Last post on May 01, 2013 at 3:12 PM
You are in the Sedans
What is this discussion about?
Lexus GS 430, Acura RL, BMW 5 Series, Volvo S80, Audi A6, Infiniti M35, Infiniti M45, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Cadillac STS, Sedan
Oct 07, 2005 (9:40 am)
The monthly sales figures posted here have often found Audi's A6 fighting for last place with Acura's RL.
Yet, Audi of America has [again] been able to take their stats and create blurbs such as:
"AUBURN HILLS, Mich. –– Audi of America, Inc. reported its best September sales month in history. With sales of 7,854 units, the German luxury brand’s numbers are up 34.6 % over September of 2004. Key drivers of this success are the A6 model range with 1,640 sales reported – up 211.2 % - and the A4 model line with 4,169 units, representing an increase of 19.7 %."
"• Audi worldwide sales to Sept. up by around 11.2 percent on last year
• Sales in Germany up to September up by 13.0 percent on last year
• USA in September 34.6 percent up on last year"
Regarding, total sales:
“We are certain to significantly exceed the sales target of 800,000 vehicles which we set ourselves for this year”, stated Ralph Weyler, Member of the Board for Marketing and Sales at AUDI AG."
Bla bla bla. . .etc etc etc.
Interestingly -- if you can believe what you can find here on the Internet, Audi and BMW for years and years have run neck and neck in terms of their "homeland" sales. Germans (and other Europeans) seem to, for example, buy more A6's than 5 series -- then the tables will turn and they will buy more 5's. But they run neck and neck there -- whereas here BMW sells what? Three times or more than three times as many 5's as Audi sells A6's?
Is this the case that we know something the Germans don't know or maybe they know something we don't? I've been to Germany about two dozen times since 1993 (and I just returned last week from Munich -- the home of BMW). Based on Taxis, Mercedes C and E (mostly E) seems to rule. But the number of A4's and especially A4 Avants would lead you to believe that Audi dominates (I don't know this to be a fact, it is just a "sense" based on the number of A4's and A3's that seem to be "everytwhere.")
Are our (US) dealers just crap?
I cannot explain this discrepancy.
Ideas from the erudite?
#4138 of 10338 Re: Bangle / Anti-Bangle and followers [jjacura]
Oct 07, 2005 (9:42 am)
"Look directly at the front of that Lexus LS Isn't it closer to the RL than the e60? "
That was my thought. There are some really strong resemblances among these three. There is a dark gray BMW 5-series here at work that I've parked my gray RL next to and it is surprising how similar the styling is. Both have that Bangle rear end that is so infamous.
#4139 of 10338 Re: [markcincinnati]
Oct 07, 2005 (9:55 am)
Okay, I know you asked for the erudite, but I'll respond anway.
I would guess that the (total baloney) reported sudden acceleration problems of (when, the early 80's?) damaged Audi's reputation at an economic point in time which magnified the effects. Remember the (total baloney and totally ridiculous) desire of up-and-comers to meet the Yuppie image? BMW and MB capitalized on that when Audi was still hurting. An analogy might be like spotting U of M 14 points and then trying to play catch up (hey, any time I can bring up Wolverine football, I will). BMW and MB then became the brand to own. Image may not be everything, but at that time, it certainly helped BMW and MB.
Even if Audi had gone into (early) Lexus mode for several years and wooed customers back with good price points on their good vehicles, they would have been seen as second tier during the boom-times.
#4140 of 10338 Re: [markcincinnati]
Oct 07, 2005 (10:44 am)
Ask for erudite, and even the ignorant (me) shall reply!
Docnukem's response seems rather informed and insightful to me. I really think the acceleration urban legend here put a cloud over Audi from which they only comparatively recently emerged. I know it sounds silly, but it makes sense.
Part deux here is that by and large the offerings (and the marketing) weren't all that performance-oriented over the years. The image was more SAABish and kind of techno-geek safety. That was then of course.
There is the VW image to carry as well. Silly link, it's true, but whereas Lexus is oft derided as a gussied Toyota, at least the Toyota is of sterling reputation (well deserved or not), the VW not so (1.8T possibly being a thorn?). I think many prospective Audi buyers are afraid they'll be recipients of VW's famed customer service as well. Again, perception is mostly the culprit I think. OTOH, I don't know that if queried about a long-term ownership prospect Audi would be the first recommendation off my tongue, even though the two front runners for my check come June are Audis.
I do think their pricing strategy now is holding them back. There is some wonderful product here and in the pipe, but none of it stacks up as being a particualarly great value. I understand the exchange rate sucks mightily, but gaining substantial market share usually requires some loss-leading I think.
#4141 of 10338 Re: Ugh, more Banglization rationalizations [docnukem]
Oct 07, 2005 (10:44 am)
You made me laugh out loud with that post -- thanks! I really meant narrow AND plump, as in narrow from the rear view, and plump (egg-like) from the side. But then again, you probably think that the 5 that I like so much looks weird, and that's perfectly fine. As far as the comment about the side seen most often -- that black streak flashing past you was me! Heh, heh, I amaze myself with my "virtual aggressive driving" in this forum -- I am a wimp on the road.
Oct 07, 2005 (10:48 am)
"Simply because you don't though does not mean they are a failure..."
I never said that nor even implied it. Not once.
Check your meter again, Rich. It's pretty obvious you do care. A whole lot.
#4143 of 10338 Re: . [rich545]
Oct 07, 2005 (10:48 am)
I think you are forgetting that all of the luxury car sales have increased dramatically over the last 10 years as people have and are willing to spend more money on LSs. Also, someone long time ago posted that most of the increase in the 7 sales came from Europe whereas in the States the demand has been flat to declining. I don't know if the second statement is true but the first sure is.
So, to really compare how well BMW has done compared to others, you need to compare the increase in sales of each comparable brand over the last 5 years.
I agree that all of us are entitled to our opinions about designs and driving and other characteristics of cars we chose to drive. Most of us will always come up with a bunch of good arguments to defend our choice. But I think you are kidding yourself and many others when you say that the 5 series is great and better looking than its previous generation. I grew up admiring German designs and always wanted to get a Bimmer or a MB, but the new 5 and 7 series designs are just a joke and look more like Japanese sedans than German. There is nothing bad about Japanese sedans, I own and love my new M45, but German cars should look like German cars. I am very confident that there were a lot more people who admired the classic old generation 5 design and hate the new look. Sure the sales are growing, but to me that's just due to the fact that people are willing to pay $10K more for the brand recognition and slightly better driving dynamics (compared to my M45 at least, to most other cars BMW is in fact superior) and nevermind the ugly minimalist interior design. I honestly can't see how anyone can reasonably defend the interiors of new BMWs. Let's just stick to superior driving dynamics.
#4144 of 10338 Re: . [wale_bate1]
Oct 07, 2005 (10:56 am)
Oops! I forgot to mention the impressive S4 Avant. A vehicle I would love to own if I lived in the USA but not in Canada. Why?
The pricing in Canada is outrageous for the S4 compared to US pricing. 48K US$ vs. 71K CDN$.
Audi pricing in the US is reasonable when you compare it to Canadian pricing!
Which brings me to the Infiniti! Value for the $$(even in Canadian $).
If the new generation G35(there are rumors of a wagon) maintains its MSRP below the BMW325i, I will be a future G35 owner!
#4145 of 10338 Re: [wale_bate1]
Oct 07, 2005 (10:57 am)
Ok, since "erudite" means "everybody with a marginal brain" I will pitch in my opinion on the Audis based on recent shopping experience (I ended up with a 530xi). I was NOT even aware of the old, probably false, spontaneous acceleration problem, and I would NOT have cared about a 20 year problem even if I was aware of it.
There is an Audi dealership right around the corner from where I work, and I spent a few hours there looking at a brand new A6. Here's why I was turned off:
- Insipid, bland, exterior styling.
- The new corporate gaping-mouth grille to add to the bland styling.
- Inferior handling and feel compared to the 5 and M.
- No manual transmission offered.
I guess the biggest issue with me is that I just think that the A6 is a "no-op" from an exterior looks standpoint -- does nothing for me, don't like it or hate it. Just a big clean slab of a car. I like the new A4s more. Walking up to it I did not feel any of the thrill I get walking up to my 530xi. So that was it -- nothing to do with eons old acceleration problems.
#4146 of 10338 Re: . [wale_bate1]
Oct 07, 2005 (11:04 am)
Sorry, you said "a disappointment". Again, they may be to you, but to others they are not. You're right, having never met me you have a better idea of what "my meter" is doing than I do. I just care when people assume things without looking into them, and when they think that their opinions should be shared by everyone. Whether or not you like the E60 is irrelevant to me. What is relevent is that you're saying that BMW has reigned Bangle in which it clearly hasn't.