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Luxury Performance Sedans

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Comments

  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    Its an awful lot of money for a TL with AWD.

    Excellent description. Except an AWD TL would be able to out-handle the larger RL. A reasonably priced AWD TL would be the prescription for double digit growth sales at Acura.

    So what is the solution for the RL? How about a new platform that is not derived from the Accord. How about a RWD RL? How about a V8 RL? And if not a V8 RL then a powerful V6 hybrid RL. Unfortunately Honda is not pondering such alternatives and RL looks like it will share the same neglected fate as the Infiniti Q.
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    In addition to your suggestion of a better engine (either V8 or hybrid 6), how about a "stretch" version to improve the back seat. Then it could at least compete with the M, and better distinguish itself from the TL. I have heard of a lot of people who rejected the RL for a family car based on the cramped rear area (of course, this complaint applies to the GS as well). As Acura's "flagship" sedan, IMO that's giving up too much of the market.
  • Its an awful lot of money for a TL with AWD.

    You may not like the RL, but it most certainly is not a TL with AWD. There is no comparison between the two. Whether the RL is worth that much more money is up for discussion, but it is a far nicer car than the TL.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    True Tagman!
    The highest compliment paid to Bangle is the design of the 2007 LS!
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I was exaggerating a bit for effect, Dewey!
    I realize my poetic license should be suspended.

    You can sentence me to a grilling by Oprah..... ;)
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    What I need to know is what BMW model costs $525,000? :confuse: Can we get some pics?

    :P
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    That BMW must have been signed by Chris Bangle himself to justify the $525k price tag.

    Nothing like accuracy in journalism, I always say. ;)

    Regardless of how much the BMW actually cost, it's still a great story.

    You just can't make this stuff up!

    Thanks for sharing it, Dewey. It made my day! :)
  • Over 80% of the A6's sold are V6's, at the same "class point" it is possible to spend ~$60K for a 530 series BMW and THAT doesn't have a V8. Most of the STS's (but I do not know the percentages on this one) are V6's, the Infiniti dealer here says the M35 M35X (especially the X) is the biggest seller.

    And so on.

    While I understand the journalists need for an LPS car that at least offers a V8, the only ones that sell for prices that seem to keep the buyer's attentions are the A6's and the STS.

    I have not seen a GS with a V8 on the highway, but have seen several M45's -- most of the Mercedes E's are 6's, by far.

    At one point, I read a memo that said Audi of America expected 90% of the new A6's to be sold as 3.2's, apparently is has been somewhat higher than that (I don't know.)

    A 290HP or whatever it was devalued to Acura RL doesn't need a V8 to sell over 1,500 units a month is my point.

    It may need to be a bit bigger, I dunno.

    And, if the price HAS dropped or the deals improved, this would seem to be a reason for sales to be on the incline not decline.

    With AWD growing in popularity (take the 5 series alone as an example), what would an RWD RL offer really? The customers seem to be picking up the AWD cars like "hotcakes" (again at least in our neck of the woods.)

    The Acura looking too much like the Accord COULD be a reason. But the RL is one seriously nice car and if, as you say, is dropping in price, ought to be a contender.

    There must be something else afoot here.

    Who knows?

    Obviously, not I.

    Now who's cockeyed idea was it to bring the A6 3.2 to the US market for an MSRP of $1,800 less in front wheel drive?

    My dealer won't even stock it -- says it hurts the image.

    Heck, other than the odd A4 convertible, they don't carry anything other than quattros.

    Curious, what's happening to Acura. Could it be another Phaeton? Gasp! :confuse:
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    It's nicer, yes, but $12K+ nicer? The TL is better looking, just as fast, has just about all of the technology, (integrated into a much more attractive center stack) and is basically the same size.

    I also hope that Acura has the sense to not let this RL sit for another decade with no major changes.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    My gut guess is that when presented with a "FWD or AWD" choice, most folks in the LPS arena will almost certainly opt for AWD. That having been said, when presented with a "RWD or AWD" option, many folks in this arena will choose RWD over AWD, me included.

    My personal prejudice/bias/irrational belief (PBIB) is that FWD is not viable in the LPS market, and as such, offering the likes of a FWD A6 is silly. On the other hand, said PBIB leads me to prefer RWD over AWD, even if all else was equal (i.e. weight, weight distribution, cost and suspension options), meaning that RWD is a viable option to AWD for these types of cars.

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • drtraveldrtravel Posts: 395
    And in the prior posting of Jan '06 sales, the STS's numbers were missing. Are they now known?

    1,668 units sold in January
  • drtraveldrtravel Posts: 395
    Total Car Sales
    BMW - 15,455
    Cadillac - 11,082
    Lexus - 10,979
    Acura - 10,140
    M-B - 9,728
    Audi - 6,084
    Infiniti - 5,883

    Total Truck Sales
    Lexus - 8,679
    Acura - 3,841
    BMW - 3,819
    Cadillac - 3,651
    M-B - 2,741
    Infiniti - 2,174
    Audi - Q7 coming...

    Total Vehicle Sales
    Lexus - 19,658
    BMW - 19,274
    Cadillac - 14,733
    Acura - 13,981
    M-B - 12,469
    Infiniti - 8,713
    Audi - 6,084

    For comparison, Honda sold 22,397 Accords last month
  • It's nicer, yes, but $12K+ nicer? The TL is better looking, just as fast, has just about all of the technology, (integrated into a much more attractive center stack) and is basically the same size.

    I've driven my RL since Oct 2004 and have ridden extensively in a friend's TL. For me, there's no doubt the RL is $12K nicer. The RL is quieter, rides nicer, has a better NAV, and definitely feels more luxurious, and, of course, has AWD. It's all subjective, of course, but I would never consider a TL over my RL.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    "You may not like the RL, but it most certainly is not a TL with AWD. There is no comparison between the two. Whether the RL is worth that much more money is up for discussion, but it is a far nicer car than the TL."

    What, pray tell, is "far nicer" about the RL than the TL? I had an RL loaner for 7 days last spring after a red light runner removed the front bumper of my TL 6-speed. So I got ample time behind the wheel.

    Aesthetics: My assessment is that the RL has a very attractive interior - but so does the TL. I found very nominal differences in material quality. The amenities are virtually identical. The traffic based navigation was actually annoyingly inacurate in the Washington DC area, missing Beltway backups, etc.

    Performance: Dissapointing, based upon my preferences. The "Super Handling" AWD wasn't. The RL is excessively heavy at 4,000 lbs and felt like it. Not only did it fall short of a BMW 5 series in driving dynamics, but was neither as nimble handling nor as quick as my FWD TL 6-speed. I will concede that the RL is quieter and provides a more "insulated" cabin, but unfortunately at the expense of being a car I could never label as "fun to drive". It has more in common with a Toyota Avalon than a 550i 6-speed on that front.

    I have been reprimanded by others who claim that I am misguided to think the RL was intended to appeal to "driving enthusiasts". But I believe that the RL offers neither adequate performance nor significantly increased luxury over the TL to be a market success. And the sales numbers seem to back me up.
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    Curious, what's happening to Acura.

    mark - one thing that will be happening over the course of the next years is that Honda/Acura made an announcement very recently that as ALL new Acura models are released moving forward, they will be UNIQUE to Acura, and NOT derivatives of other Honda models. That says a LOT . . . as it will allow for Acura to independently soar further along . . . to where, though, will be seen!
    TagMan
  • warthogwarthog Posts: 216
    Bangle curves? What Bangle curves? The revulsion is to the Bangle angles. And the stupid eyebrows. And the Bangle Butt.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    What revulsion? BMW 5 sales are going through the roof!
    They are up 42.8% since January 2005.
    A ringing endorsement of those exotic Egyptian goddess-like eyes and that incredibly aggressive and bold innovative style.

    The votes are in and the folks in the USA have voted YES for Chris Bangle.

    Sales of the 5 series have far outstripped those of the 3 series since January 2005.
    When is the last time that happened?
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,246
    Perhaps, in part.

    The other part may be pent-up demand for an AWD BMW. Go figure -- I wouldn't have one on a bet. Clearly many others feel (or, one hopes, think) differently.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I don't buy it. The 3 series has been available in AWD yet the 5 series is way ahead of the 3 series in sales for the last 12 months:
    42.8% vs. 21.5%.
    This is unheard of!!!
    The 3 has always been their biggest mover.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    What I need to know is what BMW model costs $525,000? Can we get some pics?

    None. I guess he needed big pockets for the spare change :confuse:
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    don't buy it. The 3 series has been available in AWD yet the 5 series is way ahead of the 3 series in sales for the last 12 months

    Overall the sales of the 3 series is far higher than the 5 series.

    The reason sales growth compared to last January is higher for the 5 series than the 3 series is because:

    1) Last January there was no such thing as a 5 series xi. Last January there was such a thing as a 3 series xi.

    2) Last year there was no such thing as a 5 series Touring. Last year there was such a thing as a 3 series touring.

    If you compare the January sales of the 06 550i, 530i and 525i to the January sales of the 05 545i, 530i and 525i models then you will notice that sales have actually dropped for all three of these RWD models.

    But overall you are correct the sales of the 5 series has been terrific.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    You won't have to buy only the BMW to get the Bangled look . . . the way it's revealing itself even on the new MB's and Lexus.

    Going to have to disagree here. I don't know about Lexus, but Mercedes isn't following Bangle in the least. The rear of the S-Class is from the Maybach and the Maybach concept was shown way back in 1997 - long before anyone named Bangle ever designed a BMW and years before the 2002 7-Series (the car that started it all) hit the road. The wheel arches on the S-Class clearly aren't from the house of Bangle either.

    M
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    When I recently saw a spy photo of the upcoming E-Class, it prompted me to think of new MB's, as well as new Lexus models, as having Bangle influence or style. I'll wait to see the official E-Class before I make a final determination on this, and I take it that you agree with me that new Lexus models show Bangle influence. The wheel arches on the new S are clearly Mercedes. There is no disagreement on this.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Yeah I would wait to see what the next E actually looks like since it is at least 3-4 years off.

    M
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    "Overall, the sales of the 3 series is far higher than the 5 series."

    Yeah and overall we're all dead. :cry:

    I gave you the most recent one year period of stats in the USA, which show the 5 series outselling the 3 series by double (42.8% vs 21.5%).
  • Let's see, you drove an RL loaner for seven days, I've driven my RL for over 15 months...... I would never pretend to be a driving enthusiast, so maybe that's the difference. All I can say is I've been totally satisfied with my RL and believe it was well worth the extra money over the TL.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    how CR raves about the TL, but is quite lukewarm on the RL.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Well, CR lumps the LPS and full size lux cars into the same category, so the RL has to take a backseat to cars that it would not normally be compared to, such as the LS and S-class, at least in CR's book. The RL did manage to pick up a 10 best award, but unlike the TSX, I dont think it will be able to pull that off again.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I notice in the latest issue of CR, the TL is listed at the top of the "Family Sedans, over $25,000" ratings.
    Lumping it in with the Camry, Avalon and the Accord?
    Doesn't seem right.

    Previously, the RL was listed in 9th place in the "Luxury Sedans" category.
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    I gave you the most recent one year period of stats in the USA, which show the 5 series outselling the 3 series by double (42.8% vs 21.5%).

    Howard, hopefully you know the difference between a percentage increase and total sales. The 5 series does not "outsell" the 3 series by double; it's actually the other way around. In 2005, BMW sold 106,950 3s and 52,722 5s.

    BMW news release

    We all know you love your 5, but that doesn't change the facts.
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