By on July 19, 2012

 TTAC commentator krhodes1 writes:

Hi Sajeev,

As promised in your Taurus X post, here are the incriminating photos. The badge up close: 328!.



Here’s when I took delivery at BMW Welt, just drove down the ramp into the parking lot:



In Amsterdam at the Crowne Plaza just before I dropped her off to ship home – the fat bastard is me. Keep up the good work, I could not make it through the day without TTAC!

Sajeev brings it home:

While I never took pictures of this process–that’s like totally not allowed, ya know–in the last few factory tours I’ve seen, this really shouldn’t happen.  The emblem alignment machine on the assembly line makes this rather impossible. My only guess is that the emblem was shipped to the factory with the “i” positioned upside down, it was already lined up and glued to go on that way. Which is somewhat tragic, except far more hilarious. Put another way…


And, for crying out loud, you’re not a fat bastard!  Rather, you have the proud stature of a proper Automotive Journalist.  But seriously, I used to sell Corporate Wellness Programs (and you thought selling cars was tough? At least people want that crap!) so you should address this situation. Vellum Venom also applies to the human physique?

Perhaps that’s true…and perhaps I better hit the gym myself. Dang.

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18 Comments on “Vellum Venom Vignette: BMW 328!....”

  • avatar
    Adrian Roman

    Probably the delocalized / outsourced company (read Asian sweatshop) which manufatures the emblems recently got a large order for VW Up! emblems and got disoriented…

  • avatar

    How embarassing, especially for a European delivery! I have never heard of the i being upside-down. After a week of sedans and coupe production, they probably got confused when a single wagon rolled down the assembly line.

    Its kind of cool in way but I would ask them to fix it, if only to see some Germans in suits scrambling around, and to see how they handle quality issues during Euro Delivery. Krhodes, I know you didn’t find the issue until months later, but have you brought it to their attention yet?

    • 0 avatar

      No, I actually never noticed! A friend pointed it out out to me about a month after it arrived back in the States. It is actually pretty subtle in person. I rather like it, makes the car more mine.

      As to it being the ‘single wagon rolling down the assembly line’ HAHAHAHAHA – 3-series wagons are about the ONLY 3-series you see in Europe. I saw a handful of sedans, a single coupe, and single convertible (driven by a STUNNING Danish blond) in THREE WEEKS in Europe. The wagons are EVERYWHERE. I don’t think there was any point in the three weeks where there was not at least one other 3-series wagon within eyeshot – they are like CamCords in the States. Plus of course all the other various station wagons and hatches. Somewhere in my mass of photos from the trip I have a trifecta picture of an e36 wagon, an e46 wagon, and my e91 all in a row parked on the street in Berlin. And I didn’t even plan it, I just found a good spot and parked.

      It is only Americans who are too stupid to appreciate the station wagons perfection. :-)

      • 0 avatar

        Too true. Europe is full of wagons. I guess the assembly line really doesn’t have a good excuse then.

        I appreciate the BMW wagons. In anticipation of my E46 sedan dying in 4-5 years, I will soon begin the excrutiating task of finding a used E90 328i or 328! wagon with the sport package and manual transmission.

      • 0 avatar

        Wagon, rwd, manual, and sport? Good luck man. That is MAYBE 10 -20 cars a year sold in the entire US. And people tend to hang on to them.

        Though if BMW brings the 320d F31 over with manual transmission, and you can forego the sport pack, we might have to talk. ;-)

  • avatar

    So much for the myth of meticulous German craftmanship…

    • 0 avatar

      In the late 90’s I had a student in my lab who was from East Germany. His first language was Germna, second Russian, third French, fourth English… Anyway he prepared some materials that didn’t turn out right, and somebody made a crack about “German quality”. Well the East German got all huffy: “what is all zis about ‘German quality’? I’ve never heard of zis ‘German quality’!”

      Upon reflection, that made sense.

    • 0 avatar

      Don’t fool yourself. They may be more meticulous than the competition, but no manufacturer is immune to even the most basic quality issues such as this one.

  • avatar

    You really ought to take this to a certified BMW mechanic to check it out. After all, it’s possible that the “i” is installed correctly, but the entire rest of the car is upside down. That would be a serious safety hazard.

  • avatar

    Did BMW charge you extra?

  • avatar


  • avatar

    Reminds me of the sort of build quality that was once reserved for the Dodge Volare.

  • avatar

    It happens ! When I pick up my ED 335d, the chrome trim on the passenger side rear window is missing. Yup, I have to wait for the vehicle to be re-delivered to get it fixed. This is some BS quality control.

  • avatar
    Spanish Inquisition

    Well, could have been worse. What if you had a 328p?

    … I want a 328d wagon so bad. Diesel wagon manual with leather interior and sporting intentions. Also, because I couldn’t justify a 335d.

  • avatar

    All new cars have some defect. I’ll take that one instead of something mechanical.

    Euros do wagons like we do sport utility vehicles. Our car companies pushed us into “trucks” as they get better CAFE treatments. In Germany we kept seeing an Opel Insignia wagon that was very nice.

    Perception differences….in Europe, a 328! is a big engine, gas gulping car (we see it as the “small” engine)-with fuel prices, almost every car we saw was a diesel.

    We rented a 320d, and friends had a rental 318i. In identical driving, we used two tanks less fuel (@ $140 per tank !!)driving from Berlin to Switzerland. Driving a gas six is like tossing Euro notes out the window as you drive. The 318 returned 32 mpg, and the 320d got 45 mpg, all in autobahn conditions.

    The average american has a better ride than the average euro, hands down. Ignore the occasional high performance special we don’t get.

    After coming back to the States, my 3.0 six BMW was a better ‘drive’ than the four cylinder diesel-for the vast majority of cheap gas americans, the miserly turbodiesel is a no-sale compared to the silky six gas motor.

  • avatar

    328! – way cool! But the nerd in me sees 328 factorial… which is some huge number… which, depending how you decipher BMW names, is their future car or has a huge engine. :P

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