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High End Luxury Cars

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Comments

  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,663
    Couldn't agree with you more. It's also quite logical that the more expensive the car the older the demographic is likely to be in any car denomination that sells 10k cars or more a year. Many SL drivers I see are in their 50's and 60's who are now most probably empty nesters.

    BMWseller - tried to tell you the other day that people here would be hard pressed to take you seriously with that profile. Your put-down words serve to make it worse not better. Sales figures at this juncture are like the score of a tight baseball game in the 6th inning. They are not worthless but they are not worth much.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    The BMW #1 sales ranking you mention is artificially manufactured by lumping Mini into the BMW mix. Given that Mini is a separate brand/nameplate and runs only $17-20k, to be fair we would have to lump every Chrysler selling for $17k+ into the MB mix, and every Toyota selling for $17k+ into the Lexus mix, etc., etc. I rather doubt BMW would look so good then.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    "It's also quite logical that the more expensive the car the older the demographic is likely to be in any car denomination"...agreed...a little annecdote: my wife once remarked that the Ferrari drivers in town (and there are quite alot of them) seemed to all be balding.
  • bmwsellerbmwseller Posts: 200
    You like me, don't you? I can tell.

    Through sept. BMW has retailed 178,463 vehicles (NOT including mini). By the way, would you say that a mini is the equivalent of a neon? Most wouldn't. Mercedes 159,447 for the year.

    In addition, my e-mail address is posted so if you want to insult me, contact me directly as this forum is not make personal comments about the posters. Or, stop by some lot in the neighborhood and abuse some salesperson there. We all have thick skin. Maybe, the host should/could clarify this. I wouldn't get into any of my personal opinions about big fancy corporate types that arrange multi billion dollar buyouts.
  • Once again you are true to form...

    You ranked the top year to date sellers AS BMW, MERCEDES AND LEXUS.

    Using YOUR link here is the TRUTH of the matter.

    1) there is no Year to date figure given for Lexus
    2) TOTAL September sales for each are reported as follows:

       A) Lexus 18,944
       B) BMW 18,828
       c) Mercedes 17,234
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,663
    I didn't say anything negative about you. I said your profile in conjunction with negative put-down comments about your competing brands would not serve you well. I also said a few days back an Infiniti sales guy was so much more objective when he was on the board and as a result he was taken seriously. I made no comment about the mini or the neon as I have no interest whatsoever in either car. Sales figures are not final as yet so who cares at this point. More importantly - how are you going to sell your stats against that upcoming RX330 hybrid. 35mpg+ in an AWD suv with V-8 power. Sounds awesome to me. I hope Lexus production can meet the huge order demand that will surely exist for that vehicle.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    YTD Lexus has sold 186,009 units, the link is here: http://pressroom.toyota.com/photo_library/display_release.html?id- =20031001

    Lexus 186,009 YTD
    BMW 178,463 (per your post)
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Folks, that is enough with all of the personal comments.

    If you can't find a way to make your point without making snide comments at other posters, then you need to not post at all.

    Insulting others doesn't do anything to make your message more persuasive; the effect is just the opposite.

    I know that most of you are far better communicators than I'm seeing here lately.

    Let's all calm down, please.
  • bmwsellerbmwseller Posts: 200
    me wrong. You guys love it. I stand by my figures for the year to date and you would show contrary numbers if you could.

    My point here with the year to date figures is that even though the Bangle bashers, 5 haters and Z4 detractors are rampant on these boards the sales figures reflect a strong retail performance for the company across the board. Guys, I was the used car sales manager at a toyota-lexus franchise for a long time. I appreciate all sorts of vehicles. In fact, I can't get my wife to part with her RAV4 and I, personnaly prefer the performance and ride/drive experience of a BMW to a MB. I also think that MB has hurt their brand image on a corporate level.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Sales figures do not matter to what we are discussing here - we are here to talk about the things we admire about the marques, and the things we wish were different.

    Let's move on, please.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,663
    For the record I think BMW makes great cars. I don't think all that much of the looks of the 7 and I'll have to see the 5 better. But styles notwithstanding it would be ludicrous to say BMW is not an exceptional car maker. I was in a RAV once and found it to be harsh and noisy so I'll go on your side there.

    I don't think syswei or anyone else wants to show contrary figures - just accurate ones. And what's the difference anyway. In dollar sales MB wins. But profits is what counts. In that regard Toyota is the most profitable and powerful auto company out there right now.

    Why do you think that MB has hurt it's corporate image?
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Around my parts, MB still carries the most mainstream weight, and is most respected. BMW is probably second, followed by Lexus. I don't think the merger or anything else has really hurt MB's corporate image any. All that being what it is, if you want to have the "best", or impress (and you can't afford your Bentley), the Benz is the car.
  • sv7887sv7887 Posts: 351
    Hi all,
      We all need to keep in mind how young Lexus is. 14 yrs is pretty young for a car company.
     For all those Auto Historians..How long did it take for MB to carve it's niche out in the industry?

    From the beginning Lexus has played it safe. As a young upstart they simply took what the Best (MB) was doing and attempted to improve on it. If you remember their Marketing in 1989-90, you'll recognize the textbook job. Infiniti took a different route and got poor results. (Even though the Q was a fantastic cars.) Sometimes it's how you present things.

    Lexus' prime Marketing tool is the Reliability coupled with Service and High end electronics. They definitely do follow MB's lead in deciding what options belong in cars. Given their young age, it's hard to blame them for that...BUT, I think we're going to see Lexus start to establish themselves as something other than a Benz imitator. Models such as the RX330 (Hybrid) and Future GS are indications of this.

    Now that Toyota has really given Lexus their own identity, I hope it will translate into a distinctive Brand Identity. I'd love for them to embrace their initial designs of the LS and SC and apply them to the future designs. This upcoming Hybrid launch may indicate Lexus' niche will be in technology. Time will tell.

    SV
  • bluestar1bluestar1 Posts: 112
    Nice post.

    Yes, everyone that piles on the Lexus easily forgets how young Lexus really is in the luxury car market, compared to its competitiors. That is what makes it even more remarkable how far Lexus has come in so short a time.

    With the HPX concept, Lexus truly is branching out on its own identity. There is a real anxiety as to what the new GS will look like. That will truly be the beginning of the new-look Lexus. Like someone predicted here, that Lexus may overtake Mercedes in 15 years. I'd like to believe that, but only time will truly tell.
  • tasillotasillo Posts: 51
    I'm a little confused by the constant reference to Lexus "copying" Mercedes in their offerings. In my experience (again, having owned both), Lexus has not copied Mercedes (or BMW) in declining reliability, reduced customer satisfaction, poorer dealer experiences or accerated depreciation curves. Yes, the original LS400 looked a lot like the S-class, however Lexus failed to copy the Germans 50k + sticker.

    The most interesting part of this debate for me is how Lexus and Infiniti have been able to methodically move their mainstream product up in price and content, while the Europeans have been forced to hold or in some cases reduce pricing despite obvious advances in their products. Witness a 2004 E500 vs. an early 90's E400 or 420.

    The Germans engineer great cars. They've expanded their product offerings to touch most price points north of entry-level. They've become more accomodating to American requirements of options, colors and trim choices. But while the Japanese were smoking the world on reliability and owner satisfaction, the Germans seemed to be concentrating on playing catch-up with the electronics and "features", at the expense of their well earned reputation for engineering excellence. Not to confuse engineering with execution, but a well-engineered car still sucks when the NAV doesn't work, the reliability is less than stellar and the dealer is less than empathatic. I'm glad my BMW feels like it was carved from granite. But I'd also like the trip computer to work more often.

    Finally, just because I respect the Japanese manufacturers, don't think I'm not an enthusiaist. I'm a motorsports junkie, have raced both motorcycles and showroom stock and generally love anything that consumes gasoline! I just also respect great quality, customer satisfaction and constant improvement. When Mercedes and BMW match Lexus and Infiniti in the reliability and durability classifications, we can settle this debate once and for all.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,663
    Great post - again. I know I said that to you once before on another post a while ago.

    You also capture an essence that Merc1 misses badly, perhaps because he doesn't have a car in this grouping. That being that many of those who want to dismiss the reliability issues - which seem to be deepening for the Germans - comfort themselves by saying it is not related to the drivetrain or other mainstream automotive components. Wow. When and if the real automotive stuff starts to misfire it will be time for someone to turn the lights off for the last time and put up a "for sale" sign. When you pay this kind of money you want something as close to bulletproof as possible. Isn't that a true luxury that is a required component to match all the other great amenities of these fine cars. I think I'd be pretty pissed if I'm paying $86k or $1300 a month on a lease and my car is in the shop while my neighbor's kids' Honda Accord or Toyota Camry, at less than a third of that cost, works flawlessly all the time.

    I've read a lot about pre-collisions systems here lately and other new technologies and who is innovating first. That is ridiculous because competition requires the others to follow suit. Does anyone really think that the others won't follow Lexus once the hybrid technology hits? That is normal (and natural) business and the last time I looked auto manufacturing was a business. Many of these innovations will be governed by mastery of electronics in your car. That means the more important question is which one of the manufactures do you have trust in when the need arises which hopefully, in the case of pre-collision systems, is never. Well I'll put my money (and trust) on the Lexus systems working best as they have demonstrated great mastery of electronics while the Germans still have a lot to prove in that arena.
  • fennfenn Posts: 197
    An everyday driving and ownership experience is the essence to most of us. The earlier comment about the importance of a car's reliability and a positive ownership experience is a really important issue to a car owner. The fantasy crowd, who has never dealt with these issues can lust for the car of their dreams, but owning and dealing with a car on a long term basis is a total experience. It is real life.

    I must admit that I had a hard time giving up my Infiniti Q45 ownership experience. That experience was a pleasure. Bullet proof, no trouble, and a fresh free loaner waiting for me when ever I went in for service.

    I love my new XJR, and have not had it long enough to comment on the ownership experience. If it proves to be a problem, I will not look back on it favorably, no matter how nice the car feels.

    The people that I know who have jumped the Mercedes ship did not jump because they disliked their cars. They jumped ship as a result of the issues related to the ownership experience. I imagine that owning a Lexus can be much less stressful.

    A great performer is a nice thing, but it is not all about 0-60 times or slalom times with this class of luxury cars. Sure, I love to let my car loose on Mulholland Drive, or a open highway, but most of the time I am just stuck in traffic. Most folks who drive luxury marques want a balanced relationship with the car that they drive. They do not want frustration with the service and reliability. Or frustration with new-fangled complicated gadgets like BMW's I-drive.

    By the way, I have no axe to grind. In fact, I have never owned a Lexus, and I admit that I have periodically lusted for a Mercedes or Beemer from time to time.

    However, I think you will find far more former Mercedes owners driving Lexus' than you will Lexus owners switching to a Mercedes. It seems to be a matter of ownership satisfaction.

    I really enjoy hearing from the folks that have real-life experience with these cars. I consider "the source" when I read strong commentary here.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I'm done with the innovation discussion, because you're simply turning things around because you have nothing to back up your original statement. After NOT being able to tell me which innovations Mercedes came up with before Lexus, that Lexus so-called "perfected" you write:

    "Are you now saying that Lexus has NOT copied any of Mercedes Innovations? because if Lexus has they have made it better as evidenced by their dependability ratings."

    And I was merely asking you, since you say Lexus has done so much better with MB's innovations, what those "innovations are. If you're so sure of Lexus' accomplishments, you should be able to tell me what these items are.

    callmedrfill,

    Every criticism is a considered a bash now right? You're right its not like Lexus couldn't have those things, but they don't.

    lenscap,

    I'm sorry, but all of which you've stated I see an excuse for one reason:

    "Yes, they have "Toyota" spelled out on the trunk but that is a very misleading comment."

    The cars are still branded as Toyotas, just like I stated. You're first few statements contradict the end of your post. If there is no need for an upper-class nameplate in Japan because of the culture, then why would the go through the trouble of introducing "Lexus" in Japan. Also, there is quite a difference between Maybach/Mercedes and Toyota/Lexus. The Maybach started out as purpose built car for seperate nameplate, it wasn't an existing Mercedes rebadged for the purpose of selling it somewhere else. Nor was Maybach thought up at a board meeting, it's a legendary nameplate in it's own right.

    syswei,

    Haven't we been over this before about ABC? I said Mercedes did it before Lexus, I didn't claim that particular innovation was done first only by Mercedes-Benz. One such innovation would be SBC.

    ljflx,

    What you're missing is that reliability is either a) not as all encompasing as you'd like to believe it is for everybody. Obviously it isn't becasue why would anyone continue to buy German cars. Or b) the reliability of these cars isn't as bad as the survey clutchers would like to believe it is. I don't know how many times this has to be stated. People place different weight on different things. For you it's reliability, stereos and nav systems. For others its styling, performance, and design. When you can find one instance of Mercedes' safety technology not working as advertised, let me know. FYI, Mercedes' fall in the surveys has nothing to do with any of their safety technology, which they were pioneering before Toyota even had a clue about automotive safety. Mercedes keeps track of nearly every severe accident involving their cars in Germany for the sole purpose of advancing safety in their cars, they've done this since the 1950's. Even the most unreliable brands (per the all important surveys) don't have much in the way of problems when it comes to safety equipment.

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I respect the Japanese makes and admire their quality, but some of the things claimed here are so low on actual facts to the point where it makes it seem like I'm always bashing Lexus in pointing out the facts. I'm really not. The only thing I really ever bashed Lexus on is was their styling. I've never gone as far as to question a persons sense as to why they'd purchase brand a over brand b, like some have.

    Thought it seems that reliability is the counter for any and every criticism of Lexus, no matter what is is being "discussed". Then it gets personal on how you have to own a car to even speak about it. It's ridiculous.

    M
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Hey folks, we're splitting hairs here. These cars are the best of the best, and frankly, I have no personal ownership experience with any of the most mentioned ones. I'd probably be in heaven with whichever marque you all thought was the worst of the bunch. Does that bring a little perspective back?
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