Wednesday, August 26, 2009

BMW Mobility Kit

After the day a nail reminded me how vulnerable the Run Flat Tyre is I made a few research into drivers who changed to normal tyres. Most proclaimed how wonderful normal tyres are compared to the dreaded RTF. The top recommended tyre was the Michelin ps2. But since it's not a run flat tyre and our cars don't carry an extra tyre, the The BMW M3 mobility kit is probably the best thing to have. The M3 by the way runs on 19" and since the RTF don't have the technology to runanything thinner than 18", BMW resorted to normal low profile tyres. The M3 mobility kit comes with a portable compressor, tire sealant and a specially designed nylon carrying case, the Mobility Kit can help keep you moving if a flat tire comes along. Just plug the compressor into your BMW’s electronic socket to bring an air supply within reach. The gloves looks kinda out of place but useful in an emergency.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Neep for speed - Tommy Milner Driver GT2 M3

Here's a an awesome video of the BMW M3 GT2 racer featuring Tommy Milner. Great shots of the barebone race version of the m3. Makes you want to jump in and race.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Don't like the colour? vinyl it

Vinyl is catching on to give car paint manufacturers a run for their money. I have seen celcom suvs on the road with this technology. Pretty soon we can change colours of our cars like clothes. White today, black tomorrow. Here are some pics of enthusiast trying out the vinyl.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Why not a 2006 Porsche Boxster or a Ferrari 355

I've been asked many times by friends why wouldn't I consider a getting boxster or a 355 instead. After all the cost of getting one is about the price of the msport. The used car prices fluctuates by the week. One week it's 350k the following week it's 298. It's a buyers' market now. In fact I did actually considered to buy one of this before I decided to go safe with the msport. To me the 325i is probably the best performance car we'll ever need in the real world. There's really no need to go beyond if your criteria of selecting is purely driving fun 1st and babe magnet last. Here are some of my reasons.

2006 Boxster (299k offered)

How often we get to drive with the top down. The weather is humid, the air laden with thick diesel most of the time. Being a 2 seater have too many drawbacks. 0-100 is nothing to shout about. In fact I think the msport is quicker. Maintenance is another scary story. Maybe 1 or 2 repair shops in KL can do the work but who knows when the gearbox and the engine's gonna give way. Parking the car is another challenge all together. Door dents, razor-blade torn roofs are some of the scary stories. This car doesn't only attracts babes, they attract vandals too. So really apart from being a great car that shouts "my car is better looking than yours", there's not much to go on.

Ferrari 355 (285k offered)

This car screams "look at me I've got a small penis". Pain in arse to maintain. Pain in the arse to park. Pain in the arse to drive in the city...pain in the arse... The only thing I think it serves a purpose is if you go to the track often. On the real world it's pretty useless. You like to drive it to big functions but then you may not like to valet park it. You need a fulltime mechanic or own a workshop to keep it. So no go for me. I may be a car nut but not to that extend.

The 325 msport on the other hand is great to drive regardless of weather, 4 can sit comfortably, maintenance is free for a good 3-4 years, the car is common and wouldnt really attract the undesirables like a Lexus of a 5er or the Boxster. Hmm.. I could go on...

Friday, August 7, 2009

New BMW Vision Z concept car

Today's technology seems to able to do anything. Here's a great story of how a spy picture shot in Frankfurt was unveiled the next day by a very creative and imaginative photo retoucher. Best part is the car hasn't even been unveiled yet.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

BMW Driving school Formula BMW track day Sepang

Here are some photos of the BMW driving school using the Formula BMW cars. The course costs each participant RM4500. Pretty expensive but it's one of those rare chances to drive a single seater. Probably the closest for the man in the street to experience what F1 drivers go through in a race.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Solution to dirty carbonised tail pipe

One of the more challenging things I found cleaning the car, was getting rid of the black carbon on the tail pipe. I've tried strong polish, steel polish, and even hot boiling water to try and soften the carbon but to no avail. Last weekend I got creative. Saw an old man cleaning his dirty pot with scour pads. Went home and tried it. I have to say the technique is so simple. All you need is 1 scour pad (go into your kitchen I'm sure you'll find some). Next dip the pad in your car shampoo. Scrub the tail pipe. Voila, no more black carbon stains.

Btw, why is the tail pipe always carbonised? A mechanic told me that the fuel mixture is not balanced. Too much petrol in the combustion. BMW? any answers?

Monday, August 3, 2009

Nail in my Run Flat Tyre!

The inevitable happened! Whilst cleaning the car, I came across a strange metallic piece embedded in the middle of my rear tyre. On closer inspection the fear of having a nail puncture struck a chord. This fear have been plaguing many bimmer owners since the day they used the RFT. Is this going to be really expensive affair? Do I have to change the entire wheel? I have read numerous forums of owners lamenting the lack of repair on the RFTs. No tyre shop would guaranteed the safety of a mended tyre. Made a check on recent posts and there seemed to a big group who has patched up the RFTs. From what I gather there seems to be 2 different weays of mending the tyres.

1 Plug: The plug technique. This is a simple way to plug a puncture. No need to remove the entire tyre from the rim. Just look for the hole and push in the plug. Together with some sealant the tyre is good to go. A big CAUTION on this method. It's not recommended to be used on the M SPORT as the plug might dislodge itself the same way it came in when the car is flying beyond 160km.

2 Patch: The method is the safer way to mend the tyre. The whole process takes about half an hour. The mechanics will have to remove the entire wheel and mend the tyre from the inside. The photos above is self explanatory. The wheel needs to be rebalanced after the patching job as the tyres were removed for the repair. The entire job costs rm25 for the patch and another rm10 for the wheel balancing. So let's see if the much debated about RFT repairs holds any ground. On theory it seems plausible that repairing the tyre should be ok.

My conclusion from this experience is that the RFT concept while it's great for safety but it sucks in reality. Our roads are paved with all sorts of debris, pot holes and other whathaveyous... Not many tyre shops knows how to repair, let alone remove the unique RFTs. The best part of it is that it didn't show up on the idrive. So you bimmer owners out there do check on your tyres periodically. The engineers should have thought about this when they decide to put it into thousands of bimmers.