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clarkma5
I was bored, so I looked at fast luxo-sport 4-to-5 seaters in the $50k range and I picked these five. Now I can't narrow it down anymore. Which would you pick for your 1-car garage?

Alphabetical order = price order as well

Acura TL SH-AWD: 305 HP AWD with a 6-speed manual; loaded with all the toys for only $45k, it's the steal of this group. While "Acura TL" is hardly a by-word for performance in enthusiast circles, this latest SH-AWD manual clocks in with a 0-60 in the mid 5s, competitive dynamics, a nice interior (in terms of design, materials, and space), and a unique exterior (personally I've grown to like it a lot...)



Audi S4 Sedan: well-equipped for the low $50k range with 333 supercharged horsepower from its V6, AWD (with available sport rear diff, a must-have IMO) and a choice between a 6-speed or a best-in-the-biz dual-clutch, the S4 sets a new dynamic standard for non-RS Audis and also looks great inside and out. Smaller than the Acura or Cadillac but still ample for four real people (and tied with the BMW for lightest of the group), the Audi could be the best balance of everyday livability and performance. But do you WANT one?



Audi S5 Coupe: trading a couple MPG, 2 doors, some interior room, and a few extra grand gets you Audi's wonderful 4.2 liter V8 in an even prettier body than the S4's, while retaining the rest of the S4's goodness. The only 2-door here means it's not as practical, but you're a loner masculine car enthusiast, right? Who needs friends or cargo capacity!



BMW M3 Sedan: Only jerks drive BMWs. Sadly, BMW makes some really awesome cars sometimes, and the M3 is one of them. What is a car guy to do? 414 HP with 8000 revs on tap, tied with the S4 for lightest car here and also of reasonably trim exterior dimensions, the M3 is damned tempting. Damned tempting...but it's easily pushing into the $60k+ range with options.



Cadillac CTS-V Wagon: 556 HP. You need it. It sounds like thunder and looks like sex, even (especially?) in wagon form, the most practical of shapes! Price is a bear, though...if you get the Recaros (and let's face it, you have to), you're past the $65k mark. But it is a very special thing indeed, is it not?

moe
1-series M tongue.gif

Money-no-object (and lets face it, it's never an issue on a forum), I'd go with the CTS-V.
Bjorn
I would desperately want the M3, might ponder the CTS-V, but at the end of the day, where I live AWD is a must four months a year. I think I would be quite happy with the S4.

Acura is tempting too, but in Canada (not sure about in the US) Acuras are driven by punk kids or or old balding white guys who couldn't give a shit about cars.
DB9
I would also go with the CTS-V Wagon if money wasn't an object as it does have the most practical shape.

2nd place is a huge tossup between the rest. I like all of them, but it would probably be between the S4 or M3. From there, I'd have to think about it more.
clarkma5
I made this poll because I couldn't choose. I still can't. Interesting to see that the S4 and the CTS-V are running away with it.
MustangAficionado
I wouldn't call the 4.2 wonderful for the S5. I've driven two 4.2 platforms and it doesnt feel like a performance powerplant. Solid, smoothe, and peppy but I wouldn't be seeking it out. I still believe the S5 isn't really what it's supposed to be until they put that new powerplant in.
Razor
This is so hard. I'd take them all save the M3.
clarkma5
I love the 4.2. Harshness-wise it doesn't care if it's idling or at 7000 RPM, sounds great throughout the rev range, torque everywhere, good power. I think it's a great fit for a personal-sized GT coupe like the S5.
dukenukem
My two favorite 4 door power sedans are
1. CTS-V
2. Mercedes C63 AMG

In this case my vote goes to the CTS-V
clarkma5
The availabilty of a 6-speed manual was an implied requirement for me in this poll so the Mercedes didn't make the list. I did ponder the Panamera with its PDK, but even the base no-options V6 is $75k so that was right out.
MustangAficionado
QUOTE(clarkma5 @ Jan 8 2011, 02:12 PM) *
I love the 4.2. Harshness-wise it doesn't care if it's idling or at 7000 RPM, sounds great throughout the rev range, torque everywhere, good power. I think it's a great fit for a personal-sized GT coupe like the S5.

It would if its size reflected its weight. For a 3900lb car, it doesn't feel like an "S" car.
clarkma5
Well, says the guy who drives supercharged semi-racing Mustangs. I'm not gonna sneeze at anything that offers up 0-60s in the low 5s and pulls 13 second quarters, as long as it's not claiming to be a supercar, which the S5 has never begun to try to. Like I said, it's a grand touring coupe, and just about the cheapest car on the US market that could be labelled that way. It's also right in the thick of the cars it's being compared to here...it's 3rd of 5 for price and 3rd of 5 for straight-line performance. Sounds fine to me.
TW0R
I would say m3, but this is the first time I have seen a ctsv wagon and I gotta pick my jaw up off the floor!
MustangAficionado
Nah, I just crash them Raspberry.gif
It's also the only coupe. And for a coupe, especially when Audi introduced the 5 series, I guess I expected less (weight) and more (new powerplant) in the same breath.
clarkma5
Well it was slated to get the supercharged V6 along with the S4 and the S5 Cabriolet, which offers both less weight and more new powerplant, but the V8 was kept by popular demand. All of these cars are in the 3700 to 4300 pound range, which all sound pretty heavy to me, but that's the way the car market is right now...
OHirtenfelder
The S4 looked really tempting. I've driven both the S4 and the S5 and the M3, and so when the next car down the list popped up, I wasn't all that moved. The S5 does feel a lot more like a GT than an out and out sports car. The M3 has to be the sharpest of the lot, but to be honest there is still that huge stigma that M3 drivers are cunts, and let's be quite honest, most of the time they are.
Also, money no object...CTS-V wagon....it's a wagon. And so sexy.
On balance between them all money/looks/performance/'image', it would have to be the S4 with the 6 speed manual!
clarkma5
I also finally went for the S4...6-speed, 18" wheels, sport rear diff and B&O sound for me (sprint blue over black alcantara mmmm). The CTS-V Wagon makes my jaw drop, but 556 HP is overkill, 4300 pounds is fat, and $65k is a lot of money. The M3 is also great but it's also pretty pricey and has that unfortunate stigma, plus I don't love BMW interiors. The Acura's a good car but the Audi's worth a few extra grand to me and the S5 seems redundant when the S4 costs less.

I'd happily take any of them though!
MustangAficionado
QUOTE(clarkma5 @ Jan 8 2011, 08:23 PM) *
I also finally went for the S4...6-speed, 18" wheels, sport rear diff and B&O sound for me (sprint blue over black alcantara mmmm). The CTS-V Wagon makes my jaw drop, but 556 HP is overkill, 4300 pounds is fat, and $65k is a lot of money. The M3 is also great but it's also pretty pricey and has that unfortunate stigma, plus I don't love BMW interiors. The Acura's a good car but the Audi's worth a few extra grand to me and the S5 seems redundant when the S4 costs less.

I'd happily take any of them though!

I also went with S4 from the get-go, for many of the same reasons. I dated a girl with a '09 A4 and prolly dated her a little longer than I would have otherwise because I got to drive, lol. I agree about the interiors.
dukenukem
QUOTE(MustangAficionado @ Jan 9 2011, 12:50 AM) *
I also went with S4 from the get-go, for many of the same reasons. I dated a girl with a '09 A4 and prolly dated her a little longer than I would have otherwise because I got to drive, lol. I agree about the interiors.

HAI GUYS I WAS DATING THIS ONE CHICK THIS ONE TIME!!!!








Raspberry.gif
clarkma5
But it's very important to realize that she had an A4.

I've never dated anyone who owned a nice car, come to think of it. A brief interlude with someone who had an '08 TSX 6-speed...that was a pretty nice car. But we weren't really dating.
MustangAficionado
Thought it was relevant :shrug:
She only drove a nice car cuz she was a daddy's girl.
caster
Like many others, I'm torn between the S4, S5, and CTS-V. My only problem with the S5 is the engine, I feel like the car would be 10x better if was using the 3.0 V6 supercharged engine that the S4 has (the S5 cabriolet has it, I still don't understand why the S5 coupe hasn't got it). I have an A4 and love it and I imagine that having an S4 would only be better, so I'm partial to the S4, but the CTS-V Wagon is not only unique, but its also the fastest of the bunch. The wagon part, as cool as it is kind of throws me off a bit, but then I think if it was a sedan, I'd choose it no brainer, so I'd definitely have to go for the CTS-V Wagon as first and the S4 as second (only behind by a slight margin).
Aircooled
I absolutely hate the blade grill acuras are wearing now and otherwise it just doesn't look as good as the rest. The CTS is definitely an awesome car but to be honest I just don't won't a wagon, yet alone a 550 hp wagon. Audi's do have nicer interiors than BMWs, and living in the NE AWD would be the smarter choice, but Audis lack that hard edge that the BMW has that sets it apart as a true enthusiast's car. Stigma be damned, if I want a car that carves corners like a scalpel and has a V8 that screams at 8300 rpm to hell with everyone else and their opinions, I'll take the M3 please.
shandyman5
M3...'nuff said.
SwissWhiskey
M5, but on this list M3. CTS-V wagon a close second. M3 because I want the ass to hang out at redline... and because I'm a fanboy.
clarkma5
An M5 is way way more expensive than any of these cars, in the US at least.
Razor
Stuck between S5 and CTS-V.
caster
Damn, M3 caught up, when I voted it was just between the S4 and CTS-V, but the M3 is right there. Rightfully so though, the M3 is an amazing car, one of the only cars BMW hasn't managed to screw up yet.
350Z
THIS:

Audi S4 Sedan: well-equipped for the low $50k range with 333 supercharged horsepower from its V6, AWD (with available sport rear diff, a must-have IMO) and a choice between a 6-speed or a best-in-the-biz dual-clutch, the S4 sets a new dynamic standard for non-RS Audis and also looks great inside and out. Smaller than the Acura or Cadillac but still ample for four real people (and tied with the BMW for lightest of the group), the Audi could be the best balance of everyday livability and performance. But do you WANT one?



plus this

More power


MustangAficionado
They do not know how to tie a car down apparently
dukenukem

QUOTE(MustangAficionado @ Jan 15 2011, 11:10 AM) *
They do not know how to tie a car down apparently

This.
moe
Come to think of it, I think I'd rather have the S5. I'll change my vote.
goota
the most expenise one, sell it, buy a bunch of older cars and make them awesome.

but if i had to choose of those 5 with a gun to my head it'd be the S5.
fiber optic
CTS-V Wagon
Aircooled
Wow the Acura got shit on



edit: Post #1600, a well known aircooled VW engine size
fiber optic
QUOTE(Aircooled @ Jan 16 2011, 06:42 PM) *
edit: Post #1600, a well known aircooled VW engine size


Which is technically 1585cc
Mr b00st
Definetely the CTS-V for me. Although of the three body styles I'd go for the sedan; I think it's the best looking.

I'd rather have a 1M than an M3, personally, and I think they're going to start around 47 so they're in this category even though the rear three seats would be tight - I don't carry a lot of people in the backseat anyway.

How about a G8 GXP? Oh I forgot, GM killed them instead of Buick.
Razor
QUOTE(Mr b00st @ Jan 23 2011, 12:23 AM) *
How about a G8 GXP? Oh I forgot, GM killed them instead of Buick.


Tough. Pontiac sold like shit, Buick sells like hotcakes in China.
shandyman5
QUOTE(Razor @ Jan 23 2011, 12:26 AM) *
Tough. Pontiac sold like shit, Buick sells like hotcakes in China.


This, except for the "tough". The G8, Solstice were pretty cool cars, and even the G6 was appealing to some in it's own unique way. They should have killed Hummer & Saturn well before they axed Buick.
DB9
^You mean pontiac?
Razor
QUOTE(shandyman5 @ Jan 23 2011, 10:01 AM) *
This, except for the "tough". The G8, Solstice were pretty cool cars, and even the G6 was appealing to some in it's own unique way. They should have killed Hummer & Saturn well before they axed Buick.


Yeah, although the thing is, I liked what they started doing with Saturn towards the end of its life: they were using is as the direct "Europe GM" port, with cars like the Astra. And yes, I didn't give credit where it was due: the Solstice/Sky was an awesome roadster, and the G8 was pretty cool, save for the fact that anything but the G8 GXP you were buying SOLELY for performance because the GT and lower models offered nothing but. The interior in the G8 GT made me want to puke when I test drove it, as did that god-awful transmission.
shandyman5
QUOTE(DB9 @ Jan 23 2011, 01:48 PM) *
^You mean pontiac?


Woops, yup.
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