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Old 8th December 2011, 17:47   #1
Zed
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Default An Enjoyable Conundrum - What Car in Germany?

Thanks to changes to the company car policy in my organization I have wider options for my next company car which needs to be finalized in Early 2012. Passats and A4 were the past the standard standards. Ive been using a fully loaded passat Station wagon (with the dual clucth auto box) for over a year now and its been a real revelation for the 60K odd kms that Ive subjected it to across Europe. Am currently based in southern Germany.

Coming back to the situation on hand, the limiting factors are
(1) Engine size (2 Lts or below)
(2) carbon emissions less that 135 g/km - which rules out gasoline options
(3) Must be a 4 door sedan \ stationwagon \ notchback.

Needless to say - and wild and wonderful colours & option tend to be frowned upon at the workplace and attract higher monthly lease rates on account of their diminished re-sale value. The monthly lease limit is pretty generous and will not be a limiting factor for the segment.

Realisticaly speaking the Passat, A4, A5, C class, 3 series, the Volvo S60 etc are candidates. The A4 & the A5 present the best value propositions and I tend to agree. But im smitten by the 2012 C class, specially with the aggressive grill option, the one with the oversized three pointed star. Thats pretty much on the acceptable limit of office car norms.

I travel quite a bit on the A-Bahns within Germany and to Italy (across the legendary san bernardino pass). For now its just the wife & I although we do occasionally travel with friends. Luggage space is not a deciding factor. Front seating comfort certainly is. I enjoy my driving but am past the point where im looking for Elise-esque handling and involvement. On that account the 3 series is not vey high on the list as it seems the least comfortable of the lot. Have to admit that Im clueless about the 2012 version.
Safety is something that is high on my priority list which was the only reason why the Volvo was even considered. Though I have to admit the S60s design is slowly growing on me after having seen it a few times on the road. I also have a soft corner for the Passar CC. I could go on but that defeats the whole purpose of this thread. Which is....

....Looking for pearls of wisdom from fellow Bhpians on what car \ which model to shortlist.
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Old 8th December 2011, 18:44   #2
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Default Re: An Enjoyable Conundrum - What Car ??

2012 C200 CDI with AMG Kit would be my suggestion. Looks good with the DRLs and the oversized Star. I had the opportunity to drive the C200 CGI for two days and loved it.

A5 is also a good option but I doubt if it comes with a 2L Engine.
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Old 8th December 2011, 19:09   #3
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Default Re: An Enjoyable Conundrum - What Car ??

Why don't you consider the new S4.The '4' from Audi had been face-lifted recently, making it more appealing. It looks very mean and takes after it's bigger sibling, the A5.

The new BMW F30 3-Series is a tasty prospect as well
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Old 8th December 2011, 19:58   #4
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Default Re: An Enjoyable Conundrum - What Car ??

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Why don't you consider the new S4.The '4' from Audi had been face-lifted recently, making it more appealing. It looks very mean and takes after it's bigger sibling, the A5.

The new BMW F30 3-Series is a tasty prospect as well
Does the the S4 come with any diesel motor? AFAIK, it has only a supercharged V6 on offer. If that's the case, it might not suit the thread-starter's purpose, as he clearly ruled out gasoline engines because of the restricted emissions.

@ Zed

I think newer Mercs look astonishing. Good to see Mercs ditching the familiar and soft looking face on their cars. Get the new C and then go-on modding it on the lines of the new Black series!

But if you drive enthusiastically, get the new 3-series bimmer. I read a few tweets by Indian journos who where invited for the first-drive of this car, and all of them were going gaga about its chassis. Most of them were also complaining about how the engine doesn't match the much capable chassis.
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Old 8th December 2011, 20:02   #5
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Does the the S4 come with any diesel motor? AFAIK, it has only a supercharged V6 on offer. If that's the case, it might not suit the thread-starter's purpose, as he clearly ruled out gasoline engines because of the restricted emissions.
That's true. The S4 doesn't come with a specific diesel engine yet. However, he could opt for the top-end diesel A4 with the S-Line package. That's where I was getting at in the first place.
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Old 8th December 2011, 20:12   #6
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Default Re: An Enjoyable Conundrum - What Car ??

He needs an engine with a cubic capacity of 2 litres or LESS.
Petrol or no petrol the S4 has a 3 litre supercharged engine. There is no question of even looking at such cars.
Which one to consider - Zed, as far as i remember the A5 came with an option of 2.7 tdi and 3.0 tdi engines. Since both those variants cant be considered, please check if the A5 is offered in the 2.0 tdi 170 odd hp guise in Germany. If it is, it would make most sense since you said its just you and your wife more often than not. The A5 would be a 2-door with a seat suitable for short adults at the back.
Also, just to specify, IIRC Audi only offers Quattro AWD with models with a capacity of 3000cc or More. If quattro is offered on the 2.0 TDI A5, would make sense to go for it considering Germany's harsh winters and insane speeds over the Autobahn. If not, do remember that it would be offered in FWD.
Good luck
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Old 8th December 2011, 20:13   #7
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Default Re: An Enjoyable Conundrum - What Car ??

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Originally Posted by jaguar.runs View Post
2012 C200 CDI with AMG Kit would be my suggestion. Looks good with the DRLs and the oversized Star. I had the opportunity to drive the C200 CGI for two days and loved it.

A5 is also a good option but I doubt if it comes with a 2L Engine.
The C200 CDI is an option. Not sure if its an AMG kit but there is trim option with the agressive front grill.

The 2 Ltr TDI from the A4 is also available in the A5.
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Old 8th December 2011, 20:19   #8
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Default Re: An Enjoyable Conundrum - What Car ??

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That's true. The S4 doesn't come with a specific diesel engine yet. However, he could opt for the top-end diesel A4 with the S-Line package. That's where I was getting at in the first place.
No issues.

S4 and A4 are all very confusing. Just remember reading the S4 offered a supercharged V6 and a it's a super-performance avatar of the A4.
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Old 8th December 2011, 20:20   #9
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He needs an engine with a cubic capacity of 2 litres or LESS.
Petrol or no petrol the S4 has a 3 litre supercharged engine. There is no question of even looking at such cars.
Which one to consider - Zed, as far as i remember the A5 came with an option of 2.7 tdi and 3.0 tdi engines. Since both those variants cant be considered, please check if the A5 is offered in the 2.0 tdi 170 odd hp guise in Germany. If it is, it would make most sense since you said its just you and your wife more often than not. The A5 would be a 2-door with a seat suitable for short adults at the back.
Also, just to specify, IIRC Audi only offers Quattro AWD with models with a capacity of 3000cc or More. If quattro is offered on the 2.0 TDI A5, would make sense to go for it considering Germany's harsh winters and insane speeds over the Autobahn. If not, do remember that it would be offered in FWD.
Good luck
Yes . The A5 with the 2 Lts 170 hp mill meets the CO2 limit (with the manual transmission). Cant opt for the coupe - have to opt for the 4 door notchback.

To be honest I havent felt the need for 4wd on the autobahn - wet or dry. As long as theres a good set of summer \ winter tyres that I can count on. Although I have colleagues who swear by Awd versions (even for the passat) for driving in winter.
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Old 8th December 2011, 20:24   #10
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Default Re: An Enjoyable Conundrum - What Car ??

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Yes . The A5 with the 2 Lts 170 hp mill meets the CO2 limit (with the manual transmission). Cant opt for the coupe - have to opt for the 4 door notchback.

To be honest I havent felt the need for 4wd on the autobahn - wet or dry. As long as theres a good set of summer \ winter tyres that I can count on. Although I have colleagues who swear by Awd versions (even for the passat) for driving in winter.

Come to think of it, that makes sense too. Have had the opportunity of driving on the Autobahn from Cologne to Frankfurt airport for a brief period and the driving styles/manners/road discipline and the sheer quality of the road surface are so dam good that most times quattro might not be required as a life saving mechanism.
But tell me this, how about in winter ?? Wouldn't Quattro be an absolute blessing on days when it snows non stop with or without winter tyres ? Road surface is slippery , unpredictable etc. Just curious about how much difference it actually makes in day to day life when it counts.
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Old 8th December 2011, 20:43   #11
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Default Re: An Enjoyable Conundrum - What Car ??

Appreciate the feedback gents! Keep it coming.

@ Shivank - I guess id trade the handling finesse of the beemer against the comfort factor in the Audi \ Merc. At some point during a 7 hour high speed drive im sure you will feel the same way too . Nothing against the beemer - If I were spending more time driving in the twistie B - roads out here, the beemer would have been a strong contender.

@ Suhaas - the s4 package adds a lot of cost. Remember I still have to pay 1% of the on road cost of the car, every month, as a tax for the privilege of using the office car for personal use. This further permits my wife to legally drive my office car. At the end of the day I dont want to push the basic cost up by too much opting for high cost add ons. Im keeping 40K Euros as the limit - i.e 400 Euros as tax per month. Not more.

I may push this limit for a three pointed star on the front grille


The 135 g\kg limit for CO2 pretty much rules out every gasoline engine option - even the small mills, which I wouldnt opt for anyways.
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Old 8th December 2011, 20:55   #12
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Come to think of it, that makes sense too. Have had the opportunity of driving on the Autobahn from Cologne to Frankfurt airport for a brief period and the driving styles/manners/road discipline and the sheer quality of the road surface are so dam good that most times quattro might not be required as a life saving mechanism.
But tell me this, how about in winter ?? Wouldn't Quattro be an absolute blessing on days when it snows non stop with or without winter tyres ? Road surface is slippery , unpredictable etc. Just curious about how much difference it actually makes in day to day life when it counts.
Thats a hard one to answer. I guess the best way I can put it is - if you want to push your car to the limit in winter, an all wheel drive (or atleast Rear wheel drive ) is the recommended way to do it.

Under normal driving, I have never felt the need for 4 wd. Remember there is no option to drive without all weather or winter tyres when it snows. Thats a punishable offence.

Im not going to be pushing my company car to its performance boundaries, except for top speed - I normally nail the pedal to metal on the A.bahn when the weather is good

Last edited by Zed : 8th December 2011 at 20:56.
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Old 8th December 2011, 21:03   #13
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@ Suhaas - the s4 package adds a lot of cost. Remember I still have to pay 1% of the on road cost of the car, every month, as a tax for the privilege of using the office car for personal use. This further permits my wife to legally drive my office car. At the end of the day I dont want to push the basic cost up by too much opting for high cost add ons. Im keeping 40K Euros as the limit - i.e 400 Euros as tax per month. Not more.
I suppose the new Jaguar XF 2.2 diesel will shortly be available. It's the perfect car for you, I'm of the opinion.

Jaguar XF 2.2 diesel TSE driven full road test car review - BBC Top Gear - BBC Top Gear

It may fall short of the CO2 emissions, but the car is definitely worth a look. Can't be ignored!
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Old 8th December 2011, 21:15   #14
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I suppose the new Jaguar XF 2.2 diesel will shortly be available. It's the perfect car for you, I'm of the opinion.

Jaguar XF 2.2 diesel TSE driven full road test car review - BBC Top Gear - BBC Top Gear

It may fall short of the CO2 emissions, but the car is definitely worth a look. Can't be ignored!
Im an Aston - Jag kinda guy. A Jag in the company car park is probably the best way to attract the wrath of of senior brass (and HR!). This isnt really part of my career plan
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Old 8th December 2011, 21:51   #15
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Default Re: An Enjoyable Conundrum - What Car ??

Just go for the A5 2.0 TDi. I am sure it will keep you more than happy.
If FWD is an issue for you then maybe you could look at the C ( i just detest Mercs) Lol.
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