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Luxury Performance Sedans

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  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,751
    personally, I'm doing mine at double the pace. So every ~7500

    Actually, that's a little early - but the length of time the oil is in the engine is just as important as the miles. I put on about 10,000 miles a year, so my oil changes are once a year, on average - that is whenever I keep a car that long - which is rare. (lol)

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,405
    I drive mine pretty hard, and I also take the turbo into account. If it was a more mundane car with more mundane driving, I'd probably extend it.

    I just did 2 track days with it this week, so I don't think I'll even wait till 7500 this time, as a matter of fact.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

  • james27james27 Posts: 433
    The BMW computer takes into account the way you drive. Personally, I believe that the engineers that build the thing have a clue what is required to keep it running well. At least with my dealer, they'll do a free oil change at 12-months, or at the computer designation, whichever occurs first. Having sent in used oil for analysis on my last car, I believe that a good synthetic oil can easily last as long as the computer thinks it can. I was using mostly Mobil 1 on my last car, and 10-12K intervals were fine after testing verified it. The BMW uses more oil in the sump, a better oil (IMHO), and revs lower than my old car, so I have no qualms about believing their computed oil change intervals. The big thing is the TBN, as long as that stays above zero, and you don't have significant dilutions from fuel or other contaminants (say from a leaking head gasket - antifreeze; or rings, fuel) the oil remains suitable for normal operations. IMHO, replacing the oil/filter earlier is a waste of money.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,405
    And, according to BMW, the trans fluid is lifetime (although the trans manufacturer says otherwise), so I'm still going to opt to not follow manufacturers recommendations, and that includes how they've programmed the oil life computer.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,751
    ...so I'm still going to opt to not follow manufacturers recommendations, and that includes how they've programmed the oil life computer

    I am going to hazard a guess that Mercedes, Volvo, BMW, Audi, etc., program their computer chips to "average wear and tear" specifications and then even provide the owner with "ranges" depending upon use and driving habits. As an example, Mercedes Benz computer chips provide two "wear and tear" specs depending upon usage - one based upon mileage and one based upon "timeframes".

    In other words, if Mercedes states in its manual that the oil should be changed according to the car's "computer" read out, their recommendations are for 1 year intervals or 10,000 miles, whichever occurs first and that is what the readouts provide.

    At first, my "monitor" indicated number of days to the next "A" or "B" service, but then started showing miles to the next service because of the type of usage. I believe BMW and the rest do the same thing.

    I would change the oil in my car at a maximum of 1 year or 10,000 miles, not any longer. BMW uses 15,000+ miles, but dealers offer a complimentary oil change/filter change once each year, no matter what the mileage is. So they too believe that oil should be changed at least once per year.

    If I was going to keep my Mercedes E350 for a few years, I would change the oil every 6-8 months because I do mostly stop and go driving, with a little highway mixed in between. So my engine is being started and stopped frequently.

    I have not seen any long term results of keeping synthetic oil in an engine for 15,000 miles or longer, no matter what the timeframe, but I believe 15,000 miles is too long to wait to replace oil in a high performance engine. Just MHO.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • james27james27 Posts: 433
    It's not just the car manufacturers that recommend a max of one year, many oil manufacturers do as well. It's my belief that some of the buffers, etc. in the oil have a life based on time once introduced to an engine, whereas many of the wear reducers are more based on heat (not generally a factor for most people) and total rpms. One of the magic numbers is the TBN (total base number)...this indicates the oil's ability to neutralize acids. In all of the tests I've seen, albeit not a huge amount, the TBN was still a decent positive number after 11-12K miles on my old Infiniti. They called for an oil change at a 3750-mile interval! That had less oil, turned about twice as fast on average at cruise, and was a less sophisticated engine and a lesser oil. They used a crude oil based lubricant, I switched to a synthetic, and was easily able to get 3-4x the oil life without showing up any more wear metals when analyzed (I did a baseline test of the crude oil based, then did more as miles accumulated until I found my sweet spot with the oil and vehicle, then just used that interval and tested then...all was well). I will say that testing did save some major work...while it was not obvious on that car that it had started to use some antifreeze, it did show up in the oil analysis, and I was able to fix that before any damage occurred.

    IMHO, instead of guessing, (probably) wasting a significant amount of money, why not just send a sample in for analysis the next time it's changed and see how much, if any, life is left. Depending on what you want them to test for, you can get one done at a certified lab for in the order of $15-50. Those in the $20-25 range cover the major important items: viscosity, TBN, metals, water, gas, and most wear inhibitors. While I haven't done it yet for this car, mine's two years old now, has less than 19K on it, and because of time and mileage, has had three oil changes (strange, but while they'll do a free one at a year, they don't reset the computer, and when it calls for an oil change, they'll do it again - had I driven all of those miles in less than a year, it would have been around 18K miles).
  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,751
    It's not just the car manufacturers that recommend

    James, thanks for the info. Well thought out and documented. Appreciate your input.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,751
    edited April 2013
    I just finished reading a review of the 2014 Mercedes E 350 Sport Sedan (which I will be taking delivery of next week) which revealed that it has an electronically assisted power steering system. I have never driven a vehicle with electric power steering - I have always had power steering driven by hydraulics which was belt driven off the engine.

    I do know that there are pros and cons to this type of power steering such as a lack of "road" feel/feedback to the driver, increased fuel economy due to one less pump driven directly from the engine, over/under steering due to the lack of "feel" of the road, fewer moving parts and reduced overall weight, to name a few.

    If you have any data or opinions regarding this system, I would greatly appreciate your input and feedback. Would I notice any negative handling of the vehicle? Does this system have the same or similar feel of regular variable power steering (hydraulics)? Will I be disappointed with the cornering and handling?

    Thanks, in advance for your input and/or opinions.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • Why don't you test drive the car first then take delivery.
  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,751
    Why don't you test drive the car first then take delivery

    That is exactly what I intend on doing! I always go over a new car with a fine toothed comb - dings, scratches, dents, paint defects, alignment, etc. Once I have accomplished that, and I am sure everything is AOK, I then consummate the deal.

    I always make sure they loaded the tires with *nitro fill, that the car is driving straight, that the steering wheel, when centered, keeps the car in a straight line, etc.

    I go over the paint, sheet metal, etc., even before we finalize numbers.

    I was in the automobile business from 2001 through 2008, as both a salesman and then, for several years, as a sales manager. You'd be amazed at what we used to get from the Port of Jacksonville in terms of damaged, brand new cars. Sometimes it was the "carriers" fault, sometimes the cars were damaged during the unloading process, etc.

    Thanks for the heads up, billyperksii. Appreciate your input.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,275
    edited April 2013
    on the fire, but billyperksii probably comes from the cohort who is stunned by the concept that anyone would buy (or lease) a car that they have never driven, or at least driven a similar model. Given the "mixed" reviews that electric steering has enjoyed over the past months, particularly with BMW, I tend to throw in with him.

    That said, I've bought two cars, one a brand new model (special order at that), with no test drive whatsoever. When they arrived I did an inspection and drove away -- no problems, no regrets.

    From your post I'll infer that when you do your test drive you'll be perfectly prepared to walk away if the steering feels weird. I, on the other hand, would have become so invested in the new car deal that I'd probably go ahead and take delivery of the car, whether I liked the steering or not.
  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,751
    From your post I'll infer that when you do your test drive you'll be perfectly prepared to walk away if the steering feels

    Precisely! I do not "need" a new car - mine is only 8 months old with only 6500 miles on it. If the car does not corner or handle or accelerate the way I prefer, I just move on.

    I was reminded by my service manager today that the GLK350 I had as a loaner several months age had electric power steering. From what I experienced, I could not tell the difference, to be quite honest. But I intend to take the car on the Freeway to make sure I enjoy the way it tracks and corners.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • Mike- I apologize if I sounded abrasive in my previous post but I was commenting on the fact that, I usually test drive the car first then make a deal. Lastly, i go over the car at delivery for any anomolies.
    As a matter of fact, my current car (2009 TL SH-AWD) has the electric steering and I find no fault with it.
  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,751
    Mike- I apologize if I sounded abrasive in my previous post but I was commenting on the fact that, I usually test drive the car first then make a deal. Lastly, i go over the car at delivery for any anomolies.
    As a matter of fact, my current car (2009 TL SH-AWD) has the electric steering and I find no fault with it.


    Honestly, I did not take your previous post a being abrasive at all! I took it as being helpful so as to make sure I checked out the car before I took delivery.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • almattialmatti Posts: 164
    I test drove a 2013 with electric steering. Felt very loose at slow speeds and when coming out of the turn, the feedback was awful IMO. It was drawback to the car which otherwise was excellent. The Audi A-6 I felt had a superior feel, ride, and handling (A-6 3.0T Quattro). The Infiniti M37X did too, but thier 7AT is quirky - at leaset in my 2010 G37x it is.
    So far in my replacement shopping (replacing a lease ending on a 2010 G37X in August), I've driven the E350 4MATIC, the Audi A-6 3.0T, M37X, and will look at the Cadillac XTS with AWD and the Lincoln MKZ AWD. I am also looking to see what the new Infiniti Q50 "feels" like. Comes out July 1. But I'm looking for a little more room than the G37X I have now.
  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,751
    "I test drove a 2013 with electric steering. Felt very loose at slow speeds and when coming out of the turn, the feedback was awful IMO. It was drawback to the car which otherwise was excellent."

    Well, I drove the new E 350 home today. I did not notice any difference, but I'm no officienado based on my driving habits. The new Collision Prevention Assist is a new standard feature on the car. It uses radar to alert the driver of an impending collision with alarm, seatbelt tightening, and a combination of braking and steering maneuvers to prevent the collision. I hope I don't ever need it.

    I did not notice the loose steering you were talking about, but again, I'm no expert in that technology.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • nrwaynenrwayne Posts: 44
    I'm planning to get a 2014 and wonder what the differences are between the 528 and 535. I know about the engines, but wonder if the 535 also comes with other equipment not standard or optional on the 528. If it's only what's under the hood, I'd think the 528 might be a better choice if fuel economy is important. Having priced both, however, the differential seems slim. I've been told that the 528 is more than adequately quick, though certainly a step or two behind the 535. Comments, please. Thank you.
  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 3,505
    Best way to see the difference is to go to BMW website. Clicking on "Download Standard/Optional Equipment" tab gives you pdf file with list at the glance. Looks like the major differences are: engine and standard leather (535 yes, 528 no which is nuts), availability of manual transmission (535 yes, 528 no) and availability of extra options on 535 (e.g. optional higher quality leather as part of Individual Composition Package, also Dynamic Handling Pack). 550i adds std Navigation and availability of "Executive Package". You can see it in link below and click the mentioned tab.

    http://www.bmwusa.com/Standard/Content/Vehicles/2013/5/528iSedan/Features_and_Sp- ecs/528iSedanSpecifications.aspx

    2012 BMW 328i wagon, manual and sports package. No. sold in the US: 1. Probably.

  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 2,645
    The Edmunds folks seem to love their long-term XF. They drove it to Alaska and back, IIRC, no issues to report. Arguably, more stylish inside and out than the 5, E or A6. And, now offered with AWD. If I have to grow-up and get a year-rounder in these here Boston parts, right now the XF and A/S5 would be the front runners (don't necessarily need four doors, but want at least four-ish seats).

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

  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,405
    Absolutely. I've been waiting for the used 5.0s get down into my pricerange. But I don't want to give up my 135, so I'll probably have to wait until that is paid off anyway.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

  • ghstudioghstudio Posts: 951
    I've been working my way through new car options to replace my e350 CDI at the end of the lease. I just stumbled on the A6/7 Audi's with turbo diesels coming out this summer...dealer actually had an a8 diesel in stock. Hmmm!
  • Regarding your question about electronic steering. I really like it on my new e350.

    A conventional hydraulic system wants to provide more boost as engine speed increases and cannot moderate boost with road speed.

    An electric steering system provides high assist at low speed and low engine speed, while backing off as road speed is gained. Actually engine speed is no a factor at all since the system is not powered off a crank pulley.

    Hope you enjoy your new car.
  • peatnickpeatnick Posts: 26
    The minister of design and finance decided it was time for me to get a new car, test drove the BMW 528xi, Volvo S80 AWD, Audi A6 and Mercedes-Benz E350 4matic as well as the Passat TDI since I'm coming out of a hybrid and the mpg's on all these depress me. The VW was eliminated by the minister of design so I'm trying to weigh my options.

    Audi has the biggest back seat for my teenage sons, it even comes in a diesel but that msrp's higher than the MB

    The MB is a 2014 and drives the nicest, has the highest MSRP and OTD price, though our local dealer offered me $1,000 under invoice

    The BMW is a turbo 4 cylinder that gets the best mpg (important as my sales job logs 20K miles per year) , local dealer want $1 over invoice but its still $5K less than the MB

    The Volvo is the cheapest, has plenty of leg room for the boys. Even though the mpg is worst it runs on regular gas, helping to neutralize operating costs

    All have been approved by the minister so looking for any anecdotal experience from owners of each of these models that shopped the others:

    Why did you pick your car over the rest of the mid size luxury field?

    What was your shopping experience like?

    Any lessons learned?

    Any pitfalls?

    TIA
  • ghstudioghstudio Posts: 951
    Lease is up on my E350 diesel....great car, but I want something with a little more pep. I've narrowed the field to an Audi A6/7 TDI, Bmw 535d or E550. Yes, the E550 is the performance champ in the group, but it's premium fuel and all internet connectivity requires you to buy the useless Mbrace which just bothers me. I've driven the A7 TDI and it is actually fun..I though I was driving a gas car...responsive, quiet..just great. Haven't driven the BMW yet..it's not out, but reviews tell me it should be equally good. I need to order one of them....but which one?

    I should add that I'll probably lease for 36 months and the A6 TDI, 535d and e550 are all within $10 of each other on a lease with no money down....so that doesn't help.

    The best deal, btw, is the GS350 which is about $100 less per month, but I just felt no excitement driving one with the f package....it was, to me, a dull car.

    any thoughts appreciated.....
  • marvinlee1marvinlee1 OregonPosts: 43
    I fully agree, James27. An additional point in favor of higher mileages between oil and filter changes is that filters actually filter better as they accumulate impurities. Sounds contradictory to most folks, but filters plus a layer of dirt, debris, whatever one calls it, filter out more particles. Limits exists, of course. Too much dirt increases flow resistance to a level that forces the oil to flow through the bypass valve, hence no filtration on that part of the oil flow. Too much time and media deterioration can also increase the risk of filter media failure, creating unwanted, unfiltered, flow channels. But both risks occur at very high mileages.

    My commercial tractor has an air filter restriction gauge that tells when to change the filter, but has no similar gauge for the oil filter. I change the latter on an engine hour basis, per the manufacturer's manual. The filter is changed every other oil change, again per the manufacturer.
  • I have two options in front of me:
    1. Buy a used 2011/2012 Certified BMW 535 Xi under 25000 miles
    2. New Audi 2013 A6 with 3.0 t

    There is a difference of 6K between the above model & Used BMW is somehow expensive.

    What is the general recomendation on Audi A6 vs BMW 535 Xi ?
    Which one has less maintenance charges
    In terms of reliability which model is more reliable

    Thanks
  • Get he audi...new car warranty and more fun to drive.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,778
    A reporter is interested in speaking with a car buyer who recently purchased a new sedan, but did not consider any of the German brands (such as Volkswagen) during the shopping process. If you can assist, please contact pr@edmunds.com by Wednesday, October 23 2013.

    Moderator
    Need help navigating? stever@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    Greetings to the Luxury Performance Sedan Forum buffs: The fall of 2004 was a magical time for Acura RL and a forum like none since, Except for maybe this one. But it's good to come back into Edmunds on occasion and see what's new on the street! I still have the 2005 and just turned 102,000 miles. For me Edmunds provided a wonderful environment to talk cars, get educated on them and have a lot of fun reading the posts. Some brilliant, some clever, some newsworthy, some helpful and some belligerent and getting the boot.... what fun!
    JJAcura
  • lexusguy, you post too much !
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