Originally Posted by roundel335
I've got a Garmin 2955 to handle navigation, which isn't dependent on being "in range" of a cell tower. It does all the things you mention plus I can just talk to it instead of playing with a touch-screen or iDrive controller.
The problem with the onboard NAV system is that it's too expensive to start with and the updates are costly and infrequent. If they'd cut the price in half and provide at least quarterly updates to the maps plus traffic alerts at no extra cost, now THAT would be something I'd buy.
A handheld GPS will never be as good as a built-in system. You have to worry about thiefs smashing your window and stealing it or hiding it in your glove box after every use. It's not integrated with the car so it won't mute your music if it needs to talk. You obviously have never used navigation on an iDrive cause you can talk to it just like a Garmin and you can use Google Maps to send an address to the car so there's rarely any need to talk to it. Plus traffic alerts are free so I don't know what you're talking about.