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Volvo XC90 vs MB M Class vs Acura MDX vs Lexus RX 350 vs BMW X5 vs Cadillac SRX



  • JPhamJPham Posts: 148
    "[The RX330] is a dressed up next gen Highlander" ... isn't the MDX just a dressed-up AWD Odyssey?
  • hopeitsfriday

    Both my wife and I both feel that these lights are ugly and, in general, do not like any vehicles that are sporting these lamps today. Like you said, they look like some cheap aftermarket add-on.

    I am waiting to see what they look like after a few years when they accumulate surface scratching and the nice clear plastic starts turning yellow like most of them seem to do. Knowing Lexus (Toyota's) tendancy for this type of lense to accumulate condensation, not only are they ugly new but they are certain to get uglier as time progresses.

    Seems to me this type of lense only is popular with the under 25 group, not the 45+ group of a typical Lexus buyer.
  • The 04 MDX's tail lights are different, but not ugly in my opinion. I personally prefer the tail lights on the 01 to 03 MDX. Some people actually like the 04 tail lights better, besides the dual exhaust more than makes up for it.
    Getting back to the RX, I remember that the 03 and earlier RX300 had a clear tail light lenses with red reflectors. The clear lenses was very cheesy and on the outside part of tail lights, a part of the round brake lights is actually cutoff by the hatch to make it fit. Almost looks like a after thought. I figure they would improve on it for the 04, but I actually think they made it uglier. Like bobeberhardt said, lenses like that only appeals to the 20s crowd who like to add things to their cars, it does not appeal to the typical buyers of the RX330, middle age females who do not like to sup up cars. Luckily for Toyota, alot of people can look pass a set of ugly tail lights for other quality that the RX has, but its like every other things, there will be a few people who will actually like them.
  • adb3adb3 Posts: 112
    At between $40-45K a pop and with sales of over 10,000 a copy last month, luck ain't got nothing to do with it. No doubt, no two people are the same, and everyone will have their likes and dislikes, but in the marketplace sales determine winners, treaders, and losers. So, considering all the fine offerings in this segment of the market, it is pretty evident that quite a few folks disagree with your assessment of the tail lights.
  • No , its just that quite a few folks can over look my correct assessment of the tail lights. How many people you know choose their car by how the tail lights looks?
  • adb3adb3 Posts: 112
    As my daughter would say, "it's just not that serious." But I must respond just on GP.

    You stated, "my correct assessment of the tail lights." "Correct" by whose standards? Not by mine because I don't agree, and my wife really likes the look--not run of the mill. Has anyone taken a poll? What is your empirical data? Very little mention of the tail lights in the numerous magazines and newpapers that have reviewed the 330, positive or negative.

    My problem with statements such as this is that they project personal opinions as ones shared by the majority of others. Personally, I have NO problem with you disliking the tail lights. That's what makes us individuals. However, in the absence of any other evidence, IMO my point about sales holds more validity concerning the general feeling about the tail lights than your personal view.
  • Just to add one more opinion, I went out to the garage last night and took a good look at my wife's RX330 tail lights, and I have to say that I think they are beautifully crafted. I personally like the way they make the whole back end of the car look. I realize that this opinion is not universally shared by all - I remember Car & Driver's initial criticism when they first reviewed it, pre-launch. I think it also depends a great deal on the exterior color - certainly with the dark colors and black in particular the contrast is much more noticeable, and some may find it to be a bit "too much." On the Silver and Breakwater Blue (which is what we have) it's more of a blended look that I really like.

    Not to start any more "wars" about the RX330's styling, but I personally am not crazy with the overall look of the FRONT end, which to my eyes looks a little bland...maybe "dowdy" is the word I'm looking for. I do like the side profile, and as stated above the rear, much better. Best of all is the overall construction and luxury touches that Lexus gives you, which in this class are unmatched by any other, IMO.
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    what are the chances that adp3 and adb3 would be posting on the same board?
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    I have come to the conclusion that Cadillac drivers do not ead Edmunds - no other way to explain why there are so few posts re the SRX
  • adb3: Its not just your daughter, I was saying the same, it's just not that serious. Its only a tail light. And you are right, it is my personally opinion and the opinion of some people and some car reviewers. Some actually likes the look of the RX330's tail lights, but then some people actually likes the look of after market white tail light lenses add ons too. To each his own I guess.

    adp3: You are right, it depends alot on exterior colors, I agree with you that it looks better with light colors. I think with the dark colors, it make them stand out more and they already draws too much attention by them self. I find the front end of the RX330 average looking, did not change much from the RX300 at all, which was very disappointing. I know that Toyota is capable of making a very nice looking front end. Just look at the front ends of the ES300 and the Toyota Sienna, they both have the contour head lights look, very sleek. BTW, are you two related?
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    actually, both comments were posted by adB3, not by me
  • eaton53eaton53 Posts: 356
    We're waiting for it to dominate the next round of fancy crossover comparos. :-)

    Besides, with all of the rave reviews the XLR and CTS-V are getting, there's a whole lot going on in Caddyland.
  • hopeitsfriday: How many people do you know that choose their car by the way it looks overall? I know some people will be infuriated by my comments but in my opinion the MB, Lexus, and Acura ALL look like @$$ !! I'm sure they are fine vehicles but I wouldn't choose any of them if good looks was my first criteria...-and yes, your assessment of the taillights IS correct!

    In my opinion (and it is merely a subjective opinion) the only vehicles in this category I'd be happy to see in my driveway would be the Cadillac SRX or the Infiniti FX45/35 based on appearance alone.

    hopeitsfriday: On a different note, I disagree with your assessment of the XLR...I think for whatever reason the CTS and SRX both look more "correct" than the XLR. Cadillac messed up with the XLR and toned down the styling (and horsepower) too much. They should have left the XLR looking like the THAT is a good looking car!
    ( )

    adp3: Your conclusion is incorrect. The reason there are so few posts by Cadillac owners on the SRX is that there are so few SRX owners. The SRX is JUST NOW starting to show up on dealers lots so there are very few SRX owners.

    As eaton53 said..."We're waiting for it to dominate the next round of fancy crossover comparos".
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    automole: you missed my point. Before the XC90 hit any showrooms, the Edmunds XC90 board was all lit up about it. There is no such buzz re the Caddilac within the Edmunds community. I don't think that has anything to do with the merits of the vehicle. I think it has to do with "who Cadillac drivers" are, generally. GM can say that today's Cadillac driver is similar to today's Volvo driver, but I suspect a higher percentage of Volvo drivers are web savvy than Caddy drivers. Just a guess.

    Again, I LIKE the SRX and expect to like it more when I get in one. I am just ocmmenting on the EDMUNDS community.

    Perhaps there is a place on the web where Cadillac fans (or foes) congregate, but I don't know of it.
  • Historically even "not really into cars" drivers of Volvos 'knew about' the turbos or the legendary safety & cold weather comfort. There is/was a certain ethusiast mystique that even the most "Mom" of the mom-mobile Volvo owners could share. But the VAST majority of Caddy drivers are STILL not "enthusiasts". Heck Cadillac's last legitamte enthusiat offering was pre-WWII...

    Given the relatively HIGH PRICE that SRX is set at, your generic "motor head type" is not going to be too intersted. Couple that with the LACK of CONTROVERSY (unlike the OUTRAGE some felt toward Porsche for the very concept behind the Cayenne) and the SRX is FRIGHTENINGLY BUZZ_FREE.

    I would HOPE that Caddy does a MUCH BETTER JOB of building interest in this VERY CAPABLE vehicle, but this IS the company that thought Brooke Shields and a duck that faced the wrong way was a "good plan". How freakin' out of touch...

    Speaking of creepy, imagine if they also used:
    <Bob Hope voice> Hey. Lemme tell ya about that Brooke Sheilds. HOWBOUTTHAT. And what about the duck? WHOO BOY ha </bob hope voice>

  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Perhaps there is a place on the web where Cadillac fans (or foes) congregate, but I don't know of it.

    Some of them hang out in places like these:

    2004 Cadillac SRX

    2004 Cadillac SRX

    Cadillac Escalade

    tidester, host
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    why would you go to an Escalade board to talk about the SRX?

    and you posted two links to the same board

    like I said - where is everybody?

    I don't think Volvo Moms are more into cars than Caddy drivers, but I don't think Volvo moms populate these boards, in any case, though some of the XC90 posters are women (maybe 25%?). How did Ford create such a buzz for the Volvos but GM has not for the Caddy?
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    why would you go to an Escalade board to talk about the SRX?

    The question was where do Cadillac fans (or foes) congregate.

    and you posted two links to the same board

    Oops! Slip of the mouse! You can do your own search if you're interested.

    tidester, host
  • b4zb4z Posts: 3,372
    There are very few places that are as active as edmunds when it comes to Cadillacs.
    I guess they don't engender a lot of rabid enthusiasm like other marks.
    Except for the CTS which is wildly popular among it's owners.
    The SRX will take time to build a following.
    If you want, i can give you some URLs for Caddy info and forums.
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    I wasn't looking for other forums as much as commenting on the lack of buzz re the SRX vis a vis the XC90. No big deal. Does GM sell as many units in the US as Volvo? We allknow that a higher percentage of Volvo drivers are engineers, and engineers are more likely to be ont he web than the typical Caddy driver. Again, this is not a "judgment" about either vehicle - just a comment and trying to find some rationale for less Caddy SRX buzz other than what I usually hear ("it's because the SRX will stink")
  • b4zb4z Posts: 3,372
    It is my opinion that most Volvo owners are not car enthusiasts.
    They are looking for a safe, solid vehicle.
    While Volvo may have the buzzwords like "turbo" and "AWD" they are not purely performance oriented like a BMW is.
    Back in the late 70's and 80s when the Volvo and Saab turbos first came out they were pushed as performance cars, when in reality they were sedans with good straighline acceleration and a European driving feel.
    These were not great cars. Nor are they great cars today.

    Who really wants a 5 cylinder engine when the competition offers a straight or V angle 6?

    I personally think there will be a buzz about the SRX but it will take many years for Cadillac to get back in the public's good graces.
    Much like it will take Mercedes a long time to get out of the public's good graces with their currrent problems that they aren't able to fix.

    Another thing is that the cost of the SRX is higher than many people thought it would be.
    I contend a 35K base price and a 41K V8 price would get people interested.
    It would pretty muuh stop many people from considering the Toureg or Volvo.
  • I believe Cadillac biggest problem is this whole image make over thing. The typical Cadillac drivers of yester-years use to be the over 60 population. Now Cadillac is designing their cars for a much younger crowd. They went from Frank Sinatra to Led Zeppelin. They essentially have drop the original buyers before they have gain the new ones. This has been a transformation that is almost 10 years in the making. There is finally some sign that Cadillac will make a slight come back in the luxury market. The SRX did make some buzz about a year ago, then when they announce the price, I think everyone was shocked, almost the same price as the Escalade. Plus the fact that recent Cadillacs have been one disappointment after another and the SRX is, in some people's opinion, is no more than a $60,000 stealth station wagon.
  • One reason there is little chatter is there are virtually none available. My local dealer has not received any and has no literature either. The sales people say they drove one some time ago, but know very little about the vehicle (except that the third row is very tight). They are waiting for the rear drive STS also. The CTS-V isn't available either. Caddy seems to have a number of exciting vehicles in development that car magazines report on, and sometimes drive, as if they will be showing up in show rooms now. GM seems to be doing this with a number of vehicles in addition to the Cadillac models. Others may find the tease acceptable, I don't.
  • I think you hit the 'nail on the head' when you mentioned Cadillac's image problem. Until the CTS arrived I would NEVER have considered buying a new Cadillac due to the dated design and poor performance. With fresh designs like the CTS and SRX Cadillac actually has a chance of getting NEW buyers. Not to be morbid, but if Cadillac plans on surviving long-term they will have to due something to replenish their supply of customers that is currently (and literally) dying off.

    I've been to the Cadillac dealership on several occasions and found the way they interact with me amusing. Cadillac is really not used to dealing with younger customers and I feel extremely out of place lounging around the waiting room with my 1.5 year old daughter. The sales staff and service department are never really sure HOW to treat me and act somewhat uncomfortable around me. I can't remember EVER a time in which I wasn't the youngest customer in the showroom...and I'm not THAT young!

    Cadillac is on the right track and I feel their sales will continue to increase as they redesign the rest of the line. The only real problem I forsee is that they are now designing cars that appeal to younger buyers (CTS) or families (SRX and Escalade) but pricing them out of reach for most.

    In my opinion the SRX is MUCH more than a stealth station wagon but the price should be closer to $40K than $60K.
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    I agree that the pricing, especially in today's market, will drive many people away, perhaps into the waiting arms of Daimler-Chrylser's Pacifica (which is also overpriced).

    Of course, the Audi A6 wagon is overpriced, as is the Volvo XC70 (Cross Country). Heck, what AWD wagon isn't overpriced? The VW Wagon with AWD? The Subaru?
  • We have both the Lexus RX330 and an Infiniti FX45, and after options and discounts they each coincidentally came to about the same price (mid-40's). Although each of these models are considered to be overpriced by some, in comparision to others in this segment, they are considered to be attractive alternatives (relative bargains?) by others. To gauge how much this might be considered to be the case, you only have to look at the sales numbers for each model. The RX330, for example, sold more than 10,000 units last month, so obviously if this vehicle may be considered "overpriced" by many, there were 10,000+ customers who thought the price they paid was at least fair enough to get them to sign on the dotted line. Those models that are not so mainstream yet relatively pricey, with more of a sport/performance bent, like the Audi allroad (my previous car) and FX45, sell in fewer numbers but as a result are more exclusive to own. I think the SRX will fall into this category too.

    It all depends on what your preferences (size, luxury, prestige and performance) are and how much you're willing to spend. There are plenty of wagon/car-based SUV's to choose from in each price range. And of course the lower the price point, the greater the potential customer base.
  • automole: I know what you mean when you say that Cadillac dealers are really not used to dealing with younger customers. When I went into my local Cadillac dealer, they were not use to dealing with young informed customer at all. I asked a bunch of question and they could answer just a few. All they kept saying was the North Star engine is one of the best, but they didnt know the technical specifications. BTW, they had a whole bunch of CTS there but no SRX at all.

    JBaumgart: I think that Lexus sell so many RX330 is because they get the upgrade minded customers from Toyota. Toyota and Lexus are almost starting to be a house hold name when it comes to quality and reliability. Buyers who wish to do very little homework and who are not motor heads are the RX330 biggest customers. If you ask most RX330 owner if the engine was 2 valves per cylinder or 4 valves or what the compression ratio of the engine is, I bet over 75% would not know without looking it up.
  • maxhonda99maxhonda99 Posts: 1,289

    How many CTS customers or SRX customers would know how many valves their engine has, compression, size of engine, etc.? over 75%?
  • Another question: If Lexus sells so many RX330's from upgrade-minded customers from Toyota, you would think Cadillac would do the same for upgrade-minded customers of Chevy, Pontiac, Buick and Oldsmobile. I agree that as a whole Lexus buyers may not be the "motorheads" that buyers of other makes might be, but I wouldn't sell them so short when you say they don't do their homework. I think you hit the nail on the head when you said that, "Toyota and Lexus are almost starting to be a household name when it comes to quality and reliability" which to me would indicate that Lexus owners are at least bright enough to recognize quality when they see it! AND, if you buy a quality product that works as advertised for many years of ownership, there is little need to have to be a motorhead in the first place!
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    I would buy the hybrid RX330 (when it comes out) sight unseen - that is how much I trust Toyota
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