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High End Luxury Cars

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  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Plus, building some badass automobiles that easily top BMW and the rest in many ways...not to mention one ultra successful and heritage laden motorsport program causing some serious concern down the autobahn in Munich. Who is the true "sport luxury" brand now? Actually, if you look at various vehicle comparisions from the many auto rags over the last couple of years, Audi has easily won the majority against BMW in the various classes of direct comparisions. This is what BMW centers its existence on, isn't it?

    You've got a good point there. Audi isn't much of a threat (yet, perhaps) to BMW in the U.S., but they definitely are a top rival in the world stage. Quattro Gmbh is also a more direct competitor to Motorsport than AMG is. Most AMGs are rocket fast, but not usually "sports cars" in the way Audi RS cars are. Watching the CL65 try to get around the Top Gear track was pretty humorous. As they put it "in the corners it turns into just a regular Mercedes".

    The RS4 managed a 1:25 lap time, a second faster than the Z4M and M5. More importantly, Clarkson, who usually hates Audis, said it was better than the M3.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    I was under the impression that Audi already outsells BMW on a worldwide basis. Does anyone know if that's accurate?
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    Yes syswei, Audi outsells BMW. Primarily on the heels of the A6, the world's best selling premium car, followed be the A4(and it's 11 variants, 6 of which we can't get).

    Audi is one of those compannies that you have to watch. Even with the many posters who shall remain nameless say that Audi isn't a true or "tierless" HELM, the maker is on a big path to spread it's talent. Starting with the RS4, the RS 6 which will be here next spring(with the Gallardo's 510hp/500lb ft V10 and dry-sump), and the R8/10/12. The company is very serious about head-butting MB in the sport class.

    Then you have the '09 A7, which will feature a CLS-esque design cue and S7 variant, and of course the big kahuna, the new '09 A8. This car's base form will be a 4.2L 450-hp V8, followed by the S8 600hp V12(this go around), and a 400hp/710lb-ft of torque uber-clean V12 TDI w/ Micro Trap.

    I have nothing but astounding confidence in this maker. The company has demonstrated the talent and know-how in manufacturing world-class cars. But......

    BMW won't sit idley. The new 7 is coming, along with a first ever M7. The 3-Series is getting a bump in hp over the 300 mark for '07, and the refreshed 5 is due in '08. The successor to the Z8 is also on the books....

    Maybe this is why the Germans posted the strongest gains in history this quarter, especially with the blazen new product over at MB.....
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    OAC, my fellow car nut, you've hit an all time low. First you gather info on a unreliable German mag from 3 years ago, then secondly you posted something from a mag that is now defunct??? Not the best thing to do if what you're doing is to prove me wrong..... The old tumble cycle on the dryer is wearing out, don't ya think?

    I've got one. Again, how is that a "tierless" Audi A8 outsells the LS in it's homeland Asia(Japan, Thai, and China) 3-1? In many questionaires throughout the continent, consumers see the car as nothing more than a overly large Toyota.... So much for cheap labor and switching to the "L" grille for the first time in 2004... Didn't work.
  • brightness04brightness04 Posts: 3,151
    There was once upon a time Mercedes stood for bullet-proof reliability, just like once upon a time Lexus was a value story, when it was competing with Lincoln and Candillac. . . . comes to think of it, almost every single real luxury brand had its roots in outstanding reliability compared to its contemporaries, including RollsRoyce and Bentley, both had roots in endurace races. BMW and Porsche are primarily performance brands, not luxury brands.

    Brand image and reality change over time, however. Nowadays, Mercedes is the cheap source of luxury-branded cars thanks to heavily subsidized leases. It certainly beats the alternative: extinction by trying to sell overpriced lemons :-)
  • brightness04brightness04 Posts: 3,151
    Don't you think brand new and immature dealer network has something to do with that? Audi has been in those markets for decades, whereas Lexus is brand new to Japanese home market. Audi is also made in places like China whereas Lexus is not so perhaps their government bureacrats (the majority of buyers of those cars in those countries) have to operate under those rules about domestic manufacture?
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I thought everyone knew the LS is nothing but a re-badged Toyota.
    Ya gotta hand it to 'em though-brilliant marketing scoring a bullseye at the American psyche, calling it a "Lexus".
  • houdini1houdini1 Kansas City areaPosts: 5,905
    Overly large Toyota? As opposed to a gussied up Volkswagen? Hmmm, I'll take the large Toyota thank you!!!

    2013 LX 570 2010 LS 460 2002 Tacoma 4x4

  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    Actually I am considering a Q7 for Dec purchase, to replace our LX. Unfortunately the early owners haven't had a good experience according to reports on the Q7 board (one quy says his service manager said that 30% of Q7s have been back in the shop already, and not for regular maintenance). Other possibilities are the 07 MDX or (if that looks to also have problems), a GX.
  • brightness04brightness04 Posts: 3,151
    I don't doubt that and have no figures to prove otherwise, but still...leasing doesn't apply to every single buyer and for those whom it doesn't is where price makes at least some type of difference.

    The willful blindness to lease offers really undermines the europhiles' intellectual honesty. Lease or buy, whichever is the lease expensive way of acquiring those buggers is what really matters, especially since the overwhelming majority of Mercedes are leased nowadays. MSRP on a Mercedes is no more relevant to the cost of getting one than MSRP on a Cadillacs or MSRP on jewllry . . . sure, some suckers may actually pay that or for very special specimens at very special times . . . but for the overwhelming majority, it's completely and utterly irrelevent.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I will be looking at the 2007 MDX also.
    Spy-photos appear to reveal a much more stylish truck-probably at a significantly higher price.
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    Your post is full of baloney. Here's why . . .

    once upon a time Lexus was a value story, when it was competing with Lincoln and Candillac

    WAS a value story? How 'bout IS a value story?

    comes to think of it, almost every single real luxury brand had its roots in outstanding reliability compared to its contemporaries,

    So untrue. Consider that the British luxury cars were not so reliable as you claim. It isn't until recent history that Jaguar, for example, has ever been considered a truly reliable car.

    Nowadays, Mercedes is the cheap source of luxury-branded cars thanks to heavily subsidized leases. It certainly beats the alternative: extinction by trying to sell overpriced lemons

    All just a pathetic portrayal of Mercedes Benz and what it represents, historically, present day, and as it moves into the future.

    TagMan
  • houdini1houdini1 Kansas City areaPosts: 5,905
    I would hang onto that LX. After driving it you will be disappointed in the others.

    2013 LX 570 2010 LS 460 2002 Tacoma 4x4

  • brightness04brightness04 Posts: 3,151
    APEAL != Appeal

    APEAL stands for "Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout." It's entirely different from "Initial Quality."

    IQ is a statistic study of manufacturing quality, whereas APEAL consists of many subjective fields, most of which have to do with design not manufacturing quality.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    I would hang onto that LX.

    It is a 2000, doesn't have a nav or backup camera, and it guzzles. So the thought is that we want to improve on all those things (if only slightly, as regards mpg). And the LX replacement, allegedly coming in the spring, is going to be too big for us.
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    Did you need those Lexus flip-flop seats in the back? In other words, do you need a third row? Makes a huge difference in choices.

    If you do, the MDX may be the right choice, and a new version is about to be released. Acura is known for one of the very best nav systems at any price, has a backup camera, bluetooth, fold-flat third row, and all of the latest. Its size hits a sweet spot as well. Something to consider if you need that third row.

    TagMan
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,687
    Syswei,

    You nay want to see what happens with the GX as I'm told it may move up a notch in size to the LX size and go hybrid as well. I'm still wondering if they will ever make the HPX. The LS hybrid and HPX would be my first two choices for my needs and would look great inside the garage.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    Yes we need a third row, preferably not of the Lexus design, which my wife hates. If the MDX doesn't appear to have significant first-year issues, it is probably going to be our choice.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    I don't think the GX will see significant changes for MY07...and I kind of told the family that my wife would get a new vehicle for this xmas. I still need to look into the availability of KDSS on the GX, as I hear body roll is a big problem with the standard suspension. My wife's friend actually traded in a few-month-old GX in favor of an RX because the GX's body roll made her feel unsafe.
  • Audi has come a long way, and it is because of quality.
    Nothing like an Audi, but I like Jags the best.
    How would you compare an Audi to a Jag?
    George Vreeland Hill
    :)
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,669
    APEAL != Appeal

    I know,

    "…the Automotive, Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study, which measures customer perceptions on the design, content, layout and performance of their new vehicles."

    I was attempting to point out one would think a high IQS would translate into a high “perception of the design, content, layout and performance of their new vehicle” – APEAL; but more importantly a low IQS would tarnish the APEAL.

    I gave a personal example of where that was not the case in my situation…and that ultimately the surveys are useless because they are based on an individuals expectations, not the vehicles actual quality or functionality.

    I generally prefer reviews/conclusions of “experts” such as Edmunds, C&D, etc, than an accumulated survey of auto reviews from people like my wife…(it’s always made that sound…isn’t it supposed to pull to the right…I didn’t know you had to tighten the gas cap…how do I set my seat memory position—2 years later)
  • houdini1houdini1 Kansas City areaPosts: 5,905
    They may refer to Mercedes prestige in France and other European countries. In the U.S. it is known as snob appeal!!

    2013 LX 570 2010 LS 460 2002 Tacoma 4x4

  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    Brightness, yes it is true that Toyota just recently started using the Lexus nameplate it's native Japan. But the LS has always been there, right along side the Crown. While not called the LS, the car was definetely a bold move on Toyota at the time, especially seeing how frugal their "CEO's" are there, really.

    And moreover, the A8 is not made anywhere else except Germany. No other manufacture has the support to build the precious aluminum body and quattro system. This is not to say that some parts are not domesticated from Asia, such as the optional Japanese Cherry wood interior..
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Everyone knows the LS is the car many folks (but not all) get when one can't afford the S class. It is a pure value play for a lot of people.
    Nothing to be ashamed of.
    $60-75K is no small change.

    However, many of these folks rationalize their purchase by saying the LS is much more reliable than the MB.
    What nonsense!
    I have never seen a MB, Audi or BMW stuck on the side of the road in the last 25 years.
    Folks, face the truth:
    Anybody who gets an S Class can get an LS, but not all LS buyers can step up to the price and prestige of the magnificent MB S Class- unanimously praised as one of the greatest sedans in the world-and priced accordingly.
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    I'd like to know what reports in which you may be referring to as AGS(Audi General Service) has said that the Q7 is actually in a better start than the easier to maintain A4 and both of it's platform mates, the T'Regg and the Cayenne, which was just recently given the most reliable moniker of any SUV above 50k. At bit contradictig to say the least...

    BTW: AllData also backs this up. So 30% of this supposed service manager's saying could've been in for the free complimentary Audi Accessory of the owners choice? Maybe for installation of a special order part? Of the 29k(worldwide, 4800 US) Q7's sold, wonder how many are actually "breaking down" in Lexus talk? Hardly any.
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    Smart business technique indeed. Toyota knew full well what it was doing by not slapping the golden "L" on anything Japan. Took 14 years to do it. Why do you think that is? How does a German car be the #1 car of choice in a Asian market, even more so in emerging markets?
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    the LS is the car many folks (but not all) get when one can't afford the S class. It is a pure value play for a lot of people....many of these folks rationalize their purchase by saying the LS is much more reliable than the MB.
    What nonsense!


    One could equally well say that "many S owners bought because they are insecure and needed a high-prestige car to feel better about themselves and show off to their neighbors, and then rationalize their purchase by saying they really bought not because of prestige and their own insecurities, but because of the heritage and styling of MB."
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Of course you speak the truth, but Team Lexus will tell us that Lexus is completely separate from Toyota with its own factories, parts, sales experience, showrooms, etc.

    Once more the wool has been pulled over the eyes of a segment of foolish Americans as the LS is no more than a Toyota in most of the rest of the world.

    I am not saying that the LS is not a very fine vehicle.
    Toyotas are very fine vehicles-one of the best value plays across the board-from the Corolla all the way up to the LS.
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    For sure you're talking about the Phaeton and not the A8. The A8 was designed solely by Audi. The A8 shares absolutely no body panels with the Phaeton. Audi lent VW it's expertise in the field. And Audi also coined the W12 by joining two narrow-angle V-Dub-sourced engines together to form what is the smoothest(including the ultra-hushed 4.3 Toyota V8) engine in it's class. Nice try houdini, but this magic trick failed. You know what happens when you fail continously......

    BTW: Talking about the LX and GX here. For someone wanting a bloated Toyota, take the 4-Runner and add 3 inches of roof and , viola, you have a GX470, tipsy-turvy and all.

    Even more simpler, add different lights and an "adaptive" air-suspension to the Land Cruiser, and viola, we can charge an extra 15k and call it a LX470. Nice trick, but no one's amazed......
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    "Nice trick"

    Toyota hit a home run with their sociological/psychological analysis of the American consumer.

    If they can rebadge a Land Cruiser with a few minor upgrades, charge an extra 15k and call it a Lexus LX470, more power to them.
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