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.
#7456 of 24723 Re: [denaliinpa]
Feb 13, 2005 (11:59 am)
Having high end >$100K cars isn't the sole definition of "High End" That's just pure snobbery. Jaguar's XJ Vanden Plas is around 80K these days, yet it is outperformed by LS430 hands down. It goes to show price isn't commiserate with competitiveness. Of course "status" is a big MB attraction..Have you seen their "Unlike Any Other" media campaigns lately? They show pictures of people posing next to their cars..It's probably the dumbest thing I've ever seen. If Lexus ever does anything like that I'll sell both of mine and buy a Camry.
Even the Autorags consider the LS a worthy competitor to the 7-Series, S Class, and A8..The last C/D comparo ranked the LS the top pick..I think the Motor Trend had it second behind the Audi..The Lexus detractors love to bash the car on marque and driving dyanamics..Last time I checked, marque is more fodder for BS sessions that anything else..In the case of BMW I'd defintely say there is a big difference in dynamics.
When I went to the MB dealer to look at S Class cars, I noted the sticker on the S500 is 90K with all taxes..Granted the S500 probably has more toys than the LS430 Ultra but does it deliver 30K more of product? Not at all. I thought the S was a nice car, but the practical aspects of the purchase decision made me buy yet another Lexus..Pure and simple, the Lexus is a thinking (wo)man's car..It'll take that $30K and keep it in the market. Seeing as I only paid 18K for my new one (With trade of my old) it will probably pay for my next two LS cars.
If you were to do some research, you'll find the ES330 shares 25% of its parts with the Camry. Drive the two and you'll note the difference. The RX came out before the Highlander and definitely bears no physical resemblance to the Highlander. So what if the glass has Toyota written on it? I'm not buying it for the name!
Stylewise, I don't think any automaker is producing anything great looking at the moment..The S had a nice profile, but lacks the grand look of the W126..The SL is an attention getter..But the others are nothing special..Jaguar had it right with the previous XJ, but now only the XK is appealing.
At the end of the day, it's the balance sheets that indicate success..Lexus on its' own has been a winner since 1990. Toyota is probably one of the most profitable brands out there..You can't argue with that.
Feb 13, 2005 (12:39 pm)
If to you the body design is the one and only cryteria for a High End Lux Car...MB is for you but maybe Jag would be even better...
If Lux means Quiet, Smooth, Power, Safety, and Reliability...and on those rare occasions unequaled dealer performance...Maybe you want to think about an LS430...The ultra is around $70,000 Has every creature comfort and matches up nicely to any $110,000+ S600.....But more importantly...EVERY TIME you turn the Key it goes and when you are in the worst part of town or the the most deserted road in the world you can count on it to get you where you want to go....
Days in the shop...Without your car...and wasting your time...do not spell Luxury.
#7458 of 24723 Re: [michael_mattox]
Feb 13, 2005 (1:14 pm)
And for those seeking a less "buttery" ride...The PHAETON is a great alternative...
That "buttery" is from a PHAETON owner and former Lexus owner...
#7459 of 24723 I second that.
Feb 13, 2005 (2:49 pm)
I moved from an LS430UL to a Phaeton. I am quite happy with the move so far.
Feb 13, 2005 (3:53 pm)
"They do make Z-rated summer-only tires that are great in the rain... Many, many of them."
Thanks for pointing that out. Actually a colleague of mine has them on a 540 with SP. His are extremely noisy. I wish we could try out tires like we do cars.
Feb 13, 2005 (4:26 pm)
a couple of points.
the LS430 is no way comparable to the S600.
The S600 has 500HP!...the LS290? also the S class is only available in the US in the Long version. when it comes to age between the two...the S class has not had one change to the exterior sheet metal. the LS had the entire front end massaged to be more appealing. that is what i based my age comment on.
as for the Camry and the ES...they are basically the same car. same engine, platform and transmission. sure they nice up the ES a bit but in the end it is a well optioned Camry....and there is nothing wrong with that ...the Camry is a fine automobile. for this discussion though it brings about the point that Lexus is still a young brand that fills its showrooms with re badged Toyota's. regardless which vehicle came first the RX or the Highlander...what's the difference they are both one and the same. Lexus's lion share of sales are from the RX and the ES. both of which are basically Toyota's. again not a bad thing but is this a luxury brand?
when i view luxury brands Lexus is in my mind more equal to Infiniti and Acura while MB, BMW, and Audi sit on a higher level. part of this is the fact that the German brands push their flagships to much higher levels than the Japanese. more HP, luxury, and intriguing design.
calling the Lexus "the thinking mans car" is stereotyping. are you saying that people who purchase Mercedes Benz's ...don't think?
for some reason i have never identified myself with an automobile to the point that i would feel better about myself if the companies balance sheet looked good. i either like the car or i don't!
here is a link to an article that reflects the
S classes dominance in the luxury segment.
http://www.germancarfans.com/news.cfm/newsid/2041117.007/mercedes- - /1.html
#7462 of 24723 Re: Ljflx [denaliinpa]
Feb 13, 2005 (4:49 pm)
... the last thing anyone should do is underestimate MB. not just 2 years ago people were ridiculing Schrempp for purchasing Chrysler. who's laughing now?
Who's laughing now ? Certainly not MB execs, with reduced pay checks and loss of image and, dare I say it, loss of the MB shine ?
Who's laughing now ? Certainly not share holders of DCX, if buying DCX means banking on the 300, and not the myriad of high-end MB automobiles that earned them their reputation.
Who's laughing now ? Certainly not the MB owners with electronic issues and having to deal with uncooperative MB dealerships and corporate personnel.
Who's laughing now ? Certainly NOT Schrempp, the CEO ! I don't see him gloating on the numbers coming out of DCX these days !!
But there is always hope to correct problems. If I were an MB exec, I'd certainly work to correct the ills that befall the brand, perceived or real, and work towards gaining customer confidence, and investor confidence to build back the reputation and put back on the glossy shine of owning a prestigious MB automobile.
That's what I'll do instead of making excuses and burying my head in the proverbial sand of denial ....
#7463 of 24723 Re: [denaliinpa]
Feb 13, 2005 (5:26 pm)
You still ignore the fact that the ES by parts content shares 25% commonality with a Camry. That does not make it the same car!! Try and back up your opinions with facts for a change.
I don't know where you get your info from, but the RX in no way is a Highlander. The RX debuted in 1998. Highlander came along a few years later. I don't see the resemblace sorry..The RX is at least twice the price of a Highlander..I've been in both and there isn't anything identical.
Even the autorags disagree with your assessment of Lexus..Why is it that they rank the LS higher than most of those brands? In the last C/D comparo, the LS won..It came in second to the Audi in another. If your "opinion" was correct, why do diehard performance fans like C/D put the LS against these cars in the same place?
What higher levels are you talking about? Electronics that don't work? Complicated interfaces that befuddle even Car and Driver? Seven Speed transimissions that have a 4% improvement on Fuel Economy? (Mind you even 911's don't have that!)
Have you noticed the correlation of the introduction of these systems with reduced reliability? JD Power has ranked Lexus No 1 for seven years running! The hybrid technology is more of a innovation than iDrive will ever be. Having just been through the car shopping experience, the Lexus had everything MB, Audi, and BMW did (and more), save the iDrive nonsense. Luxury? You obviously have never been in a LS430..It's cabin trumps anything save a Jaguar Vandenplas.
Design? What's so great about BMW's Bangle design? Audi is okay, and MB is nothing special.. Jaguar rightly holds the award for that...The only advantage a German car has over Lexus is Handling ability. (BMW) I don't see anything special about an Audi or MB...From my perspective, the 15K premium I was about to pay on the S430 was merely for the MB prestige and the 4 Matic.
I think calling the Lexus a "thinking man's car" is a fair label..Lexus owners look at the Objective statistics and make their decision. We examine things such as reliability, depreciation, safety, customer service surveys, etc to evalute our purchase..To a Lexus owner our time is money, we don't have the patience to deal with gimmicks laden cars nor do we relish the idea of dealing with arrogant dealers and suspect cars. Mind you a fair number of Lexus owners are former MB owners. Ever wonder why they switched?
#7464 of 24723 Re: [denaliinpa]
Feb 13, 2005 (5:49 pm)
when i view luxury brands Lexus is in my mind more equal to Infiniti and Acura while MB, BMW, and Audi sit on a higher level
Really ? And tell me who is the #1 LUXURY seller in the US market ? The answer ain't MB, BMW or Audi either. If Lexus is not a luxury car maker, then MB isn't either.
Bash Lexus all you like, its kicking the others you-know-what, at least in the NA market, and is poised to expand globally. Toyota is forecasting strong performances in the next 5 years, and all signs point to them outperforming their competition from here forward. Guess we'll see, won't we ?
Feb 13, 2005 (5:53 pm)
ok...the Camry and the ES have the same engine and drive train, same platform. what is so hard to understand? sitting in a vehicle does not tell the entire story.
I've driven many Lexus automobiles. their interior is easily more user friendly than the 7. when you compare the materials and the level of quality it is my opinion just not on the level of the German competition.
no matter how you cut it the fact that MB even offers 4 matic is a big plus. the breadth of MB's line up is so far beyond Lexus.
as for MB owners switching?? what does this mean? people try new brands out all of the time. I've owned MB, BMW, and currently and Audi. does that mean i will never drive another brand again? you take brand loyalty to a level that is counter to being a "thinking man".
when it comes to automobiles...higher end automobiles i am always amazed that when a person chooses a Lexus they let the statistics of others make the decision for them. why not just purchase a car you really like? all cars are manufactured very well today. to have to justify a purchase that has a bland design
because jdpowers says so.....is just not for me!
cars to me..... are just not appliances.