Originally Posted by KoenG
Yes a 535i offers much more, but the cost per mile is almost twice what the 520d will set you back. When you search within the same cost category, the 520d is king.
On top, in most driving conditions the difference is small, I do 70% highway driving at rediculous low speeds on cruise control and here the 520d reigns seen its' incredible frugality, 25% in the traffic jam where the engine is stopped-started, and 5% more motivational stuff. Only in the latter context, the 535i is releasing its' extra stuff probably with some authority then. I also agree the engine sound is much sweeter, but for twice the cost?
I agree also that it is a mental comfort state you're in when you know you're driving a 530d or so, but in real life with real money, I also feel mental comfort knowing that driving my 5-series is not a hold-up on my bank account...
Totally agree for many buyers/users the 520d will be the best package. In fact the 520d is one of the best BMW value cars in the UK, when you think about what you get for the money, compared to the 3-series.
I'm a private buyer and would sooner have a nearly new car with a better specification, than a more basic new car. Hence why I'm in the 535i. Nearly new, ex BMW HQ car loaded with options, less than 6k miles, at over 40% under list price. Therefore the running costs per mile are very similar to a new 520d with the options I have on my car. For me that is a 'win win' drive.
I intend to run it for several years, so depreciation should be levelled out at the other end as well.