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High End Luxury Cars

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  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    It isn't off topic because the 600hL is coming.

    Is 101k miles too high a breakeven? The life of the average car is 113k (source), and I would suggest that anything less than 113k as a breakeven is economically justified.

    But you should also be asking a few other questions:

    1. What breakeven is suggested by the CR mpg results? Answer: 81k miles (at the R&T pr/gal of 2.62). Average of R&T and CR: 92k miles.

    2. Is $2.62 a realistic price of gasoline over the life of the car? Answer (imho): no. At $3.50 (I paid $3.65 just last week!), breakeven is 76k per R&T, 61k per CR. At $4.50 (bless Hubbert's peak), breakeven is 59k per R&T, 47k per CR.

    3. Does the breakeven analysis measure cost/benefit to the environment? Answer: no.

    All this being said, as I've posted before, I don't believe that hybrids in their current form are going to take the world by storm. But the technology is young so imho we will see it improve substantially, in size, weight, and economics.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Yes. The obvious fly in the ointment is the $2.62 price per gallon R&T claimed they had paid. In California, no less!
    I can't remember the last time I paid $2.62!
    Sure wish I could get my hands on a R&T discount card!
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Sorry, but I remain a Team Europe Hybrid Naysayer.

    You can now put Ford on your team. There was some news this week that Ford is dropping its plans to make 250,000 hybrids by 2010, and they are going to focus more on diesels and other tech instead.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    Actually I am pretty impressed by the hybrid mpg results from both R&T and CR. R&T for instance puts the hybrid Camry at 42% better mpg than the V6 SE; CR puts the hybrid at 48% better than the V6 and 42% better than the I4. (Both tests were in mixed highway/city driving.) With some of the naysaying in the press, one might have expected worse. There is hope yet for how hybrid (even current-technology hybrid) is going to be perceived against 2007 clean diesel...and we still don't know how much "clean diesel" is going to cost per gallon at the pump..."regular diesel" in my particular area seems to cost more than premium....and is less widely available.

    Oh yes, and for the environmentalists, including naysayers on hybrid batteries, this from R&T:

    Our three hybrids qualify in California as AT-PZEVs, Advanced-Technology Partial Zero Emissions Vehicles. Their Honda and Toyota siblings are ULEV-2s, meeting the second phase of Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle standards. The gasoline Escape is a Low Emissions Vehicle, Phase 2.

    To put these in perspective, a LEV is roughly 90 percent cleaner than a pre-emissions-controlled car. A ULEV raises this to about 96 percent. It has been noted that a ULEV literally scrubs the air of a typical urban environment. An AT-PZEV is more than 25 percent cleaner still, bringing its reduction well into the 99-percent range. By almost any measure, hybrids offer significant environmental payoff.

    What about hybrid batteries? Aren't they an environmental tradeoff? At first, this was something of an unknown. But our earliest Honda Insights and Toyota Priuses are now into their sixth year (eighth, in their home market). Indications are that battery packs are lasting the life of the car; that is, they're every bit as durable as gasoline engines. What's more, the recycled value of their nickel is high, and a secondary market of reconditioned batteries is evolving.
    source
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Smart move by Ford.

    Now if only Ford would banish those dreadful Taylor Hicks "possibilidy" commercials!
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I read that the HSD system won't let the battery completely drain, or charge fully, and that greatly increases the life of the batteries. It does seem that initial fears of expensive battery replacements are unwarranted.

    Clean diesel fuel will probably cost the same as, or more than premium gasoline in most areas. Additionally, the cars will probably cost at least a few $K more than gasoline versions, similar to hybrids. The difference really comes down to what kind of driving you do. Hybrids will be more efficient in the city, diesels on the highway.

    For now, I'll just stick to making sure that my tires are always fully inflated. I know I'd get better mileage if I slowed down a bit, but there's no cure for leadfootitis.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Now if only Ford would banish those dreadful Taylor Hicks "possibilidy" commercials!

    Hahaha, yeah those are really awful. It's just plain wierd seeing ol' Dieter driving a Charger.
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    "...Additionally, the cars will probably cost at least a few $k more than gasoline versions, similar to hybrids..."

    As far as pricing goes, I'm willing to bet that prices for "clean diesel" cars will stay in tact. For example, MB has stated several times that the E320 CDI Blutec will remain at it's $50k price point(even the E550 will remain at similar price despite gaining 80-hp and a freshened interior and exterior for '07), despite it's cleaner-than-hybrid/gas powertrain and world-first mass-produced 0-emission diesel soot. And GM and BMW have both vowed to introduce there technology at a cost comparible to their competitors.

    For the price of low-sulfur diesel, in Europe it's $5/gallon, what it's been for the past decade. Most of it is taxes/duty. But gasoline is pricier there now, hence the recent surge in diesel purchases there. And by '10, the EPA says that low-sulfur diesel will be the only diesel in the US, sort of like switching from lead to unleaded gas.

    Hybrids: I think that the technology will be around for some time to come. But is it our saving grace in it's current form. Probably not. But with many domestic and Euro makes playing with the notion of diesel-hybrid, the sky is the limit...

    FWIW, Ford please buy out the contracts of Taylor Hicks and Toby Keith and stop making a mockery of yourselves. And DCX, Deiter!?!?! GM, well, I don't know......
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    It fairly obvious that Hybrid technology will evolve, just like high-octane unleaded gas, abs technology, and aerodynamics.

    Toyota has already stated a 100-MPG goal for the next Prius in 2010!

    The batteries will get smaller, and find a less intrusive location, like under the back seat.

    Honda will adopt Toyota's approach, like shutting off the engine at idle, with their own innovative spins and variations. Like Toyota did with VTec.

    And diesel may be the next great alternative, but it's an uphill climb, as Americans are about as fond of diesels as they are of station wagons. :sick:

    Anything that is more efficient, AND more powerful, and more eco-friendly, is gonna be worth a premium.

    The RX330 was less powerful and less efficient than the RX400h. Now with the RX350, the power advantage is gone. Sales have slumped for the 400h. :cry:

    If Lexus really does make the GT500 out of Carbon fiber, and reaches it's alleged target weight of 2600lbs., this game is truly over!

    I still want a stick, doh! ;)

    DrFill
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    If Lexus really does make the GT500 out of Carbon fiber, and reaches it's alleged target weight of 2600lbs., this game is truly over!

    Which game would that be? Please elaborate. I hope you realize this is not a tiddleewinks match they’re entering with this car. It’s a major league tryout.

    Where did you get the speculation on the target weight? For the record, this is something everyone would welcome since performance cars have been putting on weight like McDonald’s eatin’ Americans. Weight is an enemy and with that engine profile it will HAVE to be light to yield competitive dragstrip times for sale on the street, a place where the high revvers have not been successful.

    A V8 Ferrari F430 weighs 3196 and a 6 cyl Porsche GT3 weighs 3075. A V10 Lexus GT 500 will weigh 2600? A salute, Don Corleone!

    Indeed it is a very interesting car at this point. But doc, no thanks on the Kool Aid. I’d like a Pellegrino if you have it. If not a glass of ice water would be fine… with apologies to my man Oac.

    ;-)
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    In the appropriate forum, you will find the approapriate story, with the appropriate source, stating the intended goal.

    Does it sound a little far-fetched? Yeah!

    They aren't turning a Corolla into a $150k car. This thing is as big as the competition, and will need the requisite NVH sound-deadening, a V-10 engine, safety-tech up to wazoo, 19" rims, Lexus-level luxury trappings, plus a suspension that can handle a 200MPH potential drivetrain.

    Not what I would call "Easy as Lexus".

    But, as I've said before, if anyone can turn the "Can do" attitude into reality, it is Team Lexus! :D

    The way I see it, anything south of 3k is a prodigious achievement! :shades:

    That and getting the Evo X under 3k too.

    DrFill
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    A V8 Ferrari F430 weighs 3196 and a 6 cyl Porsche GT3 weighs 3075. A V10 Lexus GT 500 will weigh 2600? A salute, Don Corleone!

    The projected Lexus GT is a 4.5L V10 GT450, not a GT500. I noticed Doc made the same mistake. I don't see how this car can be that lithe to come under 3000Ib. That would be in the Lotus Elise territory.

    Indeed it is a very interesting car at this point. But doc, no thanks on the Kool Aid. I’d like a Pellegrino if you have it. If not a glass of ice water would be fine… with apologies to my man Oac.

    Interesting indeed ! According to press reports, the car will scoot to 60 from a standstill in 4s flat. It may not have the bopper HP of the SL, but it sure can move as fast ! At 200mph top speed and a 12K rpm range to roam, the car will be a serious contender when it gets here next yr. And no kool aid necessary, my dear Designman, like u I like Pellegrinos :)
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    My sources tell me it'll be 5 liters, not 4.5. And I am confident in that, as it would make little sense to make a V10 smaller than the corporate V8.

    If they will bother to make a V10, they would bother to make it slightly larger displacement, and getting 500HP sounds like the goal. I expect similar power numbers to the M5/M6.

    Regarding the weight, I'd expect a goal of 3000, not 2600 lbs.

    DrFill
  • pg48477pg48477 Posts: 309
    I don’t see why many people are so exited about upcoming GT450 or 500? From what we know so far it no better then 911 Turbo or any other car in it’s class and it’s few years away. I also don’t see this car weight below 3000lbs more like above 3500lbs. It is a Lexus and main goal is luxury not performance, unless they decided to turn their back on all other Lexus out there and make their flagship car an ultra performance machine????. Next, no way in the world they will make V10 with 12000 rpm range, and if they do, they’ll have to put another 500lbs of isolation to keep the noise down. Also, 500HP on 150K car is nothing out of this world even 70K Corvette has 500HP. I just don’t see anything in this car that has that wow factor, not one thing. No one in the right state of mind will buy this car at 150K over competition, unless you have so much money to burn and want to have everything that is out there. At lease Acura will supposedly have a mid engine in the upcoming NSX with “super handling AWD” and should corner like it’s on rails.
    If Lexus trying to boost their image in the performance category, they need to start making current “sport sedans” GS and IS more sporty, by offering better suspension and a shutoff switch for idiotic VDM system (or whatever it’s called).
    What Toyota does have is lot’s of money, but why waste it on GT? Give the money to the poor:)
    :mad:
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    I completely agree with you on this one. On one hand there is the 505hp ZO6, the 911 Turbo, and even the MB SL65 that gets to 60 in under 4 secs without the need of 10 cyl. And on the other hand, you have yet another "contender" that is entering the very crowded field of GT cars.

    I'm sure the Lexus will be a great addition to the line, but is it the car that is supposed to shut down all others. Hardly, especially since all three cars that I aformentioned have a long roster of racing heritage and technology. With all of Lexus' emphasis on luxury over sport, this car will indeed tip the scales over 3500 pounds, more for the supposed AWD.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,687
    Since when is having more competition bad??
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I completely agree with you on this one. On one hand there is the 505hp ZO6, the 911 Turbo, and even the MB SL65 that gets to 60 in under 4 secs without the need of 10 cyl. And on the other hand, you have yet another "contender" that is entering the very crowded field of GT cars.

    I'm not sure what your point is, here. Yes the Vette and Viper as well make 500+hp, and instead of state-of-the-art V-10s, they've got massive pushrod lumps. I dont see how that makes them "better". The Viper has what, 60hp per litre, from a truck engine? That might've been impressive 30 years ago. If you're somehow trying to say that less cylinders, regardless of cc, is always better, why did you include the SL65? It doesn't need a V-10, it needs a V-12.

    I don't see how additional competition is somehow bad for auto enthusiasts. Have any of us said the Lexus GT is going to shut down Porsche, or Ferrari?
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    I don’t see why many people are so exited about upcoming GT450 or 500?

    I don’t think many people are excited about it at this point. But apparently it’s a different car and one of a kind. High revving cars are a hoot to drive so this is one of the reason why I can’t help but notice it.

    Next, no way in the world they will make V10 with 12000 rpm range, and if they do, they’ll have to put another 500lbs of isolation to keep the noise down.

    Well, aural testimony has it sounding like an F1 engine so I put a certain amount of credence in this. Also, the novelty buyers, the must haves who get it for the street won’t be redlining it anyway. They’ll step on the gas at a stoplight, wonder where the power is, then trade it in for an SL with nary a clue of what the engine is about.

    The street is one thing, the Lexus GT has high-speed track potential at least on paper so I am interested in seeing what becomes of it, unlike the M5 which really belongs on the street but has an engine that is better suited for track.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Have any of us said the Lexus GT is going to shut down Porsche, or Ferrari?

    Well, doc did in so many words, heh heh, incendiary words…

    If Lexus really does make the GT500 out of Carbon fiber, and reaches it's alleged target weight of 2600lbs., this game is truly over!

    By the way I neglected to mention the V10 Carrera GT which is carbon fiber and weighs 3043.

    I agree with competition being the best possible scenario. I think a current example of this is the Z4 M Roadster and Coupe. Porsche unexpectedly went ahead and put the Cayman engine in the 07 Boxster S giving it a 15 hp boost.

    I don’t think the Lexus GT will break the cash registers but neither did the Acura NSX which was an awesome car. I think the best scenario would be for the Lexus to accomplish something in racing and put real sport alternatives in their lineup.

    Yep, the more performance cars the better. Let them fight it out with power and price. Healthy competition rules, and Lexus will certainly get my applause if it brings this unique buzz bomber to the table.
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    You truly are world-renowned for hearing what you want to here (from Me)!

    Even I, ruthless leader of Team Lexus, expressed a measure of disbelief in this latest Auto news story.

    But I couldn't, in my right mind, disregard it as fantasy, as we all have see the spy photos, and videos of this future Lexus Supercar.

    All I'm sayin' is, as they did with the Legend that was Supra, if they want to make the best sports car, or Supercar, in the World, I wouldn't dare say they couldn't.

    The World has changed since June 1993, but Toyota/Lexus has only changed for the better.

    I wouldn't bet against them. ;)

    DrFill
  • pg48477pg48477 Posts: 309
    I can see a point for Acura to develop new NSX as they always tried to sell “sporty cars”. Lexus on the other hand is a cruiser company emphasizing on luxury, in fact sport is not in the top 10 priorities of Lexus. There is no doubt Toyota can produce competitive car in the GT class, I just don’t see the point. Well, maybe one. Lexus need to create a name for itself in Europe and nice GT entry just might do it. Reliability in not the firs priority overseas so high revving V10 will fit right in.

    PS Again, no way GT will have 12000 RPM V10 and no way this car will weight 2600lbs; just my opinion.
  • pg48477pg48477 Posts: 309
    " The World has changed since June 1993, but Toyota/Lexus has only changed for the better."

    If you mean soft and blend is better, you might just have something there. In 1990s Toyota and Honda were on the top of the world with the best products available. Today, they do not produce anything to brag about, so as far as I’m concerned Toyota changed for worse. They do make a lot of money, though.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    We are s'posed to be talking about the high end marques, not getting into debates about the manufacturers and their less-than-high-end models ...
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,687
    "Lexus on the other hand is a cruiser company emphasizing on luxury, in fact sport is not in the top 10 priorities of Lexus"

    Lexus is all of 16 years old, is very profitable and is a part of a juggernaut that can build any car it wants to. Do you really think their strategy is as cut and dry as your post after only 16 years of life and having access to pockets that are far deeper than anyone elses. Did you ever hear of a LT strategic plan that evolves over time? They are just starting to branch out.
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,687
    "Today, they do not produce anything to brag about, so as far as I’m concerned Toyota changed for worse. They do make a lot of money, though."

    And the reason for making so much money is that they are better than ever and they make cars that more and more people buy and repeat buy every year. Buying is the ultimate bragging.
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    "...why did yo0u include the SL65?"

    Retraction needed; meant to say SL55. And you're once again downgrading the brilliant engine technology that American engines have used for over 100 years: Pushrods. The engines are so staid yet C6-R and Viper GTS-R will shred the European comp to a pulp, the C6 winning countless accolades. Japanese comp? We're still waiting.....
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    “All I'm sayin' is, as they did with the Legend that was Supra, if they want to make the best sports car, or Supercar, in the World, I wouldn't dare say they couldn't.”

    “I wouldn't bet against them.”


    I’m not betting against them and yes they can do anything they want. The problem is they really don’t want to. Toyota sport is flash in the pan. Where is the Supra, Celica? Where is the MR2, another great little car? And don’t tell me they had good runs. Where are the successors to these cars?

    They don’t stick with a plan and I expect the Lexus GT will be no different. They fall back on snoozers. With their resources they can perpetuate sport models even if they are not as profitable. But they choose not to because sport just isn’t in their blood. There’s no real commitment to it. Toyota/Lexus sport is like miniature golf.

    Does someone looking to spend $150k on a real sports car want to buy from a company with that type of heritage? I even think most LS owners looking to spend that kind of money on a sports car would choose a Porsche or SL over the Lexus GT.

    Japanese comp? We're still waiting.....

    Amen.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Japanese comp? We're still waiting.....

    How about the Skyline GT-R?

    "The GT-R's success in motor racing was formidable, particularly in the annual race at the Mount Panorama circuit in Bathurst, Australia, where the champion three years running was a GT-R (despite receiving additional weight penalties in years two and three due to its unbeatable performance), and in the Japanese GT series where it has remained dominant up to the present day.

    No other race victories by the GT-R could escape without controversies, at the 1990 Macau Grand Prix Guia touring car race, the factory backed R32 driven by Masahiro Hasemi led the race from the start to the finishing line which caused a wave of protests by the European entrants. The following year, the car was forced to carry a weight penalty of 140 kg very much to his frustration and had to settle for fourth place against the top three DTM specification race winning BMW M3 and Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.5-16 Evolution II. The GT-R's success at Mount Panorama in 1991 and 1992, both by Jim Richards, led to a change in formula regulations, which came to exclude turbocharged and four-wheel-drive cars in subsequent years. It also led indirectly to a move to the Super Touring Car category in the JTCC and the creation of the JGTC grand touring car series in Japan, where GT-Rs can only compete in rear-wheel drive form - and still win."

    The Skyline has dominated racing for 30+ years. It was so good that the Europeans had to whine "unfair! unfair!" and get the Skyline crippled so they could at least have a chance.
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    And with all that said, we're still waiting on the car here in the States. I've driven the car in Osaka, and to tell you the truth, the car is wicked fast with a very capable suspension to match. I'm very aware of it's many award-winning races and it's legendary heritage for over 30 years. This car may very well change the perception of how the cars in it's class are viewed.

    I'm very glad that the Japanese have finally gotten serious enough to send street versions of the race cars to the States, as with every German make. But to say it will change the face of the game is a little reaching....
  • maxhonda99maxhonda99 Posts: 1,289
    "Does someone looking to spend $150k on a real sports car want to buy from a company with that type of heritage? "

    Doesn't make much sense. You know 16 years ago people were saying pretty much the same thing about Lexus. You know it went kinda like this..."Toyota has no luxury heritage, who's gonna buy a $40K luxury Toyota?". Boy, look what happened with those types of statements.

    I'm not saying a Lexus $150K Sports Car will be successful. ONly time and sales figures will tell whether it's a success or a failure. But I will tell you the heritage B.S. is lame for one, and second Lexus has already proved a great product can overcome a lack of "heritage".
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