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.
Aug 31, 2003 (6:50 pm)
i know. of all people, i happened to marry a woman who has absolutely no interest whatsoever in cars. (she always gets the new GX confused with the ML500, or the new Accord coupe with my SL. i am not joking at all). i had to fool (or trick) her into getting the Lexus on our anniversary by going to the dealership, asking to drive a demo GX, and at the end, i arranged the manager to offer my wife to bring it home for the weekend. when she bluntly said "no", he said "too bad, here's the keys. it's yours." (she was so attached to her Mercedes ML that seconds later, she was crying at the Lexus dealership, and everyone was staring at us)
is Audi really that bad? i guess seeing can be deceiving. i was truly impressed by the overall fit-in-finish of the A8L, TT, allroad...i knew that the older models of audi suffered significant reliability issues, but i thought that audi changed. my daughter's audi TT is working beautifully for her. i guess not.
i am planning on trading in the S-Class anytime now if i can get a good deal on a new good car. i used to own a '89 300E 2.6 Black Pearl metallic that was truly dear to me (actually my wife). that was my favorite MB that i ever purchased. it never failed her for the 10 year that we owned it, and boy, you should have seen her the day we traded it in for the ML320 (i thought our 14-year old family dog died).
it had 100,000 miles on it when the mileage ticker stopped working, so i estimate that it had about 115,000 miles when we sold it.
i am trying to find more pictures of the official refresh for the 2004 7-series. so far, based on what i have seen, i am not impressed. i actually think that the front headlamps do not look as dramatic as before; i liked the "eagle-like" look of the original headlamps more. the rear looks just the same. i don't know if the sources i went to were lousy, though.
my SL is in the body shop right now. i was informed that it would take a little over a month for new parts to come in. i told them to go a good job this time, as last time when my S430 was hit in the rear again, it took 2 months, and the entire lining of the trunk was loose, and a loud metal-against-metal sound could be heard in the rear seats. they have been unable to find the "noise" at the back.
I am also considering replacing the radio antannae. i don't know about other fellow 2000-2003 S-Class owners, but the FM, particularily AM reception stinks. all i really hear is static. the dealership (i have complained constantly to MB USA, and the dealership itself) apparently does not know what is wrong. they said the sameting when my gas gauge fluctuated between FULL and 1/4 within 2 minutes. they took out the entire dashboard, rear gas tank sensor, and all i know is that it still moves up and down (though not as badly), and as a result, there are more rattling noises BOTH near the instrument cluster and behind the rear headrests.
Sep 01, 2003 (9:30 am)
Ah, yes the good old 300e. I have 150 thousandish miles on mine. Such a wonderful car to drive. I can't imagine trading it in for an M though! What a difference in those two cars.
I am sure you could get a good deal on a 2003 S. But, you might want to wait for the 2004. It gets the 7 speed tranny. But if that isn't important to you, just go for the 2003. Are you considering the 430 or the 500?
Audi and VW just aren't reliable. Audi has made the A8 attractive to more customers. But, they will never keep them if they can't grasp some quality control. It is a shame, really, because they make beautiful cars. Their interiors are top notch. And I wish that were reason enough to buy a car.
And, BMW. The 2004 7, should be changed in some areas. But I am not expecting anything durastic. Hopefully they will make the rear more attractive. Chris Bangle is walking on very thin ice right now. The 5 will be the true test of his fate with BMW.
Sep 03, 2003 (7:16 am)
My dealership has a 2003 Alpina Z8 available. Has anyone had any experience with a Z8? The car is a beauty, but I am hesitant as I know that they were never very popular.
Sep 03, 2003 (4:08 pm)
Nice car! Mucho dinero!
Sep 04, 2003 (10:19 am)
I have a good friend with a Z8. I love his car, and have asked to have the first tight of refusal whenever he decides to sell it. They are very nice cars, but some folks do not know that they are are more of a grand touring roadster, than a true high performance sports car.
The Alpina (with automatic tranny only)is the last incarnation of the low production Z8, so it seems that they will always retain some collectability and value.
Sep 07, 2003 (8:46 pm)
I dig the Crossfire, it provides some eye-candy for the road, something different to look at. I see boo20 corrected you about the opinion on the previous S-Class and the LS430. Basically you keep leaving out one very important word when that argument is raised..."poor". The LS430 is a poor copy or imitation of the previous S-Class. Speaking of which, it isn't a mere coincidence that 04' LS430 has nearly the same tailamps as the 03' S-Class, wheels similiar to any number of Mercedes models and the front end has been reshaped to look like the current S, you know the car they couldn't copy back in 01' due to having set the design in stone to copy the previous S. I find this relentless copying or mimicing (insert the synonym of choice here) to be the most ridiculous spectical on the automotive landscape. BMW, Audi, Cadillac, Infiniti, Jaguar, and MB are able to do so much without looking like their nearest competitor.
About the Toyota Camry Solara. I find it most interesting that all the Lexus fans knocked Mercedes for making the CLK, SL and C-Coupe similiar looking from the front, yet Toyota goes and makes a Camry of all things look just like a 60K Lexus, which is supposed to be different "brand" unlike the C, CLK and SL which *should* look alike because their all "Mercedes-Benzes".
About Lexus detracters saying that Lexus cars have no character or emotion, it's pretty much true anytime you read any review of their cars, that is a "universal" opinion. See the SC430 comparo in the Oct issue of C&D. True, these are about the only major criticisms the Euro crowd can level at Lexus' cars...boring styling and uninvolving driving experience. The only reason Lexus fans find issue with Mercedes', or any other Euro brand's styling "shouting" anything is because Lexus' doesn't. What would be so terrible if Lexus made the LS430's styling match its other attributes? As far as Mercedes' image and what not, that surely isn't their fault if Lexus can't attain the same rub with people.
#2704 of 24726 Car&Driver on SC430
Sep 08, 2003 (5:46 am)
"Another Lexus demonstration of auto perfection based on a sterile driving experience!"
Ouch! This from the most conservative of all mainstream auto magazines!
It was comparing SC with SL500, 911, XLR & XK8. It says SC is the anti-Porsche: one never lets you forget you're in a car, one makes you forget you're in a car!
Sep 08, 2003 (6:13 am)
You and I will simply have to disagree on a number of things. The 2004 LS430 has - in my opinion - only modest facelift changes over the 2003. The front headlights look - to me - very much like the old LS400 headlights and not at all like the new S. The taillight change is simply a stripe in the middle with no design change at all from the previous edition. Lastly I have always thought the LS was a classy elegant car from day one. I also think that now that the LS430 went back to a bit more LS400 front end look that it is even better looking than the 2001-2003 years. We just see different things. I don't see any copying whatsoever to the new S.
I think MB has made the Crossfire too much like a clk. It looks like an MB rather than a Chrysler. It was inevitable that the brands would mix at some point. The problem is that if they go too far in the mixing they may lose the more expensive MB buyers or entry buyers. If they do not go far enough Chrysler stays in a downward spiral. It's a daunting challenge and it won't be easy. I see that the Pacifica is already a rebate car.
Toyota should have made the Solara its own car. A stupid mistake in my opinion. On the other hand they may be planning changes for the SC so who knows. I can't argue with their great success.
As for passion it seems hard for people that read mags to understand that Lexus drivers have plenty of passion for driving hard. The cars they make are bred to be what they are though - silky smooth effortless cars to meet the driving needs of the road - not the racetrack. The guys who rate cars in magazines feel the same way about cars today as I did in my teens and early 20's. They have never changed so they simply don't see the desires people have moved on to. Once you get married and have an infant in that back seat you quickly change your perspectives about what is important in a car. We still like good handling as we get older (Lexus gives you plenty of it) and go through changes in our lives but a great ride, quiet interior and that silky smooth engine become equally if not more important. Lexus hits that spot better than any auto manufacturer which is exactly what they set out to do.
Sep 08, 2003 (6:33 am)
SC430 supposedly has backseats. Would anyone subject even a baby to it? I hope not, those backseats have zero legroom. SC is supposed to be a sporty coupe, and it wants the driver to feel as in a living room?
I heard many times Camry is a car for people who don't want to drive. Evidently Lexus is the Camry of luxury cars!