Our life on the go is now becoming more exciting with the arrival of a hot new BMW 320d. What more it’s a bright red colour sport trim with exhilarating performance and fun driving.
Like: Fast, smooth, responsive and wonderful drive at any road condition. Gorgeous look, well-laid and spacious cabin, prestigious image.
Dislike: Purring of diesel engine audible at stationary and at low speed, auto on-off giving violent shake, headlights range a little short I can’t see far enough during night drive.
My verdict: *****
The story began….
I always feel reluctant to purchase a brand new car. High cost, and in Malaysia the cost of a brand new prestige continental car could buy a good bungalow at the outskirt of KL. I used a simple salary to car price ratio, for instance in my own case, it will take me 13 months salary to purchase a brand new car costing RM200k. When I worked in Ireland, I would only needed 6 months, which means luxury cars were more affordable there.
The second reason is this fear or phobia of owning a brand new machine, how long I could enjoy the ‘freshness’ before the first scratch or dent, and how long it will take for the car to age, what would it be like in 5, 10 years time? Will it still be enjoyable to own and drive as when it was new? Basically, it is this nervousness whether or not your investment is worth the money. With a used car, the worry is usually much less, since I will spend much less money, therefore even if something were to go wrong, I could use the money saved to fix it.
Not all the story of people buying brand new cars are rosy, some have suffered with frequent failures of various parts or breakdown, and sadly many who don’t get compensated well despite the much hyped 3 or 5 years full warranty. Apparently there are too many small prints that the 3 or 5 years warranty is just something to feel good on paper, when actual problems emerge, the dealers seem to have many excuses not to stick to their words, or there will be delay in repair, or recurrent problems despite repaired under warranty etc. Sorry, I begin with this negative remarks coz it is a real thing from reading many owners/readers feedback. Nowadays when I read expert reviews about cars I will also read users feedback, so I could learn from the real world.
In our case, there is now a real need to purchase a new car. We have sold our old Mercedes E240 to a good friend, at a knockdown price. Yes we still have two cars, a Satria Neo and a Starex. And I got the motorcycle so I don’t need car to work, except occassionally. However the wife, you know, had been used to driving a Merc, now has some expectation that a replacement is due soon, there we go (ehem…or is this just another excuse by me..?). Another good reason is, our daughter just passed her driving test and she will soon be needing a car, so, the Satria may soon become hers, leaving us with no compact car to drive to work. The Starex, yes its good for the family, but for daily commuting may not be that practical.
Lets go hunting…for a new beast
We knew what we wanted, however there were some flip flop in the thinking, as a result we kept changing the target form time to time. At times we thought of a sports/coupe (I was not in favour..), or a small compact, then a total swing to a high end luxury/prestige car. So we started visiting a few showrooms.
First we surveyed Mercedes. I had my mind on a new C class. However the cost of a brand new or preowned (showroom condition) was too prohibitive. Therefore a used local or imported is a good option. We went to several dealers and had a short test drive on a C180 AMG bodykit (used, recon, imported from UK), I personally liked it, and the wife was interested too. From our survey we had a good idea of the price ranges which was quite affordable. I had this habit of studying car review from WhatCar, a well reputed UK based Car Magazine website. Surprisingly, they gave a very low rating, due to modest cabin design/quality, unimpressive ride and the editor stated: We struggled to recommend this car as a compact executive…Obviously the review received intense criticism from the readers community, one sinistically remarked that the Editor’s bias was due to their good relationship with BMW!
Moving up the ladder, we thought of a new E-class, yes, it is classy, elegant looking and certainly received a highly favourable review from WhatCar Magazine. Since it is quite recently released (first car out in 2009), the price of a secondhand, imported (E200) would be around RM250k, cheaper for local version. We always have high regard for Merc, and our pleasant experience owning and driving three different Merc car (including our cute A-Class back in 99), was a lasting testimony. We kept our mind open, yes, either a cheaper AMG bodykitted C class, or the newer, more expensive E-class, is a possibility.
Then we tested two other brands. First we test drove the new Golf TSI – no GTI version available. Though came with a small engine (1.4L) this is a completely new concept of compact car, it came in a fresh outlook though not very appealing still (as always Golf is never striking in look…), and it drove blisteringly fast, a total surprise with its small engine. This would be a one car that closely matches the BMW in drivability – pity I could not test drive the 2L GTI one. Complete with many of the features such as auto on-off, keyless entry, seven speed tiptronic gearbox, and a reasonable starting price (for TSI version), was certainly an attraction. I have read the review too, and Golf is consistently highly rated, good safety features, excellent driving, practicality etc. Nevertheless, I was a bit turned off, since I was looking for a 2L car (a GTI), and yet, a GTI version would, according to the new proposed price revision, cost nearly as much as a 3 series BMW. On the other hand, it doesn’t carry as much prestige as a bimmer, and the look…yeah, though I like Golf very much (have pleasant experience driving it during our holiday last time in UK), I don’t like the appearance very much, its never inspiring, in fact it’s quite dull. So I have to excuse myself in the end.
Then we went for a new Mazda 6. This was rather accidental, initially I stopped at this Mazda showroom to check the Mazda 3 – I thought we may give a Japanese car a go this time…Then we were impressed with the new Mazda 6 shining appearance. It was a new release, early this year, comes with 2.5L engine with full ‘Skydrive’ concept making the car supposedly safer and more fun to drive. It came complete with leather seats, sunroof, keyless entry, stereo/DVD, driver assist including driver alert in case you fall asleep during a drive, and many safety features. Such an ideal luxury car. The price isn’t cheap but worth the money with all the above lavishness. I test drove the car for quite a distance, yes it was quick, punchy though a bit bumpy at times, and felt a bit like a BMW, though the wife pointed out that sitting inside, at the back did not make you feel like sitting in a luxury car, not as much. Overall it’s a great car, I wouldn’t mind having it, the only thing it is a Japanese car, lacking the three pointed star or bimmer badge in it!
My wife was also interested with Audi A4. We did own an Audi 80 long time ago, in Ireland. It was a nice car to drive and we love the experience. An Audi looks beautiful too, and it makes its presence on the road. I had some doubt though, as there are not that many reputable dealers, and the driveability is not any better than a BMW, yet the image, at least in Malaysia is not as high as a bimmer or Merc.
I have ruled out earlier interest in new Toyota Camry 2.5L (nice car, great 6 speed gearbox) as it lacked stability control system, and the Honda Accord 2.4L (drivability is quite average, according to WhatCar review). Wife was not very keen on these two Japanese brands anyway.
What a 180 degrees turn…back to the bimmer
How about a BMW? Yes I drove a bimmer before and as you can refer to my previous experience ‘Dream Machine?’, it was great fun to drive, though not to own. Our car then was a secondhand, about 5 year old when we purchased it. Despite its excellent drive, there were plenty of complaints – Aircondition compressor broke down at 2 months ownership, water reservoir leaking, and leaked again after the first repair causing constant visit to the garage, Engine oil dipped to ‘low’ after less than 1000km drive, smoky exhaust (and engine oil leak) necessitating a major overhaul (costing more than RM5k), plus many other smaller, but annoying problems such as battery ran flat with no prior warning, engine noise while driving and car could not accelerate – due to spark plug broke and loose cable, car suddenly died off while driving at a highway, electronics shut down – due to alternator chain broken, car cigarette lighter recurrent malfunction (the fused blew off so many times). We ended up trading in the car for the Starex, lost a lot of value, plus the money spent on the above repair. In short, a conclusion I failed to make then, was, a Dream machine turned into a nightmare machine?
So, how, with the above history we could relive our dream on BMW? Well, this was a battle hard fought. Despite the above predicament, we still felt that a BMW is an excellent car, for it is the best saloon car to drive, surpassing a Merc or any of those Japanese high end saloon – a fact testified by many expert drivers opinion. In fact, we knew, from WhatCar review – who of course have given a high rating on BMW (3 series and above), clearly admitted that BMW reliability has been moderate, not high! However, one thing that drove our thinking was the yearning for a different driving experience, wanting a car that gives you instant pleasure at handling and riding alone, put aside any other thing! Then the answer has to be one, a bimmer. True, you may have other suggestion, but that does not negate BMW of this special accolade.
So it was with this premise we revisited the possiblity of having a BMW. I wouldn’t go any higher than a 3 series – a fiver is more costly and goes with different class of people, therefore we like to keep our aim simple, go for fun and practicality, at much lower cost. I had done some study and somehow keen on a diesel car. Reading the review clearly favoured a diesel than petrol engine of the same capacity, for the diesel has a higher torque, much better economy and yet enjoy similar drive quality to that of petrol. I therefore was set to look for a 320d. On the day we went to the showroom at Ampang, we were told that they have a number of this ‘preregistered’ cars – basically they are new, unused car registered under the dealers name (maybe for showroom, or for testdrive but not used yet), offered at RM20k less. That rang the bell, yes, at least we could spend 20k less for a brand new car, why not! Off we went, for a testdrive. This was the first time I had driven a diesel BMW. From my reading, BMW made excellent diesel cars. There are by now, many good diesel cars around produced by many other car makers. That traditional thinking of diesel being smoky, noisy and slow is now drifting away. For passenger cars, there are many example of good diesel cars that perform even better than petrol siblings, not as noisy and of course much more economical. The closest I had experienced was a Landrover Discovery TD5 (read my review), which was an excellent SUV, drove almost exactly as a petrol car, indeed it was fast and agile despite it having not a modest capacity diesel engine.
We were introduced to the testdrive car, a beige colour 320d. First I listened to the engine note, as was commented by some observers, that ‘agricultural’ sound of diesel, very little noticeable. Once inside, I was sitting in a BMW car, did not feel any different that it being a diesel, could hardly hear the engine noise. Rolling on, the drive was extremely smooth, revving was taken very steadily with no excessive noise, in fact, comparing to the old E46 (2litre petrol) that turned rough when accelerated hard, the 320d went on willingly with no sound of being stressed. At times, cruising at a low speed brings that familiar ‘purring’ diesel sound that instantly invited the horror of “O my God, this is diesel and soon its going to scream and vibrate” – wrong, cause the purring immediately goes away when you rev harder, therefore making this diesel engine no different than a petrol counterpart. At speed, the move was so pleasant, punchy and agile, even with the comfort mode. With the sports mode, it was blistering fast, and yet so quiet, I almost thought that I was going to throw the car some valley ahead, due to its mighty acceleration, no doubt the quoted 0-100 km/h of 7.6s (similar with 320i though it has higher torque or pulling power) makes the car a powerful cruiser, have no worry though coz it was stable and feel safe at high speed.
We have almost made up our mind at the end of the test drive, when I suddenly backed off. Lets give it sometime, I thought. I still had to search around, on the history of diesel car in Malaysia. We found out that now local diesel is graded at Euro 2 star, which is not bad compared to years ago. I also wanted to convince myself that the residual value would be good. This was more difficult to prove though looking at Mudah.com there were some used diesel model being put for sale, at good price. So more or less reasonable resale value. Howe about the fuel, they always advise not to get diesel from Petronas (purity issue? I wasnt sure). We had sometimes problem refuelling at a nearby Shell station, they frequently ran out of diesel. So, on the day we were going to make our booking finally, I ensured that there were a few Shell station around our area where diesel can be obtained easily. It took us more than two weeks before we came back with our final decision. We were interested with the red car, which they happened to keep at the showroom, we were delighted to know that the car was still available, so we proceeded to make the booking. Everything else after that was history.
Welcoming the new car
This preregistered car came with full warranty, short of 5 months of the period that has passed since it was registered. The mileage when I turned on the keyless ignition, was 28km (basic mileage used for the journey to JPJ/PUSPAKOM according to Auto Bavaria). We were quite anxious as there were quite some delay in getting the car, it took two and a half weeks since booking before the car was finally released. Coinciding with public holiday and long weekends contributed to the delay, however I think the main reason was due to the complexity of the finance agreement, the car was registered under my wife’s name, while I was acting as ‘guarantor’ means I am the one paying the loan. I supposed this took a little longer and all the concerned parties had to do double correspondence each time anything arise. I also learned the trick, that for the purpose of maximising your loan, the bigger your downpayment, the higher interest (sorry its no interest, we went for Islamic Banking, its called commission or profit sharing) you have to pay – the difference was quite small though. Of course you still benefit in having to repay less monthly and the total surplus to be paid is less.
There were more delay, even on the day the car was released, rushing from work with my motorcycle, on arrival the wife told me that the car wasn’t ready yet, and it was close to 6pm. Apparently they were not satisfied with a few minor things that did not meet the standard of a new released car. The guy told me that they had to replace the battery since on testing, the old battery did not meet factory standard of some sort. Wan, the salesman took us to the car and went through in some details on the basics of operation. We were absorbed into a world of fantasy and illusion, the moment we walked approaching our very own dream machine. Standing proudly before us was this pristine, beautiful red bimmer that is now ours!. Its a 320d Sport – with 1995cc turbocharged engine with 8 speed auto gearbox, Amsterdam red in colour, the interior lined with black leather and elegant looking dashboard, all looked fresh and new. I had the pleasure to drive the car home, sitting at the back was my daughter Nawal and her friend Maryam who came along with the mother right from school. The Queen decided to let me drive, and she was satisfied with leading the journey on my Satria Neo which she drove from work. I left my Duke at the BMW showroom, so that I could come back later to fetch it home.
To avoid traffic congestion, we drove around the Ampang Hilir area moving towards Ampang road then to Jelatek. Crawling slowly, the initial rattle from the Diesel engine could be heard very softly, the hum can be heard when moving at low speed or when the engine is cold. However at high speed you won’t notice any noice, even flooring the accelerator will not bring that strain noise usually heard with diesel engine. At idle, indeed sitting in front, or at the back you can hear the engine clatter which is a little bit more than what you would expect from a petrol variant. The ambient in the cabin was filled with splendor and luxury feel that you will not like to get out of the car too soon. So I forgot about how bad the traffic was, cause every moment I spent in the car was mesmerising, even when it was iddling. I enjoyed the quietness, the smooth and responsive acceleration whenever I had the chance to do so. Passing though heavy traffic congestion was painless, the girls at the back were busy fiddling with the seat divider and Nawal with her usual tone of excitement and delight, they soon fell asleep in the comfort of the backseat.
So, after two and a half week of waiting, finally we drove this car back home and have it parked at the driveway. On arrival, the auto stop engine shut down, this puzzled my father in law who was standing outside who soon learned about the auto stop/start function which was designed to save fuel and make the car stay quietly whenever stationary. A little word about the auto stop/start, is one of the hiccups of this diesel bimmer. First I am not so sure how much is this manouver going to save fuel, since it will not stay ‘off’ for long enough (you need full engine capacity to maintain functions such as aircondition), second the wake up note is violent, it is in fact similar to starting the ignition from cold. Since the default is auto on, you have to press a little button above the ignition button to disable this feature each time you start the car. After a while, we kind of getting used to it, and found it quiet pleasant since, it did quieten down the diesel clatter completely. When the engine is autostopped, at a traffic light for instance, it still did not reduce your pickup acceleration a bit, just take off your foot of the brake pedal, the engine will resume and you are ready to go. This, I found in contrast to other cars like VW Golf, where the autostop requires you to press the accelerator pedal in order to restart the engine, which in effect introduced some 0.3s delay.
The spots trim comes with five spoke alloy rims with standard leather seats and a striking fine red lining separating the upper and lower part of the dashboard. Electric controlled seat adjustment for front seats, some storage recesses like cup holders (front and back) and arm rest, a fairly large digital display panel that incorporates various utilities including the entertainment, communication and various cabin control functions such as iDrive (basic), car stereo system limited to audio, No DVD, just CD player but you can connect MP3 audio via Bluetooth or USB, also AUX input available. No satellite nav. The Bluetooth communication set is a breeze which when connected to your phone allows you to make and receive call using the car internal speaker system. I found this very handy, indeed this is the first functioning bluetooth integrated system that allows me to make full use of the smartphone to make and receive call while on the move. The bluetooth communication automatically copied all my phone contacts, this was done over time as there were a few hundred contacts in my phonebook, looks like it is capable of reading the Android system well. Steering mounted control for stereo and phone function is present as before. The dashboard screen also function to display the car reverse sensor, automatically activated when I engaged the reverse gear, or can be manually activated by a touch of a button near the gear stick, this actually works to detect front as well as rear objects, which is very useful.
On the road with a gleaming new bimmer!
Everything about the bimmer, from stationary to a high speed cruising, is about prestige, performance and fun. First, the good look, no denying that some of the expert review has alluded that the three series new look is one of the best among the new cars. There is a balance of tone, curves, lines and angles that gives its outstanding appearance. Over the years, it is the unique look (just right, not too classy, not too sporty) of this car that has kept my interest alive. The new 3 series did it better and with slightly longer and wider body makes its presence more felt on the road. As regards to body trim, there are so many variants, I guess they are made to satisfy the need of various categories of people young and old drivers alike. We thought that a red colour suits our new car well, initially we were quite at loss when all the available models then came in either black, white and grey – they looked quite fine but somewhat lacking, till we spotted the red, we immediately made up our mind.
The new series has been made slightly wider and longer. Therefore there is ample cabin space for driver and passengers. The rear seats enjoy great legrooms and comfortably sit 3 large adults or 4 small children though they wont sit there quietly knowing their nature. The boot space is generous, we could easily throw in one large baggage plus 2 other regular size, plus a pram, plus few more small bags. With the run flat tires, you already save space for spare tyre, therefore additional space under the boot to store some essential stuff.
The car remote control system that also functions as a keyless entry and ignition system, is surprisingly bulky, I could not get it sit in my pocket comfortably. In our case it did not end there, since my dear wife had attached the large controller to another yet, large keychain, so together I sometimes felt a bit awkward walking around with the things in my pocket. I guess, they could have made it thinner and smaller, but I am yet to discover of anything additional that this controller is equipped with to give explanation to its gigantic size. The keyless ignition can be started by keeping the brake paddle depressed while pressing the button located to the left of the steering wheel. I still could not come to term with this complexity of having a keyless ignition, which you still need the controller to be nearby anyway when starting the engine. Once it is on, I could walk a way a bit, which the dashboard monitor will start to flash an alert that they keyless controller is not presence, and if I move further enough (50m), the engine would shut automatically. I mostly keep the controller in my pocket, or under the dashboard, hoping not to forget to keep it in my hand when I stop the vehicle while leaving the engine on. I noted that, when you stop the car with the auto on-off enabled (default is on), put the gear on Park, and activate the remote lock, the engine will immediately shutdown. Mind you, this only worked when the auto on-off is in operation, otherwise, activating the lock while the engine is on does nothing apart from locking the doors as usual. This may be handy or not depend on your situation, but too many automatic operating system could at times be undesirable I suppose, one could only imagine any other possibility…
The next thing is the gearbox. It is another clever engineering. The gearbox is no longer a physical gearbox, its merely a digital one. What I mean, when I engage the gear to D, N, R or P, it still remains in the same position, what changes is the gears (you know by looking at the dashboard screen) while the stick is a mere reminiscent of the old gearstick (it could have been replaced with simple buttons indeed, though that sounds too radical I guess!). To be precise, I just have to hold the ‘unlock’ button to the right of the gearstick while engaging the D, N or R. As to the parking gear, it is engaged simply by pressing the P button located at the top of the gearstick. The story goes, my wife was stuck at the toll gate once, on her first outing with this car, when she forgot to press the unlock button trying to engage the Drive (gear was set to P while stopping) – as a result nothing happened, till she did the correct thing. I still get confused sometimes, thus I always keep my eyes on the dashboard screen to ensure that the gearshift had worked.
The 8 speed gearbox is brilliantly designed, I hardly feel the shift, and the quick acceleration means when entering a highway, I could join the fastlane almost immediately, no moments needed to build up speed – just in an instant I reached 120km/h thanks to this powerful diesel engine. Running at speed below 100km/h is a great temptation, you will hardly enjoy it …how I put it, a bimmer always likes to be driven fast, and a 120km/h is understatement, my friend said he regularly drives his bimmer at 160km/h, this is his normal speed, so you can imagine what speed he is when going fast! Well, as for me, I like the fast speed but I dont really go that crazy, yeah I will keep to the speed limit most of the times, for safety and comfort (though comfort is no issue as even at 180km/h the vehicle cruises willingly, stable and smooth). In a highway, there is no more diesel feeling, the rev was very smooth, engine was quite and the pull was great, no sign of stress at all, climbing up, even with full load was splendid, if you floor the accelerator while ascending uphill, you will almost forget that you are driving a diesel car, it just goes willingly as long as your foot is on the accelerator. As a matter of fact, this the strength of the diesel engine, with a greater pulling power compared to a similar capacity petrol engine. In normal cruising I had difficulty keeping to speed limit, just when I thought that I was steady at 120km/h suddenly I realised the odometer is showing 140km/h. (You may wonder if I make use of the auto-cruise function, actually in Malaysian roads, I don’t prefer to use the auto-cruise, except in a clear highway road, which is a rarity). Amazingly, at 140km/h the rpm meter is just over 2000, it just goes to tell how much ‘meat’ this machine has to deliver, it has plenty of oomph. Going from 140, 160, 180 is nothing, no stress, no engine roar, the vehicle gains the higher speed willingly, effortless. What a breeze.
Here comes the dream machine
It is a gem, whether you drive it in a sporty way, or a more relaxing comfort drive. The car comes with four driving mode, Comfort, Comfort Pro, Sport and Sport Plus. The default mode and the best is Comfort, since it gives you balance of comfort, performance and economy, for most purposes it is more than enough to satisfy your need of driving in various conditions. It is punchy enough, and if you accelerate full, it gives more than enough power to be ahead of your competitors. The Sport is great for occasional fun driving comes the need to frequently maneuver around bends or overtaking. The Sport Plus mode will disable the traction control and you almost feel like driving a sports car, in fact it could be a little scary as the car suddenly becomes too brisk and rowdy, may not be an ideal mode if you are afraid to cause bodily harm to your brand new 200k plus machine!
We have taken the car for long rides, return journeys to Batu Pahat and Kuala Trengganu. And I have got a good bit of experience driving in various road conditions including rain, hilly and twisty roads and night driving. A huge contrast to our old E46, this 320d is a mighty workhorse, indeed at times it has too much power that I could nearly throw the beast away like a bullet, just press the accelerator full, the car will jolt to your surprise that if you aren’t careful enough you will suddenly land on someone’s bumper. Thanks to the equally competent brakes system that responds at an instant, watch your back though, there might be fools tailgating behind who may not be blessed with the same previlege.
The bimmer has truly brought back the pleasure of driving in style. I am not saying that we did not enjoy the drive with the Starex or Mercedes, far from that. Both ‘cars’ were fine – together we had driven the Starex for over 35,000km, and the Merc – which mostly were driven for short journeys had clocked over 60,000miles by our own mileage. However, with its blistering performance, driving comfort and stability at high speed the bimmer is a league of its own. The second day we had the car, my wife asked, how is it like, driving the bimmer? My simple answer – ecstasy!
Though all cars are made for driving, a 3 series bimmer makes performance driving its ultimate specialty. There the term driver’s car comes. But now its not only driver’s car, you can enjoy the uncompromised, punchy and exhilarating cruise without sacrificing passenger’s comfort. Since I had previously driven a 5 year old car, so I am qualified to claim that this pleasant driving is not shortlived. Of course a F30, this new car is, does it better in almost every aspect. Talking about passenger’s comfort, I had a brief experience of sitting as a passenger, mostly in front. I think at a speed up to 120-130km/h you enjoy passenger comfort most, beyond this, you will have to be more alert of the wind noise plus the body roll to some extent. At a much higher speed, I guess a bigger car like 5 or seven series would be more advantageous.
How about fuel economy? My estimate is 800-900km with a full tank (57 litres). This is an awesome performance which will not be matched by any decent petrol engine. Added by the unflinching driving performance, the overall quiet engine that matches almost that of the petrol variant, then I have no regret of buying this diesel car. It is no coincident that both of our main cars are powered by diesel engines (if you can call Starex a car…). In fact it is our history of driving diesel vehicle (since 2004 with the old Pajero) which now has given us the confidence to go for the 320d. Of course, our first diesel machine was a true breed of that slow, noisy and smoky diesel image. Though it stood more like a van, the Starex had given us much pleasure of running a diesel vehicle, its overall competent engine and reasonably quiet at cruising speed had been a bliss. Then came this new baby what an ultimate experience with a diesel car that we have now forgotten the real difference between diesel and petrol engines.
How about maintenance, yes I do not expect its going to be cheap, but at least we are now mentally more prepared to face BMW attention seeking behaviour as it is known with. Since we were looking for years of driving thrill and fun, we are willing to risk a higher cost of maintenance. We have a high hope that the first 3-5 years should be hassle free after which maintenance cost is expected to spiral.
Postscript: It is a dream machine and a driver’s car, but not mine!
Haha that’s the trick. After all that, let me make myself clear, that this beautiful bimmer is not mine, coz it is registered under my wife. As with me, I have been driving most of that first 1000km, then on, I am going back to riding my KTM Duke 200 to work, and this is the most practical solution for me. Truly sitting in a BMW instantly makes one forget about the world momentarily, all the worries and exhaustion from the daily chores, it is a fantasy & illusion, and moving in the heavily congested traffic, you will enjoy a compliment of luxury ambient, quiet and pleasant drive that getting to your destination became second, you are treated to an endless joy and fun of driving. However, to get to work on time, you do not need to be glued to all this luxury, you just want to be able to cruise along regardless of the traffic. Therefore I choose the Duke 200 as my company, and so far it has never failed to get me to work in 20 minutes (plus minus) or even less.