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High End Luxury Cars

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Comments

  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Give me another few months and I may even like the new S in silver!

    How about you, Merc1?


    Well I already "like" the car well enough. The European press has declared it the best car in the world already, but like many here they have a problem with the wheel arches. I'm just glad the quality and engineering of the car is much more improved over the current car. For me the wheel arches don't ruin the whole car like the certain things on other Mercedes' like the 2003-2005 CLK. If the wheel arches are much of an issue there is always the AMG Sport package, which much better intergrate with the wheel arches imo. Can't wait to see what the U.S. press will say about the wheel arches...I can already hear them now.

    M
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,662
    "its just that I don't see how anyone who fancies any type of Lexus (regarding styling) or LS430 by saying it has a "classic look" can talk about styling."

    In other words if someone doesn't see it your way or the way a bunch of geeks who think they know it all in auto mags sees things - then they don't know anything about styling. Sure.

    "Then there are the far out theories about who influenced who when there is no evidence to support it - when it comes to the S' wheel arches."

    So a major competitor changes pace and the competing company is not influenced?? That's not a far out theory - that is business 101! Let me put it more clearly - BMW enhances their designs from a svelte look to a massive look. MB feels a need to react - the wheel arches are - IMO - part of the response. It was not the result of any copying - it was a reaction to do something as a result of the actions of a competitor. In some cases it is "he said A - I'll say A louder". In others it's "he said A, I'll say B". The wheel arches are the B.

    " Other things are more important to me than having a Mercedes-Benz, believe it or not"

    The point is that when you had the opportunity to buy a car you opted for something else rather than the brands you fancy. It comes down to spending I understand - of course. But if you are going to drop - say $25K on a car you can find a new or pre-owned German car or a new or pre-owned something else. You chose the latter and that speaks volumes to me.
  • whether merc1 drives a MB,a go cart or even a radio flyer i have yet to encounter another individual that knows more about MB than him. his knowledge of the auto industry and MB in particular exceeds that of all of the posters on this board. that speaks volumes to me. :P

    just noticed the Audi A8 was rated 9.8 at the top of the page. :)
  • Your Comment speaks volumes to me also.
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    I hesitate to add any more fuel to the fire, especially when people are being relatively civil in their disagreements, but thought you all might be interested in the following article from the current TIME magazine (Global Business Supplement). Yes, that's yours truly quoted in the seventh and last paragraphs. The writer contacted me based on my posts on Edmunds.

    Hopefully, you all will nevertheless let me continue to be a "bridge of peace" between the G-fans and the J-fans.

    And since after posting his story on Edmunds' Luxury Performance Sedans board, markcincinnati was offered an improved leasing deal by Audi to walk from his then-pending Infiniti order, maybe MB will give me a free new S to welcome me back into the Benz family - whaddya' think?
    Can Mercedes Be a Star Again?
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    My point is not to start another debate about Lexus and Mercedes, its just that I don't see how anyone who fancies any type of Lexus (regarding styling) or LS430 by saying it has a "classic look" can talk about styling. IMO of course anyone that thinks a LS430 has a "classic" look simply doesn't really have a handle on what good looking styling is. It would be like me slamming an Japanese luxury brand for reliability when Mercedes is lacking that area. I wouldn't have any room to talk.

    Merc1, while I totally enjoy your posts and respect your knowledge and [most of your] opinions, the basis of this continuing styling jab just misses me. Sure, knock Lexus and call it a styling copycat for the current LS, but to say its styling is so terrible when it so resembles previous generation MBs that you profess to like just makes no sense to me. For example, compare the rears of the LS and the S below. How can you say one is great and the other terrible?

    PS-- Yes the one on the left is mine.

    <img src="Y:\Program Files\palmOne\TreoG\Photos\BackupForInternal\Photo_081305_002.jpg
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    You might want to check your hosting\linking there. No pic.
  • It would be a great deal...If Mercedes gave you a Near new 04...The Pretty S Class. With free maintance, of course.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    In other words if someone doesn't see it your way or the way a bunch of geeks who think they know it all in auto mags sees things - then they don't know anything about styling. Sure.

    No in other words if someone thinks a LS430 has a classic look I wouldn't turn to them for a styling critique. If that thing has a classic look then everything else in the class is drop dead gorgeous. You talk about how the industry sees things until its time to talk about Lexus styling, something the industry and its buyers have been groaning about for years and years, yet it doesn't matter. Let the industry groan about Idrive or Mercedes' reliability and their dead-on right?

    Also, the jab at the car mags is the oldest excuse in the book. If they don't say what you want them to say they don't know anything and their geeks, yet when they do put your fav car in the #1 spot they are so correct. That is far to hypocritical for me. They only think they know everything when they don't praise Lexus because they aren't looking at a Lexus via your personal criteria.

    So a major competitor changes pace and the competing company is not influenced?? That's not a far out theory - that is business 101! Let me put it more clearly - BMW enhances their designs from a svelte look to a massive look. MB feels a need to react - the wheel arches are - IMO - part of the response. It was not the result of any copying - it was a reaction to do something as a result of the actions of a competitor. In some cases it is "he said A - I'll say A louder". In others it's "he said A, I'll say B". The wheel arches are the B.

    For one you haven't even seen the new S in person so how in the world would you know that it has all this heft you keep talking about? How do you know the new S has this "massive" look? This theory has no basis whatsoever because BMW's doesn't have any similar wheel arches on anything they make. Unless you have an inside track to the MB design studio this is just guesswork at best, that you're trying to pass off as some kind of quiet fact with this business 101 stuff. Why in 100+ years didn't Mercedes suscribe to the business 101 theme with design until now? Doesn't make any sense. Just because Lexus follows BMW and Mercedes' lead when it comes to everything doesn't mean these two companies (which have been competing for much longer than Lexus has been around) operate the same way. Mercedes has rarely if ever been influenced by BMW when it came to their design until the interior of this new S. Mercedes and BMW went their own ways on most things until the last few years or so, and even now they aren't nearly as dependent or influenced by each other as you'd like to imply here. Sure when one comes out with a new type of vehicle the other responds but when it comes to design they aren't nearly as influenced by each other as you think. Their products don't look anything alike, again until this new S with its BMW like interior appeared.

    All this influence talk is amazing to me because whenever it is said that Lexus is chasing BMW to try and create two of them (IS,GS) or a Mercedes (LS,SC) it isn't true, they're merely trying to be competitive, not that they were influenced by MB/BMW or trying to play catchup. Yet you think Mercedes, the original company that started the whole thing is taken so far a back by BMW to the point of coming up with these wheel arches? Ok.

    The point is that when you had the opportunity to buy a car you opted for something else rather than the brands you fancy. It comes down to spending I understand - of course. But if you are going to drop - say $25K on a car you can find a new or pre-owned German car or a new or pre-owned something else. You chose the latter and that speaks volumes to me.

    Tell me what any of this has to do with anything here? Let me guess you have to own a car to be able to talk about it's styling? You simply don't know my situation or anything else beyond what I've already mentioned here. The last time I bought anything was years ago and I didn't want a used anything at the time. Mercedes/Audi/BMW or not. Now if and when the next time I buy a car and it isn't a MB or Audi then you might have a case otherwise this is nothing more than a semi-personal jab because I dare to say your theory about MB/BMW is far-fetched at best.

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Oh thats easy, because its a poor copy of the original. Plus that particular S was designed in the late 80s for a 1991 on sale date, in other words long time ago. It isn't current anymore and even it looks dated next to the 2000 S.

    M
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    Sorry for the posting error in #10629. This was the first time I ever tried to post a pic, and I didn't realize that it just put up a link, not an upload of the file itself.

    Perhaps this will work. And merc1, I believe this is the current generation S, and the resemblance still is unmistakable. "Copycat", "derivative", "unoriginal" - any of those are potentially justifiable criticisms of the LS, but to say it's terrible but the S is beautiful, or to just call it a poor copy, is IMO just a cheap shot. In any case, I believe the people who like the style consider it "classic" in its closeness the the "classic" Ss that we all admire. I've never seen anyone from Club Lexus even try to make the argument that the LS designers gave lessons in classic styling to
    the S designers, but it certainly is clear it is the other way around.

    In any case, subject to viewing the actual car, based on pictures alone I think I have to vote for the "imitation classic" of the current LS over the very "unclassic" styling of the upcoming S, especially with regard to the wheel flares and the butt.

    Perhaps next week (at the Tokyo Auto Show) we will see if Lexus has managed to deliver a new LS that is "classic" (in the sense of clean, pleasing lines), unique, and not boring.

    image
  • docnukemdocnukem Posts: 485
    They do seem to look a lot alike. One thing I've never taken the time to notice before: why does Lexus have both the circled L and "Lexus" on the back? Surely, the circled L is unmistakable. I would think that with such a symbol, the "Lexus" is not only redundant and superfluous, but somehow (even though it adds symmetry with the LS4xx) it seems to cheapen the look. BMW, MB, Audi, and Infiniti don't do that.

    It kind of reminds me of those awful, arrogant dealers that stick their own raised plates on the trunks of the cars they sell.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Well actually that is the wrong S. The current LS430 is a throwback in design to the 1992-1999 S-Class the W140, not the current W220. You know the W140, big slab-sided one. The LS430 isn't a copy of the current S-Class. The current S-Class is still miles ahead of the current S in looks though, there is no comparison. Pics don't show it, especially with both of their behinds. ;) One is upright and square (LS) and the other smooth and sleek.

    M
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Yeah, Merc is dead right on this one. The current LS is almost a dead ringer for the W140, which ceased production in 2000 I think. The current S is much prettier than either of the others - a real stying beauty, IMO. I'm a little dubious about the new S design coming out though - it's pretty radical.....
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    First, you gotta laugh when you see the title of this thread, and where we have taken it!

    Second, something about this seemed to be "deja vu all over again", so I did a little search and found we had covered this ground pretty well (ending in a stand-off) back in July - see posts #9771-9784. Back then, we all agreed that the current LS was derived from the W140, and I didn't mean to offer that picture to say otherwise. My only point was - as docnukem seemed to pick up on - the relationship between the universally acclaimed W220 and its predecessor the W140 can also be followed between the W220 and the current LS. Put another way, if the W140 never existed and instead MB itself had come out with the body of the LS, I don't believe the MB fans would have felt so negative about that body style - and the W220 would have been as natural a successor to it as the W220 was to the W140.

    If anyone can follow this, I'll be impressed...
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    I always thought the accusation of Lexus &#147;copying&#148; was a little overrated. The only time copying bothers me is when the object being copied is poor to begin with. EMULATE the better specimens and you are on a right track.

    A while back I mentioned the Bentley butt as a proud grand daddy. Here it is below with all of the knockoffs or copycats if you will. Judge for your self but in my mind there is no doubt who the progenitor of the raised-trunk-over-fender is. Regardless, I like the motif and think it works on the models shown.

    Now, there has been resignation to the idea that Mercedes has been copied. Although they have produced some admirable designs, they have also done their share of copying, namely the &#147;Parthenon&#148; grille and mug of the earlier RRs and Bentleys, and the latter have copied and perhaps immortalized the early American radiator grille.

    Even though I have been very fond of German designs and their interpretations up until the most recent abominations, I think the Germans with the major exception of Porsche may have done the most copying when automotive history is considered in its entirety. Don&#146;t ask me to elaborate, it&#146;s just that German cars have been around longer than those of the Japanese, and I think most automotive styling has been begotten from the Americans and English, today&#146;s American designs notwithstanding.

    The Japanese have proven nothing to me in terms of styling prowess. In my opinion they have shown only glimpses of talent and have a long way to go. Their legacy is economical cars for the masses, period. They neither create nor emulate well. However, I believe they are showing signs of coming around. The Germans have had their glory days but they have to sit back and rethink what they are doing. Their direction, again with the exception of Porsche, has gone absolutely berserk and is falling apart at the seams in all manner of styling.

    But the bottom line is that all manufacturers have copied each other. The LS design is dubious because of its execution, not whether or not it copies the S. And, as I alluded to earlier, it really doesn&#146;t matter who copies who, rather, who does it best and is fortunate enough to become the paradigm. And right now there are no paradigms&#151;it&#146;s simply a free for all. I dare not mention who the exception is again.

    ;-)

    image
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    I enjoyed your post, designman. Thanks.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,662
    Agree completely.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    There have been a couple of instances in the last 20 years where Japan did some great stuff. I think most notably, the '92 Lexus SC coupe, and the '93 Mazda RX-7. In today's terms it's getting harder to slam a country for styling, because the actual styling may have come from a completely different place. The '92 SC was done at Toyota's Calty studio. The current SC was done in France, and they blew it. The new S-class was styled in...Japan.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Amazing the agreement you'll get when you say that the Germans have done most of the copying. Way to go, now the Lexus guys are going to say that the S-Class is a knockoff of a Bentley to excuse the LS430 I guess. ;)

    I truly hate to disagree with you on design because usually you're right on the money, but there is no way I can go for this. The Japanese will copy any and everything that is a success and something things that aren't. Mazda's original Miata was the most shameless Lotus Elan copy the world had ever seen. I mean the car was an exact duplicate. It took a German brand 15 more years to do something even close to that, VW's Jetta. I don't ever recall MB/BMW/Audi ever copying an enitre body from anyone, especially the Japanese in the way Lexus did with the LS430/W140 S-Class.

    The difference with the above pics is that no one is going to mistake a Benz for a Bentley or a Acura for a Benz. Why? Because though their butts may be similar they aren't whole body style copies like the LS430 is compared to the W140 S-Class. That is where similarities end between what the German automotive industry has done regarding design vs the Japanese. The Japanese take whole bodies and clone them while others (including the Germans) take an single trait or theme and run with it, in some cases. Big, big difference.

    In looking at those pics of the Bentley its rear isn't even the same as the other cars because the trunklid doesn't sit on top of the bodywork clamshell style like on the Maybach and S-Class.

    All manufacturers have not copied each other either. IMO, that is nothing more than an excuse to excuse the Japanese from their cluelessness of design and need to copy everyone else. Mercedes, BMW, Audis and Jaguars are distinctive cars known the world over and it would all but impossible to confuse one for the other. You put a LS430 next to a 1999 S500 and the to the uninitiated the two cars looks more alike than any BMW looks like any Mercedes or any Mercedes looks like a Bentley or Audi, not matter what their butts look like.

    Whats even worse is that now you have the Koreans who will copy any and everything they can. They've copied Mercedes' grille, the Lexus RX330, Mercedes ML and countless other European designs. Wait, it gets worse...you have the Japanase copying the Japanese also. Look at a Mazda 6 and a Acura TSX, check out their grilles. Ridiculous. This inbred copying is why the Lexus GS and Maxima have been called twins.

    Sorry, but the there no way the German makes have ever taken copying to such a level as the Japanese and now Koreans. The German cars for better or worse are still far more original and distinctive than Asian cars. There is no comparison to the level of copying the Japanese have done over the years.

    If there is one thing the Japanese have a bigger legacy than the Germans, it is in the art of copying...something the German can't even begin to match.

    First the Aston-Martin incident and now this? What is going on designman? :confuse:

    M
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