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Discussion Starter #1
330i:
The styling of the E90 isn't too much different from the E46 except for the HIDEOUS rear. The interior is a step up from the E46 but it's still outdated. The rear seating was comfortable enough for two adults. Upon getting into the 330i's driver seat, I hear a wonderful engine tone that welcomes any enthusiast. The throttle is responsive and quick, and the brakes....better than the IS300(Which I thought were wonderful). The sales guy takes me towards an S curve, and this thing just carves it fearlessly at 70MPH or so. The car provided more than enough power to accelerate out of a corner. Wonderful 1st time experience driving a BMW.


IS350:
This car is gorgeous in person. The lines flow smoothly, but not as aggressive as the IS300. First thing I notice and am extremely disappointed with is that HID is NOT standard. The rear seats are smaller than the 330i, but not by much. Maybe by 2 inches or so. Headroom isn't the greatest either. This thing is QUIET! Not much can be heard until WOT. And god damn is this thing QUICK! RPMs jump like a tweaker jumping on free tweak. I come to a nice turn and am disappointed by how it handled, there was a lot more body roll compared to the 330i and just didn't feel as stable as the 330i. Wonderful drive as well.

Conclusion:
330i is a better enthusiast car, and it is true what everyone else is saying about the IS350, its more of a sporty cruiser than sports sedan. The IS350 is a better buy for the money but the 330i is just a better car even if it is slower.

P.S. anybody in the OC looking for a test drive, head up to Westminster Lexus and ask for Ralph. Very friendly and didn't mind my aggressive driving style. He said, "You need to get a feel of the car", so I did :D



Chan
 

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I agree....classic.

I'm surprised you were able to start the E90 on the first try. lol They're currently experiencing electrical issues. As for handling on the IS, I'm sure the sports package will fix that....this is probably why the IS is priced so low...all the good stuff are options (which'll just bring it to the 330's price range). Having mentioned that, it's probably a better way to compare the two...matching similarly priced vehilces. Either that, or note the extra change you'll have for upgrades on your IS.
 

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Chan said:
330i:

Conclusion:
330i is a better enthusiast car, and it is true what everyone else is saying about the IS350, its more of a sporty cruiser than sports sedan. The IS350 is a better buy for the money but the 330i is just a better car even if it is slower.


Chan
I am not so sure on the value of is350 anymore. The pricing is very similar to 330i
 

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bobbo said:
I am not so sure on the value of is350 anymore. The pricing is very similar to 330i
You still get more features than a 330i:

*Backup camera with the Nav
*More HP
*Ventilated seats
*in-dash cd changer
*More airbags
*Passanger memory seat (is this true in the IS? thats what I thought I'd read)

Am I missing something? I too am considering the 330i vs IS350 and want to make sure I have the facts right.

I configured an IS350 and a 330i with roughly the same options and came out with these prices (all MSRP) See below for my configs:
330i = $46,345
IS350 = $42,469 (saves $3,876 or 8%)

IS350 is 8% cheaper than 330i (MSRP) with quite a few more features. On paper I'd say the IS wins everytime. I'm trying to stay impartial and not count any of the "feelings" a car gives, but I'm pretty sold on the IS on paper.

330i:
-Cold weather package
-Premium package
-Sport package
-Automatic tranny
-Comfort Access
-Nav system

IS350:
-Nav (no ML)
-Sport package
-Preferred Accessory Package
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Get over the features, I'll tell you straight up. The 330i straight up drives better than the IS350. Maybe this'll change with the sport package, but I highly doubt that.



Chan
 

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Chan said:
Get over the features, I'll tell you straight up. The 330i straight up drives better than the IS350. Maybe this'll change with the sport package, but I highly doubt that.
Probably true. But to some (like me) I don't care. To me the more features, electronics, toys, the better.
 

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very nice review. i think that the 330i's interior is to plain but thats just my 2 cents.... can't wait to test drive the is350.
 

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Bukwheat - where did you read about the start/stop issues? I've seen a few mentioned of it but nothing solid. Just wondering. Thanks.
 

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Chan said:
Get over the features, I'll tell you straight up. The 330i straight up drives better than the IS350. Maybe this'll change with the sport package, but I highly doubt that.

Chan
So features dont matter and it is all about the handling ability that 85% of buyers really wont utilize in every day driving? If that is the case, why not get a Lotus Elise? It can pimp slap the 330 in any form of handling, is quicker and doesnt have many features which apparently shouldnt matter to people even though logic says they do or car companies wouldnt waste time putting them into their models.

I guess I just have diff driving habits...I use stuff like my dvd-a stereo and other luxury amenities in my car more than taking highspeed turns in my every day drive.

To each their own though
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Rob L said:
So features dont matter and it is all about the handling ability that 85% of buyers really wont utilize in every day driving? If that is the case, why not get a Lotus Elise? It can pimp slap the 330 in any form of handling, is quicker and doesnt have many features which apparently shouldnt matter to people even though logic says they do or car companies wouldnt waste time putting them into their models.

I guess I just have diff driving habits...I use stuff like my dvd-a stereo and other luxury amenities in my car more than taking highspeed turns in my every day drive.

To each their own though
Since you're trying to make things complicated by comparing this to a Lotus let me put it this way. If you like sitting on your couch, get an IS350. If you like to DRIVE your car, get a 330i. Drive both and you'll agree with me.



Chan
 

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i personally think that just to get that driving feel of the BMW is just not worth the ugly rear, the horrendous interior, and the lack of features, not to mention the reliability issue, but we wont' get into that again. i have not test driven the IS yet but from what i hear it's a pretty good handler for day to day driving, and what more do you need, unless you're gonna go on the twisties on a normal basis?
 

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Chan said:
Since you're trying to make things complicated by comparing this to a Lotus let me put it this way. If you like sitting on your couch, get an IS350. If you like to DRIVE your car, get a 330i. Drive both and you'll agree with me.



Chan
I like to drive my couch. What should I do?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
knihc2008 said:
i personally think that just to get that driving feel of the BMW is just not worth the ugly rear, the horrendous interior, and the lack of features, not to mention the reliability issue, but we wont' get into that again. i have not test driven the IS yet but from what i hear it's a pretty good handler for day to day driving, and what more do you need, unless you're gonna go on the twisties on a normal basis?
IS300 is a better handling car.



Chan
 

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I love to drive.
However, I'd gladly buy the IS350 over the 330 if it were available in manual trans with a VDIM disable switch. Why? Because I'd be willing to sacrifice a little handling for the better acceleration, higher quality and lower price. Besides, handling can be improved in the aftermarket.
Sadly, it's all moot because there is no manual trans on the IS350.
Thus, for those who love to drive, buy the BMW (or a G35) or keep your IS300. Heck, if my car gets totalled, I'm just gonna pick up another '02 IS300 - I love this damn car!
 

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Chan said:
Get over the features, I'll tell you straight up. The 330i straight up drives better than the IS350. Maybe this'll change with the sport package, but I highly doubt that.



Chan
Did the 330i have the sport package?

If it did and the IS350 didn't, then it's not a fair comparison.

The 330 is definately going to have better "feel" and "feedback," but body roll on the 350 should be reduced with the sport package, since it drops the car a 1/2" and has stiffer springs.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Norcal IS300 said:
Did the 330i have the sport package?

If it did and the IS350 didn't, then it's not a fair comparison.

The 330 is definately going to have better "feel" and "feedback," but body roll on the 350 should be reduced with the sport package, since it drops the car a 1/2" and has stiffer springs.
Just the luxury package.



Chan
 

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85eliminator said:
I love to drive.
However, I'd gladly buy the IS350 over the 330 if it were available in manual trans with a VDIM disable switch. W
I think that goes for a lot of us - the problem is you can't.
 

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Rob L said:
So features dont matter and it is all about the handling ability that 85% of buyers really wont utilize in every day driving?...
Chan started this thread, and gave a comparison of the 2 cars...what's your purpose for jumping in and defending the IS350 ?

i'm a BMW owner, but will most likely buy an IS350, because I want to, not because YOU think i should :p
 
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