The reviewer is right, and does not need to change anything. The BMW IS a more tautly sprung car than the Lexus. The seat leather is thicker, the suspension is harder, and it's not nearly as quiet in the cabin. It is not nearly so much a luxury car as the Lexus is.
But guess what? That doesn't matter. In my opinion, the cars were engineered to satisfy very different buyers. The BMW is a driver's car, and has the soul of a sports car. The Lexus is a luxury car, and has the soul of a La-Z-Boy. Nothing wrong with that - some drivers prefer to be cosseted and isolated from the road. The BMW simply does not cater to that particular market segment.
I'm not arguing that the BMW is less desirable than the LS400 but here in the UK, a motoring TV show ran a feature on both these cars along with a couple of other rivals back in the late 90's. One of the tests was to lift the bonnet (hood) and place a glass of water on the top of each engine. The engines were then revved to 6,000 RPM. The BMW and all the others threw the glass off, but the Lexus sat there with barely a ripple in the water.
The Lexus motor is smoother than the BMW's.
I just finished the three year lease on the car reviewed above and chose to turn it in rather than purchase it. Although this may have been the best handling and most fun to drive car I have ever had it is not perfect. The technology is getting old in this car. The nav system is cd based and requires six discs to cover the U.S.. The sound system is a disappointment and the cup holders are useless.
The second comment above is correct. Both the LS400 and 7 series a great cars, but are designed for different likes. I loved both cars, but have to admit the BMW was more fun to drive. On long trips I prefer the smoothness and quiet ride of the Lexus. The sound system was better too.
I have a BMW 740il, and this car without a doubt is the finest car in the world, second to n o n e. Buy a Lexus and good luck,but you are missing the thrill of a lifetime.
When comparing the Lexus and BMW it's silly to put down one relative to the other. They're different cars for different markets. Each is the best in the business at meeting the needs of its respective owner base. Things go wrong only when, for the wrong reasons, somebody from one group buys the car designed for the other group.
I am the writer of the review and the end of lease comment above. I was not putting the BMW down as compared to the Lexus, I was just telling people contemplating the purchase of these cars what I liked about each one and what I didn't like. I knew what I was getting when I leased the 740. I enjoyed driving that car and still miss it. That doesn't mean that I didn't miss the Lexus ride on long trips. I have been driving a Ford SUV for the past year and a half and like that too. I am trying to decide now between an Audi A8L and the Mercedes S430. I know, different cars, but that's the fun of it! Diversity.
If cup holders and sound system was your only complaint during 4 year lease time, I'm definitely going to buy that car ;)!!
Let me explain a little further. The BMW was a great car. The handling was the best thing about the car. It felt much smaller than it really is and the power was great. I would recommend the 2000 or 2001 7 series. But, the cup holders are useless. The front ones are too close to the dashboard so all, but the smallest cups don't fit. The rear seat cup holders are designed to hold tiny juice cans only. The sound system has plenty of watts and neat features, but has terrible bass and not much range. It may seem like a small thing, but when you pay over $1000 a month to lease a car it should not have these annoyances.
My Dad just bought a 2000 740iL and I can agree, it's not the most perfectly engineered car in the world.
The "cupholders" are actually in fact canholders, and BMW has a reputation for poorly designing such canholders.
Still, I would take this car over any Toyota (Lexus), or American V-8 lux car. The ride is better than all the Lincolns and Cadillacs that I have ever been in, and the car actually ADAPTS to the driver. Bet you won't get that from a Lex.
The back seat is where I have been spending most of my time because it is just that comfortable and roomy. Even when my dad sits in the front I have plenty of room.
Plus, it's a BMW. Just the mention of the name to a person immediately communicates luxury and style.
About the navigation. How else is there to be? Sure it's going to take 6 CD's to cover the whole country. It's the WHOLE country. We don't live in the Vatican you know.
Plus, if you take proper care of your car, most of these problems would not even exist. Some people just buy the car to say that they have a BMW, and don't know how to take care of it.
My take: It's a great car that my dad fully intends to drive into the ground. Never buy a car that needs care you can't or won't give. Buying a car is never no-fault. Something WILL go wrong.
We have a 1998 740i and it has terrible cupholders and BMW should consider redesigning those, but the car is the finest on the road even a Rolls Royce is not finer than the 740 a terrific car and a very dependable one as well.
1997 740i owner. Just bought in London. Best car I have ever owned. I agree will all points above. highly recommend this car. expensive to run however. service inspection 2 costs a fortune. bmw original parts are also ridiculously expensive.
Cup holders? Who in the world think about the design of cup holders while going 50-60 on a curly road? Or 150-160 on a straight one? It against the very nature of driving the machine.
It is the road, the car and you. Don't let the cup holders get in between.
The A is for automatic, that means 740i has manual transmission and 740iA has automatic transmission.
First of all I enjoyed all of the comments on both automobiles, but BMW engineering is the best, one can even say its is metempirical, remember the Lexus people in the 70s went and brought as many German cars as they could and took them back to japan and disassembled them need I say more, BMWs history in racing and tradition takes a backseat to no one. Please study automotive history people, and then make your comments. God bless you all.