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Old 05-19-2008, 03:07 AM   #1
Stin
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Buy slightly used car vs. new? BMW 330Ci vs. Mazda RX-8

I was out car shopping with my parents the other day because they are looking to get a couple year old SUV or 4 door family car. I myself am also in the market for a new car since I graduated college a few months ago and have some money saved up. I was thinking of just buying a new car such as a Pontiac Solstice, G6 GT, Scion tc, or Mazda 3 (your typical 20k post college graduate car) However, my parents started to suggest that I look at slightly used cars because I may be able to get something nicer that is only a few years old. I came across a 2002 BMW 330Ci at the dealership for around $15k with 60k miles on it. It was a pretty sharp car and I never thought I could be driving around or even afford a BMW at this age. I also found a 2004 Mazda RX-8 for around $17k with 25k miles on it. What would you do in this situation, buy something brand new or something a little nicer and a little cheaper but a few years old? Here are the links to the two cars.

http://hendrick-dodge.ebizautos.com/...px?iid=2781897
http://www.carmax.com/dyn/factsheet/...eet.aspx?KNo=3


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Old 05-19-2008, 04:27 AM   #2
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I just came across this, it was an older infiniti or a new altima (with push start!). I went with the infiniti, although lately i've been seeing the scions and they look suh-weet!
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Old 05-19-2008, 04:40 AM   #3
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My wife got a 2006 330Ci a few weeks ago and that thing is bad ass! Get the Bimmer The Mazda will be cheaper to own in the long run I would guess. BMW service isn't cheap.
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Old 05-19-2008, 06:16 AM   #4
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As long as the car has not been abused, I feel you're best to go with a car that's 2-4 years old with 20-40K miles on it. Most of the depresiation is gone and you still have a very nice, pretty new car...never buy new...just my opinion...
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Old 05-19-2008, 06:22 AM   #5
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agreed 100%, and the reasoning behind my purchase

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Old 05-19-2008, 06:59 AM   #6
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I agree with the others, it makes more sense to buy used.

Just make sure you find out how much gas/insurance/maintenance is on the BMW/RX8, before you buy, b/c those will be more expensive than the other cars mentioned.
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Old 05-19-2008, 07:00 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 88jr View Post
As long as the car has not been abused, I feel you're best to go with a car that's 2-4 years old with 20-40K miles on it. Most of the depresiation is gone and you still have a very nice, pretty new car...never buy new...just my opinion...
Always bet on Beemer! I have a 2004 530i and i wouldn't trade it for anything...except maybe the 650i ;-) Anyhow...one things for sure two things for certain...once you own a bmw, you dont wanna drive anything else.
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Old 05-19-2008, 08:10 AM   #8
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Id get something cheaper and more reliable, and save the rest of the money.
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Old 05-19-2008, 08:34 AM   #9
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Hey Stin,
I actually owned both cars (BMW 330 and RX-8). I loved the Beamer but definitely had issues. Windows on it were horrible. I had to replace the regulators in the all four windows. The driver side 2x and it was approx $400 a pop. Service is extremely high. Front Brakes where $1300 to replace. My AC compressor went out and that was $1,700 to fix. I gave up and traded it in for a new RX-8. I had no troubles with my RX-8 yet, knock on wood, but it only has 25k miles on it. However, due to the Roto engine in the RX-8, don't think service is much cheaper than a BMW.
BMW vs RX-8 (my opinion)
Both take Premium Gas Beamer was better on Gas. Getting about 24 mpg w/ the Beamer and 17/18 mpg with the RX-8
RX-8 - handles better and is faster.
BMW - has more luxury features. RX-8 is pretty standard.
BMW is more spacious. RX-8 has no spare tire and trunk is tiny. Back seats are good if you are 4ft tall.

Overall, I like my RX8 better than that BMW model series.
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Old 05-19-2008, 12:41 PM   #10
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I would do a combination.... but a slightly used car, but not the BMW or the Mazda. both of these cares are expansive to maintain, and getting into a 6 year old BMW can be very expensive.

Get your price point first... if you want to spend $20,000 then let that be your price. If you want it to be $17,000 then let that be your price, but don't go above just for a sweet deal.

Look everywhere at everything offered. Try online (cars.com autotrader.com....) your local newspaper, and local car lots. See what your money can buy and put anything that is not an immediate no in a list.

Take that list and pare it down to the ones that you really want, then just do a pro-con on each (cost of gas, cost of insurance, cost of maintenance, desirability factors). That should help you find the right one. If the BMW has enough desirability factors that out-weigh the insurance and maintenance expense, then it is your car. But you never know till you look at all of your options... you may find a 2006 Mercedes that you want more and has a better price.

Just my two cents.
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Old 05-19-2008, 12:48 PM   #11
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I have a 2001 BMW 325xi that I bought 3 years ago and I love it. It is expensive to fix though. Also I bought an expensive car right out of college and really regretted it. The payments suck. I recommend buying something cheaper but obviously do what makes you happy. Just my 2 cents.
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Old 05-19-2008, 11:00 PM   #12
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I think I'm just going to bite the bullet and get a new Mazda 3 for around 17-18k. They have a deal going right now for $500 cash back and 1.9% financing for 36 months or 3.9% for 60 months. That BMW is sold now. I figure I get into a decent car that won't tie me down and then maybe get something better in the future when I am more financially secure. I know I can also get a Scion tc for around the same price as the 3 but I haven't driven one of those yet. They seem kind of bland to me although they come fully loaded for the price. What I really want to get is a Pontiac Solstice or a Saturn Sky, but for $25k @ 9% interest and no back seat/storage room it seems a little impractical at the moment.

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Old 05-19-2008, 11:55 PM   #13
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Disclaimer **not knowing anything about your situation other than what has been stated**
I would say buy the Mazada 3 if it fits better in your budget. As everyone else has said, buying a BMW is expensive and owning a BMW is even more expensive, though worth every penney IMHO. With just graduating college a few months ago, let yourself get settled into your career and living arrangements for a while before you commit to a car that you REALLY want/need to take care of.
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Old 05-20-2008, 12:46 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stin View Post
I think I'm just going to bite the bullet and get a new Mazda 3 for around 17-18k. They have a deal going right now for $500 cash back and 1.9% financing for 36 months or 3.9% for 60 months. That BMW is sold now. I figure I get into a decent car that won't tie me down and then maybe get something better in the future when I am more financially secure. I know I can also get a Scion tc for around the same price as the 3 but I haven't driven one of those yet. They seem kind of bland to me although they come fully loaded for the price. What I really want to get is a Pontiac Solstice or a Saturn Sky, but for $25k @ 9% interest and no back seat/storage room it seems a little impractical at the moment.
Make sure you can fit in the Mazda 3. I find that there's not enough legroom and I'm 5' 10". It gets uncomfortable after a while. But then that may just be me. WONDERFUL CAR THOUGH, handles great (and I do mean GREAT!) and gets decent mileage. The stick shift shifts like butter. Built like a rock. Quality interior, comfortable seats. Just a good car overall. Nice headlights, especially the HIDs. Mazdaspeed3 version... seriously zoom zoom, lol.
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Old 05-20-2008, 10:49 AM   #15
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New curveball thrown into the mix. I can get a 2005 Chrysler Crossfire with less than 25k miles for around $14-15k. Good looks and good reviews from what I have read. It's 80% Mercedes parts.


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