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· Parking Spot Maven
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2,870 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking at leasing a 2002 330CI in the next few weeks. I want to go to the dealer 'armed with knowledge' so I have a few questions about the whole process...

I live in SoCal (Huntington Beach) and there are a few dealers in the area... I paid a visit to Sterling BMW in Newport Beach as they are the closest, but I didn't get a real good feeling from them. Has anyone here had any experiences with them, or any other dealers in the area for that matter (Sterling, Irvine, Shelly, Long Beach, Crevier)? Are there any honest salesmen (misnomer?) you would recommend?

I was also wondering about the whole acquisition process; I've read a number of posts where people are waiting for their cars. Do you have to put a deposit on the car, or are you paying for it while it is being built and shipped (i.e. does the lease begin when you order it or after it has arrived)? How long does this whole process typically take? I'd rather not settle for something on the lot, but at the same time I'd hate to use up two or three months of the lease waiting for the car to arrive. I'd also love to have my car for the upcoming big West Coast meet! :)

Last but not least, to those who are leasing: did you find the estimated lease payment at www.bmwusa.com to be at all accurate? Or is it more of a bait-and-switch? :dunno:

Any info would be much appreciated. Thanks!!

--SONET
 

· Registered
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560 Posts
If you order, expect it to take...

about 3 months for west coast delivery (unless dealer has one optioned the way you wnat in their pipeline). If you order, you normally have to put some deposit (usually $500-$1000) down, possibly more depending on options/color.
 

· Traffic Surgeon
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2,385 Posts
Man, you really don't have a clue do you..?! :D :p

Research the pros/cons and ins/outs of leasing on Edmunds.com or somewhere similar. Make sure you have all your invoice and MSRP costs for both the car and all options you're considering.

Don't tell the salesman that you're planning to lease until you've agreed on a fair price, ie do not pay MSRP. Depending on area/dealership, you may or may not get the best deal around, so make sure you shop around before committing.

Since 330ci's are fairly uncommon to find on a lot (for very long), you usually have to order the car. 60 - 90 days as a rule from the day you order to the day you take delivery. And no, you do not begin paying for the car while it's being built. You will need to leave a deposit though.

So sit back and enjoy! The waiting is the worst. I've got 3 more weeks! Hope that helps...

:thumb:
 

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44 Posts
If you order the car, it will take 2-3 months, and you will have to put down a deposit. I ordered my car in early September, and took delivery in mid-November. I had to place a $1K deposit, which went towards my down payment. However, I bought my car, so I don't know the difference between buying and leasing.

I live in the socal area as well, and I didn't have a great experience at Irvine BMW. The guy I spoke to was really friendly and all, but he tried tacking on all these charges to the car, which would have put it close to or above MSRP (plus, he wouldn't budge from $500 off MSRP). If you don't mind the drive, I hear good things about New Century BMW in Alhambra, or Assael BMW in Monrovia. I eventually decided on ordering my car from Cutter Motors in Santa Barbara, which was a ways for me to go, but as you've probably read on the boards, it's worth the drive to get your car from them. The people there are really friendly and willing to work with you, are professional, and don't give you any BS. Best of all, Cutter offered me the best price, without any of the haggling that I had to do with the other dealers. I couldn't get them to throw in the floormats for free, but they gave me a good discount on them.

I'd recommend Cutter just because it was the most pain-free experience that I've had with the BMW dealerships that I dealt with.

And the worst part is definitely the wait. Those few months felt like an eternity!

John
 

· Parking Spot Maven
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2,870 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks

Thanks for the replies, I really appreciate the info. I

Chris, I actually have read through Edmunds leasing section (among others) and I really do think leasing would be best in my situation, as rare as this may be. I only drive ~6K miles/year, I don't plan to modify it, and I keep my cars in near-perfect shape. Most importantly, considering my situation as stated, I think I could invest the extra $600/mo in something with considerably better financial returns than a car.

I just stopped by BMW of Long Beach since I was in the area. I was really impressed with the way the place was run. Unfortunately the salesman was a little pushy. He said he could get me exactly what I wanted (Titanium Silver/Gray/Manual/Navi/SP/Xenon) by early April, otherwise it would be mid-May if I didn't jump on it before Monday. Although it would be nice to get it soon, I really don't like being rushed. Especially since I'm still on the fence about whether or not I should get the Navigation system.

I'll consider Cutter, though that is about 2.5 hours from here. I have heard lots of good things about that dealership.

Thanks again,
--SONET
 

· Traffic Surgeon
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2,385 Posts
Glad I/we could help. I wasn't trying to dissuade you from leasing, I just wanted to make sure that you were aware of all the terms and legalese that some dealers use to try to throw off their customers so they can jack up the price. Either way, it looks like you've done your homework, so good luck! Oh, and if you want an unsolicited opinion about the NAV, I'd skip it...more fun getting lost and finding your own way..! :thumb:
 
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