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Lexus, Toyota, Car Buying
#1 of 79 How Much Is Brand Legacy Worth To You?
Dec 05, 2010 (8:34 am)
Zero, 5%, 10%. 25%? Would you pay even $1 more for, say, the 3-pointed star, assuming, hypothetically, equality or comparability between a Mercedes and another car? It's a choice, not a crime, to pay more for status. Are you reluctant to admit, even to yourself, that status has a role in what you drive?
Alfred Sloan's marketing genius was largely responsible for GM's enormous success in the'30s, '40s, and '50s, and was based on people's desire to move up, and to flaunt their success. Other people don't assign much value to status, or are even repelled by the notion of paying for status. Some seek annonymity.
What are your thoughts on this? Did you, for example, buy a Lexus instead of a Toyota, mainly because of the impression you'd make on others, justifying it by, "it wouldn't look right for a person in my profession, or from my neighborhood, to drive a Toyota/Honda/Chevy?" Or, how about the person who has little interest in performance, can't drive worth a darn, and isn't a car nut, who drives a Corvette or a BMW M series? Far fetched? Uncommon, maybe, but they're out there.
Do you know someone for whom status is very important, or the opposite?
#2 of 79 Re: How Much Is Brand Legacy Worth To You? [hpmctorque]
Dec 05, 2010 (8:58 am)
There are infinite amounts of people in my area who aren't really into cars or driving, but will pay more for a nice badge. This is how most 3ers/C/IS/GS and so on get leased. From what I can tell, the guy in my building who has a new M3 isn't a car guy - you don't drive something like that with atrocious music blaring out of it at all times...and there are many out there like him.
I like MB for many reasons. I like how they drive, I like the heritage, I generally like the styling, I like where they come from, and I haven't had any really bad experiences with one.
#3 of 79 Re: How Much Is Brand Legacy Worth To You? [hpmctorque]
by Stever@Edmunds HOST
Dec 05, 2010 (3:31 pm)
Buying a brand name product is important for many people because the brand generally indicates a certain level of quality across the product line. If you go to any McDonalds, you pretty much know what to expect. They've gone to great lengths to protect that brand legacy. Chez Ritz doesn't offer to-go food in doggie bags so unless you namedrop, people won't know that you just went there for dinner.
Cars, on the other hand, wear brands and some people will be more impressed to see that McDonalds bag in a Mercedes than in a Hyundai. Even if the Genesis is equal to the E Class for some drivers.
Can't say that I know anyone like that though. My in-laws had a BMW they liked but because of the paucity of mechanics where they moved, they traded it for a Buick. It just worked better for them.
Calvin sure sells a lot of bumper stickers though.
#4 of 79 Re: How Much Is Brand Legacy Worth To You? [hpmctorque]
Dec 05, 2010 (3:56 pm)
No question about it....some buy just to "show off" the brand they drive. I can't count how many BMW and Benz drivers I have seen that can't afford to maintain their ride. For them, its all about getting that monthly payment as low as possible. The cost of maintenance never enters the purchasing equasion...
But, I have seen that in home sales as well. Big house with sheets hung in the windows because they can't afford curtains....
Here's a twist for you, though.
How about those who avoid a brand, instead of insisting on it?
I'm guilty of that. Over the years, I have had horrible luck with LG products, from cell-phones to TV's and appliances.
I fully understand that LG could not be in business today if everyone had the same experiences I have had, so they must make decent hardware. However, not for me... I refuse to take another chance on their products.
That attitude may change one day, but that day isn't here yet.
No doubt that attitude is widespread in the car world as well...How many times does one have to be "bitten" before saying they've had enough?
Those are my thoughts on the subject...
#5 of 79 Quest For Status
Dec 05, 2010 (8:58 pm)
The quest for status doesn't have to be as pronounced as a Chevy versus a Cadillac. While there are signs that cars, once a very important single measure of the status of the owner, has been losing importance. Cars define the person to a lesser extent than they did back in the day. Nevertheless, many still rely on cars to make the statement they want to convey to the outside world.
Hopefully, some people buy a certain model because they like something about it, be it its performance, reliability, styling, packaging, features, the brand's country of origin, or whatever.
Dec 06, 2010 (9:51 am)
in a Taurus SHO is Eco boost in a Lincoln so I'll drive the Taurus. Legacy? Meh!
#7 of 79 Re: How Much Is Brand Legacy Worth To You? [fintail]
Dec 06, 2010 (9:53 am)
The way you feel about M-B pretty much describes my feelings for Cadillac and Buick.
#8 of 79 Re: How Much Is Brand Legacy Worth To You? [lemko]
Dec 06, 2010 (10:08 am)
I'll add to that I like driving behind a hood with the three pointed star at the end, feels nice
#9 of 79 Re: How Much Is Brand Legacy Worth To You? [fintail]
Dec 06, 2010 (12:53 pm)
Same here with a wreath & crest or tri-shield!
#10 of 79 I'm going to be contrarian
Dec 07, 2010 (6:56 am)
...and say that the badge itself is a worthless piece of plastic. Its sole use is as a shorthand for the amount of effort (or lack of) that a company puts into its products.