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      10-15-2016, 10:39 PM   #1
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Drives: Freya - 2018 MGM M4
Join Date: May 2006
Location: SoCal

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2017 230i EUROPEAN DELIVERY BLITZ: 92 hours, 9 countries, 2000 kms, Nürburgring!

So, what follows is what I am calling my European Delivery blitz! The car is a 2017 230i, details below. The trip occurred basically Friday, October 7 to Saturday, October 15. 7 nights in total. This trip started as a trip to Spain that I had booked. Conveniently, I have one of the Audi Diesel Scandal cars and am going to be getting a bunch of money when I give that car up right around the time the BMW will arrive in the states. Long story short, the Spain tour was cancelled in general, car ordered and Spain became a pit stop en route to Munich, mainly so I could see a bullfight. This was a solo trip due to planning issues and the fact that those invited just weren’t able to make it. I had the car for a mere 92 hours and did 9 countries and about 2001 km! Below are key highlights first, then day by day and pics. Bear with me…I am figuring out the pic posting as I go.

Teaser Pics to Start:

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RING TEASERS! Taken at Wehrseifen section of track.

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The Route:

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Spain (pre-delivery)

Mountain Passes/Famous Roads:

Reschen/Resia Pass
Fuorn/Ofen Pass
Flüela Pass
Black Forest Road
Autobahn – multiple (highest speed achieved – limiter/160 mph twice, 157 mph downhill per GPS once)

Overnight Stays:
Madrid, ES (pre-car)
Pfunds, Tirol, AT
Lucerne, CH
Nurburg, DE
Cologne, DE
Frankfurt, DE (post-car)

Cultural/fun experiences/visits:

Flamenco show
BMW Welt delivery (yes)
Autobahn (naturally)
Nürburgring (most definitely)
Paragliding over Davos
The Ardennes
Battle of Waterloo site
Cologne Cathedral
Rhine River Tour


2017 230i Coupe
Sparkling Brown
Oyster Sensatec
Track Handling Pack
Cold Weather Pack
Lighting Pack

Sticker at order $38,295
Sticker at Purchase $38,745 (BMW price adjustment August 1)
Price before incentives: $35,090
Price after BMW incentive for September: $34,090

All prices before TTL

Ordered: July 6
Delivery Date: October 10, BMW Welt, Munich
ED Drop Off Date: October 14, BLG Logistics, Frankfurt


So, to the day by day:

Last edited by F82PRETEND; 12-08-2016 at 02:59 PM..
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      10-15-2016, 10:40 PM   #2
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Days 1-3; PRE-CAR

Friday, October 7:

Depart LAX for MAD (Madrid). Priority pass means nice lounges the world around! Great sunset leaving LA.

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Saturday, October 8:

Arrive MAD. Vigo and Portugal out the window flying in. Spain looks a lot like Southern California from the sky. Evening Flamenco show and dinner. Both nights in Madrid are Hotel Emperador on Gran Via…very nice hotel in good location.

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Flamenco at Corral de la Moreria...a trip advisor top rated place, also mentioned in "1000 Places to See Before You Die" A great cultural experience and good food too!

Sunday, October 9:

Morning: walking tour of Madrid, Royal Palace and Prado museum. Evening: bullfight at Las Ventas. Definitely interesting, probably wouldn’t go again. One of the 3 matadors was great and had his bull down in one shot. This other guy had to drive the sword in to the bull several times and was clearly missing. That wasn’t fun. I left after 4 of 6 bulls.

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Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-27-2016 at 11:12 PM..
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      10-15-2016, 10:49 PM   #3
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Join Date: May 2006
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Delivery Day!

Monday, October 10:

FINALLY, today is THE DAY. Early morning flight to Munich.

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Arrival and driver is waiting for me with brand new 7 series. What a car that is! Drives directly to the Welt.

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I am about 3 hours early and though I was told there were no plant tours available via email, when I got there one was starting so I got to have some delicious lunch from the lounge and then head over to the tour.

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Met a couple other Americans who had taken delivery. One lady had picked up a 430i convertible the week before and did a Swiss tour with her nephew and the other guy and his buds had just picked up a new Alpina B7. Tour of plant was incredible, and took my mind off the final couple hours of waiting.

Tour is over and it’s finally time! My specialist, Rudolph, is waiting for me so I gather my stuff we head to the stairs. Of course I peek over the side!!

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I ordered this car really wanting the sparkling brown, but having never seen it on a 2 before! I knew it would look amazing and was beyond excited and relieved to see just how great it looked!!!

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Rudolph does a fast but thorough briefing. I take tons of pics. He sticks on toll and emissions stickers and I hook up portable GPS and it’s time to take a victory lap and head out into the wild!


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Heading out!!!

Then I stop for a couple pics outside…the front of the Welt had all sorts of construction going on so we had to make a compromise on picture location. Worked out okay.

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Car handles very well on the Autobahn and in the mountain roads. I try to take it super easy and only hit 120 mph briefly. Then it was time to head for Austria, over the Fern Pass, and on to the tiny town of Pfunds (established circa 1282) near the Italian and Swiss borders where I’d spend night 1 at a wonderful little B&B Hotel Gasthof Traube.

For those who don’t know, this is basically on the road to the Stelvio Pass.

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Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-27-2016 at 11:25 PM..
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      10-15-2016, 11:02 PM   #4
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First Full Driving Day!

Tuesday, October 11:

Unfortunately, due to snow, the Stelvio pass was “gesperrt” or closed! It was okay because I had planned on it being closed and have already done it in a rented 4 series convertible. So, I head on the alternate route and go into Italy for a Cappuccino pit stop before heading on to Switzerland via the Fuorn Pass through the Swiss National Park/Forest.

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It is an absolutely stunning drive. It is faster, and in a sense, more enjoyable than the Stelvio.

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I get to the turn off for Flüela and up we go into the snow. I was a tad concerned with the PSS tires, but the road was open and clear. You can see from the pics that, at the top, it’s not just a dusting!

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The Flüela drops into Davos and the sun was shining so I got to see another dimension of the brown! It was also time for an activity. Paragliding over Davos, to be precise. This was a great way to stretch the legs (short hike was involved) and break up the first long driving day.

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The car can be seen in this picture...2 rows to the right of the cable, last car toward the mountain, puddle behind it!

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After paragliding, I head down towards Klosters and on to Balzers, Liechtenstein. I called ahead to make sure the car could go to Liechtenstein, as it used to be a listed country but is no longer listed in the written materials. The BMW ED roadside assistance guy on the phone said it would be fine. This was great, because the drive into Liechtenstein from the southeastern end was stunning. Small roads, tiny villages, near-ancient Swiss military outpost (still manned, of course), etc. I had a quick coffee and croissant in Balzers and then fueled up for the first time!

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Then it was off to Lucerne for night 2. Night 2 was at the Hotel Ameron Flora in Lucerne and it was a nice hotel.

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Lucerne was incredibly beautiful and I wish I had more time there.

Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-28-2016 at 09:47 PM..
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      10-15-2016, 11:26 PM   #5

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Great trip report!
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      10-15-2016, 11:32 PM   #6
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Nürburgring Day!!!

Wednesday, October 12:

Today is Nurburgring day!!! I’m up early and on the road out of Switzerland. Once we hit the German border, it’s like a Star Wars hyper drive moment…light speed!!! Today is the first time we break 150 mph. We get to 152 on the GPS and about 158 on the speedo. Before Nürburg, I head over to the Black Forest Road via the gorgeous little town of Oppenau.

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The Black Forest Road is also stunning. Quick coffee stop at the Mummelsee.

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The only car that passes me on any of the mountain roads was this Audi was MOVING!

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I head down into Baden-Baden and over the Rhine into France (mainly so we pick up France for the car).

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Cross back into Germany and onto Nürburg. Here I saw a Volvo also on ED!

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The main autobahn exit is closed, so the alternative takes me through picturesque German countryside. Then I end up behind a Porsche carrier…we know where he’s going!

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Seeing the Ring for the first time.

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At the Ring, I scheduled a private instructor in my car for 149 EUR for the 4 laps. I bought the lap card and paid the instructor with cash. Arranged through RICHARD JORDAN of…he was super cool and extremely helpful throughout! Provided me with safety briefing and helmet.

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I had really NO TRACK TIME going into this, so I tell them my goal is to go around safely and maybe have a little fun. My instructor, Andy Carlile (more on that later) is phenomenal. Guides my through the first time to get a feel for me and the car and conditions. Superb in every way. We progressively dial it up with a break after lap 2. I was happy to hear he thought I did all right for a guy with no track time. Good with throttle control but need to learn to be more aggressive with the brakes! He estimated I was going around at about a 10:30 pace and that I did the Karussell at about “as fast as it (my car) would stick.” I thought that was GREAT!

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After it was over, and it went by so fast, I mentioned I’d have loved to do a taxi. Andy said, well I could take you round. He said he would take it relatively easy because the car was new and wet and that he'd go just a little quicker than I did so I could see what it would be like if I practiced. Because I distinctly my check-in specialist saying it "would be no problem" if someone else drove the car, I hesitated for about a second and was like, yea let’s do it! So I handed over the keys of my brand new car to a Nurburgring pro and let him have a go.

This was a real treat…insane. He estimated we were a bit over 9 minutes with him at the helm and it was intense and fun and incredible and at the same time he said he was taking it easy - he did the outside of the Karussell and slow!!! I realized after I should have done one consecutive video instead of just bits!!

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video 1 of 2:

Video 2 of 2:

Unfortunately, I think I missed the photo guy that day…but I do have webcam images of me coming off and Andy going on.

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I ask Andy what his fastest time is and he says just about 7 minutes on his bike YZF-R1 I’m like wow, OMG! So of course later that night I go to the wiki page for the Ring and there he is, Andy Carlile,, the fastest guy round on a bike. And I let him drive my car!!!

At Andy’s recommendation, I ate at the Pistenklause. Food was great, steak am stein…can’t go wrong there!!! I ask if Jeremy Clarkson signed the wall anywhere and the owner says, no, just drank!!! Overnight was at Hotel Zur Burg, which had some issues with my booking but they had open rooms so they let me in. It’s a pretty basic hotel…Nürburg is all about one thing...and it ain’t the hotel!

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Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-28-2016 at 11:31 PM..
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      10-15-2016, 11:40 PM   #7
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BeNeLux Time!!!

Thursday, October 13:

Today I’m up early again for a 3 country blitz. BeNeLux time. First up is Luxembourg and really just a quick photo op off the autobahn in a beautiful little town called Grevenmacher.

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Then on to Belgium...and into the northern tip of the Ardennes before a mid-day historical break at the site of the Battle of Waterloo.

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The Battle site is a fascinating place and it was my "historical significance" stop for this trip. Decent lunch too.

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Then it’s back in the car for the drive to Cologne, Germany by way of the Netherlands where I get off for fuel (only fuel stop I forgot to get a photo of) and a quick coffee from McDonalds!!

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Driving into Cologne is super cool because I can see the cathedral from the autobahn way outside the city. Cologne is great place and I just spend some time wandering for a few hours until it’s time to have dinner and beer with a part-German childhood buddy. We go to the Früh brewery and the beer and food are phenomenal! And cheap too!! Hotel in Cologne was the CityClass Hotel Europa Am Dom and was right next to the cathedral…in fact my parking garage elevator literally popped up right next to the cathedral…I was parked under it! Next to a Mojave/Havana (I think) 4 series!

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Früh brewery...good stuff!

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Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-28-2016 at 09:16 PM..
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      10-15-2016, 11:51 PM   #8
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Drop Off Day

Friday, October 14:

Today will be a sad day…drop off time! It’s an autobahn trip down to Frankfurt for car wash and drop off. Sunrise was cool!

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The highlight is that I hit 150+ 3 times and the limiter twice. You can feel the car bumping up against the limiter…it’s really cool. I was also behind an Audi A5 and he was charging it too…until we hit traffic! But, before we did, I managed to get to a slight downhill stretch of straight where the GPS read 157 mph!!! INSANE! Things really move at that speed! The fuel really goes too!

Anyway, I arrive safely in Frankfurt and get the car washed down the street from the BLG drop off at the Mr. Wash shop. This place is a real example of German efficiency…everything is automated and it does a pretty good job. Then you get to pull in and finish the drying and they have compressed air guns to hit the gaps with…that was super cool!!! Lot’s of pictures mainly because I wanted you all to see what the BLG drop off looks like…since google street view was terrible and I had little reference, so wanted to share! Notice the stablemates!!! Both were headed to USA...the M is a military car and the white is clearly another ED!!!

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Then it was an afternoon in Frankfurt and an interesting Rhine River tour with a cheesy dinner and wine tasting…oh well, I needed something to do and the Heidelberg tour wasn't available. Of course, I couldn't resist a Chipotle lunch in Germany!!! By this time I needed something from home!

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A GMC Sierra doing some heavy lifting!

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Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-28-2016 at 08:43 PM..
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      10-15-2016, 11:53 PM   #9
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Saturday, October 15

And, it’s time to come home!!! 6-8 weeks until I get the car back. Will try to get professional ring pics and a few videos loaded for all of you!

Enjoy! Feel free to post questions!

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New LA Rams stadium site!!!

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Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-28-2016 at 09:17 AM..
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      10-16-2016, 08:32 AM   #10
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Great writeup!!! Some of those locations looked very familiar. Thanks for posting.
2016 M235i BSM, M/T, Sunroof Delete
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      10-16-2016, 08:49 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by RacerDad View Post
Great writeup!!! Some of those locations looked very familiar. Thanks for posting.'s funny because I had already started planning my trip when you did yours and so I liked some of the overlap and guidance!
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      10-16-2016, 10:16 AM   #12
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Some Final Thoughts

This is BY FAR, the BEST thing any BMW guy/girl can do. I can't even begin describe how satisfying the whole experience was. I got exactly what I wanted and got to drive it in Europe. The order and delivery process was so easy and so not stressful...easier than finding and buying a car in inventory, to be honest.

Some recommendations. See as much as you can with a caveat...If you've never done driving in Europe, or some other foreign country, I wouldn't recommend the "BLITZ" type trip I did. I found it to be absolutely great. But I had been to some of the places and had a general idea of where I was going and am quite familiar with driving in Europe. Because I was short on time...I blitzed! If you are comfortable with that, it's great! Another great idea is to break up the day like I did. Whether it's a long lunch, or a museum, historical site or some other fun activity (paragliding), getting out of the car for a couple hours mid-day is a great idea.

The car, oh the car. I can't believe I've been away from BMW for 4 years. I love these things so much. And, if you're not a first time BMW driver, it's great to pick up a new one and it's basically just like the last one you had, so you don't have to "figure out" the car while lost in the middle of Europe. I don't know why, but I think there's just something about these cars. The Cayman I had was great, but it just didn't make me smile like the little BMW coupes do.

The color sparkling brown gets absolutely no respect. I ordered it having not seen it on a 2 in person, and god am I glad I took that risk. It's absolutely stunning.

The little 4 is an incredible engine. Fast, smooth delivery and super responsive. Goes right up to 130 or so before it has to work a little harder and even then it had no problem getting to and holding the limiter. Fuel economy is also great, overall. I was just over 27.2 MPG in 1243 miles, and that was including several top speed runs and 5 Nurburgring laps where the fuel drained like a flood.

The biggest thing...just have fun. Over prepare so your ready, but have fun!

Parting image:

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Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-28-2016 at 09:15 AM..
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      10-16-2016, 11:04 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by g_ride View Post
Great trip report!
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      10-16-2016, 03:18 PM   #14
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Incredible trip!! Awesome built and color! I like the 230i with THP better that the M version!

Last edited by rams; 10-16-2016 at 03:31 PM..
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      10-16-2016, 04:23 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by rams View Post
Incredible trip!! Awesome built and color! I like the 230i with THP better that the M version!
Thanks and I actually like it better too! I had lots of internal struggle on no M pack, but I love the blend of lux/sport with the chrome trim and the rich, very happy!

Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-16-2016 at 06:57 PM..
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      10-16-2016, 04:27 PM   #16
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Nurburgring Photos!

First of the ring shots have been found online! First two are of me driving laps 3 and 4, and were taken precisely 11:50 apart, including the slow down after gantry, leaving track, re-entering and accelerating to bridge...makes me think Andy's estimate of 10:30 lap is about spot on...of course he would know, he's done it 1600+ times!

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Last one is of Andy driving!

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Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-28-2016 at 09:14 AM..
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      10-18-2016, 08:00 AM   #17
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Just got an email from BLG logistics...Car is at the port in Bremerhaven and going to be loaded on MS Patriot for December 1st arrival at Port Hueneme!!!
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      10-18-2016, 07:51 PM   #18
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More Nurburgring Pics!

All pro photos were taken at Wehrseifen section of the track. This was on first moving over to let someone by...

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But I got the suspension working as we went on!!! I also love the way these two pics capture the car's lines

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Last edited by F82PRETEND; 12-08-2016 at 03:02 PM..
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      10-24-2016, 08:46 PM   #19
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The German tax/registration bill everyone has been referring to...I think:

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Some folks seem to think it's a receipt, but it clearly looks like a bill...has bank wiring instructions. I am assuming BMW pays it on my behalf?

Last edited by F82PRETEND; 10-28-2016 at 09:11 AM..
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      11-02-2016, 08:18 PM   #20
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We've got a boat!

On the Tirranna. Departing Sunday, arriving December 1! Here's to calm seas!

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Update! We've been loaded and boat has departed!

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Last edited by F82PRETEND; 11-06-2016 at 01:43 PM..
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      11-13-2016, 02:17 PM   #21
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Passing through the Azores!!


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      11-19-2016, 02:38 PM   #22
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Caribbean Today!

Tirranna is entering the Caribbean!

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