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      05-25-2014, 10:30 AM   #23

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Glad you enjoy it!
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      05-25-2014, 11:18 AM   #24
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Great car and impressive review. Keep driving!
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      05-25-2014, 11:24 AM   #25

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Need a quote or assistance from David? GO HERE--> or 202-262-2900
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      05-25-2014, 11:32 AM   #26
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Good writing and nice to see some Seattle representation.
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      05-25-2014, 11:43 AM   #27

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awesome write up
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      05-25-2014, 12:07 PM   #28
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Congrats. AW really shows off the lines of a car. Nice review. Enjoy!

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      05-25-2014, 12:07 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Exterminador View Post
Great write up! I'm really glad for you and the fact that this car has transformed your relationship with cars in general. BMWs have a way of doing that.

So much so that I ended up buying a 2nd one - lol
Now I just look for an excuse to drive
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      05-25-2014, 12:08 PM   #30

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Kerry Park no doubt..

Congrats on your revelation!
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      05-25-2014, 12:27 PM   #31
... can I get a 1M

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Originally Posted by utsavized View Post
To not make this yet another redundant review, I will first set the background: I fall under the bigger population of the non-enthusiast population that BMW is trying to please with this car. Oh, well, I could call myself an enthusiast on paper, which is where I live, breathe and dream cars, but have never had the money, or the good fortune of ever driving the true Ms and the Porsches, or even an EVO or an STI for that matter. And to make up for the lack of technical comparisons and all other review-y things, I will try to make this interesting by simply recounting my time with this car. Thanks in advance for reading.


If I had a dream garage, it would have two cars: an M3 and an Aston Martin DB9. Having lusted over the M3 for so many years, I really feel no shame in considering this my first M car. I know, I know… It is not a true M. But after years of school and hard work, I can finally afford something like this. And, I have paid close to 50 grand for it (and I still cannot afford an M3/M2), so for all intents and purposes, it is, for me, an M car. This means though, that BMW has hit the nail at the right place. The 2 series, in the general sense, fulfills this purpose – to give big smiles to people who have enough money and desire for a sporty car, but just not enough for a true M car. Bang! And that is why it has 18 M badges, to help me forget that I couldn’t get a real M car. Fine by me.

The most I have ever driven in a year is about 6000 miles. I thought of a car, as a utility that enabled me to do things – go to work, get groceries, so on and so forth. I never drove, just to drive. Not that I have an illustrious history of vehicle ownership (90 Celica, 01 Passat, 94 318i, 06 A4, 08 E92, 02 Passat), but no car has engendered that man-vehicle bond in me. Until now. I have driven over 1500 miles on this car in less than a month. That should speak volumes in itself. The M235i begs me to drive it…really! I park it in the garage and take a look back at those glorious headlights one more time. As the LEDs fade away, it whimpers, “Please, one more spin round the block?” And just like that, it turns into yet another occasion where I am late for dinner. On the bright side, I wake up before the alarm goes off, go to work hours early to avoid traffic and as a result get more done. Hell, I may even get a promotion because of this car, and finally be able to get the coveted M3. A car that helps me get a car. Now that is proper utility! Pretty cool!

I am no racer. I have never tracked, nor do I indulge in speed grudges on the streets. But there is something different that happens when you are inside this one. I cannot help but compare this car with my 1 year old German Shepherd – loyal and sweet but at the same time, 100 lbs. of pure mischief and that swag that oozes “I can get away with anything.” For some reason, it puts off other dogs – they want to urinate where my dog goes, cover up the tracks, and try to regain their territory. The M235i then, is just that – an intelligent, fun but raw puppy, but one that can still afflict a lot of damage. I am not sure if it is the good looks, or the plethora of M badges, but it ignites that same sense of territorial instinct from drivers of other fast cars on the road – they come close, lower a gear and make eye contact. They feel challenged, and this compelling need to regain their territory. Again, I am no racer, and not nearly as good a driver this car deserves, so I don’t indulge. But I know the numbers, both for the other car, and for this, and just knowing the fact I can smoke that car into the horizon of my rear view mirror with a light stomp on the accelerator, gives me a weirdly addictive high.

It does bother me that quality of the sound system is not that good. I like the bass of the kick drum that hits your chest, but not the bass of the bass guitar that rattles the whole car. Unfortunately, there is no way to fine tune the frequencies. It is a shame that my headphones have that capability and not this car. It also bothers me that I cannot skip random tracks with the wheel on steering, and that every time a track resumes when I start the car, the screen stops showing the currently playing track. There are also some cheap plastic bits here and there, and on the rare occasion that I do push the car to its limit, I have no way to tell if things are getting too hot. But none of it really matters! As, none of these contribute to the size of the smile I wear when I am inside this car.

I was a normal guy just going about my business. I think this car has turned me into a schizophrenic. I hear voices telling me to drive more. I am late at most places because I always take the longer route. I was concerned about the consequences initially, and whether I would be able to handle this sudden change. After a month though, I have figured it out -- the only way to live with this car is to really have a split-personality, exactly like the car itself does. You go to work, take your girlfriend to dinner, take your dog to play, and while doing so save on some gas as well in the forcibly timid Eco Pro mode, which makes the car a pure utility, one that is driven by a sensible adult. When you are done with all that though, you roll the windows down, press the “you know which” button thrice and unleash the other personality – the beast, the schizophrenic, the lunatic – as you drive away, tail-happy into the Pacific Northwest highways, lit up with pure joy, some burnt rubber and sweet exhaust noise.

At the end of the day, you get home, late for dinner yet again, and look back at it one last time. And as those stunning LEDs fade away, it whispers, “once more?”


Attachment 1032849
Great writeup. A reminder that the best car in the world is the one you work hard for and appreciate. And that an enthusiast is not one that can recite car technology and specifications, but someone that enjoys the drive
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      05-25-2014, 01:23 PM   #32

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Nice write up and Congratulations! Life is too short not to enjoy the ride.

Had a chance to experience the M235i at the BMW Performance Driving School three weeks ago. Very Impressive - Car just wants to GO!


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      05-25-2014, 01:56 PM   #33
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What a enlightening story, glad your making progress with your goals in a steady fashion. It brings me joy knowing others are enjoying themselves from what they believe in and make come true.
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      05-25-2014, 02:14 PM   #34
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Fantastic write-up, thanks for sharing!
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      05-25-2014, 02:41 PM   #35
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What a great write up, I am just over 5 weeks with the car and will give me two cents when I have some more time but just like you said, it makes you want to take the long way home and switch it from "comfort" to "sport" for the last couple of miles. Yes the radio sucks and the interior looks kind of cheap but when the pedal hits the floor, who really gives a S**t.
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      05-25-2014, 04:26 PM   #36
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Dealer in Seattle?

Great write-up!

Which dealer in Seattle did you purchase from?

Did you buy or lease? How did you go about the negotiations?

I am looking to buy a new 328i for 2015 and am considering how far below MSRP a person can get...thanks...
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      05-25-2014, 04:39 PM   #37
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Nice write up! Glad you like the car, and have sense enough to realize what a steal it is at its price.

Don't pay any attention to the 'real M' jokers on here. Most of them are no more than badge snobs, and couldn't tell the difference driving the cars without looking at the trunk/boot lid.
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      05-25-2014, 05:17 PM   #38

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Great review. This car is awesome. Who cares if you don't have a 'true' M as long as you are happy, that's coming from an M owner.
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      05-25-2014, 05:59 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by duk View Post
Great review. This car is awesome. Who cares if you don't have a 'true' M as long as you are happy, that's coming from an M owner.
Plus 1! The M235i is a great ride. Glad you are enjoying it.
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      05-25-2014, 06:39 PM   #40
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Thanks, that's was a fun read.
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      05-25-2014, 07:40 PM   #41

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Thanks for the review. I was planning to wait for the M235i when I stumbled upon a very low mileage 2011 335i at a great price, which I ended up getting. I'm glad you are enjoying - I'm loving my car. I think the combination that BMW has, in terms of handling, comfort, and performance, is hard to beat.

In terms of audio, I suggest you call Ken at MusicarNW for help with the sound system. He specializes in systems for BMW and has several different options based on your budget. I have seen his posts here and on other car audio forums for several years and he knows his stuff. Though I am not yet a customer of his, he was kind enough to email me quite a bit of information on the audio systems he sells. He is based in Portland so if you can drive down there, he can install and tune the system for you. Even otherwise, he will mail stuff out if you don't mind a little DIY.

Last edited by snaimpally; 05-25-2014 at 08:40 PM.
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      05-25-2014, 09:02 PM   #42

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Originally Posted by SPGdriver View Post
Great write-up!

Which dealer in Seattle did you purchase from?

Did you buy or lease? How did you go about the negotiations?

I am looking to buy a new 328i for 2015 and am considering how far below MSRP a person can get...thanks...
Have a look for a "deals" thread in the F30 forums. There are lots of them with good tips on how to get a good deal.
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      05-25-2014, 09:03 PM   #43
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Thank you for the review. I am so excited for you! I also have the Alpine White exterior that I love so much in my current BMW 128i and will be soon leasing the BMW 228i in Alpine White as I still love the color. Your post makes me want to take a long drive tomorrow! I am sure your car handles so well and is so much fun to drive. Congratulations! Enjoy!
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      05-25-2014, 09:11 PM   #44

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Yep you are the demographic BMW was after. I have to tell you that the M235i is no slouch! The car has a lot of power and handles really well so much so that it reminds me of earlier generation M Cars. I wish this car was around for me when I came out of college. Fast forward more than a few years and now i am finally moving into my first M car the F80 M3. I will enjoy it no doubt but I will never forget my first BMW (on my profile) which hooked me on the brand forever. I can feel your passion and dedication and have no doubt you will have a long relationship with Bavaria. Welcome to the club friend.
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