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Old 29.09.2006, 15:14
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BMW vs Audi vs ?

I am very close to signing my life away and commiting my long term future to a large employer in Switzerland. As part of the deal I get a company car. To be honest I probably dont need a car but I have an allowance and cant have the cash equivalent so I need to choose something...

If it was my money I would probably get a little sports car or something but they are not allowed as company cars so my options seem to be as follows....

BMW 3 series (low model.....nothing fancy)

BMW X3 (the cheapest one)

Audi A3 (a high end model with quattro)

Audi A4 (low model.....nothing fancy)

Although apart from sports cars there are no restrictions.....

Now in terms of uses I may use it to drive to work (although I a big on public transport, especially when it actually works here).....but mainly I will use it for weekend trips.....skiing, boarding in the winter and cycling, hiking in the summer.....so I was thinking that 4x4 might be a good idea.....anyone have any experience of winter driving in the mountains?
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Old 29.09.2006, 15:49
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

Does it have to be German?

The Swiss I know (including farmers) who live in the mountains or remote areas swear by Subarus, Legacy or Outback wagons. An Audi quattro wagon if they can afford it, but they are not that much better. They particularly dont like the handling characterics of high ground clearance 4wd's on twisty mountain roads.

No, definately not as sexy but damn fine cars.
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Old 29.09.2006, 20:00
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

BMW is going to get you rear wheel drive. BMWs have a little bit of a reputation for being difficult in the snow. But frankly the times you need 4 wheel drive - even with regular trips to the mountains is rare-

I have driven here for 17 winters and in the early years skied up to 35 days a season and never had anything more than an Opel Ascona (rear wheal drive) and Audi 80 (FWD) and, with winter tyres, never needed even chains more than a couple of times and then only because the police where at the bottom making drivers mount them.

Basically if it's snowing hard, you don't want to go skiing anyway and otherwise punters are money and the resorts ensure the raods to them are cleared smartly.

I wouldn't touch a SUV (and Clarkson slated the X3 anyway). I'd go for the A3 Audi and have FWD anyway...
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Old 29.09.2006, 20:45
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

I love car discussions: everyone's an expert

Ask yourself if you feel the need to stoke your Ego/status with a car badge... really be honest ...now get a Twike Ha! Ha! only joking.

I've hired or borrowed all but the X3 (worse than a man bag) and er, wouldn't have any. The 3 Series is the standard, but lowly models are weighty and you'll feel mutton dressed as lamb.

The A4 is reasonably nice in appearance and a tidy car but a bit poky and always seen as the Beemers poor relation.

The A3 ...hmm, nice to sit in, everything works ...but zero driver appeal. They should rebrand it as the Audi A_to_B.

Subarus? I used to have an Imprezza in the UK, for a while. Bonkers good fun, but a hard ride, lightweight body (no door thwump) and not really cred if you're over 30!

How about you go ker-azy and get a Golf? The GTi is also a standard and I'd say more bang for your buck than an A4. It's also classless. The snobs will think it's your 'other' car, no-one else will care. V5 and R32 models great fun

Ooh, lucky you! I get excited about new tyres on my bike!

(I predict I'll be back to this thread!)
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Old 30.09.2006, 00:44
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

Today's BMW's are shitty quality. Seat belt came loose after 3 months. Plastics falling out or cracking. Engine good and road holding good. That iis it.
I have had 2 new ones(still have one 320d kombi, dream car to some ill-informed people), i sort of regretted buying it (own pocket money, no company auto).

For value, i go for jap make: a big toyota or subaru (4 wheel drive).
Hyundai eats up petrol like crazy (all models).
Kia = good tennis adverts, that is it.


4 wheel drive, needed. Last year heavy snow in ZH, i was nearly stuck on Sunday (no one to help me), with rear wheel drive 320d.
Extreme weathers coming up, I would go for 4x4.

Forget BMW, maybe audi still ok.

For 50k, go for SUbaru forester / outback.
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Old 30.09.2006, 09:48
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

We have both an old BMW 325i & an Audi A6 which is the "family car". The BMW is great in the summer and good weather in the winter but if there is any frost or snow the real wheel drive makes it so difficult to drive. The back end goes out at the slightest acceleration. The car is now almot 10 years old and we have never had a single problem with it. Don't know what new BWM's are like for reliability. The Audi with it's 4 wheel drive was great in the snow last year, we live in the country and while the BMW was conigned to the parking space the A6 got us around. If possible I'd now always buy a car with 4 wheel drive but not a big SUV, I've had one of those and the petrol consumption was a nightmare.
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Old 30.09.2006, 12:45
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

I've had my BMW X3 diesel for over 18 months now and absolutely love it. Drove a Pajero in Oz which was roomier and more a 'real 4WD' but the X3 is an easier drive and feels like a car, but with the 4x4 security for winter driving. So.....I would recommend it personally but see plenty of people on here who wouldn't.
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Old 30.09.2006, 15:09
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

My father-in-law always had Audis as his company cars in Switzerland. Had to do lots of winter driving and was really happy with them. Now in the US, after several other makes of cars, they have an Audi wagon (estate car) - one of the fancy ones that raises and lowers the height of the car (in relation to the road).

I can say that the day I shattered my wrist into lots of tiny pieces, when an ice storm had paralyzed the entire Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex (i.e. everything but the hospitals closed), that car got us to the emergency room and back (twice) on icy roads (in a place ill equipped to deal with such) and it handled really well.
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Old 30.09.2006, 15:15
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

I'd go for the high end A3 rather than a basic boring A4. Maybe check out the A3 sportback if you're planning one or two IKEA trips
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Old 30.09.2006, 15:20
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

Oh! And if you can wait till next spring...the mother of all company cars will be revamped!

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Old 30.09.2006, 20:38
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

Just wanted to say that I've owned a couple of BMW's including a 7 series. I am most definitely an ex-BMW customer. So many things went wrong (on both cars) in the age 2-5 that it was ridiculous. I eventually managed to get BMW to stump up for some of the parts, but I was always left with sky-high bills for the labour.

Now I drive a Renault RX4, it's cheap, it works and it gives me the functionality of an SUV without taking up half the road and consuming half the planets resources while I drive it (1.9 litre engine). I don't take it off-road (it's not a proper off-roader anyway), but I do actually use it for "utility purposes" - the rear seats are pretty much always removed to give me more storage space. That's more than I can say for the huge range rovers that are used for nothing more than shopping trips and school runs...

Anyway, to get this back to some sort of Swiss-related angle - to the original poster - have you considered using your car allowance to get something second-hand? Prices on new (and expensive) cars drop considerably in the first two years. You can sometimes pick up a 2-year old car for half the price - I did. This especially true for the luxury stuff. I'm sure it's true for the common-as-much X5, maybe you could get one for the same price as an X3 if it was 18-24 months old. If you really had to that is.
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Old 30.09.2006, 21:02
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

Quote:
Oh! And if you can wait till next spring...the mother of all company cars will be revamped!
Thats not a Ford, thats a CHAVrolet.

Matthew, you said yourself you don't need a car, so why go something big like A4 or X3? Why not a high-option Golf with 4Motion, which is just an A3 Quattro with a much cheaper badge. Or is it a bling thing? In Switzerland, this is quite an important question. YOU ARE YOUR CAR.

Having said that, go all-time 4wd. You will really appreciate it when that cold white stuff is laying around everywhere.

Would have to agree with Yokine, Subaru is a great alpine vehicle. In fact, I think Subaru has deliberately made the new Impreza extremely ugly, just so they can brag it will sell on performance alone.
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Old 02.10.2006, 11:50
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

I know this is a mid spec A4 model but an Audi A4 2.0TQ is a very nice car.

In the end though, just make sure it isn't slow!!!
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Old 02.10.2006, 17:51
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

Quote:


Thats not a Ford, thats a CHAVrolet.

Matthew, you said yourself you don't need a car, so why go something big like A4 or X3? Why not a high-option Golf with 4Motion, which is just an A3 Quattro with a much cheaper badge. Or is it a bling thing? In Switzerland, this is quite an important question. YOU ARE YOUR CAR.

Having said that, go all-time 4wd. You will really appreciate it when that cold white stuff is laying around everywhere.

Would have to agree with Yokine, Subaru is a great alpine vehicle. In fact, I think Subaru has deliberately made the new Impreza extremely ugly, just so they can brag it will sell on performance alone.
BMW is also known as "p**** extension" in many parts of DE and Europe.
p**** = mammal male reproduction organ

Hey, I bought 2 new ones....during my 5 years in CH.
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Old 02.10.2006, 18:29
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

Quote:
BMW is also known as "p**** extension" in many parts of DE and Europe.
p**** = mammal male reproduction organ

Hey, I bought 2 new ones....during my 5 years in CH.
Does that conjure up an image or what? Was the first one not enough, so you had to attach another?
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Old 02.10.2006, 19:03
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

Quote:
I am very close to signing my life away and commiting my long term future to a large employer in Switzerland. As part of the deal I get a company car. To be honest I probably dont need a car but I have an allowance and cant have the cash equivalent so I need to choose something...

If it was my money I would probably get a little sports car or something but they are not allowed as company cars so my options seem to be as follows....

BMW 3 series (low model.....nothing fancy)

BMW X3 (the cheapest one)

Audi A3 (a high end model with quattro)

Audi A4 (low model.....nothing fancy)

Although apart from sports cars there are no restrictions.....

Now in terms of uses I may use it to drive to work (although I a big on public transport, especially when it actually works here).....but mainly I will use it for weekend trips.....skiing, boarding in the winter and cycling, hiking in the summer.....so I was thinking that 4x4 might be a good idea.....anyone have any experience of winter driving in the mountains?
Hi,

I guess you will find that sports car means one or both of having only two doors and convertible. At least that is my experience. So a Porsche Cayanne is fine as is a four door Ferrari... With respect to the allowance you will probably find that you can go to for example your local BMW dealer and get a demo or one year old low mileage job and still have this covered by your car allowance. You are left almost certainly with a value ceiling of 56K which will apply whether new or used.

The 4x4 option is a very good idea but have you considered cars such as Mark suggests (okay his is no longer made) such as Subaru or the Passat 4motion? Golf in my opinion are overpriced and overrated...

Richard
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Old 03.10.2006, 13:54
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

I spotted a $56k number somewhere in the post.

For that amount, you can buy over my friend's Z4 (1 year old, also company car). He wants to sell it (he is leaving company).

Actually after he bought that (2.2l version), the company issued a policy of no coupes....praise the intelligent HR clerk who approved the leasing.

HAT
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Old 05.10.2006, 11:38
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

Thanks for all the comments......while I see that 4x4 is not necessarily needed I think I like the idea of having it just in case.....my current preference is for the A3 sportback....but if the allowance doesnt go that far then the golf will do. The subarus are great cars but i just cant see myself driving one!
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Old 10.10.2006, 00:08
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

Having just made my introductions, I guess it safe to throw in my own experiences on this..

I drive an older fwd A3 and find it a great car for both cruising on the motorways and for squeezing into the tight parking spaces in Zurich.

I've only ever had to use chains a few times and that includes going up fairly steep icy roads. Generally, a good set of winter tyres will do you for most conditions in Switzerland.

I've been tempted before to change to a quattro, but the extra costs involved have put me off. If you do go for the sportback, I'd love to hear what you think of it.
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Old 10.10.2006, 00:22
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Re: BMW vs Audi vs ?

do you dare to be different?
Jag AWD X-type.......?
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