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03-31-2004, 06:53 PM
For those of you that were able to get a test drive, how did you go about doing it? I get the 'you gotta buy it to test drive it'. Maybe I need to go to a large market like Houston/Dallas? This is getting frustrating since I'm trying to decide between the V and a used '00/01 M5 which I have gotten to drive.

03-31-2004, 07:42 PM
Ask them, "How do I know if I want to buy it if I can't test drive it?" Ask them to buy shoes with out trying them on first. You can also ask them if they are going to risk a commission on 50k for a 5min test drive. I hate some sales men! Or if all else fails, ask to speak to the sales manager. I never had a problem with test-driving, and I'm only 24 years old.

03-31-2004, 08:27 PM
Definitely good things to point out. I figured it would be a non-issue since I haven't had any problems w/ test driving the imports, but I guess the Caddy sales folks I met are a proud of their stuff. However, come to think of it, I had a similar problem with Ford sales folks and their SVT products. It must be my approach...LOL


03-31-2004, 10:18 PM

What do you think of the new BMW 5/6/7 series?

Just curious...

03-31-2004, 10:23 PM
I had the exact same problem. I stayed in touch with the salesman (he did let me sit in one at the outset). I told him there was no way I would buy it without test driving it. Because I stayed in touch, he knew I was serious. And then someone canceled a purchase, so they let me test drive the car (I thought it was great, BTW). The problem from the dealer's perspective is that there are not many of these cars around and a lot of people do not want a car with any miles on it. But if they see that your serious, you will likely get a chance to drive one. I am pretty sure I will buy a V but am waiting for the 2005 model.

03-31-2004, 11:48 PM
I guess I have one question. Were these cars pre-sold? I know that we do not let the pre-sold cars be test driven, other than to perform the mechanical inspection and to fill them with gas. The stock cars that are not pre-sold were able to be test driven, a salesperson did have to accompany the customer on the test drive. Given the type of vehicle this is, that does not seem unreasonable to be. Of course, in this area a different dealer had a customer total a brand new Corvette on the interstate while test driving it not too long ago. I do agree that these cars cannot be truly appreciated for what they are until you drive it.

04-01-2004, 12:27 AM
I definitely prefer the exterior style of previous generation of the 5-/7-series. BMW went a tad too extreme for my tastes. I even prefer the E39 M5 over the E60 M5. Too bad they didn't put the 500hp powerplant into the E39. I like the updated interiors, though, but haven't heard great things about the I-Drives, especially in the 7.

I haven't seen a 6-series up close, but the pics look nice. Definitely better than the old 6.

04-01-2004, 01:05 AM
I completely understand that the dealer wants as few miles on the car as possible before selling it. I know that's the way I want it, also. That's why I would be happy to drive it only down the street and back. I want to get a basic feel for the car, and I'm almost certain I can get it even with such a brief drive.

I'll probably just wait for the '05s, too, since it sounds like they'll be here soon. Of course, that also opens up the possibility that I may find a deal on a used M5 that I can't pass up. What a problem to have!

04-01-2004, 01:18 AM
According to the sales people, the cars were available for sale. If I had been told that they were pre-sold, I would never have asked to drive one - maybe look at one but not drive one. I have no objections if a sales person rides along on the test drive, especially since it's limited production. I even asked one if he could drive it and let me ride shotgun but w/ no luck.

04-01-2004, 01:37 AM
What do you think about the CTS-V?

04-01-2004, 07:25 AM
I see your point then, I was curious because we have had folks ask to drive ones that we got that were pre-sold. Some understood that we were not going to let them drive a car that someone else had already purchased, some did not. I do not understand why they would not want to show a customer what this car can do. Hmm.

04-01-2004, 08:26 AM
Those are my choices too, the V or an M5. Right now I lean more to the V, but like you, if I got a sweet deal on a 2001 or so M5, it would be hard to turn down.

04-01-2004, 11:21 AM
Hi Geo.

It's a GREAT car. We had to go to a race track to drive it.
We have one in stock that was used an one of those events and can be driven (up the block...). Sounds like you may have to take a little trip though. Where are you located.

On the subject of no test drives. It's quite simple and you've already touched on it in one of your other posts. Aside from the safety issues, the buyers for these cars, just like the XLR buyers are paying a premium and expect to drive THEIR car from mile one.

04-01-2004, 07:29 PM
The CTS-V looks like how I envisioned the CTS would be before it 1st came out. It looks much more aggresive. But the main reason why I have been drawn to the CTS-V is the LS6. W/o it, I probably would've bought another vehicle by now.

As for the interior, it doesn't have the feel of the BMW (nor my Acura for that matter), but I like the standard amenities. Plus, there's definitely more room than the BMW. Too bad there's no telescoping steering wheel, though.

04-01-2004, 07:33 PM
I heard about a track day in Dallas but the day after it happened. I would've tried to make it if I would've known about it beforehand and if it was open to non-sales folks. BTW, I'm in the Austin area.

04-07-2004, 10:24 AM
Come on over and test drive a V...We have 2 available (1 Black and 1 Platinum) here in Charlotte, with more coming in!!!! Call me at 704-531-9700....Bill Evans

04-14-2004, 12:30 AM
Well, I got to finally test drive a CTS-V (Black Raven/ebony w/ sunroof) since the dealer had 2 in-stock and unspoken for. If that weren't great enough, I drove it right after I test drove a low-mileage '00 M5 (LeMans Blue w/ black leather/blue alcantera). I must say I enjoyed driving both! Both had great power at all RPMs. I liked the deep sound of the LS6 a little better from the inside during acceleration. The M5 felt more nimble but also gave a slightly harsher ride since I felt plenty of the road imperfections.

On the inside, I felt that the M5 had a better quality interior, but the NAV on the V was impressive. I thought there would be more space in the back seats in the V, but I didn't notice an advantage.

The V has the warranty advantage since it's new, but the M5 has the BMW extended warranty to 6yrs/100k. I don't think the clutch is included on the M5 warranty, though, which I understand could be a weak link. Pricewise, the M5 is about $4k less than the MSRP V. Decisions, decisions...

04-14-2004, 07:26 AM
I am in a similar dilemma. Note that the BMW extended warranty does not cover that much (it is NOT an extension of the original bumper to bumper warranty). It is more for catastrophic stuff. It does not cover the clutch. I thought the BMW handled a bit better too, though I thought the V was a bit faster, especially in first gear. Do you agree? The V is a little more up to date, in dash CD player, more up to date nav system. The BMW struck me as more refined.

04-14-2004, 01:20 PM
After reading the various M5 boards, my main concerns on a used M5 are the VANOS and the clutch. The CPO warranty should cover the VANOS, but the clutch would be ~$1100. I suppose that's not overly excessive. Since I'll be driving about 25k mi/yr, an extend warranty to 100k on the V would be an advantage. I expect to keep the car until the wheels fall off, but if I had to unexpectedly get rid of the car, which would be hold its value better after say 4 yrs/100k of driving?

The V did feel like it had more torque at lower RPMs, but once the VANOS kicked in, it was a wash. Both have plenty of torque for my needs. The dealer told me the 1st-4th shifting on the V only occurs between 15-20 mph. Below or above, 2nd is accessible.

The V's exterior & interior are both more up-to-date, but the M5's classic looks are just as appealing to me. I'm not much of an audiophile and don't change CDs too often so the in-dash CD isn't much of an issue. I do like the V's Nav, especially since you can view the map at a slight angle rather than directly from above. Plus, the LCD is much bigger than the '00 M5's. I like the various readings from the V's instrument cluster - very cool! And yes, refined is a good descriptor for the M5.

Decisions, decisions... What a dilemma to have!

04-14-2004, 01:23 PM
Thanks for the offer, but I got to drive one locally.

04-14-2004, 11:36 PM
The clutch isn't particularly an issue on the M5. Some people can kill any clutch. There were a batch of early '01s that were bad from the factory, but I expect those have all been swapped out by now.

The M5 has a number of little weaknesses, all E39s suffer creaky and fast-wearing door seals and HVAC final-stage resistor failures and disappearing pixels in the instrument-cluster alpha display and the M5s are prone to cam-position sensor failures. It'd be rare to find an early M5 that'd gotten through its warranty period without most of those items being redone under warranty. M5s do not seem to be particularly susceptible to catalyst failures, unlike the 540i on which it seems to be pretty much expected. Rear sway bar brackets fail, and are pretty much guaranteed to fail with a Dinan or other aftermarket rear bar - get some of the BeastPower billet brackets in that case. There have been VANOS actuator failures but they're not particularly common. The VANOS causes a rattle in early M5s, BMW issued an electric priming pump as a service-kit to quiet them down, later a little Accusump-type accumulator that became production on I think the '02 cars, but the rattle isn't a reliability issue and I've never had either of the fixes done.

I find the E39 back seat a little more comfortable than the CTS, it's got fractionally more headroom (my head hits the glass in the Caddy.) Your width will likely determine which car's front seats you're more comfortable with; the M5's seats are great if you're < 200lb, but quite snug if you're not. Both cars have a good driving position but visibility over the E39's snout is a little better.

General material quality in the Bimmer is better, but the Cadillac isn't bad. Early M5s can be updated to the later DVD-based/widescreen nav for a couple grand, but the Cadillac's system is still five years newer in design, far broader in features, and a lot prettier.

The LS6 vs S62 is pretty much a tossup. I suspect the M5's gear spacing is a little better suited to 150mph cruising. The CTS-V has the kind of brakes that M5 owners have to pay $4K to get in the aftermarket. It also has that set of switchable stability-control modes that M5 owners (so far) can't get at any price.

Dealer - Hota
04-18-2004, 01:09 AM
I haven't tried it with the V, but I have with other "high-demand" cars.

Call the dealership and say, "I'm going to be back in town between business trips on XXX and I'm scheduling appointments at several dealerships. I'd like to schedule an appointment with you to test drive your CTS-V."

04-18-2004, 09:04 AM
I don't know if it's the case w/ the CTS-V or not, but on the Vette's (that use the same tranny) you can eliminate that 1st to 4th skip-shift relatively easily. Search the net and see what you can find. I'll bet they make something (or will w/in the next few months) for the Caddy, as well.


04-26-2004, 11:44 PM
and they have had time to make it better and better each year.

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