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Entry Level Luxury Performance Sedans

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  • "As Mark says, as good as the TL SH AWD is, she wasn't the marrying type."

    Hey watch what you are saying about my wife- been married 3 years now without any pre-nups.
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 2,487
    '09 Jaguar XK Coupe. Beautiful, great ride/handling balance, powerful, relatively economical and seats 4! Ahem... :blush:

    Approaching 32k miles, three warranty issues (anything electrical related expected, no surprise. The Prince of Darkness followed Jag to Ford):

    Replaced Audio Control Module to fix disappearing AM radio (at the time, needed AM to listen to the Sox games. Hindsight, shoulda just left it offline.)
    Replaced Nav System. Almost everytime I entered an address, the system would reboot. Other than that, worked fine. ;)
    Replace/repair the AC outflow tube. Too close to the exhaust, melted shut. Passenger footwell filled with condensation on a road trip. Good one, Jaguar!

    The two electrical fixes were plug and play module replacements, no biggie. The AC fix, I saw the Jag in the shop, not a pretty site. But, I found out later, there was a TSB, all is well now. Loaner car was Land Rover LR2, which was good to experience. Now I know I will never buy a LR2. I had hoped for an XF or XJ, but alas, no. (When my TL was in for service, I always asked for the loaner NSX. But, wouldn't you know, every time they had just loaned it out before I got there!)

    No issues since. I'm a sucker for leather and wood and I'm surrounded by it. Bowers and Wilkins audio, just lovely. And, the exhaust note: :D . The touch screen? Slow, clunky, gen 1.0. Luckily some redundant controls on the center stack and (heated, new favorite option) steering wheel. You get used to it.

    As I consider myself more of a GT guy than a true sports car guy (as of this writing), this car is near perfect for me. Except for the pesky don't go in snow thing...

    Went to the Jag Drive Alive experience, what a good time! Open to all, free. Nothing but R models of the XF, XJ and actually XKR-S in all it's 550hp glory. You get to drive each and every one, the XKR-S on a drag strip. Oh, my goodness. Swag, food, a bunch of professional drivers riding shotgun and followed up a few weeks later with a coupon good for up to $5k off a Jag. Holding out for an F-Type coupe.

    Love the car, father's friend had a red E-type convertible back in the late '60s, never forgot it. Of course, my kids don't like the XK, because, well, I spent their tuiton money on it. :shades: Kidding of course. Emptied my 401k!

    BTW, traded an '05 Acura TL for the Jag. Loved the TL, 6.5 years, 85k miles not an issue to report. Like the Jag, handsome, nicely appointed, great ride/handling balance, really seats 4 or more! And, not fabulous in the snow. I chose the TL over the Infiniti G back in '05 as the TL was just more refined, more GT to me. Too each, you can argue all you want about which car is better/better built/more reliable/fun etc. But until you put your $ down, it's all talk. Fun, interesting talk (when friendly).

    I've owned Japanese, European and even a domestic (Chrylser! 300M. Enjoyed it). Japanese easily most set it and forget it. But, the Saab, BMW and Jag ain't been too bad. Although the Bimmer is only a year old... Even the 300M had no out of warranty issues. But, at 67k miles, I wasn't taking chances and traded it for the TL.

    The Jag? Just a special piece of aluminum, wood and leather. Well done. But, where do I go from here?

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

  • flightnurseflightnurse at 35K feetPosts: 1,524
    Thanks for the write up dada... I have always like Jag's like you the E type, but mine was with the V12... Here in PHX, we have one Jag dealer, and it belongs to the Penske Autogroup, they have a concierge service, when you walk in (not too if other Jag dealers have it. But on a flight last week, my seatmate was in Charge of concierge service at all of the Penske dealerships in PHX, we talked. She been employed with them now 12 years, she tells me that the complaints have gone down with the newer generation of Jag's, which is a good thing. Who knows, in 10 years I might want one..
  • flightnurseflightnurse at 35K feetPosts: 1,524
    Guess what, I don't think Infiniti is trying to clone a BMW 3

    I'll have to disagree with you on this. Here is what Road and Track wrote in the first paragraph of their article/comparison of the ATS and 3 series.

    The BMW 3 Series isn't just a car. As my cohort Jonny Lieberman likes to say, the 3 Series is a segment. Now, this isn't an attempt to stoke BMW's ego, or, as many of our readers would assume, bias towards the Bavarian brand. It's just the simple truth: When an automaker chooses to compete in the luxury sports sedan segment, it's benchmarking the 3 Series. No BMW has consistently won Motor Trend comparison tests like the 3 Series has, and for good reason. The 3 Series has come to define BMW's Ultimate Driving Machine mantra and embodies the purest qualities BMW stands for as a brand.

    R&T said it best, if you are going to build a sport sedan, than you are going to be compared to a 3 series. I do not remember reading that Infiniti was not trying to build their version of a 3 series.

    We all know that over the years, the 3 series hasn't lived up to its reputation, however, it continues to be picked over the others., first C&D and now R&T have picked the 3 series as a winner, as I stated before, if GM can fix the short comings of the ATS, they have the best shot of taking the win from BMW.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,897
    edited October 2012
    Can't say that I am shocked by the disagreement. You just don't get it. I already mentioned that Infiniti was benchmarking the 3 and that it was a compliment to BMW. Benchmarking is not necessarily an attempt to copy but to strive for similar(not exactly the same) results. Nobody is saying any car is overall better than the 3 in this segment. Just saying there are viable competitors that may be better for some people that don't need the epitome of driving dynamics and care more about other things. If Infiniti was trying to clone a 328 which is what it was price competitive with they could have given it 240hp instead of 325hp and called it a day. They chose a different route. Does a car have to be a clone of something else to compete in this category. Not everyone wants a BMW...plain and simple. I just wrote a check for 40k for a new Acura. I could just have well written one for a BMW or even more. But I really don't want one. I have nothing against BMW....it's the owners that are obnoxious sometimes.

    I do not remember reading that Infiniti was not trying to build their version of a 3 series.

    Kind of hard to prove a negative now isn't it? Do you also not remember them saying they were?
  • sweendogysweendogy Posts: 1,052
    My prev post was deleted.

    So

    +1
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,207
    I recieved at least a half dozen "thank you's" for having bought a X5d. Made me proud to have "bought American".

    Interesting post. Thanks.

    My experience has been that most people like to do good work. They just need to be shown how and then left alone to do it.
  • andres3andres3 CAPosts: 5,284
    My experience has been that most people like to do good work. They just need to be shown how and then left alone to do it.

    I would like to think that's true, but it seems it's an epidemic of lazy people who have or take no pride in their own work.

    Or maybe the Big 3 hired all of those people and the rest of the labor force is as you say!

    :)
  • tlongtlong CaliforniaPosts: 4,701
    Andres, I had a '98 A4 and I kept it for 88K miles. It wasn't a disaster but it wasn't fabulous, either. The radio volume acted up. The sunroof track cracked and was replaced under warranty. The worst problem was the cooling problem where the temp would start moving way up while climbing hills on a hot day. Many visits to the dealer on my dime while they tried the fan clutch, the thermostat, the radiator, etc. Over $1K on repairs and still not really fixed.

    Yet I LOVED that car for its interior and its driving. I now own an '05 TL and yet I still miss the Audi. But let me tell you that at 128K on the TL, my only repairs were a OAT temp sensor recall and replacing a couple of door handle trims that fell off. Oh, and the right window regulator sometimes sticks. That's it. So I wouldn't call your Audi experience all that good, certainly not against the best of the Japanese brands.

    But I totally get the commitment to the German cars. When I own German I wish I had Japanese reliability. When I own Japanese I miss the German experience.

    Sigh.
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 6,896
    Maybe the auto crisis during the recession turned GM around once and for all. Maybe the new Cadillacs really are world class cars, with world class build, materials and performance. Only time will tell. But, given past history, it's not like we haven't heard this story before.

    At the end of the day, both management and the UAW have to cooperate. If not, you end up with more Azteks than CTSs.

    Personally, I'm anxious to see the new TL, if/when it is released. The news that trickles out seems to point to a gas/electric built for performance.

    Until then, we're really enjoying our German rides.

    Speaking of Jags......my sister has an S-Type that has to be close to 10 years old. Not a single blip. She's looking at replacing it with an XF.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    edited October 2012
    I agree with much of what you say. And, in fact, In 2004 I bought a TL 6-speed that was even less than a clone of a 3 series than the G35. I got a fun to drive "sporty" (vs. sport) sedan that had more room for the family, good ergonomics and technology, and excellent reliability.

    But....I would still contend that part of infiniti's problem is self inflicted. They themselves tried to compare the g35 to the 3 series in marketing materials. And by producing a coupe version that is essentially a refined 370z with a back seat, they were clearly hoping to win the comparison on performance and driving dynamics.

    You can keep contending that they are a viable alternative for other reasons and attributes. I agree. But flight can also contend that, unlike the TL or Lexus ES, the G set itself up for and encouraged a more direct comparison to the 3 series on those attributes that fell short.

    The G is what it is and people can and do buy it based ( hopefully) upon the actual attributes.
  • "I would like to think that's true, but it seems it's an epidemic of lazy people who have or take no pride in their own work."

    Actually at the BMW plant in Greenville SC they don't hire "lazy" people. Competition is high for jobs there and they have their choice of good people. I had a relative who worked there plus I know someone else who went through the hiring process.
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 6,896
    m6user....I think Infiniti marketed/positioned the G as competition for the BMW 3 series. Problem with that is, BMW is a moving target. They keep upping the ante, sometimes in as little as major upgrades happening every 2-3 model years.

    So, Infiniti is left competing on price, instead......"almost" as good as a BMW, but at a lesser price. Nothing wrong with that. Ask any small business person how that works out. You must have very large quantity of scale to compete on price. Out of all the parameters any company wants to use as a competitive advantage, price would rank at the very bottom.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,897
    edited October 2012
    I don't disagree at all that Infiniti tried to be closer to a BMW 328 than either Lexus or Acura and marketed itself as such. What I don't agree with is that Infiniti was trying to copy exactly the experience of driving a BMW 3. I really don't pay much attention to manufacturer press release info or commercials as that is just hype.

    IMO the G has some attributes(MPG not being one, it sucks and another reason I did not buy) that are better than the 3 which I think (most) everyone can agree on ie. power, interior sophistication, low(long term) maint. and repairs. In other ways it is about equal ie resale value, dealer experience. The area where it and just about every Asian or American car falls short is in the suspension, steering gear and weight distribution which gives the BMW such a dynamic driving experience that hasn't been duplicated. But I also argue that the vast majority of people buying the 3 don't use, need or appreciate that driving dynamic as they lease their auto(like over 90% take rate) tranny "beemers" to impress. And that comment was not meant to insult the true enthusiasts that buy it for the drive and not the show. So if you take that factor away as a real draw then things equal out a bit more. The new ATS is apparently very close and maybe better in some respects from the reviews that I've read but it is too new to really even form an opinion on yet. Although I'm sure many BMW fanboys have pretty much written if off already.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,897
    So, Infiniti is left competing on price, instead

    Disagree. I won't repeat for the nth time some of the attributes of the G that can compete with the BMW besides just price but suffice to say that it has things that people look for in a ELLPS besides just price. I do agree that there is nothing wrong with being second best at a lesser price if you have a business model that makes a profit by doing it. Agreed that if ALL you are going to sell on is price than huge scale is necessary but as I've already said, I don't believe that is the case with Infiniti. Street prices for the G are much less than the 3 but so are just about every other comparable car out there. When you have the cache you can price high. That's capitalism.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,707
    Although I'm sure many BMW fanboys have pretty much written if off already.

    Which is to be expected. After all, they don't call them "fanboys" for nothing.
  • The quality of conversation here has gone downhill due to labeling certain drivers and some of the juvenile jabs at other members. Let's try to stay on track discussing vehicles and not what we think of other members or drivers of vehicle brands.

    Need help navigating? kirstie_h@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    edited October 2012
    I think we agree more than not, and I never said nor meant to suggest that Infiniti was trying to copy the BMW 3 with the G. And I agree with you that there are many attributes by which to compare these cars, both performance related and non-perforamcne related.

    That said, I am not sure how you conclude that the G is "better" than the 3 with respect to power. In just about every road test I've seen, the 335i is anywhere from a couple to quite a few ticks faster than the G37 in a straight line. Here's one source if you go down to the Infiniti header and check out the comparison test with the TL SH-AWD, 335i and S4. If anyone has the upper hand on the 335i in measured performance it's Audi. But even I would argue that there are subjective things about the Audi I don't like - nose heavy, heavy heavy, AWD vs. RWD - all lead to a somewhat less nimble feeling than I prefer. Can't dispute the fact that they post great numbers, just don't like the subjective feel of how Audi gets there. I'd say the same thing about a Porsche 911 C4S vs. C2S.

    TL vs. 335 vs. G37 vs. S4
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,897
    I conclude it by comparing the G to the 328 which I specifically stated in my post. IMO the G and 328 are the respective ELLPS models and at about the same entry MSRP. A 335 with leather, etc is about $10k more. I use leather at it's standard in the Infiniti. The base TL and the sh-awd TL is a similar situation but the price difference isn't as substantial. Same with the A4 vs. S4. The 328, TL, G, A4 all are about the same starting MSRP I believe.
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 2,487
    To be honest, I "saved" for about 20 years to buy the XK. Tried to keep a low profile at work, since it costs twice my salary... :surprise: That didn't work. I've had EVPs come up to me and note, "beautiful car." I'm sure they've contacted HR to find out who I am...

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

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