Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

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gator1
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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by gator1 » Mon Feb 27, 2017 8:26 pm

Why not a gently Used car that's luxury and will be as close to a german sedan you can probably get but give you amazing quality and reliability? Lexus IS350. It hauls ass.

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tcassette
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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by tcassette » Mon Feb 27, 2017 8:58 pm

drat69 wrote:We drive Acura TL 2006 and Mercedes SUV 2002. Maintenance on Merc would have cost me almost as much as another car (if I wasn't doing my own repairs). Acura's reliability is unbelievable except for the infamous rust issue.

German cars now have electric power steering and no longer give you the driving experience that they used to. I drove a new E Class as a loaner and very disappointed. Main difference from Japanese vehicles is that rear wheel driving is much better feeling than front wheel drive. If Japanese manufactured rear wheel drive cars, there would be no reason to recommend German cars.
Several Japanese brands including Lexus and Infiniti offer rear wheel (or all wheel) drive models.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by LarryAllen » Mon Feb 27, 2017 9:14 pm

It seems the answer is simple. If you want the cache that comes with German you go with that. If you care about your pocketbook you go new Japanese. The ride might be slightly better and quieter in the German car but not a big difference. If that matters go Lexus, Infiniti, Acura and even Genesis. You can get a new Genesis for about 20% off sticker price if you are a decent negotiator. That is a lot of car for the money.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by stoptothink » Mon Feb 27, 2017 9:27 pm

LarryAllen wrote: You can get a new Genesis for about 20% off sticker price if you are a decent negotiator. That is a lot of car for the money.
My boss, whose primary mode of transportation is his personal Gulfstream, pretty recently splurged on a new Genesis. He can easily afford to drive absolutely anything he wants, but he told me once he drove the Genesis he simply couldn't justify the cost difference to get an S-class or Maybach or Bentley (whatever). I've ridden in it twice; it is a pretty luxurious ride. The only thing recently that I really have it to compare to is my brother's E63 AMG and the fit, finish, and stereo in the Genesis was noticeably better at about half the cost. Obviously it doesn't go like the AMG, but it's no slug either.

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snackdog
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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by snackdog » Tue Feb 28, 2017 5:47 am

European cars have been wildly oversold in North America to the point where they have no cache at all. You can find them all over any working class suburb in America. Nearly every American owns one at some point. They are like diamonds - nothing special but market hype.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by willie838 » Tue Feb 28, 2017 7:52 am

I drove an 01 civic to 278/death (radiator went, ignition locked about the Same time)

Upgraded to a 14 Lexus is 250 f sport awd... 14.5k miles, 29k purchase price.

Because even when I'm going to a nice car.... I'll still defer to a tested Japanese brand and their track record for reliability (it's a Toyota underneath, just one with a way more appealing exterior and interior package).

I love this car, seriously. I have had multiple sport bikes and I would leave a store or wherever and Just get a... "Dammo, look at this thing" feeling where their asthetic would just please me and make me proud.

My f sport elicits the same feeling every time I'm walking out to it.


Shied away from German due to maintenance..... I have private mechanics that will do Toyota and by default.... Lexus work.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Valuethinker » Tue Feb 28, 2017 8:40 am

Alexa9 wrote:A loaded Camry or Accord is in the 30k range. A 3 year old Mercedes E Class or BMW 5 series with less than 50k is in the same range. Why would you pick one or the other? The big one for me is maintenance costs on the German cars. Is the luxury car that much better of a driving experience? Certainly a new luxury vehicle is out of the question for me in the $50k range but they depreciate quickly making them relatively affordable lightly used. Certainly Lexus has a combination of luxury and Japanese reliability, although I am not sold on their styling.
German cars are more fun to drive.

They are NOT economically sensible against Japanese cars. Less reliable, and when they do need fixing, it costs-- spares are expensive, fewer people can repair them, etc. etc.

Once you accept that this is not a sensible economic decision (to go German) you are free to indulge yourself (or not) but you won't kid yourself regarding the economics of the decision.

If you are willing to go used I'd look at 3 year old Lexuses (Lexi? ;-)).

If you want to have a tempestuous relationship with your car, like a boyfriend/ girlfriend who is high maintenance but exciting when it's all going well, buy the German car (prefer BMW over Mercedes for the more sporty drive, but that may be as much brand image as reality).

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Valuethinker » Tue Feb 28, 2017 8:44 am

snackdog wrote:European cars have been wildly oversold in North America to the point where they have no cache at all. You can find them all over any working class suburb in America. Nearly every American owns one at some point. They are like diamonds - nothing special but market hype.
Wow. That seems essentially impossible?

Maybe 5% of whole US new car market is European (less than that?). I mean including Range Rover etc.

"nearly every American owns one at some point"? Mathematically I don't think that would be possible? I happen to know a lot of North American what were once called "yuppies" so yes Jettas, Audis, BMWs, Mercedes even-- but that's a truly rarefied sample, living in some of the poshest 'hoods in northeastern North America.

I think the key is the leasing. I think I read that 90% of BMWs & Mercedes in North America are sold on lease? Thus, it's the monthly payment, and thinking of my friend who drives a Merc (and the least likely to do so-- previous car was a 10 year old Toyota) it was all about the cheap finance (plus a new car every 3-4 years).

That leasing does mean the cars are "aspirational" but affordable.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by nova1968 » Tue Feb 28, 2017 8:55 am

The Japanese car is a great every day car and offers cheap maintenance, good gas mileage and is good for errands and everyday use such as going to work. A German car would be more practical as a week end car with mileage kept to a minimal.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by yukonjack » Tue Feb 28, 2017 9:13 am

snackdog wrote:European cars have been wildly oversold in North America to the point where they have no cache at all. You can find them all over any working class suburb in America. Nearly every American owns one at some point. They are like diamonds - nothing special but market hype.
While this might not be technically true I agree with the line of thinking here. I see countless luxury vehicles parked in front of houses that may have cost twice as much as the vehicle. That just doesn't seem logical. I think it ties into the concept of how people overspend and are left with nothing to retire on.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by emoore » Tue Feb 28, 2017 9:21 am

yukonjack wrote:
snackdog wrote:European cars have been wildly oversold in North America to the point where they have no cache at all. You can find them all over any working class suburb in America. Nearly every American owns one at some point. They are like diamonds - nothing special but market hype.
While this might not be technically true I agree with the line of thinking here. I see countless luxury vehicles parked in front of houses that may have cost twice as much as the vehicle. That just doesn't seem logical. I think it ties into the concept of how people overspend and are left with nothing to retire on.
There seem to be way more luxury american and japanese cars than German cars. So it doesn't really matter which one they buy, they might be overspending anyway.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by takeshi » Tue Feb 28, 2017 10:29 am

Alexa9 wrote:Used German Luxury vs New Japanese
I understand why you're making this comparison but as someone else said, the broad sweeping generalization (which, of course, has its pitfalls as relying on country of origin is bound to do) is that you want to consider new German cars and used Japanese cars.
Alexa9 wrote:Is the luxury car that much better of a driving experience?
"Luxury" is a vague term and covers a wide range of vehicles. Keep in mind that all luxury cars are not identical. What are you specifically looking for from your car? What are your top priorities? what have you actually looked at in person? Have you done any test driving? That's really the way to determine what's "best" for you.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by LarryAllen » Tue Feb 28, 2017 12:59 pm

stoptothink wrote:
LarryAllen wrote: You can get a new Genesis for about 20% off sticker price if you are a decent negotiator. That is a lot of car for the money.
My boss, whose primary mode of transportation is his personal Gulfstream, pretty recently splurged on a new Genesis. He can easily afford to drive absolutely anything he wants, but he told me once he drove the Genesis he simply couldn't justify the cost difference to get an S-class or Maybach or Bentley (whatever). I've ridden in it twice; it is a pretty luxurious ride. The only thing recently that I really have it to compare to is my brother's E63 AMG and the fit, finish, and stereo in the Genesis was noticeably better at about half the cost. Obviously it doesn't go like the AMG, but it's no slug either.
That's good info and been my experience as well. My friend loves his. I would add though that it's probably not right of us to compare the Genesis to the German luxury cars like an AMG E63. Different cars. I would compare them to similarly priced cars and I think the Genesis probably blows them away in all regards. I'll be interested to see how they do in the auto magazines when they do their comparisons of similar cars. Next time I am shopping for a new car I plan to check out what Genesis has to offer.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Valuethinker » Tue Feb 28, 2017 1:33 pm

yukonjack wrote:
snackdog wrote:European cars have been wildly oversold in North America to the point where they have no cache at all. You can find them all over any working class suburb in America. Nearly every American owns one at some point. They are like diamonds - nothing special but market hype.
While this might not be technically true I agree with the line of thinking here. I see countless luxury vehicles parked in front of houses that may have cost twice as much as the vehicle. That just doesn't seem logical. I think it ties into the concept of how people overspend and are left with nothing to retire on.
What's happening, I understand, is that in North America now cars are largely bought on finance. Including loans up to 7-8 years (i.e. longer than the average time a household holds a new car).

I was surprised at a friend driving a Mercedes, but he was getting 1.9% on his lease. So the numbers worked out.

Is this overconsumption v. driving a 10 year old Japanese car? Definitely yes. However in the context where most buyers of new cars probably shed them within 5 years, perhaps it is not.

"Usership rather than ownership as a business model" was how a BMW/ Mercedes guy (in corporate, not dealership) put it to me. Car companies are finance companies with manufacturing subsidiaries, it seems.

There is a risk of sub prime in such an environment, and a (hopefully smaller) bubble collapse a la the US housing market.

I am generally sceptical about direct mappings to savings behaviour in this one sense: median incomes have stagnated for decades. So the response of the average car buyer may not be irrational.

And if you live in a cheap housing area, it's not so much that your car is expensive, as your house is cheap.

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Alexa9
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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Alexa9 » Tue Feb 28, 2017 3:11 pm

Valuethinker wrote:
Alexa9 wrote:A loaded Camry or Accord is in the 30k range. A 3 year old Mercedes E Class or BMW 5 series with less than 50k is in the same range. Why would you pick one or the other? The big one for me is maintenance costs on the German cars. Is the luxury car that much better of a driving experience? Certainly a new luxury vehicle is out of the question for me in the $50k range but they depreciate quickly making them relatively affordable lightly used. Certainly Lexus has a combination of luxury and Japanese reliability, although I am not sold on their styling.
German cars are more fun to drive.

They are NOT economically sensible against Japanese cars. Less reliable, and when they do need fixing, it costs-- spares are expensive, fewer people can repair them, etc. etc.

Once you accept that this is not a sensible economic decision (to go German) you are free to indulge yourself (or not) but you won't kid yourself regarding the economics of the decision.

If you are willing to go used I'd look at 3 year old Lexuses (Lexi? ;-)).

If you want to have a tempestuous relationship with your car, like a boyfriend/ girlfriend who is high maintenance but exciting when it's all going well, buy the German car (prefer BMW over Mercedes for the more sporty drive, but that may be as much brand image as reality).
Yes I'd be interested to see the total cost of ownership over the lifetime of the new Japanese vs. used German assuming they cost the same to purchase. Then I would have to determine if the creature comforts are worth it.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Tue Feb 28, 2017 3:19 pm

Valuethinker wrote: Maybe 5% of whole US new car market is European (less than that?). I mean including Range Rover etc.

"nearly every American owns one at some point"? Mathematically I don't think that would be possible? I happen to know a lot of North American what were once called "yuppies" so yes Jettas, Audis, BMWs, Mercedes even-- but that's a truly rarefied sample, living in some of the poshest 'hoods in northeastern North America.
I agreed with you on first glance, then thought about it for a second with respect to cars I've owned and had to actually list European cars I've owned:

69 MGB
65 MGB
76 MG Midget
74 Alfa Romeo spider
75 Alfa Romeo spider
another 75 Alfa Romeo spider
81 BMW 320i
90 BMW M3
98 Audi A4
2000 Audi S4
2007 Lotus Elise

Although my list of Japanese and American cars is quite a bit longer (several dozen).
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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Valuethinker » Wed Mar 01, 2017 7:42 am

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Valuethinker wrote: Maybe 5% of whole US new car market is European (less than that?). I mean including Range Rover etc.

"nearly every American owns one at some point"? Mathematically I don't think that would be possible? I happen to know a lot of North American what were once called "yuppies" so yes Jettas, Audis, BMWs, Mercedes even-- but that's a truly rarefied sample, living in some of the poshest 'hoods in northeastern North America.
I agreed with you on first glance, then thought about it for a second with respect to cars I've owned and had to actually list European cars I've owned:

69 MGB
65 MGB
76 MG Midget
74 Alfa Romeo spider
75 Alfa Romeo spider
another 75 Alfa Romeo spider
81 BMW 320i
90 BMW M3
98 Audi A4
2000 Audi S4
2007 Lotus Elise

Although my list of Japanese and American cars is quite a bit longer (several dozen).
Opposite extreme, my father

Morris Minor (or 1000)?
AMC Rambler Classic
Dodge Dart
Pontiac Lemans (worst of the lot)
Chrysler Lebaron
Honda Accord
Honda Accord

Changed his car on average about every 10 years (earlier than that for the first 2). So 1 European car in over 50 years of driving.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Valuethinker » Wed Mar 01, 2017 7:44 am

Alexa9 wrote:
Valuethinker wrote:
Alexa9 wrote:A loaded Camry or Accord is in the 30k range. A 3 year old Mercedes E Class or BMW 5 series with less than 50k is in the same range. Why would you pick one or the other? The big one for me is maintenance costs on the German cars. Is the luxury car that much better of a driving experience? Certainly a new luxury vehicle is out of the question for me in the $50k range but they depreciate quickly making them relatively affordable lightly used. Certainly Lexus has a combination of luxury and Japanese reliability, although I am not sold on their styling.
German cars are more fun to drive.

They are NOT economically sensible against Japanese cars. Less reliable, and when they do need fixing, it costs-- spares are expensive, fewer people can repair them, etc. etc.

Once you accept that this is not a sensible economic decision (to go German) you are free to indulge yourself (or not) but you won't kid yourself regarding the economics of the decision.

If you are willing to go used I'd look at 3 year old Lexuses (Lexi? ;-)).

If you want to have a tempestuous relationship with your car, like a boyfriend/ girlfriend who is high maintenance but exciting when it's all going well, buy the German car (prefer BMW over Mercedes for the more sporty drive, but that may be as much brand image as reality).
Yes I'd be interested to see the total cost of ownership over the lifetime of the new Japanese vs. used German assuming they cost the same to purchase. Then I would have to determine if the creature comforts are worth it.
Not sure why a used Japanese is ruled out? Price too close to new?

If you want creature comforts, I think a Lexus or Acura would have it. You own a German car for the driving experience (unless they have "adjusted" it to North American norms?).

You can look up the depreciation on German makes. Probably there is reliability and cost of repairs data out there (Consumer Reports?). Rest assured, they are not cheap cars to own.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by MossySF » Thu Mar 02, 2017 1:38 am

I'll insert a caveat about the driving experience. It dramatically decreases as you get into the heavier models. From looking at the OP's target of $50K used, that's about the price of 3-year old BMW 750. You'd just be driving a boat with a big engine and is not that different from a Japanese car at usual commute speeds. You couldn't even take it on twisty switchbacks on the weekend without having your passengers vomit everywhere.

So yes -- a BMW 230/240 convertible would be a blast to take on weekend roadtrips -- but you won't get that same feeling with their more expensive/heavier/larger brethen.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by CaliJim » Thu Mar 02, 2017 1:53 am

To give you an idea about maintenance, a simple thing, like replacing O2 sensors is 3x for the BMW vs Honda.

Bosh 740I O2 sensor: $100 each for the parts, need 4, and $200 minimum for labor = $600.
Honda Accord O2 sensor: $20 each for parts, need 2, and $100 maybe for the labor = less than $200.

I loved driving my old BMW 740i. Love me a luxury V8 going 80+ mph like it was 30 on a straight wide open freeway out west. But my wallet hated it.
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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by FandangoDave5010 » Thu Mar 02, 2017 4:18 am

I bought a loaded 2017 Acura RDX for 50K, the price of a used BMW X5. I think I got the better deal and car if not the prestige. What puzzled me was that the salesman tried his utmost to get me to lease instead of trade+cash...and proved it by showing me the math that it was cheaper to lease. What's the story here?

I had 3 new Honda Civics between 1973 -1983 where a VW would have mechanically served me better. Today I prefer Japanese even though my wife is from Stuttgart. Her brother who works for MB helped strip down two Toyotas and told me: "We know how they make it so good but we don't know how they make it so cheap!" ... and that is the story of German vs Japanese cars today.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Valuethinker » Thu Mar 02, 2017 6:46 am

FandangoDave5010 wrote:I bought a loaded 2017 Acura RDX for 50K, the price of a used BMW X5. I think I got the better deal and car if not the prestige. What puzzled me was that the salesman tried his utmost to get me to lease instead of trade+cash...and proved it by showing me the math that it was cheaper to lease. What's the story here?
Ford Motor Co has been described as a "consumer finance company with a car manufacturing subsidiary".

So I presume he gets significant extra commission for selling you the car lease. Also lessors tend to return the cars at the end of the lease, and get a new one, thus locking in future sales-- you are not likely to buy it and run it into the ground as a lessor.

I don't know much about car leases (and I am not based in N America) but also the terms are sufficiently restrictive that no doubt the leasing cos make a significant amount of money on those who exceed the mileage/ have some form of uncovered damage to the car.

Where the leasing cos & car manuf will get killed is when the returned cars are worth significantly less than what the lease assumes. WIth 7+ year lease terms out there, they have deferred that pain, but it is still out there.

In the "usership not ownership" model, you can't do away with depreciation and risk of ownership. You can only shift that around.

Bloomberg has been covering this-- we can see the seeds sown of a mini disaster like 2008, but in car finance.
I had 3 new Honda Civics between 1973 -1983 where a VW would have mechanically served me better. Today I prefer Japanese even though my wife is from Stuttgart. Her brother who works for MB helped strip down two Toyotas and told me: "We know how they make it so good but we don't know how they make it so cheap!" ... and that is the story of German vs Japanese cars today.
Yes and the Japanese are still better at quality control.

Those old Rabbits and Jettas, particularly the ones made in the Pennsylvania plant that VW eventually closed, were mechanical disasters as I recall-- couldn't take North American road salt, cost a bomb to fix.

A big part of Japanese success is they squeeze their supply chain-- hold equity in their suppliers and drive down their margins. Also Japanese car companies make less money than Daimler and BMW. VW the picture is more complex (so many different brands and segments).

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by lazydavid » Thu Mar 02, 2017 12:27 pm

Valuethinker wrote:Maybe 5% of whole US new car market is European (less than that?). I mean including Range Rover etc.
8.7%, to be exact. The big three alone--Mercedes (excluding Smart), BMW (excluding Mini), Audi--are over 5%. Source But all European makes combined roughly equals Honda, slightly ahead of Nissan, and behind any of: Chevrolet, Ford, Toyota

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Buster65 » Thu Mar 02, 2017 1:12 pm

This is my experience:
The "bad"
(1) I owned a VW Passat and had to part with it because I would get condensation on the inside of the window that dealer wouldn't repair.
(2) I bought a used Audi A6 and had it for 6 months before things started to go so I sold it. Not to mention I got about 15-18mpg which the dealer said was an issue but they didn't know how to fix it.
(3) I bought a new Audi A3 TDI which I like but Audi is buying it back because of the emissions scandal. This I'm happy about since their are several things I don't like about the car (a bit too small and low profile tires) and I'm essentially driving the car for 3-4 years for free.

The "good:
(1) Bought a Honda CR-V that is now 10 years old that I passed along to my son who will easily have it another 10 years.
(2) Owned a Civic which we bought used when I first got married that held up for ever.
(2) Bought a Subaru Outback that we will have for at least a decade or more. The car has never had any mechanical problems.

So I too was thinking about a certified used German luxury car. Perhaps a Mercedes C or a brand new modest Japanese car. I have yet to decide but it will either be a luxury Japanese car (Acuru, Lexus, Infinity) or something like the Subaru Legacy. For me its not that I can't afford the German car its that I have zero interest in owning a car with built in obsolescence that is over engineered.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by nova1968 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:34 am

I believe a German Luxury car is more suitable as week end car where a Japanese car would be more functional as an everyday car. At one time I was looking Lexus RX350 and the Mercedes SUV MB class. I recall they were in the same price range but from talking with Mercedes owners maintenance repair prices for the Mercedes are quite substantial where a Lexus can be repaired at a Toyota dealership.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by jcchen » Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:30 am

I would get a new Accord / Camry with the optional 6 cylinder engine. This engine would provide some fun factor. Or a used Lexus or Avalon. I can see the appeal of a German car, but dislike spending time in repair shops.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by 2Birds1Stone » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:59 pm

I went with a lightly used Infiniti G37s.

Paid $17k for an example with 22k miles on the odometer despite it's age (5 years old at time of purchase).

The best of both worlds! Interior is amazing, and the 330hp engine mated to a 6 speed manual transmission is a joy to drive.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Hanksmoney » Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:26 pm

Alexa9 wrote:A loaded Camry or Accord is in the 30k range. A 3 year old Mercedes E Class or BMW 5 series with less than 50k is in the same range. Why would you pick one or the other? The big one for me is maintenance costs on the German cars. Is the luxury car that much better of a driving experience? Certainly a new luxury vehicle is out of the question for me in the $50k range but they depreciate quickly making them relatively affordable lightly used. Certainly Lexus has a combination of luxury and Japanese reliability, although I am not sold on their styling.

As someone suggested - you'll get the best of both worlds with a Lexus. I did pretty extensive reliability research on consumer reports and other sites which showed Toyota/Lexus in a league of their own (a bit above Honda). That's why I went with a Toyota Tundra - BUT back you your concern - I've turned into a pretty big fan-boy and would go Lexus if I agreed with the styling.

http://www.truedelta.com/Lexus-GS-vs-BM ... son,158-20

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by jharkin » Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:51 pm

This is the cliche' answer... back when I was single I lived with 2 roommates. All 3 of us male, 20s, working in engineering/hi tech:

I drove an Acura RSX S-type hatchback, bought new
Roomate #1 drove a used B5 Audi S4
Roomate #2 drove a used E36 BMW M3

The two of them spent more time in the shop in a typical year, than I did in 11 years of owning the Acura. All three of us learned to identify a failing Audi water pump by ear ;) I dont think either of them saved much if anything for retirement either.

Having said that, I would happily trade my little hatch for either one of their cars for a weekend drive. Like others... I think once in my life Id try owning one just for the experience. BUt honestly when the time comes I'd probably end up buying something like a used Miata anyway - what I like about those cars is the driving dynamics, not the image. And a Miata kills most of them in that department.

They *say* Audi is making big improvements and catching up to the Japanese... If this gets proven true over many years I may change my mind. Otherwise I stay with Honda and Toyota for daily driving needs.

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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by fittan » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:35 am

I had the same "itch" few years ago...bought a 3 year old A4 (60K miles) for $20K. I knew the previous owner and the car history so I reasoned my risk is limited and I may be "lucky". I was wrong...I drove it for 3 years and it has been problems after problems, to the point where I am fearful that the "check engine" light comes on. Here's a brief history of what went wrong...

1) At 64K, steering wheel vibrates at low speed...due to faulty power steering hose. $700. Ok fine.

2) At 70K, Catalyst converter failed. Luckily it is covered under EPA warranty. Cat failure under 100K? Strange but...fine.

3) At 75K, Turbo failed due to wastegate not closing (common problem if you goggle). Turbo fails under 100K? Hmmm....

4) At 90K, front wheels bearing failed (both sides). Ok...it must be something with "performance" vehicle....fine.

5) At 100K, parking sensor speaker failed. It is a small speaker inside the cabin that beeps when you're near object. Now I am pissed...IT IS A SPEAKER!!!!

6) At 105K, the blower fan starts squeaking. Huh? Why would the fan motor squeak? Luckily I was able to fix myself by applying some WD40.

7) At 110K, visor clips broke. Arghhh....seriously? It is a clip! This was the final straw for me. I have owned Nissan, Honda, Toyota and never had experienced such failures. I stared in amazement at the overly engineered visor clip (see link below). It is a 2 piece system with a metal tensioner and the base of the "hook" is notched which obviously weakened it. I compared of my wife RAV4 clip; a single piece plastic with a wide base. That thing wouldn't break in a 100 years (a bit exaggeration but you get my point).

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Fit-AUDI-A3-A4- ... 2067070545

Anyway, I sold it after 3 years for $12K and washed my hands of "German engineering". If I want "performance" I would simply go with Acura or Lexus. In the meantime I am contended with my Toyotas.


Bacchus01
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Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Bacchus01 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 7:39 pm

EddieGee wrote:The maintenance/repair costs on a used German luxury vehicle will eat you alive; from an economic standpoint the new Japanese car is the clear choice. OTOH if you want the prestige / fun /whatever of a BMW or Mercedes then go for it... just be aware that it will cost you.
Not always true. I have a 2012 528 that I bought CPO with 20K miles in 2014. It now has 87K miles and I've never even opened the hood. New tires last fall. Get oil changed every 10K miles. Not a peep otherwise. Never even Had the brakes done.

Granted, I drive 110 miles on the highway a day.

ragabnh
Posts: 131
Joined: Mon May 19, 2008 3:48 pm

Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by ragabnh » Thu Mar 23, 2017 6:12 am

Owned various types of cars and when it comes to reliability they are rated as follows (TOP IS SUPERIOR)

1990 Lexus LS400,
79 Mercedes 280 S,
2013 Lexus LX 570,
2014 Lexus LX 460
2002 Lexus LS 430
79 Toyota Supra
76 Toyota Corola
2008 FJ Cruiser Toyota
93 Toyota Previa
84 Honda CRX
77 Toyota Celica
74 VW Camper
86 Nissan Maxima
76 Mazda 929
2013 BMW 328 IX
81 Chevy Cavaliers
87 BMW 535 I
80 Nissan 180 SX
75 Mazda RX4

In addition to 2 Toyota Pickups (76, 94) that were super reliable and an OK 97 Dodge Ram pick up.

srt7
Posts: 226
Joined: Mon Sep 29, 2014 12:19 pm

Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by srt7 » Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:13 am

Alexa9 wrote:A loaded Camry or Accord is in the 30k range. A 3 year old Mercedes E Class or BMW 5 series with less than 50k is in the same range. Why would you pick one or the other? The big one for me is maintenance costs on the German cars. Is the luxury car that much better of a driving experience? Certainly a new luxury vehicle is out of the question for me in the $50k range but they depreciate quickly making them relatively affordable lightly used. Certainly Lexus has a combination of luxury and Japanese reliability, although I am not sold on their styling.

I was in your position not too long ago. If you're asking this question then you know what is in your heart :happy So why not get that bimmer/benz, play around with it for a few years, get it out of your system and then get the honda/toyota so you can live happily ever after :P As others have mentioned, lease a bimmer/benz and buy a honda/toyota.

BTW ... I went with a new Lexus since IMHV they're finally getting in to modern designs (as opposed to the boring designs of yesteryear). After test driving a X5 and RX350 back-to-back 3 times I finally could confirm that in sport mode, the RX was more fun to drive!

Happy Motoring!
I can't think of anything more luxurious than owning my time. - remomnyc

chuppi
Posts: 138
Joined: Sat Jun 16, 2012 9:47 am

Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by chuppi » Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:28 am

I am in a similar situation and I am kind of getting both. We have a 2013 subaru outback and 2008 infiniti G35. My brother is taking my outback and I am getting 2014 mdx for 7 seats to replace it. I am looking in carmax and will pick up one very soon.
Outback is manual transmission and I want to drive manual for another 3-4 years before going fully electric. I haven't had a german car and so I want to give it a try. G35 is luxurious and powerful and looks as good as new with 75K miles but I am bored of it. I am looking to trade it in for 2014-15 bmw 3series manual transmission (their new ones don't have manual transmission) and with remaining warranty and extended by CPO. I am fine with depreciation and some maintenance but I don't want it to completely break down on me. So will only buy one with some kind of warranty.

lazydavid
Posts: 1805
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by lazydavid » Thu Mar 23, 2017 12:12 pm

chuppi wrote:I am looking to trade it in for 2014-15 bmw 3series manual transmission (their new ones don't have manual transmission) and with remaining warranty and extended by CPO.

:confused A 6-speed manual is a $0 option on every single 2017 3-series except the 330e hybrid.

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Sandtrap
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Location: HawaiišŸ˜€ Northern AZ.šŸ˜³ Retired.

Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by Sandtrap » Thu Mar 23, 2017 12:17 pm

Lexus :happy

SurferLife
Posts: 267
Joined: Sun Jun 15, 2014 1:57 am

Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by SurferLife » Thu Mar 23, 2017 12:40 pm

In our family, we only buy Honda or Toyota, because we drive our vehicles into the ground and these auto makers are far above average when it comes to reliability. We have an Acura MDX right now with 162,000, and a 4Runner with 240,000, with no plans to buy a new vehicle anytime soon. You have chosen two of the most reliable vehicles with a Camary and Accord, so that right there would settle it for us. I think a BMW would be nice and "fun", but we wouldn't go that route due to the maintenance costs, but moreso becuase of the reliability concerns. I did end up with a 3 series BMW for 2 years when I lived in Germany, and it was a hoot and I loved cornering in it, but it did have its share of mechanical issues and also left my wife stranded once.

emoore
Posts: 472
Joined: Mon Mar 04, 2013 8:16 pm

Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by emoore » Thu Mar 23, 2017 12:44 pm

lazydavid wrote:
chuppi wrote:I am looking to trade it in for 2014-15 bmw 3series manual transmission (their new ones don't have manual transmission) and with remaining warranty and extended by CPO.

:confused A 6-speed manual is a $0 option on every single 2017 3-series except the 330e hybrid.
Not for the AWD ones, specifically the 330XI and 320XI. The 340XI might still have a manual and AWD.

lazydavid
Posts: 1805
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

Post by lazydavid » Thu Mar 23, 2017 2:53 pm

emoore wrote:Not for the AWD ones, specifically the 330XI and 320XI. The 340XI might still have a manual and AWD.
I see. I looked at every RWD, and only spot-checked the xDrive, probably because I wouldn't buy one. :) They do still offer it on the 340i xDrive.

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