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BMW 3-series vs Lexus IS

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  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    About 150 posts ago, I questioned who was it that claimed the IS350 has the fastest automatic transmission in the industry. I acknowledged that I haven't driven the car, but from previous experience with the redesigned 2006 GS300, that claim seemed excessively optimistic.

    The response was, essentially, that I have no credibility for even asking the question, since I haven't driven the car. After all, other than 6 gears, the GS and IS transmissions have nothing in common. Oh, and by the way, that unbiased authoritative source was none other than an in-house Lexus Engineer.

    Think that's bad? Now we have one self proclaimed transmission (and everything else) expert that claims that there is essentially no difference between a Sequential Manual Gearbox and the Lexus torque converter automatic.

    No, wait. It's not that there is no difference, it's that the Lexus slushbox is actually better than BMW's SMG.

    No, wait. It's not that the Lexus slushbox is just better than BMW's SMG. Hell no. It's better and faster than Ferrari's F1 transmission.

    How does this expert know this? Why of course, he drove a Ferrari F1, himself. On that lunch break he wasn't test driving the various AMG models (which, of course are also slower than the IS's slushbox). Probably just drove his Toyota Highlander up to the local Ferrari dealership and asked the sales manager to throw him the keys for a quick test drive to the 8,500 rpm redline. :confuse:

    If said expert thinks I'm the only one who finds this pitifully humorous, add "notvery" to the front and remove "ness04" from the back of your tag name. :)
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    "Care to elaborate? "

    Check the links i posted.

    As an aide, did, get it out of your system. Just get a nsx or an is350 and you won't need to post 50 times a day.
  • None of the links you posted dyno'ed the engine using the SAE method. Wheel HP's are not the same thing as engine output.

    Please keep the discussion on topic; you probably don't want me to attack you on how you jumped gun with your last post.
  • A friend of ours just purchased an AWD250. I sat in front and back to check it out. We are looking at a similar vehicle but have children. I have to tell you that as luxurious and impeccable as the IS is, well, it isn't built for anyone of any height. At over 6ft, I was very cramped in the drivers seat and front and rear hip and shoulder room was definitely not available. This car is for my wife only and not me. What a car tho!
    By the way, the dealer brought her new car, picked up her trade and signed papers at her house. Because she leased thru Lexus, she rec'd an iPod Nano. After she had the car a week, there was a recall on the seatbelt. They came to the house to pick up the car and return it after repaired. They also gave her a gift choice, high-end coffee maker or a watch, etc. for the inconvenience of the recall. You don't suppose that is why they score so high in customer satisfaction and I bet she won't report repair issue cuz if she did their initial quality would plummet.
  • Now we have one self proclaimed transmission (and everything else) expert that claims that there is essentially no difference between a Sequential Manual Gearbox and the Lexus torque converter automatic.

    Who said that? I pointed out repeatedly that the implementation details are different. However, SMG is a new form of automatic, as clearly illustrated in the BMW M3 marketting. Lexus is not even involved in this picture; it's torque converter M3's market place being taken up by SMG M3. Stop the strawman tactic.

    No, wait. It's not that the Lexus slushbox is just better than BMW's SMG. Hell no. It's better and faster than Ferrari's F1 transmission.

    BMW's SMG implementation is actually much better than Ferrari's F1 trasmission. Go try both and you will find that out first hand. I don't think I ever made the claim that IS350 automatic is faster than SMG or Ferrari F1; is it actually faster? perhaps, depends on which generation of SMG.

    As for the rest of your post, if you are looking for a habitat for unlimited personal attacks, you are clearly searching in a wrong place. BTW, I may not be an expert, but I certainly have posted more facts and technical details than you have so far, and frankly, you don't want to engage me in [non-permissible content removed]-for-tat personal attacks either.

    BTW, I did not even have to go to the dealership to test-drive a Ferrari with F1 tranny; one of my collegues had a 360 Mondena with it.

    Comes to think of it, I was not even the one who questioned your credibility 150 posts ago . . . what's this load of personal attacks coming from?
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    "Please keep the discussion on topic; you probably don't want me to attack you on how you jumped gun with your last post."

    Heavens, no, i wouldn't want you to attack me!

    I'll try to not go off-topic by introducing cars like the NSX to the topic.
  • When someone claims achieving 255hp in a 3L and 302hp in a 3L turbo is manifestation of incredible engine tuning . . . it is only faire to point out what's been achieved 15 years ago, don't you think? That's why I did not bring up cars like NSX per se, but merely the 3L engines in them.

    BTW, I'm no great fan of HP/L . . . as you said, Yamaha and Honda motorcycles beat them all. I was not the one who held up HP/L in the BMW engines as some kind of achievement.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    for personal confrontations, folks.

    Let's talk about how these two specific cars compare with each other ... we haven't really been there much lately.
  • I think recalls are factored into the reliability data. How a company treats its customers on recalls factors into custom satisfaction data.

    Frankly, it is entirely conceivable that Lexus get more complaints in the next few years as it pursues performance. We shall all wait and see.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    " why do new bmw's need tune-ups in the first 4 yrs??? brakes/rotors??"

    If you need them they are free.

    "october 2005 CAR AND DRIVER ISSUE"

    Apparently you are one of the few that are bothered by the issues with the test vehicle.

    "the ACURA TL outperformed the 330i in lane change mph AND SKIDPAD. "

    But try hitting a curve at 90 in an Acura and mashing the gas. It's the real world driving experience where BMW leaves the competitors in the dust, including the IS350.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Why don't we talk about what's been achieved a 100 years ago then? It's only fair if you talk about 30 years ago then lets compare anything to anything. And where did motorcycles come into the conversation and what do they have to do with the current conversation.
  • But try hitting a curve at 90 in an Acura and mashing the gas. It's the real world driving experience where BMW leaves the competitors in the dust, including the IS350.

    IMHO, all three can do that quite well, nobody is being left in the dust. Much is dependent on tire grip and road surface condition. I hit curve at 90 and smash gas quite often in my Highlander ;-) Scare the heck out of my wife, but the AWD and VSC combined can handle the situation quite well.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    "Who said that? I pointed out repeatedly that the implementation details are different. However, SMG is a new form of automatic,"

    You're playing with semantics. For most of us a torque converter differentiates an automatic transmission from a manual. A CVT still has a mechanism for loosing the belt(similiar to a torque converter). A clutch in any way, shape or form can't be confused with a torque converter.

    An SMG with a clutch and servo is still a manual because it has a clutch and not a torque converter.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Scare the heck out of my wife, but the AWD and VSC combined can handle the situation quite well.

    The difference is a BMW will not engage the VSC and will accelerate smoothly to 130 with the pedal nailed to the floor.

    I know you won't admit it, and you will discount the experience but i would like to try that very thing out between you and me side by side. You in your highlander, me in my e90 3L and let's see exactly how these two cars compare at full throttle out of a curve.

    It does not sound like you have much experience with RWD entry level sports sedans.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    But try hitting a curve at 90 in an Acura and mashing the gas. It's the real world driving experience where BMW leaves the competitors in the dust, including the IS350.

    Since when is hitting a curve at 90 "real-world", as you say? It's this kind of "real-world" driver that ran me into a guardrail because they were going to fast.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    "It does not sound like you have much experience with RWD entry level sports sedans."

    Or manual or SMG transmissions. Except of course, for that "friend's" Ferrari 360 F1. Apparently, the only one that didn't come out of the factory with a 13 millisecond shift time. Right. :confuse:

    Verifiable facts, personal opinions, unsubstantiated claims. There is a difference. ;)
  • "But try hitting a curve at 90 in an Acura and mashing the gas. It's the real world driving experience where BMW leaves the competitors in the dust, including the IS350."

    Yes, I too, almost cr**ped myself laughing when I heard that.

    When a e90 wins slalom it goes like this: See, in real world driving it is faster than anything else. When the IS 300 won the slalom it sound like this: Noooo, slalom driving isn't real world. Real world is taking 90 degree turns at full speed and flooring it. Tiring to say the least.
  • You are confusing "hydraulic automatic trasmission" with "automatic trasmission." Most automatic trasmissions made in the last 50 years have been hydraulic automatic trasmissions, but do not have to be.

    Automatic trasmission is defined by its "automatcity" (the ability to engage clutch and switch gear without direct user imput), not by "slack." Even SMG has degrees of "slackness," which is pretty much what the different programs are picking.
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,665
    Engines

    As I recall the NSX engine itself did not make the car competitive. It was the complete package and particularly the handling that caused the car to be rated high in comparison tests.

    If I remember correctly…it was usually slower on timed specs than the competition.

    I know you meant JUST the engine…the 1993, 270hp and 210 lb-ft (at high rpm) of torque does not compare very well to today’s modern engine. The turbo BMW 3 series of 300hp and 295 lb-ft at 1500rpm definitely has a more flexible engine...if specs are your thing that is.

    Now the IS does have good engine specs, impressive hp and torque, it is virtually on par with the regular 3 series as far as hp per liter. They do have the larger engine, if you can do the larger engine for the same price, and keep fuel consumption down, it is definitely an advantage.

    As far as being technically superior, I wouldn’t rate either the IS or 330i over the other.

    What really needs to be compared is what type of engine you can get for what amount of dollars. The M3 (I6) is an example of a normally aspirated engine that produced excellent power but is a little pricey. I would rate the 2.0 S2000 engine above the NSX only because it could be produced for much fewer dollars.

    I recently clicked on the Edmunds “Head2Head” comparison. For 26K MSRP you can get a 300+hp engine in a chevy, sure it’s a V8 with a 4speed tranny but still gets 28 mpg on the highway.

    Ok nobody wants an Impala here, especially me, but my point is…was…something or other…turned into rambling :D
  • Comming from the same person that finds it so hard to believe that the 6speed AT in the 306 hp IS 350 is in no way different than the 245 hp GS 300 without driving.

    I think I was the one who questioned your credibility, and I see another hole in it right now:

    "Verifiable facts, personal opinions, unsubstantiated claims. There is a difference."

    You were saying, my good sir...

    If anybody's credibility should not be challenged, or even insulted in this forum it should be brightness04. He has never verbally abused a single poster on these boards even when people with little knowledge or experience have questioned his. Their reasoning behind their arguments/attacks are that (like yourself) they have never done the same, so therefore, somebody else would not have the opportunity to have done what they said they have done. Very little behind their words.

    Now, I don't know about you, but I would wager that even if the GS 300's tranny is the same as the IS 350's, the fact that they are different enigine's although from the same GR series family of engines, the gearing is different. Heh, then again, you haven't driven the IS 350. Nevermind.

    I'd also wager that brightness04 is the most knowledgeable person when it comes to phyisics on these boards, period.

    More to it than saying it isn't an auto just cus it sounds weird to you.

    :confuse:
  • I was merely pointing out that 90 in a curve like you suggested is no sweat for any of the three cars, or even for much less sporty vehicles, provided that road surface has good grip. If the road is slippery with snow, your E90 3L will slide off the road at 90 long before even the lowly AWD highlander does.

    I owned two 5 series for over a decade, one of which was actually lighter than today's e90, and it did not even have VSC. So I know RWD sports sedans quite well.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Ok nobody wants an Impala here, especially me, but my point is…was…something or other…turned into rambling

    it's ok...we're all guilty of that at some point or another. :-)
  • The main problem with the Ferrari F1 was not engagement speed but the abruptness. Try reading comprehension for a change.
  • As I recall the NSX engine itself did not make the car competitive. It was the complete package and particularly the handling that caused the car to be rated high in comparison tests.

    Only the engine was brought up in this discussion because I was replying to a post about engine. The rest of the car is quite out of the scope of this forum.

    I know you meant JUST the engine…the 1993, 270hp and 210 lb-ft (at high rpm) of torque does not compare very well to today’s modern engine. The turbo BMW 3 series of 300hp and 295 lb-ft at 1500rpm definitely has a more flexible engine...if specs are your thing that is.

    In case you missed it, the 320hp 325ft-lb Supra turbo engine of 1993 was comparing to the 2006 BMW turbo engine. The NSX' engine was being compared to the 255hp and 215lb-ft normally aspirated 3L. For 15 year's difference, you are welcome to draw your own conclusions on both the turbo pair and non-turbo pair.

    BTW, I agree with you that HP/L is a fool's game. What really matters is power, torque and fuel consumption, plus some other detail such as packageability . . . after all we do want some crumple zone ;-)
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    If the road is slippery with snow, your E90 3L will slide off the road at 90 long before even the lowly AWD highlander does.



    And you higlander will slide off the road before a Zamboni! :D Your example is highly irrelevant.

    I never bought my BMW because of the way it drives on snow. And I have never slid off any road so far these past eight years in snow-blown Toronto.
  • I'd like to see a Zamboni that does 90 on either straights or curves ;-)

    BTW, the irrelevance was exactly what I was trying to point out with KD's 90 in a curve scenerio . . . none of the three cars would be left in a dust at those speeds. It all boils down to tire and road condition if any of them starts sliding.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    I say let's get back to comparing the subject vehicles and we get farther from that than we've ever been.

    If anyone wants this comparo to continue, they need to step up and post something appropriate to the topic.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    still waiting for someone interested in the subject of this discussion to join us ...
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,665
    I got one…

    Does anyone have any specs on the automatics such as 5-60, 30-50 etc?

    Since we compare auto to auto here, because most people choose automatics, then the 0-60’s quoted from magazines would be irrelevant because “most” people won’t hold down the brake with their left foot and apply the gas with their right…releasing at the optimal rpm.

    Then again, most people 0-60 is probably 30 seconds—60 seconds for my wife :)
  • rats13rats13 Posts: 42
    Wow spirited discussion on this board. My 2 cents: I just ordered a 330i the main reason over the IS350. SIZE. Not just rear size. I'm 6'1" and the IS350 is too cramped inside. Trust me after owning a Honda, Acura and 2 Lexus, I waited for and wanted the IS 350 in the worst way but it is just too small.

    Granted I'm not an autofile spliting hairs on 0 to 60 times I just want car that is fun to drive. Honestly I drove the IS350 and the 330i back to back at a Lexus event and I felt like the IS350 was a bit noisier and had more body sway on the course.

    As far as looks I started out dreaming of the IS350 but now I find myself liking the E90 more (maybe a self-preserving thing).

    My 2cents your mileage may vary
This discussion has been closed.