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High End Luxury Cars

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  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    So should I take this as your admission that Lexus execs are capable of giving BS also?

    Yes.

    Car execs and marketers are cut from the same mold, regardless of nationality, imho, when it comes to making claims about new vehicles.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Oh I'm sure, but I didn't see any point showing Italian engineers being wow or worried about a Lexus. Doesn't make any sense to people who know where these cars are made and what they compete with. I mean who in Italy is worried about the RX300, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Maserati? To have British engineers smelling the RX300's leather was equally absurd considering the leather in most upscale British cars.

    The whole thing just screams "we want to be in the European car scene so bad" or "we want to be European".

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Uh oh someone has stolen your user name! :surprise:

    Let me ask you this, do you think that statement was about the entire S-Class and 7-Series lineup or just the entry-level S450/750i versions?

    M
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    My guess is that they were talking about their mainstream hybrid vs mainstream 7 and S cars. If Lexus does some sort of "super LS" down the road then that might be what compares against the 100k+ BMW and S sedans. But my attitude is, ignore the marketing-speak until the actual car emerges.

    We may know more in a month:

    12/08/2005 Torrance, CA
    Lexus will stage the world premiere of its all-new LS luxury sedan at a press conference during the North American International Auto Show on Sunday, January 8, 2006.

    Arriving late next year, the fourth-generation Lexus LS will set impressive new standards in design, styling, engineering, safety and performance. The Lexus press conference is scheduled for 12:25 PM in the Riverview Ballroom in COBO Center.
    link title

    But going by past experience, a 9-months-in-advance unveiling might be rather short on stats. They might put out something really vague like "well over 300hp" for the ICE version.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    Merc1, I assume you'll be going to NAIS? If so we'll look forward to your impressions of the LS!
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Oh I'll be there for sure! I would post-pone an emergency appendectomy to go to Detroit! I'll be going 2 days this time around. I always seems to get back home and find out I missed something when the mags run their coverage. A lot of people don't go downstairs at Cobo Hall but they're missing out. This is where a lot of the suppliers like ZF, Delphi are and their engineers will talk to you as long as you want. I found this out in 2003.

    Sperately, I surely hope the rumors out of Europe aren't true about Lexus planning a small entry-level car called the "BS". I wouldn't know how to stop talking about it. :D

    M
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,679
    "What gets me is how you Lexus folk try to use sales and corporate success as the end-all to any discussion about cars. From buyers caring about what a CEO says and financial statments to let us forget about what the Lexus GM said about BMW because the GS/IS are selling."

    We've had this discussion before and let me again clarify what I have said in the past. That being that the class of buyer here - in some cases - is more likely to have a feel for how well a company is performing because many are business people and investors and as such are aware of these things. You make it sound like I said every buyer walks into a dealership with an annual report in hand.

    "It is like a knee-jerk reaction to any and everything critical that is said about Lexus when when it comes down to most buyers don't care one bit about any of this and none of these companies (except maybe Jaguar) are in any real danger of going out of business."

    The point is simple - the proof of everything is in the results and not someone's subjective opinion. You are successful selling cars as profitably as Toyota sells them because clearly you are building what appeals to the market. Same thing with Lexus in the lux segment. Did they get lucky and surpass everyone else here or are they buiding what appeals to buyers more than the others?? Someone made the statement about how well BMW would be w/o I-drive. Conversely one has to wonder how much more Lexus will lead the segment by when it competes on more levels than the 3 basic tiers of cars it competes on now. The fact that it is the leader with less than 100% of the offerings of its competitors also must be taken into consideration in evaluating its success to date.

    Lastly - let me give you a one word definition of marketing press releases - SPIN. It's a worldwide epidemic that is shared by every company that operates a business. There are no exceptions. As syswei stated so well, what Lexus stated is the same type of nonsense spin that MB puts out on quality. Please don't tell me you believe these things or hold one's feet to the fire and not the others.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    You are successful selling cars as profitably as Toyota sells them because clearly you are building what appeals to the market. Same thing with Lexus in the lux segment.

    Let me try to anticipate a German reponse: "Lexus buyers aren't enthusiasts. Therefore, Lexus buyers don't count. What they value in their cars isn't important."
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    We've had this discussion before and let me again clarify what I have said in the past. That being that the class of buyer here - in some cases - is more likely to have a feel for how well a company is performing because many are business people and investors and as such are aware of these things. You make it sound like I said every buyer walks into a dealership with an annual report in hand.

    You're right we've had this conversation before and I totally disagree with the notion (and there is no proof of it considering how the sky never fell on high-end Benz sales) that any type of buyer cares about financial reports or what comments a CEO made. You've been predicting this great fall for years now and the money'd still buy Mercedes. They just sold the 1000th 450K SLR recently. If Mercedes was so "out" with the rich they wouldn't be able to do that. I do think people/buyers in general care whether or not the company they're buying a car from will be around to service it. This is why I say that this is irrelevant when it comes to these cars as none of these companies are going to just go out of business.

    The point is simple - the proof of everything is in the results and not someone's subjective opinion. You are successful selling cars as profitably as Toyota sells them because clearly you are building what appeals to the market. Same thing with Lexus in the lux segment. Did they get lucky and surpass everyone else here or are they buiding what appeals to buyers more than the others?? Someone made the statement about how well BMW would be w/o I-drive.

    As far as I'm concerned this is Lexus double-speak. Lexus being #1 in sales doesn't mean they are the most appealing. Lots of people want a Mercedes or BMW still, but won't buy one for various reasons - styling, reliability etc. I would say Lexus is the most popular for sure, but far from the most appealing especially when you're not talking about reliability and what type of loaner car the dealer is going to have. Then there is the issue of price. Not everyone can afford the upper lineup of cars that BMW and especially Mercedes sells. Please spare me the price-doesn't-matter stuff because it is bogus imo. You don't think BMW and especially Mercedes would sell a whole lot more cars, especially at at the upper end if they were 10-20K cheaper.

    Conversely one has to wonder how much more Lexus will lead the segment buy when it competes on more levels than the 3 basic tiers of cars it competes on now. The fact that it is the leader with less than 100% of the offerings of its competitors also must be taken into consideration in evaluating its success to date.

    Back to same sales = best stuff here it seems. Lexus competes on more than just 3 tiers by the way. The have 4 sedans, 1 roadster and 3 SUVs at the moment, hardly the small meager lineup you're implying. This sales stuff is really good at ignoring other factors that play a role in sales, but keep thinking that Lexus is on equal footing and outselling the competition. Totally false. They're cheaper cars and much cheaper on some cases and the bulk of their volume is in the under 45-50K but here this doesn't mean anything.

    Lastly - let me give you a one word definition of marketing press releases - SPIN. It's a worldwide epidemic that is shared by every company that operates a business. There are no exceptions. As syswei stated so well, what Lexus stated is the same type of nonsense spin that MB puts out on quality.

    Finally a admission, and only because a fellow Lexus fan was able to admit it first otherwise I doubt if you would have made such a statement. I guess the fact that no Lexus fan here is good enough to spin that crap Toyota gave about helping GM an admission that all car company execs do the same thing was in order. True to form though it had to involve something about Mercedes-Benz though. Classic case "ooooh he did it to".

    This board has been full of didn't-happen predictions of doom about German car makers. You say that the proof is in the sale and profits right? Well doesn't BMW do well in that area? Hasn't Mercedes done well in that area until the last 18 months of so? Why do you guys compare Toyota to a company like BMW and expect BMW to have the same type of success when they aren't nearly as big? For a luxury car maker isn't BMW a solid performer for people who live for profit statements and such? Despite all the dour talk from folks here and the press BMW is on fire in the very same category all Lexus fans love to gloat about - sales and they turn a decent profit also.

    M
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,679
    More twists by you that I won't even repond to. But I will respond to the MB one. I said they would decline to the point they'd lose money and market share (not go out of business and lose every customer as seems to be your twisted response for every bad business issue about them that someone raises) and I said that 4+ years ago. It happened.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Let me try to anticipate a German reponse: "Lexus buyers aren't enthusiasts. Therefore, Lexus buyers don't count. What they value in their cars isn't important."

    Nice try, you got it half-right. Lexus buyers do count obviously since there are many, and there are a few enthusiasts that like the brand - Lexusguy being one of them. Any person that can have a Jaguar in the same garage has to understand where the rest of us are coming from, at least on some level. That said, most, heck the majority of Lexus' most ardent followers aren't anything even approaching an enthusiast for two reasons IMO. Firstly, no other car is ever mentioned it is Lexus, Lexus, Lexus and more Lexus. Enthusiasts at the very least just likes cars in general. Secondly most Lexus fans simply don't understand or don't care to understand that a car is more than just reliability surveys and how a dealership treats you. The latter part is always thrown up as an implication that every other dealer body is just crap and doesn't know how to take care of a high-end customer and that is just plain ridiculous. Mercedes and BMW have been doing it for years and if they were so terrible Lexus' perfect (implied) dealer service would have taken all their customers by now if such a thing was oh-so important like some here make it out to be.

    Nothing could be any further removed from being an "enthusiast". Someone here made a statement about a Bentley being no different from a Mercedes or a Lexus.

    A comment like that brings an "enthusiast" to tears.

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    More twists by you that I won't even repond to. But I will respond to the MB one. I said they would decline to the point they'd lose money and market share (not go out of business and lose every customer as seems to be your twisted response for every bad business issue about them that someone raises) and I said that 4+ years ago. It happened.

    So all the comments about MB being out of favor with the money'd and how they'd better drop 20K from their prices and how their status will be gone and what not - none of that has happened. Maybe you didn't mean that they'd go out of business, but how does one take "Mercedes will be finished" all the time. You talk about me implying that you say this all the time, how about that implication is made anytime Lexus comes out with a new car or tops another survey. Each and everything Lexus does spells trouble for Mercedes and if you believed the Danny Clements hype of a few months ago - BMW too.

    It is so easy to revise a prediction after the most of it didn't come true. It is real easy to hide that false stuff behind they "lost market share" as opposed to they "won't be able to sell cars anymore" which has been predicted over and over here. The fact is that Mercedes' name and reputation will see them through a troubled time just long enough for them to get their act together and that is something Lexus fan can't stand it seems, that Mercedes has just folded and gave up. Not gonna happen.

    Sure Mercedes has lost market share, likely because of reliabilty concerns and being higher priced than the competition - I'd admitted this before, nothing new.

    Some of you guys should really read some of my posts on other sites if you think I believe Mercedes is perfect, you'd really be surprised.

    M
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,679
    "Mercedes will be finished".

    Never said that and yes I still think they'll be passed in status in the the next 3-5 years (which is what I did say).

    Rooting for MB to die??

    Are you kidding - the more competition there is the better for the consumer.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    Mercedes-Benz on Tour with Mötley Crüe

    I remember the days when high end marque vehicles were advertised with classical music.

    MOTELY CRUE
  • ctsangctsang Posts: 237
    merc1, do you hangout with billionaires? I do. As I said, here in HK, you see RR all the time and MB is a dime a dozen. The reason we buy those snob cars is only one, to show off because it costs more. We don't buy them becasue they look good or drive better as you keep insisting. Privately, we all know the Japanese cars are a lot more reliable than those snob cars, including Ferrari, etc. Actually, Japanese makes everything more reliable than Germans or Englishmen, including machinery, electronics, transportatiton equipment, medical instruments, etc. Come to HK, I will show you.
  • ctsangctsang Posts: 237
    You said if MB costs the same or less than Lexus, MB will sell more. You are wrong. The rich people who buy it to show off will then buy something even more expensive than MB to show off. Therefore MB may actually sell less. That's why it will never happen. MB knows that.
  • ctsangctsang Posts: 237
    Even my friends and relatives from HK who now live in Canada and US continue to do the same, and/or buy an expensive house with cash. No wonder their neighbors are so jealous. Imagine a HK kid wearing Versace driving a MB to school with a LV schoolbag. That does not mean he think a MB looks good or drives better than other Japanese car. Merc1, do you now know the real reasons why MB still sells among the rich?
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    We’re not rich like that, we’re merely professional car yentas. How many times do I have to tell you that? We have a totally different perspective on things. We like to repeat things over and over, not listen, then try to figure out why nobody listens to us. Do you think your billionaire friends can donate a couple of cool mil to the Circular Talk Society to keep us going? It’s a very noble cause and we would be forever indebted. I’m the treasurer. Just cut me a check and I’ll see that it gets put to good use immediately.

    ;-)
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    Merc1:

    The vitriol against Lexus and Lex fans is disturbing. There is so much name calling, it is just not funny. Why ? You and others now fancy calling any rebuttal to your German *we are the world* posts as "spin". You are still waiting for us to "unspin" the so-called Toyota helping GM thingy. That was a red herring thrown out here by BMW fans to get us all knotted up, another thing to carpet bag Lexus about.... Since you guys brought it up, why not deal with it ?

    I have said it repeatedly, the key fact you all seem to run away from, and instead castigate and de-mean is that a for-profit company like Toyota created a luxury division and within 15 years became #1 lux nameplate in the world's most important market. This irks all of you, I bet. It must eat away at you for such vitriol against Lexus. What else makes this incessant attacks - wannabe, copy cat, synthetic, not a luxury company, a Toyota in fancy clothes, etc that you all throw around here.

    Sure Lexus may not sell to your auto rag-waving enthusiasts who are so few and far between you need a telescope to see them, it sure is selling to the mass market that it caters to. Just becos it doesn't meet some narrowly defined viewpoints, you all pile on and call it names.... synthetic, wannabe, copy cat, etc... Name calling won't stop the march to success, only points out the failings of its detractors... The LS outsells the 7 and S-class COMBINED. You don't like to hear that cos it doesn't favor your world view of cars. If these automobiles you covet so much are just artifacts to stare at, maybe. But they are FOR SALE, and only through this can we judge their success.... Tough if you don't like it, but that is the unvanished TRUTH.

    If reliability is so unseemingly, why is MB doing its darnest best to position themselves as fixing this problem ? Why do BMW strive so hard to improve this aspect of their product with theri freebie program ? And don't even get me started on marketing ! Puleaze... The slogan - "The Ultimate Driving Machine" is all marketing BS. What is ultimate about the mainstream BMW cars or trucks ? If they are that great why create another expensive SP option, or M version ? If MB were that much driver's cars, why the need for auto-trannied AMG cars ? Truth is, MB S-sedans are luxury cruise mobiles, just like their Lexus counterpart. They are overpriced for what you get. Imagine a V6 E350 selling for $50K and change ? Pure robbery. Those who want the 3-pointed star do pony up this money, and more power to them. But I am sure Merc1 you won't spend your hard-earned money on such a car, or would you ?

    Lexus is on the way UP, MB is on its way DOWN... Its only a matter of time... Without Chrysler today, MB would be a money losing venture, and all your fancy AMG/S high end cars won't save its bacon (see what's happening at GM and slowly but surely Ford ?) Now you don't have to accept that, but of course you are not an MB exec who stares at reality in the face everyday. They understand it more than any of us peons debating here. If it took Toyota/Lexus 15 years to eclipse the MB/BMW lux crown in name plate sales in the US, how long would it take them to be global #1 ? Maybe another 20/30/etc.. years ? They have the money, the resources, and the will and patience. Only time, and nature can stop them... Not the raves and rants that we perform here will change anything... Time shall tell.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Beethoven once wrote that his music was only to be played as background music for commercials advertising reliable vehicles.
    I believe Brahms, Chopin and Mozart left similar documents.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    The "Ultimate Driving Machine" represents truth in advertising because in its price class, nothing drives better than a BMW.
    You can hate it but you can't dispute it.
    Similarly, if Lexus advertised its LS430 as "Ultimate Geezer Machine" I would admire the company for its honesty although such a slogan could easily be shared with the Toyota Avalon and the Mercury Grand Marquis.

    I note that the consumer rating of the 2006 LS430 is only 9.1.
    I have never seen a Lexus car rated this low before.
    More evidence of a company on the way up?
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    The “Ultimate Driving Machine" is all marketing BS.

    No it ain’t. Actually I think BMW marketing hitchhiked onto it in the 70s courtesy of the customer love affair with the 2002. So I think it was created by customers and/or the press as opposed to being a creation of marketing and advertising. I’m not totally sure about it and could be wrong but will try to look it up one of these days unless someone else can verify. Regardless, the claim is true, at least we BMW enthusiasts believe it to be true, so does the press. I like sports cars and I like the driving qualities of BMW sedans which are the closest things to sports cars in the sedan world, hence the ultimate driving machines with four doors.

    Hey, I’m thinking about forming a new club called the Loosen Up Club Klatch (LUCK) designed specifically for intense Edmunds Posters who take cars and their brands too seriously. You will get back rubs, decaffeinated coffee, attendants that say “I understand” and “Yes, I think you are right”. And most importantly, I will hire a medical professional to design a skin patch for when we get the urge to get on the computer for anything that is unrelated to work. If ctsang comes through with the donation, I will see to it that part of it goes to LUCK. Promise.

    ;-)
  • bdr127bdr127 Posts: 950
    The LS outsells the 7 and S-class COMBINED. You don't like to hear that cos it doesn't favor your world view of cars. If these automobiles you covet so much are just artifacts to stare at, maybe. But they are FOR SALE, and only through this can we judge their success.... Tough if you don't like it, but that is the unvanished TRUTH.

    Unvanished truth, huh? If you're going to spread truths, then you should probably have the facts to back it up.

    Facts: As of Dec 1, LS430 YTD sales = 23723, 7-Series YTD sales = 15989, S-Class YTD sales = 14124. 30113 COMBINED.

    Unvanishedly made up. Good job.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    if Lexus advertised its LS430 as "Ultimate Geezer Machine" I would admire the company for its honesty

    Posted twice in the past, this shows what the geezers are really driving:
    link title
  • anthonypanthonyp Posts: 1,857
    Everyone might just step back and review all of their opinions, and realize that all of the cars we enjoy are going up...Merecedes slipped and had now started back up. BMW up, and my car Audi is really good, although it is seldom mentioned..

    The super rich people I have had the pleasure to know seem to prefer a big SUV to carry their entourage(sp) from their planes to wherever..There aren`t really that many enthusiasts other than us small `band of brothers` and it is fun to read the opinions no matter what they are..Tony
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    The logic that you Lexus guys keep using is that the more cars you can sell, there is some implied superiority to the vehicle. That's the biggest bunch of baloney I've ever heard. I guess from that reasoning, exotic cars have no value, and pickup trucks, which represent the single biggest sellers, are therefore the best-built vehicles.

    TagMan
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I believe the Lexus average age is indicated in the 40's because of all the suburban yuppie soccer moms in their 20's and 30's driving Lexus SUV's to the mall.
    You must know that the average age for people driving Lexus cars is higher than the 40's.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    The logic that you Lexus guys keep using is that the more cars you can sell, there is some implied superiority to the vehicle. That's the biggest bunch of baloney I've ever heard.

    If Lexus is selling more vehicles than a competitor in the same class, then indeed, more people find Lexus superior to MB than find MB superior to Lexus. That doesn't mean Lexus is objectively superior; it means that more people find Lexus superior based on their own subjective needs/desires.

    Now, lest you claim that it is all due to price, let me point out that there are ample MB choices for those who can't afford an S or SL. Indeed MB's product line starts marginally lower in price than Lexus'. In other words, MB brackets Lexus' price structure. If Lexus ran from 30-80 and MB from 40-170, then the price arguement would hold water in regards to overall nameplate sales. But the reality is different.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,679
    Nope. Go by test drives, things I seek in a car, luxury items, dealer service, personal experience, knowledge of what problems people in my circles have had with their cars, build quality and reliability and many other variables not necessarily in the order I just wrote. The fact that the brand and its parent keep growing at the expense of others is a clear indication of where consumer preference is though.

    You know we can argue this to the cows come home. But one thing is for sure - Japan is on a big upswing and Germany is on a downswing.
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    But one thing is for sure - Japan is on a big upswing and Germany is on a downswing.

    There you go again . . . it's all about numbers.

    Then, like I said, if it's about numbers, I guess pickup trucks rule. Are we about to see a Lexus pickup truck?

    This is so hard to put into words, but it wouldn't matter to me if the Japanese sold a billion cars and the Europeans only sold a dozen. I'd be one of the 12. There is something missing in those Lexus vehicles, as great as they may be in certain respects, as though Lexus's are reliable robots without a heart or soul.

    TagMan
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