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High End Luxury Cars

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  • lenscaplenscap Posts: 854
    Two bits of news from Mercedes this week:

    1. They are eliminating free maintenance during the warranty period starting with 2005 models. The program was launched four years ago. Mercedes claims owners often got confused because normal wear and tear items still had to be paid for. Dealers will also start offering maintenance packages.

    2. All-wheel drive is being offered at no charge on 2005 S430 and S500 models to help boost sales before the redesign comes in early 2006. Although it is normally a $2,900 option, the S430's price has gone up by $1,050 for 2005, and the S500 by $1,200.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,661
    Maybe he bought a Lexus!

    Seriously - Let's hope he's OK. He's a young guy and the board's not the same without him.

    Tony the bad news is that Ivan looks also to be destined to hit the gulf or even the west coast of Florida as a category 4 or 5 storm late this weekend and will also ride up the eastern seaboard. Most of the rain has missed me to the west, north (4-7" in the NYC area) and east as it has come in off the atlantic. Be glad there haven't been any tornados as Frances has caused around 100 of them.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    I miss merc1 too. I think his internet access was only at work...one possibility is that his MCI manager caught on to his extracurricular acivities and put a stop to them.
  • maxhonda99maxhonda99 Posts: 1,289
    According to Automotive News website, every Lexus sedan is going to redone by Fall 2006. The short bit I read goes on to say they are going after BMW loyalists.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Spent a week in the Hamptons recently—been many years since. I forgot how much dough is out there. We are considering a summer home but the prices there are ridiculous. And to think of how we were intimidated by price spikes in the early 80s. Would have, could have, should have… the old battle cry of those who don't pull the trigger on judicious investment.

    Anyway, I couldn't help but think of all the conversations around here about Mercedes hitting the skids. You'd never know it out there. BMW and Lexus sedans were hard-to-find. Most of my BMW sightings were previous-generation 7s. Lexus SUVs and X5s were abundant but I hardly saw any LSs. Lots of Ss, SLs, CLK cabs, 911s, gorgeous vintage SLs and more than enough Ferraris. I remember plenty of Jags from yesteryear but didn't see many this time.

    Ljflx… caught Frankie Valli in concert in Westhampton one night. The old goat doesn't have the enduring panache of Jagger but it was worth it nonetheless. He did most of the songs I was weaned on but to my dismay he didn’t do "Marlena"… br-r-r-r-r-oop dupe doobie doop, doop dee doobie doo. He was beckoning people to sing along but the crowd was littered with reserved types who seemed to be above that sort of thing. But this boy and his goyle (wife) who grew up in Dion country were right on it trying to hit his high notes, voices cracking like drunken sailors. It seems he even brought the songs down a few keys because they'd probably have to cart him away in an ambulance if he tried to hit those original high notes.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,661
    Dawn is still my favorite along with Rag doll. Did you happpen to see him on the Sopranos in his brief stints as a mobster? I actually was cleaning up my basement and found my old LP's with the golden greatest hits album last week as well as every Beatle and Stones LP. It made me go out and buy a turntable over the weekend.

    Hey what's your read on the new 3 series and the new Lexus GS?

    I don't buy Lexus going after BMW. Why mess with the great success they've had. They will tune-up the GS and IS handling and sportiness and definitely improve car sales a lot (probably at some expense to BMW) but I don't see an image change to chase down BMW. Dumb business and I think what their intent is was misunderstood. By the way I don't like the new 3 series at all and wonder how anyone sees it as a lower Bangle effect. To me it's a shrunken 5 series and the crease (that's what it looks like to me) on the side looks cheap. Bangle must hate smooth even flowing cars and he must love the disjointed look. I do know a few people though that hated the old 7 series style and think the new one gives it the massive look that a big lux car needs. But the funny anecdote to that is these same people hate that same bulgy look on the 5 series. Go figure. Personally I think the 7 is beautiful up to the front passenger door and then all hell breaks loose. But in the rear view mirror it looks great.
  • Yes--found out after I just leased a 2005 S430. I got used to the Maintenance program with my 2000 E320 and assumed the program continued. Just didn't make sense that MB would discontinue this program.

    Also, the sales rep didn't mention about the 4matic no cost option. When I went back and asked him, he claimed that he didn't even know about this. I had to show him the MB USA website! Yeah, sure.
    Ricky
    Monrovia, California, USA
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    The GS is bulbous. I think the 3 styling is much better than the rest in the BMW line but is still deficient. If Lexus goes after BMW I hope it's with regard to ride, drive and handling. Heaven help us if they emulate styling. From the looks of the 06 GS I can see similarities to the 7 in girth. But I think it will be a marketing strategy more than anything else. I can understand people who like Lexus luxury not wanting association with BMW.

    There aren't too many 4 Seasons songs I don't like. If forced to pick I'd have to go with Working My Way Back to You. Frankie's favorite was Your Just Too Good To Be True which was his first song when he went out on his own.
  • 2002's "automobile magazine's Man of the Year" ......He's changed the look of the car but not the character. The skin of the car can be another design element or simply pulled taut and stretched around the cars proportions. Sculpted skin..........several years ahead BMW will look dynamically progressive and cars like the 7 and Z4 will appear more mainstream.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,661
    If that happens and others follow suit I'll buy my car at lease end. Someone on that magazine staff, or mabe all of them need psychiatric help - pronto. But I doubt you are right and I doubt BMW will stay with this style on their next redesign. Did Bangle do anything with the 1 class? I'd guess not as that is a good looking car and more classic BMW.

    designman - He does put a lot of emotion into that song and also "my eyes adored you" which is a great song and what I would have guessed was his favorite. I also would be hard pressed to find a Seasons song I didn't like. I also love Stay and even love the way Jackson Brown did it.
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    Like Merc1, I have been gone for quite a while (seemed I was not missed, which is cool....). Business trips have taken so much of my time. And to top it off, company now involved in a fresh M&A (our Bus-Dev guys are keeping us very busy and on our toes). Now will have even less time for indulging on Edmunds.

    Have seen so many MBs here in San Diego especially the high-end ones. Lots of SLs, CLs and CLKs. Not to mention countless 3s and 5s everywhere. Lexus is holding its own pretty well here too. But luxury cars/luxury SUVs/high-end sport cars are huge around here. Way too many nouveau rich guys and gals living here. We are a city defined by what we drive rather than what drives us ! At least thats being my experience in my 6 years living in this city.

    With so much talk of the 2006 S, has anyone sighted a 2006/2007 LS preview car anywhere ? Does anyone know when Lexus will start a roadshow for the new LS ?

    In all, there's not being much change here, which is a good thing. From time to time, as work lessens over the next few months, I'll stop in here and put in a word or two. Hope you all keep things civil as usual... wink wink... And best to Merc1 wherever he may be.
  • Looks like the XJ8 is going to be in the 60ish MSRP range. You say that you can't afford a 'bimmer or and Audi. Here's an idea. Project the total cost of ownership on the Jag and see what kind of value that it will be in an overall sense rather than just MSRP. Not knowing what attracts you to the Jaguar(style?) you may find that some other cars in the segment might offer you a lower cost of ownership, better quality, better performance, etc. In fact at www.intellichoice.com they rate the XJ8 as a "poor" overall value. The BMW 745Li is rated as "excellent" overall value.

    Personally, I'd take a Lexus or a even a 545 over the Jag in a heartbeat.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Oac... Ah-h-h some warm and fuzzies from my man Rambo. Actually I did miss you. With you and Merc on hiatus I was going to start pulling out old Ali-Frazier videos ;-) Good luck with your work.

    Livinbmw... Bangle as man of the year is dubious. I think Hitler was once Time magazine's man of the year, now he's in history's trash bin. If Bush got into body piercing and shaved his head he'd make man (person) of the year also. This is a bad, bad period in BMW history and I believe this will be reflected as such in the future.

    Ljflx... Wow, I think the 1-series is another freak of nature. However, I always say the smaller the car, the freakier it can be so by that axiom it may have worked. It's the big luxury cruisers that should be buttoned-down conservative. Hey, remember Freedomland? Saw the Seasons there!
  • Bangle and Hitler? Jesus...

    Interesting note.......Bangle's father worked for an aircraft engine manufacturer in Wisconsin that supplied the engines for the P-51 Mustangs that US pilots flew against the BMW Luftwaffe engines that were used by Hitler's pilots in WWII.

    Such a "bad period" in which they have surpassed Mercedes in world wide sales.... BMW sets the industry benchmark for both product development and marketing.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    If I were to have advised BMW, the one piece of advice I would have given them would be to shorten the engine development cycles.

    The rumored engines being released in the next few years, should have already been options.
  • I assume that you mean for US production as other engine upgrades have surfaced elsewhere..... the V8 is new with revolutionary valvetronic technology that others must now try to mimic. That's the engine first introduced in the new 7 and now available in the 6, 5 and X5.

    The 6 cylinders are probably where there could have been some more recent upgrades. Other makes have ntroduced engines that boast big HP's (in direct response to the segment dominant 3 sereies) but still nothing meets BMW's overall smoothness and performance in my book even if the HP doesn't appear on par with some others in the segment. The 3.0 is still the premier (ULTIMATE) inline 6 in the industry but an overdue upgrade would create a little buzz.

    Of course, the Formula 1 inspired V10 is right around the corner.....HOLD ON!!!
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Yep -- the description of it sounds awesome. But I would guess the price would be just as awesome.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,661
    I'll have to take a closer look at the 1-series but I didn't think it had that crazy BMW new look.

    Freedomland! We must be the same age. I went there a few times when I was real young. Wasn't that near the Whitestone or Throgs Neck bridge?
  • yes, it's "bangleized"
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