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Old 8th June 2018, 23:16   #1
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Default 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

Hi everyone,

We are currently looking for a car in the 50L range and had a few options in mind.

Some Background:
-We don't drive a whole lot and usage will probably top out at 11,000 kms per year
-Want good handling and acceleration
-Location is Delhi NCR (This factors in when considering petrol vs diesel because of the NGT ban)
-Will require decent legroom as we plan on travelling together as a family of 4


The consideration set:
-BMW 3GT (320d)
I have taken a couple of TDs for this car and am pretty happy with it. The handling isn't as good as the 3 series or the XE but am willing to overlook that because it ticks all the other boxes (It's fairly spacious etc.). One reason in favour for a diesel motor is the fact that resale value is better than petrol, but will this backfire when selling it 7-8 years later because of the 10+ year old ban on diesel cars, or can that be circumvented by selling it in another state?

-BMW 3GT (330i)
Wasn't able to try this very car but tried the 630i GT instead as it has the same engine. Acceleration was much better than the 320d and given our limited usage, this car might make more sense. It is a couple of lakh rupees more expensive than the diesel and coupled with the lesser mileage and lower resale value, my dad is a bit jittery about this although I am in favour (I'm a 21 year old who's pretty passionate about cars and driving whereas the rest of the family isn't).

-Jaguar XE/XF diesel
Drove the XE diesel and rear legroom is a major issue. I also thought that the BMW was more fun to drive. AMP motors in Gurgaon are saying that a 2017 base model (Pure) XF diesel will be available with a heavy discount. I am planning on driving the XF as well but am not too inclined. The GT makes more sense in my opinion.

The top end petrol motors on the Jags aren't accessible for TDs and are only sold in the top Portfolio variant which stretches the budget.

We also tried the A6 (which will get replaced next year) and the S60 cross country. The Audi wasn't exciting and dad isn't keen on the Volvo.

The new 3 series (G20) will probably be at the Paris motor show in September and could hit India in mid-end 2019 which worries me. But the 3GT should be 'new' for a while? However, note that there are rumours that BMW is planning on axing the 3GT altogether due to low global sales.

So the questions I want to ask are:
1) Which car should we go for? Other cars I haven't mentioned are also welcome.
2) Petrol vs Diesel? Given the performance, our usage, resale value, etc.
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Old 9th June 2018, 11:44   #2
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Default re: 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

I would say go for 3GT petrol from the options listed. It makes more sense given your low usage, and the fact that you live in NCR.

Stay away from diesels if you tend to keep the car for more than 7-8 years, due to NGT bans. By the recent turn of events in the industry, the trends may change in other states too by then, and even resale markets would favor petrols.
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Old 9th June 2018, 12:13   #3
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Default re: 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

I would suggest going in for the GLC 300 or Discovery Sport (Petrol). Both of them have about 240 horses and have engine stats similar to the 330i. Their prices are quite close to the 3GT as well. They might not handle like say an XE but rest of the boxes would be ticked and would not be affected by the NGT ban even if you would keep the car for a longer time.
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Old 9th June 2018, 13:08   #4
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Default re: 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

Well you're in a good spot and have plenty of options to choose from. You have only mentioned sedans so im guessing you are only interested in getting a sedan then. However ill mention that in 58 lakhs OTR, you can get the all new X3. The X1 is pretty decent too. You can get top model for under 50 lakhs OTR easily. Then there is the all new upcoming XC40, thatll definitely be worth a look. If you can hold your purchase, do so. I know your father said he aint too keen on the Volvo but its the safest car in the game. You can even get the Discovery and Evoques in that range but i fear the top models may be out of budget.

As for sedans, if i were you i would pick the A6. You can get the A6 at 50 OTR right now, its got both a petrol and diesel. Both engines are more or less equal in terms of performance and the real charm the car holds is its the only car with air suspension in that range. Im not sure about whether the 3GT's have air suspension but its a wonderful feature to have. Remember the A6 is simply one segment above the 3 series for a reason. The drive aint BMW level but it is definitely good enough.

Also I dont get why you havent mentioned the C-class. The C250d packs a wallop and can be had at around 53 OTR. The C-class petrol is also pretty strong. It is the most sorted and sold model in its range. The C-class does better than the 3 and A4 in most-to-all boxes.

Since you are looking to keep the car for 7-8 years, dont consider resale. Every car mentioned by you or me is going to be replaced by then and resale value would be very poor of a luxury car driven over 60,000kms (minimum) after 7 years and one or maybe even two generations old. Dont expect 1-2 lakhs of a difference will make such a burden then. So resale shouldnt be part of the thought process, i believe. However if you look to upgrade or swap in 3-4 years time, then resale would matter. But in 3-4 years time, expect 50% value and 7-8 years time, half the 50% value. So in a 50 lakh car, you can do the math. Not all that.

As for petrol/diesel conundrum, the region will face issues. Why dont you look at prius or the Accord hybrid or even Camry. These 3 are all hybrids and are exempt of the odd even ban.

Then there is Lexus. You can get the ES sedan or the NX SUV in that range. Living in Delhi-NCR region, these cars are the ones to go for. The NX is 54-56 OTR and ES is a shade under 60.
If i were you, i would buy the Lexus without doubt. And if it werent Lexus, then mostly petrols.

Cars in preference:
1) Lexus, ES or NX. Either would do
2) Audi A6
3) Mercedes C class
4) BMW X3
5) BMW 330i GT

happy hunting
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Old 9th June 2018, 15:07   #5
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Default re: 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bernabei View Post
Hi everyone,

We are currently looking for a car in the 50L range and had a few options in mind.

Some Background:
-We don't drive a whole lot and usage will probably top out at 11,000 kms per year
-Want good handling and acceleration
-Location is Delhi NCR (This factors in when considering petrol vs diesel because of the NGT ban)
-Will require decent legroom as we plan on travelling together as a family of 4


The consideration set:
-BMW 3GT (320d)
I have taken a couple of TDs for this car and am pretty happy with it. The handling isn't as good as the 3 series or the XE but am willing to overlook that because it ticks all the other boxes (It's fairly spacious etc.). One reason in favour for a diesel motor is the fact that resale value is better than petrol, but will this backfire when selling it 7-8 years later because of the 10+ year old ban on diesel cars, or can that be circumvented by selling it in another state?

-BMW 3GT (330i)
Wasn't able to try this very car but tried the 630i GT instead as it has the same engine. Acceleration was much better than the 320d and given our limited usage, this car might make more sense. It is a couple of lakh rupees more expensive than the diesel and coupled with the lesser mileage and lower resale value, my dad is a bit jittery about this although I am in favour (I'm a 21 year old who's pretty passionate about cars and driving whereas the rest of the family isn't).

-Jaguar XE/XF diesel
Drove the XE diesel and rear legroom is a major issue. I also thought that the BMW was more fun to drive. AMP motors in Gurgaon are saying that a 2017 base model (Pure) XF diesel will be available with a heavy discount. I am planning on driving the XF as well but am not too inclined. The GT makes more sense in my opinion.

The top end petrol motors on the Jags aren't accessible for TDs and are only sold in the top Portfolio variant which stretches the budget.

We also tried the A6 (which will get replaced next year) and the S60 cross country. The Audi wasn't exciting and dad isn't keen on the Volvo.

The new 3 series (G20) will probably be at the Paris motor show in September and could hit India in mid-end 2019 which worries me. But the 3GT should be 'new' for a while? However, note that there are rumours that BMW is planning on axing the 3GT altogether due to low global sales.

So the questions I want to ask are:
1) Which car should we go for? Other cars I haven't mentioned are also welcome.
2) Petrol vs Diesel? Given the performance, our usage, resale value, etc.
I'm exactly in the same stage as you right now in planning for an upgrade.

First of all forget the X1. The Msport will cost around 48L on road but features wise the Volvo XC40 is way better and a more easier choice. Not the GLA, Q3, X1 have look at the XC40. Really more bang for the buck and same fun as the others.

Secondly even I was pondering about the diesel petrol scenario, but the future is petrol & electric. Diesel will slowly become a commercial fuel and apparently its being said the price of diesel in a couple of years will be more than the petrol (already the gap has reduced so much).

In my opinion 3GT is awesome - both petrol & diesel
Pro is so much leg room and super heavy discounts as BMW is clearing stock because the 3GT will be part of the 4 series family in the future (Rumor i heard) just like the 5GT became the 6GT.
Con - it is in the end of its life cycle along with the 3 series and the new one will be launched by End of 2018 worldwide and mid or end of 2019 in India.

Alternatively I would suggest you look at the 520d sportline. They have some 2017 models which BMW would happily give it in the 55L range (My cousin bought his 520d diesel during March this year due to closing of books for 51 on Road )

Last edited by deepjaju : 9th June 2018 at 15:11.
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Old 9th June 2018, 17:24   #6
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Default re: 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

Thanks for the info everyone.

Sorry, I forgot to mention that we are only looking for sedans and will be driving the car ourselves.

Factoring in what everyone said and having gone to the BMW dealer today, we have decided that we will only be going for a petrol car. Being an impulsive buyer, my dad wanted to close the deal then and there on the 330i GT but I somehow persuaded him to give me some more time. As the situation stands now and because of the sensitive time line, we will not be able to try any more cars and the toss up is now between the 330i GT which is coming out to be for 53 OTR vs the 530i for 57 OTR (the 5 series just entered the equation today).

Pros of 330i GT
-More practical with added ground clearance
-panoramic roof
-HUD, adaptive lights
-active spoiler (probably doesn't matter though)
-Better boot (automatic and opens wider). But the space saver will be annoying

Cons of 330i GT
-3 series life cycle coming to an end and the 3 GT will probably be phased out (but what role will this have?)
-even the top end 330i GT M sport doesn't get M suspension
-interiors seem dated

Pros of 530i
-Brand new (generation released in 2017)
-Ride is better
-Feels plush vis-a-vis the GT
-More colour options (just have esotril blue on the GT which dad isn't a massive fan of)
-A segment above the 3

Cons of 530i
-Not as practical
-No adaptive lights (how good are the adaptive lights vs regular lights?)
-No HUD
-No panoramic sunroof

Quote:
Originally Posted by mijnoirhammer67 View Post

As for sedans, if i were you i would pick the A6. You can get the A6 at 50 OTR right now, its got both a petrol and diesel. Both engines are more or less equal in terms of performance and the real charm the car holds is its the only car with air suspension in that range. Im not sure about whether the 3GT's have air suspension but its a wonderful feature to have. Remember the A6 is simply one segment above the 3 series for a reason. The drive aint BMW level but it is definitely good enough.

Then there is Lexus. You can get the ES sedan or the NX SUV in that range. Living in Delhi-NCR region, these cars are the ones to go for. The NX is 54-56 OTR and ES is a shade under 60.
If i were you, i would buy the Lexus without doubt. And if it werent Lexus, then mostly petrols.
We didn't take the A6 for a long TD and the stretch of road we were on was pretty smooth so couldn't feel the the air suspension doing its magic. But yes, it would be a valuable addition. However, seeing a new A6 on the road a few months later will make me cringe.

We had tried the NX and it was mid 60 OTR. Also it didn't feel as punchy as the BMWs. They aren't selling the ES right now as a new model is due in September so there is no ES till then.

Quote:
Originally Posted by deepjaju View Post
In my opinion 3GT is awesome - both petrol & diesel
Pro is so much leg room and super heavy discounts as BMW is clearing stock because the 3GT will be part of the 4 series family in the future (Rumor i heard) just like the 5GT became the 6GT.
Con - it is in the end of its life cycle along with the 3 series and the new one will be launched by End of 2018 worldwide and mid or end of 2019 in India.
Bird auto here is giving me 5L off on the GT vs 4L off on the 5 series. Do you think there is there scope for improvement here?

So what do you guys think about the 330i GT vs 530i scenario we are in?
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Old 9th June 2018, 23:44   #7
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While the 3GT looks and feels like a Bigger 3 Series, the new 5 Series does the same with the panache of a smaller 7 series.

The Adaptive lights shouldnt be a deal breaker, the 530i has pretty decent ones . The 5 series for sure handles better than the 3GT as well. For a net difference of Rs5 Lakhs , the 530i is a no barrier. Havent factored in the snob value yet.
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Old 10th June 2018, 00:48   #8
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Unless you want the practicality of the 3 GT I would say go for the petrol 5. It will definitely feel plusher overall, more special, has a much better back seat for your passengers. The added advantage of being more recent its lifecycle compared to the 3 GT. To my mind it is a no brainer in favour of the 5.
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Old 10th June 2018, 02:34   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bernabei View Post



Bird auto here is giving me 5L off on the GT vs 4L off on the 5 series. Do you think there is there scope for improvement here?

So what do you guys think about the 330i GT vs 530i scenario we are in?
Considering the 3GT is at the end of its life cycle only a 5L off is certainly a let down. Unless you save atleast 10L over the 530i I would definitely go in for the 530i. It's a much better car (might be the best in class) in all areas. As for the little extra boot space or practicality, one does not buy a BMW sedan just for practicality. Driving dynamics, suspension (read graajas thread on the 3gt suspension) and overall look and feel of the 530i is much better than the 3gt. If you do have to sell the car after 4 years this 5L difference will easily be covered at the time of resale being a newer model from a higher segment. Best of luck and congrats on your new beemer.
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Old 10th June 2018, 09:09   #10
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Default re: 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bernabei View Post
So what do you guys think about the 330i GT vs 530i scenario we are in?
Nice twist! It's a no brainer. Go for the 530i. Since the car will always be self driven, the 5 should be the choice. The 5 series stands above 3-GT in all aspects like ride quality, dynamics, comfort, better resale, etc. I would say the practicality of a 5 series will be more than enough given your usage mentioned in your first post. It will definitely benefit you over the 330i GT on the long run. And it is clearly a segment above for little more money.

Last edited by Flyer : 10th June 2018 at 09:14.
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Old 10th June 2018, 09:23   #11
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Default re: 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bernabei View Post
...As the situation stands now and because of the sensitive time line, we will not be able to try any more cars and the toss up is now between the 330i GT which is coming out to be for 53 OTR vs the 530i for 57 OTR (the 5 series just entered the equation today).

...

So what do you guys think about the 330i GT vs 530i scenario we are in?
Choosing between the 330iGT and 530i is going to be a tough one, the same situation I was in, a few months back

Check out my car selection dilemma in the below link.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/test-d...ml#post4376031

To me, it boiled down to this:

530i Advantages:
  • Adaptive suspensions, and tighter handling
  • Better interiors
  • New generation

530i Disadvantages:
  • Lower ground clearance. I tried two test cars and both of them were scraping speed breakers.
  • Lack of features like adaptive LEDs and HUD
  • Being the new generation, it may have issues (like the GC) which will be fixed by BMW in the LCI version.

3GT Advantages:
  • Practicality - the big boot, adaptive LEDs and HUD
  • Being the LCI model, will have all issues sorted out.

3GT Disadvantages:
  • Very soft suspension setup gives you a very comfortable ride at low speeds, but has body roll in the corners.
  • High GC. You can take it on very rough roads without any worry.
  • Almost reaching the End of life. Still, the new generation of the 3GT should happen only in the late 2019 or early 2020 after the new G20 3 Series is released

As I was not worried about the car being in the end of life phase, and as I could fix the suspension issue by upgrading to an M Sport suspension (parts are already ordered), I went ahead with the 3GT.

Adaptive LEDs do make a lot of difference. The way the lights turn with steering input and always point at the road ahead makes them very useful in winding 2 lane roads. They just are SUPERB. Having said that, if your drives are mostly on 4 lane roads, then the regular non-adaptive lights will be as good as adaptive.

Take back to back test drives of the 3GT and the 5 series. Drive the 5 series over speed breakers and rough roads if possible and see if you have issues with ground clearance.

If you are ok with the soft suspensions of the 3GT, then it would be a much practical car.

But if you want a good handling car, then the 5 series would be my suggestion.

Happy hunting!
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Old 10th June 2018, 16:20   #12
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Default re: 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

I think few years down the line 530i will give more satisfaction than 3GT - as normally the case with buying a higher segment car. More thought and effort goes into building higher segment cars which are too subtle to notice at the time of buying.

HUD and Pano roof are nice features to have for sure. I would not pay extra for adaptive headlamps - I rarely drive in the night and the value of it in India where everyone dazzles you is questionable.

Don't be too focused on the price/discount, instead get your favourite ext/interior colour and a design that will stay modern for few years even if it means a bit of premium price and waiting period. Especially BMWs come in some lovely colour combinations compared to other brands, so I would certainly take advantage of that fact and get myself the colour combination I love.

The only thing going for 3GT IMO is its higher GC which puts lot of Indian drivers at ease but there are enough Honda cities and civics plying all over the country so it can't be that bad.
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Old 10th June 2018, 16:41   #13
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Default re: 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

Quote:
Originally Posted by androdev View Post
I would not pay extra for adaptive headlamps - I rarely drive in the night and the value of it in India where everyone dazzles you is questionable...
Just wanted to clarify something about the adaptive headlamps. There are two parts to the adaptive headlights.

The high beam assist is what is useless on Indian roads where everyone is out there to dazzle you and your headlight is doing everything not to dazzle others. It also gets confused a lot with two wheelers on the road. So, I do not use it at all. With the high beam assist turned off and high beam switched on, it is just a regular high beam and when you flash, the oncoming vehicles definitely turn off their high beams.

The adaptive lights is where the light beam turns based on steering input and always lights up the road ahead. I had this on the Jetta and now on the 3 GT and this is a boon on 2 lane roads and hills.

So, if OP does lot of driving on 2 lane roads at night, I would definitely include adaptive lights as part of the buying decision. If there isn't much of driving in the night in 2 lane roads, then adaptive lights do not add much value.

And of course, HUD and pano sun roof should not be the decision making points.

Last edited by graaja : 10th June 2018 at 16:51.
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Old 10th June 2018, 19:06   #14
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Default re: 50-lakh budget. BMW 3GT or something else?

So took a test drive in the 530i itself today and absolutely loved it! Factoring in the above suggestions, we feel that the 530i makes more sense to us.

Quote:
Originally Posted by graaja View Post
Take back to back test drives of the 3GT and the 5 series. Drive the 5 series over speed breakers and rough roads if possible and see if you have issues with ground clearance.

If you are ok with the soft suspensions of the 3GT, then it would be a much practical car.

But if you want a good handling car, then the 5 series would be my suggestion.

Happy hunting!

Driving the 530i over rough roads and high speed breakers, the 530i managed pretty well. There was no underbody contact.


Quote:
Originally Posted by graaja View Post
Just wanted to clarify something about the adaptive headlamps. There are two parts to the adaptive headlights.

The high beam assist is what is useless on Indian roads where everyone is out there to dazzle you and your headlight is doing everything not to dazzle others. It also gets confused a lot with two wheelers on the road. So, I do not use it at all. With the high beam assist turned off and high beam switched on, it is just a regular high beam and when you flash, the oncoming vehicles definitely turn off their high beams.

The adaptive lights is where the light beam turns based on steering input and always lights up the road ahead. I had this on the Jetta and now on the 3 GT and this is a boon on 2 lane roads and hills.

So, if OP does lot of driving on 2 lane roads at night, I would definitely include adaptive lights as part of the buying decision. If there isn't much of driving in the night in 2 lane roads, then adaptive lights do not add much value.

And of course, HUD and pano sun roof should not be the decision making points.

Thanks, this is very useful. Given that we won't be driving too much on hilly roads, I guess it is okay if we give the adaptive headlights a miss, but it would be a cool feature to have!

Quote:
Originally Posted by androdev View Post
I think few years down the line 530i will give more satisfaction than 3GT - as normally the case with buying a higher segment car. More thought and effort goes into building higher segment cars which are too subtle to notice at the time of buying.

HUD and Pano roof are nice features to have for sure. I would not pay extra for adaptive headlamps - I rarely drive in the night and the value of it in India where everyone dazzles you is questionable.

Don't be too focused on the price/discount, instead get your favourite ext/interior colour and a design that will stay modern for few years even if it means a bit of premium price and waiting period. Especially BMWs come in some lovely colour combinations compared to other brands, so I would certainly take advantage of that fact and get myself the colour combination I love.

The only thing going for 3GT IMO is its higher GC which puts lot of Indian drivers at ease but there are enough Honda cities and civics plying all over the country so it can't be that bad.

Sure, this makes a lot of sense.

So apart from Bird automotive in Gurgaon, today, we interacted with Libra Autohaus in Delhi as they were the only ones with the 530i available for a TD.

The demo car had 800kms on it and after the TD, the dealer said he is willing to give me the demo car for 53.25L OTR with a 5yr/60k BSI included(the basic pack). Here, we will not have the first choice of exterior colour (the demo car was white), but interiors will be the one we are after (cognac).

The other option is going for a new 530i for 57 OTR with a basic 5yr/60k BSI and 2+2 yr warranty included.

Libra is saying that the demo car will be available by the end of the month and he will have to touch the ~2.5k odometer mark to be able to justify to BMW for selling it.

So the conundrum is now between:

a)Demo 530i with 2500 kms for 53.25 OTR with 5yr/60k BSI included
b)New 530i for 57 OTR with 5yr/60k BSI and 2+2 warranty included (the extended warranty on its own is worth a lakh)


Given the break in period of these cars and the aggression with which we drive TD cars, what should we go with? The 53.25 price point definitely feels sweet, but is it worth the risk?

Have you ever bought a demo car or know of any related experience?

Also, if anyone has info on Libra Autohaus in Delhi, that would be welcome. I couldn't find a whole lot on team-BHP.
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Old 10th June 2018, 21:07   #15
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Default Which 3 GT? (or maybe something else altogether?)

1. Avoid demo car. I would pay that little bit more and just get the new one.
2. Save some money and pay for max extended warranty instead of BSI.
3. You are spending a lot of cash. Please do get color combo of your choice. In any event I would say avoid the demo car.
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