Bone stock. My favorite car of all time.
Imola Red is mine

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      04-02-2020, 12:33 AM   #36
grabbou
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Current owner, I got my M3 this year as an addition to the F82 I got two years ago. That’s how my journey with M started and just couldn’t miss the opportunity to try the previous-gen experience 😭
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      04-02-2020, 04:33 AM   #37
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I've never owned an e46, but in 04... my coworker and I became roomates. We had just been moved from contractors to full time, and being both 24 thought this was a time to buy our first new cars and civics and altimas (which is what we had at the time) were not what we were doing again...

I bought a new 2005 infiniti g35 coupe. I stayed in the nissan family... and german cars were supposedly "not worth the money / expenses" It was well basically a japanese mustang, it was loud and had a great exhaust note, but definitely muscle car like.

He bought a used 2001 e46 m3.... Well , the only thing they had in common was they were roughly equivalent in a straight line and I do drive a bmw now.
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      04-02-2020, 10:48 AM   #38
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I owned a 2004 M3 from Jan 04 to June 09. Titanium silver with Imola Red interior and manual transmission. Got a lot of compliments on the car especially the interior.

I guess I'm in the minority of folks that absolutely loved the car but don't miss the car now - because I got everything from it in experience - drove it like it stole it, took it to the track, went on road trips with friends, a one month Vanos repair, etc.

It's always amazing to see it on the streets more than 16 years later - I hope it rises in value and gets the true collectors treatment it deserves!
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      04-02-2020, 01:31 PM   #39
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I had 04 , 6MT. I loved that car but it got totaled in Hurricane Sandy. I tried to find another but could not find one at the time. I bought a E92 6 MT. Comparing the two cars, the E92 was too cushy in every way, the E46 reminded me to respect the car and the speed. The shifter was kinda sloppy but I changed it to a Rogue shifter. It was a great improvement.
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      04-02-2020, 03:10 PM   #40
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Never owned an E46 M3, but current owner of a (Euro) E36 M3 3.2.

I've always been an E36 guy and even though I like the E46 M3 very much, I never 'connected' with it that made me want one.

Although I would take a CSL any day, but these have gone for out of reach.

I'm the 4th owner. First one in Holland as I imported mine from Germany. It's 1 of 12 LHD AW on black M3 3.2 cabrio's.





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      04-02-2020, 03:34 PM   #41
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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?
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      04-02-2020, 03:45 PM   #42
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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.
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      04-02-2020, 07:04 PM   #43
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I have had my E46 M3 since 2/2013. It's since been cut up and turned into a caged track car.

It's actually pretty reliable as long as you stay ahead of the VANOS, rod bearings, subframe and maintenance.

I love driving it but I love my E90 M3 a little more.
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      04-02-2020, 09:21 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eljay View Post
Time to add my story...
I have dreamed of an M3 ever since.I saw an E30 in flesh back in 1990. When an E46 came out, I dreamt of it and has a CSL picture printed on my desk.
In 2011, I finally managed to find exactly what I wanted after two years of searching.

Mine is a Silver Grey 2006 M3 Coupe, 6-speed manual, Competition Package, manual seats, no sunroof, Florida car that is stored every winter.
I absolutely love it and have zero plans to ever sell it.

I would like to get an OEM CSL boot and high quality CSL rep front bumper at some point. But I also wonder whether I should keep it all original. The only thing I changed was the interior. It came black and swapped in a Cinnamon interior.
Wow that's very similar to my story. I just got a pretty good replica front bumper recently and a OEM CSL trunklid and carpet. Also swapped my interior from dove grey to black. Lemme know if you need help finding a trunk! I'm about to get mine painted and installed soon.
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