2003 BMW 325i or 325xi ?? thoughts

Hello.
I am going to buy my first BMW. I am going to buy a used 2003 model 325 next month. I am considering two sedan models: 325i or 325xi.
All things being equal, the only differnece that I am aware of is the
all-wheel-drive of the xi vs the rear-wheel-drive of the i.
I will retain my 1993 Toyota SR5 p/u for winter snow driving (I live in the Northeast; northshore area of Boston), so the BMW generally shouldn't be driven in the snow. But, that said, there may well be times when driving my pickup isn't in the cards (i.e.: kids with me; on a date); which means the BMW might see snow.
My question is really this: how much sport driving enthusiams do I give up if I get the xi; would it drive much different?
I wouldn't say I'm a huge drive like a race fan, but I also don't want to sacrafice the supreme performance of the well known 325i for the sake of better traction for a few days in the snow.
I realize that should I ever try to re-sell the car, the xi would be easier to sell in the Northeast.
Last year I lived in Ireland for 7 months, and drove a Saab 9-3. Liked it, but didn't love it. Now that I have the cash to buy a second vehicle, I want a 4 door, absolute fun to drive, quality sedan. The BMW from all accounts is THE choice. Always have wanted a BMW since I could reach a gas pedal.
Thoughts? Any and all welcome.
... Ralph
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
If you live somewhere it snows a lot - buy the xi. It will be slower and thirstier than the i, but will behave a lot better in bad weather. The xi may be more expensive to maintain, especially the drive train.
If it doesn't snow a lot buy the i, and borrow your brother-in-laws land rover when you need it.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

They drive almost identically. The xi is a little slower, and you won't have the sport suspension. I recommend getting a set of summer tires (on rims similar to the 325i sport suspension 8x17 wheels with 225/45R17 tires) and a set of winter tires.
The BMW with snow tires will run rings around the Toyota in the snow. You will get about 1mpg less than the non-xi version.
FloydR '01 330xi
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

all. The engine is rather small and you need to rev it up in order to accelerate properly. Behaviour on snow is very good. The transmission doesn't make any more problems than a rear wheel model. It's a reliable car. Hope this helps. G. Tarantino 2001 BMW 325 xi Touring (187,000 km)
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

all. The engine is rather small and you need to rev it up in order to accelerate properly. Behaviour on snow is very good. The transmission doesn't make any more problems than a rear wheel model. It's a reliable car. Hope this helps. G. Tarantino 2001 BMW 325 xi Touring (187,000 km)
G .. Actually this does help. Thanks. On the plus side I sort of like the idea that the handling in the snow is good (I doubt I'll be able to keep the 4x4 '93 Toyota p/u running forever). And I do plan on keeping the 325 for many years.
It would be nice to have all things in a car, but you can't. The BMW 325 is a sports sedan, and does excellent justice to that. But I'm not sure it falls squarely in the genre of 'sportscar'. The "M" badges, and the Z's more fit that bill.
But an M badge, or a Z is not in my cards. I'm getitng a 3 series. Like I said before, only 1 decision left, and that's either the i or the xi.
Back to your xi.
Do you feel you give up a lot, and I expect this to be relative, on handling (cornering, hugging the road), or acceleration (off the line, through the curves, passing), or full speed (top end), as compared to the "i" model.
Of those three parameters, the absolute least concern for me is outright speed; as Annie Lexon once belted out "it don't give me such a thrill". Hugging the road, and quickness do much more to quicken my pulse.
... Ralph
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Buy the one that has the most carefully kept maintenance log. If the owner didn't keep a log at all, stay away. --scott
--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 23 Feb 2008 18:27:16 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@panix.com (Scott Dorsey) wrote:

???
I've never kept a vehicle log in my life, and I'm as meticulous about vehicle maintenance as anyone who's ever lived. And that includes 25+ years of SCCA racing.
Logs are for the anal retentive with low IQs.
-- Larry (61 and my memory still functions...) '01 Aprilia Mille SL Falco '02 Honda 919 (backup and commuter bike) '84 Interceptor 500 (small emergency backup bike) '95 Miata R, modified '02 BMW 325i '01 Caterham Superlight '72 Elden FF
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
(Scott Dorsey) wrote:

Which is fine if you want to keep the car forever, but if you ever want to sell it...

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The log is partly about being meticulous, but mostly about being able to show to someone else that you have been meticulous.

Logs are for people who have premature failures and need to demonstrate to the dealer that they really DID perform that maintenance on time. Or for people selling their cars. Or for people who remember they changed that wheel bearing some time in the mid-eighties but can't remember if it was the left or right. --scott
--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

How do you know when routine things need doing - and were last done - if you don't keep some form of log?
In the UK most use the service book for this. That and any receipts for work done can make a big difference to the resale price. Certainly worth the effort.
--
*If tennis elbow is painful, imagine suffering with tennis balls *

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"Dave Plowman (News)" wrote

I bet he waits for the idiot light on the dashboard to tell him.
Pete
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The only idiot light that has ever come on on any car I've owned is a single Miata "air bag" light.
I simply do everything a lot more often than is required. It's an old racer's habit; when you get used to doing tear-downs or 100% bolt-tightenings after every race, ordinary maintenance is trivial.
-- Larry
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
While I feel I should thank everyone for indulging me their valuable opinions of vehicle maint logs, it behooves me to suggest that perhaps this thread has digressed off the intended path.
And, it certainly suggest I might want to stay away from any questions of vehicle maint logs. A bit polarizing.
... Ralph
(Scott Dorsey) wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
pltrgyst wrote:

I don't keep them either. If someone "stays away" from my vehicles because I've no "log", it's their loss. I don't need to "prove" that I'm not an idiot who doesn't change his oil.

Well, to each his own...
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.