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My first thought is... they both refrigerate. But the real questions are; what kind of building do you have, how big is your apartment, what size fridge can your kitchen accommodate (this is a big question).
Clearly the cost is one of the main differences, but if we aren't focusing too much on that, the real question is, "will someone expect a subzero in my apartment?". I am redoing my kitchen right now and I am going with all GE appliances because 1) they all match, 2) there was a limited selection of what would fit in my kitchen, and most importantly 3) a Subzero or similar manufacturer would be overkill for my small space.
Don't get me wrong, the person you sell to will be thrilled to have a Subzero. But if it doesn't make sense in your space/building, go with the Liehberr (or another brand, I personally am not too thrilled with them on looks alone).
(Matthew Russell - Brown Harris Stevens)
we had the same dilemma and decided to get an electrolux. we dplurged on a stove
I'm curious too . . . both as to merits, cost, reliability and as to resale value.
Set aside resale and let's just talk usage. I liked the Liebherr more and got it. Both have the great freezer-on-the-bottom design. Both are designed so the fridge layout makes good, efficient sense. The subzero styling was a little cliche to me and I found the Liebherr a little more refreshing and unexpected but only in a very subtle way since they are so similar overall. I liked the Liebherr freezer better as I recall. Those drawers are very useful for organizing and finding stuff. Of key importance to me, since all other things were essentially equal notwithstanding the above small things, was the Liebherrs have a much better service record. I HATE, hate, hate broken things in the apartment and having to deal with servicing them. Maintenance records matter a lot to me. And Subzeros have more stuff go wrong.
So I got the Liebherr and for 1.5 years have loved it. And yes, I saved $1500-2000--I don't recall.
I put in the 36" Liebherr with french doors in a recent renovation. So far, so good -- extremely quiet, no issues. We got the fully integrated model, which I think looks great (there are panels on it that match the cabinetry). It's supposed to be very energy efficient as well. BTW, the french door is a good option if your space is a bit narrow -- you don't have a huge door swinging out into the middle of the space.
Stay away from the Sub-Zero 700TCI. Mine has had > 8 service calls over a ten year period. The only reason why I haven't replaced it with a Liebherr is that the dimensions between the two are different.
I've had the subz 700tci 2x. No problems. Now have the 736tci - 2 service calls in 4 years.
I've had the subzero for about 10 years - one service call.
I've had a liebherr for about 4yrs (30" w/panels). The layout is excellent - I am consistently amazed at how much we can fit in it. The extra height vs. more run of the mill names is very useful in a NYC apartment. Very quiet. No need for a service call.
loved my liebherr. Had it in my last rental and miss it.
we got liebherr and we love it! my friend got subzero and loves it too but it's 1.5K more for the same size