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Luxury Performance Sedans

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  • james27james27 Posts: 433
    I left my M with a stereo installer who put in a bunch of Dynamat...it is a much nicer ride on the long interstate runs, yet you still hear the engine when you push it. I can hear the stereo better, and the voice recognition at speed is more reliable, too.
  • BMW system seems to be different as it is not changing torque required to turn the wheel and rather changes ratio.

    BMW Active Steering

    Don't confuse this with common variable-assist power steering, which merely makes the wheel feel lighter at slow speeds and firmer when going fast. The technology also links up with an electronic stability-control system for further advantage: If the car senses it's about to skid, an electric motor can automatically apply a subtle countersteer to stabilize the car.

    That's the difference: steering wheel still has meaty feeling, you just need to rotate it less. In A6 feel of the steering get lighter and ligher the slower you go. Sounds like standard variable assist to me.
  • You are correcto-mundo! The A6 has Servotronic, the slower you go the greater the boost. Servotronic II by ZF apparently (since I have not driven a car with this) changes both the force required based on road speed and the reaction to steering wheel motions (also releated to road speed.)

    Audi, BMW, Cadillac, LandRover, Volvo all use Servotronic, some applications (in some models) use Servotronic II.

    I think I would like Servotronic II, but several car magazines and our BMW salesrep seem to say it is an acquired taste. Some of the magazines have even called Active Steering maddening.

    Since it, at this point, isn't free, I would suggest to anyone that they first test cars with and without it. It is, apparently, more and more likely that Servotronic (one) is making its way into more and more models from many manufacturers. I would suspect if ActiveSteering or whatever ZF calls their version when it is marketed to a willing buyer catches on, we'll see ever lighter steering feel and very little steering wheel input needed (at slow speeds) to cause a large turn in.

    I do feel the road -- in this technology (Servotronic I) -- unlike the GM and Chryco products I grew up with in the 60's which had super boosted steering that felt like I wasn't turning a darn thing and any road feel was probably my imagination.

    I will keep digging, but "if" Servotronic II is the underlying technology for Active Steering, it certainly appears that it varies both the torque and the ratio based on road speed. Cadillac literature actually uses the Roman Numeral II after the word Servotronic to describe, essentially, what is Active Steering.

    One of the road tests of a BMW using this technology claimed ActiveSteering added "numbness" or subtracted road feel. Perhaps that is what you are commenting on?

    Going from a 2003 Audi to a 2005 Servotronic equipped BMW X3 then to another Servotronic equipped Audi, I enjoyed what I would characterize as "increased and improved responsiveness." Servotronic II seems (on paper) like it might be the best of all worlds -- unfortunately, at this time, the 530xi and the 3 series x's cannot be had with ActiveSteering, but the X3 can be had with Servotronic I and the X5 with ActiveSteering (with the sport package option.)

    :confuse:

    Audi, on the other hand, will offer sport suspension (and remember with a 530xi you cannot get a sport suspension, but you can get a sport package that changes the seats and wheels) and Servotronic on their AWD cars (DOH!)

    A 535xi with a sport suspension ought to be a fantastic car, perhaps an even better choice with THAT engine than the current V8's BMW offers.

    After having driven the 335i, I am a believer in the new turbos from BMW -- and I would, I suspect, want one with Servotronic I or Active Steering if such would be offered.
  • If the Audi lease came down $200 per month I would seriously consider it but I doubt if it will. My salesman retired last month and i wanted to order a fully equipped '07 A6 3.2. from him before he left. he knew I had a problem with the increased cost and was considering M35 so he worked at $600 over invoice which translated to $797/month. All leases are 36 months. I was paying $568 for my '03. I think I can get the M35X for mid 600's and GS350AWD for high 600's. The reports on the M's nav system and back up camera are very positive. I'm not sure how the sound systems compare. If the Audi had kept the twin turbo at 300HP I would have paid the increase. I love the acceleration of the GS350 but don't know if I can live with the steering and small trunk. Need to make a decision soon!!!!!!!!!! :confuse:
  • "If the Audi lease came down $200 per month I would seriously consider it"

    What acounts for the extra $150/month on the Audi over the M35? Interest rate (money factor) or sales price, or both?
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    One of the road tests of a BMW using this technology claimed ActiveSteering added "numbness" or subtracted road feel. Perhaps that is what you are commenting on?

    C&D absolutely hated it in their 645i test. They called it "the ultimate driving simulation".
  • Yeah, I hear you, but wanna bet something like this will make its way across many of the LPS car in the near future?
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Yeah, I hear you, but wanna bet something like this will make its way across many of the LPS car in the near future?

    Oh I'm sure it will. Now that they pretty much all have electric steering, the "next big thing" seems to be variable ratio. That is except for Infiniti, who seem to be more interested in steering with the rear wheels. Nissan has been playing around with that for a very long time.
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,530
    "A 535xi with a sport suspension ought to be a fantastic car, perhaps an even better choice with THAT engine than the current V8's BMW offers" - markcincinnati

    BMW's press kit ( yesterday ) confirms the 535i & 535xi.
    The "Updated Styling" ( in the few pictures I have seen ) does not make the 5 any more arttractive to MY eyes, but YMMV.
    - Ray
    Looking forward to test driving the RWD version . . .
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    You know, this whole breathed on I6 engine thing has got me to wondering. Would it be possible to transplant one of the new mills from the 335i/535i into a late E39 5-Series? Geez, what I wouldn't give to have my old 2002 530i with that mill stuffed under the hood. ;-)

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Wouldn't just adding some turbos or a supercharger be a lot easier? Its not as if the 335 engine is anything more than the 3.0L with turbos on it. It seems a little silly to transplant an entire engine for just that. Since overall displacement is the same though, I don't see how the 335 engine could have any trouble fitting in the space large enough for the 540i and M5.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Trust me, it's WAY more complicated than a simple blower installation. Consider the following points:

    1) The engine in the 2002 E39 was the previous style (and in fact many years old in its life cycle) aluminum block with the cast iron sleeves. Decent for its purpose, but hardly as robust as the new aluminum core/magnesium shell composite block that debuted with the introduction of the E90.
    2) Factory built turbocharged engines are typically reinforced (over that of the normally aspirated siblings) with the following goodies:
    - 2a) Higher strength crank, rods and pistons
    - 2b) Rod based oil squirters to cool the piston domes
    - 2c) Considerably greater cooling capabilities such as:
    - - 2cA) Larger radiator and the necessary plumbing
    - - 2cB) Additional and/or larger oil coolers and the necessary plumbing
    - - 2cC) Large size intercooler(s) and the necessary plumbing
    - - 2cD) Extra coolant plumbing to the bearings on the turbine houseing to keep them cool, especially at shutdown
    - 2d) Significant software remapping
    - 2e) Revised/more robust valve train
    - 2f) Higher flow intake and exhaust manifolds (2 in the case of the 335i)

    Did BMW do all of the above to the 335i engine? Probably. Would I trust the (bored out to within an inch of its life) 3.0 liter mill from an E39 to withstand the rigors of a 300 (320-340 by all accounts) HP turbocharging application? Not a chance. While the old 3.0 liter mill was certainly a good and robust engine for its intended output, there is only one word to describe what would happen to that engine when an intake charge 150% of design spec was fed into it. KABOOM! ;-)

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • Ray,

    After reading your post, I went to the BMW USA web site under Future Vehicles and read the overview and press release on the new 5 series.

    Does the press kit you mentioned have any additional information than the web site?

    In the overview, when describing the 550i sport package, they say " ... new 19” double spoke alloy wheels (non run-flat) ... " Does anyone know if this implies that versions other than the 550i SP will have RFTs?

    Thanks
    Bruce
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,530
    "Does the press kit you mentioned have any additional information than the web site? "

    So far, I have only seen a batch of additional photographs - that I do not yet see on the web site.
    - Ray
    Semi-happy with my run-flats....
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    An engine doesn't have to be made out of exotic metals to handle some serious boost. Take the Toyota 2JZ-GTE for example. Its an iron block, aluminum head SOHC straight six that dates back to the early '90s. Hardly state of the art. Normally aspirated it made 225hp. With twin turbos, it could do 500hp without serious modification. I know the S2000's engine can do well over 300hp with just 2.2L, and Honda did not design it with forced induction in mind.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    "An engine doesn't have to be made out of exotic metals to handle some serious boost."

    Agreed, however, the old BMW engine was more than a little long in the tooth. Comparing an iron block Toyota mill or or the very high revving S2000 is rather apples to oranges. I've never torn one of the old 3.0 liter BMW engines down so I cannot speak from first hand knowledge, however, as I understand it, its been bored out to the point where keeping three hundred plus HP contained would be more than a little hard on head gaskets and such.

    Regardless, even if I was playing with one of the new mills I still wouldn't breath on it without a serious internal rework, including a lower mechanical compression ratio. Long story short, the only real way I'd ever attempt this would be to find a totalled 335i with the drive train still intact. Realistic? Probably not. :-(

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • I want 535d xi
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    A 6-Speed 535d SP (sans "x") sounds great to me too, especially given that I'm driving nearly 100 miles per day. That said, given the 300 (plus) hp on tap from the twin turbo gasser, oooh, I'd have a difficult time passing that one up. ;-)

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,141
    I read that the 535i will be here in March!

    MODERATOR
    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • The Audi was app.$7200 more similarly equipped. Audi had a lower MF. Infiniti had a slightly higher residual.

    GUESS WHAT!!!!!!!
    Audi is now offering a $2500 owner loyalty on A6's until 3/5/07.
    36/12 50% res. .00027 MF. Added in Audi maintenance for $550 which raises res.1% to 51%. Added 18" wheels and ordered a blk/blk. May miss the acceleration of the M but there is someting about the "planted" secure feeling of the Quattro Audi that I wanted. With the wheels($900) paying $app.$%5 month less than before.
    I'm excited!!!!!!
    J
  • ocimocim Posts: 45
    I can see why some would prefer the G's interior styling over the M's. I think it is a little more sporty. However, from the quality and texture of the materials, the G isn't even close to the M.
  • Hi, Told my dealer about the lease terms you mentioned. They said they do not know anything about an owner loyalty program for the A6. Do you have a link or source? They also told me MF was .00042. They must be looking to close the deal because last Monday the MF was quoted at .0014. However, while MF is down they say residual is 49%, down for 50%. (A6 3.2Q 36mo/12k) I don't think I believe that. Tough keeping up with these guys.
  • Interesting post, LexusG. I also own an older A6 (3.0, 2002), and just returned from testing the new one. Did not like it much. I felt that the new A6 was too noisy, and provided less visibility than my older Audi. I still loved the interior and technology in the Audi, but did not enjoy actually driving it as much as driving the old one. Unlike many people here, I like a quiet and soft ride. Not too interested at "feeling the road". I just tested the Lexus ES 350 and enjoyed it. Feels like lots of car for the money. Following other discussions here, I would want to try the Infinity and see how that feels.
  • Late April/early May my dealership says. They are taking orders, but they don't have pricing yet.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Unlike many people here, I like a quiet and soft ride. Not too interested at "feeling the road". I just tested the Lexus ES 350 and enjoyed it. Feels like lots of car for the money.

    In terms of creamy isolation from the outside world, the ES does it better than any other car under $65K. If by Infiniti you mean the G or M, I wouldn't bother. They are about as far on the other end of the spectrum as you can get from the ES; raw, mean sports sedans. My suggestions for other cars to consider would be the GS350 AWD, and Volvo S80 3.2. The Toyota Avalon also has most of what the above cars have, for a lot less money. The Passat is also worth trying.
  • WOW.

    I had the following (not a complete list):

    1995 S6
    1997 A8
    1999 A6 2.8
    2000 A6 4.2 comfort
    2001 A6 4.2 sport
    2003 allroad 2.7T
    2005 A6 3.2 with 18" wheels and 245 x 40 x 18" tires

    At the same time, my wife had multiple A4's, three TT's and one BMW X3 3.0.

    The A6 is the quietest of the bunch (including the A8), it also is both more compliant and able to corner better than the 2001 sport version of my A6, which I assumed is due to the its greater, by far, chassis stiffness.

    I tested, thoroughly, the Infiniti M35X and the Cadillac STS and have rented, repeatedly, competing lux and/or sport lux cars from Europe and the US. I rented, too, a Lexus and participated in a test with Car and Driver that included the new Lexus cars.

    Lexus cars are the most quiet. Audis and Cadillacs are second and the Infiniti is third. The BMW's I have tested and or have in my garage at this moment are hardly loud, but they are the loudest of the bunch -- due perhaps to the choice of tires they come with.

    Perhaps you drove a new C6 Audi with 19" wheels and tires and the S-Line package. This version can be noisier and I assume it is entirely a function of the wheels and ultra low profile tires (with extra stiff sidewalls.)

    The ride of the Audi IS firm, but it is also shudder free and able to telegraph the road to the driver.

    The Lexus seems to me to be as comfortable and quiet as the Cadillac DTS, and able to handle better -- but the Cadillac on a smooth road at 80MPH remains like riding on your living room Barcolounger -- and even the Lexus doesn't do that.

    Thank god.

    I urge you to test Audi A6 again -- unless for other reasons you have totally ruled it out -- and other than this suggestion: ask them to make sure the tires are properly inflated -- well, it should be quite smooth,compliant and quiet. Moreover, it should handle very well, certainly better than the Lexus and Cadillac models it competes with.

    Wow. :surprise:
  • > I urge you to test Audi A6 again -- unless for other reasons you have totally ruled it out -- and other than this suggestion: ask them to make sure the tires are properly inflated -- well, it should be quite smooth,compliant and quiet. Moreover, it should handle very well, certainly better than the Lexus and Cadillac models it competes with. <

    Great point. First time I test drove the 07 A6 I thought it would knock my teeth out. Asked the dealer when I got back if the car really was that stiff. He apologized and said the cars come off the truck with 50psi and he had forgotten to adjust. Since then, I always ask if the inflation has been checked...it usually has not or they are left at 45psi so the tires don't get "flat spots" sitting on the lot.

    I'm still hoping that Audi comes out with a lease program for the A6 so that it is not more costly then the 530xi. If they wait much longer, I will have to wait for the 535x.
  • Tell your dealer to read his bulletins. It was sent out last Monday and expires 3/5/07. It was shown to me by the NJ dealer and the New York dealer was aware of it. The MF is .00027 and the res. did go down to 49% for 12,000 miles however if you take the Audi care for $550 the res. is increased by 1% to 50%. I gave NY dealer a deposit for a blk/blk. There isn't enough time to order to receive before my current Audi lease expires. Premium, convenience, technology, heated steering wheel, 18" wheels and Audi Care.

    Good Luck,
    J
  • Thanks, LexusG...I will check out the Volvo. I'm sure Avalon is similar to the Lexus, but I prefer the extra conveniences offered by the Lex.

    Didn't realize that the Infinity's ride was harsher..may still worth looking it. Bottom line, these are all good, capable cars, and it all comes down to subjective preferences.
  • Wow, you're obviously a loyal Audi driver....I can understand that my "heresy" affects you. But, in my case, I'm more loyal to my buns, than my brand....
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