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Pontiac G8 vs BMW 3-Series vs Lexus IS 350

13

Comments

  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,364
    You are kidding, right?

    No, I mentioned the general public. Not everyone can go to the top of the class medical establishments in this country. The problem is not the best in the country but the availability of the best to all. For every one top establishment and staff there are many that fall way short.

    I know there is no panacea, but it's not as easy for everyone to get the best care every time. There are many less-than-average service providers.

    Just like the auto manufacturers, there are good but mostly disappointing results in the past 30 years. Take Pontiac as a Division. Sad story, IMO.

    Regards,
    OW
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    "The problem is not the best in the country but the availability of the best to all."

    Perhaps, but it's a lot better here than most of the rest of the world. Read an article some time ago about Ben Carson, the renowned neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins. A significant percentage of his patients are of limited means, many w/o health insurance. When we took my daughter to Children's Hospital a few years ago when she broke her elbow, the waiting room was full of what obviously were people who use the emergency room as their convenient (and free) doctor's office. As I'm sure you aware, a community hospital is not allowed to turn anyone away for lack of financial ability to pay. Want to get a unique perspective on the need for immigration reform, talk with an emergency room physician. Of course it's the working class, bill paying general public that gets stiffed in the process. The average American family of 4 is actually paying for about 6.

    I have been known to blast the auto industry as one of the worst examples of American business. For no good reason. It's one thing for the Chinese to steal textile jobs with 20 cent an hour wages. But GM and Ford have lost to everyone. Japan on quality and reliability, Korea on affordability, Germany on engineering and performance. The fact that Porsche makes some of the best engieered cars in the world, then ships 60%+ of them over to the United States because our market can afford them but our industry can't produce them, is just as sad as your Pontiac story.

    GE, by the way, makes the best locomotives in the world in my hometown of Erie, PA. Shipping hundreds to China at a cool $3 million a pop. With union labor no less. It hasn't been easy for them to remain competitive over the years, but they've succeeded.
  • Karen_CMKaren_CM Posts: 5,018
    I don't see anything in the title of this discussion asking for comments on immigration, health care, and jobs going overseas. Please keep your comments pertinent to the comparison of these vehicles.

    Thanks for your cooperation.

    Community Manager If you have any questions or concerns about the Forums, send me an email, karen@edmunds.com, or click on my screen name to send a personal message.

  • kivikivi Posts: 12
    yuk ! there is nothing that would make me consider the Pontiac G8 over the 3 series car. It is precisely because of the product that I that it makes me shudder to consider the two in the same breath. My wife has had several 3 series cars over the years, and mixed into that time period we have had 3 different GM products. The contrasts between them are night and day. They simply do not belong to the same category. When BMW announced the next M3 (the V8), it became the first car in many years to capture my interest, and I will save my pennies for another year and continue to drive my beater in the mean time (wife gets the nice cars). The 3 series cars are amazing cars to drive, and have very very few comparable peers. The G8 does not belong in the same group as any of the 3 series cars. Just because the G8 has a V8, does not make it a contender.
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,364
    Agree with you,kivi. The best thing about the G8 is the car is not even available yet and we know the drill. Boring as usual. Get the Camaro out already!

    The bottom line to this discussion is HAHAHAHAHA! ;)

    Regards,
    OW
  • andres3andres3 CAPosts: 5,325
    being the saviour of GM?

    I don't see any remarkable news on the G8 yet?

    What gives? :lemon:
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Try the FV discussion. This one's a comparo between three vehicles. ;)
  • sknabtsknabt Posts: 14
    In the late '90s I got do drive a buddy's 7-series Bimmer. He claimed he paid over $70,000 for it. I was salivating when I started it up. Probably the biggest automotive disappointment in my life. A horrid drive. The suspension was punishing and the steering required far too much effort at moderate speeds. The hard seats quickly wore out my back and backside. It was a stunningly gorgeous car to eye from the outside but, that aside, a waste. I also got to drive a couple years ago a 3-series. Better ride but not particularly comfortable seats. All this coming from a guy driving a Honda S2000, hardly a car devoted to creature comforts.

    I've never owned anything but Japanese. The Pontiac G8 is the first American car I've seriously considered owning in 30 years. It's top on my list when I replace my beater in 2009.

    Multiple reviews of the Holden/Vauxhall have compared in favorably to Mercedes and Bimmers. Not that it really matters. Because all the Mercedes/Bimmer owners I've known are status buyers. Nobody's going to suggest there's any prestige to be had owning a Pontiac.

    Had I unlimited funds, I'd keep an open mind and give BMW another shot. They've bloated up a bit so their sense of style has deteriorated quite a bit but they're still attractive cars. There's no doubt their interior is going to be far superior in material choices than a G8. But some cost-cutting on Pontiac's part isn't creating any major gaffs from what I've seen and read.

    But we all have budgets we must live within and to find a Bimmer which competes on paper with the G8 in size and power you have to climb up their product line to the $58,500 550i. The entry-level (or maybe not with a 1-series brewing) 3-series isn't in the picture except in price as, per BMWs habit, the price of 'status' will suck most people's wallets dry. The G8 GT will base sticker thousands less than the cheapest 3-series.

    And the costs don't end there. The costs of ownership greatly favor the G8. Bimmers suck premium gas, are notoriously expensive to maintain once they're off warranty, and can't boast reliability to match their fat premium pricing.

    Bimmers are for leasers. I tend to own a car for 10 years so I need something I can maintain. GM's quality is hit or miss so I'll give Consumer Reports a hard look before I take the dive.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,359
    Bimmers suck premium gas

    First off, a bit of research would show that most BMW cars average 22-27 mpg under real world driving conditions. I doubt that a midsize V8 Pontiac will do significantly better. And as for premium gas, just do the math. Let's assume that you drive 15K per year and average 25 mpg- that comes out to 600 gallons per year. If you pay 20 cents more for premium that means you'll pay the princely sum of $120 extra per year. That's 10 bucks a month, or 33 cents per day. Wow.

    are notoriously expensive to maintain once they're off warranty, and can't boast reliability to match their fat premium pricing.

    Really? The maintenance and repair costs for my 10 year old 3 Series have averaged less than $500 per year over the life of the car. That figure includes ALL maintenance and repair expenses as well as three sets of 16" Z-rated rubber. I've replaced one set of pads/rotors, the serpentine belts and idlers, the timing chain tensioner(DIY $55 and 10 minutes), a brake light switch and a thermostat. That's it. And did I mention that it also sees several track days per year?

    I tend to own a car for 10 years so I need something I can maintain.

    Me too; I took delivery of my 3 Series twelve years ago this week. It might not be true in your case, but I've found that many people who discuss BMW repair costs are usually relying on second, third, or fourth-hand information- "My cousin's dentist had a patient who knew a friend that talked to some guy at a party, and the guy told him that he overheard somebody at Walmart say that they read somewhere on the internet that it cost $1500 to change the oil in a BMW." Sure, some people DO pay ridiculous amounts to service their Bimmers, but in most cases it's due to the fact that they made a very uninformed choice when seeking quality service facility.
    As for the G8, I hope it turns out to be a nice quick, and inexpensive car- if it is, I'll certainly consider one for my next commuter sled. I almost bought a GTO, but I couldn't stomach the "Mutated Cavalier on Steroids" exterior styling.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,364
    RB, I considered the GTO but the exterior did the same to me. Now that I see them once in a blue moon on the road, I know I did not make a mistake.

    Again, I do not see anything GM makes that says "i just got to get that".

    Hopefully the Camaro will change that impression. The 'vette is still the only thing worthwhile in their stable of cars.

    Regards,
    OW
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,359
    Again, I do not see anything GM makes that says "i just got to get that".

    I built a Q-Ship Monte Carlo back in the late '70s. Back then, GM was still king of the hill- in the US at least. I've bought a couple of domestics since- both used: a 1984 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe(work beater) and the 1999 Wrangler I still own. I was going to buy a Shelby GT instead of the Mazdaspeed but I couldn't find a dealer who hadn't slapped a $15K ADM sticker on the side window. I suspect we'll see the same situation with the new Camaro- particularly with respect to the SS/Z28 models.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,364
    I was going to buy a Shelby GT instead of the Mazdaspeed but I couldn't find a dealer who hadn't slapped a $15K ADM sticker on the side window. I suspect we'll see the same situation with the new Camaro- particularly with respect to the SS/Z28 models.

    It is why GM will flounder. Suck the life out of the customer! It will probably be similar to the G8. Initial sales will be high due to the low supply high demand. Then, the lack of inventory and long import times will drive customers away. Finally, lack of interest will initiate incentives to get customers back...instead of being fair up front. Sickening!

    It will happen with the CTS and the Lambda triplets. Even the salesman are dumbfounded at the apparent lack of logical execution even when a decent product is introduced!

    Regards,
    OW
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,359
    Initial sales will be high due to the low supply high demand. Then, the lack of inventory and long import times will drive customers away. Finally, lack of interest will initiate incentives to get customers back

    That's exactly what happened with the PT Cruiser and the latest version of the Thundebird. Initial demand was very high, but there was not a lot of cars to move. When supply caught up with demand so many were cranked out that they sat on lots- even with factory incentives out the wazoo. It seems that only MINI has been successful at maintaining a fine balance between supply and demand.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Probably the biggest automotive disappointment in my life. A horrid drive. The suspension was punishing and the steering required far too much effort at moderate speeds. The hard seats quickly wore out my back and backside.

    Exactly the difference between BMW and Caddy. You get blueguydotcom into a 7 series and he would say it's too floaty. :confuse
  • I have owned a 2004 X3 and now a 2006 325i. They both handle great. They are very expensive for what you get. Not very reliable, A/C problems, radio replacement, interior trim worn in a short period. Paint coming off center console and driver's door grip. Weather stripping on both cars on both fron doors had to be replaced a number of times.
    Not much bang for the buck. We are brainwashed with these status vehicles and except all their short comings. :confuse:
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,364
    Going in, that's what I anticipated could be the problem so I leased it. The answer I received was a new wiring harness to fix a air bag sensor problem but since then perfect.

    Regards,
    OW
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,359
    We are brainwashed with these status vehicles and except(sic) all their short comings.

    My experience with owning/servicing/competing in BMWs goes back to 1983, and for me at least, it's not about status. Rather, it's about an involving driving experience and an excellent balance of performance and comfort. My wife currently drives a 57,000 mile 2004 X3, which we purchased as a CPO. The console was replaced at purchase to correct the finish chipping, and an SRS sensor has been replaced. Other that that the car has been perfect. Ditto for my 1995 3 Series, which I purchased new. At 112,000 miles, non-scheduled repairs have consisted of a couple of idler pulleys, a thermostat and a brake light switch. And yes, I do own non-BMWs as well; my garage also contains a Mazdaspeed3, a Jeep TJ Wrangler, and a Triumph Speed Triple.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    A rather obvious question is why did you decide to get a second BMW? I hope you aren't that brainwashed by status. Personally, I don't think BMW has any status advantage over Acura, Lexus, Infiniti, and some of the others. As roadburner says, the driving dynamics are what sets them apart. But if I had a negative experience like you, I certainly wouldn't come back looking for a second spanking.
  • jrynnjrynn Posts: 162
    I have owned a 2004 X3 and now a 2006 325i. They both handle great. They are very expensive for what you get. Not very reliable, A/C problems, radio replacement, interior trim worn in a short period. Paint coming off center console and driver's door grip. Weather stripping on both cars on both fron doors had to be replaced a number of times.
    Not much bang for the buck. We are brainwashed with these status vehicles and except all their short comings


    I own a 2006 BMW X3. It's the most trouble-free vehicle I've ever had. Nothing but routine (which, with BMW, is included in the purchase price) service visits in the 2 years, 1 month I've had it. (Knock on wood.)

    Before my children were born, I owned a 2004 Acura TSX. Even it was in the shop for things like broken seatbelt retractors and other non-routine items.

    But that's all beside the point. I'm posting on the 3 series board because the service loaners I've gotten from BMW have been 3 series and because while I was visiting relatives over Christmas I had a chance to put about 100 miles on a relative's Lexus IS350.

    If I were shopping now for a sports sedan, I'd take the BMW in a heartbeat. Pure personal preference for a car that's "fun to drive."

    But if you can't feel a difference in 20 or 30 miles of test driving -- or if the difference doesn't matter to you -- then by all means, go with a less expensive option.
  • Relative sells them. Tried to keep peace in the family. No more BMWs
  • ingvaringvar Posts: 205
    Not a chance... G8 is a HUGE full-sized sedan. I don't know who will cross shop G8 and 335i.
  • bvdj84bvdj84 Posts: 1,721
    Though the new G8 is a nice upgrade from the previous models. A nice start, a little late, but a nice start to what GM "could" produce. Though performance specs may be close to the BMW, it is not BMW. Certainly has more bang for the buck in the used car market though. BMW, hold its value very well.

    They might cross shop only in the case the G8 is cheaper, but cheaper in value too(amount $$ worth). The BMW has value for the long haul, but, expensive upkeep. I don't think Pontiac can just put a car out there and think people will look at this car and then look at a BMW, Lexus. I think they are in a different class than GM. For GM to be put up higher in class, they are going to need years of repairing the reputation of so so cars. So a few might look at it, some already have. Only because they see it being fun and appealing, much cheaper, but with a little sacrifice in refinement and value.

    Someone would be crazy to buy a "new" G8 now, when the used market is so low.
  • People must have driven the G8 in the snow at this point.
    Please tell us how if you survived.
    ;)
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,359
    A G8-or 3er-with good all seasons or winter rubber will get around just fine.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • Have any of you bimmer fans with their feathers ruffled actually driven a G8? It might surprise you. I havent as my lease doesnt run out for a year but the local Budget rent a car has one and Im going to rent it for a week to see. If it comes close to the 5 Im getting it as I dont care about badges even though the badges have proved to be what I prefer in the past. Ive had porsches,a ferrari, several benzes, a 3, a 6, and 2 corvettes. So I dont care what emblem it is if it goes good. The steering has got to be great and makes up for a lot with the engine.
  • steveinvtsteveinvt Posts: 17
    I have a 2007 328xi coupe with 20k miles. In general, I absolutely love the car. The 3-series is simply the best practical sports car/coupe that you can buy under $50k. It is a fantastic driving experience - the care just does not put a foot wrong. That said, the 3-series is not without its downsides. I personally hate the run-flat tires and, let's face it, you do pay a big premium for the badge.

    The lease on my BMW is up in less than a year, so I am starting to think about what to do next. Having read the reviews of the G8 in the mags, I decided to test drive one yesterday (a GT). I was seriously impressed. I have never driven a non-German car that handled so well. Very balanced and poised. Even with 19 inchers the ride was very compliant. The steering is nicely weighted and feedback is very good. The brakes were also very good - easy to modulate - though stopping distances seemed a tad longer than my 3 series. The v8 power is great with a fantastic, but muted, exhaust note. The interior is kinda black, but the car is nicely equipped and seems well screwed together. All in all, the car compares favorably with the 3-series.

    Now, here is the kicker. Even a fully loaded GT will only run about $30k or so with the GXP coming in well under $40k. To replace my 3-series will run about $44k. There is a lot I could do with an additional 14k plus interest in my pocket, so the g8 (along with the Camaro) will definitely by on my list.
  • My G8 GT is a really nice driver and very powerful. It's very BMW feeling in ride, handling, and power. I don't think you'll be disappointed if you get one. Also, you can do much better than $30K right now. The incentives are excellent. I have seen on the various G8 boards folks paying $25K to $27K for loaded GTs at this juncture.
  • pafromflpafromfl Posts: 47
    I traded a 2005 330i sport premium with 18k miles for a 2009 G8 GT sport premium and have no regrets. The BMW was more refined, handled slightly better, gave better gas mileage, and had more luxury features, but the G8 GT is just way more fun. A Rotofab cold air intake and Magnaflow street cat-back exhaust system restored the muscle car sound.
  • bvdj84bvdj84 Posts: 1,721
    Incentives will help, but even at those prices, they do not meet the real world values. Which are much lower in resale. Even with few 1,000 miles. You will already be so upside down on your loan versus real world value, it will take you years to break even.
    I would not buy new at this time. You will take a huge hit.

    I have seen G8's piling up at my dealer, the also have them sitting in the overflow lots, so perhaps a deal could be had in your area. Of course, their new. Check the used lots first. Just being realistic.:)
  • Let's face it, very few new vehicle purchases are sound from a financial point of view. I would agree that buying a used G8 GT for say $19K to $22K (depending on mileage, condition, etc.) may make more financial sense for some folks than spending $25K to $27K on a discounted new one. But even at this price, it's a performance bargain. Heck, a V-6 Malibu or Accord will cost you this!

    In my case, I chose to buy a new G8 GT because I was able to get it at the cost of a used one, using $3.5K in GM credit card monies I had accumulated and taking advantage of the red tag discounts when I purchased mine at the end of December. In the end, my final cost was $19.5K, plus tax. As you can imagine, I would have been hard-pressed to find an extremely low-mileage used one at that price. So in my case, it was worth it to buy new.

    With that said, could I trade-in my car now and get at least what I paid from a dealer?--maybe, maybe not. I would probably be able to get more money from a private sale, pending I could find the right buyer. I purchased this car, however, with the intent of keeping it for some time and only driving it in "good weather" as a pleasure car. So, buying new was important to me and resale value was not as much of an issue at this juncture. If I keep it in great shape, maybe I will luck-out and get a decent price for it some day like some of the low-mile '04-'06 GTO's are commanding today should I decide to sell.

    I would advise anyone looking at used G8 GT's to be careful to know what they are buying. Many of the used ones on the market now are former rental cars. Most of these vehicles have 8K to 15K miles on them and no telling if they have been abused or beat-up. Many folks, however, have been very happy with their rental car purchase, with no problems. If you are okay with a former rental car, that's great, but just know what you are getting to make sure everything is fine with the car. It could be a great value!

    Lastly, there is a glut of unsold new cars from other auto manufacturers as well. As for the G8, GM had its best month yet on the sale of G8's this past February with 2,705 units being sold. This was a 50% increase from the previous month! Also, this figure was on the heels of competing BMW 5-Series sold last month. Here is a link to the February GM sales figures:

    http://media.corporate-ir.net/media_files/irol/84/84530/sales_production/Deliver- - - ies_February_2009.pdf

    Just my 2 cents.
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