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High End Luxury Cars

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Comments

  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    It's funny that you bring up model year 1998.

    I had a 1998 LS400 that I bought on the notion that thing runs forever. I know that the Lexus' are by far the most reliable cars in it's segment, but my experiences with my '98 proved otherwise. Much unlike my beloved '92 that is still running for the owner I sold it to 10 years ago. Let's take a look at what happen to my '98:

    Transmission failure at only 29,000 miles(4200 repair)
    PCM reflashed several times throughout ownership
    Both control arms needed repair(way out of the norm)
    Total electronic failure at 38,500 miles, and that was the last straw.

    In sharp contrast, the '01 S500 that I got rid of it for NEVER went to service for nothing more than usual standard MB maintanence and recall repair. This is the model that was the lemon of Germany.

    And now lets look at my latest offering, the A8 W-12. Not so much as a whisper and this car is far from the assembly line w/ 17000 miles on the clock. And we're still talking German.

    So Lexus is not immune to deficiency, or ineffeciency for that matter. I know a lot of Lexus' cases are isolated and don't occur often, but read the Lexus threads on this very forum, especially the cars that AREN'T FIVE YEARS OLD YET(ie: current LS life-cycle), and you'll be able to seperate life from fairy tale. We have to remember that these cars are all mechanical, and yes some give-in way before others, but they all have problems. Show me a completely trouble-free car, and I'll dig my own grave.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Not fair! Laughing so loud this mornng, I woke up the " The General."
    The earliest I've ever gotten my computer printout of weekend chores.
    Very funny post!!!
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Just trying to imagine that!
    I dunno. Between you and Tagman, I have never laughed so loudly this early on a Saturday morning!
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    Garyh1, please learn management and then jump to conclusion, otherwise you will burn yourself.

    What the heck does this mean, besides apparently being some sort of snide insult? Like much of what you post, it is unintelligible.

    You are speculating on "Lexus would have" and "Lexus could have"!

    Was your point that it was mere speculation on my part that Lexus had performed any price vs. demand studies before coming up with their entire business strategy? You can't possibly be that naive, and then suggest that I am the one who needs to "learn management". Clearly, it is you who needs to study microeconomics and profit maximization.

    At this point in my life, I am sure I could still learn much from Jack Welch, but I have yet to see any indication I have anything to learn from you. With apologies to Lloyd Bentsen, "You are no Jack Welch."
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Just got a call from my local Lexus dealer.
    Not surprisingly, he would very much like to meet you.
    He ordered special Kona coffee just for you.
    High rollers always get the VIP treatment!
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    High rollers always get the VIP treatment!

    In addition, for special customers so willing to pay a premium fee, they will tear out that Mark Levinson® Audio System and replace it with a Bose Audio system.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Hey, for $20k more AND the Bose?
    I'll be right down. Please hold it for me!
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    Between you and Tagman, I have never laughed so loudly this early on a Saturday morning!

    I hope the others will roll back and read that letter also. All in good fun, of course.

    TagMan
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    Hey, for $20k more AND the Bose?
    I'll be right down. Please hold it for me!


    Throw in the sign that says I paid as much as the price of a 750Li, please. Better yet, I'll pay for the sign, too.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Man, I admire your shrewd bargaining skills.
    In that case, we will put a stop on the Kona and get you the Jamaica Blue Mountain beans reserved for our very best customers.
    Perhaps a GS for the wife while you're here? With a little creativity, you might even fit 2 plastic grocery bags in the trunk.
    If you come in today, I may be able to convince my manager to let you have the GS for $14k over list.
    Yes sir, Mr. Steve! It will definitely be a "May To Remember!"
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    Like Howard, those "Dear Lexus/Dear Steve" letters were funny... funny... funny. Thanks Tagman, Lexusguy, Syswei and the crown of it, Manegi, for injecting some humor in this discourse. The dizzying array of Stevekilburn posts can make you look away some, but some humor makes it easier to read and absorb. And Tagman, thanks for capturing 3 pages of Steve's posts in one Dear Lexus letter. That was hilarious !
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    Yes sir, Mr. Steve! It will definitely be a "May To Remember!"

    ROFLOL :D
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I think the S450, in the format we are all expecting it to be, would not necessarily offer MB a clear advantage over the LS460 and it also would not necessarily have enough unique characteristics compared to the S550 . . . and it, therefore, could potentially cannabalize some S550 sales, as well as lose some others to the LS460.

    Well this is exactly what I was saying in that post. I don't think the time or configuration is right for the S450 right now. If Mercedes does adopt their new petrol direct injection system to their new V8s that would be the time to introduce a S450 with at least 360hp. I don't see a S350 even with direct-injection here anytime soon. They have the S65 AMG, S63 AMG and then possibly a S320 CDI which will be, along with that S450, enough S-Class variants to enable them to keep the car selling strongly for years to come.

    I don't think you've gone too far with this because you're saying the exact same thing I was suggesting about adding a S450 right, it would do more harm than good, IMO.

    M
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    I don't think the time or configuration is right for the S450 right now...

    I don't think you've gone too far with this because you're saying the exact same thing I was suggesting about adding a S450 right, it would do more harm than good, IMO.


    So you are saying a single S550 model is enough to hold off the LS460, LS460L, LS600hL, 750i, 750iL, A8, A8L, XJR ?? Methinks not. MB needs another one to supplement the S550 pretty quick. By next spring, the LS600hL arrives here, and MB suddenly has 3 LS series sedans to battle against using one S550, or maybe a possible S600. But MB is known to have far more variants than Lexus, so it'd be strange if the role is reversed, don't you think ? And I don't count the very low volume S63/S65 here.
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    I don't see a S350 even with direct-injection here anytime soon.

    Well, while we do mostly agree . . . maybe not on this point. I am suggesting an alternative that is unexpected, even by you. I am suggesting an S350. Certainly, the 320 CDI would be the more obvious expectation, but if the 350 CGI is truly slated for the CLS, as I believe it is, then I find it easier to think that it (the 350 CGI) could worm its way into the S-Class as well, perhaps as the S350 CGI. It would be less of a clash with the S550, and concurrently it would tap into a growing market and offer an additional competing vehicle.

    I place high credibility with your views, as you are a walking MB database with a direct google connection as well, IMO, but on this one (S350 CGI) I admit that I am thinking a little further outside the box. Maybe too far, but it makes sense to me, at least for now.

    TagMan
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    So you are saying a single S550 model is enough to hold off the LS460, LS460L, LS600hL, 750i, 750iL, A8, A8L, XJR ??

    No, does it look like I'm saying that? I clearly stated that I don't think it would be the right thing for them to introduce a S450 RIGHT NOW for the reasons Tagman and I mentioned before. Mercedes doesn't have to "hold off" the LS nor could they as far as sales go because we all know the LS is going to be cheaper. You missed the point entirely it seems.

    MB needs another one to supplement the S550 pretty quick. By next spring, the LS600hL arrives here, and MB suddenly has 3 LS series sedans to battle against using one S550, or maybe a possible S600.

    Nonsense. They don't need anything "pretty quick" because as it stands now the S550 is selling a rate not previously seen for the S-Class. The point is as time goes on and the competition increases they'll start to add more variants which is no different that what MB and BMW for that matter have done for years and years.

    And I don't count the very low volume S63/S65 here.

    You don't have to as far as your sales theories go, I mentioned them because these are variants that MB will build - point being they'll have enough already without adding a S350 CGI like Tagman hinted at.

    This whole "who will be tops in sales" thing is really irrelevant until either Lexus prices like MB (which I'm not suggesting they do) or until MB drops prices to compete directly with Lexus. We all know the Lexus will be thousands cheaper and common sense says it should sell better especially that SWB LS460 which won't even be close to a starting price of the current S550. If there were an S450 coming for this fall it would have been at the NY show like all the other MY2007 updates were. So as it stands the price of entry to the "S-Class" will be around 87K (for now at least), likely 20K or more above the price of where the LS460 will base at.

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Well there is already a CLS350, but we don't get it here because MBUSA has seems to have sworn off 6-cylinder variants of higher end cars like the CLS, SL, S etc. This "CGI" version is an upgrade to the existing car and so far its only for Western Europe because it depends on the cleanest petrol possible to be effective.

    However MBUSA did offer a S350 version of the W220 in its closing months so maybe for that 2012 model year they'll offer a S350 CGI or whatever its called by then..lol!

    We'll see because at this point I think the S550's demand may have the re-thinking everything as LJ said earlier.

    So lets see for the 2007 model year we have the S550, S600 and S65 AMG. For the 2008 model year a S63 AMG is a given from there it will be anyone's guess. There could be a S320 CDI or Bluetec which would be 50-state certified and would really be a hot item IMO, then there could be that S450 and even a S350 CGI, we'll just have see.

    BTW, I never use Google concerning MB, just their past doings and Germancarfans, MBWorld and some other sources. ;)

    M
  • stevekilburnstevekilburn Posts: 359
    LOL! I am rolling in splits. This is the funniest post from you in a long time.

    But humor aside: The reason I am strongly advocating head-to head pricing with A8 and 7 is because now is the time. This is the year of transition and new model change.

    If prices on LS 460 make a quantum leap, customers wont mind, but once you have introduced the model, its very difficult to do that. In between model changes you can only do incremental additions.

    LS is currently 22% cheaper than 750. I suggest it should make a quantum leap of 12% this fall and then keep increasing prices in increments in following years to bring in line with 750i and 750Li to make up for the remaining 10%.

    I am sure when Lexus is educated properly along these lines they will be convinced and success will kiss their feet. :D
  • stevekilburnstevekilburn Posts: 359
    LS has beaten european helms in every measure except driving dynamics and heritage. In fact in heritage, only mercedes has some kind of distinct superiority. A8 was introduced in 1994 (1997 in North America) and 7-series came about in 1978.
  • yak54yak54 Posts: 72
    Saw the Ls460 in ATL on Friday and was not impressed with the front seat room, I like the Bmw 750i for room and performance. I was going to go with the LS for quality reasons, but I am a big guy. The Ls460 is smaller up front than the current Ls. Thinking about getting my deposit back and going for the 750i sport package I am very comfortable in that car. What do you think?
  • stevekilburnstevekilburn Posts: 359
    I never questioned profits and share price and market value.

    My argument is not centered on profits, but a paradigm shift in essence of LS. The transition from "value HELM" to "premium HELM" is about a paradigm shift, a transformation into a new era, and this is the year to do it.

    New LS 460 will be able to justify quantum leap in price increases in line with A8 and 7.

    In fact lexus must not sleep on its success, but watch out for complacence and overconfidence. Just because profits and shares are sky high today does not mean we should go to bed.
  • stevekilburnstevekilburn Posts: 359
    Business model must evolve with time. Times are changing and business should transform itself to reflect those changes.

    "Comparable to S": I never said that. You should read my post MORE CAREFULLY. I said bring price in line with A8 and 750i, in 70-72K range. Thereby still having more than 10,000$ price advantage over S550.
  • stevekilburnstevekilburn Posts: 359
    There will always be exceptions on both sides so dont worry too much about these incongruities. Look at the big picture and you will realize the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Remember?
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Really sorry to hear that. I am 6'2" and am looking forward to driving the LS 460 in the Fall. Sometimes you really have to spend a lot of time adjusting the seat to get it right-you just can't do it in a few minutes.

    i suggest when the car comes out, spend an hour or so at the dealer's adjusting the seat in the showroom vehicle. You may change your mind.

    I spent a lot of time adjusting my 545's comfort seat until I got it right.
    I'm sure there is a combination of settings in the Lexus which would work for you given the time to experiment and find it.
  • stevekilburnstevekilburn Posts: 359
    Gary please dont get upset. We are all having fun here and you should have a coffee and a muffin to lighten you up.

    I am not Jack Welch and you are not stupid. Lets move on to HELMs.

    Regarding focus groups and research, yes it can provide some information, but we are talking about a new era and the next rung of HELM leadership. Times have changed and the principles of "value" are good for Toyota, but LS should move in a different zone.
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    Saw the Ls460 in ATL on Friday and was not impressed with the front seat room, I like the Bmw 750i for room and performance. I was going to go with the LS for quality reasons, but I am a big guy. The Ls460 is smaller up front than the current Ls. Thinking about getting my deposit back and going for the 750i sport package I am very comfortable in that car. What do you think?

    I haven't even seen let alone sat in the LS460, but in the current LS430, if the top cushion of the seat is set forward, the car can seem small for a big guy without any indication of the reason why. The forward positioning of seat cushion is not obvious and could have been done by a previous occupant who was just playing with the seat controls.

    You might want to check this out very carefully before you make a decision on just that assumption. I saw the same thing happen to my 6'5" cousin (who owns an Avalon); he got in my LS430, moved the whole seat all the way back, and said he still couldn't fit in it. Then I slid back the seat cushion, and lo and behold he was fine.

    Of course, the BMW 750 is a nice car, too. And there will be the option of the LS460L, which might fit you better.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    "I am sure when Lexus is educated properly..."

    We should all be so properly educated as the brilliant folks creating and running the dynamic Lexus business model in real time-one of the greatest success stories in the history of world business and it just keeps getting better.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Exactly how I set my 545 seat. I found that moving the top cushion back actually gave me more legroom.

    You have to spend the time in the showroom to experiment with the seat.

    Funny, when I test drove a GS 10 months ago, the seat was so poorly adjusted, when I pressed the start button, the steering wheel began moving up from a very low position and almost converted me from a baritone to a soprano, if you catch my drift. Scary!!
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    LOL! I am rolling in splits. This is the funniest post from you in a long time.

    I'm glad you enjoyed it, steve.

    I am sure when Lexus is educated properly along these lines they will be convinced and success will kiss their feet.

    Uh oh . . . there you go again. "When Lexus is properly educated!!!???" From YOU?? "Success will kiss their feet!!!???" Sure, steve, Lexus is hardly successful NOW. Maybe if YOU educate them, they will become successful. BTW, you are not a psychopath are you? Or delusional? ;)

    TagMan
  • stevekilburnstevekilburn Posts: 359
    my gawd, now you are calling me psychopath and delusional, where is edmunds police I wonder?

    I should have used "more successful" instead of "success" because you and I know Lexus is very successful already.

    It actually comes around as shocking to me how some guys "automatically assume" and EXPECT LS to provide with value largesse but dont NATURALLY expect the same from germans. How funny? All kinds of shaky arguments like build-cost advantage, new brand, soft ride etc etc are put forth.

    I read a comment on this thread recently which goes, "If Lexus charges same as Audi and BMW, why should I go with LS?" as if LS is some kind of step-child which always deserves a back-seat. Hmm!! May be I SHOULD Write a letter to Lexus after all. ;)
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