: Time up for my V? Tried a few machines (long)



globed70
01-23-06, 11:51 AM
I’m one of those types that tends to swap cars for something new every 18 to 24 months… known as the ‘sucker’ in the world of depreciation. In any case, I’ve been debating a new car for awhile and remained unconvinced of what I wanted (a first for me, maybe being a family man is getting to me). I’ve owned a variety of cars before the V, including the last M5, a Viper GTS, Porsche 993, and others.

So, I decided to cart the wife and young kids to a few dealers to check out some machines of interest. Strange the way things work in my house, my wife actually wants me to get something more expensive. On the list were Porsche Carrera S, Merc AMG E55, Corvette Convertible, and Porsche Boxster S. I’ve never owned a convertible, nor cared much for them… however now that I live in the Carolinas, perhaps I should try.

The Carrera S (997) was the first up. I’m 6’3” and as mom would say, big boned. The 997 has boat-loads of space for the driver… unlike my previous 993. Heel/toe on the pedals was easy, the engine sounds great. There is something about a 911 that makes even normal speeds feel like a special event. The engine spins up great, there is reasonable torque (not American style, but no longer a dead-spot), handling is predictable, 6-speed is an instrument of precision, and placing the car is spot-on. Another great advantage is that I can fit in with a helmet, and get back to track events with the usually well organized Porsche Club (PCA). Besides the obvious expense (lightly optioned is in the mid $80s), depreciation is now an issue with Porsches. I also golf quite a bit now (also known as morning cocktails with the boys while chasing a small white ball), and ruining the back seat with golf bags won’t help depreciation. On the plus side, I could torture my small children by sticking them back there and hitting the twisties. The car I tried was silver on gray, the paint was outstanding.

The E55 is a disturbingly powerful machine. Most of us know that the E63 is coming out, non-supercharged, similar power (less torque), state-of-the art tranny. Well, the current model is a torque monster…. I’m guessing the earth spins faster with these things around. Having been a Viper guy and used to big-torque, I was still left completely impressed with how easy it is to press the loud-pedal and beat anything from a stop on the street…. There must be a network of computing power to gain traction, which works well. Switch off traction, and spinning tires is all too easy. This car was metallic flint gray, and looked amazing… the interior also looks a lot better than I anticipated, comfort was great. The car just plain looks mean. The disappointment came in a few ways, though. There is little involvement in straight line performance, just press the pedal and flip the bird to everyone behind you… probably fun for a few days – but then again so is lighting fireworks on your neighbor’s lawn. So I hit the curves, and the Merc just isn’t happy there. This particular car had active seats, which grip your sides (or fat) through the curves… I was interested if there was a Thai message parlor under the seat, the salesman couldn’t confirm (I really would have bought right there on the spot). If you like tight curves and winding roads, getting into them, balancing the car, feeling the weight shift… the E55 doesn’t cut it – almost like it’s fighting itself, although high speed curves are great. Another well known issue is reliability, the forums are filled with horror stories; and you need to option it to about $87k to get nav, satellite music, and xenons.

The Corvette Convertible is something I was anticipating. Putting aside whether I liked the car, my wife (and myself to a much lesser extent) don’t really appreciate the reputation of a Corvette… you know, the fat middle-aged guy, hairy chest, gold chains, balding head – or worse, the chain-smoking woman, with bad teeth, big hair, and no shortage of various lifts and tucks. Back to business: I really like this car, and there is good space for the driver, although sightlines were cut-off at the top and understanding the dimensions of the front-end is impossible (another point in favor of the 997, you can’t underestimate your view from the cockpit in going fast). I’ve driven a few in previous generations, and the C6 really has it’s act together. No, it isn’t precise like the Carrera S and you can’t place it in the same way. If you haven’t driven a C6, the V is really a four-door version – really. The interior in this one was gray, I’d stay with black as lighter colors tend to demonstrate a bit of cheapness (although it’s come a long way). I was predetermined to go with silver in a Vette, and thus happy when they pulled a silver vert out for me to try… unfortunately, the paint can’t hold a candle to the luster of a Porsche – win some, lose some. Overall, very impressed… and I might be able to squeeze the clubs in the storage space (will try this weekend). $60k with all the good stuff is a relative bargain (and discounts of $4-5k are now out there).

Then comes the Boxster S. I’ve driven the previous generation, which left me feeling like I’d walked out of an intro-to-yoga class. Fortunately the new model has more space, and the sightlines are good even with the top up. As usual, the Porsche engine sounds great. This is a handling machine, easy to place anywhere on an unknown road with little fear of consequences… which is good, as maintaining speed is important when there is not a lot of power on tap. The power deficit shows little through the winding roads… it’s on the straights that you attempt to press the pedal through the firewall. Even with the extra room, it is still cramped. Power seats let me get the seat bottom pressed against the wall, but left little room for recline – actually forcing me into proper position, but no option to sit back and cruise. My legs were still a bit splayed, something I never liked about my 993 or M5 (E39). Like the Vette, I have a slight concern (not shared with my wife) with reputation, in that I’ve always viewed the Boxster as a bit of a girl’s car…. you know, not a real Porsche – if you can’t handle a real one, this is what you get. Shame, as it really is a blast in the twisties… perhaps even more satisfying than the Vette, as you really can’t tap all the power on unknown roads. Just the same, I like the option of pushing the loud pedal and holding on, and this doesn’t do that. On the plus side, the paint is amazing… how do they do that? About $60k get’s you into the car, of course lightly optioned (selecting nav or anything normal is an ankle-grabbing experience).

On the way home, we stopped by the BMW dealer to help a friend pick out a car. Unfortunately, they had a new M5 sitting on the floor. My wife always loved my M5, and although she was sold on that classy E55…. She now wanted me to consider the new beast. This one was in white, which did it no favors. The interior was really nice, although I prefer the simplicity of the E55. I’m also predisposed to hate lots of switches, modes, and complexity. A great love of mine is jumping in a car and feeling connected after a short drive… SMG, iDrive, power-boost buttons, and dozens of modes just isn’t for me. I also love mastery of a manual tranny, granted I’ve only tried SMG on a few M3s. No test drives allowed in the M5 for now. The really twilight zone event occurs when you look at the M5 lease… they are showing a 74% residual after 2 years and a reasonable money factor… for the time being, this $90s car may be a relative bargain! Even that may not be able to overcome my distaste for complicated gadgetry.

I still haven’t made up my mind, which speaks volumes about how much I like the V. The dealers have my number, we’ll see if someone puts together a great deal, all except the M5 are available with discounts. I like the 997S for how special it drives and the fact that it will get me back on the track with ease; the Convertible Vette because I really do like the American way of delivering excitement; the wife likes the E55 (enough reason not to go for it), although she views the Boxster S as the lesser evil in comparison to the Vette.

Hope all of this is of interest to someone.

Kadonny
01-23-06, 12:24 PM
Don't you just love to car shop? I do, especially when you are shopping the cars that you have listed.

My opinion? The Boxster is out of the question. If you do Porsche, make sure you go with the 997.

Other than that, the rest of your choices are great. Thought about the Z06? But with kids, I think you are almost saying a 2 seater is out of the question.

I say do the M5, you will not be sorry. The only thing I dont like about them is the rear fascia. The twin pipes to me look almost "ricey". But all in all, I dont think that really matters. Each time you start that car, you will grin ear to ear. I personally love the SMG transmission and think it is the up and coming thing with all car manufacturers.

But of course it is your decision to make. Another V is out of the question I guess?

Mutlu
01-23-06, 12:40 PM
I have the same issue.

Looking for something different but when looking around can't find anything that I like.

New M5: BMW is notorious for having problems with their M cars in the first year of production, even first two years...had a 2002 M3 and it was the second year of production with a whole bunch of problems.
E55: Automatic...more lux than sport.
SRT8: feel like I am downgrading....and it's an automatic
Audi: RS4....backseats too tiny and it doesn't look all that different than an A4
Porsche: Had nothing but problems with them both the 996 and the Boxster I owned.

Nothing else out there right now which makes it difficult for me. I also only drive cars 12-18months but might hold on to the V til fall to see what else is coming out. Hopefully she'll hold together until then.

Joey'sVee
01-23-06, 12:50 PM
Personally the Boxer is the odd man out in this comparison. It is really more comparable to the Z3 or S2000. Sure it's a Porche, but barely.

I don't understand why you are considering the E55 or M5 but not the Z06 Corvette. The convertable is nice, but if you are willing to drop $90K let's at least consider a car to really get in trouble with. Besides, it would be more of a match to the Cararra S.

If the back seat is an issue then don't even compare the Convertible C6. If it's not an issue then try the Z06.

Personaly I would go with the M5.

CRZY747
01-23-06, 02:28 PM
Wow, very nice selection of cars. Sure hope you lease cars if you only keep them 18-24 months. Consider with some basic math I come up with.

Lets see here basic, is 10yrs/2=5 total cars in that time. The average say 20K ever two years depreciation. Which would be more if your considering 80-90K car. The math in my equasion means that in 5yrs*20 depreciation loss on the 5 cars you own will equal 100K. Dam that is a nice chunk of change to drive cars around, just crazy. But hey if you lease a car it isn't so bad in your situation, as long as you dont drive a lot, but what fun is that. I like to keep my cars at least min 4yrs, and buy used 1-2yr old car as to not take the hit on the car. But if you have money to waste like that, just awesome. Wish I did, but would rather invest that money even if I did.

My choice is also not on the list, as in the only car out there that is worth getting rid of the V for is the new Z06 vette. IMHO

Just was thinking this over lunch, and was thinking how much we all complain on how this car lost money, imagine what a 90K car looses in 2yrs. A TON

Vrad
01-23-06, 03:02 PM
Not that it was mentioned, but did you happen upon the new Cayman S in the Porsche showroom? It's above the Boxter S and more closely a match for the big brother......just a thought...

globed70
01-23-06, 03:23 PM
Wow, I wasn't sure anyone would read the long story, let alone offer advice. The fact of the matter is that I don't need 4 seats... the children are almost never in my car. I don't mind having a sedan, as it usually means lot's of room for golf clubs and so on. The Z06 is interesting... to be honest, I really like the look of the convertible vette, always preferred it to the coupe. I'm getting sick of taking cars at MSRP, and between that and the lousy residual, I'd get hosed on a Z06 anytime in the near future. For that, I'd go with the lesser performing Carerra S and hit the track (I don't fit into a vette with helmet). In terms of getting in trouble, I did have a slightly-modded Viper GTS for 15k miles (half in Europe), but it is so damn difficult to find a place to let that kind of power out of a light car. The Boxster only crossed my mind because it is a fantastic handling convertible, with performance about equal with my previous 993... but I agree with all of your comments on it.

I also agree that swapping into a new car every 2 years is a complete waste of money. The smart ones buy'em at 18-24 months old, find cheap money (home equity, whatever), and are all the better for it. Some of us are infintile, and have no patience, others are neurotic about the 'unknown' history of the car.

CRZY747
01-23-06, 03:33 PM
Wow, I wasn't sure anyone would read the long story, let alone offer advice. The fact of the matter is that I don't need 4 seats... the children are almost never in my car. I don't mind having a sedan, as it usually means lot's of room for golf clubs and so on. The Z06 is interesting... to be honest, I really like the look of the convertible vette, always preferred it to the coupe. I'm getting sick of taking cars at MSRP, and between that and the lousy residual, I'd get hosed on a Z06 anytime in the near future. For that, I'd go with the lesser performing Carerra S and hit the track (I don't fit into a vette with helmet). In terms of getting in trouble, I did have a slightly-modded Viper GTS for 15k miles (half in Europe), but it is so damn difficult to find a place to let that kind of power out of a light car. The Boxster only crossed my mind because it is a fantastic handling convertible, with performance about equal with my previous 993... but I agree with all of your comments on it.

I also agree that swapping into a new car every 2 years is a complete waste of money. The smart ones buy'em at 18-24 months old, find cheap money (home equity, whatever), and are all the better for it. Some of us are infintile, and have no patience, others are neurotic about the 'unknown' history of the car.

Glad you didn't think that was a flame, just was my opinion. As for the Z06, if you can get into the convertible, you will love the C6 ZO6. Go to the vette forums and find one used unless your neurotic about that kind of stuff, and find one cheaper. I would do that.

Dreamin
01-23-06, 05:05 PM
Great writeup!

IMHO:

You wont be happy with the Boxster... considering the cars you've owned the lack of power will become intolerable in about 2 weeks.
You wont be happy with the E55, because as you have already concluded, the lack of handling and road feel..

Stick with the V for 4-6months and pick up a C6 Z06 for a little under MSRP... and think absolute dollars, not "MSRP"... you are arguably getting a Supercar for $65K.

My 'dream-car' used to be a F360 (dream car in that i could get one without getting a divorce)... no longer... I never thought I'd want a Vette over a Ferrari...

heavymetals
01-23-06, 05:15 PM
Put a maggie on the V and then rethink what you want.

The ansewer may suprise you.:canttalk:

Joey'sVee
01-23-06, 05:28 PM
Put a maggie on the V and then rethink what you want.

The ansewer may suprise you.:canttalk:

The answer will be... too many blown diffs. Plus, how much faster will it make the 1/4s?

If I didn't need a back seat the Z06 would be my choice of the listed cars. If I needed a back seat the M5 would do it. :thumbsup:

heavymetals
01-23-06, 05:55 PM
I haven't blown a diff yet.
The first one was cracked and leaked.
Speak for yourself.:thepan:

Also, I didn't buy the car for the 1/4 mile times.

It is my daily driver.

Mr.Vette guards the garage.

c4racer
01-23-06, 08:06 PM
I have been guilty of trading cars sooner than I should too - I always tend to either find something I'd rather have, or get tired of something, or something else in my stable changes so I need a different type of car.

My daily drivers over the past 5 years have been:
'98 M3, kept 2.5 years and sold to a friend for $6K less than I paid for it, and I added about $3K in stereo and other mods, so call it $9K lost, $3.5K / year which isn't bad at all. Car was 3 years old w/ 25K miles on it when I bought it from the original owner.

'00 M5 - kept for only one year. Took the big hit on that one, $9.5K. Ouch. But it was a fabulous car to own for 1 year and I put about 11K miles on it. CPO car purchased from dealer - off lease and also 3 years old when I bought it.

'04 Z06 - bought new just as the 06's started to roll in. Sold it 1 year and 6K miles later for $1K less than I paid for it. :-) No complaints there. Sold it because I just wasn't driving it much - seems I either needed a back seat for kids or co-workers or customers (in oustide sales in tech industry) or I needed to have my bike with me, or it was raining. So instead I piled up 18K miles on the SUV and the Z06 guarded the garage mostly.

So I sold it and leased the V last year. Great car. Love it. I've been thinking what I would even replace it with and can't come up with any reasonable answers that would not cost more money. M5 would be nice, but that or even an M3 would cost more. S4 would be about even, but back seat is cramped and steering is overboosted and not great feel, also throttle is a bit touchy. Otherwise a pretty good car, but the back seat size kinda killed it for me. Used S6 might be interesting, but owning an S class Audi past it's warrantee period seems like too much of a potential high $$ gamble to me, and likely will see some serious depreciation even after the first 3 years - like buy a 2003 this year for $35K and I bet is only worth $20K in 2 years once the warrantee is fully gone. The Dodge's don't interest me at all - too heavy, not drivers cars either, very poor feedback. Can't think of what I would even do, a 550i maybe - lease cost would be similar to a V with the good residual and MF on those. But still loses to a V in handling, braking, although I expect accelleration would be pretty close now they are up to almost 370 ponies - BMW's always seem to run some good numbers for the power they have, maybe under-rated a bit and very efficient drivetrains with well matched gearing.

Well - I'm keeping the V. But I haven't had it as long as you, so you never know my mood in another year or so. But lease is the way to go. You don't tie up a bunch of cash in the car - think about it, if you buy a $90K M5 and keep it for 2 years you are losing at least 5% on that money per year, so that is close to $10K lost right there. Then if you pay state sales tax on the car you lose that too, here in CA that would be $7.5K. Then you lose the depreciation on the car, figure about $25K if BMW has done their homework on residuals. Good chance it will lose even more than they think, maybe closer to $28K. Add all that up it's close to $45K. If BMW is giving good lease rates the lease cost will be somewhere between $30-35K total for 2 years. Making that a "no-brainer" as they say :-)

Comparing BMW to MBZ on lease residuals is also interesting - BMW is normally around 60-62% on a 3yr / 36K lease where MBZ is more like 56-58%. 3% on a $90K car means more than $3K more cost for the MBZ once you factor in interest too.

CVP33
01-23-06, 08:06 PM
Great write ups on each car. Others that I've considered:

XJR - Equally as fast. Interior is a little dated when compared to others. I too wonder what a Jaguar says about the owner.

XKR - Poor man's DB9 but then you have to ask yourself why didn't I just get the Vette? Certainly you don't plan on using the rear seats of the XKR?

Cayman S - Priced like a Vette only slower. Can't really justify it.

SRT-8 - Love the performance. Like the interior hate that it handles more like a Mercedes.

Infinty M45 - Not quite fast enough. But wins every other argument I could ever raise against it.

Closer_2001
01-24-06, 12:35 AM
I they are showing a 74% residual after 2 years and a reasonable money factor… f

Obviously you are a man of means compared to myself...

But, just curious what the MF or payments were on that... ?

Joey'sVee
01-24-06, 01:48 AM
I haven't blown a diff yet.
The first one was cracked and leaked.
Speak for yourself.:thepan:

Also, I didn't buy the car for the 1/4 mile times.

It is my daily driver.

Mr.Vette guards the garage.

Your telling him to add the maggie then compare...I'm guessing you added the maggie to go faster not necessarily 1/4 mile times. The same holds true...adding a maggie even though you don't do smokey burnouts will increase the likelihood of replacing the diff.

I was speaking for myself. The reason I don't have a maggie is because I don't need to increase the likelihood of my diff failing. I wasn't talking about your diff. :thepan:

heavymetals
01-24-06, 02:27 AM
I would like to see you back that up with some #s.

I see no corelation between having a maggie and rear end failures.

The rear ends fail regardless.

The maggied cars didn't fail any more rear ends.

As a matter of fact it is the opposite.

The N/A's had more repeat failure rates of the rear end then the S/C's.

Get your facts right.

Katshot
01-24-06, 08:53 AM
I would think it's reasonable to assume that increasing power output will increase the stress placed on all drivetrain components and therefore increase the likelihood of component failure.

Joey'sVee
01-24-06, 09:36 AM
I would like to see you back that up with some #s.

I see no corelation between having a maggie and rear end failures.

The rear ends fail regardless.

The maggied cars didn't fail any more rear ends.

As a matter of fact it is the opposite.

The N/A's had more repeat failure rates of the rear end then the S/C's.

Get your facts right.

Well I don't have numbers (where's yours?) but I would think more HP would increase the liklihood of diff failures but maybe I'm wrong...maybe the answer to the diff problems is to try to increase HP :hmm:

Devil_concours
01-24-06, 09:51 AM
you forgot one car in your price category. C6 Z06. With cam and header i saw one dyno at 554rwhp

MikeyVSeries
01-24-06, 10:57 AM
c6 z06 smokes them all... i personally think its 1 of the best cars out period..

wildwhl
01-24-06, 11:02 AM
Heavy/Joey -

Enough with the thread jack - we all know the diffs are weak at times and I don't know of any failing with a maggie on board - but that doesn't mean it hasn't/won't happen.

The writeup is great. Isn't car shopping a blast :yup:

I vote the Z06 but if you don't fit with a helmet - then the 997 it is. Personally, I'd keep the V and Maggie it - oh - I already did :lildevil:

Just my .02 that you never asked for in the first place.

heavymetals
01-24-06, 01:35 PM
Heavy/Joey -

Enough with the thread jack - we all know the diffs are weak at times and I don't know of any failing with a maggie on board - but that doesn't mean it hasn't/won't happen.

The writeup is great. Isn't car shopping a blast :yup:

I vote the Z06 but if you don't fit with a helmet - then the 997 it is. Personally, I'd keep the V and Maggie it - oh - I already did :lildevil:

Just my .02 that you never asked for in the first place.

I culled the data from this:

http://www.cadillacforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=50743&page=3&highlight=diff+failure+poll

Like I said , GET YOUR FACTS together.

The maggie did not contribute to any more rear end failures then the N/A's experienced.

This response was to Joey not WW.

Joey'sVee
01-24-06, 02:59 PM
I culled the data from this:

http://www.cadillacforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=50743&page=3&highlight=diff+failure+poll

Like I said , GET YOUR FACTS together.

The maggie did not contribute to any more rear end failures then the N/A's experienced.

This response was to Joey not WW.

Dude...read my previous post again....I HAVE NO F*CKING FACTS JUST A MECHANICAL ENGINEERING DEGREE & I would guess (meaning I haven't surveyed every V owner) more HP would increase the likelihood of more diff failures (This is common sense!). I'm not saying the maggie does increase the likelihood I'm just saying I would GUESS they do.

That's all I'm saying. That post you link does not say a maggie cuts down on the likelihood of diff failures. You believe what you want and I will to...I don't want to get into an argument about this and I think we have thread jacked enough.

Globed70....sorry we thread jacked your post.

heavymetals
01-24-06, 03:11 PM
Hey "Dude".

Just because you have a degree doesn't make you an expert, and especially when you operate with no data to back it up (something a real engineer would not do).

I can see it is POINTLESS to present FACTS to you.

Joey'sVee
01-24-06, 03:17 PM
Never said I was an expert just making an educational guess...

Katshot
01-24-06, 03:48 PM
Joey & Heavy,
This IS getting a little senseless. Personally, I agree with Joey but it looks like Heavy isn't listening so unless we want this thread to turn into a flame war, I suggest that we call it quits.
On a personal note, Heavy, just because no hard data exists, it's still certainly sensible to make reasonable assumptions based on common sense mechanical theory, and that's what I believe Joey's doing.

globed70
01-25-06, 12:50 AM
Gents,

Many thanks for your opinions. I'm leaning towards a Convertible Vette, never had a ragtop... I guess if it isn't really that great, someone will get a great deal from this sucker again. It's really come down to that and the M5... for those interested, BMW Finance is showing a 2-year residual (10k miles/yr) of 74% and a money factor of .00285.

If I do make a move, there will be a one-owner, full service history, unblemished 2004 CTS-V black/black with roof for sale, 13.7k miles.

Thanks again, Dan

wildwhl
01-25-06, 01:07 AM
Good luck, Dan.

Sorry to thread jack a little further - but having never leased a vecicle the money facter, etc., means nothing to me. Sure, I could search and learn - but what does this really mean?

Thanks,

WW

globed70
01-25-06, 11:05 AM
Good luck, Dan.

Sorry to thread jack a little further - but having never leased a vecicle the money facter, etc., means nothing to me. Sure, I could search and learn - but what does this really mean?

Thanks,

WW

The verbage is confusing, and deliberately so. Without all the moving parts, the market would become far more efficient and the dealers/lease companies wouldn't make much money.

Residual = the depreciated value of the vehicle for a period of time, presented as % of MSRP. Based on anticipated mileage.
Capitalized Cost = the amount being financed in the lease, effectively the price of the car.
Money Factor = related to cost of borrowing funds, multiply by 2400 to get something almost equivalent to interest rate.

These are the 3 variables which determine whether a lease is a good deal. Two vehicles with a similar price can have very different leases... particularly when residual comes into play. A few years back, most of the german brands had a much higher residual than american brands, thus a far more expensive car could cost only a bit more than a domestic model (in terms of lease payments; as well as total cost of ownership if you bought and sold).

So, if BMW shows a 74% residual on a $85k car after two years and Porsche shows a 68% residual on a similar price car, then the Porsche lease will cost $5k more over it's life, or $200 more per month. That assumes the money factors are the same, which they may or may not be. The capitalized cost must be negotiated first, as that is the sales price from the dealer (whether it's you buying or a lease company). Next comes the combination of residual and money factor... dealer profits on leasing come in the form of a 'spread' on the money factor.

At the end of the day, it comes down to total cost of ownership and financial risk. Check out some sites like leasecompare.com to learn more.

Katshot
01-25-06, 12:54 PM
Residual is usually what makes or breaks the vehicle's viability as a lease vehicle IMO. Yeah, interest rates, fees, and the like DO have an effect but I think the Residual is what kills the lease or not. Unfortunately, the OEMs know all to well how to manipulate the sales of their vehicles via setting unrealistic residuals (Ford Expedition ring a bell?). The problem is that can come back to bite them on the butt as those vehicles start coming in off lease.

chesrowncadillac
01-25-06, 02:19 PM
Don't forget the STS-V 70% residual at 24 mos 10k a year plus 3.95%apr and $1250.00 lease cash.
Thanks
David
PS: That is assuming you can find one. A little scarce now. We have been offered MSRP from other dealers- I would not do it sold it to a retail customer.

b4z
01-26-06, 05:46 PM
This was really a great write up of your car shopping trip.
Don't know why people felt the need to thread-jack it.

You made some very salient points about the cars you drove.
Most car mags won't. I have heard several people say that the MB cars just don't handle well. Your points about reliability were also well taken.

People often ask me why I continue to buy GM products.
Kind of like the devil you know vs. the one you don't.
Recently went shopping at an Audi store. Sales people looked down on my SRX. IToldme I needed to buy something better. I find it laughable that an Audi sales person would look down on my uber reliable Cadillac.

I guess even with the CTS-Vs driveline probs it is a hard car to beat for $50K.
I am not convinced that the competition is any better.

Thanks for the write-up.