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Acura TSX vs. BMW 328i

bora1bora1 Posts: 42
edited March 2014 in Acura
Hello all,

Can someone please justify how the Acura TSX is a better option to purchase than a BMW 325i or vice versa. Thx


  • johnny420johnny420 Posts: 473
    The TSX comes with much more in the way of options standard, leather, Bluetooth, HID headlamps, a $2000 option for an excellent navigation system, heated seats, sweet-shifting 6 speed gearbox, etc.

    The BMW similarly equipped would cost much more. Pros for the BMW would include rear wheel drive, excellent driving dynamics, the BMW nameplate, more powerful motor than the TSX, 4 years of no cost maintenance (which some would argue you'll need ;)), and, really, a great history of producing outstanding drivers cars. If the prestige of owning a Bimmer is important to you, there's that too.

    The TSX also has excellent driving dynamics, especially in the MT form, great handling, attractive, high quality interior, reliability and just a generally high fun-to-drive quotient. The car is very well-balanced, but so is the BMW 325i.

    You really have to decide what's important to you in a vehicle. The TSX is hard to beat at its price point, and continues to be a great value in todays marketplace.

  • bora1bora1 Posts: 42
    Thx for your honest response Johnny. The 2006 BMW 325i comes with standard bi-xenon HID headlamps, heated seats, fog lamps, etc. The only thing that doesn't "jazz me" are the leatherette seats.

    I recall reading somewhere in another forum that the outer surface of the seats on a TSX are vinyl. Just the the perforated portion is leather. Is this true
  • johnny420johnny420 Posts: 473
    Yes, it's true. Just the part you sit on is leather. I wasn't aware of the changes to the '06 325i.

    I would try test driving both, then see where you're at. You may find one car appeals to you way more than the other, making your choice easier.

    FWIW, I've always coveted BMW's, I just haven't been able to justify the high cost of a 330i yet, but, hey, I'm only 45. :D

    That and I've been very happy with the TSX for the last 2.5 years. Very satisfying car to own and drive.

    I say it's a testament to Acura that we even discuss the 325i and TSX together. That was Acura'a goal from the beginning, create a car to compete with the 325 (previous gen) at a more affordable price point and with more options standard. I think they succeeded in spades, but BMW has since upped the ante with the E90.

    Really, you can't go wrong with either car.
  • to me its just hard to justify that much money for a car that is known to not be reliable. I mean you could get a TL for the price of 325. It hard to beat the TSX's value especially when so many things come standard on it.
  • eegradeegrad Posts: 7
    My impression has always been that the TSX is a little bit more spacious than the BMW. You may want to consider that if you have kids or are planning on taking passengers often. I think that the inside of the car is also much nicer than the BMW (dash in particular). Outside I would say I like both about the same.

    Overall I’m very happy with my TSX. I have had absolutely no issues with it in two years. If the TSX came with RWD and a V6 engine for this price we probably wouldn’t be having this conversation. I would also advice you to drive them both and figure out if the V6, RWD and “Prestige” are worth the difference in cash to you.

    If you are planning on keeping the car for a long time I would also factor in reliability. I believe that the TSX will be better in that respect. Don’t expect “free” oil changes every 3K miles from BMW. They probably will do the minimum the need to maintain the car working past the warranty period.
  • johnny420johnny420 Posts: 473
    Just a couple of points. The 325i comes equipped with an inline 6, not a V6, and I think you're right about the interior space. The Bimmer has the drive train tunnel, which eats space. Neither is overly spacious, but both are functional sedans.

    I do agree that the TSX interior is nicer. The Bimmers isn't bad, it's just more spartan and not as well thought out(drink holder on the passenger side?!). I do like the BMW steering wheel better.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Bimmer designers don't drink and drive ... ;)
  • johnny420johnny420 Posts: 473
    LOL! Yes, in Germany a car is something to be driven, not a mobile office/dining room. :D That cupholder placement is pure afterthought.
  • biker4biker4 Posts: 746
    The days of the 325 are numbered - the 328 will be out very soon. Along with the new number comes a much higher price. The price difference between the entry level 3 series and TSX will widen more in 07.

    In most cars the issue of the leather is the same - only the actual seating area is real leather. Most people are hard pressed to tell the diff between BMW leather and leatherette - I assume this is due to the leather they use.
  • johnny420johnny420 Posts: 473
    With the 328 coming out, it may be an even better time to pick up a 325, pricewise.

    FWIW, I didn't care for the leatherette at all during my test drive. Maybe some people can't tell, but I could.

    As far as price gap goes, I wonder if Acura will up the ante when the '08 TSX comes out, as in up the price in an attempt to go more "upscale." May close that gap right up again.
  • biker4biker4 Posts: 746
    No doubt Acura will try to up the price on the new 08 TSX (it will probably sticker over 30K) - but it has yet to prove it is able to demand the higher asking priocesk. The RDX may be a good test case - I think Acura reached a bit with the pricing (about 2-3K too high). As the RL has shown, Acura may have the right product (the RL is a good car) but the market will only go so far in terms of price - the RL sells at 42-44K but not at 50K.
  • bora1bora1 Posts: 42
    The TSX does appear bigger, but they are relatively the same size. However, I do agree with you that the dash of a TSX is much nicer.

    In terms of reliability, the 3 series has outlived the TSX in terms of being in the market longer, and they keep on selling, so they must be doing something right. The bimmers also maintain their resale value very well.

    In terms of maintenance, how sure are you that Acura does not provide you with the minimum maintenance to maintain the vehicle past the warranty period as well? How often do you take you Acura in for the scheduled maintenance? I did some research on the 3 series vs. Acura TL/TSX, and the cost of maintaining a bimmer is lower than that of any Acura. The scheduled maintenance on a 3 Series is performed every 20,000 to 25,000 kms. In terms of maintenance costs, it is much cheaper to maintain a Bimmer than it is to maintain most of the imports and some domestic vehicles.

    In terms of detail, the Bimmer's interior has a lot more detail than the TSX. I still don't understand why Honda has not made it mandatory to illuminate the Hazards switch when the lights are on :confuse:

    Both vehicles are really nice, but it seems that there are more perks to a Bimmer than a TSX.
  • Where exactly did you get you data from in regards to research and can you specify the "perks" of owning a bimmer over an acura? I find it hard to believe that reliability of a bimmer outshines the acura. This is comming from a bimmer fan whose only dislike for the company is the fact that bimmer over prices their cars.
  • mrgold35mrgold35 Posts: 73
    I’ve owned 5 Honda’s and 1 Acura in the last 15 years with combined mileage of a little less than 450,000 miles. The only maintenance issues I’ve had were electric cooling fan and A/C compressor failure. Other than the regular schedule maintenance and replacing wear/tear items (tires, brakes, filters, etc...), Honda’s have been very reliable for me and have saved me plenty of time and money by staying away from the tow trucks and repair shops. I’m willing to bet there are a lot more Honda/Acura owners who spend less time at the shop compared to BMW owners (excluding the ISUZU/Honda vehicle owners of course).

    Keep in mind, there is no such thing as FREE MAINTENANCE. We all pay for the 4yr/48k warranty in the price of the car. Reliability is a concern to me because I plan on keeping the TSX well pass the warranty period (120,000-150,000 mile mark). If you only plan on keeping the BMW until the warranty expires and replacing the vehicle, this may be the way to go. I don’t want a car payment for the rest of my life. I prefer to pay off the car and drive trouble/payment free for 4-5 years after that. I couldn't do that in a BMW.
  • potemkinpotemkin Posts: 196
    "I prefer to pay off the car and drive trouble/payment free for 4-5 years after that. I couldn't do that in a BMW."

    You can't?

    I did.

    Paid it off in 3, actually. Drove it daily for another 7. My '95 ti was mostly trouble free for the first 10 years -- after about 110k miles it did need some work replacing wear-and-tear items, but nothing that would leave me stranded. Of course, my anecdotal evidence is not proof of reliability (one way or another), or as they say on the net: YMMV.
  • bora1bora1 Posts: 42
    My data on maintenance was obtained from Acura and BMW. I visited an Acura dealer and a BMW dealer and got the maintenance schedules and price quotations from them. In terms of perks, all you have to do is look at Bimmer engineering compared to Acura engineering. The Germans pay closer attention to detail than the Japanese do (compare the 2 models physically (visit the dealerships) and you'll see for yourself). I have nothing against Japanese cars (they are really good cars as well, but I think the Bimmer has hit a mark that Honda hasn't hit yet). have owned both German and Japanese cars, and I must admit, the German cars were a better driving experience.
  • bora1bora1 Posts: 42
    My '95 ti was mostly trouble free for the first 10 years

    What's a ti?
  • Not saying I know for sure that you're wrong about:

    "I did some research on the 3 series vs. Acura TL/TSX, and the cost of maintaining a bimmer is lower than that of any Acura."

    But Edmunds True Cost to Own estimates:

    Repair/Maintenance cost on a 325i at $5122.
    Repair/Maintenance cost on a TSX at $4326.

    That is over a 5 year period. If BMW didn't have the maintenance program that they do, the difference would be significantly more.

    Just thought I'd point that out. And not to beat the value horse to death, but I didn't even throw in the OTHER true cost to own factors. The largest of which being the purchase price.
  • Well if you got those stats from Acura and BMW, well I guess I can't contest that. But as the other gentleman pointed out according to edmunds the stats are a little different.
  • bora1bora1 Posts: 42

    I'm assuming you're a TSX owner right? How often (or after how many miles or KMs) do you take your car in for the regular maintenance?
  • That's exactly why I'm not disputing that you could easily be right about the comparison. I've only had my TSX a month and haven't even been in for my first oil change.

    There's a common "recommended" maintenance schedule of course, but I planned on following the maintenance minder that's built in to the trip computer for most things. Beyond that I planned on digging in to what may be needed in the future after I clocked a few more miles.
  • dannyledannyle Posts: 43
    I was not aware that the 2006 325I with standard bi-xenon HID headlamps and heated seats. I though this was always an option. Am I wrong ? :confuse:
  • potemkinpotemkin Posts: 196
    What's a ti?

    Sorry, I wasn't real clear their...

    In this instance, a "ti" is a 1995 BMW 318ti. A hatchback that was introduced (to the US) in 1995 and discontinued in 1999.
  • bora1bora1 Posts: 42
    Based on the research I carried out, the recommended service frequency of the TSX is 8,000kms (5000mi) or until the "Maintenance Required" dash indicator lights up. The BMW 3 Series' recommended service frequency is every 20,000 to 25,000kms (12,000mi to 15,000mi) or until the "Maintenance Required" dash indicator lights up.

    The first 4 years of maintenance are performed by BMW at no cost. All wear and tear parts are replaced by BMW at no cost within the first 4 years i.e. disc brakes, wipers, etc. The BMW dealer that i consulted also picks up your car from you house (when servicing is due) and leaves you with a courtesy car. When the servicing is completed, the dealer drops your car back to your house. Now that is quality service.
  • bora1bora1 Posts: 42
    2006 325i comes with standard Bi-Xenon HID headlamps and heated seats. Nit sure about the US, but these are standard in Canada.
  • bruceomegabruceomega Posts: 250
    Can anyone comment on how the performance of the TSX and 325 compare when they are both equipped with an automatic transmission?
  • mrgold35mrgold35 Posts: 73
    The BMW has a better weight distribution and the max torque is available at around 2750 RPMs instead at 4500 RPM with the TSX. Both cars have similar overall weight. The extra low end torque of the I-6 will make the BMW accelerate harder and give you better 0-60 times, somewhere between a 5AT/6MT TSX. BMW cannot provide the same features as the Acura for the same price.

    The Honda/Acura K24 I-4 iVtec engine is probably one of the best engines in the world along with the K20. You will get better gas mileage with the Acura 5AT and a wider RPM range to have fun with. The Acura TSX can live between 6-7,000 RPMs without missing a beat. Both cars would give each a run for the money on a road course depending on the driver.

    Features, reliability, and gas mileage put the TSX on top for me.
  • biker4biker4 Posts: 746
    If you want any performance commnets on the TSX then only a manual tranny makes sense.
  • I agree that you will get better performance in the TSX with a manual rather than an automatic.

    I was trying to ask a slightly different question. If its the case that the car will have an automatic, and not a manual, then how does the automatic TSX compare to the automatic 325?

    My guess is the automatic is a bigger performance hinderance to the TSX than to the 325 since the TSX has a smaller engine.

  • I think that when the 2 series (or if) comes out that will be a better comparison to a TSX. Nothing wrong with it but remember you are buying a japanese honda accord. Maybe try out the US accord if that appeals to ya. Very reliable.
This discussion has been closed.