Mileage: 85,000 Miles
Engine: M54B30 3.0-Liter Inline 6-Cylinder Engine
Transmission: 5-Speed Automatic Transmission
Exterior color: Topaz Blue Metallic (364)
Interior: Sand Beige Leather Interior (N6SN)
Myrtle Wood Interior Trim
Leather Sport Steering Wheel
Power Memory Sport Seats (10-Way Adjustable)
M Aerodynamics Package
Power Glass Moonroof
Power Lumbar Support (4-Way)
Rain-Sensing Windshield Wipers
Automatic Climate Control
Auto-Dimming Rearview Mirror
Heated Front Seats
Split Fold-Down Rear Seats
Staggered M Double Spoke Style 68 17” Wheels
Michelin Pilot Sport A/S Plus Tires
BMW Carpet Floor Mats
100% Stock and Unmolested
The BMW E46 generation 3 Series is what many BMW-philes consider to be the last of the true driver’s 3 Series. The E46 occurred near the end of the sweet spot of BMW’s technological evolution, where power, weight, size, and simplicity all wonderfully intersected. It was the last 3 Series before BMW shifted from a driver-focused brand to a technology-focused brand. It came from an era where a base-model 3 Series could satisfy the discerning tastes of the driving enthusiast and was the first 3 Series since the E30 offered with all-wheel drive. Yet, the E46 offers plenty of amenities (subtle lighting illuminating the center console from above is my favorite). The sport package’s 3-spoke steering wheel, bolstered seats, suspension, and Style 68 M Double Spoke wheels add purpose. The E46 was so good that most had the wheels driven off of them, making low mileage examples hard to find. Many examples have depreciated into the price point of entry-level buyers and neglect. Clean, low mileage, well cared for examples are rare—very rare.
I purchased this 2001 Topaz Blue over Sand Beige leather BMW 330Ci from a collector as part of a bundle of 1990s and 2000s BMWs. It was originally delivered in July of 2001 to Schomp BMW in Littleton, Colorado then transferred and sold through Gebhardt BMW in Boulder, Colorado. The Carfax shows it remaining with this owner for next twelve years, and being regularly dealer serviced at both Gebhardt and Schomp BMW. The previous owner purchased it for his wife in 2013, but she rarely drove it. He registered it to Montana, but it rarely left his warehouse in Colorado. It is optioned with the Sport and Premium Packages, in addition to heated seats (independent of the Cold Weather Package, meaning no headlight washers to break), Xenon headlights, and fold down rear seats. In preparation for sale we gave it a complete inspection and a full round of routine and preventative E46 maintenance including a complete cooling system overhaul. The list includes: the battery, serpentine belt, idler pulleys and tensioner, air conditioner belt, idler pulleys and tensioner, water pump, expansion tank, expansion tank cap, radiator, cooling hoses, thermostat, thermostat housing, coolant temp sensor, coolant flush, front brake pads and rotors, brake fluid flush, air conditioning recharge, and a fresh oil change. We also had both front airbags replaced by BMW under recall. The result is an excellent 330Ci. Topaz Blue is a captivating color and this example is in amazing condition against a population where the majority of E46s have fallen into neglect and disrepair. The Carfax is clean and all panels are original. It is 100% stock and unmolested and ready to be enjoyed by its new owner.
The Topaz Blue paint is in very good condition; it has no glaring chips, nicks, peeling clear coat or other defects. The leading edges of the hood, fenders, and bumper covers are protected by clear bra. Underneath the clear bra are some small visible paint chips. The VIN tag is in place, the Carfax is clean, and it has never been in accident. All trim is present and in good condition and the silver front valance trim looks awesome against the Topaz blue. The headlights, fog lights, marker lights, and taillight lenses are clear and crack-free; the headlights and fog lights do have some pitting. The windshield has no cracks, but it does have moderate pitting. The plastic cowling below it is also cracked but still functional. The side and rear windows are perfectly clear. The Style 68 wheels are in very good shape; they do have some brake dust discoloration and minor curb rash—the worst being on the rear wheels. The Michelin Pilot Sport Plus tires have over 60% tread remaining, the Style 68 wheels are staggered but the tire sizes are square which reduces understeer and allows them to be dismounted and rotated if desired (I do the same thing on my M5).
The Sand Leather and Myrtle Wood interior is also in excellent condition. The Myrtle Wood trim is not littered with hairline cracks that are typical of E46s, but there is one small one in the driver’s door trim. There are also some shoe rubber marks on the lower driver’s door card and doorsill. There are no odors and it has never been smoked in. The carpets are clean, but the BMW carpeted driver side floor mat does have some discoloration. The steering wheel leather is very nice, but there is a small area of pulled stitching at the ten o’clock position. The seat leather has no tears, failed stitching, or bolster wear. All power seat motors, memory switches, and seat heaters work. The instrument cluster, stereo, and HVAC displays have no failed pixels. There are no warning lights on and no system check messages. The BMW Business stereo and Harmon Kardon Premium Sound system sounds fantastic. The HVAC panel functions correctly, the heat blows warm and the air conditioning blows cold thanks to being recently recharged. The heater blower is quiet and the final stage resistor functions correctly at all fan speeds. The ashtray compartment forward of the shifter does not have the typical scratches that most E46s go. All power door locks, the sunroof and windows work exactly as they should. The sunroof shade is correctly on its tracks. The trunk carpet has no wear or stains. The tool kit, factory jack, and spare tire are present and in good condition. All owners’ manuals are present, along with one key.
Proper maintenance is important with any BMW, and this example’s previous owners have clearly properly maintained it. We reset the clock on common preventative and routine E46 maintenance, as outlined in the summary paragraph. As it sits, this is a turn-key 330Ci with no common E46 issues. The M54B30 engine fires on command, idles smoothly, and pulls strongly to redline. It doesn’t spot or leak. The transmission shifts smoothly, does not slip, and throws no codes. There is no driveshaft, differential, or wheel bearing vibration or noise. The suspension is compliant, the bushings are healthy, and there are no clunks or rattles. The brakes are firm and it passes emissions with no problems, which we pay for in the State of Colorado. It will certainly need continued care and maintenance, and it deserves it, but that should not be for some time.