Well one more victim right here. I live in canada and it gets really darm cold up here. My 328CI started doing this some a couple months ago. I have an appointment at a local BMW shop next week and I'm almost certain that my VANOS will need to be replaced. I will print out your letters and bring them in with me and see what he says. I too am a Mechanical Engineer! Its always nice to see the service rep. squirm when they are dealing with someone who actually knows what the problem is... I will Keep you posted on the outcome.

Thanks a lot for your hard work!
2000 328CI.