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High End Luxury Cars

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  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Comes down to your preferences. A new car always feels better but the most economical route is to keep the car until it rots into the ground assuming it has been maintained all along. I had a Celica for 14 years, 150K and the engine ran like a top. The only reason I gave it up was rust and torn seats. You are only averaging 7-8K miles a year which means the car should get you many more years. However I think you should find a good honest local wrench without having to depend on dealer service.
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    SV: If your time is valuable, as I suspect it is, I'll get the ES rather than the XJ8, althought the latter is probably a better car. The new ES330 will give you 10+ years of worry-free life, something that the XJ8 may not be able to do. But if your preference is for more fun in driving, then by all means get the Jag. For my money, I'd get the ES330. The '92 LS needs to retire !!!
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,687
    Sv- if you're used to an LS, the ES may not do it for you and will be outdated berfore too much longer as a new one is due in 2007 from what I understand. I rode in a friends 97 LS the other day and it had a far more more luxurious feel and ride than the 2004 ES I got as a loaner a while back. Here's a thought - why not try out the true newer Lexus engineering in the GS - either the GS3 or GS4. The GS 430 I drove was phenomenal (luxury, handling, ride and quality of materials and build) and 99% of drivers on the road are not going to nitpick about small handling differential to say - a 5-series or an Infiniti M. Great car that is still uppercrust Lexus. Besides it's for you right - as you, just like me lost complete control of the new LS to your wife.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    The IS needed to soften up a bit in order to survive. From what I understand, in the October C&D, The IS350 came in second place just one point behind the 330i, and cleaned up on the rest of the class. It also apparently sprinted to 60 mph in something like 5.1 seconds, faster than everybody else by quite a bit.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I would not get either the ES330 or the XJ8. The ES is Boring McBlandville, and its due for replacement.

    As a Jaguar owner since '98 and a long time fan of the company, I do not recommend the previous XJ. Its a '95 design (when it was XJ6). It got the V-8 in '98, but otherwise its the same car up through '03. Its lacking in safety features, handling, space, etc. etc. compared to every other car in the class. Also, I think you're going to be in for a shock as to how much time and money is involved in maintaining a Jag. From 25K to 50K miles, my '98 XK8 was in the shop for unscheduled service visits ten times. My '00 R has around 35K on it, and has been in 6 times already. The warranty is up, so I will probably end up selling it and waiting a few years and then buying one of the new ones. If the super charger had failed this year instead of a year and a half ago, I'd be out $6500.

    If you want a FWD, midsize car like the ES but one that wont put you to sleep, I recommend the Acura TL. You can even row your own in that car if you want, but I dont really recommend it as the torque steer becomes a serious issue with the stick.

    Have you considered a '01 GS430? Relatively low mileage examples are pretty cheap, as the GS430 has never really been much of a hit. You can get the 18" wheels, the ML stereo, and NAV for less than $30K. I bet a Lexus dealer could even track down an "L-tuned" model with the sport suspension for that price.
  • sv7887sv7887 Posts: 351
    Hi All,
    I was on my way to the Lexus dealer to get an ES today and decided to have a look at the Toyota dealer nearby. (Both dealers are owned by the same person) You wouldn't believe what happened. I saw a little car in the corner and asked to take it for a test drive. The salesperson thought I was messing around with him, but took me regardless. That little car was a Toyota Corolla. I was rather surprised at how well it ran. Quite spunky and well laid out inside. I bought it on the spot...It's weird how life works sometimes. I spent less than half that I expected to. Even the wife is happy to have a small car around, especially since I didn't spend much..
    It rode rather quietly and smoothly at 60 MPH. Can't argue with the 38 MPG either. The 1992 is here to stay, and Lexus will be having another look at it next week. It makes this strange creaking noise when pulling into parking spots..Really irritating, especially since I already spent $2100 on suspension work!

    SV
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I really thought you were going to say "I got the Avalon instead of the ES". I definitely did not expect to read that you bought a Corolla. I cant argue with the mpg though, at least for the rest of 2005 it will be invaluable Im sure. I also agree that, except maybe for the Jetta, its got the best interior in the class. And unlike the Jetta the Corolla can actually run for multiple days in a row without breaking down. Over 25 million served!
  • bwiabwia Boston Posts: 1,266
    James Bond has not come close to pulling off some of the stunts executed in The Transporter 2. The movie, essentially an 88 minute commercial for the Audi A8L W-12 Quattro flaunts many of the car’s exceptional and avant-guard features.

    The big black oversized-grille Audi, with the best paint job I have ever seen, is put through a grueling choreography of disbelieving stunts all without a scratch. Four-wheel drive, bullet-proof glass, blue-tooth technology, and other electronic gizmos are stretched to the limit.

    Wow! What a car. Unfortunately, the target market for the A8L W-12 Quattro probably will never see this movie in a theatre where they can gasp, hear the melodic exhaust notes and appreciate the car’s potential. I suspect Audi might put a short clip of it on their website though, a la BMW.
  • If it was me, I would replace it with a 99-2000 LS rather then a new ES...I think you will be happier in the long run...The Price will be less...and you will still have everything and More that you liked about your old LS.
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    LG: The new Jetta is a Corolla wanna-be. Have you not noticed the exterior especially the rear of the new Jetta ? Talk about Zerox copy per excellence !!!
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    LG: The fuzzy math at C&D yielded the 1pt victory for the e90 330i. But after re-adding the numbers once again, it turns out the actual CORRECT scores were dead even 212 pts apiece b/w the 330i and the IS350. So it is a dead tie for 1st place in the comparo.

    But you gotta question a mag that will even continue to rate a car that had such mechanical failure in its testing as one at the top of the heap of the class. Doesn't reliability count for anything in ownership of these cars ???? IMO, the 330i should be at the BOTTOM of the class as a car that may be great but totally unreliable.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,687
    OAC - They've never given a damm about reliability or ownership satisfaction. BTW one of my friends in town had his S500 die on his driveway today and had it flatbedded out. Add another MB diehard who's done with the brand. You don't want to know how disgusted this guy is with the car.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Yeah I've seen the "grown up, sort of" ads everywhere. Clearly they want a piece of that sweet Civic and Corolla pie, and are willing to make it look as Japanese as possible in order to get it. As Auto Extremist would say, notgonnahappen.com. Not when the 2.5 with a crude 5 cyl starts at $20 grand. You can get a loaded to the gills Mazda 3 for that.
  • ideleidele Posts: 200
    Purely my imagining. Lexus -Europa established in northern Italy in a modern factory like that of Ferrari, designing and making very high end synergy hybrid sports and touring cars. And competition cars , too.
  • The next time your friend is driving again ( lol) ask him to take a look at the rear of an early, Japanese built Volvo S40. It looks like a 5/8 version of the S500. That will make him real happy.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,687
    The guy is really teed. This is the second time the car has been flatbedded. He never told me about the first. It came out in frustration mixed in with words I can't post on this board. He had a 2001 that gave him gremlin type problems but nothing major. This is his 2004 replacement and its an electrical lemon.
  • pablo_lpablo_l Posts: 491
    For what it's worth, today I met the 3rd person I know that traded their Benz for a Lexus (2) or Saab (1). My wife could be the 4th, another service is coming up, and I hate her car.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    A Benz for a Saab? Thats unusual. Which Benz was it?
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    FRANKFURT, Sept 7 (Reuters) - German luxury carmaker BMW (BMWG.DE: Quote, Profile, Research) has joined DaimlerChrysler (DCXGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research) and General Motors (GM.N: Quote, Profile, Research) in an alliance to develop new hybrid vehicle technology, DaimlerChrysler and GM said on Wednesday.

    Confirming an earlier report by Reuters, a joint statement said the three carmakers had signed a memorandum of understanding to become equal partners in the project.

    http://today.reuters.com/news/newsArticleSearch.aspx?storyID=154014+07-Sep-2005+RTRS&srch=- bmw
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Interesting. I'm curious as to what makes a hybrid "hot" (Prius, RX400h) vs. "not" (Civic, Accord). The Prius is from the fact that it doesnt look like any other car, so the neighbors immediately notice that you are better than them. That argument doesnt work on the RX400h though. I think in that case there were a lot of people who wanted to be able to say "I drive a hybrid", but were not willing to give up the luxury SUV and settle for a bubble car with a 0-60 of more than 10 seconds.

    I think Honda should've put IMA in the MDX and Pilot first. The Civic is already incredibly fuel efficient and clean burning, it really doesnt need hybrid power. I think BMW would be smart to start with the X3 and X5 first, then work on the cars.
  • ideleidele Posts: 200
    Does anyone think that GM, DC and BMW can really collaborate? None separately has the money needed to match Toyota. So by necessity they're driven to pooling of resources. Given how difficult it was for Daimler-Benz to integrate Chrysler one has to be a sceptic. But this action shows that synergy hybrids are a success and constitute a new paradigm for automotive power.
  • anthonypanthonyp Posts: 1,857
    Pablo Which Mercedes does she have? Tony
  • One dumb question: rather than trying to pool resources on hybrids, wouldn't the world be better of if we in North America could simply import the current diesel version of the European sedans? Incidentally, I find it simply amazing that Massachusetts of all states doesn't allow new sales of the Mercedes E Series diesel? What are they thinking in the Athens of North America?
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Unfortunately things just arent that simple. For example, Japanese cars use something like 101 octane gasoline. If you tried to fill a Skyline with 87 regular, the engine would blow up. I dont think that the difference in Euro spec diesel is that extreme, but there isnt a single Euro spec diesel car or truck that will pass US spec EPA 2007 diesel regulations.

    The diesel E is also not available in NY, and a few others. The current engines are just too dirty to pass air quality controls in these states. Once we have "clean" diesel available here, the 2007 spec cars should be 50 state certified.
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    I'm shocked !!

    Didn't we continue to read from Bimmer/MB fans that their response to Toy/Lex gas-electric hybrid system was... drumroll.... DIESEL ??? Whatever happened to that plan, eh ?

    To battle the mighty Toyota, DCX, GM and BMW needed to combine their resources.... That should tell you how far back they are of Toyota, or how far ahead the latter is. Where were they 5 years ago ???? Sleeping at the wheel, again....

    Sad, really !
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Diesel is going to be around faster then hybrid technology, as in 2007. As it is now diesel is selling in my area for about 25-40 cents less than regular, if the price of the lower sulfur fuel holds up, it will be quite the bargain. I guess BMW is hedging their bets, but I wouldn't buy a hybrid unless I got a dollar for dollar tax deduction against the cost increase of the base model. Otherwise it doesn't make sense.
  • bdr127bdr127 Posts: 950
    but I wouldn't buy a hybrid unless I got a dollar for dollar tax deduction against the cost increase of the base model. Otherwise it doesn't make sense.

    Yeah, the price of hybrid vehicles just doesn't justify their use, as far as saving money is concerned. For example, Honda is touting it's new Accord hybrid, which sells for $30,140 and has a listed mpg of 29/37. The comparable regular V6 Accord sells for $27,300 and 20/29. If you drive 50% city/highway for 12,000 miles/year, the regular would use about 490 gallons ($1470 at $3/g) and the hybrid would use 364 gallons ($1092 at $3/g), for a difference of $378 per year. Do the math.... you'd need to have the car for 7.5 years just to break even! (And this doesn't even factor in a markup on hybrid cars that a lot of people are reporting.)

    Right now it just doesn't seem to be a financially sound decision to buy hybrids..... (And I didn't even bring up the Lexus RX 330 vs 400h... 18/24 vs 31/27 for the lofty price difference of $11,000!!!)
  • Your arguments including the fantastic math showing the nominal cost savings fail to high-light the main reason why we should move to more efficient engines / technologies - conservation and consumption. Driving a 545, I get marginal mileage yet I am more concerned with the amount of petroleum I am consuming than the cost - your right, the extra cost is nominal when spread across 365 days.

    Our society keeps thinking in dollars to be saved when we should be thinking in barrels untapped. The demands of developing countries and the China's and India's of the world are what is define our needs and limits for petroleum - not what it costs me to put a gallon in the tank.
  • rl81rl81 Posts: 53
    Hybrids (and Diesel) on a big(ger) scale will decrease the demand for fuel, no question. What will this cause? The price of fuel will decrease (supply and demand)

    Most people would stop thinking right there.

    But let's think a little bit further: You mentioned China and India. What will they do if gas prices decrease...they will use more as will the rest of the world...

    Should that keep people from doing the right thing? I hope not. Conserving fossile fuels should be a priority for everyone!!! Let's just be realistic about how this is going to happen.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    I've mentioned this before...people should keep in mind that one reason diesel is popular in Europe is that diesel costs as much as 40% less there than gasoline there, due to tax subsidies. Over here, on the other hand, diesel costs slightly more than gas. (Prior to the short-term disruptions caused by Katrina, diesel in my area was actually more expensive than premium gas.)

    http://www.caranddriver.com/article.asp?section_id=27&article_id=9491&page_number=1

    The same article points out that pollution standards going into effect in 2007 will raise the cost of diesel cars (not just the fuel itself)....by an estimated $4500 per car. "It's hard to see a payback on a 2007 diesel car in the U.S. in less than 200,000 miles. That's efficiency you couldn't sell at gunpoint."
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