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Mainstream Large Sedans Comparison

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Comments

  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    ...FoMoCo was handing out financing to anyone that could walk
    also tried incidentally by Mitsubishi, damn near put them out of business - deja vu?
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    Ford, IMO, is missing a chance to do what it really needs to do - and that would NOT include renaming the 500 the Taurus, which to me means 'rental car'. Look at what GM did with Cadillac and the CTS/STS, both very capable RWD sedans that have done reasonably well. Meanwhile Ford had the same thing in the Lincoln LS that could compete in the category and offer a RWD alternative to the upscale buyer. What do they do instead? - discontinue the thing and rename it a "Zephyr" (a rebadged FWD Fusion), doesn't work, so now it is an MKZ but still a rebadged Fusion. They ought to reincarnate the LS, decontent it, and sell something different in this vehicle class - it worked for Chrysler. Keep the '500' name or come up with another one, but something other than Taurus, and they really might have something that could sell. How about a new Crown Vic, RWD, 3.5 V6, on a slightly stretched LS platform with an optional V8 that could possibly keep up with the 300C/Charger Hemis? And then they don't lose any of those sales to the police depts!
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    A rebadged LS might sell well (I was suprised the LS didn't until I saw the price) but it's no replacement for the CV/GM. Have you ever sat in one? Even stretched, it would be a tight fit.

    But, I still agree a reasonably priced version could do well.

    I'm surprised to see you state that, though. You are always knocking Detroit cars for being old-tech and that chassis would be around 8 yrs old now. Now it's a good idea to keep an old car around? What gives?
  • allmet33allmet33 Posts: 3,557
    Interesting thought on the revamped Crown Vic, Captain. I agree with you that Ford should not take the 500 and banish it to immediate thoughts of rental cars and other fleet type cars. LOL

    Honestly, with Mercedez and BMW using numerical identifiers on their cars...it makes it even harder for other companies to do so effectively. Mazda found a way, but Ford needs to go back to the normal type moniker. Leave the exotic sounding call letters (MKZ, LS, MKS) for it's luxo Lincoln line. It would seem that Ford is trying to be more than it really is.

    Chysler lucked out, they could have named the 300 anything they wanted and it still would have sold like crazy just because the darn thing looks so commanding in person and on the road.
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    Chysler lucked out, they could have named the 300 anything they wanted and it still would have sold like crazy just because the darn thing looks so commanding in person and on the road.

    There's a lot of heritage in the 300 name. It was always the risky, next-gen vehicle for Chrysler so I guess maybe it always "lucked out." I agree they could've called it just about anything and it would've sold.
  • allmet33allmet33 Posts: 3,557
    Well...with the success they're having with the 300, they're about to find out if lightning can strike twice when Dodge drops the Challenger.

    In the case of the 500...it looks so much better than any Taurus ever did. It would almost be like clipping the wings on a bird to re-dub it. Honestly, I say keep the 500 moniker, make the engine upgrade and push the heck out of it in the media.

    "More of what you're used to, just with a little more kick!"
  • jaymagicjaymagic Posts: 309
    I agree that the Avalon has a better residual value, I traded an Avalon and a Hyundai XG 350L in on the Azera. I didn't get killed on the XG, but clearly the Avalon held more value. But, it was not nearly significant enough to overcome the new price difference between the two for an Azera versus Avalon. We can talk about sticker price, but the reality is that Azera's similarly equipped, can be had for about $5K or more under an Avalon. In my case, I got my Azera for right at $26k ($30K sticker). A comparable Avalon XLS (with NO nav) was quote to me right at $31K.

    Of course, my XG never went out of warranty (100,000 mi) but other than a headlight at 35K, I never had any warranty claims. Avalon was superb too, but had a few more VERY minor warranty problems.
  • jaymagicjaymagic Posts: 309
    After posting my last message and looking at some others, it seems like the battle is down to the Azera versus the Avalon. While I got the Azera (had the Avalon), I would say that whichever you get is a reaaly great car for the money. In fact, for Azera and Avalon owners, they should be high fiving each other that they didn't get a Ford, a Chrysler, or a Buick. (not that they are bad cars as I doubt any car made today is a real loser. Our expectations are now just so high as to make what would have been a space age ride five years ago into a basic commuter car nowdays), The people who should be ticked off are the ones that bought the entry level Acura's and Lexus. That's what we should be comparing the Avalon's and Azera's to, instead of each other. They both kick butt as tremendous values when looked at in that comparison.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    sure, there is a lot of heritage in the 300 - but very few of us are old enough to remember it. The Galaxy 500s etc. was at least with us thru the 60s. I also think that most folks, if you asked them what's Ford's flagship, they would likely still tell you the CV, even if it is currently a horrendously outdated car.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    I did say 'stretched' didn't I? The 300 sits on a 120" WB I believe, which is where that LS platform would have to go Even the old LS had a 114" WB, and about 195" length, and a real rear suspension, if I'm not mistaken. Something to work with and start from, the LS V8 was (is) a good car. The Chrysler 300, BTW, a reworked previous generation MB E class chassis, obviously seriously lengthened and not a samll interior.
    Have no problem with old tech as you call it as long as it is good old tech. The Nissan VQ has been around in one form or another for as long as the DT Ford - one is a great engine that has proven itself, the other should have been put out to pasture at least 5 years ago. Same could be said for the GM 3.8 except 10 years ago!
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    not nearly significant enough to overcome the new price difference between the two for an Azera versus Avalon.
    have to call your hand on this one - using the 2006 models of the specific cars you mentioned, kbb.com trade in values, 15000 mile, and excellent conditions, the Avalon is worth $24425.00 the Azera $19850.00 - sure looks like close to that $5 grand to me? We don't know, of course, what will happen to these relative values in the future, of course.
  • allmet33allmet33 Posts: 3,557
    Ahhhh, but captain...what is the price paid for each vehicle???

    I mean...if you go with the prices quoted by jaymagic...the Avalon for $31K and the Azera for $26K...then those trade in value prices reflect that they both hold their value...almost equally.

    I mean...you pay about $6K less for a fully loaded Azera compared to an Avalon, so a year later at trade in, the fact that the value difference is just under $5K. In the case of the Avalon, you pay slightly more, so it's worth slightly more at trade in time.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    no, the Azera is losing about 25% of its value (at least according to kbb and jaymagic's quotes), the Avalon closer to 20%. What you say is, of course, right; the Avalon is worth more used because it costs more new - and also since you get at least of a majority of your money back at trade-in in this particular example - there is little difference in cost between owning that Avalon as opposed to owning that Azera over that period. Furthermore, the extra cost of financing the higher Avalon amount is taken care of in fuel costs. Note that this 'cost equality' will start to widen (in favor of the less expensive car) as they both age.
  • allmet33allmet33 Posts: 3,557
    While the numbers aren't exact, they are however...close. Much closer than most would think between a Hyundai and a Toyota. If we had this conversation about 5 years ago, the difference would be MUCH greater!!!

    However...looking at it from a percentage standpoint, it does seem a bigger difference. 25% of $26K vs. 20% of $31K. While the percentage of loss is greater on the Hyundai, in respect to dollar amount...it's close to the same amount of money. I don't know about you, but you can talk percentages till you're blue in the face, what matters the most to me is how much money I'm maintaining or losing.

    I agree there will be a larger gap further down the road, but that gap will not be as wide as some might think it would be.
  • jaymagicjaymagic Posts: 309
    I don't doubt you are correct on the current resale values on the Avalon and Azera for 06. I am hopeful (but don't really expect) that the Azera will ever match the Avalon in resale percentage. But, the plain fact is that I could easily afford a $26,000 car, but would have had to dip into savings for a $31,000 car. So, for me, the reality of the $5,000 difference in purchase price more than overcame the fact that the Avalon may be worth $5K more in 4 or 5 years.

    BTW, my gas mileage in town has typically been between 22 and 23, which by these boards may be better than average for an Azera. (I play with the power, so don't assume I am trying to eek out every mile). Based on my experience with the Avalon, I would bet that it has better gas mileage than my Azera, because I thought it was ungodly how good the mileage was on my old Avalon. But again the ballpark 2 mpg more, simply did not overcome the purchase price. In the real world, at time of purchase, with the category of this forum being best sedan for UNDER $30,000, I am not sure why the Avalon comparison is that much of an issue, unless you want to compare only the entry level Avalon and then the Azera really does kick butt.
  • allmet33allmet33 Posts: 3,557
    Also, another factor that comes in to play is if you're the type that's worried about trading in 2, 3 or 4 years down the road. Me, personally...I'm keeping my Azera until I can keep it no longer! ;) So for me, resale value means nothing.

    I have to admit, my fuel economy isn't what it could be. On the highway...I'm always cruising around 75-80 mph and since there's so much city driving mixed in...it's hard to see consistent numbers.

    The comparison is creating such a buzz because it's the media that started it. Then to find out that Toyota is looking over it's shoulder because of the moves that Hyundai has made in the last couple years. Because of that, Hyundai has become Toyota's direct competition. It makes sense considering Hyundai has been following the Toyota model, as of late, in bringing value based, dependable products to market. However, Hyundai is doing it with a twist...making the vehicles extremely applealing to most.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    jaymagic - those aren't my numbers, they are from Kelley's BlueBook (kbb.com) (run the numbers yourself if you would like), and the fact of the matter is that few dealers will ever give you what Kelleys quotes unless, of course, they inflate the sales price to cover it. As a rule the only way you can ever get a true sales price for any new car is to pay cash for it - too much room for shenanigans with trade values, financing rebates etc. My Avalon BTW does 27 mpg that 4 mpg difference is about right, and I would regard the Azera Ltd and Avalon XLS as comparable, although invoice + destination on the XLS is a tad over 28k - 31k sounds like a little too much unless of course your local Toyota distributor pumped the price a bit, or they really didn't want your trades.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    exactly, what is important is the gross dollars lost, not necessairly how fast you are losng it. BMWS hold their value really well on a percentage basis, but in terms of intial and gross dollars depreciation are expensive as hell.
  • gamlegedgamleged Posts: 442
    I guess I have the best of both worlds, bought an Azera Limited and saved a few thousand (in comparison to the Avalon, which was likely the second car on my list) and I accept that the Azera will, for a couple-three years yet, have a poorer resale value percentage than would a Toyota product, because I "keep a car forever!"

    Sold my bought-new 1977 Accord at the 20-year and 328,000 mile mark for a hundred bucks to a Honda service adviser 'cause the wiring harness finally went south. Still have my 1990 Accord (bought in '91 with 28k miles, used in conjunction with my kinda ratty-looking old '77 for about 6 years) which now has nearly a quarter-of-a-million miles on it and I'll prolly sell it to a neighbor, as I really don't need the '90 as a backup.

    I'll take a chance on the Azera (though I did buy the extended warranty) and let Hyundai worry about it for the 10 year/100,000 mile warranty period, then I'll wing it from there. Owned only 2 cars over a thirty-year period, hope to now make it THREE cars over a FIFTY year period!... :D
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    certainly if you keep a car 'until the wheels fall off' the resale value differeces will shrink to almost nothing. Hope you're not expecting 328,000 miles out of your new Azera, that kind of number on any car (even a Honda) is amazing adn very rare. Did you have to do anything major to it?
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    the new Challenger a much better looking car IMO than the 300 or even the Charger. Now, if they could only solve all the problems they are having with the V8 renditions. It hasn't been pretty.
  • gamlegedgamleged Posts: 442
    "Did you have to do anything major to it?"

    Weeeeeell, yes. A new engine at about the 169,000 mile mark. I think it was the cheap Italian oil I was using for two years in Italy that turned it into an oil burner. :blush:
    I was going to have it torn down and repaired, but the dealer had a right-off-the-boat-from Japan crated new engine (not a rebuild) for $2000 installed and I went that route. That new engine still was using no oil between changes for the next 159,000 miles until I sold.

    The '90 has required nothing major, to date, even still has the original AC compressor...
  • batistabatista Posts: 159
    I am a member at Dodge/LX Forums and haven't read anything specifically bad for the V8. I know that Consumer Reports has a solid black circle for the V8 300C but they cannot back it up. The MDS (4 cylinder mode to save fuel) hasn't given members any problems and no major leaks with the Hemi have been reported.
    Perhaps some people may have given the V8 versions lower scores because they are unhappy with the fuel economy or that they spent more money compared to the V6 so they are more demanding.
  • cobrazeracobrazera Posts: 352
    Check out the Feb '07 issue of Car and Driver for what may become the new rear drive ford sedan ( if the company itself lasts that long ). They're using a stretched Mustang chassis with Independent Rear Suspension.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    saw that - like GM thanks to Australia. Guess if this happens then the the new Taurus/500 gets discontinued as well. Glad to see that Ford is finally recognizing IRS, a problem with the Mustang since day one.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    from what I understand, the black circle has little to with the engine itself - more about the rear suspension, alignment issues, and tranny/electronic gremlins. While CR has historically somehow found it difficult to rate cars with bad FE well (this being one of their biases), but I believe the consumer/reliability ratings are based on a number/frequency of problem areas reported - I would think that people that opt for the Hemi don't really care too much about FE and are not likely to 'invent' problems just because they happen to get 10 or 12 mpg around town (it is, after all, a hoot to drive and 'difficult' to get your right foot to behave itself).
    The 300C/Charger Hemis have been a monstrous success for DC, despite all this, and the design is a good example for Ford and GM - the type of car that "Detroit" does best. IMO, despite the obvious grins from sub 6 second 0-60 power with the Hemi, the engine of choice is the 3.5, which is doing much better ratings wise.
  • jaymagicjaymagic Posts: 309
    Never doubted your numbers. My quote on the AValon XLS included some options that I have on my Azera. Vehicle Skid Control, heated seats, upgraded JBL sound system, floor mats, etc. That got the sticker to over $34K with invoice right around $30K. The best offer I got (one dealer only) was $30,900. The cash price on my Azera was $26,250. I negotiated the trades after getting the cash price. (I did get a $500 previous Hyundai owner discount).
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    one of the things that would indicate that the Azera may hold its value better than other Hyundai products that historically have not - is the fact that it is apparently selling well enough that Hyundai is NOT offering rebates/financing incentives to sell them. It is never a good sign to see that $3000.00 rebate sign appear on a model you just bought - just like 'rental fleets' it cheapens the product, and costs you later on.
  • batistabatista Posts: 159
    The V6 300 has the same electronics and tranny (5 speed W5A580) as the V8 version.
    The rear suspension is stiffer for the V8 compared to the V6 but not sure why that would cause problems.
    This is why I don't have much faith in Consumer Reports.
    For example, they will good marks to a Buick Regal but not for a Pontiac Grand Prix which is essientially the same car.
  • allmet33allmet33 Posts: 3,557
    Which...if you notice on any of the Hyundai Sales Event commercials you see...the Azera is one model not thrown in there. Seems between the Azera and the Tiburon...there is no marketing at all for those two cars. The Tiburon has enjoyed decent sales, maybe because of it's appeal to those in the tuner world.

    For the life of me, I still don't understand why Hyundai hasn't gotten behind the Azera with a major push to put it out in the mainstream media
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