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.
#14137 of 24726 Re: "What's a Lexus Worth?" [benzster]
Mar 01, 2006 (9:18 am)
Yes, in 2000 with the launch of the S Class 220 Chassis there was a restructure in margin to 7.5% from the previous 13 (or so). This was an attempt to stabilize the pricing and force the dealers to concentrate on their local market hence negating the need for buyers to "shop" other markets for the lowest price. In fact, it was stated that we would go to a nonnegotiable price structure. This was not forced by MB but suggested
Notice how the manufacturer wanted to sell their cars by "suggesting"/imposing restrictive dealer margins that help the manufacturer maintain a competetive price structure, at the sacrifice of the dealer's profits and not their own.
Further, any "suggestion" that buyers should be limited in their search for competitive prices is absurd.
It's just plain too much tampering and interference by the mnanufacturer.
It's one thing in this country to have price controls in effect with regards to some of our public utilites, but a luxury car is an entirely different situation.
Mercedes can package that BS any way they want to, but the stink is clear. If Mercedes Benz has any serious concerns about their lofty prices, then they should not look to the dealer's margin for a solution. They need to take a long hard look in the mirror for the answer.
#14138 of 24726 Re: "What's a Lexus Worth?" [tagman]
Mar 01, 2006 (9:25 am)
#14139 of 24726 Mercedes sales are getting better and better
Mar 02, 2006 (5:45 pm)
Here's a little blurb about MB sales in February.
A sign of things to come?
#14140 of 24726 My '06 Jaguar XJ Super V8
Mar 02, 2006 (6:02 pm)
I just wanted to chime in with my great experience with my '06 XJ Super V8. I am not a die hard Jaguar fan, have not dreamed about owning a Jag all my life. I did not intend to buy a Jaguar this time around. But having done so, I am really happy. Here is my story.
I had owned a two Cadillac Eldorado STS from 1995 through 2000. I enjoyed the sporty response and rapid acceleration. But when they announced that the model would be discontinued, I decided it would be a good time to step up in the world. At that time, the updated Lexus LS430 was introduced and it fit my budget. I owned it from 2001 through 2005. I had 68,000 problem-free, quiet, comfortable, mind-numbingly boring miles. It could go fairly fast, and with the "European Sport Package" could take corners fairly well, but it really didn't want to go fast or corner hard. As the lease came to an end, I resolved to get something more engaging. (Yes, a lease with 68,000 miles--what was I thinking?)
I test drove everything that was supposed to be a sporty sedan. (The wife required that it be a sedan.) I drove everything except the BMW 7 Series because it is still not good looking and no one I know has mastered the I-Drive.
I was especially looking forward to the Audi A8 because all the car magazines rave about it, and my wife had once owned a 2001 Audi A4 3.0 with quattro, and it was SO fun to drive. I was expecting a A4 with legroom. Nope. Ponderous feeling. Noticeably not quick. And after the Lexus, unacceptable cabin noise.
Drove the '07 MB S550 (a few were around the town available to drive). The best Lexus Mercedes ever made. Certainly much faster and better mannered than any MB I have driven before. (I have never been an MB fan.) Also nice looking, inside and out. But it just felt heavy and uninvolving. Other than the speed, it was difficult to see why I would pay $25,000 more than for a new Lexus. (And this was just before Lexus announced the new LS460.) I also tried a CLS55, which was extremely fast although it always felt as though it was working hard. The ride was not that punishing on the behind. But while the interior fit and finish looked nice, it somehow felt down-market. And it truly is a 4 door coupe. I doubted my wife would consider it a sedan.
The Maserati Quattroporte made me smile so much. I even found a way to snag three test drives! But each time after the adrenaline wore off, I couldn't help but wonder about reliability, fuel costs, insurance costs, repair costs and availability of qualified mechanics. And it is pricy. I sure hope Maserati can match others' reliability in the long run. This is car that deserves to be in the market.
So I was forced to drive a Jaguar. (I literally didn't want to because when the new aluminum model came out a few years ago I had sat in one and couldn't find a comfortable seat position.) I drove a JX8. It was nice. The dealer wanted me to try a XJR. I declined because I assumed it would be rougher riding than I had become used to. He talked me into trying a Super V8. Golly, it made me smile. Literally. Stupid fast, willing to run at the slightest provocation, so light and responsive. Quiet even when risking tickets for unlawful exhibition of speed. Smooth ride. And the extra seat buttons on the Super V8 got me into a comfortable driving position. So this is what Jaguar fans have been talking about all these years? I'm joining.
I have had the car for 8 weeks and have 2,000 miles on it. No problems, mechanically, but did get one speeding ticket. I'm being careful now.
#14141 of 24726 Re: Mercedes sales are getting better and better [tagman]
Mar 02, 2006 (6:22 pm)
I wonder how that compares to the first month sales of the outgoing S, when it was brand new?
#14142 of 24726 Re: Mercedes sales are getting better and better [tagman]
Mar 02, 2006 (9:52 pm)
#14143 of 24726 Re: Mercedes sales are getting better and better [syswei]
Mar 03, 2006 (9:11 am)
I wonder how that compares to the first month sales of the outgoing S, when it was brand new?
The 2000 S-Class was released (the 1st year of the previous body) in March 1999. The total MB units sold for that month was about 16k+, which is pretty close to the month of the 2007 S-Class release (Feb 2006) of 17k+. The 2000 S-Class sold 2403 units in its first month, while the 2007 sold 3360.
Here's the link for reference: Autoworld.com
#14144 of 24726 Re: Mercedes sales are getting better and better [bdr127]
Mar 03, 2006 (9:18 pm)
Remember you are looking at sales/shipments to dealers not sales to Consumers. Same thing with Lexus on the nearly 4K IS sales and the huge November figures they had. The latter was just sales to dealers in anticipation of the December to Remember sale. It's not yet actually purchased by consumers though I'm sure some of these shipments stated are spoken for. How great the next two months of sales/shipments to dealers turn out to be is the real telling point of whether the February unit sales are really moving to consumers or are getting stockpiled into dealer inventory. I think many people read mfr. sales stats as thinking those are units sold to the public when in fact you are looking at wholessale stats.
#14145 of 24726 I'm one of them!
Mar 05, 2006 (1:41 pm)
Can you substantiate that post, LJ?
Why would anyone publicly post wholesale shipments, and release that to the news as sales/registrations? That's beyond deceptive, and shouldn't be hard to be caught on.
Could be quite a public relations nightmare, plus impunes the credibility of the reporting medias involved.
#14146 of 24726 Re: I'm one of them! [drfill]
Mar 05, 2006 (4:30 pm)
Well - just think about it. Sales are reported on the first business day of the new month for the prior month. There is no way that each individual sale to a consumer - from every dealer in the US - is tabulated by an auto manufacturer, let alone verified for public release in real time or in such fast turn around time. Since this is public data that affects stock price there is no way anyone is releasing that type of data in this age of SEC scrutiny unless it comes from there own hardcore systems that they are 100% in control of. Just the infrastructure needed to support a real-time sales system at the dealer network would be a big undertaking. It would also be costly and error prone and hardly be trusted for reporting public data that is closely watched. It would only happen if it was reported on by a third party auditor and such a party would never release it that quickly. Clearly the figures are entirely based on each manufacturers production/delivery system of cars shipped from their factories to dealers and fleets. That is 100% verifiable by the mfr. Lastly was the S-class even available for sale on February 1st? Wouldn't Lexus December sales be a lot bigger than November if we were really seeing consumer sales given the big December promotion and all the holidays taken by businesses after December 15-20th. Pretty clear to me that you can always bank on Novemmber being a huge sales month for Lexus in advance of the December pronotion. BTW - I'm sick of the jingle but what a great marketing move that was. With all the days off people have after December 15th it's like Saturdays in Lexus dealerships almost every day in the latter half of December.
The closest thing we have to real time public sales is the RL Polk registration data which is obtained from MV data of the states. I'm not sure they even get it from every state. We all know full well that government systems never report that quickly and most permanent registrations are delayed 1-2 weeks anyway. So at best that consumer data for February won't even be known until later in March. The Polk data is bought heavily by the auto mfs as that data enables them to make factory planning and production decisions as it shows what dealer inventory is moving and in what zipcodes.