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Thread: Practical daily: Subaru Legacy BP H6, BMW E91 330i, ?

  1. #21
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    Plus as you mentioned, the owner has always authorised any work required when needed. That would indicate he had deep pockets as I can imagine fixing anything on a Merc wouldn't come cheap.
    A daily to myself and Leon, would mean a Corolla or Yaris or something similar Japanese, boring yes, but you know it's going to start everyday and get you home again.

  2. #22
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    On reflection, I decided that (a) you're both correct, however (b) I'm still damn tempted anyway. It just seems like a really nice car, in the sense of a comfortable and deeply satisfying driving experience, if I could get it and keep it fully working.

    On the warnings front, this guy bought a C55 for 12k, and then spent 15k fixing various issues with it
    https://forums.mbclub.co.uk/threads/...y-list.238190/

    Also when I rang an independent M-B specialist near me for quotes/advice, the woman on the phone basically said, I've got a 2004 C180, it's terrible, one thing after another needs fixing and I've spent so much money on it I can't sell it (!)


    In terms of alternatives, I'm reluctant to buy something slow, as mentioned. One issue with Japanese cars here is that they rust, so they aren't quite as great a long-term low-cost option as they are in Asia-Pacific I think. The IS300 I asked about has had an MoT advisory for rust on both sills, the seller mentioned one side has been patched up. So I'm slightly wary of that. There just aren't many small RWD estates any more, and those that there are are fairly old and high mileage.

    I'm sure the AMG may have all those problems and more, but I guess I feel a bit more prepared to spend money on something with a V8. I mean if Lexus had done a second-gen IS300 SportCross and I could buy a newer one and feel confident nothing would go wrong, I'd probably do so. But nothing I can think of is grabbing me as really super-reliable, which is leaving me tempted by the Merc.

    Anyway, still wracked by indecision, but just to share that I am listening to y'all Current strategy is to see if I can arrange a pre-purchase inspection of this car, and go from there.

  3. #23
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    I may be speaking out of my arse here, but I'm pretty sure that the E91 would be a good combo of reasonably quick (the 320 was actually ok, the 330 will obviously be much faster) and far more reliable than the C Class. Presumably it will have less problems with rust than the Japanese cars (perhaps this is due to owner treatment?) and parts won't be that far off the latter in terms of price and availability. It's also a newer model, I think, than all of the other cars. Plus that bmw straight six, while not the AMG V8, is truly an excellent sounding and revving engine.

  4. #24
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    Yeah, 330i seems like a logical choice, although I'm not as excited by it as the AMG.

    Last night I also realised - the real "second-gen IS300 SportCross" is the RX400h. Practical, quickish (7.3s to 60), loads around from 5kish, and I assume very reliable. It's annoying, I really don't want an SUV, and yet the way the market's gone, there are a million of those and half a dozen estates.
    Last edited by samoht; October 20th, 2020 at 02:41 AM.

  5. #25
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    Because SUVs are just tall estates, and people have decided they want to sit higher to feel special.
    Get that weak shit off my track

  6. #26
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    Given its engine, an AMG C55 is certainly more special. However, he only reason to get it would be for that engine. My personal opinion (again could be talking out of my arse) is that that generation of C-Class is frankly really quite shitty in every possible way, save perhaps for parts being readily available.

    At the same time, it's not like 330i E91s are common. I believe most of the E91s in the UK are 320d to 330d models. 330i estates should be far more rare, and can only become rarer as the years go by. I really think that history will look kindly on a neat 330i estate. You might get a few more enthusiast kudos for maintaining a C55, but you will definitely pay for it.

    It's a pity there was no CLS55 estate, and that a CLS63 estate would clearly be far too expensive to buy and run. Then again, I borrowed my friend's CLS55 for a while and it was a hoot, even though you could actually see the fuel needle move when you floored it.

    You are, I think, right about the RX400h. I don't think it's actually that large in the back, but there are a lot of them around so parts shouldn't be too hard to find.

  7. #27
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    Well, have arranged a pre-purchase inspection of the C55 at a widely recommended Southampton specialist on Monday. So then I'll be able to make a more informed decision.

    So, I respect that it's all a matter of opinion, and I appreciate that you're willing to post differing opinions here - forums can easily fall into groupthink. FWIW, I like the S203 C-Class because
    - I like the looks, it looks sleek and curvy and has a visual lightness of touch that most Mercs don't
    - They're one of the first Mercs with a proper rack and pinion steering, rather than vague recirculating ball - this is when Merc started thinking about handling
    - Build quality, while not the best, apparently took a big step back in the right direction with the 2004 facelift after Merc realised what damage their biodegrading bodywork was doing their brand
    - Driver's seat seemed comfortable, at least on short test drive, can imagine driving long distances

    It's not as good handling as an E46 M3, but as a complement to a sports car it seems pretty decent. I prefer the looks over the E91.

    So I guess in contrast, to me it's a comfortable "luxury" car that's compact yet practical, with RWD, that's then lit up by that engine.

  8. #28
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    Not really sure what's happening in Europe, but in the US, used car market has been heating up due to new car production bottlenecks, and also additional folks who weren't driving before suddenly decided to drive their own car now due to the pandemic...

    So if you've found something you like, better snatch it up quickly! Hope the inspection goes well.

  9. #29
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    Indeed, it's been the same here over the summer. My sister lives in North London, has never kept a car, but now borrowed my parents' Golf because she found the lack of transport rather limiting during the March-May lockdown.

    I think however here that the rise in demand here has mostly been for cars up to ten years old, where non-car-owning people decide they need personal transport. The kind of person who chose not to own a car until now probably doesn't overlap that much with the kind of person who wants a 16 year old car with a 5.4L V8.

    So that did cross my mind, however as far as I can see there's not been significant movement in older enthusiast cars. The dealer's had this car since July, hence being happy to knock a grand off.

  10. #30
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    Alright mate, I hope it goes well in whatever way you'd like. Yes, the looks of the Bangled 3 series can take a bit of getting used to.

    I don't think this forum would descend intok group think as it's quite different from M most other car/Internet forums, but I think I know what you mean!

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