Originally Posted by Dwn2Race
Nothing new. My 2002 330ci can increase speed and decrease speed depending if im pushing the cruise control forward or backwards. And how does a car decrease speed(brakes).
No, the E46 doesn't decelerate using the brakes via the cruise control stalk. It is a combination of engine braking, rolling resistance, and air resistance. These factors are the same ones that make you slow down if you lift off the throttle (aka coasting). It is very noticeable when the car is braking vs coasting.
OP: Yes the cruise control will brake for you if you hold down on the cruise control stalk. It is quite handy as it slows you down quickly without turning off cruise control.