Last post on Jan 28, 2013 at 6:55 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.
#6826 of 24723 Kristie Luxury mostly "SUV" sales zoom, not so much cars
Oct 12, 2004 (9:30 am)
It seems that most growth in the luxury business, has been in SUV's and 'crossover' vehicles.
For example 2004 sales at BMW the 3, 5, 7, Z4, X5 are all substantially behind 2003. The new 6 has sold a few thousand cars. The new entry priced X3 is 23,000+ units YTD and the only reason why BMW is showing year over year growth.
Lexus on the other hand shows strong growth in the ES and LS car lines, as well as the GX and hot RX.
At Cadillac, the traditional Deville, Seville car lines fell sharply, while the newer CTS and Escalade/SRX's grew.
At Mercedes sales have fallen in the C and S class cars AND G and M SUV's. The E is up 6% along with some of the niche specialty cars.
#6827 of 24723 Measures of luxury are not exactly clear
Oct 13, 2004 (6:03 am)
I've always said that performance is a luxury so the torque argument holds water. But torque (when combined with weight and gearing) translates into acceleration, and the RL's 6.5 sec 0-60 betters that of the S430's 6.9. One has six cylinders, the other eight, yet people put them in different leagues.
Then again, performance is not the only luxury factor. If it was BMW would be king. If torque were the only factor, no one would come close to Mercedes. The fact is, luxury demands a balance of characteristics. I'm not saying the RL is threatening to own the holy grail of luxury, but when you look at the borders of these categories the lines are blurred and categorization is only a vague reference point.
According to the V8 argument, cars such as the 545, E500, M45, CTS-V, STS, GS430, M5, E55 belong in this thread but I don't see their names on the masthead. Are these cars high-end luxury marques? In my book they are but something tells me people on the V8 end of the luxury debate will give them the boot for other reasons. In a nutshell they're not the portly, executive, Cuban-cigar cruisers. High-end luxury needs a little fat.
We all know the RL is not going to go head-to-head against the big barges. Size alone precludes this. Cars like the 5 and GS are its competition. But I'll tell you one thing, there will be people who consider the big babies and walk away buying an RL saying it just doesn't make sense to spend a lot more to get a little more. Draw the lines as you would like, but remember, apples and oranges are both fruit and some people would rather pay 50 cents for an apple than a buck for an orange.
Ljflx, can these high-end luxury cars core a apple?
#6828 of 24723 Re: Measures of luxury are not exactly clear [designman]
Oct 13, 2004 (8:44 am)
Absolutely. They are all great cars. But high order luxury, from my viewpoint, is a roomy family sedan with plenty of trunk space, a spectacular and quiet ride, plenty of power, sufficient handling, great interiors and creature comforts, the right balance of techno gadgets (not the awful land BMW is trying to bring us to), a great stereo and reliability you can go to the bank on. Tell 3 adults crammed into the back seat of an E, GS, A6 or 5-series (all with or without a V8) that they should be so greatful that they are riding in a high quality lux car and see what kind of a look you get. Luxury includes space and space begets bigger engines. The E was ruled out the moment I drove it because it was too small. The ride was noticably inferior to an S-class or any car in this segment. That doesn't mean it wasn't a good riding car though but for $60K I want a lot better than that anyway.
For the record I found the S430 to be underpowered when I drove it. The S500 was an entirely different story.
#6830 of 24723 Re: Measures of luxury are not exactly clear [livinbmw]
Oct 13, 2004 (8:53 am)
Didn't shoppers choose the LS400 over the German cars in 1990? Acura has a great car on its hands that will steal shoppers for sure from any make. I just think it falls short of the barges in this segment.
#6832 of 24723 designman
Oct 13, 2004 (9:05 am)
Just remember an important thing. In the real high end cars handkerchiefs are for showin, not blowin. And never get into accidents with traffic judges no matter what you are driving.