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Entry Level Luxury Performance Sedans



  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    That was my point about the defining first post being five years old. I agree with you and I believe at this point going beyond $40k to some degree is warranted.

    In any case, those vehicles are definitely staples of this discussion.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    The optimal price-point for an *entry-level* car like this should be exactly the average selling price, or $30K.

    - The IS 350? No stickshift. Gone. If Lexus added manual back for 2008, which given the upcoming CTS, they might, I'd gladly welcome it back. There's ZERO point in having 300HP in a smaller car like this and castrating it with a less than great automatic.

    - The G35 sport has manual and is right at $33K or so. It fits this discussion. It's also nicely equipped as is - you don't need $6K in options to make it a nice car.
    Cars Direct Target Price: $32,950

    - The 335i isn't BMWs entry-level offering in this category, so it fails based upon that criteria.
    CarsDirect Price: $38,560 - this is for one with vinyl seats and not even the upgraded suspension that you'd want - no - NEED to make it stand out from the competition.

    The focus needs to be on "least expensive luxury performance sedans" - and 40K+ isn't being frugal - or sometihng that an average first-time buyer in this segment really wants to pay.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Plekto, those cars are part of this discussion and that is not going to change. If you don't want to talk about them, that's fine, just ignore them.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    easily top out over $40 without trying. Until recently the bottom of the line Infiniti had cloth. The Germans allow you to option out the vehicle as you want. The 3 series is the bottom of the line of BMWs lineup. Add one option to the Lexus and the price jumps by $7K. This forum is not the frugal shopping section of Edmunds.

    A first time buyer who wants a more sporty 2007 vehicle than a family sedan but doesn't want to pay over $30K out the door is out of luck in this segment.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    The original post itself stipulated that a manual transmission as non-negotiable and it still is. Lexus needs to bring a manual option back, because to people who dominate this segment, it's not even close to the real thing without it.

    As for the 335i, the 330 is BMW's entry-level option according to them. If you start letting in upper-level offerings of simmilar cars, well, then we might as well put the CTS-V or the S60R in as well...

    P.S. while $30K may be hard to do, 30K or so for a base price before options is very much the goal of many buyers. ie - they'll squeeze up to 35K or so, but take the 335i - you can easily bloat it up to 45K or more, which is just not in the same price-range.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    The topic has been well-defined for quite some time. I guess there was a point where posters lost sight of the stick being a requirement. While I personally prefer a stick as do many here, there is some logic in letting it go as an absolute requirement as manual trannies become harder to find and as fewer and fewer folks (unfortunately) demand it.

    The CTS-V and S60R are clearly overkill for this particular conversation.

    I think it would be a good thing if we talked about the cars listed at the top of this page and stop worrying about what should or should not be included in this discussion that has done just fine for a very long time within its defined, yet reasonably elastic given what has changed over time, parameters.

    It would be great if anyone who wants to change the topic goes ahead and fires up another. We can never have too many places to debate these vehicles, eh? :)

    Edit (in response to your edit): As I've said, a five year old post defining the pricepoint needs to be taken with several inflated grains of salt. There is no reason to hold on to a five year old $40k ceiling.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    all of the cars only the A4 might allow you get out the door for $30K. Face it, this is a speciality segment, prices are not like the midsize family sedan segment.

    Why don't you start your own discussion with the makes, models and price of your choice? This way you can exclude the upper echelon of the bottom rung.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    I don't see why $40K isn't just as fair a ceiling as it used to be. It keeps you firmly in "entry-level" territory and is exactly one notch above the typical spongy boxes/rental fleet fodder.

    The G35 sedan, the CTS, the S60, and 330i, and a slew of others aren't even $35K, and are fine examples of this type of car. A couple of them, like the CTS, start at under $30K. 40K is still more than enough to buy a few options and get it out the door, IMO.

    Most people here want to raise that limit for one and only one reason, the 335i. But that's as unfair as the IS350 is, because the IS250 is clearly what Lexus is offering as their entry-level sports sedan.

    And the 330i isn't a half-bad car, either, make no mistake about it. It runs neck and neck with many of the others.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    With options almost every vehicle goes above $40K, so you are in favor of eliminating the vehicle if it can be optioned out over $40K? Or are you just trying to twist the argument a bit. The base price of every vehicle listed is below $40K and can be optioned to over $40K.

    Please stop talking about the 330 you cannot buy a 2007 330 sedan or coupe. The 335i leaves 'em in the dust.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,048
    I read the date on Post #1 when I copied the beginning criteria to the recent post and it didn't register about cost increase. I should have realized it has changed.

    I used an inflation calculator and the $30000 and $40000 went to $33333 and $45000 approx. That's about 2% per year.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    Yet its clear that cars get a bit less expensive every generation as well - at least in be entry-level of each segment. You can thank Hyundai and others for putting pressure on the older players.

    Afterall, the price increase on a base CTS isn't hardly a blip. The next one may be a little more money, but certainly not 3-4K more.

    I think part of it is that $40K+ still sticks in most buyers' minds as "wait a second... that's expensive!" - certainly to people lokoing for "entry-level" anything.
  • ggesqggesq Posts: 701
    Buying a 35k-45k ELLPS is not just about making the purchase. People have to factor in TCO. In reality, if folks are taking a second look at the "price" then they really shouldn't be looking in this segment.
  • dfc3dfc3 Posts: 87
    Whereas I agree that $40,000 shouldn't be a "cap" anymore... maybe something like $45,000 should. As a Mercedes-Benz C Class owner, the C350 (with options) can still be had for well under $45,000, but not under $40,000. I'd imagine the BMW 3 Series would fit the same bill for the best engine/package in the line.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    That's just plain silly.

    It says at the top of this page:
    Entry Level Luxury Performance Sedans
    So tell me why this shouldn't be included as well. It's brand new, and it's under $43K.(a 2007 is $48K, btw)

    I can hear it now. Everyone crying "foul!" while at the same time saying that the upper-end/more powerful versions of the Lexus, 3 series, or C-class somehow should be allowed. "But it's not entry-level".

    And neither are the high-performance versions of the 3, C, and IS, either. $40K is a good limit because it takes almost of these souped-up sedans out of the competition.
    (and technicaly, you can get a 338i for under $40K - so no whining - though it's clearly NOT BMW's entry-level offering, it does squeek under the line)
  • joe131joe131 Posts: 972
    and VW is not a luxury nameplate and Passat is not VW's entry level sedan either. Sorry. Don't mention it in here again.
    Passat fails to make the grade.
  • joe131joe131 Posts: 972
    yeah, these 3 are entry level sedans within their luxury nameplates' offerings. Well, the IS250 is, and the IS350 is pretty much just an optional engine in that entry car.
    Price does not determine whether its an ELLPS.
  • joe131joe131 Posts: 972
    The arguments keep re-surfacing. Hahaha.
    Host defines the breed, and has in the past.
    Have the rules changed host?
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    This discussion is about the cars listed at the top of the page. If anyone wants to change the cars being discussed, please start a new discussion. Thanks.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    this is precisely the reason.

    What is the MSRP on this car, $51K/$52K? Just because GM products have their value fall like rocks is no reason to include them in less expensive segments. With the 335 their MSRP is to expensive, but in the case of CTS-V their supposed retail is within the "range". I think not.

    Oh and by the way, have fun buying that car in New Hampshire.
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,354
    They probably will KILL the CTS anyway....then resurrect it...NO WAIT, Lets call it Eldorado!!!

    That is why the US auto industry really can't survive. No definitive direction. MKZ CTS...means nothing in terms of best of breed. Too GENERAL for me anymore.

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