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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
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View Poll Results: BMW vs toyota?
2010 Prius 40k-50k miles cpo 5 50.00%
2006 325i 100k-110k miles non-cpo 5 50.00%
Voters: 10. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 01-05-2013, 04:53 AM
benbmw benbmw is offline
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BMW 325i vs Prius? Maintenance?

I know interesting title. Should this even be a comparison? That isn't really my question :P
I feel like I have somewhat of a dilemma and your guys opinions and expertise would be much appreciated!

So, I am looking to buy a "new" car (my own money) and wanted to know your guys opinions. I was wondering what route to take.

My options:

A 2010 toyota prius about 40-50k miles for about $20k-$22k CPO.

OR-

A 2006 BMW 325i sedan about 100k-110K miles for about $13k-$14k. NON-CPO private seller.

My parents say I should get the prius, and in all honestly I wouldn't mind driving the prius. It is newer and the thought of saving the environment and gas would make me happy too. BUT, I would much rather have the 2006 bmw over the 2010 prius. I have two side when it come to driving, save gas and the environment or drive in a car with the ability to pass traffic and merge into traffic easily type of driving.

This is what i was thinking, which one would cost more or which one is more worth it?

The prius is about $20k-22k(nav., leather, sunroof w/ solar panels, heated seats.) . my monthly payments would be about $300-$350 a month (down payment about $4k) and the insurance from a cheap company for me is about 700$ a year full coverage.

The BMW (base) that is $12k-14k my monthly payments would be about $160-$220 (down about $4k). The insurance from a cheap company about the same $712 a year full coverage.

So I would save about $130-$160 a month from monthly payments driving the bimmer that I could put toward the more expensive maintenance, repairs, and gas I would be facing with the bmw.

I do drive about 1K a month if that helps.

But I was wondering is that enough to somewhat "even it out" so to speak? Will the bimmer cost much more to own if im already saving about $130-160 a month driving it over the Prius?

And even after i pay off both cars how much more will it cost to maintain this bimmer that already has an existing 100k miles on it over the prius? but would is it worth it?

Is there anything else I should take into consideration that i have over looked? At least i think i have the bases covered.

The opinions and comments would be appriciated! THANKS ALL!

Last edited by benbmw; 01-05-2013 at 05:23 AM.
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  #2  
Old 01-05-2013, 06:10 AM
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MP3_E46 MP3_E46 is offline
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I own a 2011 Prius that cost me $22K brand new in Fall 2011 (has ~12K miles today). Also have an E93 and current gen MX-5 (both ~11K miles)

If you have to think about it get the Prius. It's my car of choice for any long journey: more comfortable than the BMW + obviously better mpg and way, way better reliability.

The Prius is obviously down on power + cabin noise is higher but it's pretty close to a luxury car. Handling in the Prius is better than you'd think; it's no where near my MX-5 with aftermarket suspension but neither is the E93.

Keep harassing Toyota dealers and don't pay more than $23K for a brand new Prius
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  #3  
Old 01-05-2013, 06:25 AM
roadkillrob roadkillrob is offline
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Prius will be cheap to run and for maint until the battery/electronics are off warranty, eventually the batteries will be done and the car is worthless at that point, but that is 10 years away.

BMW's are notorious for things going wrong in the 100-130k range, you will be looking at struts, shocks, suspension bushings, water pump, radiator at minimum. Depending on current upkeep, brakes are likely and then typical Vanos, plug coil and other electronic issues are normal, the BMW will be much more to run over time than the Prius for many reasons.

That being said, the Prius is probably the most unfulfilling driving car on earth - it is a toaster with wheels and less power - everything about the car is boring and dull, the entire world hates you being in their way and because of all that you will turn into the kind of person that would buy a prius, eventually you will just move back in with your parents and live in their basement hoping that at some point it will all just end. With the BMW you will wakeup every day and be excited to drive your car, your car will probably have some issues and need towed to the mechanic sometimes, you will be excited waiting to get it back so you can drive it some more!

It all depends on what it is worth to you to have a fun to drive interesting car - it does cost more.

From experience, I have an E93 and a Civic, the Civic was an LX, traded it for an SI (one of the more exciting Honda products) and i drive the Civic on rainy days and in the winter - it is a fun car compared to a Prius and every time I drive it, it just makes me miss my E93 even more - after winter is over, I can't wait to get back in the BMW and drive it again. BMW is a driving experience, the Prius is an appliance to move people between 2 points!
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  #4  
Old 01-05-2013, 07:24 AM
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MP3_E46 MP3_E46 is offline
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Originally Posted by roadkillrob View Post
Prius will be cheap to run and for maint until the battery/electronics are off warranty, eventually the batteries will be done and the car is worthless at that point, but that is 10 years away.

That being said, the Prius is probably the most unfulfilling driving car on earth - it is a toaster with wheels and less power - everything about the car is boring and dull, the entire world hates you being in their way and because of all that you will turn into the kind of person that would buy a prius...
First point is a myth. Many previous generation Prius owners have over 200K on their cars with few or no repairs (BMW owners who have that kind of mileage have virtually all spent more on repairs than their car is worth or got handy with DIY). When the Prius battery finally goes the option is to have a few bad cells swapped out (low cost) or buy a new OEM battery pack for ~$2200. By the time the current generation needs a new battery pack there will lots of aftermarket options as the Prius is a far more popular car now.

As an owner of a Prius and a ton of sports car now and in my past I can assure everyone it's far from un-fulfilling. It's always a giggle 'racing' crazy owners in BMWs etc. Not long ago one owner literally left the road trying to keep up with my Prius - he/she kicked dust everywhere. The bozo was tailgating me so I floored it around the next curve; they stayed on my bumper for a while

BMW cannot hold a candle to Toyota's quality/engineering/ reliability testing. Are you sure you can drop $6K for annual maintenance + want a car that runs rough/ won't even start in the morning? Take a look at this forum and you'll fine many owners complaining + many spending $4K+ on repairs but still having the original issue.

It's funny how many comments you get on forums from people that have never even driven the car. Currently I own a Prius and have the E93 is my seventh BMW - have learned to make the BMW a 3rd car as their reliability is terrible. Not sure I'd trust one for a long distance trip these days unless I had to time to risk being a breakdown. 325i is probably the most reliable BMW from that time but that's not saying too much. We had one of the first ones on the road in 2006 (Euro Delivery) and it was ok.. din't break down but had a few niggles from brand new.

If there was a hardtop Prius convertible my E93 would be gone tomorrow.
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  #5  
Old 01-05-2013, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by benbmw View Post

My parents say I should get the prius, and in all honestly I wouldn't mind driving the prius. It is newer and the thought of saving the environment and gas would make me happy too.
"None of the above".

The planet's environment won't care what you drive. Have you noticed what's going on in China? Driving a Prius to save the planet is like trying to stop superstorm Sandy with a roll of paper towels. It won't make any difference.

Low operating costs for used Prius do make sense for a taxi cab company, that's why taxi cab companies are gravitating away from used Crown Victorias and to the used Toyota Prius. (The new Prius buyer has already taken the big depreciation hit.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by benbmw View Post

The BMW (base) that is $12k-14k my monthly payments would be about $160-$220 (down about $4k). The insurance from a cheap company about the same $712 a year full coverage.
1. If you can afford to pay $4000 for a car, buy a $4000 car! With a $4000 budget, look for a used Toyota Corolla, Toyota Camry, Honda Civic or Honda Accord. Don't buy it from a car dealer, look to friends, family or neighbors.

2. If you really are a motor head and don't like recommendation #1, consider a used E30, E36 or (at a stretch) E46 and a good set of metric tools. Again, if you're on a budget look to friends, family or neighbors to find a BMW that's not going to be a nightmare.

BMWs are very maintenance intensive. It's preferable to find a job that pays $100k+ or learn to work on the car yourself. (Or both.)

I'm past the BMW "free maintenance" period, I just did the annual service on my car, and the parts (oil, filters, wiper blades) cost $180.50. With the BMWCCA, etc. discounts.

I've never had a car loan, and neither has my wife. My $0.02 ($0.05 with inflation.)
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  #6  
Old 01-05-2013, 09:09 AM
unrealii unrealii is offline
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Without knowing your exact situation or your ability to fix stuff when it breaks in the car, I'm going to say check out the 2013 accord. Brand new car, more fun than prius, years of worry free operation.

http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/...ew?redirect=no

E90s are not as diy as the e46. I would look at one of those, but make sure to have the cooling system and the rear sub frame checked. As mentioned above, once you get passed 100k, suspension parts start to show their wear - this is with any car, just not bmw. Keep that I mind if you are looking at cars that old.
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Old 01-05-2013, 09:17 AM
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thekurgan thekurgan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Majikthese42 View Post
"None of the above".

The planet's environment won't care what you drive. Have you noticed what's going on in China? Driving a Prius to save the planet is like trying to stop superstorm Sandy with a roll of paper towels. It won't make any difference.
This. Not to mention the global impact of actually creating and destroying a hybrid vehicle is far worse than a petrol engine. Rare earth elements are the world's new "blood diamonds".

As a side note, the OP is comparing one of the world most un-sexy, ugly vehicles ever made to a BMW. I'm thinking a crack pipe was next to the keyboard.
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  #8  
Old 01-05-2013, 09:20 AM
Tom K. Tom K. is offline
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Without knowing your exact situation or your ability to fix stuff when it breaks in the car, I'm going to say check out the 2013 accord. Brand new car, more fun than prius, years of worry free operation.
+1. Or a 2103 Camry or Altima. Then you can plan for a new BMW as your 2nd or 3rd car a few years down the road.

Tom
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Old 01-05-2013, 09:42 AM
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Neither.

New Honda Fit; $20k OTD, 37 mpg, warranty, fun to drive.

PS I've driven a Prius; it is not dissimilar to operating a washing machine. You put people in, they arrive at their destination. End of story. It had zero 'driving enjoyment'; no grip, resolute understeer, and no power. Also, I hate it when the buggers creep up on you in an Ikea parking garage on battery. Have been almost run over several times here in Atlanta by the things.
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  #10  
Old 01-05-2013, 09:46 AM
ctuna ctuna is offline
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the BMW is fun to drive

But its not particularly fuel efficient in town an on short drives.
thing 16 to 18 mpgs in town.
Its not that expensive to maintain but if something breaks parts are
expensive.
I'm hoping my next car will be all electric or will do at least 40 miles
without gas .
I agree with Majikthese42 don't buy it if you can't afford don't get in the
habit of making payments and living beyond your means.
Credit is the Enemy you want other people to pay you interest if you
are in the credit game.

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  #11  
Old 01-05-2013, 09:47 AM
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CALWATERBOY CALWATERBOY is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by benbmw View Post
I know interesting title. Should this even be a comparison?

A 2010 toyota prius about 40-50k miles for about $20k-$22k CPO.

A 2006 BMW 325i sedan about 100k-110K miles for about $13k-$14k. NON-CPO private seller.

My parents say I should get the prius, and in all honestly I wouldn't mind driving the prius. It is newer and the thought of saving the environment and gas would make me happy too. BUT, I would much rather have the 2006 bmw over the 2010 prius. I have two side when it come to driving, save gas and the environment or drive in a car with the ability to pass traffic and merge into traffic easily type of driving.

You will be stunned by the true power available in a Toyota Prius! With maximum torque delivered from a standing start to its top speed, Prius is the vehicle to have.

BMW's are frought with issues. Just scroll through any BMW forum, and you will be dunned with problem after problem, from difficult dealers to unsolvable and egregious malfunctions in addition to the many, many, many issues that can be resolved. They don't remind us that you gotta have money to own a BMW fer nuthin'!!

Japanese reliability is legendary. BMW's are like being wedded to a wife with anger issues. Just try to find a Prius owner who is not very proud.

No. There is no comparison. Your choice should be crystal clear - enjoy your new hybrid, and the adoration of all who see you have one!


.

Last edited by CALWATERBOY; 01-05-2013 at 09:50 AM.
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Old 01-05-2013, 09:58 AM
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A 40K mile car with a warranty vs. a 100K mile car without one - what was the question again?
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Old 01-05-2013, 10:02 AM
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CALWATERBOY CALWATERBOY is offline
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A 40K mile car with a warranty vs. a 100K mile car without one - what was the question again?

Yes! No BMW's likely to go 40k mi w/o issues. That warranty is valuable - it's gonna be used!!
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Old 01-05-2013, 10:09 AM
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I was initially going to suggest a new Accord (or Fit), too ...

BUT under 25 insurance for a new car will probably be fairly expensive. Plus -- why be a wage slave to a bank or finance company? Happiness is too important to have career decisions made by a payment book.

We also have an older Corolla that we keep around for house guests and when my daughter trains down from NYC in the summer. It is by far the most reliable car we have. The Toyota Corolla is the most popular automobile model in the History of Mankind *. There are reasons for that.

Is it a lot of fun to drive? Compared to, say, a Porsche? No. But it beats walking and it's a lot more fun to drive than it is fun to fix a rusty old German car.

* Over 39 million Corollas have been sold worldwide as of 2012.
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Old 01-05-2013, 11:15 AM
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MP3_E46 MP3_E46 is offline
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Also, I hate it when the buggers creep up on you in an Ikea parking garage on battery. Have been almost run over several times here in Atlanta by the things.
That might be us. If it had a trailer it almost definitely was us.

Great car especially with the trailer/ hitch mounted bike rack. Not bad storage space thanks to the hatchback; a much better buy for a young outdoorsy person.

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Old 01-05-2013, 12:52 PM
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japanese reliability is legendary. Bmw's are like being wedded to a wife with anger issues. Just try to find a prius owner who is not very smug.

.
ftfy
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:10 PM
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1985mb 1985mb is offline
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Neither.

New Honda Fit; $20k OTD, 37 mpg, warranty, fun to drive.
I'm thinking along the same lines...a new Honda Fit, Hyundai Elantra, Mini Cooper, Mazda3, Impreza, or Focus rather than a used Prius...even among hybrids the Honda Insight and Civic have lower resale values so could be better buys as used cars.
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Old 01-05-2013, 02:15 PM
roadkillrob roadkillrob is offline
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Originally Posted by CALWATERBOY View Post

Just try to find a Prius owner who is not very smug.

.
They don't call them Pious about their Prius for no reason!

Literally the most unfulfilling car I have ever driven (except for the Prius c, it is much worse). The only people that go off the road trying to keep up to a Prius are not trying to keep up, they are either trying to get past or are messing with their iphone and not paying attention.

Like noted above, in your financial situation, there are many better options than a used BMW or used Prius, Mazda 3, Civic Si, Hyundai Elantra, Kia Optima etc etc.

Prius is officially the 7th slowest car in the US (top ten only separated by .2 seconds and all in the 10 second to 60 range) - there are a lot of 40 mpg cars that are fun to drive and cheaper to own!
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Old 01-05-2013, 03:58 PM
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The BMW (base) that is $12k-14k my monthly payments would be about $160-$220 (down about $4k). The insurance from a cheap company about the same $712 a year full coverage.
I don't what term of loans you are looking at, but please do not take out a three plus year loan on a car that old... That sounds like a 60 or 72 month loan to me? If you want to look at $160 a month I would say put $4k down on an $8k car and finance the rest for two years. Or better yet, buy a $4k car and put $160 a month into a savings account.

Beyond that I would be the third to recommend the Mazda3. I had a first gen one and it was a nice little fun car.
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Old 01-05-2013, 04:09 PM
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That might be us. If it had a trailer it almost definitely was us.

Great car especially with the trailer/ hitch mounted bike rack. Not bad storage space thanks to the hatchback; a much better buy for a young outdoorsy person.

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Old 01-05-2013, 04:16 PM
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1985mb 1985mb is offline
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1. If you can afford to pay $4000 for a car, buy a $4000 car! With a $4000 budget, look for a used Toyota Corolla, Toyota Camry, Honda Civic or Honda Accord. Don't buy it from a car dealer, look to friends, family or neighbors.

2. If you really are a motor head and don't like recommendation #1, consider a used E30, E36 or (at a stretch) E46 and a good set of metric tools. Again, if you're on a budget look to friends, family or neighbors to find a BMW that's not going to be a nightmare.

BMWs are very maintenance intensive. It's preferable to find a job that pays $100k+ or learn to work on the car yourself. (Or both.)

I'm past the BMW "free maintenance" period, I just did the annual service on my car, and the parts (oil, filters, wiper blades) cost $180.50. With the BMWCCA, etc. discounts.

I've never had a car loan, and neither has my wife. My $0.02 ($0.05 with inflation.)
Some good advice here. For #1 skip anything from Toyota (unless it is something like a RWD/AWD Celica or mid-engined MR2) IF you want something with a bit of personality. Among compacts, the Civic used to be the best back in the day (not so anymore)
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Old 01-05-2013, 05:44 PM
Pasa-d Pasa-d is offline
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Funny how opinions of cars differ. I drove a Prius (the slightly older generation) as a rental for a weekend and then drove a friend's for a weekend when my previous car was in the shop. I was both surprised and disappointed. Surprised at how well it accelerated (but it's no diesel!), disappointed in overall handling, ergonomics and general driving dynamics. As others have said, basically a toaster on wheels. I found I could not live with one as my daily driver.

For dense urban living, hybrids are great, particularly plug-in ones, as they move the source of the pollution away from the dense urban center and significantly reduce smog impacts. I do not think they "save the planet" overall though; you'd be better off with a very high fuel economy gas or diesel powered car if that is your intent. They have a much lower cradle-to-grave overall impact.
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Old 01-05-2013, 06:33 PM
TXFred TXFred is offline
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Originally Posted by benbmw View Post
I know interesting title. Should this even be a comparison? That isn't really my question :P
I feel like I have somewhat of a dilemma and your guys opinions and expertise would be much appreciated!

So, I am looking to buy a "new" car (my own money) and wanted to know your guys opinions. I was wondering what route to take.

My options:

A 2010 toyota prius about 40-50k miles for about $20k-$22k CPO.
IMHO, the Prius is a car that makes you feel good about yourself, without actually doing all that much to save gas, money, or the planet.

First, consider the cost and environmental damage that is involved in making the battery packs.

Then consider the Prius's cost, and its average of 50 MPG.

Then consider the price of a used Honda Civic, about $8-10,000, and its average of 35 MPG.

Suddenly, the Prius doesn't look that good anymore.

Instead of asking yourself if you want a Prius or a 325, ask yourself if you want an economy car or a 325. That gives you a lot more options to choose from, and should save you quite a bit of cash.

Frederic
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  #24  
Old 01-05-2013, 07:05 PM
Joe in Dublin Joe in Dublin is offline
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why not get a year or two old gti
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  #25  
Old 01-05-2013, 11:11 PM
anE934fun anE934fun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MP3_E46 View Post
I own a 2011 Prius that cost me $22K brand new in Fall 2011 (has ~12K miles today). Also have an E93 and current gen MX-5 (both ~11K miles)

If you have to think about it get the Prius. It's my car of choice for any long journey: more comfortable than the BMW + obviously better mpg and way, way better reliability.

The Prius is obviously down on power + cabin noise is higher but it's pretty close to a luxury car. Handling in the Prius is better than you'd think; it's no where near my MX-5 with aftermarket suspension but neither is the E93.

Keep harassing Toyota dealers and don't pay more than $23K for a brand new Prius
Also, the E90 in the mix is rather late in its lifespan. I doubt an extended warranty is available for that car. OP would be rolling the dice on significant repairs.

Re. the Prius, things can be done to improve the handling (wider wheels & tires, front and rear suspension braces, possibly rear sway bar). The biggest downside of stock Prius is its susceptibility to cross-winds. Adding the suspension braces cures the cross-wind problems.

If the Prius is going to get the nod, be sure to check the service history on the car. If the oil changes have not been done at 5,000 mile intervals, there is a risk of sludge build-up.

MP3 - you really think the Prius is more comfortable than the E93? What seats do you have in your E93? Both the E90 and my ex-E93 were equipped with the Sport package, and I would rate the Sport package seats on par with the best (Volvo, MB) seats. Prius has manual adjustable seating that has its limits. I have gone on 5 hour road trips in the E90 with no seat problems. I doubt I would make a similar attempt with a Prius.
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