Posts Tagged ‘options’

Year Makes All the Difference

May 4th, 2010 2 comments

In the four short years of BMW M Coupe production, there were essentially 3 different versions produced (6 if you count right hand drive and differentiate the European S54).  The first and most common is the North American S52-engined car.  Produced in 1999 and 2000, these cars produce 240hp and 236 lb/ft of torque.  This is the same engine as found in North American versions of the 1996-1999 E36 M3.   Europeans – as they did with their version of the E36 M3 – were offered the 321hp, 258 lb/ft S50 engine.  For 2001 and 2002, both North America and Europe received the 315hp S54 engine from the 2001-2006 E46 M3.

Model Year 2000

While the drivetrain carried over to the model year 2000 cars, a number of other changes were made beginning in cars produced after April 1999.  These include:

Exterior Color Changes

  • Discontinued
    • Arctic Silver Metallic
    • Boston Green Metallic
  • Added
    • Titanium Silver Metallic
    • Oxford Green II Metallic

Other Changes

  • Chrome slats added to front kidney grilles
  • Chrome surrounds added to headlights
  • Fuel door added to central locking system
  • Airbags upgraded to two-stage
  • Smaller chrome trimmed mirror with auto-dimming function added
  • “Coupe” detail removed from door sill (“M” remained)

Model Year 2001

The 2001 model year (cars produced after February 2001) brought the new S54 engine as mentioned above as well as an additional round of upgrades. These include:

Exterior Color Changes

  • Discontinued:
    • Evergreen
    • Dakar Yellow II
    • Cosmos Black Metallic
  • Added
    • Laguna Seca Blue
    • Phoenix Yellow Metallic
    • Steel Gray Metallic
    • Black Sapphire Metallic

Interior Color Changes

  • Discontinued:
    • Evergreen and Black Nappa Leather
    • Kyalami Orange and Black Nappa Leather
  • Added:
    • Laguna Seca Blue and Black Nappa Leather
    • Kiwi and Black Nappa Leather (never officially offered in North America)

Other Changes

  • 3.15:1 differential replaces 3.23:1
  • Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) replaces Automatic Stability Control plus Traction (ASC+T)
  • Tire pressure monitoring system added
  • Gray faced gauges replace black
  • Exterior “M” badges now curved rather than flat
  • Chrome shadow finish for the RoadStar wheels replaces satin chrome finish

Model Year 2002

  • In-dash CD player becomes standard in place of now optional cassette player

Chrome on the headlight pull knob, interior door pulls, and door lock buttons seemed to come and go at random throughout the model run.  It is not indicative of model year. (Thanks Josh)

Do I Want a Sunroof?

April 30th, 2010 3 comments

The BMW M Coupe may be one of the few cars where you may not want a sunroof.  Sunroofs came standard on the M Coupe with the option being a “sunroof-delete”.  Very few dealers ordering for their lots wanted to de-content their cars, so very few have this rare “option”.  It’s been reported that only 16% of coupes are sunroof-deletes (452 of 2858 to be exact).

BMW M Coupe Sunroof-Delete

Glenn's Sunroof-Delete Coupe at Red Rocks

Why Wouldn’t I?

First of all rarity.  M Coupes are rare cars to begin with, but if you’re one of the few and proud to own a sunroof-delete, you truly have something special.

Second, the M Coupe was designed to be raced.  Having a heavy glass panel on your roof raises the car’s center of gravity and takes away some structural rigidity.  So if you plan to track or autocross your coupe or if you want your coupe to be more in tune with the intentions of it’s original design, go sunroof-delete.

Third, the sunroof of the M Coupe only tilts, it does not open.  It seems almost an afterthought by the designer (see #2 above).

Fourth, the roof of a sunroof-delete coupe looks more clean.

Why Would I?

First, you dont’ like paying more for less.  There seems to be a price premium on sunroof-delete coupes, and if not in price, they seem to sell faster.  Many people don’t like paying more to not have something they typically have to pay more to have.

Second, you like the open-air feeling in the interior.

Third, you like fitting in.

Last, there is actually a little more headroom, especially when the sunroof is tilted.  This could be critical for taller people who need to fit a helmet at the track. (thanks Chuck)

Personally, I think I’m neutral on the issue.  I don’t think it’s a make it or break it issue in my own car purchase.  I typically love having sunroofs in my cars.  The reasons above are what evens things out.  There’s something about having a car in a configuration you know there are less than 5 of.