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Luxury Performance Sedans

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  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Isuzu wasn't discussed at all. To be honest, I saw very few Isuzu's in Japan, other than commercial trucks. Aren't they a partner with Subaru/Fuji Industries? There were lots of Subarus in Japan, with more focus on high performance and less on LL Bean. They seem to have carved out a "Japanese Audi" niche with lots of cool wagons.

    Some sort of cooperation may have been happening when Isuzu and Subaru were both under the GM umbrella. They never shared any platforms or engines that I know of. The only thing Isuzu has left in the US market is a rebadge of the Colorado\Canyon.

    Its annoying that Subaru still refuses to bring most of their performance models to the US market. Our Legacy "Spec.B" is a very watered down version of what they have there, same thing with the WRX STi. The new Evo IX FQ360 is capable of chasing a 911 Turbo on a track, but we get none of the hot versions of that car as well.
  • reality2reality2 Posts: 303
    Yes, the solar sunroof (or solar cells located in the sunroof) is a great option that Audi has. I have it on my two Audis here in California and it makes a nice difference in the summer especially. I am not sure anyone else offers this option. I order it specifically when I get a new Audi because I like the "coolness" of the feature.
  • reality2reality2 Posts: 303
    Same in LA. Penske is openning a new Audi dealersip, a new Audi Forum is planned for West Los Angeles, and majority of Audi dealerships now have the new hanger look with more on the way including two mega-store Audi dealerships to be built in Pasadena and the San Fernando Valley similar to the one just openned in London with the airport termninal two-story look (includes Santa Monica). Look forward to all the toys coming.
  • drtraveldrtravel Posts: 395
    Acura RL - 987
    Audi A6 - 844
    BMW 5-Series - 4,398
    Infiniti M - 1,986
    Lexus GS - 1,997

    Don't know MB or Caddy
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Audi A6 - 844

    Ouch! What happened to Audi this last month? I thought they were done losing to the RL.
  • Audi A6 Year-to-date sales = 14,149 (sold 14,682 in 2005)
    Acura RL Year-to-date sales = 10,068 (down 33% from 2005)

    A6 appears to be done losing to the RL.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Don't know MB or Caddy

    E-Class - 4,895
    STS - (couldn't find this one yet)
    S-Type - 314

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Found it, the STS sold 1,573 for October 2006, a 10 percent drop from Oct 2005.

    Source

    A little off topic, but GM really does give a lot of information on their corporate site. I didn't know the Corvette sold as well as it does, they're on track to sell like 36K of them this year! Not sure what is going on with Saab, but their sales were up 98 percent(!) for Oct 06' compared to Oct 05'. It looks there are no Oldsmobiles anywhere in a America at this point, they're finally dead! The old-school Caddy DTS is still Cadillac's best selling model.

    M
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Not sure what is going on with Saab, but their sales were up 98 percent(!) for Oct 06' compared to Oct 05'.

    Must be that new 2.8L turbo V6 for the 9-3. I can't imagine that the facelift they gave to the geriatric 9-5 is fooling anybody, at least not the kind of people who buy Saabs. The 9-2X was a dud, and if the 9-7X had any initial success, the party must surely be over by now.
  • mariner7mariner7 Posts: 509
    The RL and Legend are identical worldwide, with the same SH-AWD and V6 drivetrain. Nissan has chosen to differentiate, and are winning, while Honda is offering the same car with similar slow results.

    Because of SH-AWD weight, RL is already sluggish with the big 3.5 engine. A smaller engine for Japan wouldn't do, plus Honda's engines tend to be low on torque. Lack of torque and excess weight is not good combination. Those are two of the problems RL has.

    What Audi does is offer FWD/AWD on all its cars. I think A6's in USA are all AWD, but can be FWD in other countries. Acura might consider doing the same thing.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    What Audi does is offer FWD/AWD on all its cars. I think A6's in USA are all AWD, but can be FWD in other countries. Acura might consider doing the same thing.

    Making FWD optional might save 200lbs or so and improve acceleration a bit, depending on the available grip. It also will make torque steer and massive understeer a big problem. I don't think the positives outweigh the negatives.
  • cstilescstiles Posts: 465
    From the dialogue with the Honda engineers, it's obvious that they are working on bigger engines, including a V8. They were very guarded, but there is a 3.7 litre V6 in the new MDX that will probably see service in other Acuras. I personally believe the next RL will have a V8.

    Like Lexusguy said, going FWD presents its compromises. On the positive side, in addition to less weight, it also allows you to lower your transaction costs. And maybe offer a little more interior spacing. But torque steer is a potential deal killer with LPS cars unless managed with limited slip and electronic controls. But the more you inject the latter controls, the less steering feel and positive road handling.

    Bottom line, there is no good alternative to RWD, other than perhaps AWD.

    .
  • Well we have the 2007 A6's and 5's -- and here they come with 255 horsepower. I believe making these two Germans the weaklings on the beach where everyone else can just kick sand in their faces.

    But wait -- BMW has a 300HP 3 liter 6 and it sure makes that 5 series sweeeeet. Oh wait, it is available only in a 3 series sedan and coupe.

    And what's up with Audi?

    You got your 4 your 6 and your 8 and even your Veee-ten (and in the A6 in the US anyway only the "top o' the line" 255 6 and on up is imported.) The "3.2" FSI engine would certainly benefit from a mild bi-turbo blowing ever so gently, wouldn't it?

    Man, that engine would easily crank out 300 horses and pry-bar bending torque meanwhile sipping fuel.

    Look what has been done with the 2.0TFSI -- what is it now, 265HP, up from 200. Hmmm, now let's see, hey -- thats more than a 30% improvement. If the same were done to the Audi V6, carry the 3, hmmmm, dang! 331 HP. They'd have to do what BMW has reportedly done to their "335", and that is tone down the power to 300 to not provide too much competition for the V8.

    Now, having said this and wondering if the issue with the Acura, which even with the "restating" of the HP is able to better 255HP -- what is all this brouhaha about?

    I drove the new 335 BMW -- holy mule muffins batman, it was like, er, driving an Audi S4 stick (and there was an extra $7,000 and change in the glove box.)

    Ping pong?

    Audi goes turbo, BMW eschews it. Audi eschews it -- at least in the V6 and POW, BMW adopts it like it is the magic ability to pump power out of thin air?

    Meanwhile the Japanese keep upping their power routinely.

    In 2004 the A6 2.7T was what 265HP or was it 280 or was that figure the torque from about 2 rpm to redline or some impossibly broad band?

    In 2005 for about 5 grand more, the new A6 was emasculated down to 255 HP and 240 something pound feet over a much narrower range (but with a 6 speed.) 2006 ditto. 2007 ditto.

    The 2005 BMW 530 was killed in the bragging rights dept with 225 but it was the 240 HP Lexus that couldn't get no respect.

    There is a horsepower war on -- and yes, the German 8's 10's and 12's are awesome. But most of the cars actually sold here are the 6's, by far.

    The Germans are on a light, lively and lean kick?

    Next thing you know the new Audi A6 will come out with 250HP while everything from Nissan will START at 275 or higher.

    OK, Mercedes has a bit more juice and 7 speeds to choose from -- but even there, until you go to the outrageous zone money wise, the power remains relatively tame.

    Now I do love my 255HP A6, but the occasional visit to the M35 for a test drive does make me wonder why for 3+ thousand dollars more (speaking of the A6) the Audi can't come up with a 6 cylinder engine with, hmm, 295 HP and quit dinkin' or as my friend says about his kid "piddle dinkin'" around?

    :confuse:
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Now I do love my 255HP A6, but the occasional visit to the M35 for a test drive does make me wonder why for 3+ thousand dollars more (speaking of the A6) the Audi can't come up with a 6 cylinder engine with, hmm, 295 HP and quit dinkin' or as my friend says about his kid "piddle dinkin'" around?

    None of this is really new. The Germans have always had big eights and small sixes, and fours that without forced induction would have horse-and-buggy levels of power. Japan has always had smaller eights than the Germans (expect for Audi), and bigger, more powerful sixes, and big naturally aspirated fours that have similar power to Germany's blown fours.

    When the Germans had 2.8L 200ish hp engines the Japanese had 3.0L 220ish hp engines. When Germany went to 3.0L and 220hp, Japan went to 3.5L and 260hp, then 280hp, and now 300hp. These boosts came within a few years, and the Germans just havent caught up yet. I'm sure that when the A6 and 5 series offer 300hp from six cylinder engines, the Japanese will be using 3.8s with 350hp.
  • SALES OF LUXURY CAR BRANDS IN U.S. (in order of total sales) through October

    Lexus Sales in US

    2005 = 242,060
    2006 = 258,480

    Change = +6.8%
    --------------------------------------

    BMW

    BMW brand sales were up 2.2 percent year-to-date, to 220,885 vehicles compared to 216,063 vehicles sold in the same period in 2005.

    -----------------------------------------

    Acura

    2005 = 177,107
    2006 = 164,967

    Change = down - 6.9%
    -------------------------

    Mercedes

    2005 = 174,593
    2006 = 197,599

    Change = +13%
    -------------------------

    Infiniti

    2005 = 113,182
    2006 = 97,652

    Change = down -13.7%
    -----------------------------------------------

    Audi Sales in US

    2005 = 66,315
    2006 = 69,010

    Change = +4.1%
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    I remember reading an article several years ago claiming that the 300K sales mark was "dangerous" for a luxury brand to cross and that Lexus would lose all of their exclusivity if they kept growing. Doesn't seem to be the case.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    That e word usually trips my circuit breakers. I don't see many cars being exclusive to begin with, especially most models from Lexus, BMW and Mercedes. I fail to see how selling 300K cars is dangerous and also how Lexus was ever exclusive.
  • drtraveldrtravel Posts: 395
    Do you have Caddy's sales figure for September?
  • Saab, Cadillac, Hummer, Buick and GMC all saw retail sales increases in September. Saab led the pack with retail sales up 45 percent, driven by 9-3 and 9-7X. Cadillac sales were up 22 percent retail, with strong showings by DTS, STS, SRX and the entire Escalade lineup.

    Cadillac Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles posted 3,818 sales in September, up 31 percent from last September.
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Saab led the pack with retail sales up 45 percent, driven by 9-3 and 9-7X.

    People are actually buying the 9-7X? I'm surprised at that. Its something like a year away from death, and its based on a last generation Trailblazer. GM's own GMT900 trucks are much better.
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