Last post on Jan 28, 2013 at 5:55 PM
You are in the Sedans
What is this discussion about?
Audi A8, BMW 7 Series, Jaguar XJ-Series, Lexus LS 460, Mercedes-Benz S-Class, Volkswagen Phaeton, Maserati Quattroporte, Mercedes-Benz CL-Class, Sedan
Let's try to define this forum as being limited to luxury performance vehicles where the mainstream version in a typical configuration has an MSRP of at least $60k.
A luxury vehicle with a base price of $59k qualifies because it would typically be bought with some additional equipment, bringing the MSRP over $60k.
Vehicles like the E, 5, A6, M, or GS, even if available in certain versions over $60k, don't qualify because they are cars from companies that have higher end cars in their lineups.
#12301 of 24726 Re: The Union Jack [merc1]
Dec 23, 2005 (7:27 am)
Here's the sales figures from autosite.com for MB thru Nov 2005 comparing it to 2004
E class: 41,221 (2004: 46,730)
S class: 14,124 (2004: 18,082)
Clk coupe: 6,256 (2004: 9,452)
SL: 8,982 (2004: 11,804)
MB has sold about 13k of the new CLS's this year, so that can be called a success, and the ML is still doing quite well. But with those 4 lines shown above, it's a loss of 15,483 cars over the same time in 2004 for Mercedes.
The whole purpose of having new models like the CLS is to increase market share and penetration. But when you lose nearly 16k cars in the other direction, that's not good.
#12302 of 24726 Re: The Union Jack [rjlaero]
Dec 23, 2005 (8:20 am)
Improvements in MB sales are likely to happen next year when:
The E class gets a face lift next year
The new S class arrives
The SL last year sold in high numbers last year since it was a relatively new car.
Bottom Line: Picking specific car stats and predicting the demise of MB is not sufficient in itself. You got to look at overall sales and MB sales have not done too badly up to now.
#12303 of 24726 Re: The Union Jack [dewey]
Dec 23, 2005 (10:19 am)
Mercedes is not in "demise", but they just aren't as strong as they use to be in the United States from the 70's to 90's.
I think the product line has been watered down from poor styling choices and spotty reliablity over the last 5 years. MB resale is no where near as high as it use to be.
And cutting out things like free maintenace is costing them business as well in the competitive high line market.
#12304 of 24726 Re: The Union Jack [rjlaero]
Dec 23, 2005 (12:04 pm)
Schremp's "Mercedes in every garage" idea was a disasterous one. Thats not what Benz should be all about. BMW and Audi have their "A" game on, there just isn't room in this market for mistakes like that.
#12305 of 24726 Jaguar Would Not Survive Without Ford
Dec 23, 2005 (3:22 pm)
Face it, if FORD hadn't bought Jaguar, they would be long out of business. It is true, Sir William Lyons built great cars in the 50's and 60's-but a small company like Jaguar cannot survive today. Plus, even in their heydey, Jags were a nightmare to maintain-and those ancient 3-SU carb setups were impossible. So, what will Ford do with the line? I'd say drop the low-priced models and stick with the >80K line. This is their best course
#12306 of 24726 Re: Jaguar Would Not Survive Without Ford [martian]
Dec 23, 2005 (10:58 pm)
The reasons behind the acquisition are not a secret. Jaguar needed help. However, the whole Ford group is struggling, as is Jaguar. They have already re-aligned Jaguar production numbers and seem to be re-focusing Jaguar's marketing strategy.
The reliability reports from JD Power and others are much improved since Ford took over, but the brand has not seemingly built much recognition of this. I still hear folks who assume that all Jags are service problems....that is very old news.
They have revised production numbers downward and seem to be headed towards a more exclusive group of Jaguar buyers in the future rather than building the line with cars like the X Type. If they can build a few good cars for the Jag lovers this may be the best approach. Make it a focused smaller luxury brand, and stop trying to sell what is basically a $32,000 Ford ---with Jaguar styling cues.
Ford has seemingly missed the boat in the overall luxury class...They sort of blew it with Jaguar as a growth platform too. The problem seems to be that Ford had hopes of using the Jaguar marque to compete in a broad luxury class. They are now retrenching. At the same time, in the U.S. Lincoln seems to be a struggling brand and has no enthusiast interest. Ford has not found the formula to build a luxury class car line that gets much market share.
By the way, they really have something good with the aluminum chassis and body. My own XJR is quick, feels lively, and gets good gas mileage for a 400 hp car. The new XK replacement is based on this same basic aluminum construction, so we will see what happens with it.
#12307 of 24726 Re: Jaguar Would Not Survive Without Ford [martian]
Dec 24, 2005 (8:15 am)
Ford has handled Volvo very well, but they have made mistake after mistake with Jaguar. Volvo was out of money, and Ford gave them the financial backing to stay in business, but otherwise kept a safe distance. Just look at the difference between Volvo and Saab to see how much better Ford's approach has been.
With Jaguar though, Ford seemed to have this "we know what's best for you" ideal. Makes sense, after all, just look at the luxury powerhouse that is Lincoln. They blindly followed Benz down the "Jaguar for everyone" path, the only problems being that Ford had no decent platforms or engines to give, and that weak V6s, FWD, and cost cutting is the last thing Jaguar should be about. Could any other automaker have done any worse with Jag (other than perhaps GM)?
Is shutting down production at Browns Lane an example of the "excellent" job Ford has done with Jag?
#12308 of 24726 Jaguar and Others
Dec 24, 2005 (8:49 am)
I've long maintained Ford handled the takeover of Jaguar poorly. I read Jaguar World Monthly fairly regularly and was appalled with their new Operations Head Bennie Fowler. The guy is from Detroit, what does he know about the Jaguar mystique? He seemed to be offended when the interviewer asked him about the X-Type. He doesn't seem to understand when you badge a Ford Contour as a Jaguar people are going to have issues with it. In a nutshell I don't think Ford understands the "Essence of Jaguar." Jaguar is not supposed to be in the reach of the common person, that's what Lincoln is for!
I was not impressed with the new XJ. It doesn't even look like a Jaguar. Even worse, it strongly resembles the X-Type. Jaguar, despite having the highest Satisfaction rates in the industry, has only a 37.1% Retention (Loyalty)rate...Mercedes has a 52% Retention rate despite all of their current quality issues.
Has anyone seen the new S Class preview up on Mercedes Website? The car looks much better in the darker colors. I still don't like the rear at all, but the front looks quite bold. It seems more "substantial" than the current model. Maybe I'll have a look when it comes out in the showrooms. My only worry is that it will suffer from the same electrical maladies that the current generation has.
I wish you all a Merry Christmas,
#12309 of 24726 The Problem with Car Jockeys, help please.
Dec 24, 2005 (10:19 am)
Please give me some advice as to how to deal with Car Jockies who wants to toy with cars. I have a bland new car and I had to park in Manhattan of New York City Often.
There 'park and lock' places are hard to find. And I often have to park underneath the building where I have to carry out a task.
Twice now, since I got this bland new car, I found a lot of the electronic gadgetry settings are changed when I get my car back.
I tip these guys often too, and they are familiar faces to me. I thought of complaining to management.
To be perfectly honest, my car cost nothing close to $50,000. But I figure that people who have cars of that price range probably have more of these experiences, and might have learn how to deal with them.
#12310 of 24726 Ford and Jaguar
Dec 24, 2005 (10:40 am)
Ford injects $2 bn for Jaguar loss
Ford still has confidence in the future of Jaguar.