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2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Subaru Legacy 2.5i Premium
I actually got mine BELOW invoice, due to some issues with how they built it (they left off the premium package, which had the memory seats). It worked out, so I can't really address the pricing.
If you live in Colorado, you might also want to consider the Audi Quattro's. Their AWD system is excellent and it is a nice car. So you should feel confident driving in CO winters and on your ski trips. It was our second choice behind the BMW.
If I were you, I'd probably opt to get the roof rack that bolts into the roof. Much easier and cleaner to haul skis and boards. You won't get snow, salt, gravel, etc inside your car when transporting your winter toys.
I will second the choice for the SP. With the twisties you get in the CO mountains, you'll never regret it!
Leatherette is a good choice for saving a big of coinage, and it looks great. I opted for leather though (wife's choice).
If you get the premium package, you will get your power seats, sunroof, the wood trim, and center armrest (for 2002). The package changed a bit for 2003, but I can't remember what all beyond the center armrest. With the power seats, you get that memory setting you want.
The sport package will give you great seats, a sport suspension, a few little cosmetic changes, and 17" wheels which are REAL easy to clean.
The cold weather package will give you the folding seats (which I really like) and the ski bag (which I have never used). You also get the electric bun warmers and the spray thingie for the headlamps. Cool thing about that is when it sprays, it is actually heated a bit to help melt snow/ice, that may form while driving in adverse weather.
If you want a better nav system, opt for a 2003. It will be DVD based in 2003; 2002 is CD based and from what people on here have said, not the best. The Japanese cars offer better nav systems. You might want to consider an aftermarket one instead if you choose a 2003.
When considering 2002 vs 2003, remember that while 2003 is a bit more, you also get an additional 1 yr/15000 mile extension to the base warranty... something to consider.
Whichever your purchase, enjoy it. Consider YOUR needs and wants over what anybody on here, including me , say. Some will tell you that to have a true BMW you have certain things, but go with what you want and need and can afford. Any way you go, you will love it. And when you consider an option, consider the costs over the life of the payments you are making. It may cost a bit more now, but over the x years you are paying, how much does it contribute to your payments? Consider that one.
Good luck and enjoy your choice! - Paul
http://community.webshots.com/user/skimblz_ (my 325xi).2002 325xiOxford Green/Natural BrownSP, CWP, 1/2 PPxenonsXM radio, tint
They took two otherwise identically-equipped Audi A6s, one quattro and one FWD, and tried them with and without winter tires. The bottom line is winter tires made a bigger difference than AWD, although AWD+winter tires would be generally best. However the extra weight of AWD negatively impacted braking vs an identical 2WD car. Winter tires may be non-optimal if your winter includes several thaws and extended above-freezing periods. The article also discusses that.
Here's another recent article on AWD vs winter tires in Car and Driver:
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