Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!





High End Luxury Cars

1618619621623624771

Comments

  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    This is the type of buzz and image making that Audi needs in the U.S:

    image

    This morning New Yorkers on their way to work were greeted with Audi's Park Avenue parade that marked the R8's first official drive on U.S. soil and the opening of the company's new Audi Forum located at 250 Park Avenue. Autoblog reader Ahmed M. was on hand and armed with a camera phone. He sent us these pics of the R8, R10 Le Mans racer and 1938 Auto Union Type D Silver Arrow, the latter of which was one of the world's first mid-engined racecars. NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg was reportedly on hand to deliver the R8 to the Forum, which is not a dealership but rather a brand awareness space that will educate New Yorkers on the Audi experience and can also host events up to 150 people.

    Source

    M
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    In order to be different than the German cars, Lexus is going to go down their own path, against the coming German wave of diesels, and against the publics perception.

    They've got a lot of work to do. Diesels don't run out of power when driven hard, they actually work on the highway, and they don't get their trunk space chopped in half. If the GS450h can only beat a 550i by 3mpg, its going to get crushed by a 535d. Until Toyota can fix all of those issues, pass.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Gee LG how can keep that handle with posts like that...lol?

    M
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I have no interest in posting on a Lexus forum, Dewey, because I have so little interest in their vehicles, from their slippery thin steering wheels to their tasteless in your face polished wood.
    If it wasn't for the promised pate, the vintage vino and most importantly, the tranquilized German Shepherd attack dogs, it would be a good bet that I would be a no-show.

    However, after all the hype and mixed reviews, I am a bit curious to try the LS for myself.
    I do want to check out the rear and see if it's any less ugly than its cousin, the ghastly Camry.
  • houdini1houdini1 Kansas City areaPosts: 5,934
    I am a Lexus and Audi fan but not a hybrid fan. I think that hybrids are ridiculous and can't believe anyone would fall for such a cobbled together Rube Goldberg contraption when they could have a nice, clean, simple diesel. I don't even like the LS Hybrid. And I really can't imagine what Audi is thinking.

    I am also waiting on the first diesel wave and wondering what the EPA will do to try and stop it. I am sure they will come up with something. I can't wait to get my hands on an Accord diesel for an every day driver.

    2013 LX 570 2010 LS 460 2002 Tacoma 4x4

  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    However, after all the hype and mixed reviews, I am a bit curious to try the LS for myself.
    I do want to check out the rear and see if it's any less ugly than its cousin, the ghastly Camry.


    More accurate would be mixed "previews", as the C&D article used that word rather prominently.

    It certainly is less ugly than the S550. :D

    Few cars have been more complimented in their renewed styling than the new Camry. Well, except for the Next LS!

    DrFill
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    Doc, that little 4-cyl engine that you want them to kill accounts for about 68% of all A3/A4 sales, so I don't think they'll part with anytime soon.

    The same can be said about your car company Lexus. Why does every IS I see is an IS250, not the much better IS350? Because that particular car represents a much better value over it's more expensive variant. The same with Audi. The little 200hp 2.0T hooked with DSG beats out most 6 cyl. cars in it's class(save for the 3.5L Lexus and the new 3-Series Turbo) and it gets 34 mpg, so Doc, it's a no-brainer.


    Wonder why Mercedes, BMW, and Lexus offer no 4-bangers?

    The IS has two sixes, so I don't know why you brought it up.

    Audi is on pace to sell about 40k A4s, less than 30k would be 4-bangers. Many under $30k transcation price. Nothing to crow about, thur.

    Americans aren't paying $30k plus for 4-bangers. That's not a good long term strategy. :sick:

    DrFill
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I like the Camry from the front. From the rear, they did it better with the Avalon and ES, IMO.
  • Having just traded in my Mercedes for an Audi S8, it will be interesting to note the differences in the vehicles and the treatment from corporate. The MB dealers have treated me well, and I just received a $200 Amex card from MB for taking in my MB for a recall. I always received great treatment from Lexus too, and just received an infrared thermometer as a promotional item for the new LS460.

    I do love the little extras. :)
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    I was very surprised when I read the magazine BusinessWeek and realized I missed reading a critically important paragraph in that BMW Idea Factory article.

    One BMW staffer who has worked with the new CEO Reithofer says he "never spoke about Mercedes. He was always looking over his shoulder at Toyota.

    Over the next decade, BMW expects Lexus and Infiniti brands to set up plants in Europe and then hire German engineers to work on building cars with BMW-like handling. Within five years, predicts Reithofer, it could be "Lexus that we will be most busy competing with.


    Fascintating stuff! In other words the BMW CEO thinks Lexus and Infiniti will threaten BMW by raiding its staff of German engineers to work on cars that can out-handle BMWs.

    Isn't that what is happening now in Detroit? Are not some of the best American engineers, designers and management moving to Japanese companies?

    The key driver to BMW's success is their brilliant engineers. Once Lexus and Infiniti starts stealing their engineers then BMW will have no advantage over their Japanese competitors. In this case the CEO of BMW has every right to be worried.

    And remember this threat is not only restricted to BMW. Porsche, MB and VW/Audi may end up with the scenario of trying to keep their engineers from leaving to Japanese car makers. Unfortunately Toyota and to a certain extent Nissan have the financial resouces to pay for the best engineers in the world. Unfortunately the same cannot be said about the more financially constrained German marques. BMW and Porsche are generating amazing profit margins but both marques are not big enough in terms of size to compete with the Japanese marques.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    Congratulations Scott.

    Enjoy your amazing car.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    A sporty four-wheel-drive coupe and a svelte minivan called the Luxury Sport Cruiser are slated to roll off the production line in 2008.

    There also appears to be a possible error in that Businessweek article. A AWD coupe is currently available in the form of a BMW 328xi coupe. I think what Businessweek meant is a four door coupe from BMW that will compete with the MB CLS during 2008.

    Personally I think Jaguars would look best in the form of a four door coupe. Especially in burgundy.
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    Doc, if you think that if Audi abandoned it's 4-cyl cars that they'll look better, well I gave you a bit too much credit.

    The A4 is the only car currently in it's class that offers 4cyl, V6, and V8 engines with DSG, 5 and 6 speeds and the choice of 2 or AWD in the US. ALL other makes(save for the IS) come in 4 cylinder versions in their respective homeland. Even the Chinese CTS has a corporate Ecotec under the hood as the standard engine.

    Nothing to "crow" about maybe, especially since the IS light has dimmed considerably, no doubt on anticipation for the new twin-turbo 335i sedan and new '07 320-hp A4 3.2
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    Every word in your post is how I feel exactly. Their marketing campaigns are completely ridiculous in this country.

    Why market AWD in the SunBelt?
    Why market a Cabriolet in the state of Maine in January?
    Why show the first 3 row SUV in your lineup without any seats being utilized, and making it worst, driving down an urban street without anyone on the street?

    Point is, the public is mostly unaware of Audi's product north of the A4. Most have latched on to the ultra-posh A6, but the A8 has been left out in the cold. And at the rate they're going, the Q7 to the public looks like yet another SUV in this crowded field.

    They have to seperate themselves from VW much the way MB does from Chrylser and Lexus does with Toyota. This goes for styling options, marketing, dealers, and even some engineering that was once exclusive to Audi, altho on that one, they're on the right track developing cars that will be Audi only.
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    This is my recent reply to Doc on the LS board (which I rarely visit any more)

    Doc posted:
    If you've read any of Merc's posts over the past 5 years or so, you'd see what is wrong with Lexus'/LS' image/perception.

    My reply:
    Doc, to be honest with ya, I know very well about the Lexus image and some of the truth it is based upon . . . I'm just glad to see you would admit that there is an image problem with the Lexus. :P

    And it is certainly nice to see you using Merc's posts to substantiate your perspective. Fascinating that you suddently agree with Merc.

    Well, according to some of those past posts made by Merc, which you refer to and indicate you agree with, part of the Lexus perception/image problem is that they look too much like Toyotas.

    Perhaps the two of you are right about that. ;)

    TagMan
  • mariner7mariner7 Posts: 509
    The key driver to BMW's success is their brilliant engineers. Once Lexus and Infiniti starts stealing their engineers then BMW will have no advantage over their Japanese competitors.

    Dewey, I think that's highly unlikely. All the development engineering, even for vehicles sold exclusively outside Japan like Tundra and Titan, is done in Japan. Very unlikely many German engineers speak Japanese or want to relocate to Japan.

    But apparently Infiniti can make BMW caliber cars using its own engineers.

    The G's revised 3.5-liter V6 makes an impressive 306 hp and 268 lb-ft of torque. But those numbers only tell part of the story. The rest becomes clear as the G's tach needle blasts straight past its old 6600-rpm redline on its way to a genuinely usable 7500 rpm. Those extra 900 revs allow the true enthusiast some serious involvement that would never happen with a lesser engine. Like, say, the 3.0-liter straight-6 in BMW's 330i.

    And the G will hold its own against the 3 in any handling showdown — our slalom tests show only 0.3-mph difference between the two in the slalom. Heck, I even prefer the G's chassis over the legendary Bimmer. And that just doesn't happen very often.


    -- Edmunds editor Jacquot

    This brings up an interesting tidbit. Ferdinand Piech, who is an outstanding engineer , a grandson of Ferdinand Porsche, and is now the chairman of VAG, told the story that when he was young, he wanted to work for Honda and wrote them a letter. But he never heard back from them. History would've changed if he had made to the top at Honda!
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    Very unlikely many German engineers speak Japanese or want to relocate to Japan

    To respond to you let me repeat exactly what was posted previously:

    Over the next decade, BMW expects Lexus and Infiniti brands to set up plants in Europe and then hire German engineers to work on building cars with BMW-like handling. Within five years, predicts Reithofer, it could be "Lexus that we will be most busy competing with.

    Lexus and Infiniti may be moving to Germany and if that is the case they are going to be hiring non-Japanese-speaking German engineers from BMW, MB, Audi and Porshe. These engineers will continue living in their houses in Germany and will not be required to fight Nagoya or Tokyo traffic on their way to work. In terms of automotive engineering the Japanese are still not up to German standards. In other respects the Japanese are ahead.

    Also there is not one comparison review between the new G35 and dated BMW330i that indicated the G35 is an overall superior car. Now the new Infiniti G35 will have to compete with a superior BMW335i. I think it is very easy to predict which car will end up being a first choice.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    Anybody who lines up a Camry, Avalon, ES and LS from behind can see these cars look too much alike.
    It's about time that the ES and LS have a handsome distinctive look of their own.
    Otherwise people like me will constantly be banging away that Lexus vehicles are nothing more than Toyotas with some upgrades.
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    I don't know Dewey. It appears that the line has been tightened like never before between the two arguably best in class.

    In the November edition of C&D, the fav. mag to be talked about around here, has said that the BMW coupe's chassis doesn't feel quite as planted as the old 330i sedan, thus making it have a slight ponderous feel. The front tires no longer bites into apexes like before and give up traction way to early. The 0-60 times of both cars in manual transmission-equipped models may be identical, especially when the new G-Coupe gets here, as it will be lighter than the BMW.

    But this is not to say it won't retain it's crown. Just not easily so like some would have it, particularly with an onslaught of new competition from Audi, Caddy, and MB.

    It will just have to work harder. I do hope like hell they won't box Active Steering w/ Sport pkg, as this will be a virtual sucide. A 335iCoupe with SportPack, 6-speed, sans i-Drive, black/tan combo all for around $45k? Our car has arrived, as far as coupes are concerned....
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Hey I still like the company, but I'm a realist. I'm not one of those Lexus fanatics with blinders on who thinks that Toyota will one day be the world's only car company.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Also there is not one comparison review between the new G35 and dated BMW330i that indicated the G35 is an overall superior car. Now the new Infiniti G35 will have to compete with a superior BMW335i. I think it is very easy to predict which car will end up being a first choice.

    The last G35 lost one comparo to the BMW in C&D, but won another on price advantage. The M45 has won every C&D comparo against the 5, on a price equal level and on an equipment equal level, so there can be no more whining about the 530i's unfair loss.

    The inevitable G35S vs. 335i test is going to be a very close race, probably decided by 1 or 2 points. If BMW decides to send a car with AS and iDrive, they'll lose. If the BMW comes without them, it may or may not win. It all depends on how much weight C&D puts into the G's interior space advantage, superior NAV, and price advantage.
  • houdini1houdini1 Kansas City areaPosts: 5,934
    Well LG you've done it now. Please prepare yourself for either deafening silence or a firestorm of that spinning and whining you mentioned. I have considered replacing my 350Z with a G35 but just haven't been able to do it.

    2013 LX 570 2010 LS 460 2002 Tacoma 4x4

  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I have considered replacing my 350Z with a G35 but just haven't been able to do it.

    I'd wait for a few more years. There will be a new Z, a new Supra, and a new S2000. Mazda must have something up their sleeve as well, because they won't want to be left out of the new Japanese sports car fight. The only player not likely to return is Mitsubishi.
  • houdini1houdini1 Kansas City areaPosts: 5,934
    Yes, I read somewhere that the new Supra was slated to start at around $30,000. I would be careful with that one. They may be trading on the name with not much substance. Sort of sell you a Celica and call it a Supra.

    2013 LX 570 2010 LS 460 2002 Tacoma 4x4

  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Yes, I read somewhere that the new Supra was slated to start at around $30,000. I would be careful with that one. They may be trading on the name with not much substance. Sort of sell you a Celica and call it a Supra.

    I'm pretty sure thats about where the old NA Supra started. I don't think Toyota will let themselves get beaten by Nissan. Their 3.5L is a great engine, capable of almost as much power as the old Supra TT. If they bring the Turbos back, 400hp would be within easy reach.
  • brightness04brightness04 Posts: 3,151
    International companies hire local engineers for all sorts of reasons . . . most important of which usually are:

    (1) lower cost (it often takes a huge pay raise to get people leave home and ship themselves overseas)
    (2) in better touch with local taste.
    (3) political acceptance

    GM and BMW hire a lot of engineers in places like Brazil, China and South Africa. It would be a stretch of imagination to argue that such hirings are proof that "in terms of automotive engineering" the Americans and Germans "are still not up to Brazilian, Chinese or South African standards."
  • brightness04brightness04 Posts: 3,151
    While every car company would like to project itself as some sort of enterprise run by engineers . . . in reality engineers are not the most important in running a successful car company nowadays . . . just look at Nissan before the Ghosn era. It was indeed a company run by the engineers . . . into the ground.

    BMW's success if first and foremost the result of very astute marketting over the past three decades. So has Toyota been. Both had been very focused companies until the most recent years. Both are experts at building brand identity. The real danger for both is becoming somewhat of a miniturized (or not so miniturized) GM of yore . . . trying to be good at everything and becoming expert at nothing.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    THe CEO of BMW thinks otherwise. He fears losing his engineers to Lexus or Infiniti. Apparently he thinks his engineers are very talented and BMW cannot afford to lose them.

    I disagree with your opinion that engineers are like indistinguishable units of labor whose hiring is based mainly on cost, an awareness of local tastes and political considerations.

    Personally I think the CEO of BMW has every right to be scared from Toyota and should do his utmost to keep his engineers well compensated and motivated within BMW.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    BMW's success if first and foremost the result of very astute marketting over the past three decades. So has Toyota been.

    Very true!

    But Toyota and BMW are not only excellent companies because of their marketing?

    Toyota and BMW are superlative companies in very different ways. One is an amazing mass producer of high quality standardized cars and the other is an amazing producer of smaller volume premium cars.

    Is BMW and Toyota vulnerable? You bet they are.
    Are they doomed to end up like GM? Not neccessarily.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    The inevitable G35S vs. 335i test is going to be a very close race, probably decided by 1 or 2 points.

    I am not going to challenge you on this one since I myself did not test drive the new G35. And no 335i buyer is doomed to have idrive or AS. I chose to avoid those options.

    In USA the G35 is a bargain. In Canada the only manual tranny sport packaged G35 is sold as a coupe M6 for $50,600 CDN while a BMW 335i with a sport package is sold for 52,400 CDN $. I do not call that a bargain at all.

    So we will just have to wait for that inevitable test. Let's just say I am quite confident on which one will win.

    Only time will tell.
Sign In or Register to comment.