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High End Luxury Cars

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  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,687
    For me and my family adequate space is part of the luxury equation in family sedans. That's why I referenced myself in the earlier post. We are all different. The bible here is one's preferences not what others say their preferences are.
  • KDS

    Doesn't the s65 have lot of room up front in the seats it does have?
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    He must be talking about the SL65 roadster. Mercedes, the Sultans of Torque, have this one at 738 lb-ft at a fat 2000-4000 RPM and it does a 4.2 sec 0-60. How's that for low-end torque? These guys are incredible. Actually, I would have figured it faster and it probably is since they measured the E55 faster than the Mercedes claim. The new M5 will be a high-speed track car but these Mercedes are point and shoot street monsters. Think of it, for an extra 100 grand you get a car that's 3 tenths of a second faster than the E55. Step on the pedal and you fly to the moon, bang zoom. No problem, where's my checkbook.
  • designman:

    I was just looking at the SLR...Am I the only person here who thinks it is really ugly? both front and rear.

    I am pretty much a Lexus guy when it is sedans but I don't think I am biased when it comes to sports cars.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Yeah I kind of agree Michael. It has some things working for it but it’s overcooked art deco and I see a platypus when staring into the mug. And the interior is on the cheesy side. I think they definitely improved the SLK though.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Nah, platypus is not right, it's more like a baboon. That's not it either. I can picture the animal but just can't think of the name. Either way it looks beady-eyed and cross-eyed too. Did I say it has some things working for it?
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Yes sir, I’m convinced the Proboscis Monkey was the motif for the SLR. Actually, it does have something going for it. Know why? Because it’s funky… f-f-f-f-funky lahk a monkey!!!

    ;-)

    image
  • warthogwarthog Posts: 216
    By Jove, I believe you have it! But I bet the monkey out-corners the Benz.
  • I would rather clean up after the Benz!

    :-)
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,141
    For some reason, it looks better on the new SLK350... Is it less radical?

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  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    So how come the Benz costs so much more than the monkey?
  • 'Luxury has little to do with room, else the S65 AMG would not be considered a luxury vehicle, due to limited room and lack of two seats.'

    Its all in peoples minds. Why would someone pay more for a Base ES 330 than they would for a fully loaded Camry and its the same car anyways.... or more for a Lexus LX 470 than a Loaded Land Cruiser?
    image
    image

    Its all in the mind, the letter L with a circle around it vs, the T with a circle around it....
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,141
    LX470 is the Land Cruiser..

    GX470 is the 4-Runner..

    I agree with the point of the post, though.

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  • Thanks kyfdx GX 470 is a Land Cruiser II Prado, not the 4 Runner

    image
    image

    See, this is the 3rd world's super SUV.
  • warthogwarthog Posts: 216
    "See, this is the 3rd world's super SUV."

    Is the .50-cal. mount a factory option or after-market?
  • lenscaplenscap Posts: 854
    mbukukanyau - The ES 330 and Camry are not the same car, they are built on the same platform. There is a big difference. I have an ES and feel I got a lot more than a loaded Camry offered. Some reasons I liked the ES better: Nicer styling, HID lights, loaner cars, far better dealer service, better radio (ML), nicer gauges, real wood, gated shifter, rear sunshade, etc. I could go on, but that should give you a feel for why I bought the ES.
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    This is a forum for "High End Luxury..." don't know what the Camry or the Prado II are doing here, but I digress...

    Ljflx: I have to agree with you on your criteria for "luxury" in a car or truck. Clearly, your analogy of a 3000-sf versus a 5/6,000-sf home drives home the point. Something doesn't add up wrt MBs. And here it is: Why is it that MBs have so many low end sherpa-like models (200, 220, 230, 240, 280, 300, 320, .... you get the point) littering all over Europe and they can be considered a pure luxury player in the N/A market ?? Hasn't any MB owner ever being to Europe to see their counterparts over the Atlantic ??? I was just in Munich and Frankfurt this past week, and the point continues to baffle me. I'll never consider MB a luxury car maker ever. They are simply a mass-market car producer, period. Lexus, Acura, Jaguar, and to a lesser extent, BMW, OTOH, are clearly luxury car/truck makers.

    BTW, why not add another variable to the definition of a "Luxury car" ? How about COST ? I cann't imagine a V6-powered car selling for $100K ? Whereas, a car at this price point can definitely be considered a luxury vehicle.... whatever that means...

    I'll continue my hibernation and pop in here-and-there when time, work and increased family responsibilities permits.

    Where the heck is Merc1 ????????????
  • pablo_lpablo_l Posts: 491
    > ... I'll never consider MB a luxury car maker
    > ever. They are simply a mass-market car
    > producer, period. Lexus, Acura, Jaguar, and to
    > a lesser extent, BMW, OTOH, are clearly luxury
    > car/truck makers.

    That doesn't make any sense, you are using a blatant double standard there. You obviously have not checked the other manufacturer's offerings in Europe. Offering smaller displacement engines is key in models such as MB's C, BMW's 3, Lexus I and Jaguar X series. They all have <2000cc fuel engines and diesel engines in the line-up. Correction: Lexus doesn't have a diesel engine (but they do supposedly sell the IS200 according to www.lexus.de, even though I've never seen one in Europe), and they admit that's their huge Achilles heel in Europe. They're partnering with some French manufacturer for diesel engine design, I think.

    In any case, didn't you see BMW's new 1 series driving around? Which competes against VW's Golff? And they're more legitimate than Mercedes? Makes no sense.

    As to Accura and Lexus, they're irrelevant in Europe. Their success is US based, so based in global perception I truly don't think they even remotely have the brand cachee that MB, BMW or Jaguar have. They do build phenomenal cars, though, and it is just a matter of time until they get their apporach to the European market as "rigt" as they did in the US. But they'll need small engines and diesel to be successful there, and also a premium small car that builds brand desirability with young buyers by being cooler than other cars in the small segment, and is priced a good $4k over the average small car. Makes them quite profitable ventures.

    MB is a luxury car makes, no doubt about that. Claiming otherwise is nonsensical. They do not build luxury cars exclusively, though. Nor do most other brands, exotics excluded.

    As to the 6 vs 8 pot discussion, I absolutely disagree with the perception that a true luxury car needs to have a 8 pot engine. First of all, inline 6s are engines with a better balance than a V8 from an engineering point of view, and can be made to run smoother. Jaguar's inline 6, for one, was smoother than the criticially acclaimed V8 that replaced it due to the needs of the US market. A V8 sounds more hoarse and less turbine-like than a I6 when revved hard. Second of all, unbeknownst to most US buyers the MB S class, the BMW 7 series and the Jag XJ are sold with 6 pots and diesel engines in Europe. Identical spec otherwise. Doesn't make them entry level cars at all.
  • bwiabwia Boston Posts: 1,234
    I test drove the RL last Saturday and if it is not a high-end luxury sedan then it certainly demands consideration.

    First, the price. At $50K MRSP it is knocking on the door of high priced luxury cars, (ie. LS430, E500, Q45).

    Second, interior look and feel. The driver and passenger seats, fit like a Hong Kong tailored suit. The leather is soft and supple, and the dash is well laid out. Everything is in the right place just like when my grandmother would set the table for a big dinner.

    Third, the handling is superb. On twisty roads the SH-AWD suspension system surpasses the hype. Go ahead push it around a sharp corner (even with your eyes closed) and the car remains composed. Ah....this is heaven. One down side though, the engine feels a little underpowered. But for the driving demographics for this car it has more power than most can handle. Reported 0-60 times is 6.5 seconds, but it felt more like 8 seconds.

    Outside impressions, very Accord derivative and overall length is three inches shorter than the 04 RL. But inside, the space and comfort has a big car feel, certainly not as tight as the XJR or A6.

    Value for the money? You decide. But at $50K I think it is overpriced, then again the car is in such great demand that many will pay that price without blinking an eye.
  • bwia:

    The LS430 costs 5,000 more and you get a lot more car with a V-8...The only production car that satisifies California Emissions standards without modification.

    Give an LS a test drive and then let us know what you think
  • footiefootie Posts: 636
    We've got a 1990 Acura Legend Coupe L sitting in the garage. I can't figure out just what luxury touches it was missing that made it fall "far short" of the brands we normally talk about here?

    I went looking for something comparable from the MB carline back then. Maybe the 300CE Coupe? It's not any more luxurious inside than the Legend except for the plastic looking wood trim on the dash here and there. That is more than offset by the wonderful leather in the Legend, the self-presenting seat belts, and a much more complete instrument cluster.

    And of course, our Legend has an excellent Honda 2.7 Liter V6 with 160 hp and 162 ftlb of torque coupled to a 4sp auto. It is very spirited performance wise, even though it weighs almost 4300 pounds (about 800 more than the 300CE ). The chassis stiffness is high and it's road manners are fluid and refined.

    When I look at the early 300's, the fit and finish isn't superior to the Acura - MB was already heading into it's terrible 90's quality phase.

    Of course, the Mercedes had a 'luxury price' - the 300ce was $57K -- more that 2x the fully equipped Legend L coupe with leather.

    Just my standard beef here. Price doesn't make a car a luxury car in anyone's minds but the sales guys and their fish.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,141
    umm.. not going to disagree with any of that, except...

    No way that Acura weighs 4300 pounds..

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  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,141
    '90 Acura Legend Coupe..

    Curb weight: 3170 Lbs.

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  • I am actually cross-shopping an E-500 and a Honda Odyssey Touring minivan. The van ($38.8) has voice-activated navigation and 9" DVD, power doors, pedals, and rear hatch. So far, I haven't been able to find any good comparison articles. image
  • Has anybody had an intermittent buzzing from the speakers of a 2003 745i. I have had this car in the shop twice with at first a constant and now an intermittent buzzing in the left sided speakers even when the radio is off. First time a software upgrade and replace a part. Second time replace amplifier and reprogram. Now they suggest I just watch it for a while. Thanks
  • I suggest a can of Raid.

    Sorry, I couldn't resist.
  • footiefootie Posts: 636
    You are all right about the weight. Sorry, I don't know where I got that number!

    footie
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,687
    footie - I'm comparing top end Acura (Legend before, RL now) to the S-class, LS430, 7-series, A8 etc. That's where it falls short. Most certainly it can compare and compete with the E, GS, 5-series etc. I had 91 and 93 Legends (wasn't the Legend bigger body new style a 91 model and before that it was the smaller boxier car?) and loved them both. Exceptionally reliable cars. Like my 1995 LS430, the 93 Legend I had was eventually sold to a friend who put more than 250K trouble free miles on it before "totalling" it. My 95 LS400 which is in the hands of another friend (both of these guys are travelling sales people) will reach 300K miles by year end (mainly highway) and is still a great car. The Japanese know how to build them - that's for sure.
  • Thanks
    Unfortunately that may be the best we can do. Sure is cheaper than service costs.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    "I'm comparing top end Acura (Legend before, RL now) to the S-class, LS430, 7-series, A8 etc. That's where it falls short."

    If power is a priority then sure it falls short. But it's right up there with luxury amenities. Pure luxury starts with plush, cushy, quiet, rife with features. On the high end throw in enough room for people who've had one Sicilian slice too many. It's there and power is adequate. It gets the short end of the stick because we are in the throes of a power war and consciousness.

    Keep an eye on this new AWD system. AWD is nothing new but regardless it is still in it's infancy. What will distinguish it in the future is performance. The real legacy of electronics in cars is performance-enhancing electronics. In the animal kingdom four-legged creatures outperform their two-legged counterparts by a wide margin. The task for engineers is to figure out how to efficiently apply and optimize power to four wheels in a similar manner, a fairly complex collaboration among engineering disciplines and one which does not lend itself to immediacy. But when people start to notice AWD in warm climates you'll know it has really arrived. The RL could be the first of significant steps forward in this area. This is an innovative move.

    As much as I consider the RL a high end luxury car, I will admit wondering why Acura doesn't answer the V8 call just on the principle of demand which I believe starts with bandwagon luxury buyers buying into the beating the RL relentlessly takes on this issue in the press. Too much attention is paid to categories. But it could behoove them financially if they just acquiesce, losing the tweener image in the process and beating the "big boys" at their own game. They certainly appear have the ability and marketing savvy but with the RL and NSX you have to scratch your head at times.
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