Car Review – BMW 335i Convertible (1)

August 29, 2008

Part (1) of my review of the BMW 335i hard-top convertible:

Disclosure – I liked this car so much, that after test-driving over 50 cars from December – March, I bought one myself. I wanted a build that wasn’t commonly available, so had to order one from Germany… which gave me the chance to drive a lot more cars before mine arrived.

So this part of the review is the summary. And the summary is…. its AWESOME!! No ifs, ands or buts. This car is the bomb! To misappropriate a quote from Jeremy Clarkson – its like a sharp Armani suit, but one you can put on all day every day.

Want to spend a very pleasant 10 – 20 minutes? Try building your own 335i Convertible!


Car buying tip – 1 (BMWs)

August 29, 2008

Are you looking to buy, or thinking of buying a BMW in a year or so? If so, there’s a small secret; join the BMW Car Club of America; members with over a year’s standing get a nice discount that can range between $200 – $1,500 per forums, depending on the car you bought, of course.

But definitely try negotiating for a discount yourself first, before pulling out this card.


Auto Review – Porsche Panamera!!

August 28, 2008

I love spy shots, spy videos, spy anything for new upcoming cars.  The Porsche Panamera has been a badly kept secret for a while; this uber German car, coming out in 2009, has been photographed and video taped quite a bit.

After the jump, we have 2-minute video footage of the Porsche Panamera, that shows off all the car’s lines, as well as some really nice photos.  I have to say, I’m still reserving my opinion on the car – I can’t quite figure out what to make of its shape, and the fact that Porsche is now making…. gasp… sedans!  But if I had the chance.. yes, I would indeed want to drive it on the autobahn.

Hope its worth it, to have Aston Martin and Porsche diving into the 4-door sedan market.

Porsche Panamera spy video

Porsche Panamera

Porsche Panamera  Porsche Panamera


Car Review – New Jaguar XF

August 28, 2008

I haven’t driven the new Jaguar XF yet.  I wasn’t even paying attention to it coming out, until I saw one driving next to me on Hillsdale blvd in San Mateo/ Foster City.  I haven’t reacted to a 4-door sedan like this in quite a while – it was quite the stunner. 

Will the XF bring back Jaguar?  Lets hope so.

Until I have test-driven it, here are some photos. 

What an interior!

On the showroom floor

I love that grill

The side panels and lines remind one of the XKR

With pretty pretty lighting

The back here looks like it was designed by Lexus.  To older tastes… but thats what Jaguar was always good at, eh

And finally, a shot of the XF concept.  Ooh, can I have one!


5th Gear Supercar experiment – head turners

August 28, 2008

The 5th Gear guys put up a pretty interesting social experiment.  They took three supercars and parked them on a busy street for 10 minutes, then counted how many people stopped and stared:

  • McLaren Mercedes SLR  Three Hundred Thousand Pounds!!
  • Porsche Carrera GT Three Hundred Thousand Pounds!!
  • Lamborghini LP640  Two Hundred Thousand Pounds!!

So who won?  The counts were:

  • McLaren Mercedes SLR  – 19
  • Porsche Carrera GT – 78
  • Lamborghini LP640 – 84 people counted, numerous more just standing around and not moving

So I guess I’m buying the LP640;  If I’m spending that much dough, I do want folks to envy me. 

5th Gear Supercar experiment


Saturday: 600 Miles to Solvang

August 28, 2008

After a long week light on sleep, Saturday brought the chance to celebrate with friends… and take my car for its first long-distance drive.

Aileen, a good friend from my days at LifeScan, got married to Neil. The wedding was in Solvang, with the ceremony at the old mission, and the party afterwards at the Crossroads Estate across from the Firestone winery.
The wedding was fun, I got to meet a lot of old friends. The temperature made it interesting – it was 116 degrees!!! I met a 95 year old man, who had moved to Solvang after retiring 44 years ago – he mentioned it was the hottest day in his memory.

Since I was running late, I drove on 101 instead of highway 1. The drive was amazing; I did however drive all the way with the top down, so ended up getting nicely sunburned.

Map of Solvang
Map of Solvang

I found out another thing – when the temperature climbs above 100 degrees, any speed below 80 mph in a convertible means you sweat continuously.

I left Solvang around 9:30 pm. Since I didn’t want to drive while tired, I again had to take 101. (Highway 1 takes an extra 1.5 – 2 hours). Having a new car has made me more careful – I even stopped at a strip mall after King City to take a nap. It wasn’t the smartest idea; I had planned on napping for 30 minutes, then buying a coke from McD’s and driving home. When I went to sleep, the strip mall was full and quite busy. I woke 40 minutes later, parked under the only street lamp that was still lighted, and with the entire area dark and deserted. I have to admit – I was awake and alert very fast.

Finally got home at 2:15 am. A long drive, and a very enjoyable one. I would recommend you all have a lot of friends, and buy a BMW 335i hard-top convertible. Then convince those friends to get married in Solvang. This gives you the setting for a perfect Saturday!