Feature Listing: 2011 BMW 328i

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Living in a fairly wealthy, urban area, the BMW 3 series seems as ubiquitous as a Toyota Camry. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. These compact BMWs are certainly capable of cars, but as a former E30 owner, the new ones fail to relight my fire, lest I steal a line from one of my favorite Dan Hartman songs from the late 1970s. This 2011 328i Coupe for sale from our friends at Euro Automotion has me doing a double take, however. Sure, it’s saddled with the 6-speed automatic, but considering the mileage and condition, this is a quite affordable option to a well-optioned, brand new subcompact.

Click for details: 2011 BMW 328i at Euro Automotion

2011 Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0

Any ultimate 911 will be highly coveted. But when that ultimate 911 was never expected to be produced and happens to be a version that followed upon multiple variants of the model, then we really begin to step into rarefied air. For its homologation purposes Porsche released its first GT3 RS as part of the 996 model line. Those cars were never available in the US market so when it was announced that the 997 GT3 RS would make it to our shores, there was much rejoicing. But Porsche was restless and the 997 GT3 RS would see not one, not two, but three separate versions showcasing increasing displacement and further lightening. These began life with a 415 hp 3.6 liter flat-six, which two years later was replaced with a 3.8 liter flat-six producing 450 hp. It was assumed that would be the end and yet very late in the 997’s model life whispers began about one more version: a 4.0 liter flat-six pushing 500 hp. The numbers seem impossible. 500 hp from a relatively small package all directed to the rear wheels and all without the benefit of forced induction. This is truly engineering excellence.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2011 Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0 on eBay

2011 Porsche Boxster Spyder

The Porsche Boxster has been with us for nearly twenty years now and while it initially was derided as being somewhat soft Porsche gradually applied corrections and enhancements, most notably releasing the Boxster S, and at this point the Boxster makes for an excellent open-top performer. Even still the Boxster has never really been Porsche’s go to performance car. Much of that has been reserved, quite naturally, for the 911, but also for the Cayman, which debuted around half way through the Boxster’s current life. The Boxster has first and foremost been a roadster. Following along in that tradition the release of the Boxster Spyder was long overdue. The traditional roadster was meant to be a relatively simple machine. Granted, with the passage of time that formula has shifted toward higher degrees of refinement, but there remains within the ethos of any open-top two-seater that basic sense of sacrificing practicality in the name of oneness between driver, machine, and environment. In that manner, in producing the Spyder Porsche scrapped more than 100 pounds from the Boxster S through a variety of weight saving measures, most visibly through the sacrifice of the standard convertible top for what really is little more than a sun shade. Additional savings were found through aluminum doors and lighter wheels along with a host of deletions from the interior, including the use of carbon-fiber sport seats. All together we are left with one of the lightest cars in the Porsche lineup, but still with plenty of power to compliment that lighter weight. The example we see here is a Carrera White 2011 Porsche Boxster Spyder, located in Texas, with Red leather interior and 10,244 miles on it.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2011 Porsche Boxster Spyder on eBay

2011 BMW 1M

Like many I was filled with excitement and anticipation when it was announced that BMW would release a M-package 1-series. We were all pretty sure it wouldn’t be called the M1, since that name was taken, but regardless of what it was called there was plenty to be excited about. The 3-series was getting too big and seemed a significant departure from the iconic E30 M3, which was for me, though I didn’t really know it at the time, THE CAR to capture my attention and it elicited “ooohhs” and “aaahhhs” whenever we passed the local BMW dealer. I only saw it from afar so I can’t say exactly what color it was, though I know it was bright – something along the lines of Zinnoberrot I’d guess. Of course the 1M isn’t quite to the E30’s stature, at least not yet, but it was smaller and better proportioned than its siblings and that definitely was a step in the right direction. But whereas the E30 possesses a litheness to its design, the 1M is all muscle and with 335 hp it packs plenty of punch to backup that sculpted appearance. There is an Alpine White 1M that runs around where I live and for a white car it’s pretty darn sexy, but ultimately I come back to that first M3 and look for something a little brighter like this Valencia Orange 2011 BMW 1M Coupe, located in Illinois, with 32,250 miles on it.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2011 BMW 1M on eBay

Double Take: Audi A6 3.0T quattro Avant

Last week I wrote up a 2007 A6 3.2 quattro Avant S-Line, the end of a dying breed of luxury wagons from German manufacturers. But before they fully dismissed the large wagon from U.S. shores, Audi went out with a bang when it refreshed the A6 in 2009. Minor updates to styling once again brought the A6 in line with the new design language from Audi, but the real change was under the skin. As they had with the previous models, in an attempt to save some weight from the large Audis the company utilized aluminum throughout; the 3.0Ts featured aluminum hood and fenders like the previous generation S6 had. Additionally, just like the 3.2 had been, the new 3.0T was an aluminum block; the decrease in displacement was more than made up for with a literal boost from the supercharger. With a full 20% power increase to 300 horsepower and 310 lb.ft of torque at a low 2,500 rpm, the new 3.0T was a much better performer than the 3.2 FSi V6 had been and was, briefly, a defacto S-Avant that was missing from the lineup. On top of that, the new supercharged layout meant power increases are much easier to attain; as Chris Harris demonstrated with his stunning S4 v. RS4 comparison. Audi also moved away from its “S-Line” designations towards the new strata of Premium, Premium Plus ($1,400), and Prestige ($3,200) levels which added levels of electronic wizardry and small detail difference. That was on top of the raised base price, now $60,200 in 2010. If you though the 3.2 was rare, the 3.0T is downright hard to find even though they’re nearly new.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2011 Audi A6 3.0T quattro Avant on Cargurus

2011 Porsche 911 GT2 RS

Last week, in my feature of a 911 GT2, I mentioned off hand that from its inception the GT2 has been the ultimate 911 – right up until the release of the GT2 RS, a car that took all of the insanity of the GT2 and decided it was not insane enough. Lo and behold, I then came across one such beast up for sale. Here we have a triple Black 2011 Porsche 911 GT2 RS, located in California, with 5,781 miles on it. Weighing not much more than 3000 lbs and with power raised to 620 hp along with 516 lb-ft of torque the GT2 RS rivals any supercar and even dips its toes into hypercar territory. Yet it remains a functional machine that, while not an everyday cruiser, still doesn’t require its owners to suffer quite as many sacrifices to comfort and usability as certain Italian rivals might necessitate. It is one of the quickest cars Porsche has ever produced and, look at that, it also has a good ‘ol trusty 6-speed manual transmission, a reality that surely we will not see in future iterations of the GT2 (assuming one actually comes to pass).

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2011 Porsche 911 GT2 RS on eBay

2011 Porsche Cayenne 6-speed manual

Even though it’s been with us for more than a decade, I still can’t wrap my head around the Porsche Cayenne. For a company that started as a manufacturer of light weight sports cars based around Volkswagen architecture, this heavy beast seems out of place in the lineup of a sports car manufacturer. However, it’s been a hot seller and has provided Porsche an infusion of cash which will allow the sports car business to go on and on. The first generation Cayenne came in many varieties, including a GTS model with a 6-speed manual gearbox. This wasn’t the natural choice for the soccer mom, but for those who wanted a bit of fun in large truck format, there were few choices at the time. With the debut of the second generation Cayenne, the manual option was eliminated from the GTS model, but you could still row your own with a “base” model with the V6. This 2011 Cayenne for sale in Oregon is equipped as such and is a decidedly unorthodox choice if you’re in the market for a used SUV.

Click for details: 2011 Porsche Cayenne on eBay

Convertible Week: 2011 Porsche 911 Speedster

As a brand new Porsche 911 passed me by the other day, I thought to myself “my this car got fat.” Sure, the new 911 is a perfectly capable and desirable sports car which is (thankfully) still offered with a manual gearbox. Years before the 911, Porsche introduced the Speedster moniker on the 356, a lower cost, simpler option for those seeking drop top thrills. The Speedster name would carry on through several iterations of the 911, up to the latest example we see here, the 997-based 911 Speedster. While many of the 997 Speedsters you see are painted in Pure Blue, this 911 Speedster for sale in Connecticut wears the more classic Carrera White.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2011 Porsche 911 Speedster on JamesEdition

2011 BMW 135i M Sport

Here we have a very fine example of a car I still think falls into the drastically underrated category despite its reputation amongst those in the know. The 1 Series is viewed by most as a Bangle era failure to modernize the formula that made BMW famous, a tightly packaged two door with a solid powerplant under the hood. While the 128i is no slouch, the 135i with its 300 hp twin-turbo inline-6 is the only spec I’d consider. Add in the M Sport package which gives the car six piston calipers up front, two piston calipers in the rear, a very nice perforated steering wheel/shift knob and super comfortable sport seats. I’ve sat in one of these cars with and without the M-Sport package and in opinion, the M Sport package is a must. Without it the 1 Series appears rather basic, especially the 2008 to 2010 pre-facelift models. Aside from visual tweaks that really tightened up the overall look of the car, from 2011-on the 135i got the N55 inline-6 which used a single twin-scroll turbocharger to make the same power as the N54 and its two turbochargers. While having a twin-turbo motor sounds cool, it’s really just one extra part to worry about. The N55 has less turbo lag, better low rev torque, lower emissions and is more fuel efficient than its predecessor. I’d call that a no contest victory.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2011 135i M Sport on AutoTrader

2011 Porsche 911 GT3 RS

Ah, the GT3 RS. Push a road-going 911 towards its logical conclusion in terms of power and lightness and this is more or less what you get. And here we have one of the later versions with its 3.8 liter flat-6 delivering 450 hp to the rear wheels via a 6-speed manual transmission. Ever since they were first introduced for the 996 I have always loved these and they follow in a long line of RS variants that have consistently been some of the most sought after 911s Porsche has produced. While previous RS variants focused largely on the combination of power and lightness, the GT3 RS began to add significant aerodynamic aids to help deliver all that power effectively and keep the car glued to the road through even the quickest turns. The RS has long been a way for Porsche to provide its customers with a car that pushes road car limits while also meeting the homologation requirements that have enabled the marque to continue its long history of racing success. Of course, those cars we see thundering down the Mulsanne straight at Le Mans differ markedly from any road car Porsche produces, but that’s why the RS has always been so coveted. It strives for similar racing ideals, while retaining the comforts and conveniences that have always made the 911 such a wonderful road car.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2011 Porsche 911 GT3 RS on eBay