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      11-18-2005, 08:20 PM   #1
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Yet, another 330i vs IS350 publication/review.... from Detroit News

The Detroit News:

http://www.detnews.com/2005/autoscon...F01-383250.htm
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      11-18-2005, 08:24 PM   #2
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We've driven two great cars, but must declare only one winner: The BMW 330i.
The IS 350 is truly a pleasure to drive, and substantially better in nearly every way -- looks, comfort, performance -- than the old IS 300. But it lacks one critical attribute, that intangible something: Call it history or charisma that is summed up in the familiar blue-and-white BMW badge.
Althugh the new 330i is not perfect, it remains the benchmark by which all competitors, including Lexus, must be measured.
Overall Winner: BMW 330i
All future Lexus thread starters can just refer to this^^^^.
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      11-18-2005, 08:25 PM   #3
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Thanks for the link. I've still yet to read any publication review naming the IS as the winner over the E90.

My favorite line from the article - the e90 "remains the benchmark by which all competitors, including Lexus, must be measured".

Gonna add this one to the magazines review thread.
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      11-18-2005, 08:38 PM   #4
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To be fair, not everything in the article is correct. IS has adaptive lights and rain sensing wipers too.

But,... I love my 330i and that all I care
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      11-19-2005, 01:37 AM   #5
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In Quebec, both of the most popular Auto yearly review book have stated the E90 as better all-around than the Lexus (in fact than all others). Sure, they all complain about the price and the list of options (personally don't agree with that last one) but still the fun factor wins it all the time.
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      11-19-2005, 04:43 PM   #6
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Inside, the 330i is warmer with wood, metal trim. Lexus' 350IS cockpit is cold and Teutonic in appearance.
That's for all the people saying that the lexus interior is better.
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      11-19-2005, 11:28 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Papa13
That's for all the people saying that the lexus interior is better.
OMFG FINALLY!!!

I always thought the new IS's interior looked too plain but nobody agreed.
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      11-20-2005, 12:49 AM   #8
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The writer needs to learn what a paragraph is.
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      11-20-2005, 09:50 AM   #9
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Why does BMW need to release the 335i (and the diesels) ?

"No question, the IS is the hands-down winner, with a brand-new DOHC 3.5-liter V-6 that delivers a lusty 306 horsepower and 277 pounds-feet of torque to the rear wheels through a six-speed Tiptronic-style gearbox.

The Lexus is quick and powerful, and easily outguns the 330i. The BMW is fitted with a familiar twin-cam 3.0-liter inline six that makes 255 horsepower and 220 pounds-feet of torque. The BMW's acceleration is sporting, if not quite break-neck... there is no substitute for power -- and the IS dominates. "
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      11-20-2005, 11:30 AM   #10
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It is interesting to me that so many magazines are currently comparing the little Lexus with the three series as they are very different cars. The car that most nearly competes with the 3-Series BMW in things that matter to most BMW intenders is the Infinity G-35. I guess the fact that the G35 is about four yeasr old is the reason it gets so little ink now days. I think that BMW had better watch out when the next generation G35 is introduced!
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      11-20-2005, 12:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ben1364
It is interesting to me that so many magazines are currently comparing the little Lexus with the three series as they are very different cars. The car that most nearly competes with the 3-Series BMW in things that matter to most BMW intenders is the Infinity G-35. I guess the fact that the G35 is about four yeasr old is the reason it gets so little ink now days. I think that BMW had better watch out when the next generation G35 is introduced!
True the next G-35 might be a great car, but I would never plop down the amount of money for a Nissan in a Tuxedo.
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      11-20-2005, 06:38 PM   #12
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siriusinvestor wrote, "True the next G-35 might be a great car, but I would never plop down the amount of money for a Nissan in a Tuxedo."
Other than the supurb engine, I don't think the G35 shares very many parts with Nissan vehicles offered in the U S. Do you? The
Altima and Maxima are both front-drive cars while the G35 is rwd. I don't think it accurate to accuse Nissan Motors of badge engineering in this instance at least.
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      11-20-2005, 07:03 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ben1364
siriusinvestor wrote, "True the next G-35 might be a great car, but I would never plop down the amount of money for a Nissan in a Tuxedo."
Other than the supurb engine, I don't think the G35 shares very many parts with Nissan vehicles offered in the U S. Do you? The
Altima and Maxima are both front-drive cars while the G35 is rwd. I don't think it accurate to accuse Nissan Motors of badge engineering in this instance at least.
So you wouldn't think if volkswagon took the Lamborgini Gallardo V10 and slapped a VW badge on it, it wouldnt be accurate that the name brand is being cheapended? What I should have said in the first post is that if I was considering purchasing the G35, I would have just purchased the Nissan Maxima since it's the exact same engine. But hey if you want distinguish there is a major difference between the Nissan Maxima and G35 then do so. In my opinion I everytime I see a lexus I think toyota, and infiniti I think nissan. All in my opinion, if I offended your love for the G35 then I apologize.
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      11-20-2005, 07:10 PM   #14
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In my opinion I everytime I see a lexus I think toyota, and infiniti I think nissan. All in my opinion, if I offended your love for the G35 then I apologize.
OMG I LOVE IT...

Except if I offen your love of the G35 i DON'T apologize!! haha

NISSAN = Infinity

Toyota = Lexus

Honda = Acura

That is just how it is.. Sorry
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      11-20-2005, 07:18 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Papa13
OMG I LOVE IT...

Except if I offen your love of the G35 i DON'T apologize!! haha

NISSAN = Infinity

Toyota = Lexus

Honda = Acura

That is just how it is.. Sorry

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      11-20-2005, 08:53 PM   #16
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The G35 shares most of its underpinnings and chassis engineering with the 350Z. Its not a bad car, but still, lacks that BMW spark.
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      11-20-2005, 09:10 PM   #17
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I've seriously considered G35. It is hell of the car for fun friving, but interior is pukeable. Bimmer just fits me better without "oh my gosh, it's BMW" BS many people up to.
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      11-21-2005, 09:59 AM   #18
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To me, the Lexus' interior looks like an MB of yesteryear.

I liked the Sonata comment, I must admit I have seen a few Sonatas in that Beige colour that most Lexus seem to come in and thought - there is a new IS, but then seen the melted "H" badge

I didn't like the "familiar 3.0L engine" comment. It is a completely new engine!! Nothing familiar about it at all expect for it's displacement. "Familiar" is what you call the old MB 3.2, and soon what you will call the 3.5. That engine has certainly done the rounds, even seen in Chryslers...
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      11-21-2005, 10:08 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamieA
To me, the Lexus' interior looks like an MB of yesteryear.

I liked the Sonata comment, I must admit I have seen a few Sonatas in that Beige colour that most Lexus seem to come in and thought - there is a new IS, but then seen the melted "H" badge

I didn't like the "familiar 3.0L engine" comment. It is a completely new engine!! Nothing familiar about it at all expect for it's displacement. "Familiar" is what you call the old MB 3.2, and soon what you will call the 3.5. That engine has certainly done the rounds, even seen in Chryslers...
If you think about it also, the sonota's rear looks like the 2005 Honda Accord, it's actually pretty coincidental the accord got it's facelift on the 06' model, same year the sonata which had a similar back was introduced. Honda probably wanted to distinguish the difference between the sonata and accord. Too bad Lexus wasn't to quick on monitoring who's designs look similar, but then again hyundai is notorious for copying other car companies designs.
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      11-21-2005, 10:20 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stressdoc
Why does BMW need to release the 335i (and the diesels) ?

"No question, the IS is the hands-down winner, with a brand-new DOHC 3.5-liter V-6 that delivers a lusty 306 horsepower and 277 pounds-feet of torque to the rear wheels through a six-speed Tiptronic-style gearbox.

The Lexus is quick and powerful, and easily outguns the 330i. The BMW is fitted with a familiar twin-cam 3.0-liter inline six that makes 255 horsepower and 220 pounds-feet of torque. The BMW's acceleration is sporting, if not quite break-neck... there is no substitute for power -- and the IS dominates. "

Because in the US, this board is an example, many people take 0-60 time as a factor in their car purchase.
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      11-23-2005, 10:29 PM   #21
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Some more reading.............

http://www.autoweb.com/content/shar...icle_id_int/861

Head-to-Head Showdown: 2006 BMW 330i vs. 2006 Lexus IS 350
Lexus penetrates BMWís armor by Thom Blackett

Nothing says success like a fancy new car. Not a fresh-from-the-showroom-floor Kia or Chevy, mind you, but rather a sexy Infiniti, Mercedes-Benz, or maybe a BMW or Lexus. Youíve paid your dues, spending countless years in school or building a business, sacrificing home and social life for long work hours, and doing whatever it took to move up. Finally, things are starting to pay off in the form of some financial and job security. A loaded up new ride is definitely in order.

For the upwardly mobile and others looking for a sport/luxury sedan in the $30,000-45,000 range, the choice has typically been the BMW 3 Series. Competitors like the Infiniti G35 and Acura TL have attempted to dethrone the BMW, and though impressive, neither ultimately captures the allure of the Ultimate Driving Machine.

Enter the 2006 Lexus IS 350, a wild-styled, 306-horsepower sedan that sits as the best challenger to the 3 Series yet. It goes up against a redesigned 2006 3 Series that features more subdued bodywork than other recent BMWs and comes with a more powerful engine. We thought that made for a great excuse for a comparison test, and pitted the new IS 350 against a BMW 330i. Not surprisingly, the BMW overcomes a dearth of power to maintain its position atop drivingís thrill hill. But in all other respects, the redesigned Lexus proves that the 3 Series is anything but invincible.

In the world of compact sport/luxury cars, there is one nameplate that has reigned supreme for as long as many drivers can remember. Itís the BMW 3 Series, and for 2006 itís redesigned with a fresh new look and more power. Heck, BMW has even seen fit to make the frustrating iDrive ergonomic controller an option on the new Three, which helps to make the companyís smallest sedan also its most compelling. But thereís still room for some good olí competition, and the best of this yearís crop of 3 Series fighters is the 2006 Lexus IS, specifically the 350 model.

To keep things even, and to make life more interesting, the highest-powered, rear-wheel-drive trims of each model were used, the BMW 330i and the Lexus IS 350, each equipped with an automatic transmission.

Our Bavarian competitor was a Titanium Silver Metallic 2006 BMW 330i that had a plethora of options tacked on, including that fancy paint ($475); a Cold Weather Package ($1,000) that added heated front seats, headlight washers, and a fold-down rear seat; and a Premium Package ($2,000) that added a universal garage door opener, an auto-dimming rearview mirror with an integrated compass, power folding mirrors, power lumbar, a BMW Assist and Bluetooth communications system, and leather seats. To make sure the driving was as entertaining as possible, the Sport Package ($1,600) added 18-inch alloy wheels, a sport suspension system, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and front sport seats; but we did include a Steptronic six-speed automatic transmission ($1,275) since thatís what most people actually buy. Rounding out the list of options was an active steering system ($1,250); a navigation system ($2,000); and Sirius satellite radio ($595). With a $695 destination charge thrown in, the sticker on our Bimmer towered at $47,390.

Power for the BMW 330i comes from a 3.0-liter, inline six-cylinder engine generating 255 horsepower at 6,600 rpm and 220 lb.-ft. of torque at 2,750 rpm. Transmission choices include a standard six-speed manual that offers an EPA-estimated 20 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway, or the optional Steptronic automatic that returns 21 and 29 mpg, respectively. Our tester with the automatic tranny ran an average of 20.6 miles per gallon.

The 330i rides on a fully independent suspension, with struts and coil springs up front and a multi-link setup in the rear. Front and rear stabilizer bars are standard on all 3 Series sedans. Ventilated discs measuring 330mm in front and 336mm out back work with a standard antilock system, electronic brake force distribution, and electronic brake assistance to slow things down. Though our tester came fitted with 18-inch alloys, the 330i comes stock with 17-inch alloy wheels and 225/45 run flat tires. Among the long list of standard features is a free maintenance program spanning four years or 50,000 miles, front side airbags, front and rear curtain airbags, a 13-speaker audio system with surround sound, a power sunroof, and power front seats with driverís side memory.
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      11-23-2005, 10:31 PM   #22
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When it first saw the light of day for the 2001 model year, the Lexus IS 300 marked Japanís first legitimate attack on the BMW 3 Series. Upon its debut, the IS was available with four doors, folded and creased styling that was boxy but sleek, 215 horses from its 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder engine, and a price tag that hovered around the $30,000 mark. As expected from a brand like Lexus, the 2001 IS 300 was a critical success, but consumers outside of the Sunbelt stayed away in droves, allowing the 3 Series to remain the king of the hill. For 2002, Lexus added the SportCross, a five-door wagon that did little to increase sales. While Lexus went to work on the next-generation version, the original IS continued on through the 2005 model year with few changes. Even the price held close to $30,000.

For 2006, Lexus creates an all-new car with a completely different design vocabulary. Sporting a long nose/snubbed tail design borrowed from the larger GS, of the 2006 Lexus IS is available as either a 250 or 350 model. We got our hands on a pre-production IS 350, one that came without a window sticker, though such examples on your dealerís lot will start at $36,030 including a $590 destination charge. Given that pre-production cars arenít quite up to retail detail, we have to scratch comparisons of build quality from this head-to-head showdown. Nonetheless, we can tell you that our 2006 Lexus IS 350 was pretty well pimped out. Like the BMW, our IS had a Sport package that included a fully independent sport suspension utilizing double wishbones up front and a multi-link setup out back, and 18-inch alloy wheels wearing Dunlop Sport Maxx 225/40 front and 255/40 rear summer tires. Xenon headlights lit the way, and we enjoyed the optional 300-watt, 14-speaker, six-CD Mark Levinson sound system. This lush audio equipment is bundled with a navigation system that can play DVDs when the carís transmission is placed in ďpark,Ē and our IS 350 also had both a Bluetooth wireless communications system and a reversing camera on board. Other perks included wood trim, heated mirrors with driverís side memory, a power tilt and telescoping steering wheel with memory, rain-sensing wipers, alloy metal pedals, and leather seats that were heated up front. In total, we estimate our pre-production Lexus IS 350 would sticker for roughly $44,000.

Under the 2006 Lexus IS 350ís hood is a 3.5-liter, 24-valve, dual overhead cam V6 engine pushing 306 horsepower at 6,400 rpm and 277 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,800 rpm. The only transmission offered is a six-speed automatic with a manual-shift sport mode. Mileage is rated by the EPA at 21 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway; we achieved an average of 19.9 mpg during our testing.

Each 2006 Lexus IS 350 sits on a fully independent suspension system using MacPherson struts in front and a multi-link setup in the rear. Front and rear stabilizer bars are standard. Slowing the 3,527-lb. IS 350 down, the four-wheel-disc, antilock braking system includes ventilated rotors that measure 334mm in front and 310mm in back. Electronic brake force distribution and an electronic brake assistance system chip in to stall the standard 17-inch alloy wheels wearing tires measuring 225/45 in front and 245/45 in the rear.

There are two aspects of this test that truly set the BMW and Lexus apart: Convenience and driving. As discussed in later pages, the BMW captures the crown for driving excitement, but itís the 2006 Lexus IS 350 that takes the stress out of the daily commute. Our BMW tester was hampered by its optional iDrive system, so the Lexusí mostly logical and intuitive controls were the clear favorite. But convenience is about more than radio controls and navigation systems. The IS pulls ahead with a larger cargo area, more interior storage capacity, and as simple as it may sound, better cupholders.

Forget the fact that the 2006 BMW 330i has an optional split folding rear seat. Forget that the trunk is nicely lined with a grab handle in the lid and multiple tie-down points and cargo holds aplenty. Forget it all because it pales in comparison to the damned iDrive controller that comes with the optional navigation system. Some BMW owners and enthusiasts claim that if you take the time to understand this overly complex system, the benefits are real. Maybe so. But when you can get into a car like the Lexus IS 350 and navigate nearly every inch of the interior without ever cracking open the ownerís manual, yet get every bit as much functionality as you would from the BMW, it demonstrates that iDrive has been created for the sole enjoyment of masochists.

From the first twist of the BMWís key, iDrive starts its cruel game. On the center screen is a message that requires the driver to ďacceptĒ before any further action can be taken, though thereís no obvious way of accepting. Either break out the ownerís manual, or better yet, avoid this option all together. Thankfully, the radio and climate control systems can be operated independently.
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