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      07-29-2012, 07:36 PM   #1
fs454
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Driving my new '09 135 up the coast from FL to MA tomorrow. Never driven one. Tips?

All the pondering, searching, slaving, waiting, and buying has been done and I finally own a 135i! CPO'ed, Alpine White, Coral Red, M-Sport and Premium packages,6-speed manual, 25,000 on the clock. Still hasn't hit me yet.

I'm flying out of Boston at 7:30AM tomorrow and landing in Tampa at noon to pick it up from the awesome guys at Bert Smith BMW where I will sit in a 1-series for the first time, which also happens to be the first manual car I've owned. Got a lot riding on this thing to make such a huge purchase without even seeing one in person let alone driving one, but hey that's the fun of it since they're so uncommon around here. I've driven stick before, just not for more than ten minutes at a time...so that will be interesting. hah.

Anyways, anyone have tips or anything for the 1300 mile road trip in the 1er? I have a driving buddy and plan on doing this in a fairly quick two days, give or take a few hours, with a stop to sleep somewhere along the way. If anyone's done a drive like this up the coast, any specific cities to avoid? I plan on going as far around NYC as possible as my last trek down that way for Waterfest last year was horrible.

I've got a Valentine 1, GPS, and LTE-enabled iPad but I feel like I'm going into this somewhat unprepared because I have so much tech with me, hah.

Thanks in advance and it already feels awesome owning a 1.
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      07-29-2012, 08:01 PM   #2
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I envy you and the surprise that awaits. You have no idea.... and that's coming from a 128 driver who has driven the 135. Make the radar install a priority...

Just relax and enjoy the drive. I drove my 128 from PA to WA and back within 2 weeks and as soon as I got home and got the car unloaded I uh, went for a drive. If you're a noob to the 135 you are going to be laughing out loud the whole trip, not to mention when your foot mashes the throttle for the first time. You'll say it's the most fun you can have with yer clothes on!

Of course if you're coming from a 335 or Z4M the feeling won't be as acute - but you'll still be impressed and you'll still have a blast.

Make sure you have the warranty info with you, especially if you just bought it. If you need service, having the paperwork handy that says you're entitled to warranty work is essential especially if you yourself are unfamiliar with its (HPFP) service history. It would suck to have a HPFP failure and have the dealer 'need to verify' the warranty. As a side note, make sure both keyfobs are current.

For me, I set my GPS to 'shortest distance' not 'shortest time'. Keeps me off the interstates and on the back roads. It's fun downshifting into 4th/3rd (in a 128 anyway) and cruising through these small towns at 45-50. Kinda gives a rest ya know?

Spend some time getting to know your seats - on a long trip I find it best to have a couple different settings so as to give some variety to your posture. If you have the seat memory, take advantage of it and set up a couple different comfortable settings. It might take a little time to dial in the right fit; when you do, with the sport seats you'll feel like you're wearing the car not driving it.


I'm old school - I packed a quart of oil, brake and PS fluid, and all my detailing supplies

Here's a video of a coast-to-coast trip.

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      07-29-2012, 08:03 PM   #3
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Done that drive a few times myself. Pay special attention around Va and Delaware. They live off of out of state ticket revenues. Also, radar detectors are illegal in Va, dont get caught with one. If they see it mounted they will pull you over.
Stay at a decent place off 95 and try to park near the front in the lights where there is more traffic. Cars can be fucked with by vermin along the route. They know that vacationers with money and stuff in their cars stay there. Take your electronics in the room with you and anything else valuable.

After an hour or so driving a stick is second nature, especially in flat Fl.

Avoid the loop around DC, traffic can be brutal.
Take the Chespeake tunnel, it saves time.

I've gotten mislabled gas at some of the no brand stations along 95. Stay with the known names and get 93oct.

Congrats on your new car and have a good trip.
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      07-29-2012, 08:10 PM   #4
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Yeah - don't forget to pack extra washer fluid - this time of year you'll need it especially at dusk.

As far as major metropolitan areas, most of them have bypasses so its really more a question of timing. Try and plan so you're not hitting rush hour. If you have access to a traffic-enabled GPS it can be a godsend.

Unless a large city is in the middle of the 'as the crow flies' path, your GPS will keep you away from them if set to shortest distance. You'll end up on a lot of 2-way roads, with a lot of opportunities to pass which will be no problem in your 135 (it wasn't in my 128...) and you'll see parts of the country you won't see on the interstates. And, for me, the difference in time (shortest distance vs fastest route) cross country, mind you, was less than an hour out of almost 50.
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      07-29-2012, 08:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NYC6 View Post
Also, radar detectors are illegal in Va, dont get caught with one. If they see it mounted they will pull you over.Congrats on your new car and have a good trip.
I think they can tell if you have one on even if they can't see it. They have a detector detector.... stiff fines and it really pisses them off.
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      07-29-2012, 08:17 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by dorkdog View Post
I think they can tell if you have one on even if they can't see it. They have a detector detector.... stiff fines and it really pisses them off.
good point.
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      07-29-2012, 08:22 PM   #7
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Yeah I've read on the forums that the Valentine One can be easily detected by the detectors they use in VA. I think only 2 detectors exist that are undetectable.
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      07-29-2012, 08:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dorkdog View Post
You have no idea....
Agreed. This will be a journey you'll never forget. The thrill of getting to know your 135...on a road trip with your bud.
Like others, I envy you. Enjoy the cruise...don't try to set any records (you are, after all, just getting to know your
new baby) and be careful. As you're aware - being the owner of a V1 - the revenue generators are everywhere. Don't
give them the satisfaction. Have the time of your life!
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      07-29-2012, 09:34 PM   #9
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As others have said, be careful in VA, the police there are very aggressive about speeding and will happily slap you with large fines and points. Once you get to the Richmond area, expect traffic that ranges from significant to stationary for a good while, it will likely be that way until you clear the beltway and get past baltimore. Annoying, but it's the nature of the area, lots and lots of traffic/road work in DMV area. Enjoy the drive and your car!
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      07-29-2012, 09:47 PM   #10
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If you break off 95 east of Raleigh and head up thru Norfolk, you can rejoin 95 above Baltimore in Delaware somewhere. Adds another 10-15 miles to the trip. Probably a nicer drive with some water views.
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      07-29-2012, 09:52 PM   #11
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Here is the route I'd probably take. A little longer but avoids all the big towns. I take all my trips this way; the variety keeps me up and busy and I like to see/stop at out of the way places.

http://classic.mapquest.com/mq/2-TahCaIh7TZ3*
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      07-29-2012, 10:17 PM   #12
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Congrats! Hope to see that car around here in MA. I would take some time and maybe put some tape over the front end to protect from rock chips.

Last edited by Trptguy; 07-29-2012 at 10:25 PM.
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      07-29-2012, 10:34 PM   #13
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Congrats ! BMW mobility kit since you never know, even if you have run flats. You can pick one up at the dealer. Extra drinking water and a camera to catch that 1st grin
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      07-30-2012, 04:49 AM   #14
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As for cities to avoid, it just depends when your hitting them. If you are approaching a major city and it is near the common rush hour times, try to take the bypass.

Jacksonville comes to mind as one of the worse ones. I usually take 295 around Jax no matter what since they have been doing construction on I95 in jax for about 20 years, so theres almost always a bottle neck somewhere. 295 is almost always smooth sailing.

In GA and NC you will hit stand still traffic, just about no matter what time you are driving. There is a stretch of construction that just seems to move up and down I95 in these states, and has always been that way. Nothing you can do really to avoid it, but just so you know what it is if/when you hit it.

In order to use the V1 effectively, find a "rabbit" to chase. POP radar has become very very common. The troopers like to hide in the median of I95 in the emergency turn arounds completely concealed by trees. If you have someone a few hundred yards in front of you and they get hit with the POP radar you will get the early alert. If no one in front of you, then you will get hit with it with no warning.

I cant count how many times I have driven up and down the 95 corridor. Its not that bad, can be boring at times, but usually is uneventful. I usually drive stright through (Richmond, VA- Key West, FL) pack the tunes, and if you get tired start listening to either some abnoxious house/techno music, or I find that funny talk shows usually keep my concentration.

Enjoy the ride man.

Also, as always, I highly recommend a AAA membership. They have helped me out so many times its not even funny.
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      07-30-2012, 08:13 AM   #15
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I LOVE this. Congrats on making such a leap. I don't think you'll regret it. (Just get some good snow tires for this winter).

If you're at all interested, I would hit up the BMW plant in Greenville SC. It's absolutely impressive. I believe you can do the "BMW experience" too if you pay for it? I dunno. An absolutely MUST for you though is to hit the blue ridge parkway. It's a little out of your way, and definitely not as fast as the highway, but who wants to drive in a straight line and get stuck in traffic anyway?
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      07-30-2012, 08:21 AM   #16
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I would have absolutely suggested the Blue Ridge Parkway also, but the OP's schedule doesn't appear
to allow the time needed for that "must" road trip on this run. Put it on the schedule!!!
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      07-30-2012, 09:19 AM   #17
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Thanks a ton guys for the tips, I'm sitting on the plane now and I'll update this thread along the way!
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      07-30-2012, 10:22 AM   #18
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Might be too late but Google shows the quickest way is I-95 but I don't really like I-95. You can add about 90 miles and about an hour by taking I-81 beginning in SC (you take I-26 to Columbia, pick up I-77 to Charlotte and then get on I-81) and continuing all the way to NYC. It would take you out of some of the major east coast cities. I've driven I-81 from Charlotte up most of the way through Virginia and it is much more interesting than I-95, at least to me. You are on an interstate but the interstate is going through the mountains.

Something to consider. Charlotte will be a mess if you do this but after you clear Charlotte your next major city is NYC. Charlotte is not all that bad if you just avoid rush hour. If you decide to go this way, you would be somewhat close to the Osceola Mill, a nice B&B just off the Blue Ridge Parkway and between I-81 and the parkway. I didn't map out where you will be after 12 hours or so driving but if it's in this area it would be a nice place to stop. Their restrauant is great and the owners are very nice.

Jim
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      07-30-2012, 10:32 AM   #19
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I'd buy a roll of clear film for the front to help prevent rock chips. Or, buy a bra from the dealer. That's a long stretch, with lots of semi's spitting up pebbles.
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      07-30-2012, 11:58 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimD View Post
Might be too late but Google shows the quickest way is I-95 but I don't really like I-95. You can add about 90 miles and about an hour by taking I-81 beginning in SC (you take I-26 to Columbia, pick up I-77 to Charlotte and then get on I-81) and continuing all the way to NYC. It would take you out of some of the major east coast cities. I've driven I-81 from Charlotte up most of the way through Virginia and it is much more interesting than I-95, at least to me. You are on an interstate but the interstate is going through the mountains.

Something to consider. Charlotte will be a mess if you do this but after you clear Charlotte your next major city is NYC. Charlotte is not all that bad if you just avoid rush hour. If you decide to go this way, you would be somewhat close to the Osceola Mill, a nice B&B just off the Blue Ridge Parkway and between I-81 and the parkway. I didn't map out where you will be after 12 hours or so driving but if it's in this area it would be a nice place to stop. Their restrauant is great and the owners are very nice.

Jim
I've gone this way countless times as saves time compared to going up 95 but there is almost nothing out there in the country and the cops in VA are just as bad on 81 as they are on 95. So depends on if the OP wants cities, country or coast. If you do go up 95 northern VA has the cheapest gas on the trip.
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      07-30-2012, 12:10 PM   #21
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Avoid the cross-Bronx (I 95s cut through NYC) like the plague. It will be a bit more mileage, but you should take the tapenzee bridge over the hudson. Doing that also gives you the opportunity to take one of my favourite highways in the northeast - I 684 to the merit parkway to the willbur cross to I-84 to the mass pike into boston.

But if you hit NYC at rush hour best to take the throughway (I 87) straight up to the 84 junction and avoid NYC totally



And I almost forgot. Don't speed in Jersey! Jersey troopers are jackasses
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      07-30-2012, 01:56 PM   #22
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Dont forget to use 91+ octane
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