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Luxury Performance Sedans

11516182021335

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  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Thanks, and wouldn't you know it I got my issue today. The whole camparo lacked the depth of their usual comparos. No sidebars or anything just rankings.

     

    I must say I'm impressed by the M35/45 combo, now all I have to do is see one on the street to truly gauge the styling.

     

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I agree, power isn't the reason why the 530i came in 3rd, and more power for the 2006 model isn't going to change the automags biggest problems with the car, styling and that idrive stuff.

     

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I have to say I think overall the M35/45, GS300/430 or RL will ever singularly catch the 5-Series let alone the E-Class in sales. That said I do think the 5-Series will dip to about 40K units this year and the E-Class to just under 50K, but the RL I think stands to be in the biggest trouble once the A6, M, and GS hit their stride. The M is a better value and the GS has the Lexus quality/dealer maching behind it. The RL looks overpriced from where I stand, not an Acura trait as noted above. The crowd that likes the Japanese luxury cars already think the E and 5-Series are overpriced so I doubt they'll suffer any dramatic drop in sales this year. Plus they aren't exactly sitting still. Then where does the A6 and STS fit in? MT pretty much trashed the STS V6. From what I've read Infiniti and Acura both want to move between 20-25K units this year compared to their pitiful 3K and 6K units for the last M and RL. Can they do it?

     

    M
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    My guesstimates for the next few years: the M35\45 continues to dominate in comparisons, and does further damage to the German superiority image and BMW especially. The GS bows to a reasonably good reception, and Lexus continually adds new engines and a hybrid for several years to keep the car in the spot light. The RL's 15 minutes of fame end, and dealers will quickly start discounting the car. Acura will add some kind of sports\appearance package, but it wont be enough.

     

    The 5 series sells worse than hoped\expected. BMW puts a sticker on the dash to explain how to access the climate functions as in 7 series. Audi chips away a bit at BMW and Mercedes buyers who refuse to buy Japanese, but the A6 never amounts to more than a midpack player. The E class continues to win the sales charts because its a Mercedes.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 28,572
    and some advertising... what really is going to make the new M35/45 sell any better than the last M? If I recall, that car had the horsepower and price advantage, also..

     

    I think almost every M35 will be priced at $47K or above.. so, it won't exactly be a screaming bargain.. and, even with the V8, you are talking about a $55K car... How big is that market?

     

    Other than being "new", I don't see big things for it... I sort of remember the last M selling for $10K off MSRP.. I see big rebates and incentives coming for this one also...

     

    Most people aren't like us geeks here on Edmunds.. they don't read the car magazine comparisons.. The mid-size luxury market is a tough nut to crack.. There is the 5-series, the E-class... and the also-rans..

     

    The new entrants do okay for the first year or two, when they come out with something new... but, they tail off badly after that.. What is going to make this car any different?

     

    regards,

    kyfdx

    MODERATOR
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  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    All good points, but the M literally has no choice but to do better than the previous model. I can't do any worse...lol!

     

    M
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    "what really is going to make the new M35/45 sell any better than the last M? If I recall, that car had the horsepower and price advantage, also.."

     

    Do us all a favor and read something about the new M before saying its "same old". Then look at G35 sales and G20 sales. Its about the same with the new M vs. old in terms of changes that Infiniti has made.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 28,572
    Gee.. I read a little bit.. haven't you noticed?

     

    1) The G35 had nothing to do with the G20, other than the letter "G". Not the same car in size, purpose, FWD vs. RWD, etc, etc... The G35 was basically an all new car, on an all new platform.. The G20 was a rebadged Nissan Sentra. The G20 was the entry level Infiniti, while the G35 was slotted in above the I35. Plus.. not sure what any of that has to do with the mid-sized luxury market, even if you could link those two models together..

     

    2) Other than AWD, the M35/45 isn't offering anything the admittedly bland old model didn't have. New styling, but about the same power and luxury appointments.. But, that isn't even my point.. The point is... At those price points, mid-size luxury buyers don't even have Infiniti on their radar... I'm sure they'll get a little buzz and start off fine, but give it a couple of years and sales will be right back down in Lexus GS territory.. Which, is where most of Infiniti's "M" buyers will come from..

     

    3) For more Infiniti success stories, perhaps we could discuss the Q45? Or the J30 (another mid-size debacle).

     

    regards,

    kyfdx

    MODERATOR
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  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    "Gee.. I read a little bit.. haven't you noticed?"

     

    Nope, as you seem to think the new M is the old car with a body lift. "The G35 was basically an all new car, on an all new platform." So is the M. The old car sat on the Q45s platform. The new M rides on a specially developed stretched and tweaked G35 FM platform. Rigidity is up in huge amounts over the G35, and by about 50,000% over the old M45. The old M never offered a V6, and it didnt have AWD. The transmission has been significantly revised, as evidenced by fastest in class acceleration. It handily whoops the 300hp Acura RL, and offers every luxury feature that the competition has, including a few that they dont. Who else has LDW and rear wheel steering?

     

    "For more Infiniti success stories, perhaps we could discuss the Q45? Or the J30 (another mid-size debacle)."

     

    Hey the J30, a car from 1992 or so. That sure is relevant to 2005 Infiniti, isnt it? For Infiniti success stories with Carlos Ghosn at the helm, how about taking a look at the G35 and FX. Infiniti is here to stay, and as of right now they are stomping on Acura and gunning for BMW.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Hey guys I draw the line at the Infiniti J30, my aunt loved that car! Get off it...lol!

     

    M
  • gabmangabman Posts: 284
    Interesting debate that you guys have going on here. As a current G35 and Acura TSX owner and a soon to be M35 Owner ( just awaiting a test drive), I will weigh in with following comments.

     

    Acura RL - Test drove it when it first came out,had a nice feel to it and lots of bells and whistles, everything was fine until I asked the price Cad $ 72,000.00, laughed at Sales Guy and told him to call me when they drop price by at least $10,000.00.

     

    Lexus GS 300 - Saw it at Auto Show, even though car is supposed to be at dealers in late February, Lexus saw fit to display this car at the show on a rotating round stage with a DO NOT Touch sign on it. Why even bother showing it if one could not properly check it out. From what I was able to see, not worth the CAD $ 68,000.00 that they are asking, perhaps if they would have seen fit to let us look and sit in it I may have a different opinion. Tough luck Lexus, I need to get a car now.

     

    Audi A6 - Test drove and obtained all pricing, really like this car however......

    Base price is CAD $59,500.00, added in exact options that are in the M35 as follows.

    Premium PKG - $4300.00

    (Sunroof, Bi-Xenon adaptive headlights,Bose,Wood)

    Convenience PKG - $ 1450.00

    (Driver info,seat memory,homelink,dimming mirror)

    Premium Leather $ 1500.00

    Rear parktronic $500.00

    Voice Recongnition $500.00

    Advance Key $1100.00

    Tire Pressure monitor $350.00

    18" mags/4 season tires $1400.00

    and now we are up to CAD $ 70,600.00

    80,000 KMS warranty instead of M35 100,000KMS

    Must state that AUDI includes ALL service/parts for duration of warranty whereas Infiniti does not.

     

    BMW 5 Series - Very nice car, spoke with a sales guy at the auto show, told him what I wanted ( actually what I would settle for given my budget)

    told me he would call me Monday morning, am still waiting for the call.

     

    M35 - has everything and more than I was looking for plus very good lease rates given very high residuals as this is a 2006 model.

     

    I could enter this debate over the pros and cons of German/Japanese but the bottom line is that I change my car every 3 years, I have loved driving my G35, Infiniti has been very good to me, reliability has been excellent an no other manufacturer can offer what Infiniti is offering in their new M35 for the same or even close numbers.

     

    Time will only tell if I made the right decision. Back in '91 I leased a first generation Q45 for 3 years, landed up keeping it for a 4th year because I liked it so much. I think Infiniti got it right with the G35 and everything else that is following it.
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,262
    Helpful post, Gabman.

     

    Remember your early participation in the G boards a few years ago.

     

    Keep us posted as your "M" adventure continues.
  • jrock65jrock65 Posts: 1,371
    No one is saying that the M will sell better than the E or the 5. It'll probably sell about 2000 per month though

     

    As lexusguy said, the 2006 M is a totally different car from the 2004 M. About the only thing it carries over is the V8, and a tweaked one at that.

     

    By your reasoning, no non-established car can ever be successful in this segment. If you offer a compelling car at a good price, people will start noticing little by little. You build a reputation over time.

     

    As far as sales going down near the end of a model run, that is true with almost every car. However, when the G35 Sedan first came out, it sold about 3000 per month. Now, they're selling about 4200 per month.

     

    It's very interesting that the people most "concerned" about M sales seem to be the BMW crowd.
  • Right On Gabman!

    I'd feel sorry for the Acura RL BUT the Canadian marketing people must have been smoking something the day they priced the new RL! This could be the Edsel for Canadian Acura delaers. Sell one or two and then stop selling them.

    I too own an early production G35(04/02 build date) and it's been bullet proof.

    Anyway, enough said about the RL. The M in either the 6 or 8 will be tough to beat.

    Have a great day Everyone;

    Babs
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 28,572
    1) Having owned eight Honda/Acuras.. I doubt I can be called one of the BMW crowd.. even though my wife drives one... I'm not sure what you mean by "concerned"? Isn't this a forum to compare luxury sedans? Where should I post these comments, concerning my opinions?

     

    2) My reasoning isn't that there will never be a successful competitor in this segment... just that it is probably the toughest segment to crack..

     

    3) Okay, okay... I know the "M" is an entirely new car.. I got that.. I read.. really.

     

    4) The G35 is a big, big hit in the $30K-$38K range..... I don't disagree.. name another "succesful" car from Infiniti.. (Please don't say I35).

     

    5) Infiniti has a recognition problem... Many people have never heard of it... It might not seem that way on Edmunds, but to the average car buyer, they are a non-entity... I heard a big secret the other day.. People that spend $50K on a car... they care about the brand... even the biggest driving enthusiasts..

     

    regards,

    kyfdx

    MODERATOR
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  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    If they keep winning comparison tests and making the 10 best list, Infiniti will get noticed. I, for one, am now seeing almost as many FX45s on the road as Lexus RX, and quite a bit more of both than Acura MDX.
  • jrock65jrock65 Posts: 1,371
    1) Hm... for some reason I thought you only owned Bimmers. Sorry about that.

     

    2) Agreed. It is a tough segment to crack. No one is saying that the M will be sales leader. I'm thinking, if the RL with one $50k variant can sell 2000 per month, the M with 3 variants ranging from $40k to $55k can sell 2000 per month. Acura never had success in this segment either. There is more competition now, especially from the GS, but I think that the M is a compelling enough car to be successful.

     

    3) .

     

    4) The FX: It sells about 2800 per month, not bad for a non-conventional SUV. Again, "successful" does not mean breaking sales records or anything. The QX: It sells about 2000 per month. Not bad for a $50k vehicle. The G35 Coupe: It is the best selling luxury coupe in the U.S.

     

    5) Infiniti does have a recognition problem. But it's much better than say, 3 years ago. I think the M is good enough for people to take a look.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 28,572
    I don't disagree with the quality of the cars (somewhat)..

     

    I see a lot of FX45s, too.. But, then again.. how can you miss them?

     

    I'll have to check, but I'm guessing they are far, far behind the sales of the RX..

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  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I would argue that the full size truck US market is a MUCH tougher nut to crack than any luxury class. The LS has already proven luxury doesnt necessarily belong to Europe and only Europe. The Tundra and Titan have made a good start, but they still dont even make a dent to big three truck sales.

     

    "I see a lot of FX45s, too.. But, then again.. how can you miss them? "

     

    I think thats exactly what Infiniti was going for. You cant miss a Cayenne on the road, and you cant miss an FX.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 28,572
    At least not every Infiniti is a re-badge of a Nissan.. Designs that set themselves apart from the Nissans can only help...

     

    I don't think the RL will do much beyond this year and next... I think it will have the same problem that I propose for the "M".. Not enough status for 50 large...

     

    regards,

    kyfdx

    MODERATOR
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  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    The RL just doesnt fit anywhere. Its too expensive for the V6 crowd, and its not fast enough for the V8 crowd. I agree though, by the end of '06, RL who?
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 28,572
    True.. Ford and Chevy truck buyers aren't going to buy a Toyota or Nissan truck..

     

    But, I think it was more to capture the import buyer that had no choice previously.. That is a big enough market right there, without trying to take away the traditional domestic truck buyer..

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  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 28,572
    I have the day off today, can you tell?

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  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Hah. Yeah its a bit of a slow day for me as well.
  • I waffle between the lease/buy decision every time I am looking for a new car. That decision, by itself, is probably the most important determining factor in the whole process- it essentially chooses the vehicle for me once I've narrowed the choices.

     

    In that respect, the price and reliability issues change dramatically based on lease/buy. In this market, there are MANY leasing customers trying to make that jump from the entry luxury up to the mainstream lux market.

     

    For example, BMW is overpriced IMO, compared to other similarly optioned vehicles in the segment- with relation to MSRP. However.....if you were to lease, BMW jumps out as one of the most affordable- if not THE most affordable- player in this market. Infiniti rarely offers leasing incentives, and neither does Acura. Audi has been known to introduce the occasional incentive, but they keep their residuals low for the most part. Right now, leasing an RL or A6 is going to run you $700+. Information I've received from my long time Infiniti dealer indicate we should expect similar numbers for a 49k M.

     

    Now.....talk purchase and you've got a different story. Audi and BMW are reliability issues (at least compared to the Japanese), BMW is higher priced than all but Mercedes. Acura, Infiniti, and Audi are all about the same price point for similar cars- you can do 4.2 Audi or M45 Infiniti, but the power plant is then much different from the RL. I don't know enough about the new GS, but I think we can safely assume quality to be excellent. No idea on driving characteristics, as I've never driven the outgoing model.

     

    Simply put, when I buy I will buy Japanese. When I lease, I'll lease the best car for the best value. In my current situation, it's a 530. Over $150 difference per month than Acura or A6.
  • mariner7mariner7 Posts: 509
    New M will be totally different from old M in the marketplace.

     

    When G35 came out, people were saying, no matter how good it was, it'd have terrible residuals, because that was what all Infinitis had. I think Kelly Blue now has G35 as having top residuals in its class.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 28,572
    I agree about the G35.. but, I think the $30K-$36K market is a lot different from the $45K-$55K market...

     

    Also, many more leasers in the $400-$600 range, than in the $700-$800 range.. Mostly buyers when you get up that high...

     

    We'll see, I guess..

    MODERATOR
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  • I beg to differ folks, I don't think Infiniti has a recognition problem. In what sense?, maybe I don't get the context. But compared to the new M, the old M45 design looked dated and mundane when it hit the streets, and despite strong performance and price discounts and all, it was a yawner, folks looked at it and passed.

     

    By contrast the G35 is a runaway success. Infiniti had been around years before the G35 hit the streets and it's sales figures do not point to a recognition problem. Will the new M35/45 be able to duplicate the G35?, I guess it remains to be seen. However if it offers styling as it appears to, performance(ditto) and value, who knows. If it fails, it definitely would not be because of recognition. The Jaguar S is one of the most recognized vehicles, classic retro looks and all and it sales numbers suck. What gives?.

    It aint recognition folks.
  • gabmangabman Posts: 284
    Gold 233790,

     

    Further to my post earlier this morning, the BMW sales guy finally called me back ( Maybe he reads

    Edmunds, lol). Interestingly enough he quoted me a price on a 530 that is still slightly higher than the M35 however the 530 did not have half of the equipment that the M35 has including all wheel drive.

     

    Are you sure that you are comparing comparably equipped cars?
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,313
    The RL just doesnt fit anywhere. Its too expensive for the V6 crowd, and its not fast enough for the V8 crowd. I agree though, by the end of '06, RL who?

     

    by that reasoning, the same goes for a comparably equipped M35.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

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