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In the Pipe, 5 by 5.
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Had my bimmer in for an oil change last week. Had arranged for a loaner from the dealership so I could run some errands. I took the opportunity to test drive the 645Ci as well as the new MB CLS500. Both cars were priced with options for around 76K. Drove them on city streets as well as hiways. Here's what i thought.

Interior: BMW wins
For starters, MB put the turn signal too far down and away from the wheel. It was very hard to find, and I kept using the cruise control for a blinker. The seats on the 6 were far more comfortable. In regard to the back seats, I thought that the MB would have had more leg room than it did. Turns out the back seats were barely functional. The 6 series for all practical purposes is a two seater. Overall the interior of the 6 was cleaner and more appealing.

Acceleration: BMW wins
The bimmer acceleration was impressive. Period. Took an uphill on-ramp up to hiway speeds of 75 mph. The pull of the engine of the 6 was inspiring. What a thrill. It had even acceleration from a street start of 5 mph to a cruising speed of 75 mph. The MB was sluggish. The engine is underpowered, to say the least. Even at hiway speeds, passing performance suffered. A definite lag was felt. The engines do not compare. Those few ponies in the bimmer make quite a differance.

Braking: BMW wins
I cannot get used to the brake by wire gimic that MB has installed. It had a real mushy feel to it. Definitely not crisp or predictable braking.

Handling. BMW wins
Much more sportier feel with the bimmer. Took an off ramp loop with both cars. The bimer felt more stable at high G cornering than the benz. Both had about the same ride firmness.

Exterior: Tossup
Very appealing lines to the benz. It looks better in real life than on the web pages. The Mercedes star is poorly placed on the rear of the car. The bimmer looks like its ready to pounce. Exterior is really a persnal preferance.

OVERALL:
For the same amount of money with the options offered, there is no contest. The bimmer is by far the better value. It drives, brakes, handles, and accelerated better. I can't believe anyone would choose the benz over the 6 series. I realize the vehicles are a bit differant, with the bimmer being a pure coupe and the benz a "coupe sedan". The bimmer is more a sports car,the benz a sports/touring car. Not really an apple to apple comparison. Except for the price and the fact that both are relatively new models.

My two cents worth.
 

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Parrothead/Car Nut
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Very comprehensive, and IMHO, very correct............all the reasons why I bought a 645Ci in January and have loved it ever since! I got lucky and drove the 1st CLS500 the M-B dealer had, the day it came in, and went right back to the BMW dealer and signed away for my Atlantic Blue beauty!
 

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I would agree competely with your assessment. One additional comment is that the 645CI is available as a 6-speed,which is what I have. I have not driven the CLS but have sat in it.
On the other hand,I expect the CLS will be a bigger seller because of the four doors, and it tends to win among most people in the external appearance department. I have had my 645 for a year, and the appearance has grown on me. I would still buy the 645 if I were making the decision today. (I have an SL500 as well, so this is not brand bias).
 

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In the Pipe, 5 by 5.
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
RONAN said:
On the other hand,I expect the CLS will be a bigger seller because of the four doors, ).
The four doors are of questionable benefit. The back seats are very cramped feeling. Your knees come very close to the front seats, and your overall feel for roominess is quite limited back there. If you're going to build a new model like this, price it out at 75K, why wouldn't you extend the lenght of the car by 3 inches to give the back seat passengers a bit more room. Honestly, the benz is for short trips only when sitting in the back seats.

The 645Ci, on the other hand, is a two seater. Unless you have small children, no average sized adult is going to feel comfortable back there. Makes me wonder what else they could have designed for behind the front seats instead of rear seats, and just made it a two seater??
 

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very good summary, I have to agree as well!
 

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Except

Yeah, BMW wins everything except what really matters at the end of the day: the ability to drive the car on a consistent basi without some maintenance issue depriving you of the car and the terrible BMW service. I have bougth 3 cars all in the San Francisco Bay Area, all from different dealers and they all suck. Sonnen in Marin is by far the worst in service followed by weatherford and then san Francisco , the "best' of the worst. Avoid Sonnen in San Rafael by all means.
 

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roadguy said:
Yeah, BMW wins everything except what really matters at the end of the day: the ability to drive the car on a consistent basi without some maintenance issue depriving you of the car and the terrible BMW service...
I'm on my 4th BMW and have had them serviced at fine dealerships in the Bay Area and So. Cal. - I've never had a major complaint. For the most part they have only bene in the shop for scheduled maintenance. By contrast, 2 close friends with Mercedes have been plagued by chronic electrical problems which still haunt (and cost) them after the warranty has ended! ouch!

On my new 6er I can't find a single the thing to complain about. Its quite simply perfect. :D
 

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Bill Kalch, consider yourself very lucky

Guess you never owned a 745 , if you never had any problems. Trust me and dozens of friends and aquaintances; quite simply they are a service nightmare.
 

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Have to Agree

I just test drove a 645ci and MB CLS500. While I like the exterior of the MB more, the BMW accelerated, braked and handled much better. Very disappointed b/c I wanted to like the MB better b/c of it's looks but it didn't pan out. the MB could not hold a tight U-curved highway exit ramp at 35 mph without slight fishtailing and the BMW took very tight mountain curves rated at 35 mph EASILY at 60 mph-without coming unglued from the road or my lane. I also test drove the MB E320 CDI (turbodiesel)- a refreshingly spry car, which compares favorably to a 5 series. But in the coupe department, the 645 wins hands-down!
 
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