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Entry Level Luxury Performance Sedans

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Comments

  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 6,884
    tlong....great experience from that dealer. I've always said, whether it's the most basic Civic, or the most expensive TL, the dealer will either make or break the owner's opinion of that particular brand.

    Several years ago, my Mother had a Cadillac STS that was under warranty, and at the time, the selling dealer was really taking her for a "stooge". She got me involved and I started questioning everything they charged her for that was supposed to be warranty work. As I started to find more and more malfeasance with this particular dealer, I decided to file lemon law on behalf of my Mother. Long and short of it, after many fights (since the Caddy dealer tried to deny they charged for work that should have been taken care of under warranty), GM agreed to buy the car back.

    I swore I'd never buy a Cadillac for as long as I lived (and have stuck to that promise). Cadillac lost two customers (probably more given my negative word of mouth) over one dealership's service dept.
  • sweendogysweendogy Posts: 1,050
    I agree dealership experience is important - I like not having to go to the dealership at all-'or as few times as possible -
  • jg88jg88 Posts: 59
    My process is to only have the dealer do warranty work on a new car. The exception -- oil/fluid changes while under warranty. All wheel/tire work is done by a chain -- when I get a new car I buy a lifetime alignment package that will include free rotations. Every 5k, the car is aligned, tires rotated. I usually max out on tread life that way. I would never consider buying a tire from the dealer either -- there are too many companies who will beat their price all day long. Ford comes closest to offering reasonable tire prices from their dealers, the rest are 30+% higher, or more.

    I concur with the "dumb money" theories -- dealers will overcharge as much as they can. Once out of warranty, I go to independents who may specialize in certain types of cars as they are usually ex-dealer folks who go out on their own.
  • buyabuya Posts: 74
    Very smart. My advisor on whichever car it was said their dealership sends their cars out for things like alignments, and so I took mine to a garage chain and paid $99 for it. I'd only need 1 alignment on my cars if any at all, and if the lifetime alignment package is more than $99, it'd be too much. But the service pack is a smart thing for those who need alignment a lot.

    One time an advisor ignored the alignment request because he said my car didn't need it, and the shaft can only be aligned so many times. Didn't know how true that was.

    Tire rotation is a must and it should be front and back rotate on normal tires, but left and right switch for staggered. But go to the garage or gas station garage that has the right size and "star" tools for your car!
  • buyabuya Posts: 74
    Dealers charging for services they did not perform. Absolutely! Think my dad had been routinely charged for services that never made at the dealership where he purchased his car, so I took mine to that dealership for check up and lo-&-behold they said some parts needed to be replaced. I asked for the bad part held for my inspection and the advisor shown me a greasy part near the back door to their shop. That was the last time we bought a car from that dealership nearly - ahem - 20 years ago.

    My preference is to cultivate a relationship with my advisor and head tech at the dealership and not have to try a garage after warranty is over and redo the same service at the dealers.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    edited December 2012
    but left and right switch for staggered.

    Don't think that works for most cars. Virtually every vehicle I've owned or shopped that has staggered wheel sizes also has "unidirectional" tires with an inside and outside. Meaning that all four corners are unique and they cannot be rotated. If you try to put a left front on the right front you will either end up having the outside sidewall facing the inside or the tire will be rotating the opposite direction intended. Not sure what happens if you put a unidirectional tire on backwards (i.e. rolling in opposite direction intended) but don't think I want to find out on a new Porsche or BMW. If the tires are not unidirectional, no problem, but that's the exception based upon the cars I know that have staggered wheel sizes (i.e. usually higher performance models).
  • flightnurseflightnurse at 35K feetPosts: 1,522
    edited December 2012
    BTW, oil change for my BMW is about $10 more then the local indie shop charges, and the Indie shop wont give me a free loaner... I'll pay the extra $10 for a free car.
  • flightnurseflightnurse at 35K feetPosts: 1,522
    This is not a problem on cars that do not have staggered wheel sizes, like TL's or G's, BMW and or MB. My BMW 330 has staggered and "unidirectional" tires and really haven't had a need to "rotate" them..

    So hows the 911 or Cayman shopping? Was at the LA Auto show, very much liked what Porsche has done to the Cayman and Boxster, but have a hard time justifying the price for a new one. Currently I only drive my personal car roughly 5-6K/YR, can't get into paying $850/m lease on a new Boxster S.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I've put down a deposit to secure the #1 spot on a dealer list for the 2014 Cayman S. Earliest I would get the car would be late April, according to the latest release information. My "build your own" price on the Porsche website works out to an MSRP of $80k. We'll see; I can't place the order until Porsche gives the dealers the go ahead, which won't likely be until January. The only way I can do a purchase like this is to bite the bullet and pay cash. Do not want to be reminded of the frivolity of it all every month.

    On the tire thing, I think on 50/50 balanced RWD cars like the 330i, the tires naturally wear pretty evenly. It's on FWD cars with 60%+ of the weight on the fronts and the fronts doing both the steering and the driving that they wear considerably faster than the rears. Maybe my TL should have reverse staggering?
  • buyabuya Posts: 74
    edited December 2012
    Great point! I almost forgot the unidirectional thing! I had the staggered tires switched in a sedan type performance car and no one said anything to me. But that was back in younger days. The more recent sport car had one direction tires and the garage guy explained that to me too when he can't switch those tires. I thought it was just a Michelin thing. Less work, no complaints.

    It's all going to be history! Nice cars still appeal to me, but it's like vegans appreciating farm animals. I'm opting for a no fuss no muss use-and-toss car that is decent to drive and no batch concerns. Working on finding such wonder car at the moment.

    Good driving, good fun and good luck to all of you who desire or drive European cars or performance cars.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,091
    edited December 2012
    So I took my 2011 328xi in for service and was hoping to get an F30 328i or X3 with the 4cyl turbo as a loaner car. As luck would have it, the loaner I did get is a 2011 E90 335d. I've never driven a diesel before and I am impressed to say the least.

    You definitely hear the diesel clatter at idle and at low speeds, but the 335d doesn't stay at low speeds for very long. Passing power in this car at highway speeds is completely 100% effortless. The engine is smooth at high speeds and you'd be hard pressed to notice you are driving a diesel on the highway.

    Now the bad part. I attribute this to the tires that have almost 39,000 miles on them and are close to shot, the car's 425 lb ft of torque, and the rain slicked roads, but I saw the stability control light flicker a lot more than it does in my car. I really don't know if I can do without AWD here in Connecticut.

    The dealer I bought my car from and service it at (not the closest) is about 34 miles away from my house. On the 98% highway drive, I averaged over 35 mpg doing well over 70 most of the way.

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

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 13,559
    I love diesels, and had quite a bit of seat time in one while my son was in HS (which shocking to me was 4 years ago). Huge torque. Still pretty slow though. And MPG was nothing to write home about. Did have 4WD, though all 4 were on the same axle...

    I guess being a 26' Box Ryder Freightliner was a bit different than a 335d. Though I know the trunk on my was way bigger!

    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!)

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,091
    I know all about those. Our truck we have for deliveries is a 2006 Mitsubishi FUSO FE180 with a 4 cyl turbo diesel and 6 speed Automatic, & 14' box. Its not that fast and get crummy gas mileage:)

    Gonna give the 335d a workout on my way into work tomorrow AM:)

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

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 13,559
    I drove one of those cabover citivans a couple of times (turns out, the big boy was too big to get through the drop off at the airport). Nasty little beasts. Bouncy, rough, and quite unnerving just hanging out over the front axle. Just like an old VW bus, where your legs were the crumple zone.

    You should get a Sprinter. I had one of those once, and that baby drove nice.

    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!)

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,091
    A couple of my customers have Sprinters and they Love 'Em. They make fantastic plumbing trucks. Too small & narrow for what I need it for though:)

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

  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    edited December 2012
    Too bad BMW killed the 335d in 2011, and even worse, never offered a 535d here. I think that would have made a lot of sense.

    We get 30+ mpg on a highway cruise with our 5,300 lb X5d. Friend of mine made it back and forth from DC to Wilmington NC last summer in his 335d averaging 40+ mpg. According to him, the actual real world fuel economy of the 335d is considerably better than the new 328i (which his sister got, since the 335d isn't available). That coincides with our experience - in similar heavy city mix, our X5d gets 21 mpg and our 2005 MDX gets under 14 mpg. That's a real world 7+ mpg, 50%+ advantage, even though the EPA city ratings are only 2 mpg / 12% better (19 vs. 17).

    Now if I could only get my hands on one of these: M550d Sedan
  • sweendogysweendogy Posts: 1,050
    I'm amazed that a dealer would loan a diesel in the first place, never mind one with 39k miles and with bald tires no less - I don't think I've ever been in a rental car with more then 25k miles - and dealer loaners I've seen are usually under 10k.

    I also have never driven a d- and would like no one day - one with that power and heritage must be cool.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I'm amazed that a dealer would loan a diesel in the first place, never mind one with 39k miles and with bald tires no less

    Ha! You should have seen what I got a couple of years ago. Took my Acura in to my hometown Acura/Mercedes dealer for what was supposed to be an alignment and state inspection. Turned out that I had a couple of bent rims and the dealer needed to keep the car overnight. All regular loaners were out, so the owner gave me his 1980's vintage, pristinely restored 300SDL with about 200k miles on the odometer. Talk about a tank. It wasn't very quick, but it could have gone through a brick wall without slowing down.
  • flightnurseflightnurse at 35K feetPosts: 1,522
    Does Porsche have a European Delivery option? If so take it...
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,091
    Even just putting the gas mileage aside as an added bonus, the power that the 335d & your X5d produce is phenomenal.

    I would consider the cost differential as an engine upgrade. I don't think I could justify it for the fuel economy savings alone.

    I drove the car this AM to work and sat in some heavy traffic when I first got on I95, then on The Bruckner closer to my store, plus some crazy slow going on the local streets here in the Bronx. I've travelled a little over 65 miles so far & even with the traffic, my avg mpg is between 30 & 31. That is still a solid 10 mpg over what I average with the 328xi.

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

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