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High Performance Luxury Sedans

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Comments

  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Well thats three German stylistic misses in the recent times:

    2002 7-Series
    2003 CLK
    2004 5-Series

    I never, ever thought this would happen, but Mercedes has actually made a car whose looks I'm not crazy about, the CLK! BMW better cool it with this crap they're doing. Thank god the 3-series doesn't go under the knife until 2005.

    M
  • chavis10chavis10 Posts: 166
    I don't get it, most of MB models seem to be looking better. What happended with the CLK? The pillar less roof doesn't work on a smaller car. The new E looks way better than the old one and even the freshened S and CL look better. The clear lenses for the lights on the S made a world of difference. And those quad pipes on the AMG models look great. The rims are hot too. I dont even need to comment on the CL, the best looking car money can buy.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Well they tried to create a smaller version of the CL and it didn't work. Going pillarless was a brilliant idea, but the whole car just didn't come off right. I've figured out whats wrong with the CLK, it slopes down way too low from the a-pillar foward, and it's doors tuck too far under the mirrors at the a-pillar. The car needs higher more definitive lines from the side from the a-pillar foward. Mercedes-Benz needs to hire Bruno Sacco back. I just hope they get the CLE right next year.

    M
  • chavis10chavis10 Posts: 166
    You know, that's exactly right. I checked out the picture and completely agree. One question, what's the "CLE???"
  • paulchiupaulchiu Posts: 378
    The latest R&T has the E55 on top, then Audi, next M5, with the Jag finishing in the familiar rear position.

    So, for those of you locked on the E55, buy the issue. Nice photos; as usual.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Thats two wins for the E55. Yes!

    chavis10,

    The CLE is a 4-door coupe based on the E-Class. It will be shown in concept form at Frankfurt this fall. It's supposed to slot in between the E and S-Classes. It's rumored to be a stunning looking car.

    M
  • paulchiupaulchiu Posts: 378
    Yes, don't confuse the CLE with the CLIE from Sony!
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    The E55 starts at $76,200. Nicely done around 81K or so.

    M
  • paulchiupaulchiu Posts: 378
    Must be the strong Euro currency! It was supposed to be 72 a few months ago....
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Well you know those were just estimates you can't ever really go by those, especially when talking about a 70k+ car.

    M
  • paulchiupaulchiu Posts: 378
    Just went to the MB site. With 30K down and 4% financing for 36 months. I can pay less (per month) than my current 2001 S500 lease. $1379 vs $1428. Not too bad.

    I was confused about the rear and side blinds offered in both the factory and accessories sections; at different prices too. What! no wood steering wheel option ?

    Lastly, does the bi-color seats work with this car? Especially for a middle aged man with kid?
  • paulchiupaulchiu Posts: 378
    $5K seems to be the typical markup now on the E55, over the MSRP. Deliveries in 5 weeks here in the New York area.
  • aki86aki86 Posts: 15
    I think the two-tone seats would work. I like how they look, especially the blue/black. I'm big on style and I usually like to go with something that's not too ordinary, like the seats.
  • mitrismitris Posts: 14
    I was going to buy a new 330Xi but then saw a used M5 that they have on the lot. I believe it's a 2001 with about 30k on it. (I know there's probably a big difference between a 00,01,02 I'm just pretty sure it's an 01 but but not 100%) They are asking 57K for it...I'm just starting my research but is there anything that anyone would say off the top that should steer me away from this. I'm almost afraid to drive it, which I'm thinking about doing today, because I know that I'm going to love it...
  • pablo_lpablo_l Posts: 491
    I agree with the gentleman that stated the CL is MB's best car right now. Mind you, from a US perspective I think the CL500 is plenty, and anything above it superfluous, for no amount of horsepower will make this an uncivilized car. Get a Viper if that's what you're after. That's one aspect of the new line of super-sedans I don't quite get: they're so domesticated that they feel somewhat soft. I recently drove a new E55 in Germany, and while very impressed, it just feels, well, soft. I truly struggle to feel the difference between the E55 and the E500, because the performance is so seamless and computer controlled. I expect the same thing to happen to the M5, unfortunately, since BMW has screwed up with every single follow-up to their stellar 2-year-ago line-up. BMW is bloating up their cars, they are getting bigger and softer, and it simply reduces the character. Major identity crisis. At least softness was always a MB character trait.

    Personally, some might remember I used to post to this forum as a Jag XKR owner. I just noticed the car was projecting the wrong image given the tech downturn, and felt uncomfortable with it. Trading down has been a big trend around me... Think about such issues when you fork down the money for these cars. Now my ostentatiousness is reduced to weekends, as I got myself an early 90s Rolls Corniche for show, and drive a $40k car or the motorccycle on an everyday basis to tone down the image. I do miss the XJR regularly, though. I do absolutely not like the new Jag XJR - the extra dimensions and especially the extra height have eliminated the appeal it used to have for me. The British quirkiness is gone. As to the others, the M5 still strikes me as not designed for California roads and driving patterns, the MB product line leaves me thinking that the CL500 and the E500 are the nicest choices (I find the new SL horrible looking, cheapened by 70s muscle car overstyled elements), the Audi product line leaves me also looking towards the lesser engined product options, and the day I have to not give a damn about the image I project in a professional environment, I'd get myself the new Bentley Continental GT. Or a used classic Continental. Increasingly, I am left feeling that the somewhat older cars have far more character than the over-computerized newer products. A horrible thing to say given the fact I do work in high tech, but hey...
  • aki86aki86 Posts: 15
    I don't think going for a CL55 of 600 would be overkill. It simply depends on what you want. If you want pure performance, then yes, a viper would be better. If you want performance, style, and comfort, a CL600 might be just what someone is looking for.

    I think the new SL is beautiful, but that's just my opinion and I can't criticize you for yours.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Interesting...While I don't think the SL is horrible looking I do think it could stand to be cleaned up some, especially it's sides. On a different note I took my weekly stroll on the MB lot, and they have a Tectite Grey/Charcoal CL55 sitting out front. WOW!

    M
  • pablo_lpablo_l Posts: 491
    The thing is that the "higher" variants don't *feel* like they are that much more powerful given computer controls. I am the last one to say irrationality is not a factor, don' get me wrong, and everybody suit him/herself and have fun with their choice. I have a good acquaintance with the CL600, and I'd personally pick the CL500 every time - the engine note just seems more special, the 12-cyl sounds just like a smooth little BMW 6-pot. Never mind that my friend's CL600 has an abysmal reliability record, utterly plagued my electrical system gremlins (to the point where I don't drive with him anywhere in his car these days, because we have been stranded 3 times already, and I was late for one important business appointment because of that, which I loathe).

    As to the new SL - too many lines and creases, and the opening on the side are just wannabe classic Gullwing without the class, I think. Overdesigned. I prefer MBs with more subdued and clinical lines, that's where their historical elegance comes from. There's not one single MB classic that has as many "character lines" as the SL has.

    I saw some picture about Audi's oncoming "shield grille", and fear that here's another German brand that's going badly astray with its design direction. I just don't see where the problem with continuity is - if a shape works, keep it, that's what makes a classic in the end. This "got to make the new car look different from the old" is the type of mentality that cheapens designs, because it's blatantly designed to get people to buy the newest one asap, and embarass them about being seen in the old model. That does not work with luxury brands - identity and continuity are the traditional key, and I am surprised to see the German car brands have forgotten it. They are opening the window of opportunity for competitors, and it will hurt them. Wait and see.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    "As to the new SL - too many lines and creases, and the opening on the side are just wannabe
     classic Gullwing without the class, I think. Overdesigned. I prefer MBs with more subdued and
     clinical lines, that's where their historical elegance comes from. There's not one single MB classic that has as many "character lines" as the SL has. "

    Exactly. I couldn't agree more. Every other current Mercedes is much "cleaner" in design.

    M
  • paulchiupaulchiu Posts: 378
    Don't like 'soft' Pablo, go try out the Cayenne Turbo. While no 4.5s from 0-60 like the E55; it'll do 5.6 from 0-62, and it is much more menancing! Imagine driving one on the Autobahn at 150mph+ and getting behind a regular super-car.
  • pablo_lpablo_l Posts: 491
    Well, the Cayenne is something else entirely. I have no driving experience whatsoever in one, nor do I know anyone that has or is about to have one (the $70k+ car acquisition curve has slowed down a lot among people I know). It seems a wonderfully irrational proposition, even though I can imagine Porsche purists would like to gag... heck, don't forget that building Panzers in WW2 is prt of the Porsche legacy, pure sporting background it's not! Porsche should offer the cayenne in Afrika Korps sand yellow to appease those purists. :-)
  • paulchiupaulchiu Posts: 378
    That's a great point; as Porsche is only offering conservative 'saloon' colors currently. No hot yellow or racing reds. I would have order a yellow Turbo; but brilliant silver?
  • msisengmsiseng Posts: 369
    Read your link, Chavis10. The V-8 pushing 400 hp on the Mercedes..whoa! Now that will be a car to drive if Chrysler does not manage to ruin it!

    It will be nice to see what Jaguar offers to compete.
  • kkopskkops Posts: 14
    Is anyone aware of a production or timing for an E55 4 matic model?

    Thanks
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    With that kind of power I seriously doubt, even before the E55 4Matic was only sold in Germany.

    M
  • kkopskkops Posts: 14
    Merc1,

    Thanks for the input. It's a shame, but living in central NJ, it is difficult to purchase a vehicle that works for 3 seasons and is then garaged. the e430 4matic I have works like a charm but really want some more power like the E55. Do you believe that Renttech could be a viable alternative. They claim increases in BHP from 285 to 400.

    thanks.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Yes...Renntech will build whatever you want as long as you bring the $$. I'm sure they have an upgrade packaged for the E430 4Matic....because AMG did sell a 4Matic version of the previous E55. The parts for such an upgrade should be readily available.

    M
  • kkopskkops Posts: 14
    Merc1

    I was wondering if you or anyone has had any experience with Renntech or Brabus or any other upgrade shop and any comments other than location (West Coast vs East Coast) that you could share with me regarding the experience you had.

    Thanks

    Kevin
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I haven't had any firsthand experience with the tuner shops. You might want to present that question on the News and Views side of the house. Specifically ask the host over there, Mr Shiftright. There are some MB guys on here that might know, v12power, mbnut, mbdriver, and some others. They usually are on the E-Class board or in various News and Views topics.

    The only Brabus shops I know of are in just those places (Cali & Florida) What about a 2004 E500 4Matic?

    M
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