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987 Cayman S or E92 M3 ?


jmcc42uk

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Hi Guys,

 

I know this has been done to death but it's good to find different opinions...especially on this side of the pond.

 

I have a £20-22k budget but could possibly stretch to £25k if really needed.  The car will be a second car so only out for sunny days, track days and a few euro trips to south of France etc.

 

Which one would you have?

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I think what's key here for me is the use, if I was using as a daily driver then it would be a closer call between the two, but for weekend blasts and track day enjoyment I'd have to say Cayman.  

 

For £25k you should get into a Gen2 Cayman which would be worth it IMO.  

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Having had 9 BMWs from 1986 to 2014, the last one a 2003 E46 330ci, I'd say any BMW after this isn't a "proper" driving machine.

 

I tried a used E92 early 2014 at a main dealer and found the seats weird. Kind of "V" shaped, trying to pinch my back all the time.

But the foremost reason I walked away was the VERY ODD steering. I turned a corner, slowly and the car understeered! I mean at like 15mph! Just the oddest experience I've ever had in a BMW. I actually chuckled as I left. That BMW think they can sell a car like that was unbelievable.

 

At the same time as this I drove a couple of post 2009 2.9 Caymans. The BMW was just not in the frame whatsoever. Ultimately I went for a Merc, then a TTS (unhappy with both) and now my 981. 

 

In answer to your question, if you can live with the slightly outdated 987 interior (I couldn't, for a DD), go 987.

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I drove an E92 M3 round brands on their experience days. Interior, seats etc knocks spots off the cayman plasticfest interior, lovely engine, paddle shift was actually ok, very efficient if you like paddles, but the killer blow was pitching into turns, no matter what modes i tried the heaviness was very apparent. Its more of a GT car in my view, nice to have the 4 seats but the weight really let it down when it came to pushing on. Oh and many owners i spoke to said the fuel consumption was hideous (i regularly get 27mpg from the croc). Drove a gen 1 cayman s shortly after and the rest etc etc.  

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Thanks chaps,  Ideally I want a 987.2 S but to get a good one will be stretching the budget.  However hartech have a 2007 Cayman S with a fully rebuilt hartech engine for £22,995.  This is big money for an older gen 1 but you have the reassurance of the engine being bulletproof under any conditions.  There is a red Gen2 on autotrader for £24k but it has zero options.

 

I have a 2005 E46 M3 CS at the minute but I really want to move away from the heavyness of BMW's and into a more focused sportscar. 

 

Is the interior in the Gen1 really bad?   My M3 interior is nothing to write home about in terms of quality, really starting to show it's age now

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25 minutes ago, jmcc42uk said:

Thanks chaps,  Ideally I want a 987.2 S but to get a good one will be stretching the budget.  However hartech have a 2007 Cayman S with a fully rebuilt hartech engine for £22,995.  This is big money for an older gen 1 but you have the reassurance of the engine being bulletproof under any conditions.  There is a red Gen2 on autotrader for £24k but it has zero options.

 

I have a 2005 E46 M3 CS at the minute but I really want to move away from the heavyness of BMW's and into a more focused sportscar. 

 

Is the interior in the Gen1 really bad?   My M3 interior is nothing to write home about in terms of quality, really starting to show it's age now

 

Spent ages searching for an E46 M3 CS before i bought my Cayman. Really liked them but the prices started to go silly and sadly the E46 M3 model seemed to attract the 'early twenties can't really afford it but will rag it until it needs serious money spending and then try to shift it on for silly money' brigade. The early cayman interiors are not great in comparison to other cars but you are really paying for the chassis over the trinkets. I don't mind them in a way and they have a simplicity about them, i even stripped out the crap radio on mine and fitted the cayman r radio blanking plate. I think general wisdom says if you can afford the gen 2 its well worth it. 23k seems a lot for a gen 1 although you haven't mentioned mileage. People can spend hours arguing over gen 1 vs 2 and no one can really say whats right for you or truly quantify the risk of the gen 1. To me there is nothing in the driving experience between the two cars so at the time the price differential was about 10k so i personally opted for the gen 1. I am lucky in that if she blows it won't ruin me financially and i don't worry about it at all. My car has 75k miles and it was recently borescopes with no issues - I have no warranty. You can read experiences of owners in the US who have put over 150k miles on their gen 1 car with no issues and there are obviously those whose car has bore scored and one chap on PH had it happen twice. Do whatever allows you to sleep at night!   

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You can pick up a gen1 for about 12k these days with pretty good mileage on, I'd be tempted to go for one and bank the difference of 10k plus for emergencies.  I agree with PR36 when he says there is no real difference in the drive of a gen1 over a gen2, you're paying a premium for the perceived reduction in risk, slightly more modern interior and the kudos of 'gen2'.  

 

An engine rebuild if the worst happened shouldn't cost the £10k you'd banked.  

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I've never heard of Hartech, sorry. So when it comes time for you to sell it the fact it's been "messed with" will put the vast majority of buyers off, no matter what you say to them. Looking for a 987 I personally wouldn't touch a Gen 1, I definitely wouldn't look at one 10k more than the market price with a non-standard engine. Also, the one you've seen is only two years younger than your "showing its age" BMW. Mark my words, you'll be sorry...!

 

If you buy a Gen 2, with a few desirable options, not only will you have peace of mind about the engine but you may well have a classic which won't lose anywhere as much as a car which only a handful of future buyers will touch. Borrow the extra now, and you'll be quids in over the period of your ownership.

 

Or... do what 987Monkey says and keep an emergency fund?

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A Hartech rebuild is well thought of in Porsche circles, in regard to the Gen1 Cayman engines, it probably does put the price of the car up if it's had their treatment, although £22k does seem a bit steep to me.

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Thanks guys,

 

Yeah, I thought the Hartech one was a bit pricey too.  I reckon £18k would have been more realistic for an '07 car with no options. 

 

Been researching a bit more and I think the e92 m3 is more of a GT car and won't really be specal enough for a weekend car.  Plus, am I the only one that thinks that BMW makes cars of questionable quality?  I've had 5 BMW's over the years and only one was trouble free, The rest were always breaking.  Extremely overrated in my opinion.

 

 

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Hi Chaps,

 

Thanks for the replies.  I have driven a 981 base PDK Cayman round a track at Thruxton and had a quick run round the block in an e92 M3.   I am still undecided as to what to do.  I'm looking at a 2007 Cayman S with a fully rebuilt Hartech engine or a 2008 m3 with 40k.   Thing is I really want a Cayman R but the budget will not stretch till next year so i'm looking to dip a toe into Cayman ownership.  Can't decide between the two....one day its the Cayman next it's the m3!

 

I have heard mention that the earlier Cayman interiors are a bit rattley and cheap...surely they can't be too bad?

 

 

 

 

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18 minutes ago, jmcc42uk said:

Hi Chaps,

 

Thanks for the replies.  I have driven a 981 base PDK Cayman round a track at Thruxton and had a quick run round the block in an e92 M3.   I am still undecided as to what to do.  I'm looking at a 2007 Cayman S with a fully rebuilt Hartech engine or a 2008 m3 with 40k.   Thing is I really want a Cayman R but the budget will not stretch till next year so i'm looking to dip a toe into Cayman ownership.  Can't decide between the two....one day its the Cayman next it's the m3!

 

I have heard mention that the earlier Cayman interiors are a bit rattley and cheap...surely they can't be too bad?

 

 

 

 

 

I never had a problem with my Gen1 being rattly, the only rattle issue sometimes can be the boot lid, but thats easily fixed at nil cost.  The interior isn't cheap, it's typical German but bear in mind it's 10 years old so not as modern looking perhaps as a more, well modern car.  

 

A Gen1 with a Hartech rebuild would be a sweet car IMO, and 40k miles is still fairly low too.  

 

 

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I am pretty sure that hartec are the go to guys in the uk for anything Porsche engine related. They run a couple of cars in the British Porsche racing series. I think they even offer a considerable warranty on there engines so long as they do the servicing on it.   

 

I paid 16k for my full Porsche service history 47k miles gen 1. It's base, no pasm, sports chrono sat nav etc. 

 

I have since fitted a pioneer double fin head unit, next on the list is Royal steering wheel, handbrake and gear gaiter. Followed by black mesh front grill and side intakes. 

 

I figure i saved 10k on a gen2 that is only 3 years younger and had compatible mileage. If it goes

pop a hen I will have it rebuilt. 

 

I even cancelled my warranty wise policy supplied at my expense from the deal, warranty wise have a small entry in there terms and conditions that say there fair wear and tear policy exclusion ends at 10 years or 50k miles, meaning the policy would only

have been valid for about 3k miles, about 3 months. I put £300 a month in a savings account. I will keep this one 3 years, That will let me have £10k saved up to put into my next car if it doesn't go wrong in 3 years. It's a gamble but one I am prepared to take. 

 

if your looking at m3 performance have you considered a 997carrera s or 996 turbo, you won't loose money on a 996 turbo. I wish I had bought one I viewed 2 years ago. There just appreciating in value at the moment. 

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Thanks guys,  I weighing up some options at the min but it's hard to view the Cayman as it's at Hartech in Bolton and I'm inEast Sussex.  Driven a 911 but wasn't that impressed with the handling, when braking or cornering very hard you feel that you have to make allowances for the weight out the back.

 

There was a thread on the bootlid on Pistonheads but nobody seemed to get to the bottom of it?

 

 

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