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      11-09-2017, 09:22 PM   #1
1gkek
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Lease ending... so I went to buy a Chevy

The lease is ending on my car and I'm looking for the M235's replacement. I've got a 40K budget, I need car that has more back seat, is comfortable, not boring, and ready to cover some miles. I've been looking online mainly at CPO 5 series' (must have DHP) and CPO Cadillac CTS V-Sports. All well and good.

But then GM dropped another 20% off sale on the Chevy SS and knowing that this is it for those cars, I was sorely tempted. I used to have a G8. It was a tremendous car that I absolutely loved, but it was the wrong car at the wrong time for us, so we didn't keep it long. I've always regretted getting rid of it. So with the longing to re-live my experience with the G8, I headed over to the local Chevy dealer for a test drive ready to put money down and pull the trigger. And then I drove it.

It sounded fantastic - I'm lost for superlatives to describe it - and the magnetic ride suspension was uncanny in its ability to be seamlessly both firm and compliant without feeling artificial. Even on harsh city streets, it just gets on with the business of keeping the car planted comfortably no matter what. But it was missing the engagement, liveliness, and (for lack of a better description) sophistication of the M235. I know it's much bigger and heavier, but it was so unsatisfying to drive. There was just no engagement there like I've got with the M235. I was bitterly disappointed that my old hero, the Holden Commodore/G8/SS just doesn't hold up.

So I drove home and reconfirmed that this M235 I'm about to get rid of is, to me at least, Goldilocks. It's so damn satisfying to drive, whether I'm pushing it briskly or just loping along in traffic. Man they got this car right.
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      11-09-2017, 09:36 PM   #2
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not to mention how insanely unexciting it looks. how was the interior compared to the m235?
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      11-09-2017, 09:52 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aozer View Post
not to mention how insanely unexciting it looks. how was the interior compared to the m235?
Yeah, the Chevy SS is the ultimate sleeper!

Road & Track actually thought the manual SS compared quite favorably to the E39 M5. Maybe apples to oranges since they were comparing a 12 year old car to a brand new one, but still interesting.

http://www.roadandtrack.com/new-cars...-chevrolet-ss/

At 20% off, the SS is definitely tempting if you're looking for an unassuming-looking 4-door 6-speed V8 capable of massive burnouts.
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      11-09-2017, 09:57 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1gkek View Post

But then GM dropped another 20% off sale on the Chevy SS and knowing that this is it for those cars, I was sorely tempted. I used to have a G8. It was a tremendous car that I absolutely loved, but it was the wrong car at the wrong time for us, so we didn't keep it long. I've always regretted getting rid of it. So with the longing to re-live my experience with the G8, I headed over to the local Chevy dealer for a test drive ready to put money down and pull the trigger. And then I drove it.

It sounded fantastic - I'm lost for superlatives to describe it - and the magnetic ride suspension was uncanny in its ability to be seamlessly both firm and compliant without feeling artificial. Even on harsh city streets, it just gets on with the business of keeping the car planted comfortably no matter what. But it was missing the engagement, liveliness, and (for lack of a better description) sophistication of the M235. I know it's much bigger and heavier, but it was so unsatisfying to drive. There was just no engagement there like I've got with the M235. I was bitterly disappointed that my old hero, the Holden Commodore/G8/SS just doesn't hold up.

So I drove home and reconfirmed that this M235 I'm about to get rid of is, to me at least, Goldilocks. It's so damn satisfying to drive, whether I'm pushing it briskly or just loping along in traffic. Man they got this car right.
Hey, the M235i can't do everything. Sounds like you're already sold on the Chevy SS. The performance numbers look pretty good, but it's still a Chevy.

Kind of like the old muscle car days - they go like h*ll, but not a sports coupe, not to mention the crappy MPG. Ha!

Do the Chevy, but I predict you'll be back one day.
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      11-09-2017, 11:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3.0L View Post
Hey, the M235i can't do everything. Sounds like you're already sold on the Chevy SS. The performance numbers look pretty good, but it's still a Chevy.

Kind of like the old muscle car days - they go like h*ll, but not a sports coupe, not to mention the crappy MPG. Ha!

Do the Chevy, but I predict you'll be back one day.
No, the SS is out. I love it for what it is, just not enough to buy one myself. I'll just keep those fond memories of the G8. I'm driving a CTS V-Sport tomorrow which should drive better than the Chevy. The alpha platform is universally lauded.

I've eliminated the 550 as well. I like the power but the N63T reputation is too complicated for me. I'm still looking for the right 535i or 535d. I love the diesel for the economy after having had two other BMW diesel's (328 and the X5), but I've decided I want DHP and would like the multi-contour seats. They pop up occasionally.
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      11-10-2017, 12:30 AM   #6
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Uhh E90 M3.
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      11-11-2017, 06:56 AM   #7
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If you're looking at the CTS-V, consider the V-Sport as well.

Not as dramatic, but an alternative well within your budget.

Just need to put up with CUE...
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      11-11-2017, 10:20 AM   #8
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A buddy bought an SS manual a few months ago. Loves it except MPG is awful. Too bad they didn't use the MPG technology thats in the Vette
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      11-13-2017, 12:53 PM   #9
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As a previous owner of a Cadillac V-Sport my bias is towards that and I own the two door version of the SS as well. The V-Sport will surprise a lot of cars and it just pulls for days... to the legal speed limit of course. It was a perfect daily. Looks (those waterfall headlights), comfort, and performance. As said above, you just have to put up with CUE.

It even gave up the ghost, while saving my life with a bajillion airbags, to put me in a new M240xi.
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      11-13-2017, 05:03 PM   #10
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The CTS V-Sport handles better than the SS, feels smaller, and is more sophisticated. It's also faster out of the box. That's the one you should be really looking at based on your criteria. I almost bought one after driving, but then went and got a m240i because I didn't need 4 doors.

BTW, I have also owned 2 G8s, including a GXP M6. They are worlds behind the m235i and m240i in all aspects and needed to be heavily modded to make them quality vehicles.
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      11-14-2017, 07:11 PM   #11
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Its hard to put down in writing anything specific about the 2 series that makes it so great (at least in my eyes). When my lease was coming to an end I was thinking maybe look at a Camaro, or some other offerings. In the end, I couldn't part with the 2. Ended up just buying out my lease.
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      11-14-2017, 07:22 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3.0L View Post
Hey, the M235i can't do everything. Sounds like you're already sold on the Chevy SS. The performance numbers look pretty good, but it's still a Chevy.

Kind of like the old muscle car days - they go like h*ll, but not a sports coupe, not to mention the crappy MPG. Ha!

Do the Chevy, but I predict you'll be back one day.
The SS really is a "muscle car", a sedan with a high power engine.
Still, it handles much better than any muscle car of the original era.
It's a big car and that's the only thing that turned me away.

I think it looks good as far as sedans go. It's not overly flashy with odd creases and angles like recent Camry, Optima, Sonata, Altima, Maxima and others. It's very much in keeping with more stoic and tame Euro and German design.

As for "it's still a Chevy", that shouldn't be regarded as a negative these days. Chevy has come a LONG way since it's pre-bankrupt days. Ford and Chevy build some excellent quality vehicles that easily compare and even rival other non American brands. The Camaro is a performance monster and much better performance to dollar than the cars it challenges.
Too bad Chevy didn't get the interior space optimized like Ford has in the Mustang, or how German makers squeeze out maximum space in seemingly smaller dimensions.

Yes, the SS's big V8 sucks gas, but like any large displacement engine it does that when called upon to produce it's big power. My 340i's MPG drops considerably if I keep my foot on the loud pedal too often and/or too long.
If the SS were to get the newest 9 or 10spd AT it would do wonders for it's acceleration as well as nicely improve overall average MPG. It has a now outdated 6spd AT. I hope Chevy figures out a way to keep that model.
They can build it on the Camaro chassis, and it's very well known how great of a handling chassis it can be tuned to as well as a nice controlled ride. Size it even between the 3 and 5 series, and maximize the interior space and it would make a great option for those looking for something different.
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      11-19-2017, 11:49 AM   #13
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Caddy ATS w/ the 3.6 starts @$44K, assuming he wants similar performance to the M235i.

Maybe a CPO 4 series GC?
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      11-20-2017, 12:40 PM   #14
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I test drove a SS before buying my m235. I agree with the OP.

I will say that the Dodge Charger SRT/Daytona is a much better drive than the SS. Even though it's a bigger car.
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      11-20-2017, 08:23 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Anthony235 View Post
I test drove a SS before buying my m235. I agree with the OP.

I will say that the Dodge Charger SRT/Daytona is a much better drive than the SS. Even though it's a bigger car.
Just curious what it was about the Charger SRT that made it a better driver than the SS?

My assumption was that an SS would whip the Charger around a road course with its smaller size, magnetic dampers, Brembo brakes, etc., but maybe I'm underestimating the Dodge's capabilities as a handling car?
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      11-20-2017, 10:29 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luftwaffe1O1 View Post
Its hard to put down in writing anything specific about the 2 series that makes it so great (at least in my eyes). When my lease was coming to an end I was thinking maybe look at a Camaro, or some other offerings. In the end, I couldn't part with the 2. Ended up just buying out my lease.
ding ding ding. Same here. My lease is up in a year and I've decided it's a keeper. There's nothing out there that motivates me to move on. I had previously been thinking of a 230 but the gas mileage is so close that it's not an issue, I'm sticking with auto so the possibility of a manual falls away and my 235 is (in the words of a salesman I used to deal with) a "rare" car. M performance exhaust and limited slip. And a lease buyout rate that's nice (due to the not so great residual when I started the lease).

And like you, used to have a Z3. Two, in fact!
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      11-21-2017, 11:18 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wjones14 View Post
Just curious what it was about the Charger SRT that made it a better driver than the SS?

My assumption was that an SS would whip the Charger around a road course with its smaller size, magnetic dampers, Brembo brakes, etc., but maybe I'm underestimating the Dodge's capabilities as a handling car?
SRT has magnetic dampers too. The upgraded brakes (standard on SRT and Daytona) are amazing. They are the huge 2 piece rotors and 6 piston. Some of the best brake feel I've ever felt. Grip levels were huge and the car was very stable. I scared the salesman quite a bit (I'm a 15 year track day guy). As for a road course I think it depends on the track. On a small technical course (like Streets of Willow) I think they battle it out pretty closely. On a big course (like Big Willow) the SRT has the lead the whole time. For pure straight line speed the SRT should pull on a SS with no problem.

I will also make the claim that the SRT is quicker than a stock m235i around Big Willow. I did a 1:33 at Willow with my current setup. I don't doubt a stock SRT pulls that off on the same track.

I just think the Charger pulls off the american muscle car better than the SS and is just a much better overall package. Charger just has that spark that I didn't get with the SS.

Keep in mind I'm talking about the 2015+ Charger. Which is a big update from the previous years.

Damn, makes me want to go get one again. I'm trying to hold onto the BMW until I move in about 18 months. If I move to Vegas the SRT will be back on my list. If I move to Flagstaff, AZ I'll probably end up with a 4x4 to tackle the snow.

Last edited by Anthony235; 11-21-2017 at 11:26 AM.
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      11-21-2017, 07:09 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthony235 View Post
SRT has magnetic dampers too. The upgraded brakes (standard on SRT and Daytona) are amazing. They are the huge 2 piece rotors and 6 piston. Some of the best brake feel I've ever felt. Grip levels were huge and the car was very stable. I scared the salesman quite a bit (I'm a 15 year track day guy). As for a road course I think it depends on the track. On a small technical course (like Streets of Willow) I think they battle it out pretty closely. On a big course (like Big Willow) the SRT has the lead the whole time. For pure straight line speed the SRT should pull on a SS with no problem.

I will also make the claim that the SRT is quicker than a stock m235i around Big Willow. I did a 1:33 at Willow with my current setup. I don't doubt a stock SRT pulls that off on the same track.

I just think the Charger pulls off the american muscle car better than the SS and is just a much better overall package. Charger just has that spark that I didn't get with the SS.

Keep in mind I'm talking about the 2015+ Charger. Which is a big update from the previous years.

Damn, makes me want to go get one again. I'm trying to hold onto the BMW until I move in about 18 months. If I move to Vegas the SRT will be back on my list. If I move to Flagstaff, AZ I'll probably end up with a 4x4 to tackle the snow.
Thanks for the info. New respect for the Dodge!

I did find some lap times at Streets of Willow. Not definitive proof of anything since the laps were done at different times. However, these are all with Randy Pobst doing the driving, so that's about as apples to apples as we might get:

#15 - Camaro SS 1LE 1:22.70
#21 - BMW M4 1:23.73
#24 - 2015 Ford Mustang GT 1:24.29
#35 - 2014 Chevy SS 1:25.71
#36 - Dodge Challenger R/T 6.4 Scat Pack 1:25.76
#42 - BMW M235i 1:26.37
#44 - 2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat 1:26.87

http://fastestlaps.com/tracks/willow...eets-of-willow
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      11-22-2017, 01:28 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wjones14 View Post
Thanks for the info. New respect for the Dodge!

I did find some lap times at Streets of Willow. Not definitive proof of anything since the laps were done at different times. However, these are all with Randy Pobst doing the driving, so that's about as apples to apples as we might get:

#15 - Camaro SS 1LE 1:22.70
#21 - BMW M4 1:23.73
#24 - 2015 Ford Mustang GT 1:24.29
#35 - 2014 Chevy SS 1:25.71
#36 - Dodge Challenger R/T 6.4 Scat Pack 1:25.76
#42 - BMW M235i 1:26.37
#44 - 2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat 1:26.87

http://fastestlaps.com/tracks/willow...eets-of-willow
About what I figured. Hellcat and base SRT models should be very similar on that small course with the Hellcat being the heavier of the two.
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