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High End Luxury Cars

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  • Off topic but I disagree that the Ridgeline is for people that think big trucks are cool. Those people would by a traditional truck IMO. The Ridgeline is after a completely different market. People that think big trucks are cool buy the completely ridiculous Escalade and don't tow a darn thing, they want the bling. How many Ridgelines are in videos on MTV?
    Point being, not to many image conscience people buying Hondas IMO.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    should have put it up against the v-8 Cayenne

    The MDX uses a V6 so it seems fairer to compare it to a V6 rather than V8 Cayenne.
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    Tagman why are you singling out the 7 series as the car that will lose sales from the LS? Why not the S Class or the A8?

    Dewey - Singling out the 7-Series? Not at all! I think it's a no-brainer that the LS has targeted the S-Class for years and has had a large impact upon its sales. This is by no means the sudden end of that.

    It is, rather, an expansion or broadening of Lexus' sales ambitions. Lexus is addressing the years of criticisms that they were dull driving appliances with lackluster styling. Are you suggesting that you don't see the LS 460's improvement here?

    The question of the A8 is more sophisticated, IMO. I think the A8 buyer has honed in on certain features and dynamics that are best satisfied by the A8.

    Certainly the A8 along with the S-Class and the 7-Series all are impacted when it comes to Lexus' significant market share. The sales have to come from somewhere, and those are the other HELMS in the arena, so they are the ones that lose market share.

    TagMan
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    :shades:

    Funny, I don't have any interest in driving the new-and-improved ES.

    I would like to drive the LS, and it's "competition". The RX and it's "competition". And the Sc, to see if it's dynamics are as poor as Merc says they are.

    A lot of that rides on expectations. Considering the cars weight, run-flat tires, and plusher-than-Benz SL interior, I'm not expecting a go-cart.

    I know I'm gonna oversteer a couple of vehicles off-course. Gotta find their limits, ya no! ;)

    I'd figure you'd have to get a vehicle up to at least 40-50MPH to gauge it's true handling character when changing directions. Acceleration should be pretty easily guaged.

    For a driver like me, sitting in the HELMs will be nice, but I'm not expecting to fall in love with anything, even the mighty LS.

    LS engineers have stated that the 7-speed running in the S-Class is really a 6-speed spliced into an additional gear ration, not a true 7-speed, so they didn't think very highly of modeling their tranny after that.

    1-2 are super-low gears, and 8 is super-high, while the "sweet-spot" can be found in Gears 3-7.

    DrFill
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    I say: Keep with the moment of the XK(Ford willing), and this company should be on it's feet by decade's end. Wishful thinking tho....

    The wonderful new XK isn't going to be enough here, IMO. Add to that the possible sale of Jaguar itself, and the current XJ gas tank issue, which is not yet resolved, and the serious decisions that are ahead regarding the X-type and S.

    With regards to the potential sales of Jag, Lexusguy indicated that the only interested party so far is an investment group led by Jacques Nasser. Well, he is, of course the former CEO of Ford, and some of his leadership at Ford was questionable, IMO.

    Nasser got blindsided in some respects by the world scene, but he was a poor planner, IMO, who lacked solid vision for the future.

    Oh well, at least the buyer benefits from the buyer's market on a terrific XJ Vanden Plas (once they resolve the gas tank issue, of course!)

    TagMan
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    LS engineers have stated that the 7-speed running in the S-Class is really a 6-speed spliced into an additional gear ration, not a true 7-speed, so they didn't think very highly of modeling their tranny after that.

    Doc - Please post the link where those Lexus transmission gurus made that statement.

    Now don't take this wrong, but using that reasoning, it could be stated that the Lexus tranny is then only primarily a 5-speed (3-7) with 1&2 only used to get the car out of the gate, given its serious lack of low end torque, and with 8 only used to achieve an EPA highway rating.

    TagMan
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Tag, my best suggestion for Jag would be to revamp the S and X-Type's, and infuse some more appeal to the otherwise competent XJ.

    I don't think there is any way that the X-type can be saved. It needs a compact, RWD based front-mid engine architecture, and Ford doesn't have anything like that. Neither does Mazda or Volvo. There's nobody to pull it from. If given the new Duratec 35, it would have reasonably competitive power, but thats not enough.

    This car needs a new chassis that only is shared with PAG brands, in hopes of putting a premium on the car. But from what I hear, Ford is about to dilute the brand even worse by putting the S-Type on the global platform that the S80 currently enjoys.

    Where is this chassis supposed to come from? Jag can't afford to use the XJ platform, and Ford doesn't have anything else. I thought the plan after dropping the XJ platform was to essentially continue on an updated DEW98 platform, rather than switch to the MKS\S80 platform. Did that change? At least DEW98 is RWD.

    The technology is there. The AJ V-8s can be massaged to crank out 500hp NATURALLY, so why not use it.

    Its a question of what Jaguar can afford to do, and that isn't much. Making the Euro market 2.7L diesel killed the F-type. The AJ would significant reworking and a large displacement bump in order to get near that kind of power. I dont think Aston Martin was holding back when they were only able to get 380hp out of a 4.3L version of the AJ.
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    I would LOVE to hyperlink, but my computer has all the agility of an 8-track player, and the article is posted on a major automotive website, and is less than a week old. Weekly publication website. Look at it as a Treasure Hunt! ;)

    You can interpret the set-up how you wish. The LS engineers seem to use 1 and 2 for low-end torque, 8 for the highway, and the others as driving gears. As they tell it, there is enough difference in the gear ratios to be a true 8-speed.

    DrFill
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    The 8-speed tranny in the LS is much the same in that one used in the S-Class. The last two ratios are overdrive gears, meaning that they're there to conserve fuel. But the MB one ups the Lexus, it has the ability to drop 3 ratios instantly for for quick passing manuevers, hence the S-Classes 5.1 secs to 60 and a 30-50mph passing time of only 3.2 seconds. So much for the brilliant minds at Toyota in hopes of one upping MB.
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    As LG put it, it all comes down to what Jag is able to do and what Ford is allowing them to do.

    The company has way too many demerits that won't be fixed over time. Arguably the most honed nameplate behind Aston in PAG, it seems unfathomable that they'll desert as such, but they have.

    The S-Type is reported to switch to the S80/MKS platform for '08. Even with AWD, the little dynamics that are left in the car will for sure be erased with a nose-heavy FWD-biased platform. The only good thing to come from this would be that Jag would be able to fix the S-Type's very cramped interior.

    LG, you're right again. The X-Type can't be fixed. Yes they can put the corporate Duratec 35 in it to stay competive on the hp front, but the dynamics of the car won't change for sure.

    But there is one shining star: The XK. I saw the XKR in person in the City yesterday. The car is so stunning yet still Jag-stealth, and understandably so. The Taurus-esque grille is gone on this model, and Jag is getting serious with the performance of this car with next years 550hp+ XKR+R.

    The XJ: This car is one of those rides that lives a life of obscurity. Such a reliable package(according to many reports) and a much improved interior and exterior design, the car should've done for Jag what the LS does for Lexus. I personally like the car. The build quality is impecable, and the company has not wavered to far from the British charm of over 50 years.

    The car company is crippled but not dead. In fact, believe it or not, this company is in much better shape than Nissan was in the mid-to-late '90's and actually better than parent company Ford, who is currently losing $440k per day, massive even for Microsoft and Google.....
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    But the MB one ups the Lexus, it has the ability to drop 3 ratios instantly for for quick passing manuevers....So much for the brilliant minds at Toyota in hopes of one upping MB.

    I believe that the LS460 can downshift at least 3 gears instantly, if not 4....can't remember which review that was in.

    hence the S-Classes 5.1 secs to 60 and a 30-50mph passing time of only 3.2 seconds

    You conveniently forgot to mention that that is with an engine that displaces about 20% more than in the LS. Let's wait until MB introduces an S450 (if they have the courage) for a more fair comparison. I predict the LS460 will beat the S450 in 0-60 and passing times, as well as in mpg.
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    The XJ: This car is one of those rides that lives a life of obscurity. Such a reliable package(according to many reports) and a much improved interior and exterior design, the car should've done for Jag what the LS does for Lexus. I personally like the car. The build quality is impecable, and the company has not wavered to far from the British charm of over 50 years.

    It's actually quite a car that many folks so easily fall in love with, but for a variety of reasons many less will part with their green to actually own one. There are simply more mainstream choices out there.

    TagMan
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    A lot of that rides on expectations. Considering the cars weight, run-flat tires, and plusher-than-Benz SL interior, I'm not expecting a go-cart

    What exactly makes the SC's interior "plusher" than the SL's? The SC interior is plush for sure, but it is an example of a company trying to reach to far to be something it isn't, elegant. All those different materials and colors jocking for attention make it a tacky mess in some colors, IMO. It looks custom made for the pinky ring set. BTW, it wasn't just me that said the SC430 handles like a boat, it has been any and every magazine and some Lexus owners right here that have also said the same thing, so it was hardly just me.

    LS engineers have stated that the 7-speed running in the S-Class is really a 6-speed spliced into an additional gear ration, not a true 7-speed, so they didn't think very highly of modeling their tranny after that.

    What nonsense. If that is the case then their 8-speed is nothing more than a 7-speed spliced into an additional gear "ratio" too. Anything to say that the competition didn't advance the transmission game and that they did is what that statement is saying, what a load.

    M
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    If I'm not mistaken, wasn't it team Lexus that was boasting about the LS displacing only 4.6L but churning out the same amount of power as a 5.5L Benz? My how times have changed so quickly. It doesn't matter about the displacement of either car. The Benz is heavier than the LS and one cog short of it's tranny, yet it rips to 60 in 1 second faster than the LS? It's not power, it's gearing. With 380hp on tap, 6.0 secs to 60 mph is just pathetic. Is it really 380? The Toyota Avalon Touring is just 400lbs lighter but also packing a much less powerful 3.5L 268hp V6(almost 120hp less) does the same thing for $30k cheaper, and is more fun to drive and is a better buy without all of the LS' frivilous features.

    The 8 speed transmissions that are installed in the LS have received less than stellar reviews, particularly the review that Car and Driver gave it when it said the gearing was too tall on 1st 3rd and OD, and the transmission was lazy to react to the gas pedal, and forget about the manual mode. Then they go on to say that the Benz 7-G remains "top dog" in this class.
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    I would LOVE to hyperlink, but my computer has all the agility of an 8-track player, and the article is posted on a major automotive website, and is less than a week old. Weekly publication website. Look at it as a Treasure Hunt!

    Doc, when you have the web page on your screen, simply highlight the web address of the page you are viewing, and then "copy" the address. Then simply "paste " that address in your post. That way, we can all see the web address. Linking it is optional, but also easy, and would further require you to highlight the address after you paste it in your post and select the "url" button just below where you enter your post.

    But if it is simple enough, just copy and paste the web page's address in the future.

    BTW, it is a distinct pleasure to see you posting on the HELM forum, my friend, and I truly appreciate your input. Whether we agree or disagree is secondary.

    :D

    TagMan
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Here is the article on that transmission comment:

    http://www.autoweek.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060905/FREE/60905003/1024/L- - ATESTNEWS

    We decided right from the start. When we launched the LS430, BMW already had a six-speed, which beat us in the “world first” category. At that time we started studying eight speeds. We met with Aisin at a World Cup game (in Japan) about four years ago about the transmission’s development. The Mercedes S class has seven speeds, but sixth and seventh are so close that we think it’s just a six-speed.

    Now because their first and second gears are so short does that make it just a 7-Speed is the question these engineers should be asked.

    "We think it's just a 6-Speed".

    Yeah sure.

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Clearly Lexus went after the S550 in terms of power so that is the car it should be compared with, not the imaginary S450. One minute the LS460 is the equal of the S550 and the next it isn't fair to compare it to the S550. Lexus clearly tried to match the S550's 5.5L V8 with a 4.6L V8, but just like I stated many months ago the engine in the LS needs to rev to get it's power Lexus knows this hence an 8-speed automatic.

    That age old rule about their being no replacement for displacement seems to be in play here.

    M
  • houdini1houdini1 Kansas City areaPosts: 5,860
    Here are some of my favorite comments from some 2006 S class LS comparisons:

    "Compared to the LS, the S class interior looks like a farm tractor. People who buy this car deserve better".

    "The S class uses more gas than most SUVs".

    "The S class is no match for the LS in terms of noise, vibration, and harshness".

    "I won't even get into all the electronic glitches in the S and the crappy after sale service".

    Well, I guess that about sums it up.

    2013 LX 570 2010 LS 460 2002 Tacoma 4x4

  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    As we all know, the Pursuit of Perfection continues.

    The drivetrain should be extremely powerful, yet smooth as silk.

    Hauntingly fast, yet technically efficient.

    Eerily quiet, yet has a lion's growl when pushed.

    The 750i has a pretty sweet engine too. :blush:

    I think you'll be splitting hairs when comparing any one of the World's best engines.

    But at 4.6 liters, the Lexus deserves special praise for standing up to engines much larger and coming to the show with a wink in it's eye. ;)

    DrFill
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    Here are some of my favorite comments from some 2006 S class LS comparisons:

    ALL your favorite comps trash the S-Class? Well that sums up your point-of-view pretty well, doesn't it?

    I'll bet you must think no one could do the same in reverse . . . but what would be the point really.

    TagMan
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