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High End Luxury Cars

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  • xjs5xjs5 Posts: 33
    The other marque that gets MSRP is Saturn. Mercedes and Saturn, no I can't really figure that out.

    The link sounds very interesting but it won't work for me.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I truly feel that Saturn doesn't stick to that policy all the time either. I don't see why anyone would ever pay sticker for a Saturn. I think Saturn's days are numbered..

    M
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,663
    Are you agreeing with denniswade on his great wife comment about the LS400 or his great handling comment about the LS430? If it's the latter than we may have to make you lex1 because the LS 430 rivals or beats an S-class in many other areas.The great wife comment was made about the old model whereas you referred to the LS430 on your answer back.

    dennis - youv'e got guts - If I make that type of comment and my wife reads it I'm sleeping in the car for the next month or so.

    merc1 - I was appparently getting great discount on an A-8L here in NJ and the car was not on the lot. In December Audi was certainly still discounting heavily. They were even throwing in the ivory white color, 18" wheels and alcantra interior at a price barely above an LS430 that was over $10K cheaper in msrp and that was before I even started to negotiate price. What do you make of the article on MB? In all honesty the LS430 interior blows away the S-Class. I think the german auto mags are upset about that and the fact that the A-8L interior is also beautiful and of very high quality - certainly well above an S as well.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Oh I didn't notice that. I was thinking LS430, it doesn't matter though, they're both non-lust cars for me. Are you sure he was talking about his wife? I don't *think* he was. The MB aritcle brings up some tough stuff for Mercedes. Yes their quality has gone down a noticeable degree. The little details is where Mercedes used to shine, but they're cutting back too much now. I still don't think the LS430' interior or the A8's interior "blows away" the interior of the S, but I do think they have a somewhat higher level of material quality, but certainly not "blow away". That is over stating it.

    M
  • nealm1nealm1 Posts: 154
    The problem is the close-parenthesis at the end of the URL. Try copying the URL into the location line and then deleting the paren. That should work. Have any of you LS 430 fans driven the car hard w/both the 16 and 17 in. wheels? Do the 17's degrade the ride significantly?
  • flint350flint350 Posts: 250
    Sorry about the link. Here is the working version - didn't catch that closed paren. at the end, that is what messed it up.

    http://mbspy.bacosys.be/mbquality.htm
  • denniswadedenniswade Posts: 362
    to see what they said, and unfortunately the S-class is not listed (probably too few respondents to allow a statistically relevant sample). However, the next one down the ladder -- the E-class -- is listed as having average reliability for 6 of the 7 years covered (the first, 1992, is listed as "better than average"). The LS400 is listed as having "above average" reliability for all years covered. (There is no "Far above average" rating, so "above average" is the highest rating you can get).
  • denniswadedenniswade Posts: 362
    the "large, good-natured" thing?? Pure speculation on my part....really!! =O)
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,663
    I agree that "blows away" is overdoing it. But either the Audi or LS interiors are nicer places to live. I'm pretty sure that this will drive MB to change. Last year the S interior was better than the previous generation LS. Sometimes its just the latest chess move. But MB is in a pickle because raising prices to cover the costs of the improvements isn't so easy and you unfotunately have to decide if you are going to allow your gross profit per car to suffer. Personally I don't think MB has to improve the interior to hold their marketshare but their image will suffer if they don't.
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    image

    Don't miss the weekly MB Tuesdays chat at 6-7pm Pacific/9-10pm Eastern! All MB fans/enthusists/owners/potential owners are welcome to participate. Hope to see you there!

    Click on the link below to enter the chat at the times above.
    http://www.edmunds.com/chat/mercedeschat.html


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  • pablo_lpablo_l Posts: 491
    ...they're a matter of taste and style. German cars never have gone for the most sumptuous and cuddly interiors. It's more about ergonomy and somewhat spartan functionality. "Ve zon't vant deeztrakshun in ze cockpit, schweinehund" is the philosophy there. But mind you, if you want to spend 11 hours driving on European highways, few interiors will keep you in better shape than Mercedes' or BMW's. And I say that despite my personal bias for Jaguar interiors (I'd go for an Aston Martin or Bentley, but hey...).

    I think all of us have sat in LS400s, and I have 2 colleagues with LS430s, and I do not think that the Lexus sets such a clear standard when it comes to the interior, sorry. It is not a fact, it is personal taste and a mere opinion. I for one am not a big fan of the Lexus interior. The SC430 is another story - gorgeous, if a bit overdone, interior. The LS430 is great, no doubt about it, but not untochable. It definitely has its very cheap touches here and there. To claim it is head and shoulders above the S-class is, in my opinion, an overzealous, borderline silly comment. To me, the best interiors in this class are either the Jag's or the MB's.
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    is on now! (6-7pm Pacific/9-10 pm Eastern). Hope to see you there!
    http://www.edmunds.com/chat/mercedeschat.html


    Drew
    Host
    Vans, SUVs, and Aftermarket and Accessories message boards
  • denniswadedenniswade Posts: 362
    to characterize a subjective opinion about a subjective topic is a little silly too, isn't it? Obviously, there are those who prefer the relative sparseness of a German interior to the sumptuousness of a British, French or Japanese interior -- but that doesn't make their passion about it silly. They just have different criteria than you do.

    I've driven Mercedes', BMW's, Jaguar's and Lexus' latest offerings back to back for over 6 years running, and my opinions of the cars' relative merits has not changed in all that time. Mercedes is solid, but cold and uninvolving; BMW is sporty, with a touch of softness in the interior that the Mercedes lacks; Jaguar is very sumptuous but confining, and a little vague in the handling department; and the Lexus is both ergonomically near-perfect and sumptuous at the same time. It also has a level of performance and handling that is rather startling, considering its emphasis on smoothness and comfort.

    I've said before that I don't care much for the exterior of the LS430; but the interior is simply a work of art, and supremely comfortable. Call me silly if you must -- but that's my opinion, and it's shared by a lot of other people, including ALL of the magazine editors whose reviews I've read.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,663
    Perfectly stated! That is the exact way I feel about the LS430 - spectaclar feeling inside due to the luxury interior, extremely quiet with a great sound system, best ride of any car I've ever been in and very fast with far better handling than many of the auto mags would have the non-Lexus driver ever believe or understand. When those rare instances arise where the Lexus can't negotiate a sharp curve as well as the BMW I'll just slow down a bit. That's what I'd do if I had the BMW anyway and besides that's what the person driving in front of me is doing so I wouldn't have a choice in the matter. By the way the car's design - goofy headlight's and all grow on you every day. Now you still have to explain to me how you got away with that wife comment re the LS400.
  • flint350flint350 Posts: 250
    I also defend the Lexus interior as being significantly better than the S-Class. Subjective, yes, but based on sound reasoning. As Denniswade says, most of the press agree that this is a strong suit of the Lexus, to the detriment of the S Class. Maybe "head and shoulders" just doesn't sound good to you, but I thoroughly believe there is a significant (not subtle) difference. Much of the criticism of the Benz centers on its interior and fit/finish. Its use of cheaper parts and the fact that just bringing it up to similar appointment levels as the LS costs big $$$ in options. Have you seen the prices of the designo upgrade? And what do you really get for that except a prettier interior (closer to Lexus) that you probably should have gotten for your original $80-90K. Sorry, but most Lexus folks are quick to accept where our choice falls ever so slightly behind (the German style handling), but the Benz folks seem not to accept that the S Class seriously lags in some areas - interior is one. Reliability is another. The latest Insurance Institute safety ratings, just issued, are another. I'm not saying the S isn't safe or very good, but the Lexus is rated in the highest category and the S Class isn't. So, to end, I must disagree when you say the Lexus does not set a clear standard in this area. Indeed, this is one of the areas where its advantage is crystal clear. But that's just my opinion, I could be wrong. :)
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,663
    Mercede's problem is a basic business one.They were forced (merc1 - I know you don't like me saying it but no one will ever convince me otherwise) to lower prices not just because of Lexus but because they were far too expensive relative to the other luxury cars. When they cut prices they cut quality to preserve profit margins. They also put a low mark-up on the dealer invoice price to the msrp so that the car could not be discounted. The cut in quality hurt a lot. Never would I think, let alone say, that the old LS400 was as good a car as the old S-420 or S-500. But Lexus made big moves in the interior design and quality of materials, tightened the ride and yet still made it smoother/quieter and significantly improved handling while introducing a Euro suspension and an expensive ultra model. But the base car price stays flat and the options are very affordable - $6k in options buys you a lot. So now the car to many, including myself, equals or surpasses the vaunted S-500. MB's problem is that it has been so successful in the past and remains the class leader with the highest prices by far - $18k-25k more for an S-500 over an LS430 is absurd. How are they going to maintain that price point or if not that price than the gross profit it brings in the face of stiffening competition the likes of which they have never seen? Plus they have to deal with the Chrysler problems. A tall order!
  • denniswadedenniswade Posts: 362
    Now that Renault has taken over, Mercedes will have TWO premium Japanese brands to contend with -- Infiniti being more sports-oriented than the Lexus. God help 'em if Honda ever decides to make a real commitment to bringing Acura into the full-tilt luxury class.

    I have a feeling they're gonna have their hands full.
  • remus26remus26 Posts: 34
    The LS430 interior is better than the S-class interior, IMO, and in the opinion of the magazines also. But that doesn't mean the LS430 interior is head and shoulders above the S-class interior. Definately the S-class interior and Benz interiors in general have gone slightly down market. This is of course, due to the fact that Mercedes-Benz has realized in recent years that they can't charge whatever they feel for their cars. If any German carmakers interior is close to and/or even better than Lexus' interiors it is Audi's interiors. The A4, A6, TT, & A8 all have truly gorgeous interiors. Even Mercedes-Benz or BMW doesn't have equal interiors.

    And as for Jaguar. The current XJ8 has a gorgeous interior, but I suspect that the next generation XJ8 will not have as sumptuous & as elegant a interior as the current one does. Why? Look at the S-Type interior and upcoming X-Type interior. The X-type interior is plasticky with very little wood trim and the S-Type interior is also un-traditionaly Jaguar.
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    "The latest Insurance Institute safety ratings, just issued, are another. I'm not saying the S isn't safe or very good, but the Lexus is rated in the highest category and the S Class isn't."

    Um, FYI, the S-class has never been tested by the IIHS, and it probably won't since it is so pricey and not exactly selling in large numbers. As such, the above statement about the S-class not being rated in the highest category is moot. The internal MB crash test results (specifically the 40mph offset crashes) of the S-class are excellent though, just as they were for the C-class and E-class (which was categorised in the same segment as the LS430). All of these MB vehicles didn't even crack their windshields during the crashes.


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    Host
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