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Old 07-08-2019, 09:14 AM   #1
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Time to move from Boxster - Opinions appreciated

My 2001 Boxster has been just awesome. It's only left me stranded twice in the past 11 years. It's been so easy to work on. I could do a set of brakes in less than 30 minutes with a floor jack which I think is pretty good for someone who's nearly 60 years old. The cost of repairs has been very reasonable. Now I think it's probably time to move on to something else. Since I know there are "car" people here, I'm looking for some direction about what to get next.

Background
I'm three years out from retiring and won't be able to afford to get a new car after I retire on my teacher's pension so I need to purchase something soon. I live in San Diego where I can drive top down nearly 85% of the year so I'd like to get another convertible under 30,000 miles and under $30k. I'm looking for something that my wife can drive, too, and while she can drive stick, she'd prefer to have an automatic. She's not a fan of something as small as a 986.

Knowing that my funds are a bit limited, that I like to work on my own cars, and that I'm looking for a convertible car that will last another 15+ years like my Boxster, do any of these choices sound good? I'm not looking to buy a brand new car, just a late model car with low mileage.

1. Audi A5
2. BMW 228i
3. BMW 428i

Do you have a different suggestion? Thanks in advance for any help.

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Old 07-08-2019, 10:05 AM   #2
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I've never owned a BMW, but am sure they are great vehicles. I currently own an Audi A4. I perform most all my own maintenance on the Audi: Oil/filter changes, fuel filter, air filter, spark plugs, brake pads, flushed brake fluid, replaced coils, etc. I purchased new in 2006 and has 144,000 miles with no issues. I did get factory to replace timing belt based on manual recommendations. I get 26 - 29 Mpg average. It has a turbo and no issues. I have never missed an oil change (100% synthetic) every 5K miles. It's great for the snow here in Colorado. I would consider getting another one, but this one is like new interior/exterior and runs like new.
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:51 AM   #3
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2009 or 2010 base Boxster with PDK.
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Old 07-08-2019, 11:27 AM   #4
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2009 or 2010 base Boxster with PDK.
While I'd love to get another Boxster, I need to consider something bigger even if the back seat is just a glorified shelf.
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Old 07-08-2019, 01:41 PM   #5
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A5

I have an A5, and will be unloading it.
It's a good driving car, and very solid, but I consider it a time bomb with a lit fuse.
The direct injection means at some point, it will need an intake cleaning. Then there's the turbo. I understand many cars have them now, but when and if they go, there's another chunk of money.
Nothing will drive like your Porsche, and I have an older BMW 540i which I love. But if you think anything else is going to feel as good, some disappointment lurks around the corner--literally.
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Old 07-09-2019, 09:51 AM   #6
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I seriously suggest the new generation Mazda MX-5 aka the Miata.

I had a 2016 MX-5 C/S for a while, and I absolutely loved that car. It has a manual top, but it is absolutely effortless to operate the top. The car has good power, is fuel efficient if you baby it, and will tear through the canyons like it is on rails. If you can swing it I had the club sport, big breaks, bigger sways, Bilstiens on all corners. Sadly I sold it for a more commuter friendly car (something with an automatic )

If it wasn't for the fact that I always wanted a Porsche at some point in my life, I would have purchased the newer MX-5

edit: just realized you need something with the possibility of a rear shelf.... My vote would be BMW, had an E46 325CiC (convertible) The car was heavy in the corners, but never hinted that it was about to loose grip. Decent power, and easy to work on. Again another great car of my past. (bought it on the cheap from the dealership I worked at, fixed some issues, and flipped it for profit a year later).

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Old 07-09-2019, 10:09 AM   #7
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While I'd love to get another Boxster, I need to consider something bigger even if the back seat is just a glorified shelf.
I would try to stay with a Boxster, albeit a newer gen. But if you had to have a 'shelf' or backseat of some kind, a 911 would be a good option. Or a quick online check of the Macan S's in my area has them starting right at the 30K amount.
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Old 07-09-2019, 11:02 AM   #8
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In years of BMW ownership, I would not recommend a BMW if the plan is to own one for the next 15+ years. If you are set in getting a BMW, lease one for the first while, and then buy out the vehicle if you find that you enjoy them enough.

I lost patience working on my BMW and having to send it to the shop for repairs when I needed the car the most. The worst things would happen, and when my cooling system exploded without warning, it was the last straw for me and I got rid of it. I'm happy to have moved away from BMW, as much as I enjoy their driving dynamics. But to own one, was a royal pain in the ass. Best of luck.
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Old 07-09-2019, 12:52 PM   #9
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My 2 cents ......... based on internet gossip/forums it seems a lot of folks say Audi and BMW are great cars to own while under warranty , out of warranty not so much . No personal experience . I know this suggestion will pi$$ off some folks but go rent a newer Mustang convertible and see how you like it . Good power , decent handling , good fuel mileage , solid automatic transmission and rear seats . Dirt cheap to maintain compared to Euro makes .

Might also consider a Nissan 370Z convertible . Neither of these cars or many others are not going to handle like a Boxster , a Boxster is a slot car on rails for handling . But that is just one aspect of the driving experience . Good luck with your decision .
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Old 07-09-2019, 03:20 PM   #10
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BMW and Audi are pretty sweet for 3 years, then all the parts start falling off as you leave your driveway. Fun to drive, much less reliable than Porsche.

With your need for longevity, price point, and soft top I'd say Lexus IS Convertible. Still fun to drive and dead nuts reliable, a decent back seat, and looks sorta BMWish if you take your glasses off.

My daughter had a 2014 IS hardtop and it was a great car.

Here is one:
https://www.carfax.com/vehicle/JTHFF2C25C2525984

Or an older SC430:
https://www.carfax.com/vehicle/JTHFN45Y399020526
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Old 07-09-2019, 03:32 PM   #11
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I own a 2009 Mercedes CLK convertible in addition to two Boxsters. The CLK 350 fits your bill exactly. It has rear seats that are great for kids and OK for adults. A trunk that hods a decent amount of luggage if you keep the top up and it has been incredibly reliable.
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Old 07-09-2019, 03:35 PM   #12
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I'm curious why the e46 m3 is not on your short list?
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Old 07-09-2019, 06:36 PM   #13
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I own a 2009 Mercedes CLK convertible in addition to two Boxsters. The CLK 350 fits your bill exactly. It has rear seats that are great for kids and OK for adults. A trunk that hods a decent amount of luggage if you keep the top up and it has been incredibly reliable.
I’m using a 2005 Mercedes C230 on the days the Boxster doesn’t work for me. A CLK convertible would be a great compromise vehicle if you want just one car.

If you buy a car with sports suspension the handling is enjoyable. I have a 6-speed manual in my C230. Unfortunately, Mercedes stopped offering manuals in the U.S sedans after the 2009 model year. I think they stopped offering them in the coupes earlier than 2009. So if you don’t want an automatic, this may not work for you.

I have an older car than Anker’s and I bought it used. I wouldn’t call it “incredibly reliable,” but if you can do your own maintenance and minor repairs it won’t put a huge dent in your wallet. One plus is that depreciation on the cars is significant and used cars are available at attractive prices.

I enjoyed “reviving” mine after I bought it. You can read about it here: https://mbworld.org/forums/c-class-w203/680651-2005-c230-revival.html
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Old 07-09-2019, 06:38 PM   #14
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How about....

...Infinity G37 retractable hardtop?


https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fulk%2Fitm%2F37 2673053299
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Old 07-09-2019, 08:02 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by husker boxster View Post
2009 or 2010 base Boxster with PDK.
I was thinking a 2013 to 2016 Boxster... They are a larger car than the 986.
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Old 07-10-2019, 08:31 AM   #16
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Be certain not to overlook the Alfa Romeo Giulia line.

Lots of different models and options, depending upon your interests and budget. And compared to their more traditional German model competitors which the OP has already noted, they are a true bargain.

I have had mine for some time now, and it is a joy.

I would be happy to answer any questions that you might have.
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Old 07-10-2019, 08:36 AM   #17
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Be certain not to overlook the Alfa Romeo Giulia line.

Lots of different models and options, depending upon your interests and budget. And compared to their more traditional German model competitors which the OP has already noted, they are a true bargain.

I have had mine for some time now, and it is a joy.

I would be happy to answer any questions that you might have.
I second this. And, if you're budget allows, the quadrifoglio is truly bad ass.

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Old 07-10-2019, 10:38 AM   #18
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As much as I love Alfa Romeo (I owned a few) I could not recommend them for reliability. I know a few guys at work who had the latest Giulia, and all have had catastrophic failures with less than 20,000 miles on the clock. The dealerships bought the cars back, and they have moved on to Lexus.

@ Dave80GTSi - I hope you are enjoying your Alfa, and that nothing goes wrong with it! know that I am in envy!
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Old 07-10-2019, 10:48 AM   #19
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I just purchased a 2016 Nissan 370Z Touring Sport 6speed with 3600KM. For handling it's just as good as any other car and is very fast.
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Old 07-10-2019, 12:31 PM   #20
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In years of BMW ownership, I would not recommend a BMW if the plan is to own one for the next 15+ years.
I agree. BMW is garbage after about 6 years. The worst car I ever owned was a 3 series. They are going after a segment that would never own a car that is more than 5 years old, or after the 3 year lease ends, so nothing is built to last longer than that.

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