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Luxury Performance Sedans



  • jrock65jrock65 Posts: 1,371
    275hp Camry? Is the Camry getting the 3.5 V6 as well?
  • NO, not yet -- so when we were at the Chrysler dealer which happens to be in a huge auto mall, we wandered over to Infiniti and took a nice long test of a 2005 Infiniti G35x (we were impressed).


    I even got a price on an M35 (no lease figures, just MSRP -- but that is on the web site). The G35 was $39,410 +$250 for a rear deck spoiler. The selling price was $36,022+the rear spoiler -- and w no down, the lease was $555 a month (for 36 months as I recall.)


    Considering the price asked by some European makers (speaking of the lease price), the Japanese seem to be attractively priced.


    Problem is my wife is having "perception" difficulties with the Japanese car. She has had only German cars, she is "suspicious" of their quality (believe it or not) and how they are perceived by the population in general.


    I tried to assure her that the reliability reputation of the Japanese cars was higher than any German car. But she keeps thinking the Japanese cars, somehow, are not as solid as the German and other European brands. I guess her pecking order would be German, Japanese, American.


    But, I mentioned that the Acrua dealer for the first time actually has an RL sitting outside "as if it is the demo!"


    We will be testing it soon.


    The excuse up until now has been that all the cars have been presold; the current excuse it that the "extra" cars are for the Cincinnati Auto Show which is Feb 17 - 20th and they are keeping them "perfect" for the show.


    We need to order at least one car no later than April (we need to dump one of our Audis by July, and with a 14 week lead time, well you figure it out.)


    We have a soft order already for a new 05.5 Audi A4 -- but after driving the G35x, my wife for the frist time in her life is actually thinking she might accept an automatic.


    I was very pleased with the Inifiniti and the dealership -- it reminds me of a fine hotel, when you go into the dealership they have a greeter who offers you coffe, tea, soft drinks or bottled water; the interior is soft and subdued but still well lit (but not harshly lit).


    Night and day difference between the premium cars and the more pedestrian cars at the dealership level. The five star Chrysler dealer was much more downscale -- good analogy: the premium car dealerships are like a fine leather sofa, whereas the non-premium dealerships are like a vinyl sofa. There is a certain something that the Premo guys have figured out.


    Premo guy's sales office: modern and new wooden desk with high back leather desk chair and matching guest chairs. Chrysler dealer, metal desk, metal and vinyl chair, similar guest chairs.


    Now, this does not somehow mean that the expensive look at the premo car dealership is "better" or that the downscale look is inferior at the other dealership.


    The entire "tone" of the relationship appears to be set by the look of the dealership is my point. Of course we are paying for the glitzy look at the Infiniti dealership.


    I guess I could get past the metal desks if the sales people at the Chrysler dealer didn't seem so "slimy." "Are you folks in the market to buy TODAY?"


    The Inifiniti dealer talked about the weather, the car, music, his family, our family and seemed to be much more interested in building rapport. Indeed we had to ask about the car's price -- he never once made any overture that would be perceived as "attempting to close the deal NOW!"


    So refreshing, reminds me of the Audi dealer and the BMW dealer and Mercedes dealer who one week after our test drives sent thank you cards, handwritten, to boot.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Thank you cards arent uncommon. I've gotten ones from the above three that you mentioned, plus Lexus, Acura, Infiniti, and Volvo.


    I know your wife likes the Audi, but I would strongly suggest the '05 G35x. I've had at least a half hour behind the wheel of that car, and its magnificent. Lexus quiet, wonderful exhaust note, near V8 power, and best of all, you'd never know its AWD. My salesman was quite comfortable with me taking a few corners way too hard and letting the tail slide out. Probably because its just as easy to reign it back in. The car never felt like it was out of control.
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    "Problem is my wife is having "perception" difficulties with the Japanese car. She has had only German cars, she is "suspicious" of their quality (believe it or not) and how they are perceived by the population in general."


    I know I had perception problems with the Japanese products following WWII and rightly so. but I believe it was during the 70's the Japanese imports (Most of their products) began to take on a different persona and look at them today.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Just look at Volkswagen vs. Toyota, which is essentially worlds worst vs. worlds best. Times have changed.
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    "Just look at Volkswagen vs. Toyota, which is essentially worlds worst vs. worlds best. Times have changed."


    Interesting things are happening though, for example:

    "Kodak moves ahead of Japanese giants in US digital-camera market"



    Does anyone have numbers on American vs Imports purchase trends in the USA?
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    VW might have the worst reliability but they have a way better image than boring Toyota does with younger buyers. Toyota had to create a whole new brand just to get the younger buyers that VW gets automatically. VW's designs and styling in general make Toyotas look like kitchen appliances, reliability and all. This new Avalon is about the ugliest car I've seen in years, or since the last one was first shown.


    The new Jetta looks to be a disappointment though, it looks way too much like a Corolla in overall shape and in the rear. This new Passat however is going to put the Camry and Accord on the trailer just like the current model did in the comparos back when it was introduced, and with a 280hp VR6 (and true luxury car features) it should do the same with the Avalon and Maxima too. Lord knows it kills these two ugly ducks in design.


  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    "Kodak moves ahead of Japanese giants in US digital-camera market"


    Moves ahead in what? Sales? Last time I checked, Canon, Nikon, Olympus, and Fuji own the dSLR pro market. NOBODY has a camera like Canon's 16.7MPer.


    merc, I will admit, the Passat is sleek looking. I still wouldnt buy one though.
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 2,487
    G35X Lexus quiet? Gotta differ on that point. While I agree the engine/exhaust note is lovely, I ended up buying an '05 Acura TL because, among several reasons, it had a significantly quieter and smoother ride. The G has quite a bit of wind noise (as agreed upon by a coworker who bought an '04 G35x and was surprised by the wind noise at speed) and engine/road noise. Great handler, wonderful power and the '05 interior upgrades are nice (and needed!). Really enjoyed the hour long test drive, ended up a tough decision. Wouldn't hesitate to recommend the G35 to anyone (just test drive first, of course!).


    Evil wife drives a Lexus. Although the G is much louder, I'd buy the G over the Lexus in a heartbeat...

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

  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I'm reading the new issue of Autoweek and they have an Autofile section on the RL. It is amazing that people are cross shopping the RL with the S430 4Matic, 745i, and A8L. Only to say that the RL cost 25K less and give you most of what those cars give you??? WhAt? The RL is slower than all of them and doesn't even begin to offer the space in those cars. What am I missing here? Whats worse it that Autoweek mostly agrees with most off-base assesment. No mention of the mid-level Inifniti, MB, BMW or Lexus models that all appear to beat the RL in one way or another, either price/performance or at least on performance. Forget the German cars for a moment, the M35 smokes the RL. Do people really think a car with passenger seat adjustments of a 20K car is the level of a 7-Series, S-Class or A8 because it has standard awd and 300hp underperforming horses, with "still bland" styling?


  • The average shopper (especially, a Honda value shopper) doesn't look at all of those criteria..


    Here is what they see:


    Acura lineup





    Lexus lineup





    BMW lineup





    Infiniti lineup





    Mercedes lineup





    That is it.. They see Acura as the value and price leader in every category..


    And for 99.9% of buyers (even S-class and LS buyers), 300 HP sounds like more than they will ever need.. The horsepower wars mean a lot more to people in the sportier mid-size categories...




    Moderator - Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Does Autoweek have acceleration times? Last time I looked, 0-60 for the RL was 6.5, S430 was 6.9.
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    "I'm reading the new issue of Autoweek and they have an Autofile section on the RL...etc..etc."


    As a side gift to my son at Christmas I have been ordering him a subscription to AUTO WEEK for the last several years and this past Christmas I decided to get one for myself and low and behold in the first issue I received is the article on my RL. I thought it was great to be compared to an S430 and a 745i for a change....I love it! ;-)


    MERC...relax...what you might be missing is a sense of humor!
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    Good Post!
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I have to agree with Merc on this one. The RL simply does not compete in that class. Thats like saying, well the Pontiac G6 convertible has a folding top like the SL500, and it costs a hell of a lot less, so we think the G6 is the winner. I suppose the Ford 500 should beat the A8L as well, after all it IS full sized (something the RL cant even claim) and offers "most" of the features and AWD as well.
  • jtt1jtt1 Posts: 7
    This discussion illustrates the point that there is less difference today between cars at different price points than there used to be. A $25,000 Accord is in many ways comparable to a $50,000 RL. There are certainly differences but they are much less than they used to be and some people (like me) will cross shop to see if the $50K is worth it.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Not really. Was there more of a difference between C, E, and S, or 3, 5, and 7 ten years ago? No. How about the previous gen RL? Is it more different than an Accord than the new one? No. I'd say there's more of a difference today than there used to be. What Autoweek conspicuously failed to mention is that the RL is frankly a bad value in its own class. Acura screwed up and overpriced it by about 8 grand.
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,661
    that "made in japan" was a joke, especially with little transistor radios...but, in the late 70s, I started to admire the 4-Door Accord that sat on dealer's lots, as the right sized vehicle with good mpg numbers...when I went to Detroit in 1980, and saw up close what the Accord was doing to the junk (yes, junk) that the Big 3 were putting out, I realized that the Japanese spent years refining their products while we were letting ours deteriorate severely...if it wasn't for Japanese quality constantly improving, we would not have the good American cars that are now worth buying...I now own 2 new American cars (is Dodge still considered American, owned by DC?)...but for over almost a decade and a half, I would not touch an American product that was free, only bought Hondas and was always happy...I willingly returned to American cars when the cars were worth owning...if they were ever to slip again I would desert them in a heartbeat, as I am loyal to quality first, American second...I would NEVER buy American just to save my neighbor's job if my neighbor can't make a product that is worth owning...
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    Wow...should have had you with me to negotiate the RL deal.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Good post Marsha!
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