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Buy a car
Either a Merc or BMW

Question : I AM Planning to buy either a BMW 5 Series (2007/2008) or a Mecedes-Benz E-Class 220 (2007/2008).

Which would you recommend and why ?

I have been told that BMW is a driver's car while Merc is a passenger's car.

Which has better resale value, better mileage, after sales service, etc ?

Answer : The differences between these two cars are not a lot.

All it comes down to is personal taste. It's a subjective point of view.

Branding between these cars is very potent. These two makers have created strong brand perceptions, for example, the BMW brand is perceived as more edgy, performance-oriented, modern, young; Mercedes-Benz on the other hand positions itself to represent values such as comfort, elegance, a classy car for businessmen.

This is what they want you to think and feel.

Resale value: The difference in depreciation between the two cars is marginal.

Bear in mind, a new Mercedes prices itself higher. In simpler terms, a three-year-old Mercedes might depreciate about RM180,000 from new, and a BMW 5 Series will absorb roughly the same amount of depreciation in the same amount of years.

However, if we take the class range up a notch, a 10-year-old BMW 7 Series has a higher price compared with a Mercedes S-Class. Then again, that is a different class we're talking about and it may nto be similar situation with the 5 Series and E-Class.

Used car buyers are younger and will be looking for a car that they want to be identified with. They look for that in a BMW.

Also to note, BMW ahs improved in terms of secondhand sales as more spare parts have been made available and the number of service centers has increased in the past five years. This means used BMWs are starting to catch up with the Mercedes-Benz in terms of spare parts.

After sales service is, surprise, surprise, as good as it gets. Both offer tremendous after sales service.

One question you may like to ask yourself is the comfort of being in the driver's eat and the handling of the car. These may require you to actually sit in the car and/or test drive the car. They both respond slightly differently and you get a lighter feel in the Mercedes' steering. However, the BMW is not exactly heavy in comparison, but you do get a sturdier and firmer feel which goes well with a car of that status.

At the end of the day, you're buying a reliable car and they are both top selling models in the prestige range.

It is a very hard question to answer -- the choice is really yours to make. It's like ordering in a Chinese restaurant: You think you're satisfied with your order, until the next table comes along and orders something else.


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