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Old 07-07-2013, 10:26 AM   #1
skirush's Avatar
Drives: 2013 1LS
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Nowhere
Posts: 255
My 2013 LS vs. our BMW Z4

Prior to getting the Camaro, my wife and I had a BMW Z4. It had a 3.0 inline v6, automatic with paddle shifters, heated leather, etc. It was pretty decked out. Oh...and it was the convertible. Here's a pic:

It was a very fun car to drive. It's simply a beautiful car with great lines. The fact that it was convertible and fully decked out added to our enjoyment of the car. With the 3.0 it was very fast. The Z handled beautifully. You definitely felt the permagrim set in with that car too. My wife mostly drove the Z and she came home a few times and asked me to look into taking it to a race track to open it up a little bit. Z's are not that common on the road, so we got some attention with it. The white with red leather really stood out. It being a BMW, the car just felt solid and planted to the road. The doors were very heavy and solid; it made the car feel well built. It sat much lower than the Camaro.

My wife and I absolutely loved the car. It was also bmw certified so service was always good. There were three flaws with it (in my opinion). First, it was small (more of a problem for me than my wife). Don't get me wrong, it had plenty of leg and head room, but not a lot of shoulder room. My brother and I are 6' 2" and 6' respectively and we felt a little snug when we did go for a ride together. It wasn't a problem with just me and my wife (5'2"). It also looked small on the outside. It made me crazy when my wife would say it was "cute". I didn't want to drive a "cute" car. Looking at it looks Mazda Miata sized. Here's a pic of our Z next to a random Camaro in a parking lot.

I think you would agree it looks much smaller than the Camaro.

The second flaw is the lack of a back seat. That was the reason we had to get rid of it...we had a baby 8 months where to put a car seat. It was a sad day letting it go, but we had no choice. I sold it for a $1500 profit though!

Last, it being BMW certified, BMW required the dealer to put new run flat tires on it. Yes, it was nice to have $1200 worth of new tires, but man they sucked. Run flat tires feel like driving with metal tires. They don't absorb anything; every bump feels accentuated. A lot of people switch out the run flats for regular tires and say it resulted in a much better ride. I didn't get to that point where I needed new tires, so I only experienced the run flats.

The camaro is just as much fun to drive. I have to admit that I liked the BMW name...kind of miss that. Oddly, I get more attention in the Camaro than I did with the Z. I have had people walk up to me, out of their way, just to tell me how much they like my car...and even yell from the side walk "Hot Car". This type of thing never happened with the Z. Not sure why. I think it's a beautiful car. Maybe it's the smaller size of it. The attention with my camaro is strange to me since it's just an basic as they come! This amount of attention didn't happen with the Z. I had a few people say "Nice Car", even a girl take pics of it, but not the frequency and intensity as I get with the Camaro. I think my camaro being Red makes people notice it more...I don't know.

I'm very happy with the Camaro.

I like to tinker with cars, so the Camaro will be a little less expensive when it's time for mods or new parts. BMW parts don't come cheap. It needed a few things during my time with it, and I'm very glad it was all covered!

The interior of the Camaro doesn't even compare to my Z...we had leather everywhere and wood grain. But, then again, it's only an LS. I can't speak for nicer Camaros with more options and better interiors. I do think the Camaro is more comfortable. The seat is superior and of course it feels much more roomy. The Z's seat where heated and leather wrapped, but they seemed flat and lacked cushioning. The absolute worst part was that because the car lacked a back seat area...there was NO where to recline the front seat. Since I'm 6' I had to put the seat all the way back, and that meant basically no room to recline. I hated that part about the car.

On paper, both cars about about the same speed...However, I think the BMW Z felt more nimble. This is probably because the Z was lower to the ground and smaller. I've had my Camaro at faster speeds going down a curvy road so I know it handles just as well. I love the size of the Camaro. Not only is there a back seat and a decent sized trunk, but it's much bigger in every dimension. I think Chevy did a very good job in the feel of Camaro. It feels just as solidly built as the Z.

Last edited by skirush; 07-07-2013 at 10:38 AM.
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Old 07-07-2013, 12:10 PM   #2
alaskacamaro's Avatar
Drives: 2012 2SS 45TH Anniversary
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 713
Nice write up. Everyone agrees the interior quality on Camaro's is lacking. I rented an LS in 2010 when they first came out (I was literally one of the first customers at the rental). Seems like interior quality gets slightly better with model and year but even the 2013 ZL1 I was in a few weeks ago has inferior plastics, even if it is an improvement to my interior. Of course, you are paying a lot more for the look and feel of euro exotics.
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