Older BMW 328is or Newer Chevy Impala?

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Which means very little. It is common knowledge that J.D. Powers and others who rate autos (like magazines) have to give a favorable review (or at least NOT unfavorable) or they will not be used in the future or their advertising dollars will increase.
In other words they are bought and paid for!!!!
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JD Powers is a little different than enthusist magazines or Consumer Reports -they are in the survey buisness. They give the public the broad picture stuff and sell the details to the auto manufacturers. They cannot afford to be dishonest if they want to keep selling information to their "Customers." And before you say they are in the pocket of US Manufactuurers, they do a lot of buisness in the Far East, so they can't afford to play favorites.
References:
http://www.jdpower.com/corporate/about/overview/services.asp http://www.jdpower.com/corporate/news/releases/pressrelease.asp?ID 06133 http://www.jdpower.com/corporate/news/releases/pressrelease.asp?ID 06082 http://www.jdpower.com/corporate/news/releases/pressrelease.asp?ID 06100
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Exactly. "Sell the details to the auto manufacturers." I view with a jaundiced eye any firm which gives the public information on manufacturer products while those same manufacturers are their customers. In essence they are being subsidized by the very manufacturers they are evaluating.
No thank you.
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Top-posting troll Mike Hunter wrote:

Maybe because it's a better value, "Mike".
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Those cars are quite different in design. Perhaps you should think more about what type of car you want.
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According to a Canadiandriver.ca (if memory is faithfull), you should avoid Impalas that come with the 3.4L engine. Apparently, they have problems with the head gasket leaking on higher mileage vehicule.

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snipped-for-privacy@cox.net wrote:

Well, I have a 97 328 with 125,000 miles that I will never sell or trade - I think it's that good. My biggest problem is after driving 600 miles in one day, I still don't want to get out and stop for the night. 98 should be at least as good. HOWEVER,
1. At 80,000 on the BMW, you should probably follow Roundel tech advisor Mike Miller's advice to replace thermostat, water pump and radiator on it. I've done that on mine.
2. It likely needs some brake work, unless the mileage is mainly highway.
3. Is it an automatic trans - seem to be lots of problems with these. I have a manual.
Your call. A 60 mile commute is long enough to thoroughly enjoy a BMW, if you're "into it", and if you know a good independent mechanic, repairs should not be too bad, provided you keep up with the maintenance. The impala is a good deal, though, if you like the car - I have no idea as to reliability, and no opinion on the car itself. At 18,000 miles the Impala shouldn't need anything for quite some time, so, obviously the best financial deal.
Frank
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I honestly would try to come up with about $2,000 more and get a new Civic or the like with a warranty.
SO
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SO wrote:

Unless of course you value your life. Driving a 60 mile commute each day in a civic? Not me...
--
-Fred W

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Fred W wrote:

Your likely safer in the Civic than either of those other choices. Size is not the end-all in safety.
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Rick Brandt wrote:

Nonsense. I would take my chances in either the BMW or Chevy over a Civic. You are correct; size is not the only safety factor, but it does figure into the equation as does (even more importantly) weight and how solidly built the car is. There is a reason Civics can reach 40mpg. They are light. If you are a big fan of Hondas, an Accord would be an entirely different story.
--
-Fred W

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Fred W wrote:

Even if the other cars would provide somewhat more protection than the Civic that does not equate to someone "not valuing their life" because they drive a Civic. A new Civic has a five star rating on front impacts (same as the Impala) and both of those are going to have multiple air bags compared to the beemer which would likely have none being that old.
A BIG factor for safety is the ability to avoid the accident in the first place in which case the BMW and Honda are likely to be much better than the pedestrian handling that an Impala provides.
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Rick Brandt wrote:

You cannot compare safety ratings between classes. I five star rating in class relative. IN other words, all else being equal, the bigger heavier vehicle is safer.
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wrote in message

Crash test ratings measure the ability to survive controlled prescribed crash tests, not the ability to protect the occupants in real world situations. That's why Volvo tends to get outscored on those tests -- they base their safety designs on actual accidents, not crash tests.
If I told you that you had to hit an 18 wheeler head on with both of you doing 20MPH and gave you your choice of the 5-series or a civic, are you seriously telling me you'd feel safer in the civic?
Your comment about no airbags in a 1998 BMW shows how little you know about BMWs.

This is the the most correct statement in the post.
Also, the OP sited room to stretch out as a reason to consider the Impala over the E39. Why on earth would he want to fold himself in half to cram into a civic?
-Russ.
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Actually, the debate was between an Impala and a 328. The 328 is over priced--should be something in the range of $7,000-9,500, not $15,000.
In regard to cramming yourself in a Civic, I drive a 50 mile commute every day in a Z4 because I can afford the Z4. If I only had in the range of $15,000 to spend, I'd get something like a new Civic, which I've driven and it isn't the Civic of 20 years, or even one year ago. I don't feel crammed in either car (as you can't drive any car sitting in the back seat, anyway).
Scott O.
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I have no idea how I translated a 328 into a 528 in my head but that is in fact what I did. So point taken there. :-)
A very new Civic isn't much smaller in the front seat than a E46 actually, so I will have to withdraw that part of it. I greatly prefer the layout and feel of the E46 interior mind you, but strictly looking at space, it's not that different.
I have driven last year's civic, which I wouldn't take over my E30 never mind the E46, but I've heard that the 2006 Civic is vastly improved. It seemed a rediculous thing to put against an E39 and an Impala, only slightly less so against the E46 and the Impala, but front seat room would not be the part of it that's rediculous.
Given the choice between the Impala and the Civic, I would probably take the Civic. American cars have this interesting way of seeming nice on a test drive -- lots of power, lots of room, lots of features, comfy seating... but you don't get to really explore the handling and brakes on a test drive and you realise how uncomfortable the seats become after the first hour. You fall out of love with them quickly. Whereas any BMW I've ever driven I've liked more and more as I spent time with it. There are a lot of die hard civic fans out there so I suspect the same is true of them. You don't see a lot of die hard Impala fans. :-)
-Russ.
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SO wrote:

I agree that $15k is too high. The right price is about $12k (depending on where it is). $7000 for a '98 328i would be below wholesale.
--
-Fred W

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Somebody. wrote:

According to InternetAutoGuid.Com...
Front Headroom 2005 Civic 37.8 inches 1998 BMW 3 series 37.8 inches
Front Leg Room Civic 42.2 inches BMW 32.72 inches
Front Shoulder Room Civic 53.1 inches BMW 53.19 inches
I was incorrect about the airbag. For some reason I was thinking of an 1989 BMW not a 1998.
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That's ok, I was thinking of a 528 (E39) not a 328 (E46). :-) Maybe we should both read before posting, lol.
Still, even the lowly 3 series has had airbags basically standard since 1991, long before the Civic. ABS basically standard since 1988. Japan does *not* lead Germany in safety advances very often.
(I say basically because you could probably still order a 316 or something in Europe without it, but in NA they were standard equipmenet which you perhaps could delete by choice)
-Russ.
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Somebody. wrote: [snip]

Just to clarify...I personally would not choose a Civic over the beemer either. I just bristle at the notion conveyed that anyone driving a Civic (or any other smaller) car must have no concern for their own safety. This idea has been largely put forth by people who drive large vehicles and feel guilty about it so they try to assuage their guilt by claiming "safety" is the reason they drive what they drive. I say drive what you want, just don't blow smoke up my ass about why you made your choice.
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