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04-01-2004, 03:55 PM
I lean to the V though I am also considering a used M5. Out of curiosity, looking down the line to when the car is out of warranty, how do Cadillac and BMW compare in terms of repair costs? BMW's are always high (new clutch around $1100). Is Cadillac as bad?

04-02-2004, 12:42 PM
A good rule of thumb for BMWs is to assume that you will spend 10% of the cost of the car on service. Obviously this doesn't hold true for the first 3 years, because BMW includes scheduled maintenance.

Anyway, I would assume that on an M5 that is just out of warranty, you could expect to pay a couple grand a year, depending on condition of the car and how well you keep it. Bear in mind that my estimate also includes the cost of replacement tires (which go quickly on the M5). I think I got about 13K miles on my first set for the M5 and only 12K on the rears for my M3.


'03 M3

04-02-2004, 03:50 PM
When you say 'BMWs are always high' - what are you basing that on? Where are you located? Is your $1100 a dealership price or an independent?

In the SF Bay Area, with dealer shop rates in the $100/hr range, $1100 for a clutch job sounds fairly cheap.

Some M5 parts are very expensive, but BMW parts in general aren't too bad, not nearly as bad as typical Toyota, etc.

04-03-2004, 12:17 AM
"....but BMW parts in general aren't too bad, not nearly as bad as typical Toyota, etc."

WHere the heck does THAT come from and who would belive THAT??

Come on, some objectivity here...I would love it to be true but ain't gonna tell this guy that parts for a car that sells in the hundreds per year cost as much as a mass produced cheap box sold in MILLIONS....

Come on....

04-03-2004, 02:13 AM
What's this hundreds?

BMW builds 300K 5-series a year.

M5s were a 2000-unit-a-year item, but only so many parts were model-specific.

The CTS-V is only a 3500-unit-a-year vehicle, and engine internals aside, most of its drivetrain parts are every bit as model-unique as the M5's are.

Dealers have a lot of flexibility in parts pricing, and I've had far better luck in getting decent prices out of the Bimmer folks than out of any of the local Toyota sodomizers.

04-03-2004, 09:59 PM
Plug the part# for the items you are concerned about into and check pricing.

For example a complete LS6 long block;

04-03-2004, 11:59 PM

04-04-2004, 12:25 AM
Where do you obtain your dependability data???

Even if you discount the cost of ownership the higher residual value is still offset by the higher purchase price. A BMW has about a 5% higher residual for a $55,000 M3 vs a $50,000 CTSV.

Either car will depreciate close to $26,000 after 3 years.

04-04-2004, 04:17 PM
LS6 drivetrain rare? Look at all the aftermarket parts. Look at all the vendors that sell GM factory parts at discounts. There are only a few differences between an LS1 and an LS6. Saying the V's drivetrain is rare is truley laughable.

04-04-2004, 08:07 PM

04-04-2004, 08:37 PM
The Automotive Lease Guide is about as real world as you get.

Where do you get your info???

According to ALG Cadillac ranks on par with Acura MDX,TL,TSX, Audi A4, A6, A8, TT, and BMW 7 Series, X3, X5.

04-05-2004, 01:06 AM
The LS6 longblock in the CTS-V is (probably) pretty much the same as the Z06 gets.

But everything else is different, from the accessory mountings to the bellhousing (which might be a Camaro/Holden part) to the (every bit as exotic as a BMW's, may even come from the same manufacturer) dual-mass flywheel and clutch, etc.

Some of those bits are fairly cheap, some of them are I expect quite pricey.

The parts pricing ought to be out there now, someone should be able to price out items like the clutch, the transmission (no two T-56 applications are alike, it seems.)

I'm sure the price on one of those brake calipers will make someone fall over.

04-05-2004, 12:19 PM
There are parts that are NOT shared with other 5-series.

For example, if you need a bumper, that is a specific part to the M5 NOT all 5-series. That's what you were asked about. There are a lot more inside that you don't even see and are unique to the M5.

The person asked about an M5, not just any 5-series which mostly sells in I6 configs. 525i 530i and so on.

The question was specific and you answered it like the M5 was a common commuter car. It ain't and there is a huge difference in price stucture based on caliber of the brand and supply and demand. It ain't a toyota and it ain't a Caddy.

04-05-2004, 02:07 PM
YEs, Cadillacs depreciate very quickly. And a 2001 STS sells for less than a 2001 540. But the STS cost less when it was new. 40-50K sticker for the Caddy(with actual transaction prices lower than that) v. 50-60K sticker for the 540 (with actual transaction prices not much off sticker).

So as a percentage of what they sold for new, the Caddy and the 540 depreciate at nearly the same rate.

It's like when you see a 4 year old 750il selling for a TON less than it cost new. That's because it cost a TON when it was new, so applying the same % depreciation to a bigger number, you will naturally get a bigger number.

04-05-2004, 02:08 PM

04-05-2004, 04:21 PM
I have driven 5 series BMW (not the M) for the past two decades. I have driven my new V for the past two weeks. To argue witch is the best is like trying to choose between the two most beautiful women I have dated. Who cares! I feel fortunate for having the experience. Every time I jump on the V I smile. Why choose?

04-05-2004, 09:36 PM
The M5 and the V are two great cars to drive. You can nit-pick the differences, but from a performance perspective it is hard to see how one would be disappointed with either one.

04-05-2004, 10:17 PM
Did cadillac do something to harm you or your family? If you don't like the car thats okay just stick with audiworld where you will find others that may be more inline with your views. If would like to provide constructive feedback and conversation I welcome your comments.

James Taylor
04-06-2004, 01:03 AM
Since Cadillac is sourcing T56 parts for multiple years, parts shouldn't be an issue. The T56 is used in numerous cars (Viper, Aston Martin, Ford Cobra etc. ) and the internals are very similar except for the ratios specified. Bell housing for a Chevy small block would be easiest to find since they use them in Vettes.

LS6 engine components will be easy. Remember that the base Chevy small block has been developed for many years and parts interchangability is truely astounding. The problem with BMWs is not the cost of the running gear but electronic failures in a very complex, and in my mind overloaded, system.

I am interested in keeping a CTS-V for many years and many miles. If you don't want a BWM repair nightmare simply lease it.

I really do not try to compare a M5 and CTS-V head to head. The BWM is far more luxurious but lacks the bottom end torque that an American V8 delivers. It is smoother but in my opinion not as fun to drive. The CTS-V provides the fun of a BMW M3 with the practicality of a four door coupe.

A good analogy is the difference between a ZO6 vette and my Gen 1 Viper. Both have 400 HP and 6 speeds but are very different in execution and driving experience. The Viper, although not as "refined" is alot more fun to drive. Just my opinion though. My '92 Viper is the #53rd made and has quirks that were resolved in later years. The CTS-V will be further refined in a couple of years. In the mean time enjoy the ride!

04-06-2004, 11:26 AM
There's comparatively few elements in the M5 that are (a) very different from other 5ers (and you missed the biggest point of all, the whole front suspension/steering/subframe of the V8 E39s is borrowed from the E38 7er and is different from the 6-cylinder cars) and (b) considerably more expensive. Go price an M5 front bumper cover, it's not bad.

The engine is very expensive, the transmission pretty pricey as well, but the rest of the bits aren't really that bad relative to other 5s.

Of course, none of it looks bad compared to some of what Audi gets away with. Audis are remarkable vehicles, their engineers never believe in using one part when three will do the job.

Now, back to the CTS-V. The engine is cheap (about 1/3 the price of an M5's S62 longblock?) the transmission fairly cheap (a little over half the price of an M5/Supra Turbo Getrag box, that's why Tremec moved everything to Mexico when they bought out Borg-Warner's transmission operation) but I wouldn't expect that price advantage to hold for the rest of the car.

04-06-2004, 12:32 PM
Not to mention.....I'm sure BMW has a better resale than a chevy but tell that to an LT1 Impala SS owner.

04-06-2004, 10:59 PM

04-06-2004, 11:02 PM
BMW's electronics are no more complex than Cadillac's. The E39 cars have some well-known and specific problems, but by and large they always occur early while the car's under warranty.

For what it's worth, the M5 has big, lovely gobs of torque, you just need to hit the 'sport' mode button to kill the throttle delay.

04-08-2004, 12:06 AM
agreeing with your view point. The fact that someone pretends that "BMW parts cost less than a Toyota" is perfectly sensible statement for you and people who think that is incorrect are not being .."constructive" and are "negative"

what are you guys smoking in this post?? Is it the Nascar stuff again?!?!?...

But you know what. I probably should not bother posting any corrections or wake up calls and let you guy revel in illusions and erroneous bliss in the so-called GREATNESS of the Cadillac...

I have one word for you...Newfound...For the longest time Cadillac didn't have a great line up...(not a great car since the 50's and 60's if you ask me) and only recently with the awakening have started seeing decent cars out. So wait a bit before you indulge. Let's see how it all works out in a couple of years.

People don't have to like them and certainly don't have to agree with you.

This is a board where a lot of people know their cars and feel insulted when they see a silliness grow legs fast on these boards. Regardless of their fandom and loyalties. I like Caddies and I'd buy one in a heartbeat. Across the board. But to perpetrate untruths and illusions is a disservice to everone and everything, including, YOU, Sir.

04-08-2004, 07:30 AM
I would agree that there "will be" a small number of BMW/Audi trolls to contend with on the Roadfly forum. Remember this board is primarily dominated by BMW/Audio owners so they see us for now as on their turf. Some positioning in the name of "being informative and enlightened will occur". These enlightened feel an obligation to share their enlightenment with the rest of us "the poor misinformed".

The enlightened expect and generally attempt to provoke response so a further enlightenment by them of us can occur. These posts are really entertaining and I would not discourage any of "the enlightened" to continue posting.

04-08-2004, 07:15 PM
I agree, but is it really necessary to make derogatory personal statements? Most of the people who post here are truly interested, and from personal observation, appear to be more personally familiar with the offerings of other manufacturers(many of you own, or have owned them) than some of the negativity posters. I have to agree with Nupeskee on the negativity when it is aimed at a person. Then again, most of us are here to share information, not insults, so shall we just consider the source??

04-09-2004, 03:33 PM
This is NOT an exclusively BMW/ AUdi space. It is for people who care about cars. Or even want to know more about a particular car or issue.

I'd like to think about it as a good repositaory of good , useful and TRUE info.

What gets a lot going here is a lot of blowhards going off how Caddy or BMW or Audi is the greatest thing since sliced bread.

Post accurate info and no one will contest that, but rather thank you for it.

When you respond to some erroneous info and try to correct it, then people come out swinging at ya and accusing you of hating their brand.

No it ain't so! Just say some realistic and correct things. That's all. Be informed and inform others. Don't just tut your horn on hot air.

One example..."BMW parts are cheaper than Toyotas'"

Go figure...Who would belive that?? and when you respond, " You hate Caddy and have an 'agenda'"

ANyway, keep it fun and keep it real...

04-10-2004, 12:03 AM
The point I was trying to make was that some of your posts have been prefaced with subject lines that strike initally as personal attacks,ie."what are you smoking?" The arguments posed are good, but I think the impression given is probably different than intended.

As to repair cost comparison, the repair costs for a BMW are generally higher than a Cadillac, mostly due to parts prices. The post regarding Toyota was not entirely out of line. When comparing costs as a percentage of the purchase price, BMW fares better in general. Many of the parts common to Lexus also are priced the same for a Toyota. As a percentage of the vehicle cost, these parts are more expesive to have repaired on a Toyota than a Lexus.

Maintenance costs will vary depending on the model and on the area you are in, whether it is included in the vehicle price, and length of ownership. In general, most foreign(non-US) makes have more maintenance requirements for their vehicles, and are therefore more expensive.

These observations are from experience dealing with GM,Ford/L-M,Chrysler,Nissan,Mitsubishi,Isuzu,Hyundai and BMW warranty claims processing, and customer pay repairs.

04-10-2004, 04:10 AM
What is insulting is a very obviously erroneous claim. It is insulting to our intelligence to hear such distortion. Period.

I appreciate you tring to make it clearer. But I am corry it cannot be rationalized and explained away.

If I buy an M5 and My brother owns for example a BMW dealership, I can fix the car for 10% of what you pay. Does that make it a rational expalnation for a wider sample? NO.
Please don't insisit on this.

You are not going to convince most people that a BMW bumper cost less than a Toyota. It just defies everyday experience. ANd I was part of the industry.

I understand some people will take exception to that and some people have ways of getting for cheaper and some people live in Kansas where the labor cost per hour is lower than that of San Fransisco. But comparing apples to apples, it does not stand.

We are not dealing with subjective opinion on who likes a design or not. We are dealing with straight economies of scale and different market segments and strategies.

This would be my final response on the matter.

Good luck.

04-10-2004, 10:17 AM
I would have to agree on the discounting and location issues. I guess the differences have been that some comparisons are raw dollars, and some are as a percentage of the cost of the vehicle. Also, it will depend on the type of repair. In a couple of posts, the body parts issue are used for reasons, and some the mechanical issues. As far as body parts go, the premium line vehicles WILL be more expensive, you are absolutely correct. My main reference was aimed at the mechanical side. With Toyota and Honda, some of the part pricing on the shared components is higher, so it appears that the owner of the lower price brand enjoys the same cost for the same repair on a Lexus or Acura. In actual dollars, cost would be the same, but as a percentage of the price of the vehicle, it would be higher. The cost basis I was using was not at "inside" or discounted prices. The warranty cost basis is actually more balanced than on the retail end, since most manufacturers use the same cost structure, adjusted to compensate for labor variations, while the geographic area can affect costs due to labor costs, land prices, etc.

I think the apples to apples issue is the source of contention in this thread, mechanical vs. body, and the size of the "sample" used for comparison. Most of the posts appear to be from a personal experience viewpoint, and not intended as a blanket statement. Since this forum has drawn people from the industry, as well as consumer only, I suspect that is where some of the confusion lies.

Have a great weekend!!

04-10-2004, 12:36 PM
Regarding my comment that BMW parts prices are cheaper than Toyota: I invite you to check it out.

An E39 front bumper cap is $300 RETAIL. An E39 540i radiator is under $200.

A driver-door window switch for an '88 Celica was $400 the last time I looked.

As I said, it's not true 100% across the board, but it's been true often enough in my experience.

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