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  #1  
Old 02-06-2003, 10:40 PM
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Question Which Cabriolet is better? BMW or AUDI?

If you had a choice between a 1994 BMW 325iC Cabriolet or a 1994 Audi Cabiolet 2.8, which one would you pick and why?

I'm looking at 4 seat covertibles for around $8,000. Do you know of any other good choices?

Regards,

Don

EDIT: Typed wrong model year

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Last edited by Limited Edition; 02-07-2003 at 03:09 PM.
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  #2  
Old 02-06-2003, 11:00 PM
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I'd go with the Bimmer, for a number of reasons. Even though the sedans switched from the classic E30 platform to the more modern E36 in 1992, the convertibles were still E30's.

1. If you have any interest in modding your car, there's a lot more on offer in the aftermarket for the E30s than for the Audi, which was built off the B4 (Passat, 80, 90) platform. Lots more cheap parts sources for the standard stuff as well.

2. You don't want to pay German dealer service prices for an $8k car. There are many more BMW independent shops than Audi.

3. In Virginia snow's not a huge issue; you'd rather have the rwd E30 than a fwd or quattro Audi for handling and simplicity.

4. On another thread, someone was mentioning the problems with the Audi 2.8 v6, the 2.5 BMW straight six is pretty reliable.

5. Build quality is considerably better on the BMW (my opinion only). Ultimately, the Audi is a top of the line VW platform, while the BMW was always at a higher level in the food chain.

Your only other real choice in a 4 place Euro-convert of the same era/price was the Saab 900. Check out the classifieds on www.saabnet.com; a quick look shows a '95 (newer body style) 900S convert from California with 85k miles for $6700. Saabs depreciate, take advantage of it.
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  #3  
Old 02-06-2003, 11:00 PM
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i think the beemer straight 6's are by far better than any of the 2.8's that audi ever came out with. i don't know if that is the 30v head on the 92 audi - i doubt it, in which case it would be underpowered and you won't be happy. i would opt for the beemer just because of this unless there is a specific problem with the engine in that year model that will be difficult to fix...
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  #4  
Old 02-07-2003, 02:19 PM
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Thanks for the input! Keep them coming...

I've owned a 92 Mustang Conv. 5.0 and it was fast as heck but it was too rough and had too much body flex for my taste.

I've also owned a Jaguar before and I would love a Jaguar XJS Cabrio but I don't really have the money to "maintain" one of these.

Saabs are so quirky that I never really looked at them before but they do sound like a great value.

This car will not be driven in the snow and it needs to be somewhat reliable for a approx 10 year old car.

Regards,

Don
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  #5  
Old 02-07-2003, 03:34 PM
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go for the bimmer right away (for all you non-bmw savvy, bimmer refers to the car, and beemer refers to the motorcycle). I have many friends with E30's and one with a 325i convertible, and they are reliable and easily upgradable. I would definitley prefer the bmw over the audi for many reasons already mentioned; reliability, cost of parts, cost of labor, etc. On top of that, there are many BMW forums that are very helpful (bimmer.info, roadfly.com, dtm-power.net). My experience with Audis (I had an '86 5000 cs quattro) is that they have nice amounts of power and awesome handeling, but they break down too often and cost lots to repair. Good luck, and have fun!
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Old 02-07-2003, 04:18 PM
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I recommend BMW. Certainly it can stand for "Be Maintenance Wary" but if you are, you'll love every minute of the experience.

The rest of this isn't really on point, but I'll share it anyway. Great bedtime reading. It will put you all to sleep.

My '93 E34 has been very expensive, compared to my '88 300TE. I could've purchased another W124 with what I've spent on the BMW, and I've done a lot of the work myself! The E34 has had head gasket replacement, strut replacement, door lock actuator, oil pan gasket (why DO they specify cork gaskets?), wheels and tires (accident avoidance cost - slammed curb avoiding Corolla crossing 3 lanes on freeway - went plus one with the replacement wheels), a window motor, fuel door lock actuator, CD player and windshield, not to mention the expected -brake rotors and pads, microfilters, bulbs, etc. It has weird design features - the perfect example: The wiring harness for lots of things electrical behind the C-pillar (trunk lights and lock actuator, CD player, etc.) runs alongside a trunk lid hinge; periodically, I have to go into the wiring harness and repair the wires that have been severed by the hinge cover - lots of E34 owners report this problem. The battery (with a thing called a fusible link that, when it fails, kills all the systems in the car) is under the rear seat.

By contrast, my 300TE costs the price of regular maintenance. Sure, it could use an upper timing chain cover gasket replacement. Bought new tires for it awhile back (Bridgestone RE950s - thought I'd give them a try and they're not bad, not great), replaced the little rubber exterior cover for the base of the antenna. Oh, I installed Euro headlamps (thanks CJ) and have changed the wiper blade, too. Need to get those new trim pieces under the headlamps (not using headlamp wipers) painted up and mounted and will get around to putting on clear turn indicators, but you get the picture. No drama.

My ladyfriend, who spins around in a pristine '99 E430 (with only 33K on the clock), has driven the 300TE and also drives a Dodge Durango (3 kids who ski race), prefers driving my 10-year old BMW to all of them. I suppose if it were fully restored, she'd like the 2002 even better. Until I spent some time behind the wheel of her car, I could only assume that the E34 exhibits some particular quality she likes. I discovered what it was while driving around in her car.

The E34 handles like a dream.

The E430 is very nice - a competent car. In the final analysis, though, it is dull compared to the BMW. At speed, the E34 goes where you will it to go. (I should mention I installed a performance-tuned engine management chip, which has increased horsepower and torque somewhat....) The feedback through the steering wheel is precise and it goes, without much bodyroll, pitching or yawing, where you point it. By contrast, I kept missing apexes in the E430 because I kept over or under correcting for my line. Going over familiar road imperfections, her Mercedes seemed to continue to react to them after they were behind me. The BMW handles them and then moves on to the next challenge. The brakes on my BMW are predictable and they grab like a high school boy on prom night. The E430 brakes were, again, less predictable. I still haven't figured out how to apply them as smoothly as I'd like.

(By the way - none of these complaints apply to my W124. It simply can't keep up with the BMW; then again, it's smooth as silk and the driving sensations are, in a different way, also appealing.)

When I returned from a morning in the E430, she asked me what I thought of the car. I was noncommital (didn't want to hurt her feelings) at best. Even she prefers the BMW, though.

Sorry to bore you all.
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  #7  
Old 02-11-2003, 03:34 AM
goodman888
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Re: Which Cabriolet is better? BMW or AUDI?

Quote:
Originally posted by black 1994 c280
If you had a choice between a 1994 BMW 325iC Cabriolet or a 1994 Audi Cabiolet 2.8, which one would you pick and why?

I'm no expert and havent tried Audi.

I owned a 95 BMW Convertible 325i, 56,000 km
http://www.ahfung.com/car/car.html

I'm basically very happy with it. For quality, my current CLK is far better than it.... (of course...)

but for riding fun, BMW is great, without doubt.

Here in HK, BMW is far more popular than Audi and hence easier and cheaper maintenace. But people recommended me 95 convertible rather than 94. 94 is the 1st batch. I think 95 may be safer.

Correct me if I'm wrong
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  #8  
Old 02-11-2003, 01:55 PM
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Have you considered a 93 300E / 94-95 E320 cabriolet?

I can't imagine owning a nicer car.

This and the 92-94 500E/E500 are both given 4 stars for collectability by Barrett's Illustrated Buyers Guide for Mercedes Benz.

The only downside is the price. Because of the limited numbers, used prices are still high - in the $25k-$35k range.
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  #9  
Old 02-11-2003, 01:59 PM
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depending on price, I'd go for the BMW over the audi. Only recently has Audi in my opinion gotten better.

But if I could spend upwards of $25k on it, I'd go for an E320 convertible.

Alon
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  #10  
Old 02-11-2003, 02:48 PM
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My ideal would be a 95 E320 Cabrio but unfortunately my limit is $8,000.

I'm looking for a four seat convertible for $8,000 or less that will be reliable. I'd prefer european models.

Any other suggestions?

Regards,

Don
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  #11  
Old 02-11-2003, 03:22 PM
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theres always the VW cabrio, but I always saw those as girls cars...

I'd look for a BMW...

Alon

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