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Luxury Performance Sedans

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  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Hi - you did the right thing posting in the Q45 discussion. Another good resource is the Got a Quick, Technical Question? topic so I moved your post there. Check it out - I hope we can help.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Bring it on - we'd love to hear about it!
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,563
    "Absolutely, no argument there. I think People are going to be more focused that the 335 is now just a bit faster than competitors Lexus IS350 and the G35 298hp coupe, with 5.3 to 5.5 second zero to sixty sprints. They've brought performance up substantially on the 3 series, only a half second slower than M3's 4.8 zero to sixty mark. The low end torque makes the engine a very smooth accelerating car, with passing abilities much improved due to that increased torque."

    = = =

    The US Press Information also claims EPA MPG for the 335i Coupe with STEP ( the way I’d buy one ) will be: 20 / 29.

    - Ray
    Finding those numbers, combined with the performance, to be rather impressive . . .
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    This is the part of the article that I found most interesting:

    “BMW says that this engine makes 300 horsepower and 300 lb-ft of torque. We were so impressed with its power that we couldn’t help wonder if that was a conservative rating. Wasting no time, I swiped the keys and drove to a local dyno shop to find out.

    We used a DynoJet chassis dyno, which measures an engine’s power output at a vehicle’s rear wheels. Because of frictional driveline losses, this number is always lower--generally by fifteen to twenty percent--than the quoted power output from the manufacturer, which is measured at the engine itself.

    Here’s what we found:
    The non-turbocharged 330i, rated by BMW at 255 hp and 220 lb-ft of torque, puts about 200 hp and 180 lb-ft to the rear wheels. That’s roughly a twenty-percent loss. Since they have similar drivelines, you’d expect the 335i to put down 235 hp and 250 lb-ft.

    But it didn’t. It put down a whole lot more: 275 hp and 300 lb-ft. A few quick taps on our trusty calculator shows that this engine is likely putting out closer to 350 hp and 360 lb-ft of torque."


    BMW’s published specs are always conservative but this really seems like an anomaly. Hope it’s true. I don’t know though. I think it should have done better than 5.1 secs to 60 according to Automobile's dyno and calcs. In any event, I’ll take it.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,607
    hmmm... well, we'll see. But, yeah, it could be an anomaly on either the car's or dyno's end ... or it could even be a ringer to make a better first impression on the press.

    '13 Stang GT; '15 Fit; '98 Volvo S70; '14 Town&Country

  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    But it didn’t. It put down a whole lot more: 275 hp and 300 lb-ft. A few quick taps on our trusty calculator shows that this engine is likely putting out closer to 350 hp and 360 lb-ft of torque."

    BMW’s published specs are always conservative but this really seems like an anomaly.


    That difference is strikingly large, and let's hope it works in BMW's favor. Regardless, the engine sounds sensational, and is a genuine treat for Bimmer enthusiasts, IMO.

    TagMan
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    A casting director seeks drivers who think of their cars as extensions of their personalities and are able to participate in a rally from Vancouver to LA for two weeks in October. Please visit http://www.carspace.com/bullrun for more information.
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,563
    I am a bit surprised to see a test of a 2006 at this time in the year, but:

    http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Drives/Followup/articleId=116521
  • The good news this week, is speculation that at least for a while, gas prices may "plummet" -- with a drop in the price of oil per bbl of $15 to $20. Don't hold your breath, but there are some folks that think a $.50 to $1.00 drop per gallon is possible.

    Now, we all know this, even if it comes true, will be temporary. $4.00+ gas is a foregone conclusion -- it is just a matter of time.

    Once again, Audi has, what I think is a fine response -- even if this was NOT exactly intended as an economy response:

    "The little engine that could," used to be the 1.8T as it was in the Euro only S3 and the American and Euro TT 225. That engine, loved by many was replaced with an engine that has already proven to have almost unbelievable potential. We welcomed the 2.0T FSI with open arms. The thing loafs along and produces 200HP all the while sipping gas. A new engine map here, a slightly bigger turbo there and a new exhaust system has cranked the thing to 350HP while retaining almost zero turbo lag and daily driver friendliness.

    Don't try this at home -- Audi frowns on making this little dude output 350 hp and weapons grade torque.

    But, Audi itself has blinked and now has shown us what a tiny tiny tweak to this engine can produce: 220HP and it doesn't even sweat.

    Audi is extending the A4 model line by launching an additional version of the four-cylinder 2.0 TFSI model which generates 220 bhp. This Audi A4 2.0 TFSI, which can also be ordered in Avant version, is available either with quattro permanent four-wheel drive or front-wheel drive, both of which come in combination with a 6-speed manual gearbox.

    This engine was previously available exclusively in conjunction with the “DTM Edition” (saloon) or with S line plus (Avant) special models. The new variant now offers the option of combining this extremely powerful engine with refined looks. The new variants of the A4 and A4 Avant are only recognizable to those in the know by their perforated front brake discs and matt black tailpipes.

    This variant of the Audi A4 is powered by what is currently the most powerful version of the 2.0 TFSI in the model line. The output of this direct-injection petrol engine with turbocharger has been boosted from 200 to 220 bhp, and torque increased from 280 to 300 Nm. The performance figures of the A4 saloon (with front-wheel drive) are correspondingly impressive: it accelerates from a standstill to 100 km/h in 7.1 seconds and achieves a top speed of 247 km/h. Overall fuel consumption amounts to 8.0 litres per 100 kilometers
    .

    Now, in the world of "unintended consequences" this engine with a slight change in engine mapping, not even a new turbo and simply a cat back exhaust replacement is quite happy to produce 250HP and even more torque. Yawn, even then this engine is frugal with your gas money.

    Audi surely didn't intend to make the 2.0T FSI the power, performance and economy leader -- did it?

    If you want an argument [against] "the internal combustion engine is a dinosaur" (no pun intended with its use of fossil fuels) you only have to look as far as the 2.0T FSI. This engine, when it has added to it ONE little enhancement, gets even better. That little enhancement is a motor than spins the turbo impeller at a certain number of RPM's when the driver is simply putt-putting around -- the result, 100% of the [quite substantial] torque is available AT ANY ENGINE RPM!

    With cleaner fuels, Audi has even another possible trick up its sleeve: the compression ratio of the engine can be raised OR the car can be made to perform on regular gasoline. In the first case, the power and efficiency rise yet again, in the second case the annual cost for fuel drops about $.20 per gallon without engine damage.

    GM and Ford, to name two, seem to struggle to produce engines with "adequate" power and acceptable gas mileage -- they use Multi Displacement Technology in an attempt to improve economy, all the while making the engine 3, 4 or more liters in size. Its no wonder they can't get their CAFE numbers up, they keep making bigger engines not more effective and efficient engines.

    Audi, and others (BMW, too, for instance) are really coming on strong as engine companies. GM and others could wisely spend some money and buy up a few dozen A4 2.0T's and disassemble the engines and then shamelessly imitate them!

    It would be good for fuel economy, it would be good for getting us off Persian Gulf oil and it would be a blast to drive cars so equipped.

    Now, if the Audi Engineers would just stop frowning on a 350HP 2.0T FSI -- it boggles the mind. A car, so equipped, would be darn near an S4, but the thing would, relatively speaking, sip gas.

    LPS cars with 350HP 4 cylinder engines (when gas is $4/gallon)? I would certainly consider one.

    Dream a little dream with me.

    Drive it like you live. :shades:
  • sfcharliesfcharlie Posts: 402
    "I am a bit surprised to see a test of a 2006 at this time in the year"

    ...and, IMHO, not all that interesting/timely since the much-improved (in terms of HP, torque range, and gas mileage) 4.2 FSI engine is now showing up on dealer-lots in the 2007 A6 line.

    I have also read a couple of posts on other forums where someone driving the A6 with air adative suspension in "sport/dynamic" mode seems to feel they got the best of both worlds, in terms of cushy/sporty. But I only drove that once in a rented Allroad, where I did enjoy it.
  • sfcharliesfcharlie Posts: 402
    Mark ... I drove a 2007 A4 2.0T FSI Quattro last weekend. A British car-critic (Andy Enright, Yahoo-UK) wrote it up as the best car in the Audi line. Whether that's true of any car in any brand-line (given all the variables that go into the making one of us love a car), I did like it better than the A4 with the 3.2 V6 and the Audi Brand Specialist salesman, over here for a couple of years from Germany, was quite enthusiastic about selling me that lower priced model rather than the V6 we test drove. The back seat and width might create a mild claustrophobia over time, but perhaps not if I thought of it as a sports car with a useable back seat...Charlie
  • I'd like to try the DRC version, especially if they have the bugs worked out of it.

    The new RS4 has it, and frankly, it seems like it ought to be less expensive than the air version which isn't REAL TIME from what I gather. DRC is, however.

    The RS6 version was great and was greatly criticized not for its functionality, but for its frequency of repair.

    Perhaps Yamaha (I think that is the source) has figured out how to make it less likely to go bump.
  • marleybarrmarleybarr Posts: 334
    Drove the Acura RDX the other night and was enthusisatic about the vehicle. Didn't like the no-budge MSRP of $33,600 plus fees. How would you compare the BMW x-3 to the Acura?

    I just had the turbos replaced on my 2000 A6 w/95,000 last week and now the "check engine" light is on again, fairly sure it is a mass air sensor or some similar part.Once this is repaired, going to try to move this car down the road towards either the x-3 or RDX.
  • There's a discussion forum specifically for this topic.

    X3 vs RDX -- just go to BMW, X3 and klik klik there it is.

    The RDX with all options will come in $10,000 less than a comparably equipped X3.

    It merits some attention for that fact alone.

    Of course if it drives and rides like it costs $10,000 less, well then it isn't much competition for the X3.

    Here in LPS land, if you could find a car that appeared "damn close" to a BMW 5 or Infiniti M or Audi A6 or whatever your favorite flavor was and it was a 5 figure to the left of the decimal point less MSRP, wouldn't you at least mull it over.

    I'd like to see a full on test of a maxed out Chrysler 300C vs a Cadillac STS.

    I don't know if that is some kind of flawed reasoning, but it seems similar to the situation between the X3 and the RDX, yes/no/maybe?

    I was, long ago, looking at an Audi 4000S vs the then VW product called a Quantum. I did, at that time, go ahead and buy the 4000S, several years later, though, the Quantum came out with full leather the EXACT same 5 cylinder engine as was in the Audi, the 5 speed stick a nice stereo and on and on and on -- THAT time, I bought the Quantum. Traded it a year later for an Audi 80 quattro sport.

    The point is, using the LPS cars as a starting point, there are more and more near-LPS cars that seem like they "might" get our attention due in large part to their near-LPS content and way below LPS price.

    Well, that was the idea behind the Phaeton, too, wasn't it.

    Hmm -- never mind. :confuse:
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Of course if it drives and rides like it costs $10,000 less, well then it isn't much competition for the X3.

    Most of the reviews I've seen seem to think that it does. The underlying theme seems to be, "why does this cost so much" when compared to a Mazda CX-7 or Rav4, rather than "why does this cost so little" when compared to the X3. I think Acura missed the mark. (Again)
  • dhamiltondhamilton Posts: 873
    don't think the Toyota, or the Mazda is in the Acura's league. I really think the RDX is a great alternative to the X3. Keep in mind that I don't get people's aversion to the RL. :sick:

    I test drove the RDX and my comments are on the appropriate thread. FWIW, I don't think the Acura's driving dynamics can match the bimmers, but I don't think BMW can match the Acura in dollar value, gadgets, [nav, stereo are in a different league] or long term cost to own.
    My two cents, worth about a cent.

    PS I hate Toyotas. I'll admit it. They don't drive for crap, and are uncomfortable for me. They are too much like a blender. [see above comment about dollar value/my opinion]
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 2,702
    "Keep in mind that I don't get people's aversion to the RL.
    "

    I think the "aversion" can be spelled with two letters: TL. For significantly less $$$, the TL offers better performance, more room and superior styling. Had the RL come out of the gate priced in the low $40s, it might have fared better.

    The car itself is a fine piece of work from what I've seen/read. But, the wrong car at the wrong price will not sell as the mfg. hopes, imho. (See: VW Phaeton or MB R Class...)

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

  • dhamiltondhamilton Posts: 873
    able to negotiate my brother-in-laws RL for 41k even before taxes. That's about 7 grand more than the best deals on TL's at the time. That 7 grand got, all wheel drive, better handling. [When you say better performance you must mean a slight edge in acceleration. That's it.] Better nav, better stereo, more commands in voice recognition. Steering wheel paddle shifters,GPS actuated sun shade. I think the rear seat room is inconsequential. I have ridden in the back of both extensively, they are both very comfortable, but the RL is far more luxurious.
    The RL could be had at 41 very soon after the gate, and still can be pretty close to that.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    better handling. [When you say better performance you must mean a slight edge in acceleration. That's it.

    Not true. The TL is 1 second faster to 60 than the RL (more with the 6MT). In Edmunds slalom tests, the TL was 5mph faster, despite not having "Super-Handling" AWD. Most of the effort of the AWD system is used to keep the RL from understeering off of the road, thanks to worst in class weight distribution. A 4,000lb luxury car is not going to out handle a performance sedan that weighs 500lbs less. The TL TypeS will only make the performance gap that much wider.

    If you ask me, $7K is an awful lot of money for AWD, a questionably better stereo (The TL's is one of the best in class) some Nav upgrades and a sunshade. Even BMW would give you more than that for $7K.
  • If you ask me, $7K is an awful lot of money for AWD, a questionably better stereo (The TL's is one of the best in class) some Nav upgrades and a sunshade. Even BMW would give you more than that for $7K.

    I'm not really a proponent of either the RL or TL, but I have driven both. The TL is a feisty car, but with front wheel drive (much the same as the maxima) torque steer is much more evident than in the AWD RL. That can be a real let down (buzz kill) when trying to drive aggresive in either straight line acceleration or in handling moves. Acura is still not competing with the handling cars of this class, but is more than enough for those that don't care to or have occasion to push. In my neck of the woods, TL's are the new A
    ccords, the are everywhere.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I'm not really a proponent of either the RL or TL, but I have driven both. The TL is a feisty car, but with front wheel drive (much the same as the maxima) torque steer is much more evident than in the AWD RL. That can be a real let down (buzz kill) when trying to drive aggresive in either straight line acceleration or in handling moves.

    I agree that the TL definitely is not the perfect car. The problem with the RL is that a TL with AWD would render it pointless. This is not an issue with the 330xi\530xi, A4\A6 etc. The RL just doesn't bring enough to the table, and people literally aren't buying it.
  • sfcharliesfcharlie Posts: 402
    "The RL just doesn't bring enough to the table, and people literally aren't buying it."

    2001: For Acura, TL was up, selling 69,484 units. RL was down almost 28% from 2000.

    2002: TL was down 12% from 2001,but is Acura's best-selling vehicle (60,764 sold). RL goes down another 12+% to 9,392.

    2003: Acura finished 2003 with record December sales of 15,537 cars and light trucks, up 21 percent over last year on the strength of MDX, TSX and the all-new TL. Record Acura sales of 170,918 for the full calendar year topped the previous best of 170,469 set in 2001. BUT, the TL and and RL were both down. The TL sold 56,770 (-6.6% from 2002), while the RL sunk to 6,829 sold (-27% from 2002).

    2004: Acura Division sales in 2004 rose 16.0 percent over last year's record to 198,919 cars and SUVs. Record December sales of TSX, TL, MDX and the all-new RL pushed Acura to new December record of 20,146 vehicles, up 24.9 percent over the previous December, making it the best month Acura's 14-year history. Acura TL sales were up 36.8 percent to 77,895 and RL sales were up too: the old RL had sold only 414 units in December of 2003. The new RL was up 357% for December 2004, selling 1,967 units. That raised the RL sales for the year to 8,753 (up 28% from 2003).

    2005: With record sales of the RL, TL and TSX sedans, the Acura Division posted a new all-time record result for the full calendar year. Acura sales in 2005 rose 5.7 percent over last year's record to 209,610 cars and SUVs, breaking the 200,000-unit mark for the first time. Acura posted record December sales for TSX and TL. The year's percentage increase over 2004 for the TL, however was under 1% (78,218), while the new RL, in its first full year on the market, was up 101% (17,572).

    2006: This year, however, the RL is down 31.5% (versus the first 7 months of last year) having sold only 6,932 units so far. The TL is down too, but only -5.4% compared to last year.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    2006: This year, however, the RL is down 31.5% (versus the first 7 months of last year) having sold only 6,932 units so far. The TL is down too, but only -5.4% compared to last year.

    The RL's initial strength came from the fact that it beat the GS and M to market by almost a year. I think if the RL was released for '06 rather than '05, it would've been a dud pretty much immediately. In any case, it doesn't really matter, as it is still the second worst car in the class (better than only the S-type), and it will never sell 1,967 again.

    The TL isn't going to fare much better in the next few years. They've already gone past the Accord architecture's reasonable limit for FWD power, and yet now they want to throw in 30 or so more horses in an effort to try and compete with the G35, IS350, and 335i. Not good.
  • sfcharliesfcharlie Posts: 402
    2000: 39,703

    2001: 40,005

    2002: 40,842

    2003: 46,964 [The BMW Group (BMW and MINI brands combined) ended its best year ever with robust twelve-month sales gain of 8 percent, reporting 276,869 vehicles over the 256,622 reported in 2002. It was the twelfth straight year that BMW posted sales increases. Sales for December were off 5 percent, at 24,915 vehicles compared to sales of 26,252 in December 2002.]

    2004: 45,584

    2005: 52,722 [The BMW Group in the U.S. (BMW and MINI brands combined) reported record sales for 2005, with an increase of 4 percent, to push the total over the 300,000 threshold for the first time.]

    2006: Year-to-Date Sales of BMW Group Up 5.3 Percent; July sales off 12 Percent ... BUT 5-series sales are 31,309 so far this year, up 12.8% from 27,765 for the first seven months of last year ... down, however, for July, along with the rest of the BMW lineup (4,381 sold last July and only 3,474 in July 2006).
  • mbbrooksmbbrooks Posts: 16
    I decided to try to take advantage of August deals and went about looking for a new car to replace my 2003 Honda Accord V-6.

    I was attracted initially to the BMW 5 series in the form of a 530i. The car looks good, gets out of its own way, rides well in the standard version, and you can get most of the bells and whistles. The problems were (1) that I'd have to order a car to get what I wanted (nav: with the iDrive you have to have the voice commands, sport package: love those seats - foldown rear seat, rear side airbags: why these are not standard I don't know, upgraded stereo: but no CD changer which takes up most of the glove box) (2) there are many 5's around here with the 525 being prevalent, and (3) a new 5 will be out in a year or so.
    The dealer only had one car with Nav and it had nothing else but I was in love and would have leased it on the spot if they had given me what the website showed as the lease payment. They didn't get close and I was out of there.

    I then spent two weeks looking around at other cars - I figured it could be a lot of fun and it was.

    I first went to Accura since I loved my two Hondas. The TL is a nice car but it was too much like my Accord. The RL was very nice. It has a great voice command system and nav system. But the handling, acceleration, and mileage were real let downs.

    I have no interest in Infiniti's for reasons that are not pertinent here so I did not look at them.

    I looked at the new GS and IS Lexus. I liked them both but somehow they didn't reach out to me. There was a 530i parked outside the showroom and it seemed like a sign.

    I went to look at Audis. I have a garage queen Porsche 993 and knew the dealership pretty well and liked them. While there were things I liked about the A6 there were things I did not like such as overall finish and materials and acceleration. I really did not feel that it was worth the money and the BMW 5 was still calling my name. While I was there I looked at Jags but was totally uninspired.

    I was fortunate to have a friend who knew the sales manager of another BMW shop and he gave me a great quote. Armed with that quote, it was back up to the other BMW dealer to order the car. I knew what I wanted now more than ever.

    On the way I thought I'd stop by the Mercedes-Benz dealer just to be able to say I saw everything. I have never seen myself as a MB kind of guy so I thought this would be a quick stop. Sure the cars looked and felt nice but a Benz? Pleeease. After some prompting the sales guy got me in a E350 to test drive it. It would be easier, and quicker just to be done with it and I knew that now my research would be truly complete.

    The car I drove was a 2007 E350 with the Sport Package. It was one of the saleguy's car so I didn't hammer it too hard but I the handling was great as was the acceleration. The finish and materials were as good as I'd seen. While I have always disliked lots of buttons and dials on the dash, after 3 test drives in the BMW I was still being frustrated by the iDrive. The overall package overwhelmed the 530.

    When they showed me a 2007 - MB has redone the front end and rear ends to some degree - E350 in Flint Grey with the Sport Package and Premium 1 and 2 packages - I was sold on the spot. Not that I admitted it of course and I negotiated hard on the deal and came out okay. The dealership has bent over backwards to make everything as pleasant as possible.

    I have had the car for two weeks now and could not be more pleased. I really wonder why I didn't do this years ago.

    Like I said, just my thoughts.
  • dhamiltondhamilton Posts: 873
    Edmunds the RL was the fastest through the slalom when compared to the other cars in the class. Bimmer 5 series, Audi, and some others [can't remember. My point is, no one compares the G to the M? I don't quite get the point of the TL RL comparison. Because the TL has more rear seat leg room? The G handles better than the M. So what's the point
    I need to dig up some handling numbers for both.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Edmunds the RL was the fastest through the slalom when compared to the other cars in the class.

    Again, untrue. You really need to some more research. Edmunds recorded two slalom tests for the RL, 60, and 63mph. The 5 and A6 have beaten those numbers by large margins.

    My point is, no one compares the G to the M? I don't quite get the point of the TL RL comparison. Because the TL has more rear seat leg room? The G handles better than the M. So what's the point

    The M is a genuinely larger car, with features you can't get on the G, a V8 for one. The point of the RL TL comparison was you claiming that the RL handles better. The other point is that unlike the M, and every other car in the class, the RL offers nothing over the TL other than AWD and a few minor tech tricks.

    The A4 3.2 and A6 3.2, 330xi and 530xi, IS and GS AWD, G35x and M35x can all co-exist because the midsize cars actually offer something other than a different body style. If Acura made an AWD TL, RL sales would drop to zero.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    And there it is, well put. For all the time I spend on cars it never really occured to be that the RL was even remotely based on the Accord platform. :confuse:

    M
  • I often mistake the RL for an Accord, until I get within a certain range or perspective.

    I always assumed the RL started life out in some respects as an Accord.

    Takes all kinds. :surprise:
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