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Entry Level Luxury Performance Sedans



  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,106
    These crash tests do change ALL THE TIME. Just because the car I'm looking at didn't do well in the latest "test" wouldn't detract me from buying it. I consider Mercedes-Benz to be at the fore front of safety. I remember my 2007 X3 got either a "5 star" or "best pick" safety rating, then in 2008 the X3's ranking went way down. Am I to think that a 2008 X3 is a death trap compared to the 2007 I had? I don't think so.

    Next year it will be the IIHS "BatWing Test" where the Mercedes-Benz C-Class performed better than every luxury brand in protecting occupants when Batman's "BatWing" is dropped on top of it.

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

  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,897
    "I remember my 2007 X3 got either a "5 star" or "best pick" safety rating, then in 2008 the X3's ranking went way down. Am I to think that a 2008 X3 is a death trap compared to the 2007 I had? I don't think so."

    It's a long way from "the rating went down" to "death trap". Wow, exaggeration to make a point is always helpful, right? The tests are what they are and they don't change substantially from year to year and they apply to all manufacturers equally. Are they perfect? No, but they are better than nothing. Some of the comments here sound like Mercedes. If one doesn't like the results the tests are flawed. If a manufacturer at least, makes it safe enough to get a good rating I would have to believe it is a little safer than one that didn't. Please notice I said a "little safer". The ratings don't go from "you will not be harmed" directly to "death trap". Pleeeease.
  • flightnurseflightnurse at 35K feetPosts: 1,523
    Hey NYC, some thing else to loo into, the 650i weights more then you 328, this will offset how is handles too.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,897
    I have to temper my last post with the understanding that the frontal crash test was in fact substantially changed and is now an offset front end crash against a stationary object. The old test simulated a headon with another vehicle. Don't know what changed from 2007 to 2008 though. Still, the fact remains the test applies to all equally and that these ratings do not go from absolutely safe to death trap as there are gradations and even the lowest rating would not be classified as inherently unsafe.
  • jeffm5jeffm5 Posts: 106
    I've had the S60 for 3 weeks and I'm very happy with my choice. I test drove a LaCrosse, VW CC, Tauras, Azera. I've always been impressed with the ES 350, but there are so many of them here in Western PA. I wanted something different.

    Before I give my impressions of the S60 there a couple things you need to know. I was coming out of a 2005 Avalon Limited, which was a great car. This is a loaded 2013 and is my first "luxury/near luxury car." The front seat comfort for both the passenger and driver are outstanding. All of the controls are on the steering wheel or within easy reach. Handling is outstanding, power and acceleration are very good (this is my first turbo). Visibility is very good. The car has a solid feel. No rattles. The ride is a little choppy on rough roads, very good otherwise. I'm getting 30+ on the highway at about 65 mph and around 24 in mixed driving on regular.

    The phone, radio, NAV, etc. are accessed through the Volvo Sensus system, which works fine once you get past the learning curve. Our cell phones, iTouch work fine. The Sensus/NAV screen is not a touch screen. It's 7 inches. I wish it was a little larger. The tach. and speedometer are not backlit. The interior has that orderly understated look, but, not surprisingly, lacks "bling". Sensus is voice activated and works very well.

    I got all of the safety features, all of which seem to work as advertised. Two of the best are adaptive cruise control and active bending Xenon headlights. I find lane departure annoying, so I've shut it off. I don't let any of these "safety nannies" drive the car for me, but if they can give me a heads up, I'll take it.

    On the downside are a tight back seat and no spare. There is an inflation kit in the trunk. This was almost a deal breaker for me. The dealer threw in a donut spare, which comes in a fabric zip bag and is strapped down in the trunk, a + $200 option. This makes a smallish trunk even smaller.

    Volvo offers the Safe and Secure plan, which covers maintenance and repairs (even brakes) for 5 yrs. or 50,000 miles. (Tires are not covered under this plan.)

    The car is very fun to drive and I'm happy with it. Hope this helps.
  • sweendogysweendogy Posts: 1,052
    Jeffm - thanks for the review - I found it interesting the cars you cross shopped this against - Taurus and azera - cars that when you think about them seem to be in a different category but when you dive deep they are very similar - why not another Avalon , seems like Toyota improved a bit on the old one and it's a very near cousin to the es.

    The spare tire thing for Me would of been an issue as well- the Volvo have run flats?

    Good luck with the new rig- refreshing to see a newer car talked about here.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,106
    My exaggeration was an attempt at humor that obviously didn't translate well given the medium. I know the car was by no means considered a death trap.

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

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,106
    Fantastic write up Jeff. Glad you are happy with your S60;)

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

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 13,585
    I parked next to a black S60 with the saddle interior yesterday. Very sharp.

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (when daughter lets me see it), 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again), and new Jetta SE (son's first new car on his own dime!)

  • kyfdx@Edmundskyfdx@Edmunds Posts: 25,881

    Moderator - Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • fedlawmanfedlawman Posts: 3,118
    edited August 2012
    Auto start-stop was a little weird to me when I first got the Malibu Hybrid. Now I rarely notice it.

    It may seem like an annoyance, but in real-life, it's a non-issue.
  • jeffm5jeffm5 Posts: 106
    We would have loved another Avalon and were looking forward to the 2013. Problem is the the front grill design, which we think is ugly. (No offense to those who find it sharp. These things are very subjective.)

    BTW, the LaCrosse is an impressive car, but those wide A pillars were a deal breaker.
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 7,600
    The tests are what they are and they don't change substantially from year to year.

    Actually this this is a modification to an existing test. Years ago the IIHS decided that the head on test done by the government wasn't real world enough so they came out and tested offset crashes. The performance of most cars was poor so it forced automakers to design to get a good rating on this test.

    Now the IIHS has moved the target and changed the offset test from moderate overlap to small overlap. The moving target is the way the insurance industry gets the automakers to keep making vehicles safer in order to reduce the payouts they have to make.
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 6,894
    edited August 2012
    Hey Jeff...welcome. Nice write up on your new Volvo. Congratulations.

    Ray....thanks for the update. The couple of times I drove the new BMWs with the start/stop feature, left a very negative impression. Glad to see BMW recognizes they have a lot of work to do on the "feature" and has offered a way to permanently defeat it.

    Frankly, I'm surprised it made it past engineering at BMW given how poorly the feature operates (as in, it shudders the entire car).
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,653
    I'd like to see a cost/benefit analysis; how long will it take to pay for itself.

    I admit I haven't follow this technology, but I can't image it saving a huge amount of fuel. Plus I'm from the old school where it's ingrained that starting an engine equates to damage done (excessive wear).
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,386
    I admit I haven't follow this technology, but I can't image it saving a huge amount of fuel.

    It would think depends on your driving environment. I could see start/stop saving 15-20% on fuel in traffic prone urban/suburban areas but out in the boonies perhaps less than 10%.
  • kyfdx@Edmundskyfdx@Edmunds Posts: 25,881
    I think if you have a hybrid that already runs occasionally with the gas engine off... .it's no big deal... And, either way, you could probably get used to it....

    But, I hated it, especially with the 4-cylinder.... and, if you had to disable it every time you started the car, that would be a non-starter for me... (pun intended, naturally..)

    Moderator - Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • sweendogysweendogy Posts: 1,052
    Let me jump in here about the great BMW and its auto start - again its done so BMW can improve its MPG mandates - any gain is a good one, certainly when the 3 has to carry the line of bmws (x3,x5,x6 and m cars) Cafe results.

    To say the idea of turning a button off or on as a deal breaker is a joke, so many other dealbreakers somehow get overlooked - no Spare tire and run flats 2 that come to mind - inflated price another.

    When I bought my g - a coworker who had one told me to save the breaks I should shut down the stability control every time I get in- I have done so everyday I owned the car, no idea If this has helped the pads (I keep it on in rain). I also put a seat belt on every day- also not a deal breaker for me.
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,386
    edited August 2012
    I deliberately left the start/stop feature on during my 8 mile test loop in the new 335i and I could barely notice the start/stop.

    Frankly the price tag is a lot more of a deal-breaker for me( I buy my Bimmers well used to avoid the massive depreciation hit).
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