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Volvo XC90 vs MB M Class vs Acura MDX vs Lexus RX 350 vs BMW X5 vs Cadillac SRX



  • onelgsonelgs Posts: 38
    I must say I'm very surprised to read that some of you are surprised that a dealer would let someone take a car alone or for an extended time.

    Prior to purchasing my MDX last month, I did most of my test driving on Saturday's. The BMW X5 dealer told me to take it for as long as I wanted... I drove it home and back (about 45 minutes). The MDX dealer asked if I could have it back in 30 minutes because it was the only test drive model on the grounds... The Lexus dealer, practically begged me to take the RX300 overnight but I only kept it for 2 hours.

    Personally, when we're planning to spend $40K on a vehicle, we should be entitled to take it for an extended drive... minimum 30 minutes and definitely, ALONE.

  • The first time I took my Highalnder for a test drive, I had to ask that the salesperson to come with me because I didn't know the neighborhood. He seemed a bit surprised and I kind of felt like it was an imposition. Then, I went to the Volvo dealership and looked for a while and asked to take it for a quick turn around the block because I needed to pick me son up from one of his activities. "Take it to go pick up our son, drive it for as long as you like." When I took a Pilot out, it was the only one on the lot. When I was sitting in it waiting for the keys, another couple started going through the car with their salesperson. I was handed the keys and sent off. I offered to have it back quickly. "The response was "Take your time." Same thing when I wanted to take a Murano.

    When I went back to Toyota two after my first test drive and told the salesperson that I just wanted anouther drive as I had just tested out some other makes, he wanted me to run all of my Saturday errands with it. "Keep it for 3 or 4 hours."

    Maybe it just depends on the area you are in.
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817
    It totally depends on the dealership. Usually a hotter-selling model with few demos might lead to the salesperson coming along, and/or a shorter test drive. But a lot of it is just the dealer policy and the salesperson. The MB, Lexus, Volvo, Acura, etc. salespeople seem to tag along on test drives in my area. The local Subaru/VW dealership (Chaplin Subaru/VW) lets us drive their vehicles alone for as long as we want, though. Very low-pressure.

    Come to think about it, the last time we were at MB, Volvo, and Acura, not only did the salesperson come along, they claimed they had to drive us off the lot "for insurance reasons." They'd take us to a public lot or park somewhere and then we'd switch! Strange.
  • I think you have hit the nail on the head, it may depend on what kind of insurance they have for their test drive cars. The terms and condidtions of their policy itself. When I went for test drives, the BMW and MB dealer let me test drive the car by myself and the Volvo and Acura dealer wanted to come along.
  • chile96chile96 Posts: 330
    Leaning heavily towards purchasing an X5 but want to check out the MDX before I commit. Can anyone make any rec's on salesman in the Houston area? Thanks

  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,950
    We frown on posting names (or links or phone #'s, etc.) of salespeople on Town Hall - it incites soliciting, bird dog fee posts, blatant ads, etc.

    But it's ok for people to name the dealer/city or email you privately. Thanks!

    Steve, Host
  • chile96chile96 Posts: 330
    OK - can anyone recommend a dealer in Houston or relate their experiences w/ different dealers in Houston. Sorry to "cross the line" earlier.

  • andrewtran71andrewtran71 Posts: 840
    On the outside, I think the X5 is the best looking of the bunch. But on the inside, I think the MDX is the best looking as it looks more like a sedan on the inside. The NAV on the MDX is definitely the best. The NAV on the X5 and M-series look too small. Car & Driver rank the MDX number 1 and over the X5. So it must be the best, right:-)
  • andrewtran71andrewtran71 Posts: 840
    I agree. It's has roughly the same dimensions as the MDX. I still like the MDX better because the inside of the MDX looks so good like a sedan. The GX470 looks like a heavy-duty, tough-looking, true-SUV as opposed to the "Cross-over" SUVs. But the price difference between the GX470 and the MDX is about $10K!
  • mouseonlinemouseonline Posts: 47
    Try to decide which one to choose.
    Anyone had similar situation?
    Which one did you choose and why?
    Thanks a lot.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    If you have need for a real, actual, AWD/4WD system then the GX is your game. IMMHO it's exploded, over-sized, for a 5 passenger vehicle.
  • alphamalealphamale Posts: 15
    Yet chose the Touregg over both (by a margin!)
      The MDX looks like an Acura sedan.
      The GX looks like an LX470 for $10k less.
      The Rx looks like the ES300 inside
      ADVANTAGE: 2004 RX330! No contest
      I can't include (seriously) the Touregg 'cus of the noticable lack of style, and zero heritage, and zero luxury marque pampering! Too many ain't gots!
      The X5 is now long in the tooth (almost as much as the ML!). Too small inside, too expensive outside, and a weak value next to the new FX!

      The FX and RX definitely raised the bar for luxury, style, innovation, and performance in this class.
      No Aviators need apply!
  • alphamalealphamale Posts: 15
    Sounds like it drives BETTER than the CTS. Just as ugly though. Wouldn't park it on the same continent as the FX/RX!
  • berkkberkk Posts: 2
    Trying to decide between X5 and RX330. I would definitely go with X5 (name, ride, look) but reliability is my concern. I like RX330 because it has a better interior. I do not know much about NAV in these cars. Are they useful? Any suggestions?
  • alphamalealphamale Posts: 15
    They're very different SUV's for different buyers.
      The X5 is sporty and quick. The RX is roomier and more luxury oriented. X5 is better off-road. The RX is a better riding vehicle.
      The RX, I feel, is better balanced vs. the 3.0 X5. More torque, more cargo/back seat space, and has features unavailable on the X5 (or anything else). And the NAV is only matched by Acura for ease of use and speed.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    If the extra cost and the name plate doesn't put you off, and you feel you will have need for true on-road AWD capability, then buy the X5.

    My experience with the RX nav has been that it is so "buggy" as to be useless. Ergonomically its a disaster.

    I currently own an 01 RX, traded up from a 00 RX, and will likely buy a new 04 RX before winter. It will NOT have nav, and I have workarounds for the climate control flaws and the lack of capable AWD.

    Have a 92 AWD Aerostar available for those times...
  • shifty4shifty4 Posts: 53
    I have just begun looking to purchase an SUV. As an incorporated business I can "expense" at least $25K on 2003 taxes on any SUV having a GVWR of greater than 6000 lbs. The X5 and MB320 fit in this category. What about the SRX and the others? Any advice is appreciated.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Text taken from MY2002 Toyota Sequoia owner's manual, page 230, 2nd sentence of 2nd paragraph, left column. Yellow CAUTION high-lighted text.

    "Be careful when accelerating, up-shifting, downshifting, or braking on a slippery surface. Sudden acceleration or engine braking, could cause the vehicle to skid or spin."



    Or else quickly shift into neutral.

    The Sequoia is predominantly a RWD biased vehicle, what did you suppose will happen with a FWD or AWD with front torque biasing?

    Same manual, Page 143, center column yellow high-lighted CAUTION note.

    "Under certain slippery road conditions, full traction of the vehicle and power against 4 wheels (4WD mode) or rear wheels (2WD mode) cannot be maintained, even though the active traction control system is in operation"

    I read this statement as verification of a firmware time-out to prevent the ABS pump/motor from being over-taxed and over-heating due to continuous pump activity requirement.

    This statement would likely also apply to ANY Toyota or Lexus vehicle with ACTIVE Trac and/or AWD using braking to apportion torque, HL, 4runner, GX470, RX300, RX330, Sienna, and obviously the Sequoia.

    You likely have only about 45 seconds of continuous Trac or AWD "duty", then you're left with a vehicle that has 3 open diff'ls.

    And obviously the ABS and VSC would now also be non-functional until the time-out expires (unless you need to do a restart cycle??) and the pump can again be activated.
  • kiiwiikiiwii Posts: 283
    don't forget MDX is an Odyssey with oversized wheels. both are built on the same frame and engineering.
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