Which all-wheel-drive sports sedan should I buy?

I'm looking for an all-wheel-drive sedan; my front-wheel-drive Acura TSX just does not do well in the wintry snow/ice. Ideally, [the new sedan] should be reliable, sporty and come with a manual transmission, if possible. I'm looking at a 2009 Subaru Impreza WRX, BMW 328xi/335xi and the Infinity G37x. In terms of reliability, which one is best? The G37x appear to be the most reliable of the three but has no manual with the all-wheel-drive model. Which one do you suggest?

Peter C., Seattle

Before you buy a new car, you might want to try a set of winter tires on your TSX, if you haven’t already. Winter tires can greatly improve snow traction and stability.

If you’re convinced you need a new car, the G37x — shown below — has very good reliability ratings, and in our tests has performed admirably in wintry conditions. Cars.com senior editor Joe Wiesenfelder writes about the G37x’s snow prowess in his review, found here. Consumer Reports rates the G37x’s new-car-predicted reliability as Better Than Average. In the most recent J.D. Power and Associates three-year dependability study, the previous-generation 2006 G35 earned an overall 4/5 rating. As you mentioned, it does not come with a manual transmission.

G37x

The Subaru WRX isn’t as luxurious as the G37 or 3-Series, but Subaru’s reliability is solid. The WRX — with an MSRP of $24,995 — is much less expensive than the others; the 328 xDrive’s MSRP is $35,600, the G37x starts at $35,750, and 335 xDrive is $42,300. The WRX’s predicted reliability from CR is Average. J.D. Power and Associates scores the 2006 Impreza an overall 4/5 in its three-year dependability study.

As for the BMW models, the 335 gets a Worse Than Average reliability rating from Consumer Reports. The 328 does rate better with an Average rating, but the G37 makes a very competitive case with its reliability scores.

The G37, WRX and 328 are all Cars.com Best Bets for 2009.

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Answered by Joe Bruzek on May 15, 2009 in BMW , BMW 3-Series , Infiniti , Infiniti G37 , Subaru , Subaru WRX | Permalink

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