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NoI4plz 12-27-2012 09:33 PM

As 2013 Approaches so Does the growing choices in the Luxury Crossover Market
 
As 2012 is closing out, 2013 fast approaches. I would like to thank all of you guys and gals for an awesome 2012, and my first year in the fest, as a commenter and not just a sideline reader. In addition Happy holidays and Happy New Years in advance.

We all come to this forum, as either seeking advice and information for our future decisions on our vehicles and/or life or enjoy the company of fellow vehicle enthusiasts. The purpose of today's post is the latter.

As 2013 approaches, the luxury crossover market landscape is about to change for the better or worse:dunno:

In the past couple of threads we've seen, discussed, and sometimes hated on the next generation BMW x5 (f15). Whatever the design may end up like, we know that it will be the next evolution of BMW's driver SAV line. However the F15 introduction is going to be an interesting one, as many other luxury brands are also introducing their newest vehicles as well. This thread aims to find out what vehicles, you as the buyer, lessee, observer, admirer, or anything else that you will either cross compare the next generation X5 with, or forge for the X5.

Here are the choices set to LAUNCH or currently available in 2013:

Acura MDX (MY2014)
Audi Q7 (MY2014)
BMW X5 (MY2014)
INFINITI QX60 (currently the JX60) (MY2013)
LEXUS RX (MY2013)
MERCEDES ML (MY2013)
PORSCHE CAYENNE (MY2013)
VOLKSWAGEN TOUAREG (MY2013)

Please chime in and discuss your

likes or dislikes
personal experiences with said vehicle or said vehicle's predecessor or said vehicle's powertrain cousin
possible technology introductions in the new choices
anything honestly.

Do vote on the poll question! Lets have an intellectual or frankly dumb discussion on the new landscape of the Luxo-Crossover Market!

GoHawks63 12-27-2012 10:07 PM

Here are my thoughts on some of the vehicles.

Acura MDX - I have owned Acuras for over 19 years before I fell in love with the Cadillac CTS coupe and traded in my 2006 Acura RL. I was convinced that we were going to bring an MDX into the fold to replace our Land Cruiser which my wife drove primarily. Alas, my wife nixed it because she didn't like the grain of the wood trim. Yeah I know, and we almost didn't get our X5 because the original one we saw had the Zebrano wood trim which she liked, but it sold. Ours has the bur wood and it was up in the air until she saw it in person on whether we would get it. Back on point, I am partial to Acuras. They offer tremendous value, are sporty, understated and have served me well. I am currently trying to talk my sister into an RDX. I do think they have lost their way a bit in styling, especially with the beak, but if they can reign in their designers, I think the next MDX will be a winner.

Infiniti QX - Old school monster SUV. More of a niche vehicle, but there is still a market for them. I've never been a big fan of Infiniti styling, but that's me.

Lexus RX - hey, it's a Lexus, right? Will be a nice, luxurious vehicle, but I doubt that the RX will make Lexus synonymous with "fun to drive".

Merc - will continue to compete with the X5 for those who lean more towards the luxury side of the luxury/performance SUV market.

NoI4plz 12-27-2012 10:16 PM

Update:


Sorry to confuse all who are reading my original post. For the Infiniti, I was using their new naming scheme which renames their current JX60 into the QX60. Sorry for the confusion.

GoHawks63 12-27-2012 10:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NoI4plz (Post 7274812)
Update:


Sorry to confuse all who are reading my original post. For the Infiniti, I was using their new naming scheme which renames their current JX60 into the QX60. Sorry for the confusion.

The JX is just a gussied up Pathfinder that has received less than glowing reviews for being boring.It offers neither off-road, or on-road performance. It's just a wagon. Read what I said above abut the RX, and the same applies here.

henrycyao 12-27-2012 10:22 PM

I am quite interested to see the 2014 Acura MDX and Audi Q7.

Audi:

All their recent line up seem to compete quite well against BMW. The current generation Q7 just can't keep pace with BMW X5. I am hoping the next version changes that and we are talking about some real competition instead of BMW X5 vs. Porsch Cayenne.

Acura:

I did not like the directly they gone with RDX. I am curious as other has pointed out if MDX will use their hybrid based SH-AWD. That would be a major plus in my book.

Vex500 12-28-2012 01:32 AM

The Infinity brand has just been launched here in Australia and I believe they are the upmarket derivative of Nissan, as Lexus is to Toyota. Are these popular in the US? They look pretty smart!

GoHawks63 12-28-2012 05:26 AM

Acura was the first to enter the US market in the late '80s. Lexus and Infinii joined shortly thereafter.

roy528 12-28-2012 06:10 AM

While I believe that Acura is usually the 'value' leader in this class
and gives you a very solid well thought out vehicle without price gouging,
I just cannot get past that 'beak'. I would almost be embarrassed to
get into that car . Otherwise I would put it in the 'to be seriously considered' column.

GoHawks63 12-28-2012 07:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by roy528 (Post 7275058)
While I believe that Acura is usually the 'value' leader in this class
and gives you a very solid well thought out vehicle without price gouging,
I just cannot get past that 'beak'. I would almost be embarrassed to
get into that car . Otherwise I would put it in the 'to be seriously considered' column.

I completely agree with you. If you look at the latest iterations of the TL and the ILX, you'll see that the they have begun to soften that garish front end.

They also seem to have taken a step back on some of the plastics in their interiors. While I know the Civic isn't from Honda's premium brand, look at the criticism it has received from the automotive press. it was once almost above reproach. That has found it's way to some of the Acura models as well.

UncleJ 12-28-2012 08:29 AM

All are worthy contenders. Also coming up will be the new diesel powered Jeep Grand Cherokee (which rides on the ML platform -- thanks to MB owning Jeep when the new JGC was being penned) as well as a more capable Caddie SRX, and rather interesting Lincoln MKT. There are, as I like to point out, lots of choices out there now folks and you do yourself a disservice by not at least checking them out before you plunk down your coin on something. Now I know that there are those that will say "these are a bunch of crap etc." and that may well have been true in years' past -- however that was then and this is now. All the marques have made great strides in their reliability and build quality -- even Land Rover (though perhaps not as great as the others) -- so its really a new game out there now. Good luck and enjoy the ride!:angel:

onebadgix 12-28-2012 09:40 AM

I really like the new Cayennes. Im surprised that the Escalade was not on your list.

roy528 12-28-2012 09:44 AM

The Cayennes are great - but..
They have virtually no cargo capacity. The Front is Beautiful - however the rest
of the vehicle looks like a drab -devoid of any style- plain-mobile.
The interior is stunning. Performance fabulous. However,the pricing of this vehicle gets
very crazy very quickly. It is not for the feint of heart ( or wallet)

ND40oz 12-28-2012 10:08 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NoI4plz (Post 7274812)
Update:


Sorry to confuse all who are reading my original post. For the Infiniti, I was using their new naming scheme which renames their current JX60 into the QX60. Sorry for the confusion.

Isn't it the JX35, basically Infiniti's version of the new Path(mall)finder? The CVT just kills that vehicle, but the interior layout is great.

The QX56 is the big thing that looks like a Pathfinder Armada and a Buick mated, not a crossover but still a body on frame SUV.

I'm waiting to see what Acura does with the MDX, I had an 07 but they haven't done anything since then except give it a beak. I saw them testing it last month and didn't seem to have much pep, at least it couldn't keep up with the X5. Hard to get photos at night doing 80, excuse the blur.

http://i79.photobucket.com/albums/j1...z/DSC05546.jpg

onebadgix 12-28-2012 12:14 PM

I agree on all counts, especially the interior and pricing. :thumbup:

And forget my earlier comment about the Escalade, didn't notice the OP said crossover vehicle.

Quote:

Originally Posted by roy528 (Post 7275464)
The Cayennes are great - but..
They have virtually no cargo capacity. The Front is Beautiful - however the rest
of the vehicle looks like a drab -devoid of any style- plain-mobile.
The interior is stunning. Performance fabulous. However,the pricing of this vehicle gets
very crazy very quickly. It is not for the feint of heart ( or wallet)


UncleJ 12-29-2012 07:19 AM

I also forgot the Buick Enclave and the stablemate GMC Denali Acadia -- both very capable three rowers with usable back seats.:D

tonka858 12-29-2012 10:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vex500 (Post 7274943)
The Infinity brand has just been launched here in Australia and I believe they are the upmarket derivative of Nissan, as Lexus is to Toyota. Are these popular in the US? They look pretty smart!

they are the exact same car just nicer stickers and shinny chrome.

tonka858 12-29-2012 10:02 AM

PORSCHE CAYENNE

only one of those even close is the ML, Drive the Porsche first and make sure to drive the S so it has the V8

Chucktown 12-29-2012 10:10 AM

I have not driven the GL, MDX, or any Infiniti. These are the rest of my thoughts.

The Lexus RX is crap. C R A P.

The Q7 and X5 updates haven't been released, so we don't have specs. So I'll base my opinion on the MY2013...

The cayenne is the best performer, but lacks capacity. The Q7 is the biggest, but lacks performance. The X5 is a nice blend of both. They are all beautiful cars in their own right. I think it really just boils down to what is most important to you.

AutoUnion 12-29-2012 10:55 AM

Acura and Infiniti don't deserve to be in the poll. Guided up Hondas and Nissans. Even the RX is borderline.

That being said, I'm waiting for the next gen X5 and Q7 to land. If I don't like what I see, there is only one badge left to try, Porsche.

It will drive the best of the bunch and have the highest quality. Whatever extra money paid for the badge is worth it IMO

AutoUnion 12-29-2012 10:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chucktown (Post 7277411)
I have not driven the GL, MDX, or any Infiniti. These are the rest of my thoughts.

The Lexus RX is crap. C R A P.

The Q7 and X5 updates haven't been released, so we don't have specs. So I'll base my opinion on the MY2013...

The cayenne is the best performer, but lacks capacity. The Q7 is the biggest, but lacks performance. The X5 is a nice blend of both. They are all beautiful cars in their own right. I think it really just boils down to what is most important to you.

The RX isn't crap. It is good for what it is. There's a reason they sell so many year after year. The X5 wouldn't exist if the Lexus didn't come around.

The RX sells on value, just like the MDX and JX.

NoI4plz 12-29-2012 10:33 PM

U1
 
Update 1:

So far the top 3 choices picked by the Fest has been

1) BMW X5
2) Porsche Cayenne
3) Acura MDX

Based on BMW's current powertrain portofolio, the predictions for the X5 are: N55, N67, N63. So we can somewhat conclude that the X5 will offer only petroleum based engine offerings.

However currently the Cayenne (T-egg) offers a hybrid system, and it is expected the MDX should launch with a hybrid SH-AWD system, similar to that of the RLX.

If you have tested the AUDI hybrid systems, how do they currently weight in. Has Porsche's translated into driving perfection with the hybrid system?

Do you expect the SH-AWD hybrid to perform equally or almost equally to the Audi group system

;)

AutoUnion 12-30-2012 05:13 AM

^ why would the X5 only offer petrol based engines? The diesel is coming and the dealers already know this. There would be a large number of pissed owners here and on xoutpost if no diesel came of the next gen.


And we don't know much about the SH-AWD hybrid system yet. Audi has a similar system in the works also. Comparing the Treg hybrids system to Acuras upcoming system is poor.

And there are no current Audi hybrids, except the upcoming Q5 and A8 hybrids. Again, the hybrids are pretty useless with diesels going into every model of the Audi lineup soon.

GoHawks63 12-30-2012 08:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AutoUnion (Post 7277499)
Acura and Infiniti don't deserve to be in the poll. Guided up Hondas and Nissans. Even the RX is borderline.

I disagree on the MDX. It is a solid vehicle that provides good performance while offering a ton of features. BMW could learn a lesson or two from that vehicle with resepct to reliability.

Quote:

Originally Posted by AutoUnion (Post 7277499)
And we don't know much about the SH-AWD hybrid system yet. Audi has a similar system in the works also. Comparing the Treg hybrids system to Acuras upcoming system is poor.


The following is specific to the RLX, and I assume the MDX will be similar if not identical.

The all-wheel-drive RLX forgoes the rear-wheel steering and instead employs what Acura calls Sport Hybrid Super Handling All-Wheel Drive. This new version of SH-AWD uses two 27-hp electric motors at the rear wheels instead of a driveshaft and clutch packs. The 3.5-liter V-6 still is present under the hood, but paired to a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic with an integrated 40-hp motor that also acts as a generator. Peak total system power is about 370 hp, but the car feels stronger thanks to the instantaneous torque of the electric motors, which assist propulsion up to 75 mph. The rear motors also provide torque vectoring in corners, putting resistance on the inside wheel (which generates electricity for instantaneous use, lessening the draw on the 6.7-kWh battery) and driving the outside wheel to minimize understeer. Track performance is impressive, with instantaneous turn-in and grip that seems to transcend the abilities of the Michelin Pilot Sport 3 tires. We didn't have the chance to mess around too much, but there is no power oversteer. Jam on the gas and the car simply follows exactly where you point it with a neutral attitude.

There are other benefits to the system, as well. Not counting the batteries, the rear motors weigh less than the driveshaft and clutches in the mechanical SH-AWD system. Those motors, which can provide silent EV-style propulsion at low speeds have the side benefit of smoothing out the engagement of the dual-clutch transmission when pulling away from a stop. And the hybrid system helps fuel economy-we estimate EPA figures of around 30 in both city and highway driving, a big jump from the current RL's 17/24 sticker.

Our brief preview has us eager to drive the full-production RLX, even if we're not too excited to spend any time gazing at the, um, polarizing design. While the front-wheel-drive version offers interesting new technology with the all-wheel steering, we're enthusiastic about the Sport Hybrid SH-AWD, a far more revolutionary concept in terms of performance. Stay tuned.

....
http://stwot.motortrend.com/files/20...r-Diagram2.jpg

New 2014 Acura RLX DriveTrains Aim for Smiles

When my colleagues learned I would be interviewing Takanobu Ito, Honda's CEO and former engineer, most of their questions were some variation of, "When will Honda make a fun car again?"

Honda appears to have taken notice of such criticism, because before we got behind the wheel of a 2014 Acura RLX development mule, the automaker's pre-drive presentations were full of big, bold examples of "FUN." This being contemporary Honda, though, "ENVIRONMENT" and "SAFETY" weren't far behind. The 2013 Honda Accord sedan is capable enough when it comes to safety and efficiency, but the car placed 2nd out of 6 cars in a recent comparison because it wasn't as fun to drive as our 1st-place finisher. So does the Acura RLX bring the fun back to the Acura lineup?

Yes. Well, mostly yes. With the same basic drivetrain approach as the radical new NSX dubbed "Sport Hybrid All Wheel Drive" the top-of-the-line RLX is fun, based on our time driving a development mule. Whereas the NSX uses 2 unique motors to send power to the front wheels and a Hybrid V-6 to motivate the rear wheels, the RLX's flips the system, with the fronts powered by a direct-injected 3.5-liter V-6 coupled to a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission with a built-in electric motor, and the rears by 2 individual electric motors that send instant torque to the outside wheel while regenerating (slowing down) the inside wheel. Think of the brake-steer system on a McLaren 12C and you're halfway there.

http://stwot.motortrend.com/files/20...sitioning2.jpg

The system doesn't quite deliver the "on-rails" driving experience promised in the briefing, but it does perform some neat tricks. On the short course provided for evaluation, it was easy to push the RLX mule into a corner with understeer, let off the brakes to induce oversteer, and then feel the 2 motors work their magic and wiggle the butt back in line. Sport Hybrid SH-AWD (not to be confused with normal SH-AWD) is actually what Acura thinks will be the less popular of the 2 drivetrains offered when the RLX hits showrooms; the less expensive and less tech-heavy front-drive variant will be the volume RLX, which is powered by a 310-hp 3.5-liter V-6 and debuts at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show.

After driving the Sport Hybrid SH-AWD RLX and then the front-drive version, I walked away just as impressed with the base 2014 RLX mule, thanks to its new Precision All Wheel Steer system. Various forms of all-wheel steering have been around for some time; Nissan had it on the GT-R in 1986 and even Honda offered it on the Prelude starting in 1987. While Acura's new system does all the old tricks rear wheels mimicking the fronts during lane changes for high-speed stability, and aiming opposite the fronts for a hard corner to increase handling prowess it offers a few new moves as well. For example, the precision actuators positioned in the toe control link use an electric extending and retracting arm to achieve an industry 1st "toe-in" position, which improves stability under hard braking.

Maybe it's because I usually have a pessimistic approach to front-drive cars and their natural tendency to understeer, but I was pleasantly surprised with the PAWS' aptitude around the handling course. The PAWS car, which felt like it was pushing around less weight up front, actually carries a higher percentage of its curb weight over the front wheels compared to the SH-AWD car. Bottom line: the system works. So for those who won't be willing to spend the premium on the Sport Hybrid SH-AWD RLX, the front-drive version with PAWS will have little trouble prompting smiles from enthusiasts.

http://stwot.motortrend.com/files/20...-Formation.jpg

If the production RLX Sport Hybrid SH-AWD really returns the "dynamic performance equivalent to a V-8 with higher fuel efficiency than an in-line 4" as Acura says it will, then the brand's upcoming flagship sedan will not only be an impressive handler, but also a drag strip and fuel economy champ. Based on our short and very early drive in Japan, it's too early to validate those facts just yet, but we're happy to report Acura's on the right track. Systems such as Sport Hybrid SH-AWD and PAWS are steps in the right direction for heightening the fun factor. Perhaps the biggest takeaway from our time in the RLX is knowing that the next NSX, which will get a more potent version of Sport Hybrid SH-AWD, could very well take the fun factor off the charts.




A bit more than a gussied up Honda.

Let me know if you need more information. :p

Golfster 12-30-2012 08:08 AM

I've had very good luck with my Cayenne S, and would buy another if I were to buy another SUV.

AutoUnion 12-30-2012 08:11 AM

^yes, I've read everything about the RLX. We don't know for sure what's going to be in the MDX yet


It's not BMW, it's the owners. We have been accustomed to owning the cutting edge. Unlike Acura owners, BMW can't just pawn off old technology, like a decade old J series V6 and expect it to sell, while being based off an Accord. Just doesn't work like that. If we want new tech, we have to give up some reliability to do so. Once Acura starts together off their high horse and realizes the whole brand is a joke, they'll get around to innovating, instead of falling helplessly behind.

The MDX is a decent car for the price. Perfect for budget luxury seekers. It has a terrible interior and the engine is outdated. Let's not forget the pathetic fuel economy. And I'm speaking from experience. A relative has one and I've driven it so many times.


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