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    Thread: Passat vs. BMW 5-series/Audi A6/Mercedes E350/Volvo S80 - what percent is Passat in value?

    1. Member
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      03-09-2008 06:50 PM #1
      These cars appear to be similar in size, yet the Passat can cost less than 1/2 as much in base trim.

      Would you say a Passat VR6 4 motion costing 35k or so is nearly the equal of any of these cars, or if not the equal, certainly a better value? For example, the S80 cost a bit more (38-50k), but the other Germans cost about $45-50k to start.

      Could one say the VR6 Passat is 90% of these cars at 70% of the price?

      And the base Passat is 80% at 50% of the price?

      What would you say?


    2. Member VWFSIB6's Avatar
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      03-09-2008 07:20 PM #2
      Maybe the Volvo and that's where it stops.

      In my opinion, the Passat is one hell of a car, but not on the same level as the A6, 5 series, and E-Series.


    3. Member Klaus_TDI's Avatar
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      03-09-2008 08:07 PM #3
      Quote, originally posted by psychwarlord »
      These cars appear to be similar in size, yet the Passat can cost less than 1/2 as much in base trim.

      Would you say a Passat VR6 4 motion costing 35k or so is nearly the equal of any of these cars, or if not the equal, certainly a better value? For example, the S80 cost a bit more (38-50k), but the other Germans cost about $45-50k to start.

      Could one say the VR6 Passat is 90% of these cars at 70% of the price?

      And the base Passat is 80% at 50% of the price?

      What would you say?

      The Audi , Mercedes Benz and the BMW are all a class over the Passat, at least in Europe. The Volvo also, strange enough, is placed in that class. I refer to the "Auto, Motor und Sport" car magazine.
      The Passat is +90% of these cars, no doubt about it. The last small 10% is very expensive %. If you compare similar equiped cars, the Passat is definitively the most "value for the money".


    4. Member thenew3's Avatar
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      03-09-2008 09:04 PM #4
      Before we bought our 07 3.6 4motion wagon in August of 06, we had been shopping for either a BMW 530XiT or MB E350 wagon. (mostly the BMW). Was pretty much ready to put down a deposit and order a 530 when we went to visit the folks and across the street from them was a VW dealer. having owned many VW's in the family, we decided to go see what they have to offer. Took a test drive in the 3.6 4motion wagon they had on the lot and was immediately sold on it. We placed an order for our wagon as soon as we got home.

      5 months later, we got our wagon, we liked it so much, 2 months later, we bought the wife a 2.0t sedan. (sold our 9 year old BMW 328i with 173k miles on it for the passat sedan).

      After having driven a friends 530i extensively (about 5k miles), I can say that my 3.6 4motion wagon is 90% the car at 60% the price.

      Had we gotten the 530XiT, we would've paid $65k +ttl, the passat stickered at $41k, we paid $35k +ttl

      The passat is definitely the better value. But I do miss my 328i on some occasions. While many vehicles these days are coming close to driving like a BMW, none of them do drive exactly like an BMW.

      One day (a long time from now), when the baby grows up and becomes independent, I hope to be able to get back into a BMW. Unless the VW's 20 years from now drive as nice.

      2008 Passat 3.6 4Motion Wagon Mine RIP Totaled 4/23/2013
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    5. 03-10-2008 12:57 AM #5
      I currently got my 08 Passat VR6 4MO and already have a BMW X3.

      Having driven a BMW, I am convinced that no other car comes close to driving dynamics as a BMW.

      Before I got the Passat, I was set on a 535xi. Configured to what I wanted the sticker price came to about $60k. I was really looking for a spacious sedan and when it came to interior comfort and size the 535 and Passat didn't differ very much. In fact the passat seemed to have more compartments for storage and just about everything else as the BMW sans bluetooth.

      The current volvos IMO are only elevated to their current class based on their history of being good cars. I feel the current models, including the S80 are poorly built. And their fuel economy and handling is just as bad.

      I'm not impressed with Mercedes and stayed away from them altogether.

      So at the end I would say that I got 80% of a BMW for about 70% the price.


      Modified by spindoc at 9:58 PM 3-9-2008


    6. 03-10-2008 11:04 AM #6
      While contemplating getting rid of my 07 4mo wagon I test drove the Volvo xc70 wagon...that was the closest replacement in that price range. The A4 avant was just too small to consider as was the bmw 3 series wagon. And of course the 5 series wagon and the a6 wagon too much money. I really loved the xc70's room and comfort level and the color choices available far exceeded those of the Variant. It road very nicely and had quite a luxurious feel. However it sucked gasoline and it didnt have nearly the power of the vr6. Now I could have lived without vr6 power as the volvo engine was very smooth and I dont get on my cars very often but the gas mileage thing was the deal breaker. The engine in the 4 mo wagon is years ahead of the volvo engine in terms of efficiency.
      So Im back into another vr6 variant and loving it. There really isnt anything like it on the road.I love the dynaudio and the sport seats something my 07 4mo didnt have.
      Oh yeah ,I was very interested in the new EX 35 infiniti but it was too small. Too bad they got that one wrong because I love driving cars people dont see very often. Kinda shocked that Nissan blew that one.I thought for sure the new suv/wagon would have been the right size.



      Modified by higby5 at 8:06 AM 3-10-2008

    7. 03-10-2008 12:11 PM #7
      Quote, originally posted by psychwarlord »

      Could one say the VR6 Passat is 90% of these cars at 70% of the price?

      What would you say?

      BMW 5-series - Yes. it may be a better sports car, but way more expensive with comparable options to the 4motion VR6. No one is cone racing these cars, so you won't notice the difference in handling.

      Audi A6- Yes, absolutely. I own an A6, and while it is a wonderful car, way to expensive to compare to the well-equipped and more powerful 4motion VR6.

      Mercedes E350 - Yes. but closer. Having driven a loaner E350 when the A6 was in the shop, I'd say the interior was comparable to the Passat, while the acceleration, handling, braking were inferior. So for the money, yes, the Passat wins.

      Volvo - Yes. It's a Ford, so need to explain.

      Get the Passat. You won't be disappointed.


    8. 03-10-2008 04:00 PM #8
      Having owned a '06 3.6 Passat and now a BMW 550i, I can tell you the Passat is no where near the same class as any BMW.

    9. Member sbachmeier's Avatar
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      03-10-2008 10:22 PM #9
      Quote, originally posted by thenew3 »
      But I do miss my 328i on some occasions. While many vehicles these days are coming close to driving like a BMW, none of them do drive exactly like an BMW.

      I have to agree with you there. I had an '85 E30 325e not that long ago, and even with over 200,000 miles on the clock, that damn thing drove like hot butter on breakfast toast. I came back to VW because I needed a bigger car for the money, and now the Passat Variant seems to be just the right vehicle for me.

      2010 Passat Variant Komfort : Island Gray : 2.0 TSI + DSG, FTW!

    10. 03-11-2008 07:45 AM #10
      I have owned many BMW, including the 530 and latest was a 545. I rent many cars for work in Germany, lots of Passats, some BMW, many times the A6. The newest A6 and the newest 5 series are far better cars than the Passat for the Autoboahn. No question, not even close. And, in the USA, my BMW's had much less interior squeaks and rattles and were more solid feeling (just compare the center console and you will see what I mean). That said, the Passat costs much less, is easier to drive, has better ergonomics and more interior storage compartments. I have a Passat 4 Motion and for the USA where we never drive over 110 MPH, the Passat 4 Motion wagon is a killer deal. I do hate the squeaks and rattles though....



    11. 03-11-2008 09:21 AM #11
      How can people keep comparing 5 series BMW"s and the Audi A6 to the Passat.Its entirely unfair. They are in different leagues price wise. News flash....the Passat is a much better car than the Toyota Corrola....I know I have driven them both!! Give me a break.
      Try comparing the Passat to other vehicles in its price range.

    12. Member Pimp4cheddar's Avatar
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      03-11-2008 10:27 AM #12
      Interesting Thread...

      My boss had a 2007 E500. After riding around in that...and looking at my interior on my 2.0T. Their pretty much identical...(minus the Navi, passanger seat power options, heated seats and soft leather)

      I live in FL...I don't need heated seats
      I ride by myself...I don't need power in my passanger seat
      I actually really like my seats!

      However...I DO want a Navi

      It's the same damn size as a A6. I compared it on Edmunds.com. Compare the interior/lenght/width/trunk space/height and all those aspects on Edmunds...That's what helped me make my decision. It has the same numbers as the A6, but just the engine of an A4.

      It's one hell of a bang for the buck, plus it doesn't make you feel like your driving a Hyundai...


    13. Member Pimp4cheddar's Avatar
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      03-11-2008 10:40 AM #13
      1 more thing....every person I know that has had a BMW, says there's nothing like it. My boss traded his E500 for a 750Li about 3 weeks ago. I asked why didn't he get the S550 or LS470 and he said he test drove them all, but no car he has ever driven has felt like a BMW...

      So I do believe BMW's have an advantage over VW's (besides the price), however if comparing car vs. price. VW wins everytime!

      I'm driving a 5 series for the price that I would pay for a base 3 series...


    14. Member Pimp4cheddar's Avatar
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      03-11-2008 10:44 AM #14
      Quote, originally posted by higby5 »
      How can people keep comparing 5 series BMW"s and the Audi A6 to the Passat.Its entirely unfair. They are in different leagues price wise. News flash....the Passat is a much better car than the Toyota Corrola....I know I have driven them both!! Give me a break.
      Try comparing the Passat to other vehicles in its price range.


      Kinda true, however the point is to forget about $$$ for half of the convo. Focus on the car your driving and the others. Compare what they offer, and NOW bring price into the equation.

      Once you do that...ask yourself..."Is the Adaptive Cruise Control worth an extra $20,000?"


    15. 03-11-2008 11:28 AM #15
      BMW's are nice cars, but not for everyone. I have driven an M3, 328 and X3. Aside from handling, none of these BMW's were night and day better than our VW Passat. In fact, the cheap plastic interior on the X3 was more reminiscent of a Dodge than a German luxury brand.

      The downside to that great handling for anyone living in the upper Midwest is that a BMW will rattle, jolt and bang you to no end. If you don't live in a freeze-thaw climate with snow plows and road salt for 4 months, you won't understand how rough a BMW (especially an M3) is on a Wisconsin road.

      One other BMW pet peeve of mine is their pricing. Essentially, every desirable feature is an extra grouped in an expensive package. You must add $10K minimum to the base for features that are standard on competing luxury brands.


    16. Member x9t's Avatar
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      03-11-2008 11:35 AM #16
      I agree the passat is a good value. Its not as nice as the 5, A6.. but its still german to me. I drove a buddys base 3 series and although it drove great.. it had none of the options of my car and it was still more expensive. I do want a BMW (because the way they drive) but way to much $$ for me at this point... it seems i would waste the car around my area.

      Yeah and we all know BMWs drive great.. not even audi can keep up with them so I dont expect VW to..

      JT

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    17. 03-11-2008 09:30 PM #17
      The funny thing with all the comments is that in the US folks drive an average of 65 mph (if not less) on the highway and in general cannot drive for lick. So paying an extra 25,000.00 for a BMW 5 or Audi A6 seems a bit ridiculous unless one does not care about $ and only cares about image. The interior space of the Passat Wagon is awesome, it is well built, reliable and reasonably priced. In order to offer a 30K wagon VW has to cut some cost, so all the fancy stuff (useless in my opinion) that you will get in a BMW or A6 is simply not there. I honestly think that if you compare the driving behavior of all those cars going at 80 mph on the highway you won't see much of a difference. If you leaved in Germany you might be able to say that at 120 mph my A6 handled better but again I would not bet on it. I drive an A3 myself with the same engine as the wagon and I can honestly say that in a staright line at 90-100mph I can't see a single difference between the two cars. On the other end I am not expert either

    18. 03-12-2008 12:41 PM #18
      My wife and I had the same conundrum when we were looking for my car.

      I wanted a fun car for a change which handled like a dream. The size of the rear seating was one of the requirements, as well as Navigation and other safety and usability features.

      The BMW, Audi and Passat ended up on the short list. Didn't consider the Volvo because I didn't care much for the styling. Mercedes has a bad rep for reliability, so it was also eliminated. The Acura was out due to the terrible handling and turning radius. The Lexus ES330 wasn't my cup of tea.

      The BMW 3 series was too small in the rear, and moving up to the 5 had a bigger interior, but the cost with options shot up way over $50K.

      The Audi A4 looked nice, but also had inadequate rear seating - and hence, eliminated. Given the pricing for the A6, that was also eliminated.

      The v6 Passat fit the bill for us. A really fun car to drive, and when fully loaded, can be had for less than $35K!

      At that price, many will question why I would pay an entry-lux price for a non-luxury brand. In my opinion, I paid for the car I LOVE to drive, not the brand.

      The Audi and BMW may invariably have better appointments and handling compared to the Passat, but the 40% increase in cost doesn't justify the 10% increase in performance.

      For those who can afford such a cost, more power to you.


    19. Member
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      03-16-2008 01:13 PM #19
      Thank you for the interesting perspectives

      Generally, people seem to agree that Passat falls about 10% short of BMW while costing about 30-40% less - and the shortfall is in high-speed handling characteristics and perhaps road-feel.

      Currently, I have a 2001.5 Passat manual transmission wagon ($26,000) and my wife has a 2007 Volvo XC70 wagon (leased, but would sell at 36,000).

      The Passat is a much better handling car and is planted on the road better, but the Volvo is more heavily built (heavy metal doors!) and has a much more plush interior - handling/steering is rubbery and vague. Each car is different and appeals to a different aesthetic.

      The point I wanted to make, however, is that while many of us would like to have the best possible car, like a BMW 5-series, they appear to be prohibitively costly, and so the Passat, with similar, if "10% less", appeal wins us over with its relatively much lower cost.

      "One day" I would like to have a BMW 5-series wagon - but will that day ever come when it costs $65,000 and I can have something just as roomy/safe and almost as much fun for $35,000?


    20. 03-16-2008 09:12 PM #20
      Why not get a used 2003 530it with low miles?

    21. Member
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      03-17-2008 07:35 PM #21
      Actually I was thinking of getting a Routan until I found out it's a Chrysler knock-off

    22. Member Pimp4cheddar's Avatar
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      03-18-2008 09:31 AM #22
      Quote, originally posted by mczarski »
      Why not get a used 2003 530it with low miles?


      It's 5-6 years old....

      I don't understand why someone would settle for a 5 year old "BMW" when they could get a 2008 "VW"....I just don't understand the logic...it's like they only focus on name, rather than the overall picture...

      Please explain...


    23. 03-18-2008 11:08 AM #23
      Those new S80's very much deserves to be in that class. It is an awesome car with very little Ford interference (unlike the P1 platform i.e. S40/V50). Volvo learned it's lesson there.

      With the 4.4L V8, the S80 is an awesome car. I would buy one of those over a 5 Series or E series Mercedes ANY day! If I had the money, a Passat would not even be considered. the VR6 passat does not even come close to the same class as the S80.


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      03-18-2008 02:20 PM #24
      Quote, originally posted by joakim6945 »
      Those new S80's very much deserves to be in that class. It is an awesome car with very little Ford interference (unlike the P1 platform i.e. S40/V50). Volvo learned it's lesson there.

      With the 4.4L V8, the S80 is an awesome car. I would buy one of those over a 5 Series or E series Mercedes ANY day! If I had the money, a Passat would not even be considered. the VR6 passat does not even come close to the same class as the S80.

      For actual content vs. price, a loaded 4mo passat wins hands down.

      For instance, taking the S80 you mentioned. With nearly identical options and similar engine/hp etc... A S80 T6 costs you $52,215. (v8 with similar options runs about $60k, not worth the extra few ponies)

      Granted the S80 can be tarted up more for more money.... but as far a price/content. the passat wins. Reliability is a whole nother issue.

      2009 CC Lux 3.6 4mo
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    25. 03-18-2008 03:02 PM #25
      You are right, but don't forget that with a Volvo, you will not have to mess with any lag/CELs/creaks/oil pumps issues, etc. The Passat may win on value since you can get the ame bells and whistles, but not on quality and luxury. The S80 V8 with the Haldex AWD would smoke your Passat 3.6 4-Motion, but you are right. You will pay more.

      Another issue is that Volvo uses fiberoptics in their newer cars. VW still uses regular electrical wiring. I.e. not as dependable.

      But you are right, I guess you get what you pay for.

      PS: I still like my 2.0t pck 1.


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      03-18-2008 06:40 PM #26
      Quote, originally posted by joakim6945 »
      The S80 V8 with the Haldex AWD would smoke your Passat 3.6 4-Motion, but you are right. You will pay more.

      I'll take that race.... all the rags quote the v8 s80 at about 5.7-6.0 0-60 and 14.2@99.

      Myself in a bonestock 3.6 4mo ran 14.0@100.1 last year.

      Fiber optics? That's gotta cut down on wiring bulk between controllers, esp with the bandwidth available.

      2009 CC Lux 3.6 4mo
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    27. Member x9t's Avatar
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      03-19-2008 05:29 PM #27
      I always forget how quick that 3.6 is stock. i dont think I could keep up with it pass 100mph.. 14.00 flat huh.. thats faster than the base 5 and A6.

      JT

      Passat B6 6MT 2.0TFSI, Spork Pkg, Bixenons, Giac,EVOMS Intake, Neuspeed SS, NS Rear S B, Koni FSD/Eibach Pro kit, Peloquin LSD, VF Mounts, Forge DV and FMIC, 18x9 Wheels,Badgeless Grille, Hidef Rear Bumper/Spoiler/Tips, Votex Side, Abt Front lip..
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    28. 03-19-2008 09:59 PM #28
      Well in his case he is driving a 6-7 year old car right now, so he might not be as concerned with the new factor. If he does not want the depreciation of buying a new car, he could buy a low mileage used for half the cost of new. The BMW also has no timing belt, no turbo, and the straight six, although not a powerhouse has been around for over 30 years, gets decent mpg, and is easy to maintain. I would be happy with one just as much as I would love to have an 08 Passat Wagon. However, a new Passat Wagon will set you back $27k(Order Only Manual Tranny), while the used BMW can be had for $15-18k. The same argument can be said about new vs. old. Some people only focus on the fact that the car is new, while everyone's overall picture is different.

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