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Entry Level Luxury Performance Sedans

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Comments

  • sweendogysweendogy Posts: 1,052
    Congrats on the kid. Exciting times enjoy. Tsx 2010 wooh - well atleast you have the kid.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,111
    Thanks for the kind words guys. Yes, this past Tuesday my wife gave birth to our little princess who happens to be the 1st girl & 3rd child in our family.

    Sween - buy me a G37X & I'll gladly dump my TSX. If the G37 X would have gotten 1 more stinkin MPG (combined), I would've bought one back in '09. I bought my TSX using a $3500 cash for clunkers credit.

    2001 Honda Prelude Type SH/ 2011 BMW 328xi / 2011 Honda Pilot EX-L w/ Navigation

  • sweendogysweendogy Posts: 1,052
    edited December 2011
    I would not call the tsx a clunker but again congrats on the baby girl. They are the best.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,111
    The clunker was a 1990 E30 BMW 325iA coupe. It only had 82,000 miles on it, but was neglected. I had a new radiator put in, a new set of tires, & an alignment. The car drove great as a BMW should, but it had trouble passing New York State inspection. After it passed, the mechanic said to me that I should either find a donor engine or start paying him to rip out things & replace them with new parts. I knew it was time to "throw the towel in.". Cash 4 Clunkers came out & I had a 2007 X3 with 38,000 miles (with a year to go & 45K miles allowed for the lease).

    I loved the 3 series, but it was out of my price range & too small.

    I drove a Mini Cooper S w/ a 6 speed & didn't like it at all.

    The G37X which I really dig didn't meet the gas mileage requirements for me to get the $3500 credit.

    I drove by the Acura dealer & drove the TSX. I thought it drove like a big, 4 door version of my beloved 2001 Honda Prelude Type SH. I didn't like the electric power steering, but the car was to be my wife's daily driver. It has a huge trunk, room in the back for child safety seats, had thickly bolstered seats, a great engine & transmission combination, transmitted some road feel, I was impressed with the suspension dampening. I bought the car and am extremely happy with it.

    Is a 328i a better driver's car? Absolutely. Is the G37 a balanced handling road rocket? You bet.

    Is my TSX 75-80% of those cars on public roads? I certainly think so.

    2001 Honda Prelude Type SH/ 2011 BMW 328xi / 2011 Honda Pilot EX-L w/ Navigation

  • flightnurseflightnurse at 35K feetPosts: 1,524
    When I bought my BMW I was talking to the sales guy he told me that BMW will finance without stellar credit of a score of 640, but you pay, he quoted me about 8%. However used cars are higher.

    People will buy just to keep up with others. Now an on interesting note, the same sale guy told me that when it comes to the 6 and 7 series cars, he will have more people pay cash for those car then fiance them or lease them.

    5 series its a 50/50 split buy vs lease.
    3 series is 70/30 lease vs buy.
  • sweendogysweendogy Posts: 1,052
    Makes sense - would guess 7 series closer to 70 owned vs lease.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    People will buy to keep up with others? How about "I specifically know of a case where my (friends, neighbors, cousins, uncle etc) bought x car because they were jealous that y person bought z car". Smh.
  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 3,432
    edited December 2011
    Possible interpretation is 3-series is "entry" level, which attracts more people who don't really have the money, so they buy it on payment and 5-series is already out of reach for them.

    It would be interesting to know what is percentage of those 3-series leases with terms like 10K/yr with 4K down - that would be a giveaway of "bologna sandwich budget with caviar taste, I have no money, no clue, but I really want that stuff" people.

    2012 BMW 328i wagon, manual and sports package. No. sold in the US: 1. Probably.

  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 3,432
    People would not admit that openly. All you can do is read the signs, such as how much they make and how much they buy. I know personally several people who would buy stuff they shouldn't - all on debt. Zero savings, zero hedges, just good stuff in the house and house well beyond what they can afford, too. All they talk about is next boat, next sound system. Then occasionally they mention paying off the debt, but it lasts for about two minutes.

    2012 BMW 328i wagon, manual and sports package. No. sold in the US: 1. Probably.

  • sweendogysweendogy Posts: 1,052
    Good point- one of the reasons American economy is failing.
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,207
    edited December 2011
    . . ."bologna sandwich budget with caviar taste, I have no money, no clue, but I really want that stuff" people.

    Their number is legion.

    A number of years ago we lived next door to a couple who "liked nice things." They, in fact, had many more nice things than we did (or do to this day for that matter), but the next few years demonstrated that having them paid for, such that they could be kept, was a whole 'nother thing.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Leasing a car is like renting an apartment. Neither is bad and both have their place. Buying on credit is a personal decision.

    But one has to be responsible whether it is a house, car, work of art, etc. And I don't think people spend money irresponsibly to keep up with the jones'. People just spend money irresponsibly. Just look at the foreclosures.
  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 3,432
    edited December 2011
    You're right, there can be many motivations. "Keeping up" is just one of possibilities. A lot of it may not be linked to particular Jones's, but rather to media image of a successful person. When you looked at lifestyles of characters from many shows and compare with real-life earnings power of their jobs, there is often a large disconnect. However, many people would take that as a validation for their acquisitions. And of course commercials.

    Finishing on lease - it's not the lease itself that is a giveaway, it's the terms. If somebody leases at 0 down for mileage they are actually driving then that's a choice, when they put 4 grand down, 10K miles/year and their commute is 15 miles each way, you know that having car on the driveway was more important that actually driving it. Don't get me wrong - it's their money (or in some cases - it's their not having the money) and their choice to make. But if they wanted to borrow 10 bucks from me, I would automatically assume the likely actual choice here is losing 10 bucks or losing their graces.

    2012 BMW 328i wagon, manual and sports package. No. sold in the US: 1. Probably.

  • sweendogysweendogy Posts: 1,052
    edited December 2011
    with the new 328 coming out soon - and sporting a 4cyl engine, that outperforms the current 6, does this change the way we look at this ELLPS foruM?

    I know audi droped the 6 for the A4 last year, another name which is debateable in this forum has a v6 but 95% of its cars leave with 4cyl- could be interesting to see if nissan goes with a 4 at some point, same with toyota..
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    edited December 2011
    "with the new 328 coming out soon - and sporting a 4cyl engine, that outperforms the current v6, does this change the way we look at this ELLPS foruM?"

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but the 3-Series has never been endowed with a V6; yes, no?

    The above said, as I understand it, the new F30 M3 will feature a blown V6 for motivation.
  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 3,432
    BMW doesn't use V6, it uses I6 (six in line).

    2012 BMW 328i wagon, manual and sports package. No. sold in the US: 1. Probably.

  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Thankfully we're not here to discuss people's motivations, just to discuss the cars. :)
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    "BMW doesn't use V6, it uses I6 (six in line)."

    My point exactly. Unfortunately it seems this is about to change as BMW will start using blown V6 engines for the next generation of M3s.
  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,049
    edited December 2011
    A friend of mine frequently uses the phrase: "There's no replacement for displacement." He is appalled at the number of cars that may offer more than 6 cylinders but rarely sell (or stock) anything other than "blown" I4's, I6's or V6's (both naturally aspirated and forced induction.)

    I tell him that there IS a replacement for displacement and that it is "volumetric efficiency."

    The 211HP 258 pound feet I4 in my 2009 A4 was both quick and fast -- with a 6spd automatic; in the new A4's the engine's rating remains but the car is even quicker, faster and more efficient due to an 8spd automatic.

    In favor of the V8 S4, Audi switched to a super-charged V6; in the S8 Audi has elected to drop 2 cylinders (from 10 to 8) and produce an engine that is both more efficient and more powerful -- considering its size the S8 is a sipper, not a guzzler.

    Only one Acura engine is boosted (the I4 in the RDX), and as far as I know there are no Infiniti engines that are either super or turbo charged.

    The V6 in my 2012 Acura is, frankly, pretty much a basic (but buttery smooth) fuel injected V6 of the modern era. I was wondering what would happen if Acura (Honda) would change to FSI (fuel stratified injection) and super or turbo charge it? Seems to me that with very little effort the engine used today if brought to the current state of the blown art, would put out at least 20% more HP and 10% more torque all the while showing perhaps another +2 MPG's. Then, if they would upgrade the fine 6 speed auto to a current gen 8 speed, any Acura so blessed would go from its current potency (which is very good and is, at this time, Acura's most powerful engine [the 3.7, i.e.]) to high output potency -- in the engine department -- coupled with always being near or at the operating sweet spot due to the increase in the number of gears.

    Think if Infiniti, currently without any forced induction engine offerings, were to begin offering their engines with a super or turbo charger (and also keeping their 7 speed autos) -- makes my head spin.

    The Germans (and even the CTS-V) would have something more to worry about, with all these G's, M's, TL's and RL's armed for bear.

    Will Acura or Infiniti ever up their engine game to this level, or will they take down-tuned engines and alter their breathing and computer maps to get them slightly better than they are now with a touch more grunt in the 0-60 dept? BTW, Infiniti already has a V8, so its creds don't need much engineering brain-power to at least be able to claim "we have V8's" even as they are bested by their very own 6's and 4's.

    I used to assume the car mfgrs read the engthusiasts magazines and the postings here on Edmunds and elsewhere. But, apparentely they don't. If they did and if they were swayed by what is said in both places, well you think they would pay attention and respond (even if only a little bit) to some of the legitmate critiques made by the authors.

    Audi and BMW are unlikely to loose credibility from a "sporting intentioned" family perspective. If someone want's to be certain their car hails from a lineage that includes "winners" and a widely accepted high performance heritage, look no further.

    Acura, perhaps standing all alone, may be shooed from the ELLPS (a.k.a. Premium) board and "chat room" based on its historic but currently all but gone lack of focus. Yet the perception that Acura is a bit fuzzy in the perception of premium department remains for them. The ZDX certainly didn't help and allowing the RL to, more or less, atrophy away hasn't helped either. Of all of these car brands, Acura is in the most peril of losing its way.

    Infiniti and Lexus are mostly safe bets to perservere as players in the ELLPS and LPS field, from what I can tell (although Lexus seems much more the luxury choice than the performance choice, but they are doing a yeoman's job to make this perception go away somewhat.)

    Mercedes, too, a safe bet if what you really want is a bonafide member of the LPS club.

    Volvo is, for the most part, doing what I think Acrua should do -- and that is building a performance image to go hand-in-hand with their safety image. They are about in the same position as Acura, the primary difference is Volvo seems to be really trying to put on a performance face these days.

    Finally the iconic American brand, Cadillac, has demonstrated, these past 3 - 5 years, a penchant for creating an image that may not quite be able to stand toe-to-toe with BMW or Mercedes, for example, but they do keep sneaking up on it with ever more interesting designs and power plants -- including volumetrically enhanced (super-charged) models like the CTS-V.

    We are in a time of inflection -- 2013 model cars are right around the corner and they continue to excite and delight (with the possible exception of Acura).

    So here I sit a guy with a history of 29 Audi's, 3 BMW's, 3 VW's and 1 Acura -- wondering why in the hell I got the Acura. But, truth be told, the Acura is not a boring drive, quite the contrary in fact; however, it is somewhat boring to look at and, that more than anything, may be the crux of the matter.

    :confuse:
  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 3,432
    edited December 2011
    New fuel efficiency standards pushed German manufacturers into new areas of smaller blown engines. It's probably both US and Euro driven. I don't think BMW is going I4 turbo because they want to. They do it because they have to.

    It makes me wonder if lack of such moves on part of Lexus, Infiniti and Acura is because they are considered parts of their parent companies' fleets. If this is the case, it would give them distinct advantage, as lux customer doesn't care about fuel efficiency to same extent as non-luxury. It's not completely non-issue, but it is not a big one.

    2012 BMW 328i wagon, manual and sports package. No. sold in the US: 1. Probably.

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