Which is the better car deal?

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Post Reply
bb
Posts: 274
Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:04 pm

Which is the better car deal?

Post by bb » Thu Sep 12, 2013 8:44 pm

2011 BMW 328xi, 9k miles, 17/25 mpg, premium unleaded, owned 6 months,
3.5 years base warranty + 2 years certifiedpreowned warranty,
$30K (value package, premium package, xenon headlights)

2014 Camry XLE, 25/35 mpg, regular unleaded, 4 cylinder, new, 3 year warranty, $24K

For the sake of the discussion assume that there is nothing wrong with BMW - which I don't
believe there is. Since no AWD for 2012 dealer ordered enough 2011's to last through 2012 -
car didn't sell until spring of this year (2013) - owner came from SUV and decided they
did not end up liking car and went back to SUV.

I drive 8k miles per year so fuel efficiency delta is not a huge factor.

Brian

User avatar
LadyGeek
Site Admin
Posts: 41680
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 5:34 pm
Location: Philadelphia
Contact:

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by LadyGeek » Thu Sep 12, 2013 8:47 pm

This thread is now in the Personal Consumer Issues forum (car comparison).
To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

User avatar
interplanetjanet
Posts: 2226
Joined: Mon Jan 24, 2011 4:52 pm
Location: the wilds of central California

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by interplanetjanet » Thu Sep 12, 2013 8:49 pm

An elephant for a dime is only a good deal if you need an elephant and have a dime.

Either you want to drive the BMW over the Camry or you don't. If you do, only you can put a price on what sort of a premium it is worth to you. I wouldn't be surprised to see a number of "you're crazy for not trying to be as frugal as possible with reliable transportation" posts on this thread, but they've become rather predictable.

Work out what is a better deal *for you*. And, to heck with what anyone else thinks. :)

User avatar
Ged
Posts: 3311
Joined: Mon May 13, 2013 1:48 pm
Location: Roke

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Ged » Thu Sep 12, 2013 8:55 pm

How many people do you need to carry? Do you go on long trips? The back of a 328 isn't exactly spacious. I only drive about 5000 mi a year now but half of that is long trips.

How long do you want to keep the car? BMWs get expensive to maintain once they are out of warranty.

topos
Posts: 187
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2009 9:47 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by topos » Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:03 pm

The cars are so different that "which one is the better deal" does not look like a "valid" question to me.

User avatar
bottlecap
Posts: 5070
Joined: Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:21 pm
Location: Tennessee

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by bottlecap » Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:12 pm

The Camry is the better deal financially, but who knows, the BMW might do wonders for your self-esteem!

JT

bb
Posts: 274
Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:04 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by bb » Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:18 pm

Well - I only need to carry 2 people. The camry is a 4 cylinder which I am not in love
with. To upgrade to the 6 cylinder in the camry you are probably at $30k.
So from a feature standpoint the BMW seems like more car for the money.

I generally keep cars until they die but don't really plan my auto future out
muliple years. Change cars when there is a need to.

Guess the issue I am having is $6K more for a car that has more features,
better handling, better driving feel, leather seats, etc almost seems like more car for
the money. If the camry were $20K, I would perceive it differently but I want a sunroof.

The longer warranty seems to mitigate my concern about a car that is more
expensive to maintain - if car turns out to be problematic I would trade before
warranty is up. If not might potentially hang on to it.

Brian

bb
Posts: 274
Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:04 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by bb » Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:21 pm

Speaking financially - say I keep both cars 10 years. I generally make the assumption that
a car is worthless after 10 years (road salt = rust).

So just straight cost of the car per year camry is $2.4K/yr and the BMW is $3K/yr -
does not seem like a big difference.

User avatar
Watty
Posts: 11828
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2007 3:55 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Watty » Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:28 pm

It would be good to have the BMW inspected for flood damage, there have been a lot of flood damaged cars over the last few years and the story behind it sounds atypical to say the least.

In addition to the higher maintenance the BMW may also have higher insurance costs.

As a strictly financial decision I don't see how the BMW could be a better choice.

User avatar
mike143
Posts: 1332
Joined: Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:55 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by mike143 » Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:34 pm

Acura TL
Nothing is free, someone pays...You can't spend your way to financial freedom.

bb
Posts: 274
Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:04 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by bb » Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:38 pm

I saw the car in the dealers show room this spring before it sold - it is not a flood car -
bought and traded back to the same dealer (we did not have a flood).

Guess my bias is the BMW is a better car - in terms of features and driving characteristics.

But since I also don't care to throw my money away the real question is how much more
per year is the BMW going to cost to own.

I don't really have a guess as to what the BMW would cost if traded at various years nor
do I have a good feel for if I kept the BMW for 10 years how much extra would it cost
to maintain for years 5.5->10 compared to the Camry for years 4-10.

Brian

User avatar
bottlecap
Posts: 5070
Joined: Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:21 pm
Location: Tennessee

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by bottlecap » Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:45 pm

If you want the BMW, get it. But it will cost far more money than the Camry in the end. These are pretty divergent styles. Why just these two?

JT

bb
Posts: 274
Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:04 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by bb » Thu Sep 12, 2013 10:12 pm

Guess my original post just should have asked for any guesses as to how much more the BMW
would cost over the Camry for 10 years of ownership of both. For the first 5 years
the BMW is covered and I would not expect any significant repairs for the Camry.
The 5 years after that what would be a reasonable estimate for maintenance and
repairs for each respective vehicles. Any guesses?

User avatar
Ged
Posts: 3311
Joined: Mon May 13, 2013 1:48 pm
Location: Roke

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Ged » Thu Sep 12, 2013 10:18 pm

bb wrote:Guess my bias is the BMW is a better car - in terms of features and driving characteristics.

But since I also don't care to throw my money away the real question is how much more per year is the BMW going to cost to own.


You can do a 5 year cost to own comparison between the cars on a number of web sites like Edmunds and KBB. My guess is you will find you will pay about $3000 more per year for the BMW.

russellh
Posts: 57
Joined: Thu Sep 12, 2013 10:30 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by russellh » Thu Sep 12, 2013 10:31 pm

Do you like to drive? If yes, get the BMW. If no, get the Toyota.

goodenoughinvestor
Posts: 282
Joined: Fri Aug 09, 2013 10:33 am

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by goodenoughinvestor » Thu Sep 12, 2013 10:33 pm


chrischris
Posts: 91
Joined: Fri Apr 16, 2010 1:25 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by chrischris » Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:14 am

The word "better" means different things to people.

If better means reliable, nothing fancy transportation with reasonable features and comfort, the Toyota is for you.

If better means a more comfortable, better performance, basically better everything except reliability and maintenance cost, get the BMW.

In my opinion, every Boglehead has one expensive taste or a pricey hobby. For some it is their vehicle. If you get the BMW, you may not immediately appear to be a savvy saver and investor. That is only because it is hard to hide a premium vehicle from other people. Compare this to the Boglehead who likes expensive meals, pricey vacations, way over the top residence, fine wines or cigars, etc. None of us tend to have as keen of an insight into these type of purchases in comparison to one's vehicle.

If your finances are in order and you want the BMW, I would say a used BMW will not hurt you. Enjoy it and don't feel guilty.

(I drive a Mazda because I can't afford anything more than reliable transportation)

User avatar
wilpat
Posts: 534
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2008 7:30 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by wilpat » Fri Sep 13, 2013 2:31 am

Driving only 8000 miles per year for 10 years either car should hold up well. Modern cars go well beyond double that with very little trouble.
My wife's car is a PT Cruiser that we bought in August of 2000 and now has 54,000 miles (barely broken in). Only minor repairs in that time and the PT Cruiser is not nearly the quality of the cars you are looking at.
Contrary to the belief of many, profit is not a four letter word!

User avatar
Frugal Al
Posts: 1662
Joined: Fri May 28, 2010 10:09 am

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Frugal Al » Fri Sep 13, 2013 6:17 am

I agree with IPJ, these are very different vehicles and if you want the BMW for 25% more money, and can easily afford it, then why not?

I hadn't driven a BMW for a few years and I've been test driving them myself recently. Yes, they really are a great driver's car. I've been looking specifically at convertibles, but that's beside the point. My issue with BMW is their overall lack of robust engineering, the effect it has on dependability, and the hassle factor. Look up "BMW electric water pump failure" for example. The entire cooling system design is often recommended to be overhauled after about 6 years of normal driving. And it's not just a matter of maintenance on the system--the plastic bits and pieces get old and warp over repeated heat cycles as in the coolant tank and thermostat housing, and the water pump electronics can also fry ($1200 incl labor). The problem with the design is that it can fail almost without notice if the OBD codes aren't regularly monitored.

The good news is that the non-turbo 3.0l (the one you're considering) puts less stress on the cooling system and the problem isn't quite as bad. As another poster noted, with 8,000 miles per year your problems should be minimal. In my opinion it's probably the only BMW engine I'd have (sadly the BMW 3 series has moved to turbo 4s, dropping the venerable inline 6 cyl).

Your quoted price on the CPO BMW seems reasonable. In 5 or 6 years the value of the BMW and the Toyota will be about equal, so that $6k premium now will evaporate as depreciation. As many point out, it's not fun to own a BMW too far out of warranty. In the mean time, however, you'll be driving a great driver's car. Only you can decide if it's worth it to you.

TheOscarGuy
Posts: 411
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2012 1:10 pm
Location: MA

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by TheOscarGuy » Fri Sep 13, 2013 7:07 am

You will end up paying more than Camry, after the BMW will be out of warranty. Depending on how long you will keep the car, the difference may or may not be 6K.

I know that general impression here on this board is that BMWs break a lot. I can speak from personal experience that that is not true. You will end up paying more once they do break and you take it to the shop, but its not an unreliable car as many would have you believe.
I own an X5 and got to drive 3 series each time I could get my hands on a loaner (when the X5 was at the dealership for some work). There is *nothing* that I have driven, that is better than a 3 series. Its pure pleasure to drive. If you like driving, you would like it a lot.

I feel with questions like these, its not a money decision. How much do you like driving? Camry will, with greater probability, stay with you for a long time, and cost you less the longer you keep the car. However, you would be driving a Camry, which if you like driving, isn't a lot of fun and will get boring soon.

Keep It Simple
Posts: 298
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 5:07 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Keep It Simple » Fri Sep 13, 2013 9:08 am

bb wrote:I generally keep cars until they die but don't really plan my auto future out
muliple years. Change cars when there is a need to.

Brian


If you go with the BMW, you may need to change cars relatively quickly. Based on your quote above, you are looking for a reliable car, and the Camry is the only one which fits this description.

Now, if you are more interested in driving dynamics, then the BMW is your car. Just know that owning it will be far more expensive in maintenance/repairs than the Camry.

K.I.S.

bb
Posts: 274
Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:04 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by bb » Fri Sep 13, 2013 9:21 am

Thanks for everyone's input. I realize now the question I should have been
how much extra should I budget for the BMW (guestimate) over the Camry
for 10 years of ownership.

Edmunds only goes out first 5 years of ownership.

Then I can decide if the extra money would be worth it to me.

Brian

eharri3
Posts: 83
Joined: Tue Jul 09, 2013 11:13 am

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by eharri3 » Fri Sep 13, 2013 9:26 am

Knew a buddy with a 3 series. Scrimped and saved and picked it up during grad school. Shortly after he got married and started a family he dumped it for a Corolla. Said a BMW is the kind of car you enjoy for 4-5 years and then move on so the maintenance costs don't end up eating you alive.

Keep It Simple
Posts: 298
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 5:07 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Keep It Simple » Fri Sep 13, 2013 9:26 am

bb wrote:Thanks for everyone's input. I realize now the question I should have been
how much extra should I budget for the BMW (guestimate) over the Camry
for 10 years of ownership.

Edmunds only goes out first 5 years of ownership.

Then I can decide if the extra money would be worth it to me.

Brian



Over 10 years it could be substantial. I honestly would budget $15,000 to $20,000 more for the BMW, especially once it gets to be 6 or 7 years old and on. Every oil change, every brake job, every tire change...everything about it is way more costly than a Camry. Those darn things are expensive to upkeep!

K.I.S.

TheOscarGuy
Posts: 411
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2012 1:10 pm
Location: MA

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by TheOscarGuy » Fri Sep 13, 2013 10:05 am

Keep It Simple wrote:Over 10 years it could be substantial. I honestly would budget $15,000 to $20,000 more for the BMW, especially once it gets to be 6 or 7 years old and on. Every oil change, every brake job, every tire change...everything about it is way more costly than a Camry. Those darn things are expensive to upkeep!

K.I.S.


Really, 20,000? After warranty, for 3.5+2 years, that is ~$4444 per year, by that number, if he keeps the car for 10 years.
This is quickly going to become a "defend BMW" vs Camry, and I realize its a losing battle on the board. However, let us give some realistic numbers to OP here. Over $4K per year on a 3 series is quite high estimate. When the OP will be out of warranty, the car would have appx. 53K. This mileage is still low, and the car, still (mileagewise) new.

end of year 1: 17K
end of year 2: 25K
end of year 3: 33K
end of year 4: 41K
end of year 5: 49K
end of year 6: 57K (.5 year out of warranty)
end of year 7: 65K
end of year 8: 73K
end of year 9: 81K
end of year 10: 89K

I would still say you will not come out "ahead" if you are looking to 1. keep the car for 10 years, and 2. the difference in price is 6K. $6K for maintaining an out of warranty 3 series for a period of 4.5 years might not be enough. But NO WAY the number is 20K, unless you buy a lemon.

Keep It Simple
Posts: 298
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 5:07 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Keep It Simple » Fri Sep 13, 2013 10:13 am

ok - my numbers did not factor in the 5 year warranty period. So including the five year warranty period, over 10 years I would figure $10,000 to $15,000.

In other words, I would consider it to be more than one would want to spend extra if you are looking for a "deal".

Also remember there is a cost to that extended warranty, and with BMW that cost is very high.

K.I.S.

an_asker
Posts: 1933
Joined: Thu Jun 27, 2013 2:15 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by an_asker » Fri Sep 13, 2013 10:34 am

interplanetjanet wrote:An elephant for a dime is only a good deal if you need an elephant and have a dime.[...]
Work out what is a better deal *for you*. And, to heck with what anyone else thinks. :)

What if all you need is a horse (or donkey) but it costs a quarter, and you only have a nickel and dime? I would proffer that the elephant would be a good deal! ;-)

User avatar
Frugal Al
Posts: 1662
Joined: Fri May 28, 2010 10:09 am

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Frugal Al » Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:09 pm

TheOscarGuy wrote:I would still say you will not come out "ahead" if you are looking to 1. keep the car for 10 years, and 2. the difference in price is 6K. $6K for maintaining an out of warranty 3 series for a period of 4.5 years might not be enough. But NO WAY the number is 20K, unless you buy a lemon.

I agree, Oscar. I'm thinking probably $6k extra, maybe $10k max if something bad happens--we're talking low miles here. This is probably the most reliable vehicle BMW makes--no high pressure fuel pumps or turbo. Advice to the OP would be to pull OBD codes regularly (need a scanner that reads BMW codes). I'd even have an independent shop that specializes in BMWs look it over prior to the expiration of the warranty (there are often unnoticed warranty issues that the dealers will not point out). As long as you're aware of the potential costs and aren't buying over your head, just enjoy the car.

sport
Posts: 6140
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 3:26 pm
Location: Cleveland, OH

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by sport » Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:55 pm

I have no info to share on BMWs. However, as a longtime Camry driver, I can provide some insight:

bb wrote: The camry is a 4 cylinder which I am not in lovewith. To upgrade to the 6 cylinder in the camry you are probably at $30k.


If you have not already done so, I suggest you test drive the 4 cyl. Camry. Teamed with the 6 speed automatic transmission, the performance is surprisingly good.

bb wrote: I generally make the assumption thata car is worthless after 10 years (road salt = rust).

I have a 14-year old Camry (bought it new) and there is no rust. We have lots of salt on the roads here in the winter.

Jeff

technovelist
Posts: 2734
Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 9:02 pm
Contact:

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by technovelist » Fri Sep 13, 2013 3:30 pm

mike143 wrote:Acura TL

The TL is great if comfort is not a high priority.
I have one and love its performance, and it should be reliable (Honda) but it's not really good for long trips in my opinion.
In theory, theory and practice are identical. In practice, they often differ.

OneDayAtATime
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Sep 13, 2013 3:42 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by OneDayAtATime » Fri Sep 13, 2013 3:47 pm

I owned a BMW 330i for about 7 years and I absolutely loved the car. It was a joy to drive. However, just to give you some idea of the maintenance costs, I had a single Xenon headlight go out (power supply, not the bulb) and it cost >$900 to get it fixed. I traded it in for a Toyota pickup shortly thereafter.

Dave76
Posts: 564
Joined: Sat Mar 03, 2012 9:05 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Dave76 » Fri Sep 13, 2013 4:07 pm

Thrift vs spirited driving experience. I don't see any lower cost, fun-to-drive alternatives that match the BMW. I've never driven a Kia Optima or Volkswagen Jetta. Maybe a Mazda 6 comes close. I don't know. There once was a time when one didn't have to sacrifice one for the other -- Chrysler Lebaron GTS vs BMW 3-series; Peugeot 405 vs BMW 3-series. Today's low-cost sedans are boring.

ssquared87
Posts: 359
Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2013 9:54 am

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by ssquared87 » Fri Sep 13, 2013 4:12 pm

With the type of driving you do, you shouldn't have too many issues with the BMW. IF you do have issues they will be way more expensive to fix than a Toyota, but they don't break as often as many people around here claim. Can't give you a number though because who knows. You could have a hose that needs to be replaced and it will be a cheap fix, or the vanos will break and cost several thousand dollars.

Here's another thing to consider. Honda Accord. Same reliability of the Camry, and drives much much better. Not a BMW but definitely miles ahead of the Camry. The reviews on the latest Accord have been very impressive and mostly agree that it is the better car than Camry. It looks like you're looking at a Camry SE since you mention its around 24K and doesn't have sunroof. The accord EX lists for 24.8K and has more features than that the Camry SE, and includes sunroof.

Mazda 6 is also worth looking at and is even more fun to drive than the Accord, but the quality and quantity of their dealerships leaves much to be desired.

Personally if it was my decision and I only drove 8K miles, I'd go BMW without question, but I'm one of those bogleheads who just likes driving

User avatar
Abe
Posts: 1659
Joined: Fri Sep 18, 2009 5:24 pm
Location: Earth in the Milky Way Galaxy

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Abe » Fri Sep 13, 2013 6:10 pm

Don't know which is the better deal, but if this was my only choice, I would take the Camry for several reasons. 1) I am partial to Toyotas because I have one and I've had very few problems with it. 2) I think the maintenance and repairs would be less with the Camry. 3) The Camry cost less. 4) The Camry is new. 5) I'm not in to luxury cars. I'm sure there are more reasons, but that is all I can think of right now.
However, that's just me. Buy what you want.
Slow and steady wins the race.

tjschraf
Posts: 99
Joined: Tue Jul 09, 2013 11:24 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by tjschraf » Fri Sep 13, 2013 10:35 pm

As a car guy, I say the BMW, especially given the warranties.


But, as a money guy, TOYOTA hands down.

Honestly, I would recommend a preowned Lexus, you would be surprised at the potential in them. Clearly, they aren't quite the experience to drive as a BMW, but you can drive them for 20 years past a BMW.

They are all made very well, at those price points, I would consider a Lexus IS 350, I had one years ago. Keep in mind, the style recently changed, but to me, who cares.

ssquared87
Posts: 359
Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2013 9:54 am

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by ssquared87 » Thu Sep 19, 2013 8:58 am

tjschraf wrote:As a car guy, I say the BMW, especially given the warranties.


But, as a money guy, TOYOTA hands down.

Honestly, I would recommend a preowned Lexus, you would be surprised at the potential in them. Clearly, they aren't quite the experience to drive as a BMW, but you can drive them for 20 years past a BMW.

They are all made very well, at those price points, I would consider a Lexus IS 350, I had one years ago. Keep in mind, the style recently changed, but to me, who cares.


For someone like the OP who enjoys driving, there is little point in getting a Lexus with two exceptions. Most of them are essentially the higher trim Toyotoa models with better quality interior but the driving experience is non-existant.

But there are two exceptions. As you mentioned the latest model IS has become a solid 3-series contender, although to me it's still not there and the styling is pretty awful. The other exception is the latest model GS which is superior to the BMW 5 in driving dynamcs and styling. Both of these options though would be way above the OP's budget.

Keep It Simple
Posts: 298
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 5:07 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Keep It Simple » Thu Sep 19, 2013 9:29 am

ssquared87 wrote:

For someone like the OP who enjoys driving, there is little point in getting a Lexus with two exceptions. Most of them are essentially the higher trim Toyota models with better quality interior but the driving experience is non-existant.

But there are two exceptions. As you mentioned the latest model IS has become a solid 3-series contender, although to me it's still not there and the styling is pretty awful. The other exception is the latest model GS which is superior to the BMW 5 in driving dynamcs and styling. Both of these options though would be way above the OP's budget.


No question I would choose the Lexus IS over the BMW 3 series if it was possible to do so. I believe in the next 10 years we will see competitors to the 3 series like the Lexus IS begin to equal the driving dynamics of the 3 series, and can you imagine this, do so with excellent reliability. Thus eliminating the need to spend premium dollars not only purchasing the vehicle, but also to keep it running.

Oh can you imagine that?

I don't blame BMW drivers for paying the extra money for the driving experience...I blame BMW for putting a product out that habitually lets its' customers down because they know they can and people will still buy it because they do "drive" well when they are working.

K.I.S.

Keep It Simple
Posts: 298
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 5:07 pm

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by Keep It Simple » Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:05 am

You have to Google "BMW M6 owner upset" and watch this video. It is hilarious and kind of exemplifies what I think of BMW.

K.I.S.

ssquared87
Posts: 359
Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2013 9:54 am

Re: Which is the better car deal?

Post by ssquared87 » Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:57 am

Keep It Simple wrote:
ssquared87 wrote:

For someone like the OP who enjoys driving, there is little point in getting a Lexus with two exceptions. Most of them are essentially the higher trim Toyota models with better quality interior but the driving experience is non-existant.

But there are two exceptions. As you mentioned the latest model IS has become a solid 3-series contender, although to me it's still not there and the styling is pretty awful. The other exception is the latest model GS which is superior to the BMW 5 in driving dynamcs and styling. Both of these options though would be way above the OP's budget.


No question I would choose the Lexus IS over the BMW 3 series if it was possible to do so. I believe in the next 10 years we will see competitors to the 3 series like the Lexus IS begin to equal the driving dynamics of the 3 series, and can you imagine this, do so with excellent reliability. Thus eliminating the need to spend premium dollars not only purchasing the vehicle, but also to keep it running.

Oh can you imagine that?

I don't blame BMW drivers for paying the extra money for the driving experience...I blame BMW for putting a product out that habitually lets its' customers down because they know they can and people will still buy it because they do "drive" well when they are working.

K.I.S.


100% agree, BMW is exploiting their competitive edge to the max to suck every once of profit out of their customers. Don't think you need to wait 10 years. I tried out the Cadillac ATS was very impressed! Drivetrain isn't as refined but dynamcis are there

Post Reply