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NSX or E46 M3?

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Welp, this is a tough one. I thought I had my heart all set on a new E46 M3 for my next car (currently own a 96 BMW 318ti), but recently I had my attention grabbed by the Acura NSX. Ideally I'd love to own both, but it's gonna have to be either/or.

So what does everyone think? I'm sure alot of people will be biased towards the NSX here, but I wanted to hear as objective a comparison from people as possible. Would love to see a listing of what's good about each and which you think is the better choice in the end. Thanks.
 
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Are you able to keep a second daily driver? If not, I'd recommend the bimmer. Personally, I think a car like the NSX is tough to use as your primary car.

Performance wise, the 3.2L NSX (97+) has the edge over the E46 and has a very different feel. The E46 M3 is no slouch, though, and can definitely scratch the performance itch while still remaining low key enough to tool around in.

The NSX is obviously a lot more exotic, outrageously styled, and gets a lot more attention...

I've got a 98 NSX-T and an 01 330xi as my daily driver, btw.
 
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I don't know about the Bimmer, but the NSX makes you feel like a (rock, porn, fill in what you want) star.

The NSX looks, feels, drives like you wouldn't believe. On top of that, this is an extremely RARE car.

Having said all that, the NSX is only a 2 seater with very little room to spare. Take some time and test drive a NSX and decide what's better for you.
 
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I have been a bimmer guy for 8 years. A lot of my friends have E46 M3, and I have driven and played with it many times. It's a powerful car with torquey engine, and has many new technologies. However, once I drove NSX, E46 M3 seemed like a "normal" car.
smile.gif
I don't have NSX yet, but ever since I drove one, I set my eyes on it, and the endless search began. Take a full time to test drive both cars. You will only get the similar feeling of driving NSX from very few cars.
 
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IMO, the M3 and NSX are both excellent performance cars. But to me, the M3 is a complete visual bore compared with the NSX.

To me, the inside of the M3 feels and looks like a cheap economy car (including the 2002 model). It's body and color look "cool" for a brick-shaped BMW, but passe' compared with the exotic-looking NSX. The M3 is more practical, the NSX is more exotic! The M3 is ordinary, the NSX is uncommon. The M3 is a lopsided box, the NSX is a sleek wedge.

If you want a dramatic demonstration, just park the two cars side-by-side, stand back and have a gander! Wow! They're two completely different unrelated species! One is just a car, the other is just amazing!

So the decision should be easy. Either you want a cheap and ordinary looking, more practical performance car, or a sleek and unique exotic performance car.

------------------
NSXY
95 NSX-T, 5 sp, Red/Tan, Tubi exhaust, Dali street anti-sway bars, Dunlop SP9000s

[This message has been edited by NSXY (edited 22 March 2002).]
 
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If you are only going to have one car, then get the M3. If you already have a daily driver, then get the NSX.

I am major M Power fan. Few years ago I caught NSX fever while I had an E36 M3. Considered trading it for the NSX, but ultimately decided I was going to miss the M. So I kept the M3 and got the NSX.

Apparently the M3/NSX combo is fairly common among the NSX community. Many have both.


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'95 NSX-T: comptech exhaust, eibachs, bilsteins, WW front spoiler, 17/18 Work Wheels
'95 M3
'99 A4
 

Black&Tan97Tnewportbeach

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BMW's are like volkswagens in my neighborhood. I'd rather roll a skateboard - get more chix!
 
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There are way more M3's than Volkswagons in my neighborhood.

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NSXY
95 NSX-T, 5 sp, Red/Tan, Tubi exhaust, Dali street anti-sway bars, Dunlop SP9000s
 
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I love my NSX.
I will keep my NSX.
But my next car will be a E46 M3(Trading 98 328 convertible)

I think if you can only have one get the M3.
You won't be disappointed with it at all.
It is obviously heavier, but a sub 5 sec 0-60 is nothing to sneeze at. The vettes in your neighborhood will learn quickly.

I don't agree that the M3 is even close to being "ordinary" and "common".
 
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Originally posted by Black&Tan97Tnewportbeach:
BMW's are like volkswagens in my neighborhood. I'd rather roll a skateboard - get more chix!

If you're looking for "chix", you're better off in a Volkswagen - more specifically, a New Beetle with a flower in the bud vase and a golden retriever in the back seat.
 
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Ketzer,

For what is worth I'll give my 2 cents. I've got both an E46 M3 (6 speed Manual) as well as a 97 NSX-T.

Pluses on the M3:

Better Brakes than a stock 97+ NSX

Seating for 4 comfortably, quite roomy for
being such a small coupe..

Conservative Sytling, so you blend in with the crowd which is nice.

More affordable aftermarket parts available (Hamman, AC, Sprint, Dinnan, etc)

Handling is a bit better than the stock NSX, even with the built-in understeer, probably a function of the suspension and the wider tires.

SMGII for 2002
smile.gif


DSC can be defeated + Normal and Sport Mode..

Negatives on the M3:

Manual shifter really leaves quite a bit to be desired when compared with the NSX, it is notchy compared to the NSX .
(If you are already used to the 318ti, then you should be ok)

Car is quite a bit heavier than the NSX, close to 3450 pounds

Gas consumption is closer to 15MPG-16MPG the NSX will give you much better mileage

Car is way too tall, feels like driving a sedan instead of a sports coupe.

--------------------------------------------
Conclusion:

As some in the board have stated, if the car will be your daily driver and the only car then the M3 would be the better choice.

For the "fun" factor the NSX is a much better car than the M3..
 
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NSX will give the looks, fun, attention (if you want it), for a fraction of the price-I think so. as they do say "instant star status!"

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93RX7TT-(4sale for NSX!)
95 Legend LS Coupe
89 Mazda MPV-Daily Beater
 

Number9

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Originally posted by ChopsJazz:
Considering your Dinnan M3, that's a reasonable opinion.

Hi Fester, I think you're confusing Allan with me! (Though I share his impeccable good taste in cars and his opinion in this matter.) I vote M3 for only-car-daily-driver and NSX otherwise.

--twc

99 NSX-Z SC (360 RWHP)
95 Dinan M3 SC (290 RWHP)
95 BMW M3 (Bone Stock)

[This message has been edited by Number9 (edited 22 March 2002).]
 
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Originally posted by comptechnsx:
I don't agree that the M3 is even close to being "ordinary" and "common".

They are not "ordinary" and "common", but IMO they are "ordinary" and "common" LOOKING!



------------------
'91 Black/Black
 
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I guess I agree with the consensus, that if its a heavy use car, than the M3. The M3 is WAY more practical, and can easily be driven in changing climates (I see Ketzer is in NH). Sure the M3 is not nearly as exotic looking as an NSX, but what it does with such a (basically) utilitarian body is nothing short of remarkable.

As Far as NSXY Saying " To me, the inside of the M3 feels and looks like a cheap economy car (including the 2002 model)."
I say BS. The E46 interior is VER plush, and the quality of materials is as good as any german car ever.
"It's body and color look "cool" for a brick-shaped BMW, but passe' compared with the exotic-looking NSX."
I think he's a "BIT" off. What exactly do you mean by "body and color" it comes in (as of 2002) any color BMW produces for any car! do they all look "cool for a brick-shaped..."

"The M3 is ordinary, the NSX is uncommon. The M3 is a lopsided box, the NSX is a sleek wedge."
The M3 is far from "ordinary", and the E46 has great muscular lines (Body specific to the M, like the E30, UNLIKE the E36). It's technology rivals (thats rivals people, not beats) that of the NSX at it's time.

The NSX IS a fabulous car, and for the price of a very nice 91, there is NO car that compares. NOT EVEN CLOSE.
However, the E46 M3 is hands down a better car for frequent use in all but the nicest climates, and by all but the most single and large equipment hobbyless person.
Attention from your car can be a good thing, and can often be a bad thing.

Ultimately, Ketzer, you need to make the call, But this I can tell you for sure, owning an NSX, and a 02 M3 SMG sure seems like the cats meow to me!!! :p

------------------
Steve
91 NSX
01 MDX
02 M3 SMG (It's heeeerrreee)

[This message has been edited by SJJ28 (edited 22 March 2002).]
 
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Steve,

That's a nice lineup you've got there... Once the 330xi is paid off, I have to get myself some kind of SUV for hauling crap around.

The funny thing about having a decent BMW as a daily driver is that you almost need another "daily driver" for errands.

It would be nice to have a truck to take to malls, supermarkets, etc. Even in the BMW I wind up parking 100's of miles from the entrance
biggrin.gif
 
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Originally posted by spookyp:
Steve,

That's a nice lineup you've got there... ...I have to get myself some kind of SUV for hauling crap around.

The funny thing about having a decent BMW as a daily driver is that you almost need another "daily driver" for errands.


The MDX is really "Wifeys" Car.
As far as the "need another "daily driver" for errands" thing goes, My stance on that has done a complete 180 in the last year.
I had always dreamed of having a Lambo, or new Ferrari, but I've since decided it is much MUCH nicer to drive the nicest car you have (usually the most expensive) on a daily basis. Then, instead of a $100k plus garage queen, you could (assuming your of the means to get a $100k plus car) get 4 or five truly classic cars, that are GREAT to look at, and fun to drive on occasion, but that would grow tiresome if driven often, or daily.

For instance, I'd MUCH rather have:
a mint 1973 BMW 2002
a nice 1964 or 65 Porsche 356 coupe
a nice 1971 MBenz 280SL
and a 1971 Pantera
Total of ~$120k

Rather than a 2001 360 coupe. (Which I absolutely LOVE!!) ~$160up

Call me what you will, but Id rather have a collection, than one pc. (Just dont offer me 8 Pennys for 1 Dime!!!)

Steve.
"spoiled by the cars I'm around every day!!!! http://www.thelastdetail.com/



[This message has been edited by SJJ28 (edited 22 March 2002).]
 

ck

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Originally posted by Number9:
Hi Fester, I think you're confusing Allan with me! (Though I share his impeccable good taste in cars and his opinion in this matter.) I vote M3 for only-car-daily-driver and NSX otherwise.

--twc

99 NSX-Z SC (360 RWHP)
95 Dinan M3 SC (290 RWHP)
95 BMW M3 (Bone Stock)

[This message has been edited by Number9 (edited 22 March 2002).]

hey Number9,

just wondering...Why do you have two 95 M3's?

Chris
 

Number9

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Originally posted by ck:
hey Number9,

just wondering...Why do you have two 95 M3's?

Chris

Bought the stocker for the wife, but I liked it so much that when Steve Dinan happened to put his up for sale (he's local), I couldn't resist.
 
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Some of you may have seen my cross post of the same question in the DTM Power forums (if not, you're not missing anything };-) ), however, currently I own a 96 BMW 318ti as my primary/daily driver. Whichever car I end up choosing, I will probably keep the ti as my winter and/or more practical car. Thanks to all for posting their thoughts. It was much more insightful, helpful, and mature than the responses I got over on DTM Power. Please feel free to continue posting up any other info or considerations. Thanks again.
 
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You'd think I'd read my own post as carefully as everyone else's...I hope it's clear to everyone now what I drive currently. };-) Sorry about that.
 
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