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Luxury Performance Sedans

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  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I'm lucky I was riding solo!
  • janssenjanssen Posts: 74
    Forgive me if you mentioned it and I've forgotten. What beemer do you have now? What options did you want/get?
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Very interesting stuff, thanks.

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Uh this is America the land of indebtedness - most folks have no problem whatsoever living in debt up to their eyebrows. Most folks are way over-extended in housing, plastic, cars, etc. All the more easier with leases - all folks have to do is make a monthly payment.

    Yeah I know. I refuse to do it that way, I'll wait until I can comfortably afford the luxury car of my choice.

    M
  • including the anti-lock brakes shuddering for ten seconds if I hit a bump while applying the brakes.

    My brakes do this too (02 530 sp). Did you get any resolution? I didn't realize that it constitutes a problem, although I wondered about it; the increased stopping distance is a definite concern.

    I know the brakes work properly because I didn't total my car the day I came around a curve at the bottom of a hill to find that the truck in front of me had come to a dead stop. In fact, I didn't hit him at all, although I really thought I was going to. Obviously, there was no uneven pavement on that stretch of road.

    ABTW, to comment on an earlier thread asking for the shemale point of view (I didn't read for two days and missed some 10 pages of postings!): I bought my car because it has a stick and I love the way it handles (also, I need the rear seat and trunk space). It doesn't look bad, either--although I never would have chosen silver if I were buying new--but I prefer the e46 for looks.
  • ckelly14ckelly14 Posts: 105
    Mark:

    As a current A4 1.8T owner, I feel your pain about Audi. I recently drove the A6, and I just can't understand how it's the lowest seller of the bunch. One thing I would comment on is accessibility. There are only 3 Audi dealerships in all of North Carolina, and the closest dealership to me in Cary, NC (near Raleigh) has a 2-3 week wait for service. There are 2 Mercedes dealerships, 2 BMW, 4 Cadillac, etc.. The second Lexus dealership in Durham is almost up and running.

    I almost moved closer to the coast near Savannah GA. Audi just opened a dealership in Charleston (about 70 miles away), but prior to that the closest was in Jacksonville (2 hours!). Savannah had it's own Lexus, BMW, Mercedes dealership. Could it be that Audi just is not interested in the NA market? Not that I'm complaining- I don't want a dime-a-dozen car! However, if someone from a town smaller than mine looks around and sees a few Cadillac dealerships, is he going to drive 2 hours to by an Audi? I doubt it!
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I got a 545i with comfort seats, folding rear seat and steptronic automatic transmission. My wife does not like the sport seats so I didn't get the sport package.

    I have it now for 2 1/2 days and have high parking lot anxiety. I'm sure some pharmaceutical company has a pill for this!
  • I don't exactly know if I am "pained" by Audi's apparent attitude. As I posted, earlier, they are currently riding high on their 12th successive year of growth.

    Just not here.

    Their go to market strategy, advertising, other marketing (including the lease deals), configurations and now an erosion of the Audi Advantage puzzle me.

    Of course, America is important to them -- "if you can make it here. . ." (and not just New York New York.) But perhaps we are more symbolic than we are of practical and financial merit. Audi does OK here -- but sales are down, while BMW and Mercedes (with recent quality problems that have by-passed Audi's reputation by some measure) with higher MSRP's (but often lower lease prices) outsell Audi by 300%. Yet in Germany, the people buy more Audis than Bimmers (at least this go round.) Audi and BMW trade off for being top selling in their segments.

    Lots of Mercedes taxicabs for certain -- but I am not counting them.

    So Audi does poorly with cars that I have had direct experience with -- and I know the cars are "equivalent." The A8L can go head to head to head with BMW and Mercedes, ditto the A6 and generally the A4 can at least be a rival for the 3 series.

    BMW may indeed be "better" in some or many ways -- but you would think that would be reflected all over the world. Apparently the distances as measured by sales are not that far apart (3 to 1 for the BMW) elsewhere.

    Pained? No, not really. Remember, I had put my money down on an M35X before Audi's hail Mary play to keep me an Audi owner. I had already started down the path of brand disenfranchisement (if that is a real word).

    I think the A6 is a fine car, it is much closer in all the things that make up the driving and owning experience to the BMW and Infiniti than its sales numbers suggest (here in the US.)

    Puzzled? Yes. And somewhat frustrated. I used to care a whole lot more than I do now. Audi and I had become emotionally separated and now we've agreed to try to work things out. We're still seeing our marriage shrink so to speak.

    I am very pleased with my car and my dealer. I do not regret anything thus far.

    The thing is, I used to be the kind of person who would buy a new Audi and immediately start wondering what the next Audi would be like -- actually looking forward to it and all.

    Now, I am looking at the broader LPS segment and seeing lots of good cars and wondering how they will attempt to keep and or win my business. The cars are very very similar -- Audi (in my estimation) used to be the clear leader, it was clearly differentiated from the other LPS segment players. It certainly is distinctive looking (but so are the BMW's and Cadillacs, etc.) -- but it is now one of a group of 6 or 7 or 8 very very similar cars (sorry to say this if you think your "fill in the blank" is really unique.)

    Audi's marketing seems hell-bent to kill the company in the US, while their product continues to improve. Beats me what they're thinking. :confuse:
  • I love that ... imagine forcing yourself to choose the Ultimate Driving Machine in a list created by people you don't know, limited to six vehicle so the host site can squeeze advertising links to each manufacturer at the top of a page.

    The folks at Porsche might want to chat with any other German car company and say, ummm.... "Ulitmate Driving Machine", er uh, "show me".

    So make sure when we make absolute statements here, we use the abbreviation:

    ITLA - in the list above.

    Works in lots of forums besides this one, come to think of it.
  • janssenjanssen Posts: 74
    2 1/2 days??!!! Wow-you are still in the state of euphoria! What is the speed limit there?

    As to pill, there are certainly some you could take, but you wouldn't be able to drive while taking them.....damn! I am slowly getting through this phase, but you are in the throes. Maybe they could make that clear bra thing for the whole car...

    I liked my tranny, and don't know how much they have improved the newer version. Although I felt like I was cheating a bit by not having a manual, I live in the city, and could not use it very often to justify the daily commute. Besides, resale value the way you chose it will be better. I know you are not thinking about that, though.

    Did your wife try to talk you down a level? You know, "why don't you get that engine with the better gas mileage?" What led you to pay the bonus and get the 8? Oh, and when does the break-in period end? How close are you?

    The great thing about that car is that you really don't have to wait for the break-in to be over, though. You can still find some curves and get instant satisfaction without going over 4K!
  • janssenjanssen Posts: 74
    Sorry to say I have no resolution. It is one of those intermittent problems, and the dealer says it is normal.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    If you really want ultimate, check out the latest Car and Driver. They have a high-end sports car comparo. I think the Porsche 911 was the lowest priced vehicle at around 140k and it came in at 4th place. The Lamborghini and the Maserati were battling it out for 1st place. So if you have an extra 200k...
    One can always dream!
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    I love that ... imagine forcing yourself to choose the Ultimate Driving Machine in a list created by people you don't know, limited to six vehicle so the host site can squeeze advertising links to each manufacturer at the top of a page.

    The folks at Porsche might want to chat with any other German car company and say, ummm.... "Ulitmate Driving Machine", er uh, "show me".


    If someone "forces" himself to make a buying decision based on this thread he has rocks in his head. I don't believe anyone does this. It's simply a point of reference.

    It's a foregone conclusion that "Ultimate Driving Machine" refers to cars of the four-seat variety. And it has been the truth about BMWs in the US for the past 30 years. Actually BMW didn't invent it. They hitchhiked onto what people were saying about the 2002 in the 70s.

    If you want to think so literally, anyone can be nailed on virtually anything.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    The euphoria usually ends with that first ding! A clear bra for the whole car is what I need right now.

    The posted speed limit down here is 70 on the interstate. But If you do 80 in the right lane, you will usually have a flat-bed trucker admiring your rear bumper.

    No. I don't care about the resale value. The residual is $34320. I will just move on up to whatever else is out there after test-driving the next wave of nice vehicles.(I start this process a year before the end of the lease. A lot of fun!)

    My wife knows nothing about cars. After having my 325i for over 2 years, she still couldn't pick it
    out of a parking lot! She knows that the sport seat was uncomfortable. She loves the new car with the comfort seats.

    You know you are in good shape when the owners manual indicates for the first 1200 miles, do not exceed a driving speed of 100 mph and an engine speed of 4500 rpm! Sounds like they copied this right out of the German manual. They say 300 miles for the brakes, 200 miles for the tires and of course, 1200 miles for the engine.

    With these cars, you can tell when the break-in period is over when you wake up one morning and all of a sudden the tires grip like you are riding on rails. Happened this way with both of my 325i's. Probably after 200-300 miles. I only have 140 miles(2 miles on delivery) driven with 19.7mpg.

    I got the 545i because BMW was running a "fire-sale" lease on it to make room for the new 550. My interest rate on this lease is only 2.4% I figure I am saving around $3000 off a typical BMW lease for this vehicle. Besides, it's a jungle out there on the interstate. All these huge SUV's and flat-bed truckers have plenty of horsepower. I gotta keep up!
  • janssenjanssen Posts: 74
    You spend a lot of time deciding. I don't think I could wait a year! How do you start? Reading the mags? Or do you just kind of wander into the dealerships as you pass by and see something new?

    My GF has learned a lot recently. She gets to drive my beemer until i sell it, and is she happy! So she BETTER learn! ;)

    I had really never heard this before, about a cars'suspension changing after the break-in. Why do you think that happens? Is this something the high-end manufacturers know about, and talk about?

    Good lease rate. Especially given the high BMW residual. People who don't understand leases may not understand how a car like a beemer can be pretty cheap on lease (comparatively, of course), since you only pay for depreciation and finance charges. Get a good finance rate like you did, and the car is pretty darned affordable, for its class.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I keep up with these boards and many of the other auto sites so I keep in touch with what's out there. Constantly reading online reviews of the professionals and consumers. MSN Autos and Yahoo Autos for example.

    About a year before lease-end, I subscribe to Road & Track and Car And Driver. Love their comparos.

    Around 8 months before, I have a list of 2-5 cars and begin test-driving them. I may drive a car 3-4 times over that 8 month period to help me decide. During this time I monitor leasing deals and prices paid, buying experiences on the Edmunds threads of the cars that I am interested in.

    It's not the suspension, but the tires. The tires can feel "slippery" at first but after 200-300 miles you can feel the improvement in grip.

    Like I said, BMW's are a great leasing car. But if I have a lot of headaches(my dealer is 40 miles away) due to poor quality control, I am not adverse to going with Lexus, Infiniti or Acura.
    2 1/2 days and no headaches. Cautiously optimistic!
  • Similar to Hpowders, I picked up an 05 545 on a fire sale. Was really excited to have some fun breaking it in this summer. Just a little over 2 months in, AC goes out (which means driving is unbearable here in SoCal). It takes me 3 wks to get a service appt, they promise 2 days turnaround and at this time, there is no ETA after 5 days. The funny thing is I call them for an update yesterday and I get a receptionist telling me "It's not ready, I don't know when it will be ready and your Client Advisor isn't here!" Yet they pressure you to give high marks on the survey! Funny :cry:

    Hope this isn't an indication of things to come. Its ironic, I picked up the e60 coming out of a trouble free 99' 540 because I was concerned about maintenance costs going forward. Maybe I should have stuck w/ the E39!
  • docnukemdocnukem Posts: 485
    Do you mean to say they eventually go away on their own? Thank heavens! I am so tired of walking that extra 1/2 mile from the parking lot. Happy to say, though, that I am dingless with 4.5 months of ownership.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    When was your 545i built?
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    What's really funny is I had to return my 325i last Monday. My car was "dingless" as I too practiced the park as far away as possible maneuver. The day before returning the vehicle I was parked closer to the supermarket than I normally would, and sure enough, someone put a ding on the rear passenger door. Luckily, it was less than 2 inches across and I didn't have to pay for its repair. Also, since I gave the car back the next day, I didn't have to keep looking at that spot torturing myself!
    I guess the letter with the perpetrator's phone # and apology must have blown away from my windshield wiper! :)
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