Need a car with rear seat comfort & driving pleasure within Rs. 70 lakh

I have to be honest and admit that snob value means something to me and that after Audi and Mercedes, a BMW closes the loop.

BHPian MZee recently shared this with other enthusiasts.


I am a new member and this is my first post.

I have been 27 years in Dubai and Muscat and on attaining senior citizenship am returning back to India and to retire in Kochi by October this year.

I seek advice on buying a car . My previous cars have been Camry,Toyota Prado, Audi Q5 and Mercedes E300 in that order . I have always self driven but at least the first few months till I get a licence and the nerve to drive in India , will have to be chauffeur driven.

My requirement:

I am looking for a sedan in the 40-70 OTR lakhs bracket. I am looking for a rear seat comfort car that is easy to get in and out of for my large frame and creaky bones . I also in time look forward to taking the wheel myself and I do enjoy driving and normally explore the gadgetry the car has to offer.

My shortlist are the following usual suspects:

Skoda Superb:

I am impressed by the looks and all reviews seem so positive ! It definitely offers good value for money and has more features than some more expensive premium brands. I worry though that it is too large for city traffic and that it is a downgrade from the E300 that I drive currently. I am not sure of the dealer capability .

Volvo S60:

I am blown by how good it looks and to me it is a car to rival the 3 Germans . I love the fact that it is so tech laden with safety such a priority . And in a small town intrusive metro like Kochi it would attract less attention than the Big 3 even though I am aware that Kerala is awash with luxury cars. But the low seats at the rear with poor ingress / egress is a major concern. Also the dealer network is sparse.

BMW 330 LI:

I have to be honest and admit that snob value means something to me and that after Audi and Mercedes, a BMW closes the loop. In the autumn years of my life it would be nice to be in a luxurious car . However the car is without some of the features that cars at lower price offers like the ventilated seats and window blinds.

I would like to be convinced that the 330 LI is the obvious choice. But I cannot argue logically to myself that for city traffic, the driving pleasure that would be at least initially the chauffeur’s, and for the badge, I should pay about Rs. 25 L extra over a Superb . As my wife points out, that difference could finance a second car or a couple of overseas vacations traveling by business class though she leaves the final decision to me as she does not drive.

I would normally keep a car for the length of its extended warranty period .

Any thoughts, friends ? Also , would you advice that I wait for the facelift of these cars that are expected in the next 6 months ?

Here’s what BHPian AJ56 had  to say on the matter:

Get the E200. It is 76 on road so a slight stretch in the budget but for your requirements of comfort and rear seat riding it is the best option in the budget. The other cars on the list will fall short when compared directly with the E in these areas. If you prefer a more engaging drive then look at the 530i M Sport.

Another great option is the Lexus ES, same price roughly, the most reliable long term car you can buy in the class.

Here’s what BHPian Dippy had to say on the matter:

The 330LI is a nice option in my opinion. The long wheelbase would give you comfort in the back seat and it will be a hoot to drive when you want to get behind the wheel.

Since you are looking at the Superb, I would advise you to look at the Camry Hybrid as well. The model is fresh and promises you fuss free years of ownership. I don’t need to tell you that since you have owned Toyotas in the Gulf.

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

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