After experiencing a fair amount of car trouble between the two of us, mine with a 2001 Olds Alero and Tracy with a 2000 BMW 328i, we decided it was time for a headache free change. Both of us have had too many problems to count and we were looking at over $5000 to get her BMW operating properly and mine had major repairs pending as well as every bit of maintenance you can think of doing. With over 74,000 miles on my Alero, he was getting a little long in the tooth. Tracy's had more than 65,000 miles on it. For us the only question became, do we spend a great deal of money on repairs, or look to replacing them.
For Tracy it was an easy decision and the make and model was already pre-determined for her, 2006 BMW 3 Series. I can't say that I was too troubled by the decision; but my only sticking point was a monthly price-point. A threshold of pain that we couldn't cross. Even then we both knew that there would be short-term sacrifices. She agreed with me and immediately began checking into what could be done with what we had to offer, which honestly, didn't seem enough to me.
I've only bought a few cars in my life, and only my Alero was a new car. When I bought that car I thought the salesman, now passed away, did a fine job of putting me into the car I wanted at a price I could afford and didn't try and sell me on a ton of extras or other things I didn't need. A good salesmen figures out your limits quickly and doesn't press harder or further than he thinks you will go. Mark was an excellent salesman and figured out quickly what we wanted. We told him where we wanted to be price wise and he made sure we stayed within the limits we set for him. He took great care of us and I can't help but recommend him to anyone looking to buy a car; well looking to buy a BMW anyway. The BMW sales experience was everything I have heard it is cracked up to be and more so. Sales is all about people, and while it really isn't a job I would want to do it's a job I can think highly of when it is done as well as was handled by Mark.
So today Tracy and I both have 325is and Tracy is just beside herself with joy. Call it a slightly early wedding gift. Tracy chose Red with beige interior, looks great. I took the Silver with black interior. Mine was a demo, so it had about 1100 miles on it (not even broken in yet), which helped bring down the price a bit. Tracy's was brand new off the lot. It still has that famed, New Car Smell. Both were given complete details and a full take of gas, but I would have expected nothing less. Making the ride out, all the better, dad was there to share in the experience.
They are very quiet, although not as quiet as a 5 series or some other luxury cars; but the drive is what the 3 series is all about and they drive great. They come with a decent list of perks, like Bluetooth phone support. They also have an auxiliary jack for an MP3 player, so our iPods are right at home and I don't have to listen to crappy radio. The windows aren't tinted, which we may see about doing and later this year the iPod gets the full BMW treatment and from all accounts the 3 Series isn't being left out. What we have is great, that would make it even better.