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Luxury Performance Sedans

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  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,312
    The vast majority of people who drive cars in the lux or near-lux categories lease them. I won't trouble you with my riff on that subject.

    If one leases, one couldn't care less how well the vehicle does after it's turned in. Plus which, while in possession of the car, no money needs to change hands. Hey, everything was covered by the warranty, and my time spent taking the vehicle in 1-XX times (I got a loaner!!) is worth nothing. What's not to like?

    Point being, high-mileage data of any value whatsoever for cars that are mostly leased is hard to come by. We're left with anecdotal stuff, which is better than nothing.

    Unless it doesn't support or advance your point of view.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I have not been able to find reliability data that compares repair records of cars between, say, 50K and 100K. Have you?

    "Using data from the 2001-2005 surveys, we compared how the vehicle lines from the major manufacturers fared as their vehicles age. We combined manufacturers' problem rates for one-year-old vehicles from each of the five surveys and did the same for two year old vehicles, and so on. Some key findings:

    * The Asian manufacturers are more reliable on average, and continue to age more gracefully.
    * American manufacturers still have not closed the gap between them and the Asians. Ford has been, and continues to be the most reliable among the domestic manufacturers for older vehicles.
    * The European manufacturers continue to lag behind. Mercedes-Benz has fallen off in recent years."

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  • I'm willing to be nitpicky here, statistically speaking. I've seen those CR graphs, but have not been able to read the numbers. Nor can I find any data (typical of CR) about how many units of each "competitor" are included in each year's comparisons, nor whether the cars at, for example, age 6, have been driven a similar number of miles.

    As one exazmple, of how CR narrates its survey results, CR asserted: "According to our latest (2005) subscriber survey, Japanese and Korean vehicles still have the fewest problems on average." What are the differences between those Asian and American or European makes? Asian vehicles have 12 problems per 100 vehicles in the previous 12 months. U.S. makes had an average problem rate of 18 problems per 100. European makes, had 21 problems per 100 vehicles. So, what the reliability graphs show is that if you own an European car, in the worst case scenario, you had two repairs performed on your car in the past year, while the average owner of an Asian car had one repair performed.

    Similarly, in the graphs and associated explanations copied by lexusguy, all CR will refer to is "manufacturers' problem rates", which, with CR often does mean that one car will be implied to be statistically more reliable (if it went into the shop for 1.2 repairs a year) than another car (that went into the shop for 1.7 repairs per year).

    I would still assert that none of us can find any data about which we can have a discussion of how often cars need to be repaired as the mileage accumulates.
  • Models with improved reliability
    Audi A6
    Audi S4
    Chevrolet Malibu
    Dodge Durango
    Ford Freestyle
    Hyundai Tucson
    Kia Sorento
    Mazda6
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I would still assert that none of us can find any data about which we can have a discussion of how often cars need to be repaired as the mileage accumulates.

    Yeah, unfortunately CR's reports and the VDS is about all their is. All I can say is that in my experience, critical mechanical parts in Japanese cars, transmissions, pumps, hoses, rotors, etc. tend to last a really long time. The interiors and electronics seem to start falling apart past 175K miles or so, but the cars will keep running.
  • Yeah, unfortunately CR's reports and the VDS is about all their is. All I can say is that in my experience, critical mechanical parts in Japanese cars, transmissions, pumps, hoses, rotors, etc. tend to last a really long time. The interiors and electronics seem to start falling apart past 175K miles or so, but the cars will keep running.

    My guess is that, if we set the discussion point at 175K, we're pretty much down to a few anecdotes on this board. How many of us have kept even a couple of both German and Japanese cars past 175K miles?

    We're into mythology at that point, not statistics. But, hey, whole cultures are guided by mythology and their self-fulfilling prophecy property (e.g. if you believe Japanese cars last forever and you're going to buy a car to keep for ten years, then you'll buy a Japanese car, keep it going to 200K, and tell al your friends it lasted forever; ditto, if you carry a runs-forever myth about German cars) keeps many believers happy.
  • Hey, what about Swedish cars? Everyone seems to forget about them... :)

    You know Saabs & Volvos, they last forever too, well beyond 175K.
    There is one exceptional case where a funny dude named Irv Gordon who still drives his World Record holder and famed Volvo P1800 passed the 2 millions miles mark and counting...(just google Irv Gordon and you'll see)

    OK, let's not count that Volvo (it's an exception to the rule & that dude must have spent half his life driving in his Volvo) but if we bring it up in our discussion the 175K mark seems diminutive in comparisons.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    You know Saabs & Volvos, they last forever too, well beyond 175K.

    In the past, perhaps. Now I'm not so sure. Saabs lately have been pretty mediocre even in their first few years of life. I also don't think that today's Volvos will last for an eternity like those wagons from the '70s. Volvo's reliability in the late '90s stunk. The initial MY S80 was loaded with reliability problems. They've definitely improved a lot since then, but I dont think they are necessarily better than anyone else.
  • I know old Volvo 240s from the late 1980s and early 1990s are still one of the car models likely to be a teenager's first "clunker" in my area.

    The brief exchange highlights an issue we seem to get muddled. We really don't know the correlation among (1) repair-frequency during first three-years; (2) repair-frequency at various post-warranty mileages (when I once bought a cheap used Volvo 240 for a high school nephew, I didn't care if it was a 1990, 1991, or 1992, but, since it was 2000, I wanted to know the mileage); (3) time off the road for unscheduled maintenance (my sister absolutely loves her Mini Cooper; she reported in her CR survey 3 repairs in the first year, which were all minor glitches having nothing to do with driving and which were all taken care of during the day she brought it in for her first scheduled maintenance but which will show up as three dings against Mini in the next CR survey; whereas my neighbor's Lexus RX-300 was in the shop for two weeks for "only one repair", at 3K after he couldn't get the car to move in any gear when he got back in at a shopping center parking lot); (4) variations in satisfaction with total post 100K ownership experience (one of our managers is a keep-Toyota-till-they-fall-apart-guy and his closest personal relationship is with a family-run repair shop, but he loves the whole process, for some perverse reason, in which his "guys" manage to find cheap ways to repair it or keep it going).

    All of which is to say that we have no way, right now, given how data is collected, to know how to bet on the following horse-race: We gather up 150 Japanese, 150 German, and (OK) 150 Swedish cars with 100+K miles. We assign them randomly to 50 families to be driven another 100K -- one of each type of car to each family. When all cars have been driven 200K miles, we add up number of repairs, days in shop for unscheduled service, total cost of repairs. We also ask the test-subjects "If you had to do this again and had to do it with one of the three cars we gave you, which one would you pick?"
  • Generally, I don't think any modern car will ever reached the 2 Million miles mark set by the Volvo P1800 (Yes, including today's Volvo)

    Why? Too much bell & whistle, too many electronics & computer. Mercedes & BMW suffered heavily in reliability recently because of electronic/electrical problems (not mechanical, although you will encounter it sooner or later once you reach 100K miles). Electrical items are bound to fail at some point, making it difficult to diagnose & costly to maintain and repair.

    I think any car from any manufacturer today(with the exception of a few ie Jaguar, mercedes) is a safe bet to reach 100K miles with no problem. After 100K? I would only consider Saab & Volvo (with the exception of certain MY), Honda & Toyota.

    Because after 100K it's not about luxury or performance anymore, it's about how low is the maintenance to keep it running. That's what the buyer of 100K+ vehicles are looking for.

    After 200K? LOL I think most car is (excuse my lingo) a POS by then :P
  • calhoncalhon Posts: 87
    CR demonstrates yet again that they are not very competent in data analysis. There are a number of major problems with these charts.

    1. The charts do not show how problem rates increase with age, because successive points on each graph are for different model years. The graphs are therefore confounded by reliability improvements over the years - about 5 to 6% improvement annually for the past several years.

    This means, for example, that on average at least 30% of the increase in the problem rate of 6 year-old cars compared to 1 year-old cars is due to reliability improvements rather than aging. Note that the 6-year-old cars are 1995 (2001 survey) to 1999 (2005 survey) models, while the 1 year-old cars are 2000 to 2004 models.

    2. The charts are not an accurate reflection of today's cars which are considerably more reliable than cars from the nineties. In addition to problem #1, the combination of data for different model years into each data point (e.g., 1995-1999 models at 6 years) inflates the problem rates all along the charts.

    3. Brand and nationality comparisons are confounded by differences in the rates of reliability improvement over the years. For example, the reliability of Domestic cars have improved faster than the Japanese. The charts therefore exaggerate the differences in later years. The differences may be understated in other specific comparisons.

    In summary, these charts provide neither an accurate picture of problem rates with age, nor a good basis for comparing brands or nationalities.
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,312
    an excellent discussion. I can tell as soon as someone mentions confounding data, that we're in an environment in which statistical analysis is spoken.

    Much unlike the data that's discussed in the media (CR, Powers, etc.), where to be understood is to be found out. I'm relatively confident that each manufacturer has a pretty good handle on what breaks, when & how often. . .and that the information is guarded roughly as well as the gold in Ft. Knox. Warranty claims only begin to explain why. How many dealer service people have looked you straight in the eye and said "why, that's the first time I've ever heard of that?"

    Then, as was pointed out a couple of posts earlier, much of this data doesn't distinguish among 1) a failure that leaves the car immobile, 2) a failure that allows the car to operate at a reduced capability, 3) a failure that doesn't affect the running of the car, but is seriously inconvenient (power window breaks in the "down" position, A/C won't work, windshield wipers won't work), or 4) one of the bells & whistles fails to function (my favourite is a broken sunshade power mechanism).

    It's all the same in the land of "defects," but not in my world.
  • pearlpearl Posts: 336
    as long as your "credibility" is a reflection of your board name, you have none. While you are bashing the Euro marks, why don't you tell us about Toyota's six speed auto? Very reliable, eh? This is not a one-time problem with Toyota autos, but something that has plagued them for many years. Japanese reliabilty has been dropping, and even if they run reliably, who wants to "drive" them?
  • calhoncalhon Posts: 87
    Correction

    I wrote:

    "This means, for example, that on average at least 30% of the increase in the problem rate of 6 year-old cars compared to 1 year-old cars is due to reliability improvements rather than aging."

    I should have written instead:

    "This means, for example, that a significant portion of the increase in the problem rate of 6 year-old cars compared to 1 year-old cars is due to the 30% (minimum) average improvement in reliablity, rather than aging."
  • . . .the desirability of driving the ultra-reliable car?

    If "the driving pleasure" is high in importance, it would seem the past dozen or so posts virtually ignore that aspect of the automotive experience.

    Lord knows, I want more reliable, cars, electronics, appliances, restaurants and human beings. Indeed, I assume we all want "everything" to be more reliable.

    Yet, I would not give up fun, performance, safety and other characteristics just to gain ever greater reliability. As far as I'm concerned, these cars are, as a group, reliable -- some are very reliable. Also most of these cars are likewise good in the fun, performance and safety traits.

    Then, on the other hand, you know what they say, "good is the enemy of great."

    We have, overall, similar cars offered to us -- some are good at reliability and great and other things and vice versa. Those that are great (or reputed to be) at reliability seem good in the other areas.

    Some folks apparently treasure reliability over "greatness" in driving and some just the opposite. The good news is, if good doesn't kill great altogether, we do seem to be improving the reliability of our vehicles (pretty much across the board, with an exception here and there) and the fun, performance and safety, too.

    Drive it like you live! :shades:
  • If "the driving pleasure" is high in importance, it would seem the past dozen or so posts virtually ignore that aspect of the automotive experience."

    Actually, my "variations in total ownership experience" and my suggested question "if you had to go back and pick one, knowing what you know now, which one would you pick?" were targeted right at "driving pleasure" and perhaps even more broadly at "total ownership pleasure" (under which umbrella term I subsume driving pleasure). In fact, looking back over the last few times some variation of Japanomania catalyzed this type of exchange, the total pleasure factor is always marginalized. This whole round appears to go back even further than you note, back to one comment by someone hoping to escape the bad experience they had with a German sedan by switching to a new Japanese vehicle (which, ironically, happened to be the Japanese brand with the worst "reliability" record according to the outfits that make a living by over-dramatizing the statistical significance of the data they gather). Maybe these "reliability" exchanges are part of how we have fun on this forum (our equivalent of "Have a great time at The House of Pain while visiting Vegas"). They seem to arise out of Leon Festinger's cognitive dissonance concept that, for some reason, was written up recently in the Wall Street Journal: once you make a decision to go left your mind fills up with terrible images of what lies in wait for all who go right and you become really attached to the conviction that only by choosing as you chose can anyone hope to be happy. Whoever says that often says they didn't say it (they only meant that they couldn't bring themselves to buy another MB after their's broke down 18 times in three years, which we all totally understand) when one or more people catch it, but usually it appears to be too late to forestall another round of exchanges in which we try to explain why we don't all buy the same car.
  • Mark,

    Isn't this a little bit of a straw man? No one wants to "give up fun, performance, safety and other characteristics just to gain ever greater reliability." The problem is strictly at the margins of each characteristic. Almost all of the cars we're considering are quite good on all characteristics. The question is how much fun or safety are you willing to give up for a given additional bit of reliability?

    This is really hard to measure quantitatively but it certainly makes sense behaviorally, doesn't it? Am I willing to give up the sensation of smiling whenever I anticipate an open road drive in my new car in order to save myself one trip to the dealer per year to take care of an unexpected problem? Not me. On the other hand, would I be willing to give up .5 seconds in the 0-60 and .05 g on a skidpad to save that trip? Probably I would (in particular because I've had such a bad two years with my current ride).

    So I do care about reliability and I'm interested in the discussion that you sound like you're dismissing. But not at the expense of any consideration of fun and safety.
  • I'm not, of course, answering for Mark ... just contributing to the discussion.

    Sometimes it has seemed as if Mark was saying that the purchase of a car is always, in his experience, this wild, emotional, impulsive act, which not only should be, but almost always really is unaffected by what's been written about a car in magazines or in CR and JDP reports.

    But even if that characterization of Mark's position or the one offered by landsdownemike is hyperbolic, I thought Domenick offered a conceptual resolution with his "overall ownership pleasure" concept.

    For me, that allows for the possibility that each car-owning experience will, for each of us, include different weighting on different variables in the equation. One person might be totally bummed out by having had his or her car in the shop for a week each year (even if the dealer immediately put them into a really nice loaner). Another person might find the whole experience of driving a high-maintenance MB sports car to have been worth every penny and every trip to the dealership.

    It's also a bit of a different issue when we're talking prospectively rather than retrospectively. When we get into comments that imply what prospective buyers should keep in mind and how much weight they should put on any quality of a car (as they imagine each car to possess those qualities), then, for some people, what CR and JDP report might weigh heavily. Put another words, a very bad reliability record is probably going to sour the total ownership pleasure for many drivers, even if not for all. As we move down the continuum from "owned a lemon and will never buy one of those again and would recommend no one else buy one or at least not be stupid enough to keep it beyond warranty" to "had a few glitches, but loved it and would do it again," we'll find a multitude of overall ownership assessments which cannot be crammed into a dichotomy such as "reliability matters or doesn't" or "driving pleasure is all that matters or isn't".
  • Yep, that's what they always write. . . .

    They also say, "your mileage may differ. . . ."

    Today, not yesterday, we seem [to me] to be at least moving toward having our cake and eating it too.

    Yesterday, however, whenever I went shopping, it often seemed I could only gain improved reliability by getting a more bland car.

    Lexus cars seem to represent that remark -- at least yesterday.

    Lexus built highly reliable and not much fun to drive cars.

    I was willing to accept "good reliability" but wanted great fun to drive performance.

    I could have a Lexus or a Bimmer or a Lexus or an Audi. I couldn't have the traits I loved in one and wanted in another in the same car at the same time.

    "Tomorrow" when I go shopping, I will again look for two, two, two cars in one!

    I actually have some reason to believe I may be able to come close.
  • . . .some of you may think my wife and I went slumming, and from a dealership standpoint, that MAY be true.

    But shucks and darn if we didn't go to a Jeep dealer and a Chrysler dealer and have a good, long look and test drive of a Chrysler 300 and a Jeep SRT-8. If we "bought" both of these cars the total full list MSRP would be about $90,000. The Jeep was $46K and the Chrysler was $44K.

    These cars had almost all the "gadgets" I've come to know and demand in my $53,286 Audi A6 -- and both of them had tremendous POWER and even though I WANTED them to be unrefined -- damn near "rough hewn," well, gulp, frankly both of these cars seemed like they would not require THAT much adjustment, if any, from a driving perspective.

    The handling -- or perhaps better said -- the crispness I expect from an Audi was close in the Chrylser and easily there in the Jeep.

    Moreover, more than just a huge engine on a skateboard, the handling of the Jeep was on-par with many of the Euro cars I have either owned or test driven -- no, no, it was EASILY on par.

    The Chrysler seemed way nicer than the last SRX Cadillac I rented and far less floaty than a RWD standard supsension STS -- and way more powerful, by far.

    The nav system wasn't as nice as my Audis, cause you couldn't talk to it. But you could use the phone via voice command pretty much as I'm used to in the Audi.

    Both these vehicles had DVD units in the rear.

    =======

    It makes we want to ask this board, this well opinioned and erudite board: what excludes the Chrysler from this forum (other than our agreed upon car brands and number of cars that can be discussed.)

    There are clues to these cars being "from around here" rather than from "over there." But there are few traits lacking.

    What makes one a member and one not?
  • I, in no way, think this board will include any SUV, no matter how far up the pole it goes, or how high the sticker climbs.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    It makes we want to ask this board, this well opinioned and erudite board: what excludes the Chrysler from this forum (other than our agreed upon car brands and number of cars that can be discussed.)

    Come on Mark, we've heard this all before. The 300 and GC are nice cars. This however, is the luxury performance sedans board, and the 300 is not a luxury car, just like the Avalon, Azera, 500, Lucerne, and the rest of that segment. Luxury is more than horsepower, a NAV system and leather seats. If that was enough to qualify, nearly every car on the market would be considered a luxury car.

    There's no law that says a LPS can't be domestic. The STS qualifies, as will the Lincoln MKS. Thats it. Chrysler aint included.

    One thing is for sure, there's definitely nothing luxurious about your average Chrysler dealer.
  • Like I said, it did not escape me that we had perhaps gone slumming. But what makes the STS a player vs the 300C? The term that seems to be used is entry level.

    Forget the Chrysler for a moment. At what point of feature or creature comfort or horsepower or whatever, does the car move from entry level to full on member.

    It seems to me, there are certainly subtle differences -- the Audi has bi-xenon articulating headlights. It appears the Chrysler has xenon low beams that do not articulate.

    The M's from Infiniti had low beam xenons last year (they may still have for all I know.)

    My point is, the car seemed smooth, responsive, quite and the suspension seemed capable.

    I am just wondering what qualifies?

    For the money, there is no way I would opt for the STS over the 300 and the dealers of both vehicles in my experience are way below any Euro car dealer I have ever visited.

    Of course both the Infiniti and Lexus dealers are in the same auto mall as the Chrysler and Jeep dealers and it simply seems that in such an environment the dealer personnel aren't much different from each other.

    My Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Volkswagen and Volvo dealership are that "cut above" that higher level of class that you know the moment you walk in the showroom. The Chrysler, Jeep, Infiniti and Lexus dealers (in our big town) all suffer from that 1960's Russian TV look and the people that work there have just discovered hair-mousse.

    If that is what I have to choose from, frankly, I'll keep my $10,000 and at least consider the Chrysler (all other things being at least semi-equal.)

    The question is, is it price? is it feature function? is it 0-60 time, is it residual? What attribute set defines this segment?

    Some folks only tolerate my pick as long as it is the AWD version -- the FWD version is booed, i.e.

    Others swear by RWD and a V8 saying all others are "posers."

    Is it "real wood trim" vs plastic trim? Some folks swear the M's from Infiniti have the worst wood trim ever, so fake looking?!?

    The upper most M has aluminum.

    The Cadillac STS is a nice car, I would gladly have one. But until one equips it with the luxury performance package and accessories at some $13,000, the STS is a lackluster and unconvincing (to me) entrant into the LPS class. Yet, equip one with the V8 and the magnaride package and the sport bits and the car is certainly desirable.

    And $16,000 more than a very similar 300C.

    This question is more about figuring out how to define the subtleties than it is about disagreeing with you.

    The Americans, as evidenced by the products I mentioned, have come a long way in a short time.

    How about this: the American car, personified by the Chrysler 300 has come further, faster than the [apparently] next level up cars (LPS's) -- the gap has closed significantly if not entirely (not counting the blast from the past visit to a "modern" Chrysler dealership.)

    Edumacate me.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    The question is, is it price? is it feature function? is it 0-60 time, is it residual? What attribute set defines this segment?

    Is it "real wood trim" vs plastic trim? Some folks swear the M's from Infiniti have the worst wood trim ever, so fake looking?!?


    Price, yes. In general, the "entry-lux" level is around $30K-40K, and "luxury" starts above the $40K level. The key word there is "starts". The 300 in its V6 versions can be had for well below that, and thats one of the reasons it is not a luxury car.

    Features and gadgets are only a part of it. The Germans seem to think that technology = luxury, but thats not really true. Take the "old school" Bentleys like the Arnage, for example. Very little in terms of state-of-the-art gadgetry, but unquestionably a luxury car.

    0-60 doesn't really have anything to do with it, although if a luxury car is significantly slower than its competitors, it will suffer, at least in this market. Same for residuals. Some brands are great (BMW, Lexus) some brands tank (Jaguar, Cadillac). Its up to the buyer as to whether or not thats an issue.

    I would say that real wood trim is a must, yes. There's just nothing luxurious about "wood looking" or "aluminum looking" plastic, when that kind of trim is available in a Chevy Aveo. The quality of the M's wood is a subjective thing, but it IS real. A LPS with fake trim is unacceptable.
  • tayl0rdtayl0rd Posts: 1,938
    Mark, the main reason those cars can't be included is their lack of snoot appeal. On average, LPS owners tend to be a bit "high sadiddy" and if they can't turn their noses up to 85% of the other cars on the road, it just won't do. Dollar for dollar, is a BMW 525i better than a 300C SRT8 in any way whatsoever? I would argue NO. Is an Acura MDX any better than a Grand Cherokee SRT8? Hell no!

    The badge makes all the difference. I would argue that a 300C is as good as any LPS car. I would argue that a Grand Cherokee SRT8 can hold its own against (and beats) any other upper end SUV on the market.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Your and others' opinions notwithstanding, the luxury performance sedans class is defined by the marketplace, i.e., price, amenities, etc. The 300 in any flavor doesn't fit here, although it may be an entry-level performance sedan. The MDX and the GC of any flavor do not fit because they are missing a rather important criterion of the topic, sedan.

    All of you, please feel free to create any comparo that suits you, but this discussion is focused on the LPS vehicles defined at the top of the page. There may be others that fit the category, but, unless I've missed something, the ones mentioned recently really don't.
  • I appreciate what you've said regarding "price" and "amenities." I also know that this forum is about specific cars and there is a quantitative limit to the discussion.

    What (or where do we go to find the answer) are the specific amenities (since price appears to be "OVER $45,000 BASE"?) I am just wondering why we "accept" the 5 series, the A6, the Lexus G's, etc? Or, why we accept the STS but wouldn't accept the 300.

    The STS -- to keep in the American car realm for a moment -- is a fine car. But a base STS, nice as it may be, is barely luxurious, hardly much to write home about with respect to performance -- uh, but it IS a sedan. A $45K STS, if you can find one compared to a $45K 300C would be like bringing a knife to a gun fight. Were I being gifted either car, in this case, I would take the 300 -- 'cause the STS lacks both lux and performance at that price point.

    NOW, therefore, however, notwithstanding: a high zooted up STS does seem like more car than the 300. But, heck the price goes north of $60K.

    Is there some DNA test that says "none of your ilk shall pass" or "because you are a fill-in-the-blank, you will be given the secret handshake?"

    Would it be possible for a current LPS car to "fall from grace?" What would make it fall.

    I spent the last four days driving a very nice 530xi station wagon (the loaner while my wife's car is in for a recall of her telemetrics). The MSRP in the glove compartment says it is $58K. The car has "premium pack" on it, is silver with a black leather interior.

    The car is a strippie -- I would hardly call it LPS>
  • Lexusguy always manages to draw attention to Japanese cars, no matter what the topic. Nothing wrong with that extreme degree of Japan-auto-love, but it is what it is -- not so much an argument as a fixed position. Here emphasis is switched from Lexus to the Infiniti M as defining luxury because it has real wood and lots of gadgets. That is what Infiniti successfully packaged and shipped specifically for American buyers like lexusguy, among whom there are many happy M owners.

    Do German carmakers confuse engineering with luxury? Depends...for a while they ignored American preference for comfy seats and gadgets in favor of state-of-the-art drivetrains and chassis to produce that unmatchable 3-series type of handling. Then they began to add interior touches. Now, in many comparos of interiors, Audi is proclaimed the world champ.

    Mark now demands a more specific definition or, perhaps, re-definition of LPS. I guess that would make it his burden to come up with one ... not enough to ask on what basis a car hasn't been included under the LPS umbrella.

    These stereotyping generalizations can only go so far in capturing the reality of how a diverse universe of car buyers are assessing and buying cars.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,690
    The problem is, you are injecting personal preference into what defines an LPS sedan. The STS may be a joke to you, but its an expensive joke, nonetheless. And people buy them, so its obviously not a universal fact of any sort.

    If, for instance, an exception was made for the 300 based on your personal preference, what prevents someone from insisting on including an Accord because they feel it is just as good as the 300? Ok, maybe a slight exageration (maybe not), but insert any car into that question. Maybe the Buick Lucerne or Toyota Avalon.

    Lines have to be drawn and they must be obeyed in order to have a reasonable discussion.

    We had a very similar discussion not too long ago in the entry-level LPS sedans thread.

    '13 Stang GT; '15 Fit; '98 Volvo S70; '14 Town&Country

  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    You certainly have every right to choose to spend your money on a big OHV lump, rather than refinement, materials, and dealer experience. If you think that equals value, by all means buy your Chrysler or Jeep. Don't characterise ALL luxury buyers as badge snobs who only care about being "better" than their neighbors, though. If horsepower is all you care about, why not buy a Shelby Mustang? There's no cheaper way to get 500 horsepower, and you can laugh at all those Porsche driving badge snobs...at least until there's a curve in the road.
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