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Entry Level Luxury Performance Sedans

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Comments

  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 7,920
    edited August 26

    @flightnurse said: Not too sure why these cars have a Pandora app built into the radio, when you can stream it through bluetooth from your phone.

    It's two-fold. First, it's safer to navigate the Pandora app through the vehicle's infotainment center than it is to try and control it through your phone. Voice controls and steering wheel controls reduce the need to pick up the phone to use Pandora. Second, it's a marketing push. With Pandora in the infotainment system like Sirius/XM and terrestrial radio, you are more prone to use it which shows greater users/ratings and allowing them to sell higher priced advertising.

    I have Pandora on my phone and never use it in the car. It's too much of a pain to use the phone while driving a stick shift in the city.

  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,096
    edited August 26

    Most of the technologies that surprise and sometimes shock me for coming to the party so late are very inexpensive (and have been for some time).

    I can actually understand why ABS took a long time to "trickle" down. But, according to so many "experts" the single most valuable technology to come along is/was the electronic stability program (ESP) -- or just stability control. Once ABS is in place (my first car with it was built in 1986) adding ESP is relatively inexpensive. Yet it took perhaps 15 years to get it into "mainstream" cars even though it had been proven to be a life saver and a money saver since it was almost magical in its ability to help a driver avoid an unwanted crash (as if there are "wanted" crashes, eh?).

    Same with the backup camera -- cheap to implement and very valuable.

    Wait a minute, now I remember my dealer telling me that ESP was a $550 option for a couple of years on Audi products and that sunroofs were $1,250 (and not actually used that much), but that people would almost always opt for the sunroof they'd use twice a year and omit the ESP charge proclaiming "It's just an electronic nanny, I don't need it."

    In short, @m6user and @flightnurse: Point taken!

    ?'s

    Has Congress finally passed the "mandatory" back-up camera bill they've been promising?

    Oh, btw, I do see an abundance of folks driving cars (that I know have bluetooth) with phones pressed against their heads, all while driving one-handed or with their heads cocked to keep the phone from falling. Why wouldn't you use bluetooth if you had it?

    Inquiring, confused minds want to know.

  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 7,920

    @markcincinnati said:

    Has Congress finally passed the "mandatory" back-up camera bill they've been promising?

    Yes. The requirement was supposed to be implemented by 2011. But the DOT filed for extensions - presumably on the behest of industry. Now all vehicles under 10,000 lbs. built after May 1, 2018 must be equipped with a back up camera.

  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,096

    @robr2 said: Now all vehicles under 10,000 lbs. built after May 1, 2018 must be equipped with a back up camera.

    2018?! what a joke!

  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,366
    edited August 26

    @markcincinnati said:

    Mark...there was some auto company (probably more than one) who probably protested, stating how difficult and costly a back up camera would be to integrate into all of them, rendering their models uncompetitive price wise. Or, that their so called research stated the public didn't want back up cameras.

    So, NATSB probably said...OK, we'll give you 4 years.

    Sounds familiar....we heard that about airbags a couple of decades ago, too.

  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,294

    It's quite clear that Mark's business fortunes are looking up.

    It's a good thing -- things got quite quiet for a number of years around here.

  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,096
    edited August 26

    Biz (software sales and services) has, in 2014, improved greatly. But it's still not back to the good old days, and you cdnpinhead?

    The light at the end of the tunnel now appears NOT to be an on-coming train!

    Woo Woo.

    Back to cars!

    Adding a backup camera would cost something, sure, I get THAT -- but the cost would be passed on to the consumer and probably with at least a penny profit.

    I know it may sound like blasphemy, but I'm really curious about the new 2015 Genesis 4-door sedan. Priced here in the ELLPS pack, certainly doing a great cover as an ELLPS (wishing they were, I assume, an LPS, which won't be too much of a stretch over the next few years, I'd imagine).

    If I thought I could count on any of y'all to start mass quantities of test-drives, I'd pass on doing that, at this time.

    My wife and I must be outliers -- test driving is a serious hobby for us; and it is free, and about every 36 months we drop about $100K or more on a couple of new cars, and the dealer group we use to take our test drive adventures knows it, so there's always a willingness to let us go out and explore.

    Seems like a decent number of folks here probably do the same thing in terms of being in the market -- but y'all (and I grant I could be wrong) don't seem to be taking out the latest and greatest to see what's what.

    Think of it this way -- a new restaurant comes to town; I'm assuming most (51%) folks here eat out -- A LOT -- well you probably give the new eatery a go. The characteristics of the ELLPS and LPS "buyers" is (I've assumed with the data points y'all share here) would seem to indicate you're -- most of you anyway -- auto mavens (experts or connoisseurs). You like to "dine" (drive) the new restaurant (auto). True dat?

    I also assume y'all subscribe to at least two of the "big" car magazines and devour them both in print and on-line.

    Well the challenge I'll throw out -- and there is no prize for winning -- is to get into the new cars and drive them, then sign on here and tell us a story, whet our appetites for all things automotive (or at least ELLPS and/or near-LPS). Make the others here -- force or compel the rest of us -- HAVE to take out the car you drove to experience it for yourselves.

    Even if it's not an Audi.

    B)

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 15,094

    Navi is just not a big deal to me. I so rarely use it that my garmin is more than enough. Plus my wife can program while we are moving!

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (mine)

  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,096

    This is a big tent, we do have room for Neo-Luddites -- and smart alecs (like me).

    I must have something wrong with me -- for I use my nav system every day, every single day. I leave for work in the AM and I punch up my nav system, set the scale to 4 miles, which is enough to capture two Interstate highways that I may have to travel.

    Wait 5 seconds.

    The screen paints a series of red, yellow or green outlines along either the north/south or east/west route that I must travel to get from sub-urban Cincinnati to the CBD (where I need to be). If I see too much red painted on the Interstates (275 or 71), I know things are gonna be s=l=o=w so I take a secondary road route -- and I often try multiple routes and ask the navi lady to help me.

    I also ask the system to give me an approximate arrival time.

    Hell, I play with all this stuff and wish there was more tech to assist me in my journey.

    To each his / her own -- but the thing is, increasingly, the buyers of ELLPS's and LPS's take for granted that their vehicles will come with nav and a lot of other driver aids.

    I was in a meeting in Lexington KY (80 miles south of Cincinnati) the other day -- we were discussing an upcoming meeting and the client made the assumption that I would just input the address into the car's nav system (he knew not anything about my car), so he didn't give me directions, he just gave me the street and number of the destination to plug into my nav.

    A Garmin certainly works fine, folks often say they are superior to the factory systems (other than not being integrated with the rest of the car's "avionics".) It is just a preference (of mine) to have everything built in.

    Hence my frequent close: Drive it like YOU live. I submit, however, that all of this tech will soon, soon, soon be standard and that there will be a bunch of new tech none of us have even imagined, yet.

    Besides, I wouldn't pull over and ask for directions or attempt to use a map, if threatened with pain and death.

    ;)

  • justg0justg0 Posts: 70

    I use Navi too - but not the factory installed as they get outdated and are not as good as Google Maps. Google Maps on my Android device automatically picks the best route for me out of the possible 3 options I have to work based on the traffic conditions. And it keeps recomputing in realtime as I am driving. It tells me if alternate routes will be X minutes faster or slower. Maps are always up-to-date. It has information of road closures, accidents, everything I need.

    And since it is on my phone or my computer (same Google maps), I can lookup the route beforehand to plan ahead and I see the same route in my car.

    With Ok Google Now, I rarely need to type in the address or destination. The voice recognition is pretty good and I can lookup and navigate to addresses and destinations.

    The phone connects via Bluetooth so all the voice turn-by-turn directions are played via the car speaker system. If I have music playing (again via bluetooth audio), it will pause the music to speak out the directions.

    And all of this is Free.

    I don't think I can every go back to factory installed navi.

  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 2,149

    I tried using the maps on my iPhone but couldn't figure out how to use it. Call me Luddite.

    2014 Cadillac ATS4 2.0T, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,294
    edited August 27

    @markcincinnati said: Biz (software sales and services) has, in 2014, improved greatly. But it's still not back to the good old days, and you cdnpinhead?

    Kind of you to ask.

    I am at the other end of the entrepreneur scale from you. In a previous life I was self-employed (owner-operator driving a KW), but for the 30+ years since I've been working for "the man" in the form of an international conglomerate. I balance my 401K once or twice a year and my finances look pretty good, compared to the high-flyers over the years.

    I enjoy driving more than I do cars (in the art form, keep them polished but never dirve them sense), and my work allows me to do so, at their expense.

    I could have retired three years ago and continued to draw as much money as I do now, but I've chosen to continue to work. This puts more into the 401(K), as opposed to taking it out, and keeps me entertained. There's nothing quite like working in an environment in which I could quit at any time, and the supervision knows it.

  • flightnurseflightnurse 35K feetPosts: 1,653

    @justg0 said: I use Navi too - but not the factory installed as they get outdated and are not as good as Google Maps. Google Maps on my Android device automatically picks the best route for me out of the possible 3 options I have to work based on the traffic conditions.

    Now I'm not too sure how Audi or MB does it, but BMW uses Google Maps. In Google Maps on-line you can save the route you choose and have it sent to your BMW (car has to have Navi and BMW assist), it's a pretty slick system they have, you can set it up to go from Point A to B to C to D if you like. The dealer has shown Rick this since it will help him with clients showing multi houses.

  • sweendogysweendogy Left lanePosts: 1,179
    Nav discussion - interesting - I have had nav on both the g and now the audi- the g's touch screen and interface better - audi crisper (it's 7 yrs newer, dah!) and has the google integration - BUT I still use my phone more then factory- to all I recomend an app called WaZe. They were recently bought by google (a yr ago)- it uses real time driver info from users and the reporting is via users. Gives info on traffic, weather, potholes and best of all Cop locations. It reroutes on the fly- like if there is an accident 2 exits away it will tell me to get off and take service streets - wicked smart. As I sit here there are 7500 users near by with 2300 reports this am, and 50 million worldwide users according to forbes.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,691
    edited August 27

    @cdnpinhead said: I could have retired three years ago and continued to draw as much money as I do now, but I've chosen to continue to work. This puts more into the 401(K), as opposed to taking it out, and keeps me entertained. There's nothing quite like working in an environment in which I could quit at any time, and the supervision knows it.

    I have 8 days left- spread out over the next 4 months and then I can consider myself fully retired. Like you, I will probably pick up a part-time job, if only to allow me to pour more money into my HPDE fund. Every year I get 10 or more invitations to instruct at tracks all over the southeast and the only things that keep me from accepting most of them is time-which will no longer be an issue-and money(for brakes, tires, motels, etc.).

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,366

    Mark....I think we all are in the same boat. We like cars so much, we'll test drive them....well, just because. Plus, I'm lucky enough to be on enough car lists that the manufacturers seem to be sending me $25-$50-$100 gift cards just to stop in their dealerships. I oblige them.

    The inherent risk (and the dealers who know me, know this) is that I fall in love with something. Before you know it, out comes the check book. So, I try to temper what I drive, and when. If property taxes are due, that's a good time to test drive. I'm less likely to pull out the checkbook (which would be severely depleted at that time.

    I did look at the new '15 C300 at my nearby Benz dealer. My sister bought a car there ('14 C350). Nice interior. Dealer wanted to go for a spin. I said "no". Pretty inside. But, $50K? For a relatively mundane 4 cyl with middling power? Can't see it, at least not on my watch.

    RB....do you go to Mid-Ohio much?

  • justg0justg0 Posts: 70

    @flightnurse said: In Google Maps on-line you can save the route you choose and have it sent to your BMW (car has to have Navi and BMW assist), it's a pretty slick system they have, you can set it up to go from Point A to B to C to D if you like

    Yeah, I had that in my previous BMW and used that quite a bit. Even though its Google Maps, doesn't look like they get updated automatically like they do on the phone. Still Send to Car option is convenient.

    This time I want without a navi and am glad I did. Now I like it so much that when I drive my Acura with built in navi, I still use the navi on my phone.

    @sweendogy said: Nav discussion - interesting - I have had nav on both the g and now the audi- the g's touch screen and interface better - audi crisper (it's 7 yrs newer, dah!) and has the google integration - BUT I still use my phone more then factory- to all I recomend an app called WaZe.

    I will have to give WaZe a try. Looks like Google is incorporating their technology in Google Maps as I have found it's route and traffic info to be quite accurate, even for smaller streets.

  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 7,920
    edited August 27

    Mass DOT has implemented a system similar to Waze on major highways. Starting in 2012, the state set up Bluetooth readers and message boards. It's called Go Time. They anonymously read Bluetooth devices in your car and measure when you get to other readers to estimate how much time it is between set points. That information is sent to the message boards and to an app called RTTM.

    And it does all that without any interaction from the user or Waze's silly icons.

    One can use the message boards to plan your drive or check the RTTM app on your phone. I'd like to see something like this expanded to nav systems.

  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,691

    @graphicguy said: RB....do you go to Mid-Ohio much?

    Only twice, but It's one of the tracks I get invited to. My next stop is the new track at the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green KY.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • sweendogysweendogy Left lanePosts: 1,179
    @‌robr2

    Like everything in mass this will be slow - as this is a 2012 announcement, and they have not marketed an app or website. tsure they have signs everywhere and they do have real time traffic to certain exits on highways but this does not help in planning a trip. So it's great when you are already sitting in traffic and it tells you it's 30 mins to go another 10 miles, :(

    WaZe uses users speed and not just interactions - but the interactions are what make it better- "Police Ahead" helps and will never be integrated with MassDot
  • dash5dash5 Posts: 418

    @justg0 said: I use Navi too - but not the factory installed as they get outdated and are not as good as Google Maps. Google Maps on my Android device automatically picks the best route for me out of the possible 3 options I have to work based on the traffic conditions. And it keeps recomputing in realtime as I am driving. It tells me if alternate routes will be X minutes faster or slower. Maps are always up-to-date. It has information of road closures, accidents, everything I need.

    And since it is on my phone or my computer (same Google maps), I can lookup the route beforehand to plan ahead and I see the same route in my car.

    With Ok Google Now, I rarely need to type in the address or destination. The voice recognition is pretty good and I can lookup and navigate to addresses and destinations.

    The phone connects via Bluetooth so all the voice turn-by-turn directions are played via the car speaker system. If I have music playing (again via bluetooth audio), it will pause the music to speak out the directions.

    And all of this is Free.

    I don't think I can every go back to factory installed navi.

    I do the same. Google maps and OK Google ... It's great and I'm not going back. Same with a back up camera by the way. It's a must for me now.

    I just wish they would let bluetooth stream the map/route to the cars screen so I wouldn't have the need for that suction cup thing on my dash to hold my phone.

  • justg0justg0 Posts: 70

    @dash5 said: I just wish they would let bluetooth stream the map/route to the cars screen so I wouldn't have the need for that suction cup thing on my dash to hold my phone.

    Yeah, that would be cool. I have heard rumors that Apple has been working on tighter integration with phone in the car. Hopefully we see that happen sooner than later...

  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,366

    Here's the latest on Apple's "CarPlay" (Siri integration).

    http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/A/apple-carplay.html

    Still trying to figure out how this will work.

    Via Bluetooth, I can already use my iPhone's phone functions. I can also get the spoken Buetooth directions through the TL's sound system via maps. I can ask Siri questions and get answers via Siri connected to bluetooth. So, if they're planning even more integration (say, just having a screen where an iPhone displays it's maps and bluetooth where the directions can be heard), I'm thinking onboard Nav systems may be a thing of the past.

  • justg0justg0 Posts: 70

    Take a look here: https://www.apple.com/ios/carplay/

    You can see that the touchscreen in car shows the phone icons. And the screen in the car also display the Apple Maps & turn-by-turn directions.

    Looks like it is up to car manufacturers to integrate car play in the car. For 2014 the list includes Ferrari, Honda, Hundai, MB and Volvo. Others are listed in future.

  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,096
    edited August 27

    I think virtually the entire in-car "avionics" or "carvionics" should be able to be updated by BlueTooth streaming from (why not) a smart phone. New features and functions could be loaded into the dash's brain just like an app can be downloaded into your smartphone.

    Certain things, I'm sure, would require hardware upgrades, but heck, make everything a module (as if it isn't already in a lot of cases) that could be plucked out like a radio head unit and replaced with new technology. And, why not make things at least one, if not more generations backwardly compatible (with some loss of functionality).

    Right now I want to update (replace actually) that piece of crap Audi Connect "hardware" that apparently, forces me to have but ONE choice, other than to go without -- T-Mobile. I go less than 5 miles and the connection drops to 2G, which totally kills Google Maps and the eye in the sky-view on the screen. Even 3G isn't all that great.

    Yet, right there, on the showroom floor is an A3 with 4G LTE -- which is pretty much like being there (and the carrier is AT&T which works about 98% of the time compared with T-Mobile's 70% of the time.) There must be a "module" under the dash that is nothing more than a "smart phone" without the phone case.

    Or, why not allow the "phone" to be "unlocked" and allow, via software, me to use another, more reliable carrier.

    Heck, for all I know T-Mobile is great (just not in Ohio), elsewhere.

    Update-able tech, that's what's next -- or at least it should be. Of course, I think EVERYTHING should be standard on the car as it comes from the factory. Then, if you want the option, you pay for it -- you don't get rid of the car. This could even be done for many engine performance enhancements -- base cars comes with 200HP and 200 ft/lbs of torque. Pay the man (the dealer) to turn on the next level up the performance ladder and the engine now cranks out 250HP and 275 ft/lbs., etc etc.

    I'm not suggesting a basic BMW 3-series come to market equipped with a software hobbled M3 powerplant -- awaiting someone to pay for the upgrade to have the secret code entered. More like what IBM does with some of their hardware that can be upgraded for the end of month processing -- for a fee and then returned to normal for the routine daily processing of data.

  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,688

    Our Epic ELLPC Road Trip

    My wife and I recently completed an extensive motor tour of the Intermountain West in our 2001 BMW 330 Ci Cabriolet. Sometimes in this topic we lose sight of the fact that these cars aren't just about high tech features and luxury appointments, they're about enjoying driving . I thought I'd give you some impressions about what it's like to take one of these ELLP cars on an extensive road trip.

    I'm not going to give you a travelogue of what we saw and did but talk about the journey, which, if you love to drive, is as important as the destinations. I'm well aware that the convertible version of the Three Series isn't the sort of vehicle most would choose for such a trip, in fact the default choice for such long-distance touring is a motor home/RV or Fifth-wheel trailer. I understand the appeal of such vehicles but pros get paid good money for driving large heavy vehicles because driving them is a chore, at least IMO.

    If you love driving and haven't driven in the Far West you should put it on your bucket list. You can really drive out there, speed limits are high and traffic enforcement is light. The roads (with some notable exceptions*) are in beautiful shape and even the Interstates have dramatic curves, steep grades (up to 7%!) and the most spectacular scenery you'll see anywhere.
    Our 14 year old Bimmer performed beautifully without any problems other than a healthy appetite for 91 Octane (we averaged 28 MPG) and took to the highway as an autobahn-bred car should. We always had more than enough power and brakes to handle anything and the sublime steering made every mile a pleasure.

    The major drawback of course was the small size, it wouldn't be suitable for more than two on such a long trip. We took advantage of the feature that allows one to flip away the recess where the top goes when it's down which greatly increased luggage space but robbed us of the ability to cruise topless until had we offloaded the bags. I've been a convertible guy for a long time but I wouldn't care to go more than two or three hours w the top lowered anyway. Thanks to the well-designed top, the Three-er Cabrio makes a very nice Grand Touring coupe w the top in place . After 20 days, 4500 miles and 8 states (AZ/UT/ID/OR/MT/WY/NV) we arrived home tired but satisfied after a great drive in a wonderful car.

    *Western roads are generally in fine shape with a couple of notable exceptions (mostly in Montana and I-40 in Western AZ is surprisingly bad give the state's rep for good roads) but they are littered with "Road Alligators", shreds of truck tires, one of which tore up the lower front grille and left side fog light. This is surprising in light of the proliferation of truck inspection stations. Don't they ever notice that the tires on these big rigs are crap?

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,691

    Nice write up Andy; it's good to remember it's about driving- not leather upholstered electronic gadget dens...

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • andres3andres3 CAPosts: 5,343

    I think the back up camera and the Navigation are tied together with the Audi S4, so it's like $3K to get the two features. NO thank you. I know a guy with a 2011 S4 and he was using his back up camera while backing up and it caused him to wreck his side mirror housing on the right side. The problem is the screen doesn't show your sides, only the rear.

    I forced my insurance to replace the aluminum side mirror housing due to a chip from my accident in March. I now know why they ignored the small chip originally, as the part is $500 and nearly $600 installed.

    My money was better spent getting the 3.0T, the S-Tronic DSG, the Sport Diff, and the Nappa Leather than on Navigation or backup cameras.

    Some people don't want to spend $50K, let alone MORE THAN $50K to get a great vehicle.

    P.S. You have to turn off the ESC to use launch control.

  • sweendogysweendogy Left lanePosts: 1,179
    @andres3‌ - I think the back up camera plus beeping things are a great help in my s4 - but the camera and the beeps are just an aid in backing up. Sorry to hear about the friends situation but hard to blame a camera for user error. To each is own on optioning a car but cameras should and will be standard on all cars- fact is they help and the govt has taken notice and I'm sure insurance companies are going to be happier too.
  • flightnurseflightnurse 35K feetPosts: 1,653

    @andres3 said:

    I forced my insurance to replace the aluminum side mirror housing due to a chip from my accident in March. I now know why they ignored the small chip originally, as the part is $500 and nearly $600 installed.

    What been the outcome in getting the insurance company to give you diminished value on your car?

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