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Luxury Performance Sedans

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  • docnukemdocnukem Posts: 485
    I heard a new Q is coming in 2008...just a rumor, though. The spread between invoice and MSRP is quite a bit higher in the GS than the M, so the M has less wiggle room...not that Lexus wants to have deep discounts on a vehicle.
  • drtraveldrtravel Posts: 395
    Why so interesting? The M is a much better car than the GS.

    Brand loyalty plays a big part in the sales of any category of luxury goods. The quality of the product, while important, is not as important as perceived luxury and/or status to many buyers. Many luxury products have earned a solid reputation as the best when in reality, some may no longer live up to their reputation. The Lexus has a much higher brand value than Infiniti so the fact that Infiniti has taken it to them is significant, especially in such a short period of time.

    If Infiniti outsold the established category leaders in the USA, (BMW & MB) that would be quite an accomplishment. Not only would they have to provide a superior car (which some think they already have) but they would also have to overcome the strong brand loyalty that BMW & MB possess. This last item is no small feat.

    Imagine that Casio produced a luxury timepiece and priced it just below the comparable Rolex. Most would be stunned if Casio outsold Rolex. OK I know my example is far-fetched but the principles are the same.
  • drtraveldrtravel Posts: 395
    It's the new G that's coming this fall. We might never see another Q, just when Infiniti is getting its act together.

    According to the service manager at my local dealer (a reliable source???) Infiniti is sending over both a new G35 and Q45 in the next twelve months. They really need to hit a home run with the Q. Their "flagship sedan" has been killed by the competition ever since it's introduction in the early 90's. If you are a serious player in the luxury sedan market, you have to have a strong flagship - just look at the battle between the German automakers at that level.

    Will Ghosn complete the trifecta? Both the G and M have made Infiniti a player in their respective luxury levels. Can he pull one more out of the hat. If so, he just might replace Bangle!!
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Another interesting thing is that if you look on eBay, there are loads of barely used RLs and GS300s and 430s at huge discounts. In stark contrast to that, there are maybe 2 or 3 of the new Ms on eBay at any one time, and they dont have the same heavy discounts.

    I dont think Acura will be able to beat Audi in sales again, at least not until they come out with the lower-tech, low price version of the car. The only real success they had was when Infiniti and Lexus were non-competitors in 2005. The RL will never enjoy the class leading sales that the TL does.

    If the next Q was going to be a '07 model, wouldnt there be at least some info on the car by now? Wouldn't it have been at the NYAS along with the next G? I haven't seen anything on the new Q, no specs, no CG guesstimates, nothing. That doesnt sound like a car that is only a few months away.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Don't worry BMW fans. The 5-series has still outsold the E by 40% YTD. Will likey return to #1 next month.

    If you do it will be short lived. When that facelifted E lands in July it will be all over for the 5-Series for the year, I'm predicting. I have a harmless bet with Dewey about this, you want in..lol???

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I forget who coined the phrase but the "curse of the GS" seems to have started for Lexus already. I'm kinda surprised to see it dropping at a good rate already.

    M
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    If you do it will be short lived. When that facelifted E lands in July it will be all over for the 5-Series for the year, I'm predicting. I have a harmless bet with Dewey about this, you want in..lol??

    I'll take a piece of that action. :)

    I may be personalizing too much, but when I consider what my next sedan might be, the BMW 5-series is still the "driver's choice". A facelift of the E-class won't help win me over. A couple of AMG engineers taking a long enough break from their quest to produce a 1,000+ horsepower E77 to focus on a sportier chassis, better steering and, most of all, short throw 6-speed for an E500 model would do the trick. But I'm not turning red holding my breath.

    There appears to be a sea of choices for someone that wants a "nice" driving, powerful luxury sedan like an A6, M35/45, E350/500, RL, GS, Jaguar, etc. But if you are inclined to go for a 550i 6-speed like I would be, there are NO other choices. I'd take a 530i 6-speed sport long before I'd take anybody else's V8.

    So, what's the wager? ;)
  • erickplerickpl Posts: 2,735
    My wife and I looked at the GS. Just something about it didn't feel right to us. It is a great car, but just not what she was wanting. We're seeing them everywhere, and she didn't want a car that everybody else had. Thank goodness she didn't go with the RX330 or 400h.

    -Paul
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I can't see anyone in his right mind paying a premium for a dog like the GS when so many better choices are out there.

    The GS has has very little interior room, limited head room, uncomfortable seats, very little trunk space, a ridiculously placed open-close panel containing necessary controls, fussy brakes, turn it with one pinky steering, cannot perform with its peers as demonstrated in comparo after comparo, and given all that, sells at a ridiculous premium.

    The name Lexus can take a vehicle just so far.
    It's about time Lexus humanely puts this vehicle to sleep.
  • erickplerickpl Posts: 2,735
    [QUOTE]
    I can't see anyone in his right mind paying a premium for a dog like the GS when so many better choices are out there.
    The GS has has very little interior room, uncomfortable seats, very little trunk space, a ridiculously placed open-close panel containing necessary controls, cannot perform with its peers and sells at a ridiculous premium.
    [/QUOTE]

    Perhaps that is what my wife didn't like about it. :)

    -Paul
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,269
    I drove the GS 300 and the 430 and I really felt uncomfortable-I was trying to force myself to like something I couldn't. I got a great lease offer on the 430-but I couldn't go through with it.

    After driving the 545, the choice became rather easy.
    I got a better leasing deal on the BMW than I got on the already good offer on the GS 430.
    No compromises with the BMW. Everything just right.
    Still happy after 9 months.
  • jrock65jrock65 Posts: 1,371
    "according to WSJ, the average transaction price for an M is higher than GS, even though GS has the higher MSRP."

    mariner,

    Do you have a link to this? What were the respective prices for each?
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Will it? The V8 is now stronger, but the E500 wasn't exactly slow. As for the facelift, to me it looks nearly identical to last year, both inside and out. I dont think changes only the most diehard Benz fanatic will notice are enough for it to suddenly kill the 5 in sales.
  • turnbowmturnbowm Posts: 76
    "The GS has has very little interior room, limited head room, uncomfortable seats, very little trunk space, a ridiculously placed open-close panel containing necessary controls, fussy brakes, turn it with one pinky steering, cannot perform with its peers as demonstrated in comparo after comparo, and given all that, sells at a ridiculous premium."

    Couldn't agree more! Test drove a new GS300 on two different occasions, as did the wife, and we both found it to be a MAJOR disappointment. The car did not feel solid and handling was sloppy. The wife actually preferred her ES300 over the GS300, which saved me a lot of coin!
  • mariner7mariner7 Posts: 509
    They really need to hit a home run with the Q.

    It's going to be a great challenge for Infiniti. They have not proved they can build a profitable full size luxury car yet. I read Ghosn likes to build many models off the same platform to increase profitability. I'd imagine they must have a new larger platform for Q, and what other Infiniti models can share that platform. That's why I'm still skeptical about new Q.
  • msilver1msilver1 Posts: 2
    HELLO,

    I AM NEW TO THIS POST AND I AM TRYING TO DECIDE ON A NEW CAR. I HAD TO SELL MY LEXUS SC430 BECUSE OF FAMILY REASONS(BUMMER). I HAVE LOOKED AT THE BMW 545I AND I LIKED THE POWER, BUT IT FELT STIFF AND NOT COMFORTABLE. I REALLY LIKE LEXUS, BUT THE GS300 HAS NO GUTS AND THE GS430 IS OUT OF MY PRICE RANGE. I DROVE THE INFINITI M, BUT I ALWAYS GO BACK TO LEXUS. I CAN BUY A 2006 GS430 WITH 9K MILES FOR 47K- WHAT DO YOU THINK???

    THANSK
  • 2001gs4302001gs430 Posts: 767
    What the heck is this, GS bashing party? I can't speak for all the GS buyers, but these are the reasons why I bought my last generation GS:
    1- I wanted Lexus RELIABILITY and luxury.
    2- I was not ready for an LS ( My wife called it Gram pa's car)
    3- The IS is too sporty.
    4- The ES is too much like a Camry and does not feel as solid as the GS or LS.
    5- BMW 5's are more expensive to insure and own out of warranty. The current model is ugly from the side (the rear end looks sliced).
    6- Never even looked at Benz due to publicity around reliability issues.
    7- Never looked at Audi since I associate them with VW and related reliability issues
    8- Infiniti is not as refined as Lexus, and seems to cut corners in few areas.

    I am not crazy about the new GS design but I would take a GS450h model any day.
  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,049
    You mentioned the 530i 6-speed sport and I assume you meant the 6 speed manual.

    However, I actually had the "good fortune?" to take a long test drive in a 2006 530xi (unfortunately it had the automatic) and then afterwards get into my own 2005 A6 (which does have the 18" wheels, but no sport suspension, but the 530xi sport doesn't either.)

    The driver's car between THESE particular two versions?

    They were both similar in many respects. The BMW did have 17" wheels and all season tires. My A6 has 18" wheels and all season tires. They both have 6spd automatics, they both have 255HP engines, they both. . .well you know the story, they compete (especially in Europe) fiercely. The A6 -- TODAY may be outselling the 530 in Europe and next month the tables may be turned (but the differences are much narrower.)

    Trying to be objective (or at least keep my subjectivity as capped as possible), both cars are great to pilot. The A6 seems a bit larger (I think it really is) and this creates two impressions. One is more favorable to the performance quotient, one more favorable to the luxury checklist. If you want a bigger passenger compartment and more rear seat room, the Audi obliges more than the Bimmer.

    Performance (two components, urge and nimbleness) differences between the two were real but minor. The BMW with 100 miles on the clock was not as "peppy" and the engine at full cry sounded like a six cylinder (a strong sound, but sort of like a home theater with a B+ sub-woofer); the Audi, with 15,000 miles on it was stronger throughout (but this could be the advantage of the miles showing up) -- the Audi's engine sounds, however, were second in sweetness only to the 4.2 V8 from the same company.

    Note: a BMW V8, which I last drove in 2002 in a 7 series, doesn't resonate (no pun intended) in my "memory" as sounding this smooth and authoritative.

    In the Audi V6, the sub-woofer was present and accounted for.

    The other performance component -- "handling" -- was also close, but the BMW seems to inspire more confidence, but the 17" no season tires were working hard to kill that confidence. The Audi isn't as soft (riding) as the BMW, but it's nose heaviness doesn't do it any favors.

    Subsequently, but not back to back, I drove an A6 with the sport suspension and higher performance tires and although the ride harshness did increase slightly, the front end heavy wallowing was largely tamed.

    The Audi interior was more inviting to the eye and the butt, too -- but like 98% of all BMW's on the road these days, the Silver BMW 5 series had a Black leather interior with "black gloss wood" adorning its dash (somebody slash my wrists, please, I get so depressed, so Goth-like in a BMW with its "starker" interior when it is done in Black on Black.)

    Anyway, here is my challenge -- ONLY if you are going down the automatic transmission path: test drive an A6 SLine and a BMW 530xi back to back (and hopefully the 530 will be equipped with the optional 18" wheels and tires.)

    If you are looking for a driver's choice, you may find either car "more desirable" than some of the other cars competing for your bucks.

    Don't count the Audi A6 Sline out as a "driver's car" that is. If, however, you want the row your own car, get the BMW -- it is the epitome of L+P+S -- nothing else, at this time, even comes close. If you are thinking of the BMW with the auto, you "owe" yourself a long drive and look see at the "other, less popular (over here) German car."

    At this point, the 530xi if it is offered next year with both the stick shift AND the sport suspension with 18 or larger wheels and tires (factory spec). . .well, it would be my hands down favorite. Moreover, if the management ever decides to offer the 530xi with the twin turbo i6 @ 300HP AND the stick AND the sport package -- well, well, well, nothing (under $60,000) could even come close.

    But, that's just my opinion, I could be wrong (often am), just never uncertain. :shades:
  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,049
    Some folks put Performance, Luxury, Control, Safety, "driver's car qualities," i.e. somewhat (even if it is a little bit) ahead of reliability.

    Some folks, some Car & Driver type editors (and other car maven magazines, too) dis the GS because it seems to place "the driving experience" slightly behind some other qualities.

    This does NOT make you wrong or them less right. You put reliability and luxury as your #1. I "assume" those who put performance (in some way, fashion, manner or regard) in "their" number 1 -- apparently -- don't go for the GS.

    I gather, by reading, the GS is "less involving" and "more isolating" [some call that luxury] than some others in the pack.

    Drive it like YOU live. :surprise:
  • 2001gs4302001gs430 Posts: 767
    Mark, yes reliability has to be at the top of my list. As you can see, I am still driving my fully paid for 2001 GS. I could probably drive this cars for another 2-3 trouble free years.
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