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Luxury Performance Sedans



  • tlongtlong CaliforniaPosts: 4,737
    Personally, would not have a Volvo
    [ or any other car ]
    past the mfr mty....

    Cool! You can prop up the economy and the automakers, and I can get a well-depreciated luxury sedan for less money and get 100K miles out of it. :shades:
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,497
    "Cool! You can prop up the economy and the automakers, and I can get a well-depreciated luxury sedan for less money and get 100K miles out of it."

    I live to serve...
    - Ray
    Doing my part to 'prop up the economy'.
    With [ extended ] mfr wty to past where I will likely sell or trade...
  • jimbresjimbres Posts: 2,025
    Agreed. So many people don't understand that post-warranty repairs generally cost less than new car depreciation.
  • tayl0rdtayl0rd Posts: 1,938
    True enough, jim, but that new car depreciation is amortized over the term of the loan, and you don't feel the sting unless you want out too soon. Whereas, a [major] repair bill is the equivalent of being hit in the face w/ a 1x6 plank when you aren't looking! :surprise:
  • jimbresjimbres Posts: 2,025
    Whereas, a [major] repair bill is the equivalent of being hit in the face w/ a 1x6 plank when you aren't looking!

    And that's why I maintain a sizeable emergency fund - so that I can cover big bills without breaking a sweat.

    I know that putting aside money from today's paycheck so that you can deal comfortably with tomorrow's unpleasant surprises is so, I dunno, prehistoric, but I am old & set in my ways.
  • tlongtlong CaliforniaPosts: 4,737
    True enough, jim, but that new car depreciation is amortized over the term of the loan...

    Who said anything about loans?

    Pay cash and save those payments and that interest, and you have enough for your next car in a few years.
  • jimbresjimbres Posts: 2,025
    Strongly agree. We haven't financed any of our cars since the late 80s.

    I also think that cash buyers (1) keep their cars longer, (2) spend more time researching their purchases & (3) are less likely to buy impulsively. That's been our experience, at any rate.

    One more thing: Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.
  • tayl0rdtayl0rd Posts: 1,938
    Well, it's not like paying cash for a car makes it immune to depreciation and repair bills.
  • Mark..... How is it going with your A4 premium sedan? Your best Audi yet out of maybe 10 you have leased/owned in the past?
  • My 2009 A4 Prestige with Audi Drive Select, 19" sport package, almond wood trim, navigation+rear camera and power rear sunshade is either "about the same" as the outgoing A6 or, for the detail minded, a substantial upgrade in several key areas.

    First off, the B8 A4 has a 110+" wheelbase -- very very close to the C6 A6. The C6 is a bit wider and from front to rear is longer -- but the 6+" wheelbase stretch made the essentially unchanged C6 A6 (unchanged from 2004) less interesting.

    The B8 is RWD biased AWD and due to its configuration, now, has better F/R weight balance than the C6. The B8 is lighter, too. To me, the RWD bias is, frankly, more academic than anything else, but I do understand the possible advantages of the RWD bias over the C6's 50 50 split.

    The biggest plusses for the B8 (at least as I have it configured) are the previously noted F/R balance and RWD bias coupled with the 19" sport suspension option (which means the tires are 19" and 35 series) and sport seats and sport steering wheel (with paddle shifters). The icing on the cake is the Audi Drive Select option which essentially gives you 27 different "individual" tuning points for the engine/transmission, suspension compliance or cushy-ness and dynamic steering settings.

    Equipped in Prestige trim, the B8 is essentially, sitting behind the wheel, about 97% C6 in terms of everything you can see and touch, press, turn or activate. The -3% is that the C6 is a tiny bit wider and has sexy led interior lighting built in at approximately the upper third of the four doors. The C6 also had front AND rear heated seats, whereas the B8 only warms the fronts.

    The B&O sound system is a huge improvement over the C6 Bose unit.

    The sport seats, too, are an improvement over the A6's comfort seats.

    The blind spot warning system is a must have and the single pushbutton for start and stop engine is an improvment.

    The 258 pound feet of torque from sub 2K rpm with the upgraded 6 speed tiptronic make me only long for ONE thing from the 3.2 A6 -- the sweet engine sounds at full cry (the A4 is simply OK in this respect).

    Overall, I believe the 2009 A4 is as deserving of the "luxury" label as was the 2005 A6; but, time marches on and I assume the A4 remains firmly in what, today, passes for near-luxury sporty sedan. However, the A4 is far more capable in terms of its ability to carve around corners and, with the ADS dynamic mode engaged, far more confidence inspiring in any kind of spirited driving.

    In comfort mode the A4 seems comparable to the A6 in terms of "being, er, comfortable," but 35 series tires are a bit less forgiving than the C6's 40 series 18 inchers, so you do tend to "feel" the road more with the A4 (for me, that's a good thing.)

    I did not get premium paint, so I did save hundreds of dollars over my C6's pricey $775 paint job -- but still, my A4 with the optional exhaust tips and the now optional Audi Assurance (all maint is free for 50K miles) came in at $49K and change. My outgoing A6 was $53,286 by comparison -- frankly the A6 seemed more of a "bargain" if any car that is north of $45K can be so designated. The lease payments are about the same and I did get a 50K lease (the C6 was a 45K lease.)

    The mildly facelifted C6 with the supercharged engine would certainly be a car that I would not kick out of bed for eating crackers, but its price has swelled so much that one equipped as close as possible to my 2005 A6 would have been about $6,000 more. Given that I rarely have passengers, the A4 somehow seemed,er, an environmentally astute choice. Well, if you say it fast enough and emphasize the 4 cylinder engine that uses FSI and turbo charging, it could well be, uh, "astute."

    Anyway, the B8 for 2009 did NOT come with the 3G MMI which means I had ZERO learning curve, but it also means I did not get the hard drive, the new graphics and the other improvments that time and next gen technologies typically provide.

    I've had the A4 about 15 months, it has 25K miles on it and save for replacing the stock summer only tires with UHP A/S at 7,000 miles, it has had no issues other than normal maint. It is quick, fast, fun and, as my wife is wont to say, "goes like a snake in a rat hole."

    With the current economic realities, despite having had over 2 dozen of these wonderful cars, I only have one negative comment, and that is, "I am beginning to question the VALUE of virtually ANY European car, and that, unfortunately, includes this one. Man, they are GIVING AWAY Cadillac AWD FE2 suspension equipped CTS's.
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,497
    .. to read your updates, Mark.
    - Ray
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,238
    What Ray said.

  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Equipped in Prestige trim, the B8 is essentially, sitting behind the wheel, about 97% C6 in terms of everything you can see and touch, press, turn or activate.

    Eh... I'm not quite sure I'd go that far. The B8 has loads more technology than previous A4s, but I feel like the other side of that is they had to cut costs dramatically and it shows a bit too much for a premium car. The door pulls are rock hard plastic, and the center stack and console look and feel a bit cheap IMHO. The interiors in the B5 and B6 A4s simply blew away the competition from BMW and Mercedes. The B8 doesn't accomplish that. It's class competitive, but that's about as far as I can go.

    Ultimately I would have a hard time choosing the A4 2.0T over a G37x. The A4 is a great looking car, but the just updated G has a more attractive front end than the '07-'09, and is also quite handsome. The 3.7L engine isn't the most refined in the world, but neither is the 2.0T, and of course the power difference is massive.

    The new S4 is a fantastic machine, but the A4.. I don't know, I just don't feel like it's worthy of a $50K price tag.
  • My perception or comparison, if you like, was from this perspective:

    I got out of a 2005 Audi C6 A6 which was pretty well loaded and walked over to my new 2009 Audi B8 A4 (about 15 months ago). The switchgear, the steering wheel (although my A6 did not have paddle shifters), the console, the wood, the feel of the leather, the seat's firmness, the instrument cluster, the soft plastic on the dash, the a/c vents, every knob, button, leaver, etc -- had been "transplanted" or copied from the A6 (my previous A6.) The look, out the windshield, virtually everything about the B8 was taken from the A6. The volume knob, the sat nav, the voice recognition, the bluetooth, etc etc etc -- at least 97% the same as the outgoing A6.

    I was not -- indeed I cannot -- compare the B8 to a new G37x, I haven't been up close and personal to a G for 1.5+ years. Since my wife has a 2008 BMW, we do spend a fair amount of time loitering at the BMW Store -- and I do believe that the B8 still has a much nicer interior than the current 3 series (and 5 series even).

    I did look at a 2008 and, as I recall, a 2009 Infiniti G (but not the 2010's) and AT THAT TIME, the G's interior had been updated from the first gen's cheapo look, but, AT THAT TIME, I still felt the Audi interiors were ahead of the game. Today, you may well be correct.

    Another way to look at this -- the 2009 A4 uses an A6 design first brought to the market in 2004 on the C6 when it first hit the market as the brand new generation of A6's. I have not spent any time, period, looking at 2010 A6's, so although I assume there have been some interior upgrades, I also assume they are not as significant as the replacement A6's will be when the C7 generation comes out.

    Hope this clarifies. :shades:

    P.S. I did conclude, too, with my own out loud doubts about the VALUE prop of the A4 (and, frankly, every other European car) when for less money you can get a new 300HP AWD sport lux optioned CTS (which does have a pretty nice interior treatment, too.) TODAY, based on the local paper here in Cincinnati, the CTS would be the "biggest bang for the buck," even after reading the fine print on the deals offered.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    and I do believe that the B8 still has a much nicer interior than the current 3 series (and 5 series even).

    Mmmm.. I'm not sure on that one. I haven't spent any time in a new 3 or 5, but at least as far as appearance is concerned, I think the 2008+ 5 series looks significantly richer and more upscale than the B8 A4. I didn't like the initial '04 interior at all, but BMW made significant improvements as part of the '08 freshening, and I think the current 5 now gives the A6 a run for its money, and beats it in some areas. The 3's center stack is on the cheap side, though BMW is rather more liberal in doling out the wood trim than Audi is in the A4, which sort of makes up for it. Overall I'd probably give it to the B8 over the current 3, but its not a total knock out as with the B6 over the previous gen 3 series.

    Audi improved the start button in the C6, and the gray trim piece that surrounds the instrument cluster and NAV screen was painted silver, but that's pretty much the end of it. Other than the rear lights and the new engine, the C6 really hasn't changed since '05.

    BMW has stepped up their game that much further on the 2011 5, which has a look nearly identical to the X5 and 7 series. It embarrasses the new E class on the inside, and Audi is going to have their work cut out to beat it with the C7 A6. The 2011 M has by far the best interior Infiniti has ever done, so there's challenge from that too.

    The new A8 and the A7 concept still have that old Audi "surprise and delight" interior magic, and I hope some of that makes its way into the C7.

    The CTS just doesn't appeal to me. I've never liked the blocky "Art & Science" look, and while the interior does look nice at first glance, when you actually get up close it's a lot more Acura than Audi. I like it better than the C-class (I like pretty much everything better than the C-class), but IMO the G is the much better value champ.

  • An Infinit M almost became mine back in '05 -- and, for me, Infiniti still stands as the Japanese BMW. The way folks here are praising the new G37, I guess I'd better check one out before I succumb to the Art and Science's low price allure.

    I did test the latest CTS -- and I have NOT tested a recent Acura, so your observation is probably right on. In any case, the CTS seems, today, to be a lot of car for the money.

    Now, having said that, I thought the M I almost bought was also a lot of car for the money compared to the Audi (but then Audi gave me a super deal that leveled the playing field.)

    I have been so loyal, so almost blind, I wonder if I am just stuck with the "nothing even comes close" to a German car mentality that it will take a lot of pulling to not re-up again. But, OWWW, $50K for an A4 2.0T, even with all the toys, it seems a lot.

    As I recall, it is damn near impossible to get a G UP TO $45K -- although maybe that has changed, too.

    This recession has just made me think more of bang for the buck -- as if "I've been spending too much on cars for too long, 'specially when I can get what SEEMS to be the same for less." Now, having said that, I simply ASSUME that all the accolades the CTS gets are pretty well deserved and, if that assumption is valid, well, why pay more unless you really do get more?

    Then, I wake up and remind myself I still hold on to the notion that you generally get what you pay for.

    Oh hell, maybe I'll just get a Jeep.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    As I recall, it is damn near impossible to get a G UP TO $45K -- although maybe that has changed, too.

    The G37x is pretty much all out of ideas at $43K. That gets you tech, premium, sport, and NAV, including active cruise and headlights, sport seats, BT, the top level sound system, and all the rest. And from what I hear, Infiniti dealers are not exactly asking sticker for these.
  • I just got a new Blackberry 8530. Took my car to the dealership and was told Blackberry's are tricky with the MB bluetooth system. Can't transfer my contacts into the car. Anyone have a similar situation? Anything I can buy to help transfer contacts? thanks.
  • You might try the website for Blackberry. In the past they have had updated software for some cars that are having difficulty pairing with the Blackberry.
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