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Resale Value?

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How great is the resale (also known as trade-in?) value of a 2007 IS350? I'm wondering whether to buy a 2007 IS350 or 2007 335i (BMW 3-series coupe). Here are current pros and cons for each vehicle so far (I have test driven both):

IS350 Pros:

- beautiful exterior front design

- sporty exterior rear design

- overall luxury look and aura

- great power

- exquisite interior

- beautifully-crafted dash and center console

- price over BMW

- Lexus' red is gorgeous (my car would be this color)

- Lexus' service and reliability (from my and my family's experiences with Toyotas and Lexuses bought at Longo Lexus)

IS350 Cons:

- has been out 2 years now

- rear seating space (repeated so many times now.. hehe)

- doesn't have some technological advancements that the 335i has

335i Pros:

- aggressive-looking exterior front design

- very powerful engine

- impressive handling and road feel

- iDrive system (i prefer it a little more than Lexus' nav, although Lexus' nav is great)

- larger rear seating space (i would be carrying 2-3 other passengers from time to time each week)

- BMW name (more respected than Lexus)

335i Cons:

- interior and dash is ummm... ack!

- rear exterior design is "so-so" with me

- reliability questionable (I have never bought a BMW so I don't feel very confident on this issue)

What would really seal the deal with me getting an IS350 over the 335i is the typical trade-in value. I know that in about 2-3 years when Lexus should release their next generation IS (if they follow the same timeline as they did with the IS300 to ISx50), I will be wanting the next generation. I'm debating if I should just get this vehicle and then trade this in when the next generation IS comes out or get the 335i and be with it for about 5-6 years. This is of big concern to me because I'm the kind of person who likes having the most up to date things (I use Ebay a LOT to sell my older items, which has never disappointed me). I really do like the Lexus a little more than the BMW but I know that I can be with the BMW longer and it still be the current generation 3-series coupe. Gah... I'm so materialistic that I should have the label tattooed on my forehead... sorry If I annoy anyone... Anyways, I would greatly appreciate all the help I can get in this really difficult decision. Thank you for your time.

- Bryan

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If I were you I would check out kelly blue book for values. But my advise would be pick the one you like the best, why would you want to drive a car for the next 3-5 years that you did not like as well because you were worried about what might happen years from now.

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Honestly, if you KNOW you're going to trade it in 3 years, you probably should lease.

The BMW is going to have slightly better resale, even more attractive on a lease BMW offers free scheduled maintenance for 4 years 50k miles.

The BMW name is alluring, I know. But from your list it seems to me like the IS has a whole lot more pros, you like the interior a lot better, you like the styling better. I'd look at a 3 year lease on the IS350.

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There is a tool on cars.com which will help you determine the resale value of both vehicles - cars.com link

Doing a quick check, I don't think that there is much difference, percentage wise, in resale value between the two vehicles. Of course the BMW will have a higher value at trade-in time, mainly because the initial cost is higher. My thinking is that you should weigh your pros and cons and make the decision based on them, setting aside resale value. Why would you want to purchase a car you would be less happy with just because you can get more for it several years down the road? Even though you'd have a fine vehicle, you would regret your decision. Take it from me. In 2005 I bought a RX 330. Very luxurious and reliable, but I never felt completely comfortable or satisfied with it, although I couldn't figure out why. It wasn't until a friend pointed out "Dude, you're driving a soccer mom's car" that I realized that, as nice as the RX was, the driving experience was "blah" and the car just wasn't a good fit for my personality. Shortly thereafter I traded it in for an IS and I absolutely love it. From the minute I test drove it the car just spoke to me. Driving is actually fun again.

Can't really say I know that much about the BMW; it's a little out of my price range. But in your case, if I were you I'd test drive both vehicles again and ask myself what vehicle "connects" better with my personality and driving style. I'm sure both are great cars but when you give it careful consideration you'll just know which one is right for you...

BTW, do you really think the BMW name is more respected than Lexus? I would kind of rate them as equals, with the BMW seen as more performance-oriented, while the Lexus is more luxury-oriented.

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I will definitely test out both vehicles again (if I can find an available 335i to test drive) and make a final decision. I personally always looked at BMW as more respected than Lexus, but that's just me. I understand your point of view and I haven't really thought of it that way.

I guess putting "- interior and dash is umm... ack!" is a little harsh when describing the 335i interior heh. I can definitely live with it. It's just that it isn't as fit and finished as the IS's interior.

Thank you all for your input.

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