The Luxury Vehicle Discussion Thread (Especially the German ones)

Dennis Nicholls

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I owned a used 986 Porsche Boxster for 5 years, and it gave me no trouble. But I bought it at 50K miles and sold it a little over 60K miles. To put it in perspective, I bought it when it was 13 years old and sold it when it was 18 years old. I did some preemptive maintenance, changing the rubber coolant hoses and IMSB. From years of hanging around Porsche forums, I get the feeling that Porsche is the one German brand that doesn't break down all the time. You might keep the Panamera on your list.

BMW - Bring My Wallet!
 
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Ronald Epstein

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I owned a used 986 Porsche Boxster for 5 years, and it gave me no trouble. But I bought it at 50K miles and sold it a little over 60K miles. To put it in perspective, I bought it when it was 13 years old and sold it when it was 18 years old. I did some preemptive maintenance, changing the rubber coolant hoses and IMSB. From years of hanging around Porsche forums, I get the feeling that Porsche is the one German brand that doesn't break down all the time. You might keep the Panamera on your list.

BMW - Bring My Wallet!

Dennis,

In my research, I saw a lot of car mechanics talk about the Boxter. They all said it was a very reliable car. I will have to take a look at the Panamera.
 

Walter Kittel

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FWIW, a good friend of mine took delivery of a fully loaded Tesla Model 3 (with all of the performance options) earlier this year (before COVID-19 had emerged as an aspect of everyone's lives here in America and around the world.) I swear it was like someone from ten years in the future came to 2020 and brought along their car. :) I am certainly not the most knowledgeable person when it comes to the luxury market (it has always been a market out of my justifiable price range) and I would agree that the Model 3 doesn't scream luxury; but the fit and finish was top notch and the tech in the car is pretty amazing. My friend gets regular software updates to the vehicle and some of the driving assist features are like magic (as in any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic).

While the car is too heavy to be really nimble in the way lighter, sportier cars mange, it does handle smoothly and is very responsive to driver input. The big performance draw is the incredible acceleration, both from a full stop and while driving. We took his car for a test drive on some rural farm to market roads near his house (I was driving :) ) and I went from 50 MPH to around 100 MPH in the blink of an eye while passing a slow truck that was in front of us. Not quite instantaneous, but close enough. :) Driving in a vehicle that is whisper quiet is an interesting experience, as well. You don't realize just how fast you are going without the normal audible cues that you get from a traditional internal combustion style vehicle. Overall, the lack of engine noise adds to the 'smoothness' of driving the vehicle. Like I said, it felt like a car from the future.

Anyway, just some food for thought.

- Walter.
 
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Ronald Epstein

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Walter,

I have looked at Tesla. They come with rave reviews. My issue with them is that (without sitting in one myself) I have read they aren't as comfortable as the luxury vehicles. While they excel in some areas of tech, there doesn't seem to be enough of it.

The question I have is the Tesla all battery? That's something I don't want. If I go visit my brother who is 500 miles south of me, the car can't make the journey without a charge.

When the time comes, I'll visit a Tesla showroom and test drive one. There aren't any showrooms near me. Closest is an hour away which certainly isn't convenient for servicing.
 

Francois Caron

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Another problem with Tesla is that the company has full control over the car even after you've paid it off in full. They can summarily disable your vehicle remotely for any reason whatsoever, and you have absolutely no recourse.

I unintentionally rented a BMW X5 SUV in June to head off to another town and finalise my purchase of a Fiat 500 Abarth. It was the only car the rental place had with satellite radio. They charged me the cheap rate.

The most noticeable problem was the leather seats. It was as if I was sitting on concrete! And then there's the non-standard controls that made even finding the cruise control a bit difficult. Then there's the multitude of safety monitors that kept beeping incessantly even when there was no one next to me or when I was required to straddle the line.

The worst part is that the satellite radio never worked even after calling the rental place and asking them to resend the activation code. I saw the update message on the screen, but it was still stuck on the Barker channel!

This was definitely not luxury.
 
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Walter Kittel

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Ron,

I've been in my friends Tesla Model 3 two times. Once in the driver's seat during my test drive as posted above and a few months later in the rear as a passenger with my friend and his son. The seats were comfortable enough for me, but I have no idea how they would compare to the luxury brands. (Maybe a little firmer?) I think that is a pretty subjective area and each individual will have to make their own determination.

Regarding a 500 mile trip; I believe the maximum range (with the Long Range option) of a Tesla is around 320 miles. You'd have to stop for a meal somewhere along the way at an establishment that has chargers and let the vehicle quick charge for around an hour. You'd have to charge it once again at your brothers home (or city) and repeat the meal break mid journey on the way home. So not the optimum situation.

WIth any luck you wouldn't need a lot of servicing on a Tesla, as compared to a gasoline powered vehicle.


I have no information regarding Tesla disabling vehicles; they might disable a software function if it is found to create problems, but I would imagine that entirely disabling a vehicle would not be the best PR and wouldn't win them any customers. At least that seems pretty logical to me.

- Walter.
 

Scott Merryfield

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The question I have is the Tesla all battery? That's something I don't want. If I go visit my brother who is 500 miles south of me, the car can't make the journey without a charge.
Ron,

This is something I wanted to mention from an earlier post you made where you said you would not be driving as much since you are now retired. I wouldn't just make that assumption. Your driving habits will definitely change, but your miles driven may end up being more than you expect.

I have been retired for over 3 years now. My daily commute was either 35 miles round trip or about 70 miles round trip, depending on which office I was heading to that day. I would put about 12,000 miles a year on my vehicle. Compare that with my 2018 GMC Acadia, which I have owned for about 27 months now -- I have put about 28,500 miles on it during that time, which is at that same 1,000 per month rate. We are taking more driving trips now that I am retired, when we tended to fly more while I was working. We've owned a condo in South Carolina for 23 years, and we always flew there when I was working for week-long trips. Now we drive and stay 2-3 weeks, and I put between 2,100 and 2,500 miles on the car each time. We've also taken long road trips to Maine and northern Minnesota.
 

Francois Caron

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I have no information regarding Tesla disabling vehicles; they might disable a software function if it is found to create problems, but I would imagine that entirely disabling a vehicle would not be the best PR and wouldn't win them any customers. At least that seems pretty logical to me.
Tesla's already in trouble for disabling critical features that have stranded at least one family. And there are more mentions in the comments of the same thing happening to other Tesla "owners."

 
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Ronald Epstein

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Ron,

This is something I wanted to mention from an earlier post you made where you said you would not be driving as much since you are now retired. I wouldn't just make that assumption. Your driving habits will definitely change, but your miles driven may end up being more than you expect.

I have been retired for over 3 years now. My daily commute was either 35 miles round trip or about 70 miles round trip, depending on which office I was heading to that day. I would put about 12,000 miles a year on my vehicle. Compare that with my 2018 GMC Acadia, which I have owned for about 27 months now -- I have put about 28,500 miles on it during that time, which is at that same 1,000 per month rate. We are taking more driving trips now that I am retired, when we tended to fly more while I was working. We've owned a condo in South Carolina for 23 years, and we always flew there when I was working for week-long trips. Now we drive and stay 2-3 weeks, and I put between 2,100 and 2,500 miles on the car each time. We've also taken long road trips to Maine and northern Minnesota.
You are probably right. I have been mostly homebound since the pandemic but I could see doing a bit of traveling now that I am retired.

Here's a look at the Genesis GV80 which looks like a very tempting SUV if I go that route.

No doubt, Genesis has moved to the top of my consideration list.

 

Ronald Epstein

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The more I look at the GENESIS brand the more intrigued I become.

The most exciting thing about shopping for this car is that there is no haggling. The price you see is the price you pay and it comes all-inclusive.

There really aren't any dealerships. When you test drive a car they actually arrange to meet and drop off a vehicle for you.

Additionally, you get a 5-year Valet service where any work that needs to be done on your vehicle, someone comes to you to pick up your car and drop off a loaner.

These cars are highly, highly rated for dependability from what I have been able to read thus far. They are getting accolades in overall car reliability.

I have spent quite a few hours watching every video review I can get my hands on and quite frankly, I'm no longer google-eyed over a BMW or MERCEDES. And when it comes to a LEXUS, the Genesis blows that uninspiring brand out of the water.

I still have almost two years until my current Lincoln lease expires, but if the company stays on its current track, I think is going to be the vehicle I will purchase.

Thanks for opening my eyes!

 

Nelson Au

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Hey John-

Skyline Blvd in the Oakland Hills? That was my stomping ground for many years. I worked at the Oakland Naval Hospital back then, before it was closed. Of course that was long before I could afford anything worth taking on a scenic drive. :)
The Skyline I’m referring to is west of Highway 280 along the Peninsula. I jumped onto this particular section via Highway 9 from Saratoga. Driving up Highway 9 from Saratoga was so much fun! I turned off into Skyline and headed north for a short distance to my destination. I was doing a house tour going to 5 different modern homes open on a tour. That was a fun house too, nice location.

Yee-Ming, that’s really cool your wife has an e90 M3! I’d pondered trying to find one of those, but the timing wasn’t right. But I’m happy I’m still with the e46. And it’s cool you’re keeping your e90 too. You bring up something that Ron should know. The oil usage is something known for a lot of German cars. When I am doing my commute to work daily, after about 1500-2000 miles, I add about 3/4 quarts of oil. I think I’m lucky in that I’m not using as much as I’ve heard others are. And the engine is high on miles too.

The issue as I understand it is that they burn some oil. My car doesn’t smoke and the tail pipe is clean. It occurs on Mercedes, Audi and BMW. Not sure about Porsche. This is normal and I’ve read other owners were told by BMW this is normal.

Ron, it seems you have a lot of time to do more research on what car you want. Don’t give up on BMW or Mercedes if it is your dream car. The BMW was a car I wanted to get ever since I saw a mid 1970’s BMW that one of the teachers drove in High School.
 

John Dirk

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The Skyline I’m referring to is west of Highway 280 along the Peninsula.
That makes better sense. I was wondering why you said it was the South Bay instead of East Bay. I really miss the Bay Area of the 80's but, like everywhere else, it's so crowded now. Not the same.
 

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