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Luxury Performance Sedans



  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    Bendix played some pretty surly heavies in the movies. Quite a contrast to his easy-going role as Riley.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    4182 off the top of my head.
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    You're right...could see him today doing some whacking for Tony Soprano et al....(Gandolfini and Bendix) what a team...there would be no messin'round wid der pasta! "FUGITABOUTIT"

    Tony drives the wrong car though on that set! Wouldn't put him in an LPS either. I don't know...what do you think? A 96' Fleetwood brougham with black tinted windows? :confuse:
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    I could see Durante in one of those Chrysler Imperials from yesteryear, and Bendix as Riley, the first kid on his block to get a Ford Edsel.
  • In Germany Audi, BMW and Mercedes are model for model approximately similarly priced.

    An A6 and a 5 may be a bit less than an E. But, price differences would appear not to account for the Audi outselling the BMW. Indeed, next year Audi may undersell BMW -- it seems to ping pong between those two in terms of market share.

    Beats me :confuse:

    My underlying point is the question the contrast between the two "modern countries" buying habits seems to raise.

    If BMW outsold Audi by a factor of 3 in the home country, it would seem pretty much a no brainer that it would carry over perhaps suggesting a market perception (based on sales) that there was a clear choice between the brands.

    The nature of the sales figures (they nip at each other's heels, i.e.) however does not suggest a clear preference -- this year Audi is outselling BMW as noted; but, that success is, historically, ephemeral (for both mfgs.)
  • jrock65jrock65 Posts: 1,371
    I think much of the sales disparity is due to differing brand prestige in the two countries.

    In Germany (perhaps because of the 1 series and the 3 and 5 series with 4 cylinder engines and cloth seats), the BMW "name" doesn't seem to carry much weight, certainly not any more than Audi.

    In the US, BMW clearly has better significantly better recognition and prestige than Audi.
  • drtraveldrtravel Posts: 395
    In the US, BMW clearly has significantly better recognition and prestige than Audi...

    and Acura, Infiniti and Lexus but targets a different buyer than Mercedes.
  • inqinq Posts: 10
    Interesting that 530 is subsidized more than 525. Never understood the rationale for choosing 525 or why bmw evn exports 525s to US. (I could see the car being popular in europe.) 525 is underpowered (low hp + more wight than 325/330) , more expensive than 3, less fuel efficient, and not much more spacious than E90 3. Plus, IMO 525 takes away from the brand prestige or value of 5 series by offering the same engine as the engine of the lower model of the class 3. I don't think any other competitor (A6, E, GS, M) does the same sort of thing. The lowest 5 should be 530.

    PS: Drove 530xi as a loaner for 2 weeks; loved the convenience of extra storage space but did not feel very sporty at all in contrast to reviews.
  • bjbird2bjbird2 Posts: 647
    "Goodnight Mrs. Calabash, wherever you are...." ;)
  • lexusguylexusguy Posts: 6,419
    Agree, it would be like Mercedes trying to sell the E200K here. The 525 is pretty weak for the US market.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    I do believe BMW would be a be able to get by with just the 530 and 550.
    Never have seen the need for a 525.
  • rich545rich545 Posts: 386
    Yeah, but they actually sell a good number of them. Almost as many 525's as 530's so there clearly is a market here for them. What if they bagged them in the US and lost some of those sales entirely because the price of the 525 is lower? That would be dumb. I think they sold something like 900+ 525's last month. They certainly won't stop selling them here if they are selling well. I don't think we can just assume that all of those 525 drivers would automatically buy the 530. Some people really don't care that the car is slow.
  • Until 2005, there were 3 Audi models in the A6 lineup (not including the Avants): 3.0, 2.7T & 4.2.

    The 3.0 normally aspirated V6 coupled with a lackluster tiptronic auto only transmission was, I presume, meant to go head to head with the lowest powered US 5 model of the day.

    Then Audi and Cadillac come along with a 255HP engine (and there are other companies that upped the HP).

    The outgoing Audi 2.7T had been boosted to 265HP and 280 pound feet at sub 2,000 RPM. The incoming A6 was a 3.2 with 255HP and the bottom had been dropped (no more entry level A6 -- or so I thought.)

    Audi has explained that they are offering two models (in terms of motivation) a base 3.2 255HP, replacing the outgoing 3.0 @ 225HP and the much higher zoot 4.2 (Audis sweetest sounding engine, to date.)

    Yet the price of the incoming A6 3.2 was in keeping with the outgoing A6 2.7T (which was the quickest A6 in the land even when both it and the V8 version were equipped with the auto trans.)

    I never understood this, but it does make sense for the NA market to introduce your Premium car @ 255HP. The 525, in contrast, seems to continue the theme of low, medium and high motivation -- obviously coming in as "low."

    However, the 525 can be equipped with many options and can be configured with a 6spd manual (and with or without AWD), making it actually quite sporty -- and no one from the "other guys" can touch them.

    BMW is succeeding in winning my heart and very possibly my future purchase dollars because it is the ONLY clearly differentiated LPS car TODAY.

    Yet, when equipped as most folks probably buy them (Premium, non - sport, a few options and steptronic) they are just an excellent car in a field of mostly similarly excellent cars.

    Indeed, although I swear the test was rigged, if what you want is an LPS car that outperforms the BMW 5, you have but to compare a stripped BMW to a sported-up STS V6. The Cadillac is, relative to the BMW, athletic, while the BMW wallows and fumbles and stumbles at the speeds rise and the curves tighten.

    Now, sport up the BMW and bye bye Cadillac.

    My dealer says most folks get pretty much the lower performance versions of the BMW -- he gladly takes their money, but shakes his head as he makes usually some kind of cryptic comment that I can only interpret as a "lament."

    As if to say, "I remember when BMW drivers overwhelmingly were interested in performance." Now their interest is luxury (which is often not exactly BMW's strongest suit.)

    Having said all of this, I would be pleased as punch to be able to configure a white or pearl green 530xi with all the performance bits available, a 6spd manual and nav and upgraded sound. Not to suggest some displeasure with my A6, but to recognize that today the BMW is differentiated (or at least can be) despite the fact that it is rarely sold that way.

    Of course, around Cincinnati, it would seem that BMW's must be forever on sale since "they're everywhere."

    You can't say that about the Acura RL, Audi A6 and Infiniti M's -- but I have been seeing quite a few more A6's now that Audi, too, has jumped on the subvented 24 month lease programs.

    The other man's grass is always greener.

    At least my wife lets me drive her X3 from time to time.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    "Some people really don't care that the car is slow."

    I never could understand putting a 3 series engine in a bigger car where it doesn't belong.
  • BMW and Audi use their 255HP 6 cylinder engines in their 3 and A4 and their 5 and A6 respectively.

    Indeed in Europe these engines (at least in Audis case) are also put into the 7 (I presume) and A8 (I know) models.

    The cost to put completely different engines in the 3 and 5 or A4 and A6 doesn't make sense to me.

    Perhaps, it would be possible to improve the breathing of these engines in the larger heavier models -- theoretically at least improving both their HP and torque slightly.

    Audi put their 30 valve 2.8 engine @ 190HP in the A4 and a better breathing version in the A6 @ 200HP.

    I don't know if BMW made similar "marketing" offerings in their previous 3 and 5 series, but I would not be shocked if they had done so.

    The new 525 is "about" as well motivated as the outgoing 530 isn't it?

    BMW is offering another price point with the 525 -- overall, I believe this is a smart move in the US market, at least.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    The same inline 6 is offered in the 325i and the 330i.
    It has been modified to produce less hp in the former with 215hp as opposed to 255hp in the latter.

    The exact same engines and outputs are used in the 325i and 525i.
    The exact same engines and outputs are used in the 330i and 530i.

    I would always choose the 325i over the 525i.
    I have never driven the new 530i but I was not all that impressed with the new 330i.
    Rather slow out of the starting gate. Not worth the price, IMHO.

    The 2006 325i is one of the best bargains out there. A lot of fun.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 64,724
    Is the total difference in weight between the 325i and the 525i.. If you leave the wife at home, you'll never know the difference...

    It says here that the difference isn't noticeable, even when the wife is with you..

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  • drtraveldrtravel Posts: 395
    I don't think we can just assume that all of those 525 drivers would automatically buy the 530. Some people really don't care that the car is slow...

    ... actually a lot of people. For most cars that offer a variety of engine sizes the smaller engine is generally the best seller (often by a large amount). Most Edmund forum members would choose the larger engine (at least based on their posts) so once again there is a disconnect between the typical buyer and forum members. Again I ponder just how important the "P" is to most LPS buyers - you know, the folks who don't hang out here.
  • drtraveldrtravel Posts: 395
    My underlying point is the question the contrast between the two "modern countries" buying habits seems to raise.

    Hey Mark,

    Do you know how each German brand was initially marketed when they started to sell them in the US? It's amazing how influential this initial marketing is to the long-term perception of products. At least that's what I learned in Marketing History 101. It applies to most goods not just LPS.
  • drtraveldrtravel Posts: 395
    Based on their amazing success ($$$$) of the 5-series, BMW has decided to invest in another LPS brand to increase world dominance. The companies produce a joint-venture car which will be sold by both companies - the only difference is cosmetic to help differentiate the two cars. The non-BMW partner will sell their version of the car for $50K. If you were a BMW executive, how much would you sell the BMW version of this car?
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    "It says here that the difference isn't noticeable, even when the wife is with you.."

    Except of course if the wife is 350...then you might even need a reinforced seat and suspension system and that could add untold additional weight and then if she is constantly snacking well holy would be stopping at all those convenience food stores and you would never make time...
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Umm ... I'm not sure we need to go there, how about if we just leave Mrs. Calabash, the Schnozz and overweight issues for another forum and get back to the cars?
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    $62,500 with the comfort seats!
    And you know what, people will gladly pay the BMW premium.
    It's that kind of a world.
  • hpowdershpowders Posts: 4,301
    feel like a tennis ball?
    One host sets you up and the other host smashes you for a winner! ;)
  • Hypothetically speaking... sounds like your scenario shows BMW coming to the "Dark Side" of platform sharing ala Lincoln LS and Jag S-Type. If I were a BMW Exec, I simply would use the Force to resist the temptation to dilute my brand in any way ;)
  • Why is it "unfortuneate" that you have become friends with the service managers? I would think that would be a valued relationship in learning about repairs on the different models.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    One host is here as a participant, same as you ... the other host is here as the, um, host. :D
  • jjacurajjacura Posts: 808
    Yes..ouch. Actually a hypothetical exageration of one hosts theory....nevertheless insensitive to our host and everyone else and for that I apologize. :cry:
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Agree, it would be like Mercedes trying to sell the E200K here. The 525 is pretty weak for the US market.

    I've had this debate with BMW fans on other boards, but do you think Mercedes could sell a E280 here with 228hp, which is really more hp than the just-replaced E320? BMW does indeed sell a lot of 525is despite its engine.

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