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My car is telling me I need to do the brake fluid service- should I take it in for that and then just leave it there? ;)
Brake fluid is due three years after the car is built. You get free maintenance for three years after the car is bought/leased. You're on the hook for any delinquent maintenance when you turn the car in. Just to be safe, take it in for the free brake fluid change before the three years of leasing is up.
 

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If you visit your dealer for free required maintenance, that would be a good time to request a lease-end final inspection and, yes, if it is convenient for you, to turn in the car and get your name signed off the registration.

As to the deeper and broader issue of the "value" of driving a BMW, this is purely subjective. IMHO, too many people who really couldn't afford a BMW leased or purchased them. Still do. Especially in the USA, living "the life," even if one can't afford it, is common, as evidenced by the high levels of consumer debt and low levels of retirement savings. It is also what has kept our economy, pre-COVID, rolling along. Consumer spending is a key component to the apparent economic "prosperity" enjoyed in the USA.

High line cars are an indulgence. If you want one, and can afford one, with, or without, an aggressive deal, then drive one because you can. A good deal just makes it that much sweeter, but should never be a financially necessary condition -- only a wise choice.

I have mentioned elsewhere that a famous bankruptcy attorney used to say buy the most house you can afford and drive the cheapest car you can stand. He lived in a mansion and drove Chevys and Toyotas. His wife drove a VW.

I like nice cars. But I would never drive one I couldn't easily afford, and I would never place driving a high line car before having sufficient resources to cover my other needs and vices, many times over. Ever. A good car is easy to find. A car you will love, for whatever need it fills, Ford or Ferrari, well, that's an earned dividend.

Just so it "smells" new. ;)
When we were working, my favorite financial metric was "consumption/after-tax earned income ratio." Mine was below 0.5 before marriage. Frau Putzer's was hovering around 1.0 before marriage. There were a lot of knock down drag out fights to get it to 0.75 or 0.8 during marriage.

I itemize all our spending. I include car depreciation as part of spending or consumption. That and maintaining the aforementioned ratio causes one to ask questions alike "BMW or Toyota?" and "New car or vacation?"

A less useful but fun financial metric is book value of cars/total net worth ratio. It was probably near 1.0 when I bought my first new car two years after college (Nissan Sentra SE-R). I got it down to 0.01 (1%) a few years ago, but I was in between BMW's at the time (one totaled, one on order)/
 

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So the difference of 330e and Fusion Energi of 6 seconds versus 9 seconds 0-60? That will translate to noticeable difference in daily driving experience.
I think Fusion energi is around 7.9/8.0 to 60. G20 is what, 5.6 sec? My F30 closer to 5.9/6.0, so maybe 2 seconds. But how often am I flooring a hybrid for a 0-60 run? Most of my driving is stop and go with speed limits of 25-35 mph (so naturally I'm usually between 40-50 :) )

They weigh about the same- biggest difference is probably the lack of a turbo in the Ford, plus I think their 2.0 ICE is Atkinson cycle, which I'm sure trades acceleration for efficiency.
 

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If you visit your dealer for free required maintenance, that would be a good time to request a lease-end final inspection and, yes, if it is convenient for you, to turn in the car and get your name signed off the registration.

As to the deeper and broader issue of the "value" of driving a BMW, this is purely subjective. IMHO, too many people who really couldn't afford a BMW leased or purchased them. Still do. Especially in the USA, living "the life," even if one can't afford it, is common, as evidenced by the high levels of consumer debt and low levels of retirement savings. It is also what has kept our economy, pre-COVID, rolling along. Consumer spending is a key component to the apparent economic "prosperity" enjoyed in the USA.

High line cars are an indulgence. If you want one, and can afford one, with, or without, an aggressive deal, then drive one because you can. A good deal just makes it that much sweeter, but should never be a financially necessary condition -- only a wise choice.

I have mentioned elsewhere that a famous bankruptcy attorney used to say buy the most house you can afford and drive the cheapest car you can stand. He lived in a mansion and drove Chevys and Toyotas. His wife drove a VW.

I like nice cars. But I would never drive one I couldn't easily afford, and I would never place driving a high line car before having sufficient resources to cover my other needs and vices, many times over. Ever. A good car is easy to find. A car you will love, for whatever need it fills, Ford or Ferrari, well, that's an earned dividend.

Just so it "smells" new. ;)
Totally agree. My whole dilemma was not that I couldn't afford a new BMW lease, but that I didn't need a new BMW, especially with my current driving habits, or lack thereof. It just didn't make sense to spend on monthly payments what the dealers were quoting me- which was significantly higher than the current lease. I think with the other brands, I can get a lease significantly lower than my current lease. So not only do I enjoy the new car smell that is so addicting, but I can also enjoy seeing more money in the bank. A win-win I hope.

I've subscribed to the thought that being "rich" is more than just about driving a BMW, owning a big house, etc. - but rather that you have the freedom and choice to do those things. That of course means you can choose not to- its more the idea of being able to, rather than actually doing it. I remember once reading about a millionaire who was driving a 10-year old Toyota Camry when he made his first million. That doesn't work for everyone (probably won't catch me driving a 10 year old Camry!), but to each his/her own!

I've certainly enjoyed driving the Bimmer for the last 3 years, no doubt it is a great car. I've no doubt another one will end up in the garage eventually... maybe even in the next three years.
 

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I've subscribed to the thought that being "rich" is more than just about driving a BMW, owning a big house, etc. - but rather that you have the freedom and choice to do those things. That of course means you can choose not to- its more the idea of being able to, rather than actually doing it. I remember once reading about a millionaire who was driving a 10-year old Toyota Camry when he made his first million. That doesn't work for everyone (probably won't catch me driving a 10 year old Camry!), but to each his/her own!

I've certainly enjoyed driving the Bimmer for the last 3 years, no doubt it is a great car. I've no doubt another one will end up in the garage eventually... maybe even in the next three years.
:thumbup:

After Bimmers and Jags and Range Rovers, I'm on my second MINI. Got the first one when I went to the BMW Center looking for a new Bimmer to replace my Range Rover Evoque that was coming off lease. Got A MINI instead, much to my surprise, and delight. Three quick years later, got another MINI which we love even more than the first one. Freedom and Choice.
 

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Maybe a Tesla Model 3 off-menu base configuration*$35k MSRP?) can be considered, although Tesla leases are quite expensive.


Better off going for the standard range plus for 38k. Since Elon lowered the standard range plus from 40k to 38k, the base 35k model makes zero sense IMHO.


Sent from my iPhone using Bimmerfest mobile app
 

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There a book that's bee out twenty years or so, "The Millionaire Next Door." It's a study by two economics professors about the habits of millionaires in the US. They quantified millionaires' cars by MSRP and length. The statistical average based on those metrics ended up being a Buick La Sabre. The single most popular model car owned by the millionaires studies wasn't a car, but a Ford F-150. Only about 10% of millionaires drove luxury European cars, and the did so because they enjoyed them and not to impress anybody.
 

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There a book that's bee out twenty years or so, "The Millionaire Next Door." It's a study by two economics professors about the habits of millionaires in the US. They quantified millionaires' cars by MSRP and length. The statistical average based on those metrics ended up being a Buick La Sabre. The single most popular model car owned by the millionaires studies wasn't a car, but a Ford F-150. Only about 10% of millionaires drove luxury European cars, and the did so because they enjoyed them and not to impress anybody.
But those are all dead by now as are most of the persons who drove Buicks twenty years ago.

But I do wonder about this kind of study. if it is true, who is it buying supercars...certainly not laborers.
 

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There a book that's bee out twenty years or so, "The Millionaire Next Door." It's a study by two economics professors about the habits of millionaires in the US. They quantified millionaires' cars by MSRP and length. The statistical average based on those metrics ended up being a Buick La Sabre. The single most popular model car owned by the millionaires studies wasn't a car, but a Ford F-150. Only about 10% of millionaires drove luxury European cars, and the did so because they enjoyed them and not to impress anybody.
Right. PAWS (Prodigious Accumulators of Wealth) described in the book are the folks who live below their means, as opposed to the UAWS (Under Accumulators of Wealth) who often have high incomes/cash flows yet spend prodigiously, doing things like... leasing BMWs instead of funding retirement/paying down debt/accumulating income-generating assets.

PAWS are the "millionaires next door," residing in more modest neighborhoods, etc. However, a few of them might have something interesting stashed in the garage or down at the marina. But if they do, it's fully paid for with surplus cash -- surplus meaning everything else is well-covered, and then some. As Daddy used to say, a dividend. (Usually paid for with... dividends).;)
 

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But those are all dead by now as are most of the persons who drove Buicks twenty years ago.

But I do wonder about this kind of study. if it is true, who is it buying supercars...certainly not laborers.
Hollywood, pro athletes, deca-millionaires, hecto-millionaires. Also, car people with some money (multi-millionaires but maybe not deca-millionaires). A friend has a 20 year old Ferrari 550. But, he's REALLY a car person, a semi-pro race car driver and a former SCCA amateur national champion.

An acquaintance of mine owned a VW dealership before retiring. He has a Porsche Turbo S (MSRP ~$200k). But, he got a deal on it from his friend who owned a Porsche dealership. It was a factory order and the customer backed out before taking delivery.

Frau Putzer befriended a couple who were interior decorators from LA and later in South Beach. They drove really high-end cars if not supercars: Aston's, Bentley's. But, they leased them and they weren't accumulating wealth. They were just putting on a show, supposedly for credibility.

There's a picture of Apple CEO Tim Cook grabbing a latte from Starbucks. He was driving either a BMW 528i or 535d (what's badged as a 530d in Europe). Warren Buffet has a Cadillac sedan. Jackie Onassis had a BMW 328i when she died.
 

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I'm back to this thread again! After a significant amount of back and forth with some non-BMW dealers... haven't gotten a deal I like yet on a new lease. The lease buyout option is still on the table, and is starting to look better and better. $27k plus tax for a car with under 14k miles on it (plus I'd keep my coral red seats... ) is probably as good as I'd get.

For those with purchased BMWs, what is your annual maintenance costs typically like? I'm aware of the BMW credit cards that might be an option for paying for those types of things and then getting some sort of rebate back, anyone with experience there?

My only hesitation in terms of expensive repairs would be the battery/hybrid components, but I believe they are covered for 8 years (so another 5 left, at least covering the loan period), and might last longer especially with my low annual mileage.

Right now it looks like I'm overpaying a bit, as the trade-in value is way lower than my payoff, but I know used car values are depressed currently thanks to covid. I'm sure eventually the depreciation would slow enough that my payments would catch-up to build equity.

Have I convinced myself yet?
 

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Have I convinced myself yet?
Starting with the assumption that our family has held sacred for 3 generations, which is anything beyond a basic transportation vehicle is a dividend we pay ourselves, after every other expense is well-covered and the money's in the bank, we then go to what do you want to see in your garage and what will make you happy every time you slip behind the wheel?

$30,000 purchases a lot of nice brand new vehicles, some with very long warranty coverage.

We leased most of our Bimmers over the decades. Bought that first one in 1968 and it stayed in the family for over two decades before an independent BMW mechanic bought it for a grand and, for all I know, is still driving it. The 1990 5 series lasted until 2014, when a careless family member let it run with a busted water pump and cooked that sweet six cylinder engine. The only out-of-pocket repair on that car in 80,000+ miles was a water pump at about 50,000 miles that clearly was replaced by one that was no better than the original.

So, while the new ones have more tech and batteries and such, they are built to last and, underneath, are tanks. But trannies and electronics and air conditioning systems are costy if they break. Even so, if you put two grand a year into repairs, you're still coming out better than depreciation on a new car. And a $925 lease fee savings covers your scheduled services for a few years, one would think.

Finally, leasing is about paying the opportunity cost for renting that new car smell, under warranty. Purchasing is a buy and hold, long-term strategy. In these uncertain times, one needs to take a hard look at one's personal finances, where one is in the trajectory of life, and what one values (and how much one wishes to pay to play, whether one can easily afford the game or not).

If you like those red seats, shell out the 30 grand and drive it until the wheels fall off. If you like to treat yourself to a new car smell fix, well, all the spreadsheets in the world don't really matter, now do they??? I married the right girl for love and for the long term. I date my cars and keep my wife. Much more cost-effective.;) What price love?
 

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I'm back to this thread again! After a significant amount of back and forth with some non-BMW dealers... haven't gotten a deal I like yet on a new lease. The lease buyout option is still on the table, and is starting to look better and better. $27k plus tax for a car with under 14k miles on it (plus I'd keep my coral red seats... ) is probably as good as I'd get.

For those with purchased BMWs, what is your annual maintenance costs typically like? I'm aware of the BMW credit cards that might be an option for paying for those types of things and then getting some sort of rebate back, anyone with experience there?

My only hesitation in terms of expensive repairs would be the battery/hybrid components, but I believe they are covered for 8 years (so another 5 left, at least covering the loan period), and might last longer especially with my low annual mileage.

Right now it looks like I'm overpaying a bit, as the trade-in value is way lower than my payoff, but I know used car values are depressed currently thanks to covid. I'm sure eventually the depreciation would slow enough that my payments would catch-up to build equity.

Have I convinced myself yet?
If you're only driving 5k miles/year, owning is a lot more attractive than leasing. Nothing much goes wrong with BMW's until around 60k or 70k miles. Somewhere around 20k miles/year, it's a no-brainer to lease a BMW. At ~12k miles/year, the break-even point between buying and leasing is somewhere around six years. Six years is about the average turn-over for new cars sold in the U.S. My 535i is six years old and had 65k miles on the last anniversary of its purchase. Considering deprecation, maintenance, and capital costs, I was just about where I would have been if I'd leased two of them. It's the 7th, 8th, and 9th years where my savings will be huge, on the order of $25k, over leasing a new one.

Buying a hybrid when you drive 5k miles/year didn't make financial sense. But, even if you have to replace the batteries in the 9th year, you'd still be money ahead. If they go out during the warranty period. you won a $5k scratch-off ticket.

If you're going to keep a car eight or nine years, you should put some effort in maintaining it cosmetically. Sunlight is your biggest threat, followed by road salt up north. Keep a good coat of wax on it, and wax the hood, roof, trunk, and bumpers twice as often as the sides. Keep the exterior plastic splooged with Armor-All. The tires will need the sidewalls splooged with Meguiar's Endurance, especially if the car sits in sunlight during the day.

A rule-of-thumb for annual deprecation of a car driven 12k miles/ year is:

25% of MSRP the first year.

20% of book value the years the car goes out of warranty, becomes seven model years old, and goes over 100k miles. The latter two are because banks don't want to write loans on those cars.

15% the remaining years.


Your depreciation would be less due to low mileage. Here's the rule-of-thumb applied to a $50k MSRP car. This spreadsheet is what keeps me out of new car showrooms. The last two cars we sold were twelve years old, and I have a 13 year old car still in the garage.

My annual maintenance costs for my 2014 535i have been: $375, $125, $2050 (tires, $1000; steering wheel torn by zipper, $900), $175, $300, $1300 (pot hole damage, $1100). That's all trivial compared to my deprecation of $54,600.
,
That new car smell is from the outgassing of plastic, and those compounds are very similar to estrogen. So, new car... man boobs. :eek:
 

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Buying a hybrid when you drive 5k miles/year didn't make financial sense. But, even if you have to replace the batteries in the 9th year, you'd still be money ahead. If they go out during the warranty period. you won a $5k scratch-off ticket.

If you're going to keep a car eight or nine years, you should put some effort in maintaining it cosmetically. Sunlight is your biggest threat, followed by road salt up north. Keep a good coat of wax on it, and wax the hood, roof, trunk, and bumpers twice as often as the sides. Keep the exterior plastic splooged with Armor-All. The tires will need the sidewalls splooged with Meguiar's Endurance, especially if the car sits in sunlight during the day.

:
At the time I initially leased, I was driving quite a bit more than I am now. As of earlier this year, I'm within 3 miles of the office, and as of the last few months, haven't been there at all, so that is playing into it. I averaged more than 5k miles in my first year. The benefit though is I can do most of my driving on E-Drive, so I visit gas stations maybe once a quarter unless i take a long trip. 14 miles of electric range isn't much but it covers my commute easily!

Funny you mention cosmetics- just the other day a complete wash/wax was done. It is garaged, so that helps keep it out of the elements when I'm at home. Only thing that gets it in the garage is the aforementioned birds; but I do have some chemical guys waterless wash and microfibers stashed in the trunk for those occasions.
 

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At the time I initially leased, I was driving quite a bit more than I am now. As of earlier this year, I'm within 3 miles of the office, and as of the last few months, haven't been there at all, so that is playing into it. I averaged more than 5k miles in my first year. The benefit though is I can do most of my driving on E-Drive, so I visit gas stations maybe once a quarter unless i take a long trip. 14 miles of electric range isn't much but it covers my commute easily!

Funny you mention cosmetics- just the other day a complete wash/wax was done. It is garaged, so that helps keep it out of the elements when I'm at home. Only thing that gets it in the garage is the aforementioned birds; but I do have some chemical guys waterless wash and microfibers stashed in the trunk for those occasions.
Gas eventually goes bad, supposedly after 30 days, especially if it has ethanol in it. If you're going 90 days between fill-ups, I'd throw a bottle of Sta-Bil in the tank. I'm doing that during the lockdown-smackdown.

I have a squirt bottle full of distilled water for bird crap. That way, I never touch (and scratch) the paint. On trips, the bottle is part of my window washing bucked. I rinse and squeegee the windows after washing them with Invisible Glass.
 

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Gas eventually goes bad, supposedly after 30 days, especially if it has ethanol in it. If you're going 90 days between fill-ups, I'd throw a bottle of Sta-Bil in the tank. I'm doing that during the lockdown-smackdown.

I have a squirt bottle full of distilled water for bird crap. That way, I never touch (and scratch) the paint. On trips, the bottle is part of my window washing bucked. I rinse and squeegee the windows after washing them with Invisible Glass.
No need to add Sta-Bil to the tank on an PHEV BMW. The gas tank is pressurized to keep the gas fresh for at least a year.
 
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