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Lexus LS 460/LS 460L Styling Impressions

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Comments

  • nexuslexusnexuslexus Posts: 147
    Diesels have a significant hurdle to overcome in the US market. For one, pollution standards in California and other states require low particulate emissions, which many diesels don't meet. Further, the American public still associates diesels with dirty, smoke producing trucks, not with luxury cars.
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    IMO, I do not really think any of us know enough yet, based on the reviews so far, about the driving dynamics of the new LS. That is going to be an important aspect, especially in the HELM forum, where the COMPARISONS are permitted.

    I am NOT asking for a comparison, I am asking for a discussion of the driving dynamics of the LS460 based on the reviews we have so far. The fact that the car comes with an OFF button for trac/stability, has sport mode suspension, sport-mode option with real upgraded brakes, pads, suspension and wheels... Already there has been several reviews of this, the latest being MT.

    How about the torque delivery of the engine at 4100rpm (peak) ? Any ideas what the torque curve would look like ?
  • Who cares if the self-park comes with or without the car? If you don't want to use it, you never have to. It is the 'beauty of stand-alone options' like you said. The convenience of that particular luxury option, like some other luxury options, like laser cruise controls, etc. is that if you don't want to you it, you never need to. It is indeed a nonissue. UNLIKE iDrive--that pretty much is the default way to input things, although there are workarounds. I also would suggest that the press has nowhere near universally maligned the feature like iDrive was.

    As far as I'm concerned, it would be very strange to go out of one's way to avoid a standard feature like self-park. If you hate it, just don't use it. At the very least, you can try it once and then forget about it, or use it as a parlor trick.

    Now as for the rest of the vehicle, I think it's good that there is a discussion of the LS' performance capabilities--IMO, any aspect of the vehicle is fair game. However, I would suggest that for the vast majority of flagship luxury buyers, most of this discussion is indeed academic as they will rarely call upon performance capabilities. But, it is still nice to know that the latent abilities are there! In my view the picture is not very clear as of yet, but really the only way to be really sure is to drive the car for yourself. I expect that the new LS will improve upon the old, and will achieve a level of respectable competence. Whether it has the ability to challenge the German makes, I'm uncertain, but hopeful that it will hold its own. As for the 'grabby' brakes, I heard the same thing in early articles about the LS 430 and I didn't experience that issue.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I've targeted 08 as the year to get to replace my 05. And I don't need AWD or LWB or a little h after my 460. I do, however, want all the interior appointments, gadgets and luxury items I can get..... ;)
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    Re AWD, I guess you are not in the part of Nevada where you have to worry about snowstorms! Do performance options have any appeal to you at all?
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    I guess if you don't mind squandering money for things you don't like then everything is just fine. But that ain't me. I haved three cars with heated seats and never use them. Isn't this a waste of money? However I would have spent more money to avoid the heated seats. That's called "having you by the you-know-what."

    Bottom line is that car companies know how to extort money from us and at the same time lower their production costs. For instance, in order to get rear side air bags do you have to order the Comfort Package Plus package? Ridiculous. Same thing with the rear sun shade. That's all I want, not the friggin' package. I don't run a spa for my passengers. They don't need massages and custom multi climate zones are not necessary in the confines of several square feet.

    I am not in the camp who would likes to donate money to Lexus so they can be at the same price of the German cars. I'll take the bargain aspect thank you. I prefer to see a car offered for as little money as possible and add options as I like them, as easily as putting groceries in a shopping cart. This goes without saying for any car whether it's luxury or economy.

    This business of rooting for Lexus to raise their prices boggles my mind. Cost is one of their advantages. HELLO!!!
  • topspin628topspin628 Posts: 373
    I may be missing something but in looking at the numbers on the hybrid (and in reading the posts on the GS and RX hybrid boards) I was surprised at how small the improvement in mileage is. I drive an LS430 that's a large 8 cyl engine and is rated at 0-60 in 5.9 seconds. This engine gets me about 18 city and 26-28 highway. That's really amazing to me. The new BMW gas engines are getting very fast and also very efficient as well. I would think that the hybrid advantage that seems to be "only" about 5 miles per gallon is not enough to justify the higher prices. It seems that the new diseal from MB and BMW are more effieceint. I still might consider a hybrid as my next car because of social concerns and responsibility but after my initial research, I was a bit disappointed in the real world MPG. I know that Lexus is claiming V12 power at V8 mileage but I think on the current LS they already offer a gas version with V8 power at V6 mpg. Am I missing something as to the hybrid craze?
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    I think for the majority of buyers, the packaging / absence of a la carte options actually makes economic sense. Because it holds down production costs and hence pricing to the consumer. If there are 7 items in a package and most consumers find utility in 5 or 6 of them, I think the economics would favor packaging. But if someone wants only 1 or 2 of the items (which sounds like you) then it doesn't work well.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    I don't know what "real world" numbers you have looked at, but you have to consider the source and whether the test has been done fairly or not.

    The best way imho to test mpg would be to have car A follow car B closely around a mixed highway/city course, and then have car B follow car A around the same course, and measure average mpg. I don't know of any tests that have been done like that.

    But I have seen a couple of reputable sources with comparisons. Road & Track (May 2006) for instance puts the hybrid Camry at 42% better mpg than the Camry V6 SE; CR puts the hybrid at 48% better than the V6 and 42% better than the I4. (Both tests were in mixed highway/city driving.)
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    Great post Designman!

    Choice should be made by the buyer and not the manufacturer.
    Most restaurants I go to offer two menus: A la Carte and Fixed. I will boycott any restaruant that has only fixed menus. There is not a single chef in the world that knows my taste buds better than myself.
  • tagmantagman Malibu, CaliforniaPosts: 8,441
    I am not in the camp who would likes to donate money to Lexus so they can be at the same price of the German cars. I'll take the bargain aspect thank you. I prefer to see a car offered for as little money as possible and add options as I like them, as easily as putting groceries in a shopping cart. This goes without saying for any car whether it's luxury or economy.

    This business of rooting for Lexus to raise their prices boggles my mind. Cost is one of their advantages. HELLO!!!


    Well said.

    One of the things that gets to me, however, is the way some manufacturers (in this case I'll be objective enough to point a finger at one of my favorites, MB) price the options through the roof.

    By the time you are done adding even a moderate amount of options, the base price and the final equipped price are miles apart.

    TagMan
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    some manufacturers (in this case I'll be objective enough to point a finger at one of my favorites, MB) price the options through the roof.

    By the time you are done adding even a moderate amount of options, the base price and the final equipped price are miles apart.


    IMO the MB options are expensive in part because they are available a la carte.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    IMO the MB options are expensive in part because they are available a la carte

    That is assuming you want a whole slew of options la carte(in that case a package is a bargain). But if you dont then why should you be obligated to pay for what you dont want?

    This is why I like the way BMWs are priced. The only option I will buy from BMW is the sport package that does not cost BIG $$$. Like many others I do cherish my pocket book.
  • ideleidele Posts: 200
    One gets very worthwhile fuel efficiency. My GS450h is 42% more fuel efficient than a comparable Audi V8 I had a few years ago. This by itself is definitely not a reason to buy a performance hybrid. I regard fuel efficiency and the exceedingly low pollution as a bonus because the performance aspects of this Lexus hybrid are so superior. If you think hybrids are a "craze" don't buy one. The GS450h is in very short supply and surely the LS600h will also be. I want them sold to those that can appreciate their numerous virtues.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    The GS450h is in very short supply and surely the LS600h will also be. I want them sold to those that can appreciate their numerous virtues

    The GS450H is in short supply because it is not produced in large supply to begin with. The short supply of the hybrid GS has nothing to do whatsoever with hot demand.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    That is assuming you want a whole slew of options la carte(in that case a package is a bargain). But if you dont then why should you be obligated to pay for what you dont want?

    People in that position aren't "forced" to buy anything from Lexus. They can turn to the Germans, as you have.
  • Having packages are more economical even if you do not use the options. Most if not all luxury cars will have similar equiped options (one that most people want). If you decide to pick and choose, you will likely have to order your car. In that case, you will not have a bargaining edge when the car is not on the lot. In essence, you will be paying a premium (MSRP or higher).

    A good example is ordering a manual transmission on a vehicle that 99% of the time comes in automatic. Believe me, you will be paying a premium even if the manual transmission costs less than the automatic.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    People in that position aren't "forced" to buy anything from Lexus. They can turn to the Germans, as you have

    True. Cant argue with that. The option of choosing another auto maker is the best option of all.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    If you decide to pick and choose, you will likely have to order your car. In that case, you will not have a bargaining edge when the car is not on the lot. In essence, you will be paying a premium (MSRP or higher).

    In other words it becomes a question of paying for what you really dont want ( a package) and paying for what you really do want (a la carte).
  • nexuslexusnexuslexus Posts: 147
    About the manual- that is not really true in all cases. For example, the BMW X3 comes by far most often with an automatic trans, but it is a cost-option.
  • ideleidele Posts: 200
    Well I'm happy with the supply being greatly restricted. That certainly helps keep the residual value of my car high. Checking on AutoTrader cars with mileage at or near mine (2400 miles) are selling at list. So why should I care if Lexus is not meeting demand; your post is irrelevant. As far as I can tell, Lexus can't be making much profit on them; for example, check the current price of nickel used in the batteries. I think Lexus is correct in keeping the performance hybrids limited editions; even better, if they were severely limited editions. I'm looking forward to my LS600h and hoping only the cognoscenti get their hands on them.
  • deweydewey Posts: 5,243
    Well I'm happy with the supply being greatly restricted.

    You make the hybrid GS sound like a limited edition Ferarri.

    The reality is that the low volume sales of a hybrid GS has more in common with the low volume sales of a Honda Insight. Both cars are produced in low volumes not because of prestige but because of limited demand.
  • Agreed on not paying for options you don't want. However, my point was simply on the user flexibility of it--if you don't want a feature, don't use it. Park Assist is not iDrive. Lots of standard features on luxury cars these days are ones that only certain people use, and many are those that drivers don't use/don't know/forgot about with no problems.

    And supposedly the user customizability of options on the Mercedes is what adds cost. Overall, the packaging does cost extra money on an individual basis, but supposedly it is less expensive overall for the cost of manufacturing the car. Packaging may mean lower prices overall.

    And as for the GS450h, there is more exclusivity to it than the Honda Insight, by far. For instance, the Neiman Marcus versions of the GS 450h which sold out in a matter of hours upon release, similar to the Saks Fifth Avenue versions of the new S-class. The added expense of the GS 450h, a hefty premium indeed, plus its packaging of many features optional on other GS vehicles, makes it a niche vehicle.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    I agree on iDrive. It hijacks the buyer. If you don't like it you are forced to tolerate it if you must have a high-end BMW.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    My crystal ball says the LS 460 base price is $64,700.
  • how much do you think an ls460 l would cost(everything but the executive package)? hopefully less then 85k.
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    I think you and everyone else are going to be pleasantly surprised, that is, everyone but those who for some strange reason want to see these cars priced on par with MB.
  • If the MSRP is that, and I think that is a good guess, it already represents a hefty markup from the LS 430. Lexus is starting to price itself higher and higher.

    I'm somewhat surprised by their forecast for 30% LS 460 L sales, I think in the US it'd be much higher, but perhaps the price figures into that equation.
  • sysweisyswei Posts: 1,804
    I'm somewhat surprised by their forecast for 30% LS 460 L sales, I think in the US it'd be much higher

    Agreed, I think a majority of 7 sales in the US are LWB.
  • ideleidele Posts: 200
    Your comparison of demand for the Honda Insight with that for the GS hybrid doesn't make sense
    The Honda Insight is called a "hybrid" but it is not a true hybrid ("true" as defined by the UN; the Toyota /Lexus hybrids are the only ones with power by either engine or electric motor or by both ) and the Honda Insight is certainly not a performance hybrid. You could compare the Honda Insight to the Toyota Prius (a true hybrid but not a performance hybrid) Priuses generally have an 8 day average dealer supply the lowest of all mass produced cars and demand is high.The demand for Honda Insights is small because it's an inferior car and its supply matches the low demand. Demand for the GS hybrid is unknown; we just know it is in short supply.
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