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Luxury Performance Sedans



  • janssenjanssen Posts: 74
    Sorry to say I have no resolution. It is one of those intermittent problems, and the dealer says it is normal.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    If you really want ultimate, check out the latest Car and Driver. They have a high-end sports car comparo. I think the Porsche 911 was the lowest priced vehicle at around 140k and it came in at 4th place. The Lamborghini and the Maserati were battling it out for 1st place. So if you have an extra 200k...
    One can always dream!
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    I love that ... imagine forcing yourself to choose the Ultimate Driving Machine in a list created by people you don't know, limited to six vehicle so the host site can squeeze advertising links to each manufacturer at the top of a page.

    The folks at Porsche might want to chat with any other German car company and say, ummm.... "Ulitmate Driving Machine", er uh, "show me".

    If someone "forces" himself to make a buying decision based on this thread he has rocks in his head. I don't believe anyone does this. It's simply a point of reference.

    It's a foregone conclusion that "Ultimate Driving Machine" refers to cars of the four-seat variety. And it has been the truth about BMWs in the US for the past 30 years. Actually BMW didn't invent it. They hitchhiked onto what people were saying about the 2002 in the 70s.

    If you want to think so literally, anyone can be nailed on virtually anything.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    The euphoria usually ends with that first ding! A clear bra for the whole car is what I need right now.

    The posted speed limit down here is 70 on the interstate. But If you do 80 in the right lane, you will usually have a flat-bed trucker admiring your rear bumper.

    No. I don't care about the resale value. The residual is $34320. I will just move on up to whatever else is out there after test-driving the next wave of nice vehicles.(I start this process a year before the end of the lease. A lot of fun!)

    My wife knows nothing about cars. After having my 325i for over 2 years, she still couldn't pick it
    out of a parking lot! She knows that the sport seat was uncomfortable. She loves the new car with the comfort seats.

    You know you are in good shape when the owners manual indicates for the first 1200 miles, do not exceed a driving speed of 100 mph and an engine speed of 4500 rpm! Sounds like they copied this right out of the German manual. They say 300 miles for the brakes, 200 miles for the tires and of course, 1200 miles for the engine.

    With these cars, you can tell when the break-in period is over when you wake up one morning and all of a sudden the tires grip like you are riding on rails. Happened this way with both of my 325i's. Probably after 200-300 miles. I only have 140 miles(2 miles on delivery) driven with 19.7mpg.

    I got the 545i because BMW was running a "fire-sale" lease on it to make room for the new 550. My interest rate on this lease is only 2.4% I figure I am saving around $3000 off a typical BMW lease for this vehicle. Besides, it's a jungle out there on the interstate. All these huge SUV's and flat-bed truckers have plenty of horsepower. I gotta keep up!
  • janssenjanssen Posts: 74
    You spend a lot of time deciding. I don't think I could wait a year! How do you start? Reading the mags? Or do you just kind of wander into the dealerships as you pass by and see something new?

    My GF has learned a lot recently. She gets to drive my beemer until i sell it, and is she happy! So she BETTER learn! ;)

    I had really never heard this before, about a cars'suspension changing after the break-in. Why do you think that happens? Is this something the high-end manufacturers know about, and talk about?

    Good lease rate. Especially given the high BMW residual. People who don't understand leases may not understand how a car like a beemer can be pretty cheap on lease (comparatively, of course), since you only pay for depreciation and finance charges. Get a good finance rate like you did, and the car is pretty darned affordable, for its class.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    I keep up with these boards and many of the other auto sites so I keep in touch with what's out there. Constantly reading online reviews of the professionals and consumers. MSN Autos and Yahoo Autos for example.

    About a year before lease-end, I subscribe to Road & Track and Car And Driver. Love their comparos.

    Around 8 months before, I have a list of 2-5 cars and begin test-driving them. I may drive a car 3-4 times over that 8 month period to help me decide. During this time I monitor leasing deals and prices paid, buying experiences on the Edmunds threads of the cars that I am interested in.

    It's not the suspension, but the tires. The tires can feel "slippery" at first but after 200-300 miles you can feel the improvement in grip.

    Like I said, BMW's are a great leasing car. But if I have a lot of headaches(my dealer is 40 miles away) due to poor quality control, I am not adverse to going with Lexus, Infiniti or Acura.
    2 1/2 days and no headaches. Cautiously optimistic!
  • Similar to Hpowders, I picked up an 05 545 on a fire sale. Was really excited to have some fun breaking it in this summer. Just a little over 2 months in, AC goes out (which means driving is unbearable here in SoCal). It takes me 3 wks to get a service appt, they promise 2 days turnaround and at this time, there is no ETA after 5 days. The funny thing is I call them for an update yesterday and I get a receptionist telling me "It's not ready, I don't know when it will be ready and your Client Advisor isn't here!" Yet they pressure you to give high marks on the survey! Funny :cry:

    Hope this isn't an indication of things to come. Its ironic, I picked up the e60 coming out of a trouble free 99' 540 because I was concerned about maintenance costs going forward. Maybe I should have stuck w/ the E39!
  • docnukemdocnukem Posts: 485
    Do you mean to say they eventually go away on their own? Thank heavens! I am so tired of walking that extra 1/2 mile from the parking lot. Happy to say, though, that I am dingless with 4.5 months of ownership.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    When was your 545i built?
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    What's really funny is I had to return my 325i last Monday. My car was "dingless" as I too practiced the park as far away as possible maneuver. The day before returning the vehicle I was parked closer to the supermarket than I normally would, and sure enough, someone put a ding on the rear passenger door. Luckily, it was less than 2 inches across and I didn't have to pay for its repair. Also, since I gave the car back the next day, I didn't have to keep looking at that spot torturing myself!
    I guess the letter with the perpetrator's phone # and apology must have blown away from my windshield wiper! :)
  • My 1997 Audi A8 (one of the first in the US, November 1996) had an all wheel alignment at about 1,000 miles.

    The reason? The suspension (new springs, etc.) can settle -- perhaps this was a cautionary procedure on Audis part for a new model that they wanted the customers to have premium experiences with.

    Same deal on my 2003 allroad (but this was because the air suspension was adjusted, at my request -12mm front and rear) -- all wheel alignment required to make this perfect!

    I have always felt that brand new cars do feel differnt after a couple hundred miles, and I'll grant the tires are probably the biggest contributor to this. But I would assume the flex characteristics of a spring might be different after some real world driving, but I could be wrong.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Whats much worse than than parking lot problems is when your in a situation where there's nothing you can do, you just have to watch it happen. Several years ago when I was driving my old '98 XK8, I was stopped, naturally, at a stop sign. There was a gray Passat in front of me, and the driver decided she was too far into the cross street, so I see the reverse lights come on. I cant back up because there's a car behind me as well. I flashed my highbeams and honked to no avail. I got to watch as she put a $4000 dent in the front of my Jaguar. The body shop offered me a Chevy Monte Carlo loaner, but somehow I managed to turn that down.
  • rich545rich545 Posts: 386
    That's wild. I have an '04 545 and the only time it's been to the dealer is for scheduled maintenance and a couple of recalls which I handles while adding other "stuff" to it (like SAT radio). Otherwise it's been trouble free (knock on wood).
  • hihomikehihomike Posts: 111
    I got a kick out of your "dingless" post, hpowders.

    Since I got my new 06 530i, I've been parking further and further away from my final destination at a shopping mall to "protect" my child from those brutes out there that put dings in her side. But I found out rather quickly that no matter how far away I park my child from those "schoolyard bullies," when I return, a gang has surrounded my child, almost "hovering" around her waiting for the opportunity to "ding" her. No dings yet, but I'm also running out of safe parking areas to protect her.

    I hope I'm lucky enough to keep my child's sides and behind like a newborn's "tush" until the day I decide to replace her. Fat chance of that happening, huh?
  • marleybarrmarleybarr Posts: 334
    Would you say starting out in 4th on my non "S" line tiptronic A6 2.7T would be similar to shifting into "S" mode on the more current models? From a standing stop, accelerating in 4th and then shifting into "D" seems to give the car more "jump" than even using the tip side to row through the gears.
  • I'll have to ck the build date.....when I finally get the car back! :cry: At least I'm getting to do an extended test drive of an e46 330xi.

    Parking lot jitters are funny. I park at the top floor of the structure to get my "ding free" spot. My wife "dreads" driving the Bimmer because I always "hound" her about where she parks. Its been over 2 dings yet!
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    Ouch! Nothing can be worse than knowing an accident is coming and you are powerless to get out of the way! A claustrophobic nightmare!
  • I really don't know.

    I have had 5 Audis with Automatic transmissions and only one of them had "S" mode and 6 speeds -- my current one.

    On my A6 4.2's, I did NOT have "S" mode. And, on those cars tip mode had no control over first gear, so it was useless as far as I was concerned.

    I used to simply turn the key on, floor the accelerator for about 5 seconds, turn the key off and then start the car normally.

    The intended effect was to erase the "lag" from the transmission. I would still get it from time to time (especially on rolling stops which would often be in second or third gear and then when I wanted to pull away, I had to punch the pedal, which first cause a delay and then a rush of energy as the thing downshifted into first gear and the full 295 ft pounds of torque was unleashed all at once.)

    Coffee spillin' time (if I had allowed coffee in my car, that is.)

    If you don't have an "S" mode you proably have the limp setting tip, which means it still shifts out of first gear immediately upon departure unless you are flooring the car.

    What a dumb dumb transmission for what is supposed to be a smart smart one!


    Dear Audi we want a stick shift or at the very least DSG! :blush:
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    You know, now that I have this big bad 545i, I am miserable because I'm afraid to take it out of the garage and park it in a public parking lot.
    I have never caused anybody else to have a ding in a parking lot. Why can't others be more considerate? I'm never there to see it either. It's always "ding and run." Never an apologetic letter with an offer to pay for the damage.
  • My last door ding, so to speak was nearly a $1,000 fix.

    My wife got a slight bump in her TT's front fender -- nearly $3,000.

    People may be inconsiderate but they're also aware of the costs of their mistakes and "frankly my dear, they just don't give a damn."

    Too, parking spaces are sooooo tight, you cannot expect us fat Americans to be able to open our car doors and get out can you? Nope, so we just open them until they bang into something.

    If you actually found someone doing this, it would probably be a person without insurance and NVMS (no visible means of support) anyway.

    Someone I know just got a new car -- I'll leave it at that -- this person has trashed the new car within 2 months. It looks like it was hit by a tornado, inside and out.

    My gut tells me this person wouldn't think it was a big deal to ding someone, not because he/she is evil or something, just doesn't care about material stuff (yours or theirs.) Dings are a part of life is what I bet this person believes -- both giving and getting.

    I really don't know of course, but the behavior leads me to this conclusion. I do not plan to confront them since I have never been a victim of any of the behavior I am presuming they consider routine.
  • docnukemdocnukem Posts: 485
    I guess that would be "Ding Theory".
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    I might as well just walk to the supermarket since I park so far away from it, what's another few blocks?

    I've devised a plan. I get up really early in the morning, go to the supermarket parking lot and park far away like always. I figure most dingbats hit the stores at 10am or later. Weekends are totally out since last Sunday was when my last car got its ding.

    One probably needs 2 vehicles. One old jalopy just for shopping and a nice LPS for pleasure driving.

    Auto anxiety is tough. Too bad people can't be nicer to each other.

    Suffered my first case of 545 envy today. Riding along on a street, car 10 feet in front of me. 20mph. I'm keeping pace right behind him. Left lane. Suddenly, jalopy behind me moves into the right lane, then sharply pulls in front of me like I'm moving too slowly.
    You have this kind of car, ya gotta expect this kind of animalistic behavior, I guess.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    Let's toast to a ding-free summer. Down the hatch!
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    Got my CR issue today. As usual, the last person in America to receive it.

    Wow! Now I'm sorry I didn't spend more time with the Infiniti M! An absolute rave. Not only is the M35 CR's favorite sedan, but it is now their highest scoring sedan even among premium luxury sedans. That means even higher than the Lexus LS430.
    The Infiniti M's road test score is almost beyond an excellent rating if you look at page 51.

    In 2 years and 4 months when I begin my next round of test drives, I will be spending a lot of respectful time with the Infiniti M. Its only flaw seems to be in the mpg department-a disappointing 12 mpg in city driving from a V6.
  • marleybarrmarleybarr Posts: 334
    Yes, exactly! First automatically shifts into second at about 4 mph. There was a post on the Audiworld website where a racer type actually programmed out that automatic shift from first to second at 3~4 mph so that net effect was that first wouldn't shift "up" until 4500 rpm + at (whatever speed) revving in first gear on the "D" side and wouldn't shift automatically at all on the tip side just like gears 2,3, and 4 operate through the stock setup.
  • There is a tip chip that will do this too.

    I don't think I'd buy it unless it was under $100.
  • janssenjanssen Posts: 74
    You guys are all scarin' me!

    The dings! The cutoffs! The blind backups! Oh, the humanity!

    I will join the toast for all you fellow posters with new cars. May the shine be with you, at least for this summer.

    As to the M, I am getting worse mileage than with my BMW 6 (duh!), about fifteen combined, a bit more city than hwy. I can keep you updated, not that it would stop any of us from buying...

    The other day I had my first ever $50 fill up! Shocking. Thanks to our foreign policy, I suppose. But still shocking.

    I cancelled my CR subscription. Too bad, I couldn't get the emotional boost that all owners get from someone else liking their car (just ask Karl). I will have to go to the library, if I can afford the gas!

    Here's to no dings!
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    Yeah. Well compared to the Hindenburg, what's a few dings?
    You keep toasting and I will keep drinking.
    May all our cars be satisfying and may we all appreciate how lucky we are to be able to afford them!
  • I to just received the latest CR as well and could not wait to read the comparison since everybody else on this board has already commented on it. The M35 is indeed impressive, I just wish I could get past the interior layout! I spend too much time inside my car sitting in city traffic and would go nuts looking at the dash. (But I am sure I would be enjoying the drive of the M35 if I could find an open road more often.)

    Regarding the Audi, I found it funny that they make a remark about "the cabin access is very good, but the doors are heavy".

    You would think that they would be thrilled with the "thunk" of a solid door. Thank goodness it got the double thumbs up from the recent NHTSA side impact ratings report. As the only car in this category to get the very best rating for the different types of side impacts, CR must think that those types of ratings can come from a lighter door than can defy some laws of physics upon impact. And knowing CR, they will take an automaker down in a nanosecond if they slip to anything on the downside of an acceptable rating.

    I look at it as a workout for my arms every time I find an excuse to go to the store. The workout for my legs comes from the walk to avoid dings :P
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I really dont understand why Infiniti doesnt offer all of the interior options for US Ms that Nissan does in Japan in the Fuga. The Fuga has a third trim option, a black laquer that in my opinion at least, looks much better than either the aluminum or wood finish.

    Fuga 350GT with black trim
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