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    would you consider a VW Passat as alternative

    to an X3 3.0si sport, premium, 6MT. The fully loaded FWD Passat WAGON an avail 6MT and sports package. Its handling is bound to be more carlike as it wieghs about 500 # less. Its 2.0T puts out 200 hp and with a chip alone will do 240 - 250 hp. it gets 22/31 mpg. stock 0-60 is about 7.0 so with a chip it close to the x3. fully loaded cost is about $33,000, 10k to $15k less than a x3. its got more inside room front and rear and more cargo space, 36 vs. 30 cf. had to ask?

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    Nope - do you want to take your car offroad?

    If you never intend to do so and snow depth isn't a point of concern then you are quite right to ask this question. And I would add that I would certainly be taking a test drive to see which one I liked better given how I want to use the car I am buying.

    The Passat is not a vehicle I would want to spend time with off of the pavement so it wasn't a contender for my own purchase.

    My $0.02 worth and probably not worth much more....

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    off road? very little. snow? seldom.

    I have had my Audi off (paved) road a few times and in snow three days. Its fine as long as the snow isnt deep or your not climbing rocks. my prioroties will be on road but it would be nice to have the trailer hitch for a rear mounted bike rack?

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    definitely no

    Think resale and reliablity. It'd be a bad investment. Here's a more sound alternative, Toyota Rav4 V6. Equal power and acceleration, ability to off-road, more room, more reliable, $15K less than X3. Negatives are barn door in rear, doesn't handle as well, options list does not compare (i.e. can't get xenons, nav, etc.), and it's not a BMW.
    <table width=100% style=font-face:arial;font-size:9pt><tr><td width=100%></td><td>jms_w</td></tr>
    <tr><td/><td><span style=cursor:help title='Steptronic, Sport Package, Moonroof, Heated Seats, Bi-Xenon Headlights'>'03 330ci Orient Blue | Black</span></td><td align=right><span style=cursor:help title='Tiptronic, Premium Package, Sport Package, Cold-weather Package, BOSE stereo, ESP, Xenon Headlights'>'01.5 A4 1.8TQ Silver | Onyx</span></td></tr><tr><td></td><td colspan=2><span style=cursor:help *******=alert('330ci Mods: AC Schnitzer pedals, footrest, handbrake; M3 power-fold mirrors, M3 lip spoiler, Z4 autodim rearview mirror, clear bumper lens, Solaris InvisiBulbs, titanium steering trim, euro center console, custom PDC, custom HomelinknA4 Mods: S4 wheels, RS4 grill, painted lower trim, OEM SS exhaust tips')></span></td></tr></table><script></script>

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    are you saying you would buy the RAV4 over

    the X3? sorry, not me. three things, handling, no MT and not german engineered.

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    for me, maybe

    but I'd love to just get an X3 with sport in silver gray, just like Rick in Prescott. Anyway, I'm just saying that, remembering that cars are already depreciating assets, the Passat would be a bad investment, esp. a six-speed that would be difficult to sell when practically every family that buys a Passat wants an automatic. Also based on past reliability and the fact that VW dealers are notorious for lousy service. It's something to think about. I understand that you want to save money but if you're going to do it, get into something that holds its value.
    <table width=100% style=font-face:arial;font-size:9pt><tr><td width=100%></td><td>jms_w</td></tr>
    <tr><td/><td><span style=cursor:help title='Steptronic, Sport Package, Moonroof, Heated Seats, Bi-Xenon Headlights'>'03 330ci Orient Blue | Black</span></td><td align=right><span style=cursor:help title='Tiptronic, Premium Package, Sport Package, Cold-weather Package, BOSE stereo, ESP, Xenon Headlights'>'01.5 A4 1.8TQ Silver | Onyx</span></td></tr><tr><td></td><td colspan=2><span style=cursor:help *******=alert('330ci Mods: AC Schnitzer pedals, footrest, handbrake; M3 power-fold mirrors, M3 lip spoiler, Z4 autodim rearview mirror, clear bumper lens, Solaris InvisiBulbs, titanium steering trim, euro center console, custom PDC, custom HomelinknA4 Mods: S4 wheels, RS4 grill, painted lower trim, OEM SS exhaust tips')></span></td></tr></table><script></script>

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    not really looking to save money.....

    if it was I would have kept our old 528it. actually the driving force is the car/wagon vs. SUV debate. I am not a big SUV fan. You have good points aobut the depreciation of the VW. If it were a MT BMW it would be a different story. I just sold my 528it 5MT in two seeks for $4 over private party blue book!

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    right on

    Good luck in your decision. I hope you meant $4K, not $4... I just test drove an '07 X3 with SP today and I've gotta to say I loved it! The 528it has more room than the X3, why not a 5-series wagon again but AWD?
    <table width=100% style=font-face:arial;font-size:9pt><tr><td width=100%></td><td>jms_w</td></tr>
    <tr><td/><td><span style=cursor:help title='Steptronic, Sport Package, Moonroof, Heated Seats, Bi-Xenon Headlights'>'03 330ci Orient Blue | Black</span></td><td align=right><span style=cursor:help title='Tiptronic, Premium Package, Sport Package, Cold-weather Package, BOSE stereo, ESP, Xenon Headlights'>'01.5 A4 1.8TQ Silver | Onyx</span></td></tr><tr><td></td><td colspan=2><span style=cursor:help *******=alert('330ci Mods: AC Schnitzer pedals, footrest, handbrake; M3 power-fold mirrors, M3 lip spoiler, Z4 autodim rearview mirror, clear bumper lens, Solaris InvisiBulbs, titanium steering trim, euro center console, custom PDC, custom HomelinknA4 Mods: S4 wheels, RS4 grill, painted lower trim, OEM SS exhaust tips')></span></td></tr></table><script></script>

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    Yes | No

    Apples to Oranges comparison

    The VW should be compared to the 3 series wagon, not the X3. Enjoy your new VW.
    -Rick
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    actually the 3 wagon cargo area is tiny. so as

    far as cargo area the Passat and X3 are much closer. and yes apples to oranges. but certainly worth comparing. we comapred the x3, 3 wagon , 5 wagon and x5, as well as the new Q7. they are all different - but we want to find which one fits us best. the X5 and Q7 were too large. the 3 wagon MUCH too small.

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    Yes | No

    I think wagon cross shopping makes sense

    We did the same. I'm not a fan of front wheel drive though. You can't get the 4Motion in a 6-speed right? 4Motion, 6-speed and 3.6 would be a real contender. Might be worth checking out the deals on a Volvo V70R wagon. Big MSRP but they deal on those like crazy. But for all-around abilities, its hard to beat the X3.

    Rick



    '04 Jet Black 3.0 6-speed, PP,terracotta, xenons, premium sound, PDC, heated seats, privacy glass, sat prep., Dinan strut tower brace, Y-Spoke, Goodyear Eagle F1 - 235/50/18 F, 255/45/18 R (Dunlop Wintersport M3s for winter).

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    yes a 4MO 3.6 Passat wagon with 6MT would

    be hot. I am not a big fan of FWD either .....or Volvo's for that matter. Just looking for any reasons to see if we should even test drive a Passat wagon or just order the X3.

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