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New 350R HEP owner in NY

NPTR

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Hey guys - quick intro to a long time listener, first time caller! Have been in the market for a 350R on/off for ~3-4 years now, and finally pulled the trigger on one. Purchased a 2020 GT350R Heritage Edition from the guys at JLD down in FL, and I'm taking delivery to Long Island, NY this week. It's a been a long journey, and my love affair with this vehicle started a long time ago, so I'm fired up to finally have one in the stable!

Been a "car guy" for as long as I can remember...aside from the "beaters" I had out of the gate (manual civic, manual jeep, etc.), I started with JDM vehicles given the tuning value on a budget (WRX, STi), then got into German (GTI, R32, JLI, M3), but always lusted for American muscle. My father had a GT500 growing up that we worked on together over the years, we even took a trip to Ford HQ to meet the person who assembled his engine...growing up with Shelby "art" covering our walls, I just knew I had to have one of my own one day. My first Mustang was an '03 Mach 1...that shaker hood was just so damn cool...but as I got older, I got more interested in track-oriented performance, and I haven't owned a mustang since. The GT350 changed everything for me!

I'm on a mission to build a garage of unique experiences over the next ~5 years, all of which are increasingly rare and likely going extinct given the direction of the auto industry. I currently own a '20 BMW M2 CS (manual in Misano Blue w/ the carbon ceramic brakes) and daily a Tacoma TRD Pro (6 speed, of course!). Something American, something JDM (likely GTR), and a 911 (likely GT3) were the last three on the list...and the 350 had to come first. Can't wait to have her in the garage, and look forward to becoming part of this community. Sure I'll meet many of you in the years to come as I am never selling this thing! I firmly believe this is a "once in a generation" car, and if all goes well in my life, she'll be passed to my kids when I'm long gone.

Some pics of her at the dealership below, will send some updates once I take delivery. Big shout out to the guys at JLD, incredible experience working with them so far and they source some super clean, low-mile GT350Rs.

-Chris

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Champale

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Congratulations! You have great taste in cars! Curious to see how your M2 CS compares to the Shelby. I think I already know (and it's going to mean the BMW collects dust).
 

The_Mad_Patcher

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Welcome. Best of luck. Enjoy!
 
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NPTR

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Thanks guys, appreciate the kind words! It's not that one...mine has 1300 miles on her, enough to be past break-in / not pay some insane collector premium. Fired up for this thing...the previous owner was a real enthusiast and I love that, guy had the window sticker framed and a chassis-specific vest made...exactly what I want to see haha.

Car will be staying largely stock, mainly OEM+. She already has all the stuff you want to see on a car owned by someone who knew what they're doing...passenger-side FP catch can, BMR jacking rails, Jaeger Brothers rock guards, etc.

I purchased a driver-side catch can, but TBD on if I install it based on what I've read here. Also have hood struts going on the day she gets here. Aside from little stuff like that, she'll stay how Ford Performance intender her to be!
 

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Postal Bob

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Congrats, and looking foward to seeing you at some of the car shows here on LI. Some good ones here, along with some all Ford/Mustang shows.
 

TonyNJ

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Nice find and buy. What's the chassis #? Welcome to the R club and the Heritage club. It's a good time.
 
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NPTR

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Nice find and buy. What's the chassis #? Welcome to the R club and the Heritage club. It's a good time.
Thank you, appreciate this! LR149 is the chassis number. Was hunting for an HEP for a long time, but wanted a sweet spot that was harder to find. Felt like guys either had ZERO mile cars for crazy numbers (not relevant for me as I wanted to drive mine moderately and not keep the plastic on it), or cars with a bit more miles on them but history / legacy I couldn't verify. This one fit the bill of enthusiast owned/cared for, solid history, and enough miles to remove the museum grade premium but still low enough to essentially feel new.

I didn't pay asking price...but out of respect for the dealer, I wont tell you what the number actually was. That said, even if I paid their ask, I still think it's worth it. Rare car that will likely never be made again, rare/special spec, last model year, the list goes on. One of the many reasons I plan to keep this car forever. Aside from that, every single car I have owned in my past was worth significantly more than I paid for it at time of sale...E30 M3, E46 M3, MKIV R32, M2C, S5, Mach 1, even my current cars (someone just offered me $45K for my Taco I bought for $25K!). While I don't view my vehicles as "investments" in the traditional sense, I have a pretty solid track record of picking winners...so I wouldn't worry about my vehicle value judgements. Moving on to the positive stuff I came here for...


One pretty cool thing I didn't expect is the outpouring of love on my BMW forum for the 350R. Posted a note up there updating that community on my M2s new garage mate...I expected to get a lot of pushback on there from guys questioning the decision, asking why I didn't go E90/E92 M3, etc. I was dead wrong...25+ notes on there of guys confessing their love for the 350R. While I don't need anyone's validation (I KNOW the 350R is one of the best sports cars ever made), it says a lot that this car like good music/art has cut across all car communities and is so universally loved...fired up to get here, and really appreciate all the kind words...look forward to seeing you guys around!
 

ScottyRyan2018

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Thank you, appreciate this! LR149 is the chassis number. Was hunting for an HEP for a long time, but wanted a sweet spot that was harder to find. Felt like guys either had ZERO mile cars for crazy numbers (not relevant for me as I wanted to drive mine moderately and not keep the plastic on it), or cars with a bit more miles on them but history / legacy I couldn't verify. This one fit the bill of enthusiast owned/cared for, solid history, and enough miles to remove the museum grade premium but still low enough to essentially feel new.

I didn't pay asking price...but out of respect for the dealer, I wont tell you what the number actually was. That said, even if I paid their ask, I still think it's worth it. Rare car that will likely never be made again, rare/special spec, last model year, the list goes on. One of the many reasons I plan to keep this car forever. Aside from that, every single car I have owned in my past was worth significantly more than I paid for it at time of sale...E30 M3, E46 M3, MKIV R32, M2C, S5, Mach 1, even my current cars (someone just offered me $45K for my Taco I bought for $25K!). While I don't view my vehicles as "investments" in the traditional sense, I have a pretty solid track record of picking winners...so I wouldn't worry about my vehicle value judgements. Moving on to the positive stuff I came here for...


One pretty cool thing I didn't expect is the outpouring of love on my BMW forum for the 350R. Posted a note up there updating that community on my M2s new garage mate...I expected to get a lot of pushback on there from guys questioning the decision, asking why I didn't go E90/E92 M3, etc. I was dead wrong...25+ notes on there of guys confessing their love for the 350R. While I don't need anyone's validation (I KNOW the 350R is one of the best sports cars ever made), it says a lot that this car like good music/art has cut across all car communities and is so universally loved...fired up to get here, and really appreciate all the kind words...look forward to seeing you guys around!
That's a great looking GT350R!

I sold my 2022 Mustang ( a car I loved) and bought this 2024 M2 as I've always wanted an M2. I only have a couple hundred miles on it so it's too soon for a side-by-side comparison but once I get the 1,200 mile break-in done I'll write something up.

Congrats again and enjoy that carđź‘Ť
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NPTR

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That's a great looking GT350R!

I sold my 2022 Mustang ( a car I loved) and bought this 2024 M2 as I've always wanted an M2. I only have a couple hundred miles on it so it's too soon for a side-by-side comparison but once I get the 1,200 mile break-in done I'll write something up.

Congrats again and enjoy that carđź‘Ť
Congrats! Incredible machines for sure…I’ll always be a huge BMW fan, especially F8X generation and older (E46 my favorite looking, E9X best sounding, F8X best all around IMO). They are precise and refined feeling but still super playful when you want it to be. Going to write something up as well soon after I have more time behind the 350…as of now just the drive back home from the parking lot where the delivery guy dropped her (my street was too small for a 70’ semi!). It was an epic 5 mins…and my early impression is the following analogy - if the M2 is a scalpel / rifle, the 350R is a boot knife / shotgun…they both get the job done, but the impact, the experience, the “theater” of this car is just a totally different thing. Once we get a nice day and I really lay into her, will post something more detailed here!
 

Champale

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Wait until you get to drive your 350R hard . . . they get sharper and more precise feeling the harder you drive. It will surprise you. Plus, you get the best exhaust note ever combined with one of the nicest shift actions and great seats.
 
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NPTR

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Wait until you get to drive your 350R hard . . . they get sharper and more precise feeling the harder you drive. It will surprise you. Plus, you get the best exhaust note ever combined with one of the nicest shift actions and great seats.
Oh yes - going to write up more on first impressions soon but holy **** that transmission is perfection and the Recaros are incredible. All the focus on lackluster interior quality are unfounded in my opinion. I mean, I get it, it’s not a Mercedes in there…but I don’t want it to be. I understand where it comes from, but as far as I’m concerned they nailed all the important input points (wheels, shifter, seats), and the stuff that’s lower quality is nowhere near enough to take away from anything at all. If you’re focused on the dashboard plastic, you’re missing the whole point of this thing…

This car is nuts, can’t wait to get on her - will be back with more!
 
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NPTR

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Any updates? :)
Intended on posting something more detailed this summer after a few good photo opportunities, but for now, some quick thoughts for now...

THE GOOD: All interaction points are phenomenal...steering, handling, transmission, brakes, seats, etc...10/10 where it really counts, and this transmission just feels absolutely stellar. Car's "dual personality" potential with the adjustable suspension and exhaust valves is impressive, and something I didn't expect (very helpful for when I'm pulling into the garage late night!). The engine has significantly exceeded my expectations, from sound to power delivery, holy **** it's fantastic and I just don't think something like this will roll off the production line again...it's truly a once in a generation package. Potentially best manual trans I've ever driven, and these brakes rival the carbon ceramics on my M2 CS, and that was a $10K option. Exhaust note matters a lot to me for the emotion/thrill it adds to the drive, and outside of the LFA I think this has to be the best sounding car I've ever heard for me personally. I love looking at it from every angle, and that's rare...usually there's some angle I'm not crazy about, and that's not the case with this car. It's presence / stance is so incredible, and I know a car is special to me when I can just sit there, have a beer and stare at it, or thoroughly enjoy a deep detail session with some good music playing (my alone time with her haha). One of my favorite parts of the driving experience is the aggressive downshifts...now that I have my rev matching down, it's just perfect...like a whip crack, so thrilling.

THE MIXED: I'm being nit picky here, none of this really matters to me given the above! Interior quality / general build quality things bug me. Things like a "plasticy" feeling center console and cheap padding on the door cards bother me a bit. Little things I've had to "upgrade" as well are surprising...like that cheap plastic dead pedal...on a car of this level, that's not something I should have to do. I wish the stripes were painted and not vinyl, but is what it is. The other obvious one is body panel gap / alignment...the more I look at it, the more I notice. Again, nothing huge, and when you consider what you get with this package for the price, if all this other stuff was made perfect, you're looking at a $100K+ MSRP car...and that would have made it so much less cool / unique. I thought I would be swapping the tires right away given overkill for the street, but think I can live with them for now and will just swap when due.

Simply put, absolutely loving this beast and I can confidently say, I'm never selling her. It checks all the right boxes for me, and is an endangered species soon to be extinct (from the new lineup), making it even more special to me and something I want to have in the garage forever. What Ford was able to accomplish here is truly impressive. I always knew I wanted to have one Mustang in the lineup...and given my childhood obsession I assumed that would be a Terminator Cobra...but the GT350R changed everything for me, and I wouldn't change a thing about it. I love the HEP spec, the color is truly special / unique and I like the more understated seats / blue accents. Also, carbon dash raises the feel of the interior a bit and I'm very happy with that.

A+ all around, couldn't be happier, and if I don't my weekly "fix" I start going through withdrawal, that's telling me something. Now I need to get the M2 CS out of storage and put a louder exhaust on it ASAP haha.

-Chris
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