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Model S Decimates Large Premium/Luxury Car Market

jerry33

(S85-3/2/13 traded in) X LR: F2611##-3/27/20
Supporting Member
Mar 8, 2012
20,655
28,443
Texas
I do agree that the ultimate luxury is a silent, vibration free car, but the Model S isn't that. I've never had so many squeaks, rattles and whirrs in a car since I drove my grandfathers 1970-ish model Datsun. And I've driven some crappy cars that were in the shop more than they were running... but none were ever this noisy.
FWIW, all there is in my car is tire noise. I've never had any squeaks or rattles (In the interest of full disclosure, there have been rattles when items I placed in the car moved around, but that's not the car's fault)
 

ggnykk

Active Member
Feb 7, 2016
1,573
807
Earth
As was posted before, Tesla Model S officially classified by German Federal Motor Vehicle Authorities as part of Oberklasse - along with MB S-Class, BMW 7- Series, Audi A8, A7, etc.

BMW 5-Series, MB E-Class belong to a lower class of vehicles.

See post upthread for link.

Don't get me wrong, I am a big fans of Tesla. But seeing how many people here trying to argue Tesla Model S is in the same category of Mercedes S class and BMW 7 series is beyond me. They are the same category in price, but certainly not size. The following numbers are all pulled from their respective official websites.

If Tesla wants more people buying their cars, they need to tackle the problem where people are basically paying BMW 7's price for a BMW 5 size car. For some people or environmentalist, they are okay with paying the premium. But I bet for a lot of people, that's a very tough pill to swallow. The price of Model S needs to go down further (or size it up to match BMW 7 dimensions), in order for more people to buy more Model S. I bet Tesla can achieve that when battery cost goes down in the next few years or so.



Wheelbase Length and Overall Length [all in inches]

Tesla Model S: 116.5, 196 (Model S | Tesla Motors)

BMW 5 series: 116.9, 193.1 (BMW 535i xDrive Sedan - Features & Specs - Specifications - BMW North America)
BMW 7 series: 126.4, 206.2 (BMW 750i xDrive Sedan - Features & Specs - Specifications - BMW North America)

Mercedes E class: 113.2, 192.1 (the brand new 2017 Mercedes E class is longer than these two numbers) (2016 E350 4MATIC Sedan | Mercedes-Benz)
Mercedes S class: 124.6, 206.5 (2016 S550 Sedan | Mercedes-Benz)
Mercedes S class extended wheelbase (Maybach): 132.5, 214.7 (2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600 Sedan | Mercedes-Benz)
 
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Any one attribute is never the whole thing.

Model S has advantages and disadvantages vs the competition. Like every other automaker.

The complaint by Europeans that Tesla seats are inferior are laughable.

Tesla's Next Gen Seats are the exact same seats made by Recaro that are in Mercedes E-Class sans cooling.

I have never heard of any European say Mercedes E Class has sub par seats.

I can't wait for the incessant complainers to leave Tesla.

- - - Updated - - -




The volume S-Class leader is the S-550 that starts at $95,960 before dealer discounts.

Regarding the seats. Never owned a mercedes so I compare with bmw. The next gen is comparable to bmw's sport seats. But upgrading to a sport seat is something like $600. Bmw also have what they call comfort seats which is a $2500 option. That is what the next gen seats should have been like. Niw they are just overpriced...
And they seriously need to fix the bench in the back seat. How hard can it be ti go to a bmw or mercedes or audi or vw or volvo dealer and check out the back seats in a E/5/A6/Passat/V70?


Regarding prices. My S85 as a company lease cost me about $1000 a month (net so after taxes) for the same money I can get for example a Volvo v70, bmw 5series, etc. A S-class? No, it would be at least twice as much...
 
This is true for external dimensions but my Model S is a far bigger car inside than my mom's CLS 55AMG, which feels positively cramped compared to the Tesla. I don't see how adding 8" to the wheel base of the Tesla to match the S series will make it a better car, other than making it less maneuverable. It already has far more storage space than an S series.


Don't get me wrong, I am a big fans of Tesla. But seeing how many people here trying to argue Tesla Model S is in the same category of Mercedes S class and BMW 7 series is beyond me. They are the same category in price, but certainly not size. The following numbers are all pulled from their respective official websites.

If Tesla wants more people buying their cars, they need to tackle the problem where people are basically paying BMW 7's price for a BMW 5 size car. For some people or environmentalist, they are okay with paying the premium. But I bet for a lot of people, that's a very tough pill to swallow. The price of Model S needs to go down further (or size it up to match BMW 7 dimensions), in order for more people to buy more Model S. I bet Tesla can achieve that when battery cost goes down in the next few years or so.



Wheelbase Length and Overall Length [all in inches]

Tesla Model S: 116.5, 196 (Model S | Tesla Motors)

BMW 5 series: 116.9, 193.1 (BMW 535i xDrive Sedan - Features & Specs - Specifications - BMW North America)
BMW 7 series: 126.4, 206.2 (BMW 750i xDrive Sedan - Features & Specs - Specifications - BMW North America)

Mercedes E class: 113.2, 192.1 (the brand new 2017 Mercedes E class is longer than these two numbers) (2016 E350 4MATIC Sedan | Mercedes-Benz)
Mercedes S class: 124.6, 206.5 (2016 S550 Sedan | Mercedes-Benz)
Mercedes S class extended wheelbase (Maybach): 132.5, 214.7 (2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600 Sedan | Mercedes-Benz)
 
Last week I test drove the MB S550 awd. Meh!

The Tesla is better at drivetrain smoothness, braking smoothness, in town acceleration, and technology. The seat was better in the MB. The constant speed ride was smoother but sloppier in the MB. The advanced safety, autopilot type features work much better in the Tesla.

The comparison of car segments is best done by relative car costs. I agree with the op. Tesla Decimates the competition.
 
The comparison of car segments is best done by relative car costs. I agree with the op. Tesla Decimates the competition.

As I wrote a few posts back...
Regarding prices. My S85 as a company lease cost me about $1000 a month (net so after taxes). For the same money I can get for example a Volvo v70, bmw 5series, etc.
An S-class? No, it would be at least twice as much...
So there you have it compared by car costs...
 
As I wrote a few posts back...
Regarding prices. My S85 as a company lease cost me about $1000 a month (net so after taxes). For the same money I can get for example a Volvo v70, bmw 5series, etc.
An S-class? No, it would be at least twice as much...
So there you have it compared by car costs...

That may be so in Sweden. Here in the US the lease on my p85d is ~1700 per month. I could have a nicely optioned S550 for around 1200-1400.
 

WannabeOwner

Well-Known Member
Nov 2, 2015
6,958
3,728
Suffolk, UK
In the UK the tax on Petrol / Diesel is such that I can save GBP 100 (US$ 140) a month (i.e. Electricity cost vs. Petrol/Diesel) for every 10,000 miles I drive p.a. Annual mileage is 25,000 so add GBP 250 (US$ 360) to my monthly finance cost and I can afford a lot more luxury in an EV than I can in an ICE ...

... so in UK, at least, hard to compare Luxury (between EV and ICE) just on sticker-price. We also have business tax relief on company purchase of an EV (100% first year right-off, which is in addition to the GBP 5,000 government rebate). That too makes a huge difference to perception of purchase price [for anyone who is making a company, rather than private, purchase]

** Assumptions: commute is 40 miles each way, thus week-days I can charge exclusively at work for "free"; assuming some Supercharger use, thus only charging at home" infrequently, and we have cheap rate ("Economy-7") night-time electricity rate, so this may not work to quite the same extent for all Brits :) although the saving is still real even without those factors.
 
J

jbcarioca

Guest
TM make at least 25% gross margin on Model S. Apparently current buyers accept that proposition.
So in fact we're buying a 5-series BMW competitor at the price of a 7-series. Kudos to TM!
BMW gross margin on almost the entire product line exceeds 30%, when calculated one-by-one. BMW dies much R&D with limited production models (M1, Z1, i3, i8...) especially in materials, new production techniques and real-world testing. Remember that huge capital costs are not typically included in specific model gross margin costs so there is a big discrepancy when looking at single model gross. This means General R&D and new model de elopement are excluded. So, examining corporate gross margin (BMW about 12% at the moment) has no recuse analogue at Tesla today. We're it to have Tesla would be including Supercharging, Battery R&D, Model X and 3, in their figures. I'll hazard a guess that BMW has higher per-model gross margins than does Tesla, but BMW does not disclose that. However, leasing risks make for much greater volatility in nets for established manufacturers than they do thus far for Tesla, further obscuring effective gross margins were those to actually reflect correct net selling revenue.

I once had had pretty good expertise in this subject but I am out of date, so I am not claiming to be authoritative in this post.
 
As pointed out elsewhere, E, 5 series and A6 are all at the lower end of price range for Model S. On the other hand, my P85D with same configuration as yours minus the exec seats in the back was 124k - and this is not in the price range of the E/5/A6. I love the car, but the interior feel is less than the 650 I leased before (103k), or to the S550 (110k the one I tested), A8 (93k) and Panamera 4S (113k) I compared it with. I am awaiting the X to show up - people say interior feel is a great improvement. If model S continues to improve, I will buy my next one. For now, interior is OK, but not great.

What I said is not at odds with your comments at all. My whole point is MS' interior is no inferior than the mid of the range German makes, rather, it might even be a little bit better. It's got less luxurious look or touch than their range topping S/7/Panamera, but would I trade the 17 inch screen for more wood veneer coupled with a ridiculously small screen with poor UI? Absolutely not. I was riding in my friend's Cayenne just two days ago, the littering of all the knobs/switches and the ludicrous UI struck me like an Enigma machine vs. a iPad.
 
Luckily that polling has already been done several times, I believe you lose.

"After averaging national pricing data, the report said owners paid an approximately 80% premium on their Tesla cars compared to the average selling price of their previous cars....The results also showed that if drivers had not purchased a Tesla some would have rejected going the luxury car route and instead bought a car with an average selling price as low as $30,000, once again indicating the high premium drivers give Tesla. Of those surveyed only 13% of respondents said they would have purchased a vehicle with an average selling price higher than the Tesla Model S, which begins at $75,000 for the 70D version."

http://www.thestreet.com/story/13198798/1/the-average-tesla-driver-isnt-who-youd-expect.html

Well, thanks Drivin, for proving I'm not crazy. I really didn't think most Model S owners were considering the 7-series or S-class when they made their buying decision. It seemed like a mix of Prius/Volt owners, mid-range German car owners (5-series, E-class, A6...M3, C63, etc.) and very few 7-series/S-class people.

It's a particularly odd comparison when you consider that the only way you can get a Model S to cost as much as a well equipped (real-world) S-Class is to buy the P90D. The kind of person buying a P90D is buying it for the performance, with "luxury" being secondary. If you're considering a P90D, you're likely cross-shopping an M5 or E63. You choose the Tesla because the tech is awesome, maybe because you care about the environment (feel good), and mainly because it does 0-60 in 3 seconds. I don't see that person cross-shopping boats like the 7-series and S-class.

Then on the opposite end of the spectrum you have the 70 and 70D people, who are certainly not cross-shopping $100k+ Mercedes with their $60-$70k (after incentive) Teslas.

So the goldilocks 85D/90D people in the middle with $80-$100k (after incentive) Teslas are the only fair comparison, and even then, I doubt half of them cross shopped the S-class. I know I didn't. If I didn't buy the 85D I was seriously considering a C63 or Jaguar F-Type (yep, want to talk about apples and oranges? hah)
 
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I'm really shocked that we are still discussing if the Model S competes with the likes of the Mercedes S class. With both being 5 passenger 4 door sedans around the same price range and offering the best of what each manufacturer has to offer, the Model S, the S Class and other flagship sedans clearly compete with each other. The Model S is about the same size and weight and is actually wider than the S Class. We have less room in our garage width-wise when a Model S is parked than when an S Class is parked.

Just one test drive in a Model S and we completely lost interest in acquiring an S Class. Same goes for several of our friends who we've arranged to have test drives in a Model S. We love tesla so much that we actually arranged for Tesla to have a special test drive event at our country club and we don't even yet own one. This is a testament to what a great sedan Tesla has built and the fact that it dominates the segment is hardly surprising.

And finally take a look this popular thread on the S Class forum on how several Mercedes owners ended up purchasing a Model S over an S Class and how happy they are with their Tesla.

http://mbworld.org/forums/new-s-cla...-model-s-vs-s550-why-did-you-choose-s550.html
 
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I'm really shocked that we are still discussing if the Model S competes with the likes of the Mercedes S class.

I don't think anyone is saying it doesn't compete with the S class, and if you read my post, I specifically mentioned the case in which it does. The discussion was that 100% of Model S sales in the US were not from people who were considering an S-class, and as such, saying they STOLE all of those S-class sales is very inaccurate. They may have "stolen" 1-2k S-class sales, but certainly not anything like what that chart was trying to show.
 
I don't think anyone is saying it doesn't compete with the S class, and if you read my post, I specifically mentioned the case in which it does. The discussion was that 100% of Model S sales in the US were not from people who were considering an S-class, and as such, saying they STOLE all of those S-class sales is very inaccurate. They may have "stolen" 1-2k S-class sales, but certainly not anything like what that chart was trying to show.

Nothing is ever 100% :)

The bottom line is it seems Tesla has taken away market share from every one of their competitors. Every one of Tesla's competitors lost market share to Tesla. They all had their market share reduced by large percentages.

What's amusing is that they managed to do this with hardly any advertising, dealership presence or an established brand name. It's surprising that I still run into quite well to do people who hardly know of Tesla so Tesla is just getting started. I still have many people left to inform of Tesla :)
 
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Nothing is ever 100% :)

The bottom line is it seems Tesla has taken away market share from every one of their competitors. Every one of Tesla's competitors lost market share to Tesla. They all had their mare share reduced by large percentages.

What's amusing is that they managed to do this with hardly any advertising, dealership presence or an established brand name. It's surprising that I still run into quite well to do people who hardly know of Tesla so Tesla is just getting started.

Totally agree (100%? LOL). And yes, what Tesla has done is amazing, no matter what is or isn't on that chart. ;)
 

ggnykk

Active Member
Feb 7, 2016
1,573
807
Earth
I don't think anyone is saying it doesn't compete with the S class, and if you read my post, I specifically mentioned the case in which it does. The discussion was that 100% of Model S sales in the US were not from people who were considering an S-class, and as such, saying they STOLE all of those S-class sales is very inaccurate. They may have "stolen" 1-2k S-class sales, but certainly not anything like what that chart was trying to show.
Like I said before, I bet majority of those German Big 3 sedan drop in 2015 has little to do with Model S "stealing" their sales. It was mainly coz people decided to buy SUV instead of a sedan due to lower fuel price.
 
Like I said before, I bet majority of those German Big 3 sedan drop in 2015 has little to do with Model S "stealing" their sales. It was mainly coz people decided to buy SUV instead of a sedan due to lower fuel price.

Except SUVS and CUVs have been around for decades and those who want one have always been able to buy them. And wouldn't Tesla be affected by the situation as well?

There's no way to spin this and I'm sure the Germans are still somewhat in denial but Tesla managed to decimate the upper end of the premium/luxury car market.

And they are just getting started.
 

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