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Discussion Starter #1
Greeting,

Newbie post here. I'm looking for input on what I should do. A little background: I've owned 4 cars, all Toyotas, zero problems. I traded my '87 Camry (187K miles) in on my 2000 Solara SE V6 Manual. Before I bought the Solara, I was seriously looking at keeping the Camry as a beater, and buying a 1993.5-1994 Supra TT. To make a long story short, because I have 2 little boys I needed a more reliable family-ish car: I picked the Solara. At first I was driving my boys to school rarely, having 2 doors didn't bother me. Now I drive them EVERYDAY.

Three months after I bought the Solara I saw my first IS300 commercial and started kicking myself.

My weighting is:
1st. Fun
2nd. reliability
3rd. Function (family runs)
4th. cost (initial price as well as gas, insurance, and possible upgrades)

Do I:
A.) Keep the Solara, and have TRD's body kit and supercharger added. (Note: Having a FWD sporty car kind of bugs me. I'm really leaning towards a RWD car)

(the rest of these I will sell the Solara)

B.) BMW 330i/xi. Not trying to start a flame war, I'm little concerned about the reliability. Also I live in Indiana, not much snow, is AWD worth it?

C.) IS300, I love the fact that the engine is the little brother of the 2JZ-GTE. I may also wait for the manual. Looks very cool and it's a Lexus.

D.) MAYBE an Audi S4. I would have to drug my wife to get her to go for a $40K car.

E.) Toyota ECHO, hear me out, and also buy a '93.5 - '94 Supra TT. Use the ECHO as a beater and the Supra on weekends :)

I'm looking for something a little different from the crowd. I see a ton of BMW 3-series around, while I've only ever seen one Supra, and 2 IS300s. The S4 is 5th right now only because of the price, and it doesn't sound like there is any hope for a discount.

This is not meant to be flame bait, BMW's, Audi's, and Lexus' are all GREAT cars, I'm just looking for honest input.

Thanks

Farch

p.s. I tried to read all the posts on IS300 VS. some-car.
 

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Nice post!

Disclaimer: I own an IS.

(A) wouldn't work because it doesn't fit your need for four doors. I have two kids also and the four doors are imperative for me.

(B) is going to be difficult because you say 40K is a stretch (as it was for me - well not exactly, just didn't want to spend that much on a car). 330i with any equipment is going to be more than 40K.

(D) The S4? Ditto, I think they cost around 40 and they aren't nearly as reliable as Lexus if you plan to keep for awhile. It's an awesome stealth machine but the exterior styling to me is "yawn."

(E) Echo. I wouldn't do that because you'll be spending too much time in it and hating it.

So that leaves the IS. It really is a great deal, especially with a discount. I paid 32.8K for a loaded one (minus graphite wheels and wood switch plates). Where else do you find exclusivity, performance, reliability and decent luxury wrapped in a cool package for 32.8? Need more speed - load in the SC.



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cardinal
'01 Silver/Black
LS, LD, HH, SR, 17"
 

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I second that.. IS300!
However, don't despair about the S4.. I saw a "slighty used" one in the yahoo classifieds for about $37000 once.. as a sidenote, Audi is also bring an S4 Avant here too. Keep your eyes peeled... you may come upon a good deal. tough decision! good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the replies.

cardinal_creek:

Thanks


One thing I didn't mention in my first post: I will be accepting a new job tomorrow (SHHHH, my current company doesn't know it yet). Because of this I will be commuting an hour (each way) for the next 6 to 8 months. So this may push off my buying until late spring/early summer. Just in time for the IS300 manual and maybe the same time the SC from TRD comes out


(A) I agree, I had to test to see if I was screwing up by selling my Solara. It is fun drive, but FWD pull always catches me off guard while turning and accelerating.

(B) agreed, I was looking at Eurobuyers and was thinking maybe an 330i for $35K-37K.

(D) agreed, price is the stopper for me...well for my wife


(E) After the 12 year old Camry the ECHO would have felt like a Lexus
but not after my Solara. One day I will own a MKIV!!

C and E are running neck and neck. My wife's vote will be for the Lexus but she is more concerned with selling our house right now. Women!

I'm having too much fun with my Solara manual to give up a manual. If TRD announces a SC for the IS300 that will cinch it.

Farch
 

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don't take the echo...you'll look like SUCH A FRIGGIN IDIOT. if you're gonna do that get a used maxima for a beater =) you can get like a 95 for 12-13? something like that =)
 

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you cant have both
guessed you're Farched huh?

dont get an echo, whatever you do
they'll think ppl want it and start making more


[This message has been edited by DonCorleone (edited September 28, 2000).]
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Ok, ok...not an ECHO. Let's just say, something around $10-12K that's reliable. It has to handle ~150 miles a day for a while.

DonCorleone: bwahahahaha!

A side note: Indy, if you happen to read this, do you live in Indy? Where did you buy from? (I assume Tom Wood)

Farch
 

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1. If FUN is priority 1, don't get a 330i/x. If you can find a 2000 328i that would be more fun. Don't get the 330ix, 4 snow tires would be cheaper and just as good. BMWs are very reliable, don't believe the BS. Don't get a '99 3 series though.
2. S4s can be had for $1500 off MSRP, don't waste money on options and you can get one for $38,000. I wouldn't, too much money even though it's a lot of fun. And the turbos will probably go after a few years.
3. Toyota ECHO? Does is come with an ugly stick so you can give it a daily beating?
 

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Yeah, 330 can be had from Eurobuyers for $35k, no problem, especially if you got to Europe to get one. If you haven't driven it though, do it, I thought it was boring to drive.
IS300 - wouldn't pay $34,500 for one, that's ridiculous when an S4 is $38k and a used M3 is $30,000. But if you can get one for closer to $30k with a 5 speed, it's the car to get.
 

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All u guys sure picking on the Echo. But despite it's looks, I'd still get one if I needed a car and didn't have much money to spend on it. Reason? Simple. Toyota. It is a reliable car. Since I didn't have money to spend on a car in the first place, what would I do with another car when it breaks down? The Focus is a cheap car that has gotten great reviews from every magazine out there. But I know of a new one that just dropped dead one day. Ah, good old Ford reliability! Hm, a Hyundai Elantra? Please...Um, Chevy Metro? At least the Echo has 4 cyl. And GM, if you put their cars in a press you'd squeeze lemonade.

The backseat is pretty decent on the Solara, esp for kids. Do you need the doors that bad? Sure it's a pain in the a$$, opening and closing the doors for the backseat passengers, but the car is pretty fast once the TRD package w/SC is on. Oh well, your call, not mine. l8z
 

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Plus on Holloween your car wouldn't even need a costume. Didn't one of the car magazines just ream the Echo for the way it drives? Why on Earth would you buy that over say a Civic, or Integra LS sedan?

Originally posted by HIBBoyScott:
All u guys sure picking on the Echo. But despite it's looks, I'd still get one if I needed a car and didn't have much money to spend on it.
 

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I own an IS300, and I love it. I think it's the best, most fun car I've owned. It's worth every penny! You'll hear some negative comments from guys who don't even own an IS, and are obsessed with their bimmers, acuras, and audis, but don't let them discourage you.
It's got all the goodies (except a navi) for a great price. And 4 doors too!
Drive it and you'll see what I mean.
If you can, wait for the 2002 model though. You can opt for the manual tranny, and it will have a nav option. Of course a few other enhancements, that are expected, will only make it better. I've driven one, and it's a killer. With TRD suspension mods and tire upgrade, you'll have a hard core sports car for under $30K.
Good luck.

PS. If you can keep the Solara and get a TRD supercharger, go for it. It'll give you about 260+ lb ft of torque and 270 hp, for a mere $4K (including installation). And you'll be able to wup V8 mustangs and the likes.

Good luck.

black/ivory
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Originally posted by ckolsen:
Plus on Holloween your car wouldn't even need a costume. Didn't one of the car magazines just ream the Echo for the way it drives? Why on Earth would you buy that over say a Civic, or Integra LS sedan?

I didn't realize that the Civic and Integra only cost $10K. Maybe the base model sweat box Civic, but an Integra? Where do I get one at $10K.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
ckolsen:
Thanks for the BMW side, I posted here because I notice that a lot of BMW owner jump in here to defend their cars.

I plan on test driving a 330i in a week or two (I will skip the xi, thanks). I'll look for pricing and reviews on a used M3.

HIBBoyScott:
You forced my hand
The FWD bugs me more than the 2 door. Don't ask me why. I'm not sure if you call it oversteer but I hate the fact that if I jump on the gas in a turn the car pulls me into a MUCH tighter turn. Yes, I know that it should but it's always much more than I except.

Just today I hit the gas while turning left across oncoming traffic. Next thing I know I'm going towards a car that was on the crossing road. Not fun. I've driven FWD cars for 9 of the last 12 years and this "oversteer" suprises me everytime. You would think that after 9 years I would get used to it.

The back seat on the Solara is great but I have a bad back and 2 small boys (3 and 5). It's killing me to reach in and strap and unstrap them.

Farch
 

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Originally posted by Farch:
ckolsen:
I'll look for pricing and reviews on a used M3.
Farch
A used M3? Isn't that like marrying a chick that has already been married 4 times? I'm thinking bad news because it has probably been stomped on! I'm sure there are a select few that have been babied, but the rest have probably been ranked on by some guy's teenager


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cardinal
'01 Silver/Black
LS, LD, HH, SR, 17"
 

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Does the Echo cost 10 grand? sure if you get it without AC, power steering, radio etc. If you get one with normal equipment its $13,000. At least the ugly stick is a no-charge option.

Originally posted by HIBBoyScott:
I didn't realize that the Civic and Integra only cost $10K. Maybe the base model sweat box Civic, but an Integra? Where do I get one at $10K.
[/B]
 

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Heh. As if married women are the ones getting the abuse? Seriously you have to look carefully like any sporty car, but most BMW owners drive like old women, how many times do you see a BMW going fast? Where I live in New England, I'd say almost never. As long as it's not a track car, M3's will be fine, very durable too. Get a certified one.
I'd probably take a manual IS300 over a used M3 for the same price though, cause it'd fun but more comfortable and cheaper to maintain.

Originally posted by cardinal_creek:
A used M3? Isn't that like marrying a chick that has already been married 4 times?
 

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If you are accustomed to toyota reliability, then don't even bother looking at used M3s. You'll be seriously disappointed. Especially if you plan to keep the car a long time. I know 7 people who own M3s and they each spend over a thousand bucks a year on maintenance and repairs. It seems to get especially expensive once the car has over 40,000 miles on it.
 
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