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Entry Level Luxury Performance Sedans



  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,833
    Thanks for your response. Since I've been monitoring the German boards over the past years, I've read many of your posts. I'm on the slippery slope, sliding toward the propeller, but still have a few years left (I hope) with my present vehicle.

    While the financially responsible thing to do is to pick up an off-lease vehicle, I've done a number of business trips to Germany, and can't think of anything better than driving my own new ED XXX to the places I've learned to love.

    OTOH, the Infiniti M is very interesting, so long as I'm willing to do without the manual and the fold-down rear seat.

    Oh, wait, those are the only two things I care about, besides something resembling luxury.

    Perhaps BMW does know what it's doing.
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 3,001
    Hello, Odessit:

    My prefrences are for a Luxury/Sport sedan (TL) as opposed to Sport/Luxury (325). Also, as a lifelong skier and denizen of the mountains of Vermont, New Hampster and Maine I prefer front wheel drive. I'll give up the 9 or 10/10ths handling advantages of RWD for the traction (and packaging) of FWD. The TL handles very well for my tastes. Having said that, the tires on the base TL are TERRIBLE in the snow! That'll teach me. I considered a 325x/330x but I decided I didn't need the added weight and complexity of AWD. I've gotten along just fine without AWD lo these many years in the snow/mountains. Not to mention my New England frugality just wouldn't let me spend so much more for the BMW, especially since I knew the '06 were on the way. Similarly equipped, the TL is less money. Had I really wanted the 3, I would have bought it and I'm sure loved it. But, for me, the TL was a bertter car and value. I also shopped the G35 and Mercedes E320 ( a different animal, I know, but it is such an appealing car to me. Again, I just didn't see the value proposition).

    Of course now with 20/20 hindsight and a N.E. winter behind me, a rwd 3 with decent all-seasons would probably have better traction than my TL with the Bridgestones (they're supposedly all-seasons as long as none of the seasons include snow) in the snow! The best laid plans...

    Anyway, had I gone with any of the other ELLPS I'm sure I would have been just as happy as I am with the TL. A wonderful class of cars, tough decision. You really can't go wrong.

    Oh, yeah. Frisconick: Will you adopt me and buy me an Aston Martin, Daddy? :)

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

  • if u had a choice of these 2 sports sedans which would u pick?
  • jsamsonjsamson Posts: 23
    Definitely 330i,
    this may sound crazy ,330i is the better car but is300 exterior is superior IMHO
    FYI guys, i drive a G35, but i could probably afford a G35 w/ the nav.....
    And i could probably afford an aston martin, but id also have to live in it as well and eat only one meal per day
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 53,706
    I'm sort of biased toward the BMW...

    I think the question should be... Is the BMW worth $5K more?

    And, if it isn't $5K more, then the price of the Lexus is too much...



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  • frisconickfrisconick Posts: 1,275
    Ok laurasdada, what color do you want? :P
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 3,001
    Hmmm now Frisco. Did we just form some sort of Internet Message Board formal contract? Kinda like a verbal contract?

    How 'bout a nice gun-metal gray? I'll even help you with your new car dilemma by giving you a good deal on my Abyss Blue TL. Once I've got the Aston, of course... ;)

    Now you weren' just kiddin' me, were you Dad? :surprise:

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

  • frisconickfrisconick Posts: 1,275
    Actually, I prefre the TL over the Aston. Why do you want an Aston, when you have a beutiful Abyss Blue? :P
  • odessitodessit Posts: 140
    Look, if laurasdada will not take the Aston – I’ll be happy to take it. Actually I prefer bmw better, so instead of one Aston I’d settle for 5 BMWs :D
  • armandarmand Posts: 178
    Try putting good snow tires on your TL - I did and it made a big difference.
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 3,001
    Thanks, Armand. I'm considering it, I know it'll make all the difference. I think even just getting a better rated in the snow all-season would be an answer, with FWD and all the electronics.

    Frisco: Actually, I'd like to keep my TL for daily fun. The Aston would be for weekend fun. Why do I want an Aston? Why did I want the TL? Why does anybody want anything? Because it would fulfill some need, want and desire deep within my inner-being. And chicks would dig me... ;)

    Odessit: Hands off, I asked first!

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

  • frisconickfrisconick Posts: 1,275
    lol Chicks do dig nice cars, and bikes, I own a HD too !!! :P
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    Only shallow ones.
  • frisconickfrisconick Posts: 1,275
    Good point blue!
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    CARS!!!! Cars that are within our category ...

    Thank you!
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 53,706
    This is just like Jeopardy..

    "Could you rephrase your comment within the context of the discusstion title?"


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  • gfp1gfp1 Posts: 2
    The BMW 3 series / Audi A4 comparo was inexcusably bad. Of course a 330 is going to wipe the floor with with a 2.0, so what's the point? There is absolutely no reason that a supposedly well-respected automotive magazine shouldn't be unable to scare up two comparable cars for a comparison test. What's next, a comparison test between a Porsche and Fiat? Inside line is wasting our time.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    LOL! Yeah!
  • draknaddraknad Posts: 39
    It's almost amazing. It seems recent posts support what I tried to post earlier. (eg. #3608, why people buy BMW)
    Finally there's no hesitation to question a BMW's value. It almost seemed people are afraid to question BMW's, since it's been foolishly jamed into minds...BMW's are "high performance, high quality...". Mostly by magazines(press), friends(who like the label), and the high price to own.
    But as these posts say, it's mostly opinion, and actually, BMW's probably aren't worth the high price for similar performance.
    One thing I still don't see many people admitting, is BMW, Benzes, and Audi's low reliability and high cost of maintanance. I feel this is in the direction of pride. No one likes to admit cost paid, vs more cost spent to maintain.
    And it is fact, BMW's do break down more then average, little old (2003)
    benz clsdiff class
    and it does cost more once it's in shop (vs Asian, US brands). Of course it depends who drives, but when the car is in the shop, pull out the wallet.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    One of the biggest problems that I have with folks who like to take issue with owning a BMW is that they like to dwell on the negative by slamming BMW because they are “unreliable and expensive to maintain”. That line of bilge has been repeated so often that to some at least, it has become fact. Sorry, but I have never seen any evidence, scientific, anecdotal or otherwise to support such a claim. The simple truth is that cars, ALL cars, are far more reliable now then they have been at anytime in history, and BMWs are some of the most reliable.

    Ahhh, buy the naysayers will say, "Oh yeah! Well just look at the statistics referenced in the above post. You'll see that Toyota has 196/PP100 vs. BMWs 262/PP100 rating."

    Uh-huh, well personally both numbers look pretty damn good to me, and furthermore, comparing the full North American BMW line (all fairly complex performance/luxury cars) to the full line of Toyotas (starting with no/low option strppo econo-boxes with far fewer components to fail) seems to be a bit disingenuous if you ask me. To my way of thinking at least, a much more fair comparison would be Lexus vs. BMW, and while I haven't seen those numbers in a while, if memory serves, the gap was much narrower. Even still, the report shows that for every four problems reported by a Toyota owner, a BMW owner will report roughly five. So much for being “unreliable”. I did find it interesting to note that BMW and a few other European manufacturers were singled out in the following quote: “Porsche, Jaguar, Saab and BMW perform well above the industry average in dependability…” as being quite reliable.

    Another knock that I continually read about BMWs is that they cost a lot of money to maintain. That too is pure fabrication. The only out of pocket expense a late model BMW owner should experience for the first 50,000 miles is tires. Period, full stop, the end. Everything else is covered under the full maintenance program. Once a car has enough miles and/or years to no longer be covered under the maintenance program, they seem pretty reasonable to maintain, especially given their very long service intervals called for in the Owner's Manual. Basically, change the oil every year or 15,000 miles, change the brake fluid every two years and the coolant every three or four years (IIRC). As for the scheduled "Services", those occur every 30,000 miles, and while the cost can range from $600 to over $1,000, when you consider the number of miles that cost gets amortized over, it just ain't that much money.

    Said another way, my bet is that if you were to do an "Apples to Apples" comparison of a new E90 3-Series vs. a new second generation Lexus IS, my bet is that the BMW will cost less money for general maintenance and repair than the Lexus for at least the first 100,000 miles. How much less? Probably not too much, but less is still less.

    Me personally, I'm waiting to drive the IS and the E90 back to back, and I'll go with the one I like the best. Their relative reliability and the cost of maintenance is, in my mind at least, not a defining issue.

    Best Regards,
  • geekaygeekay Posts: 51
    When you fork out 1000's more, one thing you would expect is more reliability. The IS is the best of the lot in that respect. Every one has their own story to tell, I have not really seen BMW being run down here, in fact it is the other way around, there is wholesale plagiarizing of hyperbole to describe the BMWs as compared to the competition. It is as if use of flowery language and the name is enough to make their cup run over. Reminds of an old chestnut: Guy buys a BMW and drives it OTD, car stops 2 miles later. Owner calls dealer, car is inspected, there is no engine. Owner asks, how did it drive 2 miles? Oh, that would be the reputation, says the dealer, usually gets it so far. Have a nice day folks.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    "When you fork out 1000's more, one thing you would expect is more reliability. The IS is the best of the lot in that respect."

    Uh-huh, so, where are the scientific numbers to back your claim up. Just because I might say, "Car 'X' is the most reliable or the least expensive to drive and maintain" doesn't make it so. The same thing with what you've written; saying it doesn't make it so.

    Best Regards,
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    One thing I still don't see many people admitting, is BMW, Benzes, and Audi's low reliability and high cost of maintanance. I feel this is in the direction of pride. No one likes to admit cost paid, vs more cost spent to maintain...and it does cost more once it's in shop (vs Asian, US brands). .

    Ah but because of the all inclusive 4 yr/50k warranty, maintaining a bmw comes down to new tires once a year. If you're gonna keep the car for more than 3-4 years then maintenance costs become an issue with any car.

    Then again, if one buys a G/TL, you gotta get oil changes, tune-ups and so forth.

    So for the millionth time - because you're beating a dead horse - total cost to maintain of my 330i - $2000 over two years. All spent on tires.
  • potemkinpotemkin Posts: 196
    One thing I still don't see many people admitting, is BMW, Benzes, and Audi's low reliability and high cost of maintenance.

    I bought a BMW 318ti in August of 1995 and drove it daily for 9-1/2 years putting 112,000 miles on the odometer. In that time I had one (1) mechanical failure -- the ignition switch went out and need to be replaced. I think it cost me something like $275.00, I forget.

    I'm sorry, but it would be disingenuous for me to confess to reliability problems I haven't had. I'm not saying that BMW's are problem free (no car is), it's just that reliability ratings can be misleading. Just because it says that the average maintenance cost of a BMW is X amount of dollars, doesn't mean that everyone who buys one is going to wind up spending that amount. I'm sure there is someone out that bought one just like mine that has sworn off BMW forever after the gazillionth trip to the repair shop, but I'm not that guy. Quit accusing us lying just because we won't reinforce your preconceived notions of German car reliability.

    Besides, if you look at the numbers closely, it appears that the odds of buying a unreliable new car in the US is pretty slim no matter what make you buy.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Actually people are afraid to question the value of a Japanese car. Friend has been a long time Acura nut, but has been frothing at the mouth due to issues. My BMW was in any shop 5 times in 3 years. That's the way it should be, and I daresay out of my BMW owning friends, it is.

    And when they are out of warranty, Japanese vehicles cost as much to repair/maintain as German.

    Can you say $3K for a transmission?
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    Really cheap. My buddy's 540 had a tranny issue. over $5k later it was replace/fixed. Ouch. From what i've heard most automatics when they go bad costs that kinda dough now. And people wonder why I run from automatics... :D
  • draknaddraknad Posts: 39
    Nother myth people don't understand. (BTW: this is another discussion statement)
    FWD vs RWD
    SCCA Touring Car pts standings
    TOP 6: FWD lead points
    7/10 FWD lead point standings.
    So you think RWD performs better then FWD?
    FWD cars regularly outperform RWD. And we're talking prof racing.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 20,619
    I've tried that argument a number of times. Its like trying to argue against a religion. At some point, you wind up talking in circles and convincing nobody of anything.

    '12 EX35 Journey AWD; '14 Jetta TDI wagon; '98 Volvo S70 base; '14 Town&Country Limited; '09 LR2 HSE. 42-car history and counting!

  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 53,706
    Well.. maybe that is because you are wrong!! ;)

    It could happen, ya know?


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  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 20,619
    have you been talking to my wife?

    '12 EX35 Journey AWD; '14 Jetta TDI wagon; '98 Volvo S70 base; '14 Town&Country Limited; '09 LR2 HSE. 42-car history and counting!

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