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High End Luxury Cars



  • enigmaoneenigmaone Posts: 128
    the Navigation system is still optional, I believe. But the optional mark levinson stereo system is compatible with the GPS nav. system. And so is the stock stereo, which I'm assuming remains a Pioneer system.

    The GPS nav. system remains mostly touch screen but I believe the stereo controls are not as much a part of the touch screen display as they are in the current LS400.

    The stereo does have some controls on the steering wheel.
  • I am surprised that I did not find any discussions
    regarding Audi A8. I currently drive MB C280 and Lexus LX450. Love my Lexus and hate my MB especially during the winter. I'll be looking for a new car in couple of month and my main candidates are BMW 740il and Audi A8. Many of my friends use to drive BMW but resently switched to Audi and very happy with this car.
    Any comments would be appreciated.
  • I am surprised that I did not find any discussions
    regarding Audi A8. I currently drive MB C280 and Lexus LX450. Love my Lexus and hate my MB especially during the winter. I'll be looking for a new car in couple of month and my main candidates are BMW 740il and Audi A8. Many of my friends use to drive BMW but resently switched to Audi and very happy with this car.
    Any comments would be appreciated.
  • enigmaoneenigmaone Posts: 128
    The A8 is a good car but it is overlooked because first, it's a $70K Audi! Second, because Audi doesn't really market the car! Third, Alot of people shy away from buying it because of it's all-aluminum construction which only maybe a dozen body shops around the country can fix. Forth, Audis aren't exactly known for high resale value. And when you buy a $70K car, below average resale value really hurts!

    But otherwise it's a excellent car. Breakthrough technology, AWD(good if you need it), gorgeous interior, understated but elegant and tasteful exterior design, and has all the features one would expect for it's price tag!
  • rollierollie Posts: 337
    Regarding post #66:

    I agree with all your points on the A8 except the price. If anybody pays $70k for an A8 they should have a hole installed in their head where a brain can be inserted. The A8s have been moving at huge discounts for most of their time on the market. I read of several people buying them for the low to mid 50s. This makes it more compelling buy but for me doesn't overcome the major issues you mentioned (particularly the aluminum construction).

  • enigmaoneenigmaone Posts: 128

    I was using MSRP as a reference. Discounts vary greatly based on time of year and region of the country. So it's kind of hard to put a general and accurate number on what people actually pay for one. $70K is a approximate MSRP.
  • rollierollie Posts: 337
    Regarding post #69:

    I certainly agree that it's hard to quantify discount prices due to timing but believe me, there is no point in time from here forward (at least not until a new model A8 comes out) that the A8 isn't selling at a discount from MSRP. It's a great car notwithstanding the issues you pointed out already but it simply isn't moving.

    By the way, unless things have changed drastically, Edmunds lists the 2000 A8 MSRP as $62,525 with destination charge.


  • enigmaoneenigmaone Posts: 128

    Did you forget about all the options that are available on the car?

    Do you really think you are going to find even one Audi A8 4.2 Quattro on dealer lots with a sticker price of $62000 on the window?
  • Thanks a lot guys for your input.
    I am more puzzled now than I was before, but I
    have a feeling that at the end I will probably go
    with BMW 740IL. My only concern is that as soon as I get it BMW will introduce new body style, and I'll be driving an obsolete car. I hate when it happens.

    Thanks again.
  • enigmaoneenigmaone Posts: 128
    It will hardly be a obsolete car. As long as you can drive it, get it fixed, get parts, etc. for it, it is not obsolete.

    Besides the current 7-series is a excellent car to begin with in most respects. So why not buy one?
  • Will pick up my 2000 A8 is equipped with what I call the 3 basic options (alloy wheels, xenon lamps, premium comfort package--ie., heated seats)...I say basic because looking at 5 dealers' inventory I didn't find any with fewer than these 3 options. Mine also has navigation package. All told, $66805 and sold for $61347 or $2550 over invoice. This however, from the "new kid on the block" dealer in the area most anxious to build his sales volume. Everyone else wanted at least $1000 more.
    Thanks, MJC
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    This detours away from the last few post, but I it was very interesting to me. Coming home from work this morning I saw S-Type 4.0 trailing behind a 1999 or better Vanden Plas. The woman in the Vanden Plas was looking at the S-Type and she seemed to give it her approval, but then she turned around and smiled at me. You had to be there, both of these women were really "feeling" their Jaguars. The old XJ body does look a little
    dated running along the S-Type, but it's still the epitome of class. All Jaguars are.

  • jodys2jodys2 Posts: 9
    Thanks Merc1 for mentioning the 'J' word. I monitor this post, just hoping for such a thing.

    My '2 cents', the S body style is a sad statement. The only 2 things I can give it credit for are: the moon roof/sun roof and cool TV advertisements. I couldn't get past the outside appearance to even test drive one.

    Of course, I am a bit prejudiced. I have a 2000, XJ8 L, and think the body style can not be beat. Oh, concerning the Vanden Plas. That is a regal car. My Dad has a 2000 model...

    Just for the record, I ordered mine first ;)
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I just noticed that you can get the 370-hp supercharged V8 in a new 2000 model called the Vanden Plas SC, anyone here have any experience with this model?

  • Jodys2

    Please take a look at sedans conference #2946 (MB S430 Alternatives) posts #58,59,60. The conference needs some reports of jag. ownership exprience. I posted mine; however the more the better.


    I test drove the VDP S/C before purchasing a standard 2000 VDP. The power was unbelieveable, but costly and in my case not needed. My new jag is flawless so far, very happy with it. I like the S type also, they are different but compliment each other and the jag. legacy.
  • Instead of buying Jaguar XJ8 one should buy S-Type 4.0. The XJ8 is very small car for its size outside. I looked at S-Type and XJ8 and ended up buying S-Type V8 because XJ8 was too small on the inside. IT had very little headroom plus trunk was very small.

    I am glad I bought S-Type V8. So far I have 10500 miles on it, and I love it. Fabulous car. So far no problems too. It handles great, drives smoothly, is almost Lexus quiet, and has tons of features. And it looks very good too.
  • Out of this list, the BMW 740i or 740il is the best car. The S430 is probably a better car but when considering how much it costs, its not that much of a better car than the BMW 740-line. None of the above cars handles as well as a 740, looks as good as a 740, or has as much character as a 740. Although the Jaguar comes close in the character department.

    But all of the above cars are still excellent cars in their own ways.
  • jk40jk40 Posts: 1
    You asked about an Audi A8. I have owned 6 Jags and a 740 and read about the technology of the A8 so decided to try one. It is as fine a car as I have ever owned. The quattro is amazing in the ice and snow. I even try to see where its limit is on snow and haven't found it yet. Even on wet roads in the summer it doesn't slide in high speed turns. This is probably the feature that puts the A8 above the Jag & BMW. It has every feature that my 740 had and has a little softer ride. Features for the money - Jags fall very short of the competition for the same price. The Jag S-Type is a Ford Taurus with a nicer interior but if you ever owned a real Jag the S isn't one. Resale on the A8 is falling a little behind a 740 but I paid less for one also because the dealer was willing to discount the car off of the $70,000 msrp.
  • First of all, going back to something a few responses back, some were saying that Lexus copied MB's "430" badging. Does anyone remember the '93 MB "190 E". In 1994 MB revamped their entire badging system, using the number to represent displacement, while Lexus used this system from the start. I'm sure MB didn't do this because they were bored.(a side note-Acura also did this, but they need a V8 to really compete)

    Second, I know that the '00 LS 400 has a higher bhp than BMW & MB (282-BMW 740i/740il, 275-MB S430, 290- LS 400). The '01 LS 430 will probably have a horsepower boost to lift it over the S500(302bhp). Mix that with the stetched wheelbase of 3"-4"(best guess when I compared the '00 & '01), the additional options coming next year, and the fact that Lexus probably will not raise the price more than $5000, I think that Lexus will probably win the V8 segment of this market, with MB winning the V12 for '01, as I heard they are coming out with a new V12 engine. Don't get me wrong, BMW will still have their following, catering to the people who like the "thrill of driving"
  • Mercedes has always, sorta, named their cars based on engine displacement. The 190E was the sole Mercedes model whose model name did not follow engine displacement. Otherwise, the 300E, 420SEL, 300SEL, followed, strictly, engine displacement size. Of course then Mercedes had cars like the 560SEL and 560SEC which did not have 5.6L V8s but had 5.5L V8s.

    And looking back to when the last generation S-class came out in 1991, you can see that Mercedes renamed the SEL with a 4.2L V8 from 420SEL in 1990 to 400SEL in 1991, even though the 1991 retained a 4.2L V8. Not to mention when the E-class finally got a V8 motor, it was named 400E instead of 420E. Maybe Mercedes renamed their 4.2L powered cars too 400E because Lexus had the "400"! And later, of course, Mercedes dropped the SEL, E, SEC, SL, from the end of the model names and changed the designations from 400E, 420SEL, to E400, S420. Again, maybe because of Lexus they did it!

    See how lame that argument is that Lexus renamed their 2001 LS400 to LS430 because Mercedes has S430 and E430?
  • The 2001 LS430s bhp output remains at 290 bhp but torque jumps to 320 lb-ft, up from 300lb-ft. Plus more torque comes lower down in the RPM range, which will improve performance noticeably.

    Wheelbase on 2001 LS430 is up over 2" as opposed to 2000 LS400. Height is increased 2.4". And in the process, 2001 LS430 has more overall interior room and a larger trunk than 2000 S-class.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Mercedes made the name changes so that their lineup would be easier to understand. Mercedes cars have had engine displacement bading for over a hundred years. It was getting out of hand having, CE, TE, TD, SE, SEL, E, SDL, SD, and others. All they did was take the letter from each class and place it first, followed by the engine size. It most definitely was not done because of some Japanese car. Acura following this has been a disaster, nobody knows or remembers what a RL or TL is unless they have one. They spent all that time grooming the "Legend" only to drop the name, very dumb.

  • flint350flint350 Posts: 250
    My Lexus dealer called me this weekend to solicit a $1000 deposit to secure my place in line to buy a new LS430 from him. While we were talking, he re-iterated that the Lexus reps are telling him that the engine will be over 300hp and not the advertised 290. Not that it's all that important as long as the performance is there, just a point of interest.
    Enigma - when I go down to talk with the dealer about the deposit, I would want more than just a place in line. That implies whatever comes in (color, equip) is what you may have to settle for. I am not inclined to do that. I want a fully loaded car with a reasonable color choice. If I am going to spend the big bucks and live with it for quite a while, I want choice. So, is the deposit a waste of time? Or, if I just wait to order what I want, what are the chances of getting shut out for a LONG time. I can order the MB S430 from the factory exactly as I want it and get it in 3 mos. Will Lexus be about the same or a little longer, or is the early demand probably going to eat up all early allotments? Interested in your opinion on this. Thanks
  • flint,

    Usually the dealer will ask you for color choice and equipment choice when that data becomes available to the dealer itself. Currently, no Lexus dealer knows the exact 10 colors that will be offered or the exact standard and options that will be available. And the most important thing, they don't know the price yet, of the standard car or prices for options.

    This is what our dealer did with cars before they came out- I'll take for example the RX300 before it came out-
    1) Even before Color choice, equipment choice is known, the dealer takes deposits from customers so that they can get one of the earlier RX300s. Of course, with a popular product, the later you put a deposit, the later you get the car.
    2) When color choices, combinations, standard features and options are known(usually about a month before the cars hit showrooms), dealer ask each individual customer what options they want, what they don't want, what they can live without, what options they can't live without, and their top 2 to 3 color choices that they would like.
    3) Dealer puts in order preferences for each customer every few weeks. Order preferences are basically where the dealer sits down at the computer and punches in what the dealership needs in colors, equipment and options to fill customer orders. And what Lexus NA does is try to get each dealer the proper cars they need(with proper colors, equipment, etc.) to sell to customers or to fill pre-existing orders.

    And typically the cars do basically appear in the order that you were on the waiting list. Usually the only times that things go wrong:

    1) is if the color you wanted, nobody else wants, and therefore they don't produce many of them.

    2) the equipment levels you want is something that Lexus does not build alot of. Example: You want a car with Leather but no moonroof. If someone wanted a car like that, they are going to be waiting a long time for delivery!

    3) Production problems have cut production. Of course, it rarely happens these days!

    4) the dealer you put a deposit/order with is run by a bunch of morons. And they don't bother placing order preferences, etc. with Lexus or they never bothered to ask customer for color, equipment preferences.

    5) And of course, if could be any combination of the above 4 reasons.

    The Deposit is not a waste of time. As it "should" guarantee that you get the car sooner rather than later. For example, if you put a deposit and you are #10 on the list of customers who are waiting for 2001 LS430s, you should be about the 10th one to get the car. I have seen some customers get cars earlier rather than later. And i have also seen the opposite happen. Again, what happens depends mainly on color availability and equipment availability.

    Even if you order a LS430 once colors, equipment, options, and prices are set in or around August. You should be able to get a LS430 built the way you want it, in about 3 months. Usually even with high demand, 3 months is the longest it would take for your car to arrive from Japan from the time you ordered it.

    I would go through and pick your dealers and salespersons brain apart with reference to ordering and what the deposit means as far as your place in line.
  • flint350flint350 Posts: 250
    Enigma, thanks a lot. That really helped and I will visit my dealer soon to get the answers you suggest.
  • I purchased a 750il (1997) to replace a 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis LS. I miss the simplicity of the controls on the Mercury and its automatic headlights and digital door locks.

    I am afraid the BMW will spoil me and I won't want any other car. I just wish the radio and the a/c were easier to operate. I am afraid to try the phone. :)
  • I think(hence: my opinion) Acura dropped "Legend" because they wanted a true luxury car to compete with BMW, Lexus, MB. People would think of the legend as an "almost luxury car". Granted, if they really wanted to compete, it would have been really nice and generous of them to add at least 2 more cylinders; among other things.
    Also-any opinions on the BMW 7-Series protection trim. Is a BMW armored car really necessary. If anyone knows the sales numbers for this, that would be great.
  • Enigma,
    Do you have any idea on the price range of the '01 coupe(possibly called SC 430).
  • 2001 SC430 hardtop convertible will be over $60K. But not more than in the mid to high $60s.

    Acura dropped the "Legend" name becase the Acura name wasn't recognized and the Legend name was recognized by everyone. Typically when you would ask a Acura Legend owner what car they owned, they would tell you Legend. When you ask a mecedes E430 or a BMW 740i, or a Lexus LS400 owner you get the answer, typically, of Mercedes, BMW, or Lexus. In the end because of the name association problem, the Legend was never truly considered a luxury car buy buyers and the general public. And actually the 1st and 2nd generation Legends were really not luxury cars, they were closer to sport-luxury sedans then to actual luxury sedans like the LS400.
  • Lexus steered its way clear around the ES250.
    I used to drive a Legend. It was nice size,
    well made, powerful enough. It was no LS400
    in real life as on paper. I doubt the RL
    has an essentially different character...
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