OT: BMW X1 vs. Subaru Forester 2.0XT

Anyone have one of these two? Wife likes Subie but I am little hesitant on CVT. Any comments? I am comparing two top of line models.
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On 10/14/2015 7:07 PM, Tony Hwang wrote:

We found the Subaru Outback and Forester both "suffered" from an overly wide "transmission hump" between the front seats.
I rode shotgun when SWMBO test drove it so was able to notice it.
Seat yourself in the passenger seat, your back *square* against the seat back (i.e., like you are intended to sit). Look at the position of your left (inbound) foot. Instead of being inline with your knee which should be inline with your hip and all "normal" to the seat back, you will find that the "hump" has forced it over to the right several inches. I.e., your lower body ends up twisted in the seat to accommodate this placement.
[Inspecting the position of the inner seat edge and outer hump extents should make this clear to you AFTER you've experienced it.]
I loved the oil filter's location "up top"! But, the engine seemed a bit underpowered and noisey when you punched it.
We didn't like any of the beemers so can't help you there...
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Don Y wrote:

Hmmm, Wife is slim in size. Subie has more Hp/torque than X1 by 10 Hp. She's going to test drive Subie first and go across street to try X1. Going to be her car so she will decide. I really wanted to get her like Acura RDX but she did not like it all. She does not like my MDX either. For some reason she complains seat is not comfy. She better pick one of two. I hate car shopping. The noise could be due to the nature of CVT. Thanks for pointing out about the seat issue.
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On 10/14/2015 9:22 PM, Tony Hwang wrote:

We don't drive much so "performance" wasn't a real issue.
SWMBO had her mind set on the Outback before we started shopping. Forester was first test drive. She wasn't very impressed (as the driver). I was very uncomfortable (as pasenger) -- but didn't yet understand the reason.
Came back another day to test drive the Outback and I was *just* as uncomfortable. OK, there's a pattern here! Which is what drove me to more critically examine my "seated posture" (I'm 6 ft, average weight, nothing "unusual" to stress the ergonomics of the car!)

We ended up with a '16 RDX. The MDX was too big for her. (I'm surprised she even considered *any* SUV's for that matter!)
RDX was second or third car we'd looked at and initially dismissed it as too big (lumped it together with our impressions of the larger MDX). Also not fond of leather interior (too hot, here) and silly moonroof. But, what we *both* noticed in that first look at the RDX was how comfortable the seats (driver AND passenger) were! I.e., we hadn't even considered the feel of the seats as a selection criteria at that point!
Like many women, SWMBO likes seat *high* (so they can see what's passing under the bumper as they drive??). I, OTOH, want a seat down on the floor boards and "all the way BACK". Given that we may each end up in the driver *or* passenger seats, the fact that the RDX offered virtually identical capabilities in both positions was a win (no power lumbar on the passenger side -- big deal!)
We looked at a *lot* of vehicles over the course of several months. This caused us to revise our initial "want list" to include some features that we hadn't initially considered: - power liftgate as that heavy door can be a problem for her as she gets older - blind spot and cross traffic monitors as "looking over shoulder" seems to be a problem that plagues older people - likewise for the backup camera - spare tire *inside* the vehicle (I'm not keen on crawling UNDER a vehicle to retrieve the spare; nor the "drive flat" tires!) Vehicles that didn't offer this set of features were eliminated.
We also were careful to consider the length of the vehicle; some were so long that the liftgate wouldn't be operable inside the garage (without leaving the garage door open or moving the freezer chest that we have in the garage). This was usually an easy choice as longer typically just meant "seating for 7" (instead of 5) -- we only need seating for *two*! :>
There were lots of little things that (on top of the seat comfort issue) biased us to the RDX. It seemed like the car had more well thought out features than many of the others. Often, "little things".
E.g., many cars will (optionally!) tilt the side mirrors downward when in reverse. But, it's usually a "configuration option". E.g., something you "set" and the car always does (e.g., the Volvo allowed you to specify *which* mirror(s) would tilt downward). On the RDX, the driver makes that choice on the fly: flip the mirror adjust switch (on left armrest) to the left AS IF you were going to use the 4-way joystick to adjust the LEFT mirror and the left mirror tips down when the car is in reverse. Likewise for the right mirror. Leave the switch in the center neutral position and the mirrors return to their normal positions.
Similarly, the statistics that the car maintains re: fuel economy are detailed enough without being overly detailed. What's my instantaneous fuel economy? What is my average fuel economy since I started the car? What was it the *last* time I started the car? What has it been since I last reset the trip odometer? etc. So, with a tiny bit of planning, you can get virtually all the data you might typically want without being inundated with all sorts of "extra detail".
E.g., I have trip odometer A set to autoreset at each fill-up. So, the average fuel economy since last trip odometer reset effectively gives me fuel economy per tankful. The B trip odometer lets me pick two arbitrary points in time to determine the average fuel efficiency (e.g., a long trip that consumes multiple tankfuls; or, just a stretch of "interesting" roadway).
There are lots of other "little things" like this that suggest some thought was placed in the design instead of just throwing features at it.
The biggest annoyance is that you can't "dump" your settings to a thumb drive! E.g., accidentally delete your points of interest and there's no easy way to restore them!
[Though, there is a hack that you can exploit: create the POI's on a thumbdrive on your PC. Then, *load* them from the thumbdrive. So, if the vehicle's data gets erased, you can always reload the POI's the same way!]
Of course, there are bugs in the technology. So far, most seem to be race-related. I've been trying to catalog the conditions that cause each to manifest but we've only put ~60 hours on the car (in 3 months) so haven't had many opportunities to "trip it up".
[By contrast, I was able to "hard crash" the infotainment system in one of the Nissan's without really trying! <shudder>]
We deliberately avoided the Acura-Watch (?) technology (forward facing camera?) as the implementation seems to have thermal problems (sit in the hot sun and the features that rely on that mechanism, will all throw errors and then shut down -- and you want me to PAY for this??)
[I watched a unit fail in exactly this way while seated in the driver's seat. The salesman was NOT surprised! <shudder>]
A head-scratcher is the *hole* that hides behind the rear license plate! Can't figure out why it *should* be there! :< Contraband??

As I said, we found the RDX to be the most comfortable. We also liked one of the Volvo's and one of the Nissan's. But, all things considered, the RDX was the clear winner. She'd also had ~20 years of good experiences with her previous Honda and the Acura before *that* so...

The CVT is an interesting idea. Not sure how reliable it will prove to be in the long run. I've seen similar technology employed in other machines with *BIG* synchronous motors (predating VFD's). But, in those cases, it was primarily a "set and forget" sort of function; not something that was actively manipulated!
Good luck in your search!
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Don Y wrote:>> Thanks for pointing out about the seat issue.

Too I don't understand why she does not like RDX(My choice). When son had Subie WRX I drove it a few times on the open road full throttle near our home. He moved to Bimmer M3 which is money pit. Expensive to maintain. Car like this should be leased. Daughter still drives Subie Impreza wagon. CVT has come a long way. Nissan had big problem with first CVT on Murano but they figured things out. Subie had CVT on the little Justy 30 years ago, I guess they think it is good enough now to mate it with Turbo engines.
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On 10/15/2015 8:54 AM, Tony Hwang wrote:

<shrug> If it's essentially going to be *her* car, then it should essentially be *her* choice. The seat comfort issue was important to us because we often ride together (shopping, etc.). And, the *passenger* seat then takes on special significance. E.g., she loved her little Honda -- but hated the passenger seat therein. Fine as she rarely sat in it!

We were "underimpressed" with the BMW's. Saw a larger mercedes that *I* would have been comfortable driving but way too large for SWMBO. Again, as it was intended to be *her* car, important that *she* like it.

No idea. I still prefer rear wheel drive and a big V8. Idea behind CVT is simple -- probably a lot simpler than an automatic! Just have no experience with them in practice (performance, reliability).
I'd be curious as to how well it digs down to lower "gears" when you stomp on it for acceleration -- along with the smarts that keep it *mechanically* from going *too* low at high speeds, etc.
But, at my age, I'm not keen on "tinkering" under the hood just for the sake of tinkering. More exciting ways to spend my time!
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On Wed, 14 Oct 2015 22:43:46 -0700, Don Y

A lot of good points. Highlights my irritation with a lot of car magazines. They fall in love with high performance vehicles that are great when you want to take a fast test drive and play race car driver but that don't really suit the needs of "life" on an everyday basis.
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On 10/15/2015 6:20 PM, Ashton Crusher wrote:

Car magazines are designed to sell car magazines! :>
Car salesmen are designed to sell cars.
Neither of these things are what a car *buyer* is typically interested in!
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Ashton Crusher wrote:

when I drive but when I need power I better have some. I'd rather drive a cr with good weight/power ratio and over powered engine. Wife chose Subie to picke up on Saturday. That CVT has 3 different drive modes on top of X-drive, also has paddle shift.
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On 10/15/2015 8:47 PM, Tony Hwang wrote:

We've not used the paddle shifters on the RDX. Maybe someday? <shrug> X-drive looks like it would be worthwhile in more inclement weather (it's sunny 360 days/year, here) or if you're into "off-roading".
Unfortunately, the driving modes don't affect the suspension/ride or steering.
I would be curious to see if you notice the "tranny hump" issue that I mentioned (in the passenger seat)...
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