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Discussion Starter #1
I just test drove an IS250 AWD and tonight an IS350. IMO...the 250 is slow....the 350 however, was fast as hell. I currently have a 03 CLK500 which is going back in January. My dilema is that I live in Jersey and have to deal with the crappy winter weather. When I bought the Benz...I had to throw on snow tires to get around. I hate to have to change tires every season....Do I say screw the weather and go for a IS350 or should I consider a 330xi. I am reaaaaaaaaalllllllly leaning towards the IS....but could some advice. Thanks!!!
 

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Get the IS, spend the $600 on snow tires (they'll offset the cost of your other set)...and you'll be a happy camper. The new 3 is just plain fugly.
 

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Do you really want all of these people that you don't know making an important decision for you? In an IS/Lexus forum?
C'mon, I think you know the answer.
 

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Try both and make your mind, those are quite two different types of cars. AWD would not help to change laws of physics, so don't expect miracles.
 

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Sit inside the BMW and look at the dash, TRY to be completely objective. THEN sit inside the IS! Decision made! :) BTW, I'm going to deal with crummy weather, plan to simply put all seasons on the stock rims, figure that way I at least have more time on teh summer treads! Just test drove the IS again today, while waiting for my 350 to arrive. This car is SO advanced and so quick it's SICK!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for all the advice....I know my heart is telling me to get the IS350 and just deal with the weather. My buddy has a 325i w i-drive, xenons, sport pkg. The interior of the Lexus does have it over the BMW. When I drove the 250...I liked it...but wasn't in love with it, however after driving a fully loaded 350...it totally changed my mind. It was the Luxury model, handled well, but I think Sport will handle much better. I can also tell you that the IS is 10x better with the interior compared to my CLK500. Puts Benz to shame.

Thanks for all the advice....
 

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I'd get whichever I could get for the lower price, as long as I was able to include a nice set of snow tires with the IS350. I still think the IS350 will be priced lower, so that would make the decision for me. I think the cars each have their respective advantages and disadvantages, so ya, it would probably come down to the $.
 

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BMW stuck with the inline six and deserves credit for that, IMO. I really wish Lexus would have started with an aluminum block and a clean sheet of paper. But, alas, they had the Avalon mill available...

Most road tests say the AWD (x factor if you will) decreases slightly the BMW-ness of the car. Specifically, the steering and suspension isn't quite as dialed in as the non-AWD car. Hey Car and Driver just tested the regular 330i vs the IS350 and gave the nod to the BMW. If the appearance of the interior trim and availibility of buttocks cooling seats are your primary and secondary considerations in buying a car then get the Lexus. If you are one of the very few people who actually buy a BMW for the dynamics (rather than the little propeller), then you should test drive both cars and go from there. In general, snow tires on a RWD will not handle snow and ice as well as a AWD on snow tires.
 

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This is my first foray into this sort of car. I researched for months and found myself really turned off on the 330. I really like gadgets, and the luxurious interior of the IS sold it for me.

I picked my new 350 up two days ago and, I can assure you, driving your own is 1000X more exciting than a test drive. I'm sure this holds true for the BMW as well.

There are some questions about how an IS handles vs a 330. I found that the sports package resolved those issues for me.

I have a friend who is anti-gadget. He needs 4 tires, a steering wheel and a radio. This makes him a BMW sort of guy. We were going to Thai for lunch yesterday. I asked him where it is and he said just go that way. I hit the talk button and said "Nearest Thai Restaurant". He immediately said "NO WAY!". Sure enough, the voice came back "Finding nearest Thai restaurant." Sure enough, it found Chadra, in San Ramon, CA, exactly where my buddy was taking us. That is just a miniscule sample of the gadgets this car has to offer.

This is a tough place to get this sort of advice. You'll get an opposite response from the BMW forum. What I can tell you is that the IS is a remarkable car and you won't be sorry if that ends up being your decision.
 

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I personally don't like a lot of gadgets, especially if they're something new. If I'm buying a sports car, I look purely at engine first, then luxury, then finally the little-bitty gadgets.

More gadgets = more problems for you in the future.
 

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Do you love driving? If so, then there is no comparison. The 330 handles so much better; the powerband so much smoother. But, the IS is much more luxurious and comfortable.
You also have to deal with it's feminine aesthetics and the negative prestige of it being a Toyota.
 

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Go test drive it. From what I have been told, the 330xi handles quite differently than the 330i w/ sports package.
 

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TwoStroke said:
I hit the talk button and said "Nearest Thai Restaurant". He immediately said "NO WAY!". Sure enough, the voice came back "Finding nearest Thai restaurant." Sure enough, it found Chadra, in San Ramon, CA, exactly where my buddy was taking us. That is just a miniscule sample of the gadgets this car has to offer.
Oh man, I can't wait to get this car. That is so awesome.

(I'm a gadget geek too).
 
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