Last post on May 30, 2013 at 3:26 PM
You are in the Sedans
What is this discussion about?
Lexus GS 430, Acura RL, BMW 5 Series, Volvo S80, Audi A6, Infiniti M35, Infiniti M45, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Cadillac STS, Sedan
#5487 of 10339 Re: see a lot of 525's [lexusguy]
Dec 11, 2005 (8:47 am)
Although they all charge more for the higher HP versions, HP is not exactly the price of entry into this league.
And, while you may be correct "objectively" about the G35 being able to be considered competition for the 5, typically the M is relegated to that duty and is so perceived both by the buying public and the automotive editors and writers.
The thing that kindof rubs me the wrong way is that the 525 and the 530 use "essentially" the same engine. My understanding is that the engines have a virtually identical appearance. It is as if the same amounts of metal alloys, plastics and electronics (and assembly labor) are used and yet 3.0 engine A has 225 HP and engine B has 255.
Back in the seventies when I first started in IT, there was a brand of computer (no longer in business) that was widely used commercially and it was sold with several throughput capabilities (aka speed). The smallest and slowest machine could be updated to be either larger and/or faster. It became known that all machines were essentially built to be the same speed and that what were essentially jumper cables were attached to the machines effectively slowing the machine down. Then when the customer wanted to upgrade the machine, the customer engineer would simply remove the jumper cables and ask for a 5 figure check for doing so.
I know, conceptually, how and why the X25 and X30 versions using the same engines achieve either lower or higher output -- yet, my personal perception is that it is more "marketing" than "engineering." Hence my comment about it rubbing me [a little bit] the wrong way.
On the other hand, one of the attributes that does make for being considered an LPS car or at least a premium make has to be at least the perception of superior engineering.
Even when I thought less favorably about BMW as a possible choice for my dollars, I always thought they were well engineered.
It would seem to me that there are plenty of 225+ HP engines (or so they are claimed to be) in cars costing 50% less (or more than 50% less) -- putting one of these engines into a 5 series, an E class or an A6 series may provide "bragging rights," but I would assume the engines would be as out of place as hamburger at Morton's.
A Chrysler 300 SRT-8 would be at least $10,000 and perhaps as much as $20,000 less than a BMW 5 series (limiting the 5's to 6 cylinder engines, that is.)
It would seem, then, to me, about as likely that the Chryco car would be competition for the 5 as the G35.
What I really wish, though, is that the companies like Audi, BMW, Infiniti, etc, would unleash their engineering muscle and show us what they can really do (within a given price class.)
The greatest example that comes to mind is the incremental (and almost identical) hp gains that Audi BMW and Mercedes are able to muster.
Do these guys spy on each other, or what? Do the execs and engineers from Audi and BMW all go to dinner together and say "255HP seems to be where we need to be. . .agreed?"
Then they all leave the super secret dinner location separately and give the staff the news: "this year the new BMW 3.0 engine will have 255HP as its stated power. . .make it so;" meanwhile the like team at Audi is being told, "the 5 valve per cylinder 3.0 engine is out, we need a new engine with 255HP. . .make it so."
Or perhaps it is German law -- the German government passes into law bills that proclaim, "in 2005, 256+HP will be taxed at such and such a level which effectively raises the maximum HP to the highest amount in the lowest tax bracket?"
I had to laugh when in the new Automobile Magazine where they had "proof" that German car makers are lemmings. . .they had a picture (left to right) of iDrive, MMI and Command" and the caption was "proof that . . . are lemmings."
Where was I? Oh yea. 525 possibly smart marketing move for many of us (most of us) who do NOT participate here on edmunds. My suspicion that the 525 accomplishes its lower power with the aid of jumper cables remains slightly disconcerting, however.
#5488 of 10339 Re: see a lot of 525's [markcincinnati]
Dec 11, 2005 (9:18 am)
"The thing that kindof rubs me the wrong way is that the 525 and the 530 use "essentially" the same engine"
They finally got smart and started to do what every other auto manufacturer on the face of this planet has been doing for years. Re-purposing their technology.
#5489 of 10339 Re: see a lot of 525's [markcincinnati]
Dec 11, 2005 (11:49 am)
To a certain extent, computers are still built that way. Intel doesnt have 2.8Ghz wafers, 3Ghz wafers, etc. They're all made the same, and the ones that run the best have a $1100/ea price tag. Its still quite simple to make a $200 processor run as fast or faster than the $1000 one with some simple (though warranty voiding) clock adjustments.
#5490 of 10339 Re: see a lot of 525's [dhamilton]
Dec 11, 2005 (1:07 pm)
Saw 2 new M5's at my dealer recently. Was surprised at how incredible the White/Portland Brown combo looked. Odd that the "Build your own" section on BMWUSA.COM will not allow that combo!
Had a Black/Black also... both were simply incredible. Couldn't convince the Sales Mgr to take a drive since they were pre-sold to a couple of fortunate souls
Buddy of mine is a Porsche Driving Instructor who was in town recently to instruct a new Carerra GT owner in the fine art of keeping his investment on the asphault. Said he saw the new M5 on the track and commented positively about its speed, handling and braking capabilities.
Manual 6-speed sounds great for next year, but wonder how many people will burn up clutches with 500+HP in that high-reving V10? Maybe the SMG makes sense??
Dec 11, 2005 (5:36 pm)
A bit off topic, but you've certainly simplified things when it comes to Intel's business. It's true that they make all their wafers with the same "recipe", but normal process variations can result in significant differences in the speed of different wafers. They sort these during test into different speed bins and sell the fastest ones for more $. That makes sense since the yield to get those fastest parts is lower.
OK, back to cars now.
#5492 of 10339 Re: see a lot of 525's [lexusguy]
Dec 11, 2005 (6:56 pm)
My put is that the European model (low displacement) allows the handling (excellent or otherwise) to shine through, while saving fuel. I can't have a diesel on this continent, so the smaller displacement model is the next best thing.
Besides which, it's all relative. The car I'm driving now has 215 hp (I think -- I'm much better at remembering the specs of the cars I'm looking at than at the one I have). That said, the 325 is of equal power with less weight and, well, that BMW thing.
I spend my driving year mostly in commuting traffic, with only a few opportunities to drive at high speed for long distances. Stop-light (red-light, if you're in the South) drag racing isn't much of what helps me choose a car. That's where power shines -- those who value it above all else will pay a fuel premium. I choose otherwise.
Perhaps I'm not worthy, but the 325 has a place on my list -- first.
#5493 of 10339 Something to keep in mind
Dec 12, 2005 (8:49 am)
If you are wanting a car for safety, German cars have generally done quite well. However, Audi's system will not call emergency services when airbags deploy, BMW's will. If Audi goes with Onstar or something, then that point would be moot.
To me, handling, braking, and engine power isn't just about enjoying the drive. It's about getting out of the way or being able to avoid an emergency situation.
#5494 of 10339 Re: BMW is pushing 2 year leases [markcincinnati]
Dec 12, 2005 (12:25 pm)
I just wanted to correct a mistake from my previous post. My loaner car was a wagon - NOT a 530xi sedan.
#5495 of 10339 Re: Something to keep in mind [erickpl]
Dec 12, 2005 (12:42 pm)
My last Audi -- a 2003 -- did have On*star. Audi has, apparently fallen out of love with On*star, it is no longer offered and apparently will not be offered in the future.
I would assume Audi will offer something like BMW assist in the future.
BMW Assist is free for one year, as was On*star. I paid for On*star's "safe and secure plan" which was $16.95 per month plus the cost of any phone minutes I used via On*star (I also had a Verizon "AUDI FACTORY" phone that did not use On*star minutes.)
Our dealer told us we did not need to pay BMW for the BMW assist -- that it could be a la carte. The dealer discouraged us from giving BMW assist our credit card number, suggesting that we could simply pay when and if we used it.
I found this approach refreshing but I wondered what would happen if you have a wreck in the BMW, are knocked out and UNABLE to call (therefore unable to give your cc number to the BMW assist person) -- do they go ahead and call for emergency assistance even though you are a pay as you go user?
Frankly, I wanted On*star and had to order my allroad to get it (and it took 5 months, since On*star equipped vehicles were on "back order" even though the dealer said virtually no one ever ordered it or activated it beyond the free period -- unlike satellite radio), but now, I wouldn't pay $16.95 per month for the "safe and secure" package.
I thought it would be insurance -- and yes I know, since I never used it, I have a different opinion perhaps than if I had needed it and didn't have it. Now, my thoughts are to make sure I have a car that is as crashworthy as possible. There are, today, three Audis that are "silver" rated as being crash worthy -- as I recall, today, there aren't any other LPS cars that made the cut.
Not even a Volvo made it to the list this time around. . . .
Don't know if this is compelling enough to buy a car, though.
Knowing Audi they won't capitalize on it.
And, for the record, I agree "it IS about getting out of the way or being able to avoid an emergency situation. . ." and the German cars certainly are quite capable of accident avoidance, generally speaking.
#5496 of 10339 Re: Something to keep in mind [markcincinnati]
Dec 12, 2005 (10:26 pm)
I noticed that a few Audis just got IIHS "double best picks". Curious, how have Audi's seats rated for whiplash protection? Thats one of the lesser talked about saftey features that pretty much only Volvo and Saab even cared about until very recently.