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Entry Level Luxury Performance Sedans



  • manavimanavi Posts: 150
    To jagboyxtype:

    You said, "The Infiniti G35 has only sold 8,731 units so far."

    I think it's important to point out the G35 has only been on the market since March 11. In the month of April, Infiniti sold over 3200 G35's.

    I just want to make sure no one is misled by your post.
  • jagboyxtypejagboyxtype Posts: 241
    My point was that the X-TYPE is selling and that there is a larger amount of them on the road right now than there are G35's or CTS's. Blueguydotcom had asked about its sales numbers and had compared how he had seen few X-TYPEs on the road but many more "Bimmers, Lexuses, G35s and CTSes". I just threw in the other cars' numbers to demonstrate that although he may have seen more of some of the other cars, in actuality, there are more X-TYPEs that what he has seen.

    Also, Infiniti sold 3,298 G35's in May 2002. Since its introduction in March, it has sold 8,731 units as recorded in May. Assuming that around 3,298 units would have been sold in January and February had the car been introduced earlier and had a start in sales numbers for January 1 like the others, it would have sold about 15,327 units (3,298 + 3,298 + 8,731 = 15327).
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    The latest sales figures are out. The G35 and Lincoln LS both sold about 3,050 units. Cadillac CTS sold 3,475. IS300 only 2,300.

    BMW sold 9,630 3 Series.
  • jagboyxtypejagboyxtype Posts: 241
    That total for the 3-Series is for all of its variants though, where many of these manufacturers have other models competing for convertible and coupe etc. sales volumes. The 3-Series sedan, which competes against the cars you mentioned sold 6,498 units, about the same number as the Lexus ES 300, which sold 6,477 units in May.
  • kahunahkahunah Posts: 448
    Apparently in 'Racetrack Fantasy Land', torque steer is a problem for some.
  • jagboyxtypejagboyxtype Posts: 241
    I'm just saying that here in sedan vs. sedan form, that is how many 3's were sold. The other variants are countered with other models in the other marques' lineups.

    -The SportCross takes on the 3-Wagons. So do the A4 Avant, V70, C-Class wagons, and the soon to appear X-TYPE Touring.

    -The S4 takes on the M3. There is also a C32 AMG. Later, the X-TYPE R will also join that crowd.

    -The A4 Cabriolet takes sales from the 3-Convertibles.

    -An A4 coupe is on the way, as is the G35 coupe to take one the coupe 3-Series. There are still IS300 coupe rumors, too. To a lesser extent, the C-Class coupe takes on the compact 3-Series in Europe.

    And to top that off, the new Saab 9-3 is a sedan now with a normal trunk.

    By your thinking: "You could almost include the Z3 roadster in the mix, as it shares engines, transmissions, and platform parts", I guess we should include the Camry in the ES300's sales volume since they share those same parts too. How about all of those Jettas, Passats, Beetles, and Golfs that come with that 1.8T engine in the A4? Maybe those should be included too.
  • richard52richard52 Posts: 41
    What is your source when you quote sales figures for the cars in this discussion group? No one has mentioned the AcuraTL. I might assume the TL is a sales leader in this class. Am I rite?
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    AutoSite appears to be one of the better sources for new car sales in USA. Pretty easy to navigate.
  • ickes_mobileickes_mobile Posts: 675
    Honda will reportedly import the JDM/Euro Accord here as the Acura TSX. The TSX would replace the now deceased Integra sedan in the line-up. The JDM/Euro car is expected to debut at the September Paris Auto Show in September and be on sale in NA in 2003 as a 2004 model.
    For more info and some early spy pics from various sources see:

    ickes_mobile "Acura TSX" Jul 30, 2002 12:31pm
  • Okay, my head is spinning. I've spent the past month driving several models, reading reviews, hearing opinions, and , truth is, these cars under consideration all look great. Right now, I'm leaning toward BMW 325i, but the G35 impressed me greatly. Also like the Passat wagon (should I bow to the need for storage space) and the idea of saving several $K can't be ignored. Wife has a 2 year old Acura 3.2CL..wonderfully reliable and comfortable, but the BMW, Infiniti, Audi A4, et al have strong pull in the area of "life is short, go for it". I guess I 'd say I'm looking for a blend of reliability and driving fun. I'd appreciate input from owners of any of the above, recent years' models. Thanks.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    xxoneputtxx... Only you will know what meets your needs within your budget. Do a ton of research. But then spend a lot of time test driving your primary choices. Don't let 'em give you the standard dog and pony test drive. That won't tell you anything. You really need to drive each car some distance on a variety of roads at a variety of speeds.
  • aszasz Posts: 2
    I am looking at purchasing the G as a family sedan. My 3 kids will easily fit in the rear seat. Is this too much of a sports car? I really like the G's lines. Thanks!
  • I can only speak for the choice between the 325 and the A4. Is you're into the hood badge and sound of the exhaust, then the Beemer is your car. If you want a quite similar ride, the equipment of a 330 at the price of a 325, then go for the A4 3.0.

    I drove several '02 325xi's and A4 3.0 Quattro's, and both had their +/-'s. The 325, though, lacks even the most fundamental standard options (no power seats on a $30k+ car!?!?) and has a way to go on the interior design (cheesy exposed cup holders that look like they belong in a Pontiac). Not to mention the 325 has 30% less power to spin those 4 wheels.

    The sad thing is that virtually all luxury sports sedan reviews compare a $40k+ loaded 330 with a $33k A4, and the 325 is declared the de facto winner as it rides on the tails of the 330. The whole "3-series" nomenclature is nonsense.

    Take an A4 3.0 out for a test drive...
  • I beleive the handling of the BMW is slightly better because of it's small size. I would like to see how it would handle if it were a midsize car (like the Infiniti G35 or Acura TL).

    The amount of 'points' that are giving to the BMW for it's handling should be removed for it's size. This is a sedan! It is not a sports car. When talking about sedans, sufficient room in the car should be seen as an important factor.

    I'm sure they could make the BMW even smaller and get even better handling and performance from it. If they did that, it would be hard to justify it even being in this category.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    rp - you are correct the 330i is a sedan, just like the G35, just like the Acura, just like the Audi and all of the cars that were compared in the latest Edmunds round-up. None of them are sports cars. Edmunds calls them Entry Level Luxury Sport Sedans. The fact is the 530i also gets very high marks in the performance department, except the 530i is a true Luxury Sport Sedan, again not a sports car.

    Now the 530i outclasses all of the above in terms of amenities, but it would be interesting to see from a strict performance viewpoint, how it compares to the above or even compares to the 330i.

    Although in the scheme of things size has little to do with performance - as another poster pointed out there are cars the same size as the 330i that are nowhere near it in terms of overall performance. Note the salient word is overall.

    Also the fact that it is a compact has nothing to do with it's interior room. The G does not have marginally much more room and if you read Edmunds round-up, it does state there is sufficient room in the car for 4 adults in the 330i. Unless you regularly transport 5 people and the two people in the back seat absolutely have to have the reclining seats, in my opinion the amount of extra space in the G doesn't make that much of a difference. It might to you, but then you get to vote with your dollars. If I regularly transported 5 people however, none of the cars in the Edmunds round-up would be on my list.

    It seems clear to me based on the reviews I've read over the last couple of years, when only talking about the sport of driving in this segment, the 330i is the benchmark.
  • Some Acuras are experiencing very serious problems with their automatic transmissions shifting from 5th to 2nd at high speeds for no aparent reason. This causes the cars to lose control and swerve off the road.

    "Mike Spencer, a spokesman for Acura, Honda's sport-luxury division, confirmed that there has been a 'higher than normal incidence' of problems with two Honda-built automatic transmissions. Although many involve high-performance models such as the 260-horsepower Acura Type-S, others afflict 200-horsepower V-6 Honda Accords and 240-horsepower Odyssey minivans not usually associated with racing and speeding abuses."

    "The two transmissions are the five-speed used in V-6-equipped Acuras since the 2000 model year and in Honda Odysseys since the 2002 model year; and the four-speed automatic used in V-6 Honda Accords since 2000 and in 2000 and 2001 Odysseys."

  • I am having the hardest time choosing a replacement for my 3 year old (leased) Saab 9-3SE. I've narrowed it down to the BMW 325i, Mercedes C240, and VW Passat GLX. They all excel, but in different ways. I've driven all 3 several times and still cannot decide. Here are my thoughts, and I'd appreciate comments from others:

    325i pros
    fun to drive and handles well
    like the sound of the inline 6-cyl. engine
    holds its value well
    nice safety features
    good reliability record

    325i cons
    many on the road
    styling not that exciting any more

    Mercedes C240 pros
    styling (in my opinion)
    solid as a vault
    nice ride and handling
    safety features

    C240 Cons
    slightly underpowered
    quality concerns (at least from early models)

    Passat GLX pros
    great looks
    cheaper than BMW or Mercedes
    decent power and handling

    Passat GLX cons
    dealer service (from what I've heard)
    seats not the best (in my opinion)
    soft ride (i.e. not a "sports sedan")
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Add the following cons to the Mercedes and VW:

    - in my area there are many on the road, diminishing the value.

    Seriously - I think you have to focus on what's important to you. Is fun to drive, hold's value and good safety features important? Or is styling important and the fact there are many on the road an important criteria because you want a unique vehicle.

    Just as a suggestion, if you phrased the question differently rather than giving your opinion about the importantance of certain car attributes you might get some very meaningful responses.

    For me important questions might be:

    1. Has anybody had any reliability issues with any of these cars? How did the dealers respond?
    2. What do others think about the seating in the vehicles?
    3. How much did people pay?

    Good luck with your decision.
  • kdshapiro - thanks for your post.

    I'm finding that it's very hard to judge reliability from the internet message boards. I've read horror stories on the internet for all three cars. People with problems are more likely to post a message than those without problems. Consumer Reports recommends all three cars. I personnally know one person with a C240 and one with a C320 wagon. Both love their cars, but haven't had them too long.

    I made a mistake with my current car and am determined not to do it again. I want to get something I don't mind paying for, want to keep for many years, and want to keep shiny. The problem is all three of these are great cars.
  • These are three pretty different cars, so it really comes down to what you value. The Passat is a real bargain with the nicest and largest interior as well as elegant exterior styling. I looked hard at a GLX and W8 when I was shopping. The handling is pretty wallowing, and the power is just adequate (I'm a leadfoot ).

    The 325i is fun and rewarding to drive, really nice handling and ergonomics. Its pretty small and the price goes up fast as you add options, and its also underpowered for my taste.

    I've never driven the C240. The C320 I drove was nice, but not terribly sporty and I was disappointed in the quality of some of the interior pieces (they need to see where VW gets their switches).

    All three a very good cars, I could be happy with any of them based on my needs.
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