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Entry Level Luxury Performance Sedans

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Comments

  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,863
    My local Shell has Premium at $3.95. Diesel is $4.15. It's hard to justify the extra for diesel fuel.
  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    My local Shell has Premium at $3.95. Diesel is $4.15. It's hard to justify the extra for diesel fuel.

    Same here in Colorado - Shell has PUG at $3.75 and Diesel at $3.95.
  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 5,534
    edited March 2013
    Yeah, Florida too. Diesel almost never falls below regular, most of the time it stays either above or just below premium gasoline per gallon, probably more often above by 10-20 cents. It is not available at my Costco station, where I fuel every week (i.e. the effective differential is even higher, as Costco charges less than say Shell or BP). Considering diesel engines cost more and need more maintenance, the mpg differential needs to be really substantial to offset the fact that I don't like how it drives vs. nice smooth gas engine. At least 20% better mpg number before I even give it a time of my day.

    2018 430i Gran Coupe

  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    edited March 2013
    At least 20% better mpg number before I even give it a time of my day.

    I also suppose it depends on the type of driving you do and what you use your car for.

    My wife has been getting about 22MPG on the last few tanks now that she's been in her new job for 3 1/2 weeks. This is a 2010 Mazda CX-7 that requires premium. She likes the security of AWD here in Colorado and the hatchback capacity since she is now toting about a lot of materials for the job.

    About the closest diesel equivalent would be the Jetta SWG - but it doesn't offer AWD. A small or mid-sized SUV with a diesel and high 20's combined fuel economy would be just about right. 20% above 22 is 26 MPG.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 13,530
    Diesel in NY and CT are always higher than 93 Octane by at least $.15/ gallon

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2017 Pilot Touring AWD, 2019 Tacoma TRD Sport 4WD

  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    I fail to see the logic, though.

    My local Shell has Premium at $3.95. Diesel is $4.15. It's hard to justify the extra for diesel fuel.

    12,000 miles/25mpg = 480 gallons of fuel. X 3.95 = $1896
    12,000 miles/30mpg = 400 gallons of fuel. X 4.15 = $1660

    That Diesel is more expensive is an illusion. The reality is it's less expensive over time.
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,863
    But the upfront $3,000 premium would require almost 13 years to break even.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 34,047
    NYcarguy made a good point about this. You are paying more for a better engine upgrade. Not that much different on the BMW than paying to go from a 328 to a 335 or a 6 to an 8 on a 5 series.

    2019 Acura TLX A-spec 4 cyl. (mine), and 2013 Acura RDX AWD (wife's)

  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,863
    You are paying more for a better engine upgrade. Not that much different on the BMW than paying to go from a 328 to a 335 or a 6 to an 8 on a 5 series.

    But IIRC, there may be some other upgrades as well. Does upgrading to the diesel give you anything else?
  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 5,534
    edited March 2013
    Only if you consider diesel a better engine. Gas mileage is just one part. To me diesel is not a better engine for a sports sedan overall. Minivan, SUV, pickup truck, yes. Small sedan, sports sedan, convertible, coupe, no. Just an opinion, of course.

    On price point, $3000 price difference can be partially recouped at resale, so it may not need 13 years to pay it off. However, as I just stated, I consider diesel an inferior choice in terms of driving experience, thus it is not sufficient for me to just break even with gas. To put it simple, to even consider diesel, it would need to pay itself vs. gas in just two-three years, so after five or six I could really say it was cheaper.

    2018 430i Gran Coupe

  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    You beat me to it. Diesels, especially if they somehow have a manual transmission, are absurdly high on resale value compared to their gas cousins.

    Case in point. I can't literally buy a working/reliable Mercedes 240 Diesel with manual for under $4K. Almost 40 years old and it's still hard as hell to find a good condition one as nobody wants to sell theirs. Recent VW TDIs are also incredibly hard to find used as people just don't sell them unless they are literally falling to pieces.
  • scwmcanscwmcan Niagara, CanadaPosts: 399
    I'll give you the sports sedan engine, as well as sports car, but not the every day sedans, the way the majority of people drive them they wouldn't even notice the diesel engine, except for some very slight noise dig fence, in fact most would prefer the low down torque of the diesel. Even in the ports sedans, in Europe they claim the best 3 series is the 320 d with the six speed manual ( I may not agree either BTW, just stating the Euro Mag's opinion).
    Also so far at least part of that $3000 is extra equipment as the diesels here tend to be a higher trim level than the base car, the manufactures are not offering base level trim with the diesels ( they are doing the same so far with most hybrids as well). I think this will start changing and we will see what the true cost of the diesel option is ( though reall with direct injection, turbo gas engines seemingly becoming the norm there is not much extra on a diesel anymore beside the particle filters, and there is talk of them be required on the gas engines soon too). Also someone said that diesels require more maintenance, I am wondering where that cames from?
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,863
    I can't literally buy a working/reliable Mercedes 240 Diesel with manual for under $4K. Almost 40 years old and it's still hard as hell to find a good condition one as nobody wants to sell theirs.

    I don't think you can really compare the availability of a 40 YO car with a modern mainstream car.

    Recent VW TDIs are also incredibly hard to find used as people just don't sell them unless they are literally falling to pieces.

    IMHO, current diesel buyers go out of there way to purchase diesel. Of course they are going to hold onto them - their only really choice is to go buy the same vehicle, just a few years newer.
  • graphicguygraphicguy Edmunds Poster EmeritusPosts: 11,553
    edited March 2013
    Rightfully or wrongfully, diesel cars really are little more than niche vehicles here in the U.S. Not sure why, except diesel fuel, at least in OH, usually runs from 30 cents/gal more than petro....I've seen the delta go as high as 75 cents more for diesel.

    In short, it makes no economic sense.

    Diesels do offer a little more low end torque, but they also usually give up some HP and higher end revs in the process. So, I consider that a wash.

    Car makers try and try (mostly the Europeans) but they just won't get a foothold for all the reasons stated.

    For those who are fans of diesels, there are a few models to look at. I don't think they'll ever remotely be widespread, however.

    pletko....it's going to be hard to find any 40 year old car in great shape, not only diesel Benz's. :) I don't think VW brings all that many diesels to the U.S. to begin with compared to their selection of gasoline cars that they bring here, so TDIs will be hard to find.
    2018 Acura TLX 3.5 SH AWD A-SPEC
  • flightnurseflightnurse Valley of HellPosts: 2,178
    Interesting so the cost difference is only $4/tank between the two, now if you smoke or go to start buck you spend more on your vice than a tank difference. Plus you get 30% better MPG..
  • flightnurseflightnurse Valley of HellPosts: 2,178
    Considering diesel engines cost more and need more maintenance,

    What is the price difference? .20/gallon and if your tank hold 20 gallons you are talking $4/tank difference not much of a difference. However, you get 30% better mileage.

    More maintenance? In which way?
  • flightnurseflightnurse Valley of HellPosts: 2,178
    The break even point all depends on how much you drive? When we were at the VW dealer looking at the Passt, they had a chart that showed the break even point on all their TDI. The average drive drives 15K miles a year for VW the break even point is roughly 4 years, of course the longer you hold the car the more it pays you back.

    For some, owning a diesel is not the best think because they do not keep their cars long enough, for me and my partner it does since we hold on to our cars longer than most.
  • flightnurseflightnurse Valley of HellPosts: 2,178
    Rightfully or wrongfully, diesel cars really are little more than niche vehicles here in the U.S. Not sure why, except diesel fuel, at least in OH, usually runs from 30 cents/gal more than petro....I've seen the delta go as high as 75 cents more for diesel.

    In short, it makes no economic sense.


    Hey Graphic the price difference you are talking about is this between Premium unleaded and Diesel ? Since BMW recommends PU in their cars this is the only way to look at it.
  • graphicguygraphicguy Edmunds Poster EmeritusPosts: 11,553
    edited March 2013
    FN....my low end comparison was between Premium and Diesel.

    For example, filled up yeasterday. Premium was 3.72/gal. Diesel was 4.09/gal.

    Makes no financial sense for Diesel.
    2018 Acura TLX 3.5 SH AWD A-SPEC
  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 5,534
    edited March 2013
    There is an extra maintenance around emission systems due to regulations. Depending on the manufafacturer, it may amount into urea injection tank refills (Mercedes Benz), or some other emission control activities. It would be best to check with the manufaturer or dealer on the maintenance schedule. I would not believe everything dealer posts on their sales floor - or to be exact, if they say it's 4 years, it probably is 6 to 8 to break even.

    BTW, I don't believe modern diesels would last as much as older ones. There are already indications (in European markets) that the new crop suffers from same issues that undercut gas engine's longevity (electronics, sensitivity to fuel quality, leaks in turbos, etc.).

    2018 430i Gran Coupe

  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 5,534
    edited March 2013
    It still would if you got 25% gas mileage and resale value was high. If diesel gives you only 10-15% gas mileage boost, not so much. Also, some ELLPS (not many) may not require premium gas, which would make needed differential even higher.

    2018 430i Gran Coupe

  • albert72albert72 Posts: 180
    check out this link - the new diesel engines are vastly more complicated than the old school MB diesels.

    Crunch the numbers, ie greater cost to buy, greater cost of fuel vs increased mpg. Also try to figure out incremental cost to maintain. Depending on how much you drive and the % of city vs highway, it could be 8 years to breakeven and in that amount of time, a lot can happen regarding fuel prices, disparity in price between gas and diesel and of course, drivetrain technology and improved mpg.

    http://www.myturbodiesel.com/1000q/DPF-Adblue-FAQ-VW-Audi.htm
  • graphicguygraphicguy Edmunds Poster EmeritusPosts: 11,553
    2018 Acura TLX 3.5 SH AWD A-SPEC
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 20,724
    I wonder if the AMG version of the CLA is also a Front-wheel driver. It's generally agreed that 200-225 hp is the practical upper limit for FWD. 300HP would be wasted in such an application and result in either excessive wheelspin or constant intervention on the part of electronic traction control.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • scwmcanscwmcan Niagara, CanadaPosts: 399
    I am pretty sure (95%) that it is AWD
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 13,530
    The AMG version of the CLA will be 4Matic AWD.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2017 Pilot Touring AWD, 2019 Tacoma TRD Sport 4WD

  • graphicguygraphicguy Edmunds Poster EmeritusPosts: 11,553
    andy...I think it's based on a FWD platform with a Haldex AWD addition.

    Pretty interesting performance at a pretty good price point. Like the looks, too.
    2018 Acura TLX 3.5 SH AWD A-SPEC
  • flightnurseflightnurse Valley of HellPosts: 2,178
    VW will be bring over TDI version of their Tiguan for 2014, as well as the Audi Q5. Audi has been importing their A3 in a TDI and Quattro for some time. The combined MPG has been in the high 20's to low 30's.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,181
    There are many FWD cars with 270-310 hp and I don't think the conditions you describe are that common or much of a problem.
  • flightnurseflightnurse Valley of HellPosts: 2,178
    Graphic, if your car gets 28 on the high and the diesel gets 39 on the highway, that $8 difference goes away very quickly (BTW the 39 on the high is the low side.)

    580 miles per tank for PU
    780 miles per tank for Diesel
  • flightnurseflightnurse Valley of HellPosts: 2,178
    Dino MB is moving away from the Urea Injection finally, BMW will be doing that too. Audi and VW never used it. The Chevy Curze and Mazda 6 wont be needed it either. So this extra maintenance is null issue.
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 20,724
    There are many FWD cars with 270-310 hp and I don't think the conditions you describe are that common or much of a problem

    I used to own a 225 hp '91 Taurus SHO and I can tell you it was close to the limit of what I'd want in a FWD car. I'm quite unaware of "many" FWDs with that kind of power, the only one I can think of is the current SHO, not exactly a hot seller.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,181
    edited March 2013
    Don't know where you've been but any late model Accord V-6, Camry V-6, Mazda- V-6, Passat V-6, Impala V-6, Malibu V-6, Acura TL, Buick LaCrosse V-6, Hyundai and Kia turbo 4s, Altima V-6. There are probably others. All of these have around 270 to 300+ HP and all are FWD. I've driven several of them aggressively and as long as the tires are good and the road is dry they do just fine. They are heavier than your early SHO of course but they probably would give that Yamaha engine in your SHO a good race.
  • scwmcanscwmcan Niagara, CanadaPosts: 399
    And the current who is AWD
  • sweendogysweendogy Left lanePosts: 1,307
    edited April 2013
    While I agree fwd and sport do not always go together modern rigs have computers, better tires, power assisted steering and steer by wire systems that help reduce torque steer. Great example of technology is the new focus St- this is a real deal sporty car that is fwd. (go ford).

    Ford ShO 91, loved that car.
  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    edited April 2013
    While I agree fwd and sport do not always go together modern rigs have computers, better tires, power assisted steering and steer by wire systems that help reduce torque steer.

    VW has an excellent sport front driver, GTI. BMW's front driver is renown for its handling.

    Decades ago in road rally races in Europe, some of the best performing vehicles were front drivers such as Saab and Mini Cooper.
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 3,029
    'BMW's front driver is renown for its handling. '
    Huh?
    What did I miss here?
    - Ray
    Driving a RWD BMW...
    2016 BMW 340i
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 133,854
    MINI Cooper....

    Did you get a good deal? Be sure to come back and share!

    Edmunds Moderator

  • sweendogysweendogy Left lanePosts: 1,307
    That's why I said "don't always go together" - plus mentioned the ford st.
  • pv2pv2 Posts: 37
    At the limit, RWD trumps FWD, but having had 2 BMW 3 series coupes with sport pkg., I'm now driving a 2007 Acura TL Type S and have enjoyed its handling since new.
  • sweendogysweendogy Left lanePosts: 1,307
    Acura has good computers to counter act the effects of TS. :D Loved the TL-s - dark rims and the older square body good looking rig. 6 speed manual- room for 5, 40k sleeper
  • flightnurseflightnurse Valley of HellPosts: 2,178
    I used to own a 225 hp '91 Taurus SHO and I can tell you it was close to the limit of

    It is all about chassis setup and 22 yrs ago, that was the limit, however, things have changed today.
  • flightnurseflightnurse Valley of HellPosts: 2,178
    I don't think Mini is considered a BMW, that is like saying that a Rolls Royce is a BMW too.
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 20,724
    Here's the thing, I have owned FWDs that were enjoyable to corner at the limit because they were relatively light (not so much weight to transfer) but once you start getting much larger than a Golf or Mazda3 you're going to get a lot of weight resisting any transfer of direction. I'd say a Focus is right on the limit but probably enjoyable to corner much of the time but a Fusion or Accord, not so much.

    That's my theory and I'm sticking to it.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,863
    I don't think Mini is considered a BMW, that is like saying that a Rolls Royce is a BMW too.

    Both are engineering by BMW and use components shared with BMW. The Rolls Royce Ghost uses the F01 as it's platform. The new Wraith is based on the Ghost so it to uses the same platform. The next Mini platform is to be shared by the 1 series so essentially it too will be similar to the BMW.
  • sweendogysweendogy Left lanePosts: 1,307
    Weight of the gti is 3000-3200 lbs depending on doors or options, focus st is 3250.
  • leoblueleoblue Posts: 19
    Hello everyone, I'm new to this forum. I'm sorry in advance if my question has been discussed before (haven't been able to go through 15000 previous posts yet, but I will).

    And also sorry in advance to BMW 3series fans because what I'll write may sound like I'm trashing BMW. But in fact, on the opposite, I'm looking for your help to make the case that BMW 3 is still the right car for me.

    That's all for the opening, here's my story:
    I'm having an Acura TL2004 at 125K miles. I love this car, inside out. But recently, it's been having so many problems that I decided it's time for a new car. Actually, my TL has been having quite a few problems since the warranty expired but I kept fixing it hoping that problem would be last but it's not the case...

    Anyway, since I'm looking for a new car, BMW 3 series is on top of my list thanks to all what I read about how great it is... a benchmark for the performance segment....

    So I test drove a BMW 328i xdrive and a 328i 2013 model last week, and here's my first reaction:
    - Interior: far worse than my TL, materials look cheap and feel cheap. The seat leatherette looks like it's not fully stretched leaving "waves" here and there (hope you understand this, English is not my native language). The steering wheel stitches feel rough on the hands. For me, the best phrase to describe the cabin is "made in China" kind of stuff (just the feeling, not fact)
    - Performance: trying to overcome the disappointment with the interior, I was hoping that the German approach was no nonsense and put all the money into the driving experience. However, I felt only marginally better driving dynamic and that's only achieved with Sport mode because when I started with Eco mode, I could hardly tell the improvement vs. my TL. You may say that I'm not that sophisticated a driver to really feel the difference. But the fact is that when I drove a Toyota Camry and a Nissan Maxima just a few weeks ago (rental cars), I clearly felt the difference with the Camry and Maxima feeling like it's "floating" on the road vs. my TL's my firmer, controlled and composed dynamic. Driving 80mph in the Camry and Maxima I didn't feel as secured as in my TL. I was hoping for that "leap" from the TL to the BMW 3 but it was not the case.

    Long story, hope I didn't bother you too much. Here are my questions:
    - Have someone owned both Acura TL (04-08 model) and BMW 3 series? What's your opinion about the 2 cars?
    - Could my limited excitement be due to the fact that the test drive was to short to really feel the difference (I was on each car (328i and 328i xdrive) for about 20 mins)? Or could it be because the TL is really good and all that driving performance superiority of BMW 3 was compared to the mainstream car like Camry so I didn't feel that much of a jump?

    I still really want BMW 328 to be my next car and I hope you could help me to really understand the difference.

    Thank you very much.
  • carnaughtcarnaught Desert SWPosts: 2,800
    edited April 2013
    I had an '04 TL and then an '06 and '09 325i and 328i, respectively, among many other cars. The TL drove admirably well, but not exceptionally. It felt light and much less planted and confidence-inspiring compared with the two 3-series BMW's. The Acura developed numerous squeaks and rattles and the leather seats wrinkled and showed wear. The TL was reliable but with a much more "hollow" feel compared to the firm and steady and rock-solid feel of the BMW's. The interiors of the BMW's, although not the best in the business, wore well and were ergonomic (I happened to like the iDrives I had in each.). While I could ride with others in the BMW for prolonged time without fatigue, for example, the passenger seat in the Acura felt compressed like sitting in a hole or on a commode.

    Leoblue, these are just a few observations of mine on the differences of the two cars; keep in mind that this is a very subjective thing. You have to buy with a car that appeals to you. There are many fine car choices you have and you should not go solely on other's opinions but mainly the opinion that matters the most, your own.
  • dino001dino001 Tampa, FLPosts: 5,534
    edited April 2013
    One thing is BMW has many options and lines. I would not even touch leatherette interior. The wood or sport line inlays look so much better than standard silver, it's not even funny. Sport and M lines have much better seats. I understand there is also different suspension on M line, not sure about sports. If you option it right, not just get some base level from the dealer's lot, the car will be different. The only true downside is the price. To get "right" BMW, not just the badge, you got to pay more than starting price. Worse, many dealers don't even keep good cars, not to spook buyers with 50k+ stickers. I looked my dealer's and it seems majority are basic, one two options, not even those designer lines, which trully add nice touches, for a price of course. Bottom line, if you aren't ready to pay up, you better go with Acura. The price is simply better, especially if you want to stay well below 50 grand.

    2018 430i Gran Coupe

  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    To get "right" BMW, not just the badge, you got to pay more than starting price. Worse, many dealers don't even keep good cars, not to spook buyers with 50k+ stickers.

    R&T said this about the 3 series: "The 3-series, which used to make so much more sense than the 1, is now a perfectly nice car that barely registers on the fun-to-drive scale." Barely registers according to them. They also said that it focuses more on electronics than on feedback.

    So, all of this probably does not matter to many people who mainly buy these cars to "show off". To say that they have arrived. To say that they are sophisticated.
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