Gecko

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This is the irritating thing though, they can't just build a total disappointment and then blame poor sales on shift to SUVs. This is like the garbage where they've killed the CT citing poor sales - you didn't update the thing in what, a decade? It was pathetic next to the Germans in the same segment. So no wonder the UX had vastly better sales with the up to date interior design language and exterior design cues.

If they built the LS people actually wanted, a traditional 3 box design that looked like the LF-FC with a V8, don't tell me that wouldn't have sold 5x more than what the disappointment we got is selling.
"Build an underwhelming/uncompetitive _____, but blame it's lack of success on ____(external force)___," is a game Lexus likes to play quite frequently.

But with that said, I really do feel that the tides are turning and there is a new era starting at Lexus. I am fairly optimistic.
 

Ian Schmidt

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There's no place left where people buy a traditional luxury limousine that's not a S-Class. The 7-series and A8 might as well be dead too.
Yes. That segment basically *is* the S-Class. Barring Mercedes doing something really dumb they own the segment. (I personally consider the new S-Class to be "something really dumb", but I'm going to guess buyers won't).

As an LS driver I'd be more than happy if the 6LS was the LF-1 or something like it. I'm definitely interested in the taller body style, but I also don't want BOF.
 
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I wouldn't be surprised if the LS did change into an SUV. Apparently, Toyota is thinking about converting the Crown sedan into their Flagship SUV.

Another point you mention with the ES is spot on. The ES keeps growing and keeps adding features that were once reserved for the LS I had an ES demo while my GS was being serviced. The styling, features, and comfort are too similar which is probably why LS sales are not where they should be. A quick glance made me believe the ES is the LS. Why pay 2x more if I can get something that looks like an LS, has the same feature as the LS, and comfort close to an LS? I wouldn't. Most non-car people jumping into a luxury car won't care if it FWD, RWD, AWD. As long as they see a Luxury badge on the front and rear, that is all that matters to them. If Lexus kills the LS (IF, I'm not saying that they should.) I don't think anyone would miss it, unless you're an existing\future LS owner or someone that admires the LS. I don't think any non-car folks miss the GS.

The ES needs to shrink in size. It already ate the GS for lunch. Now it's going after the LS.
 
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But alas times have changed. All I hear from friends and clients is Q8 or X7 etc etc.

We cannot keep the RS Q8 in stock at my dealership, it's really a beast! The X6M is a better vehicle though.
How about the RS6 Avant? Hard to find without a markup.
 
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This is pretty much what they have already done with the 5LS and it didn’t work. Not sure they will go the same route again.
That's exactly my point. How many Grancoupes, A7 and GT4s sell in comparison to 5 series, A6s and E classes? Very very few but they are there not to fatten the revenue of BMW, Audi or MB but to serve as the sexy billboard to cast reflected glory on the volume sellers.

Same for the upcoming LS. The 4 door coupe LS will serve as the sexy cover girl while tweener IS and ES act as the volume seller. Research and development costs will be amortized across several line-ups but with the common GA-L platform : LC, LS and future uber Lexus SUV so the LS not selling well still will mean the GA-L platform remains overall profitable. This way, the beauty of this strategy means LS doesn't even need to sell well for Lexus to make money overall from the GA-L platform.
 
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maiaramdan

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That's exactly my point. How many Grancoupes, A7 and GT4s sell in comparison to 5 series, A6s and E classes? Very very few but they are there not to fatten to revenue of BMW, Audi or MB but to serve as the sexy billboard to cast reflected glory on the volume sellers.

Same for the upcoming LS. The 4 door coupe LS will serve as the sexy cover girl while tweener IS and ES act as the volume seller. Research and development costs will be amortized across several line-ups but with the common GA-L platform : LC, LS and future uber Lexus SUV so the LS not selling well still will mean the GA-L platform remains overall profitable. This way, the beauty of this strategy means LS doesn't even need to sell well for Lexus to make money overall from the GA-L platform.
Exactly, adding Crown and Century with their both sedan and CUVs so you have many cars with only one platform GA-L can be a wildcard
 

Gecko

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I see the strategy you are referring to now... making it more dramatic, sportier, and even less mainstream. The only problem will be Lexus justifying the business case for such a vehicle. An LS that sells 1k units a month across the globe would not be worth the cost for Lexus to produce it, no matter if it shared a platform - unless Lexus has some miraculous about face and is suddenly ok with such low volume vehicles that will show up on the balance sheet as a loss.

However, I will never turn down the idea of a Lexus four door coupe, so if that happened, I would be very happy.
 

Will1991

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@Gecko, don't forget the most expensive production Lexus, LM for China... It checks almost all the boxes you say as expensive, low volume...
I'm not saying it's easy to find this market niches, but it's not unheard from Lexus...

And now we can also realize something, Lexus has been preparing for a long time for this moment.

We've had discussions and question about what happened to the LF-1 concept... We wondered about what it was called, firstly LQ (A Toyota BEV), LF (as in Lexus Flagship), LBX (yet to be known but perhaps the teased concept)... We went ballistic (I did at least as I love current LS) when some rumors talked about Lexus turning to just 2 sedans (IS and ES)....

We can also say, but the ES hasn't got enough power... And Direct4 is coming...
Space? ES is currently more spacious....
Luxury? How many costumers will Lexus really loose for not having luxury sedan? How many current LS owners will not get into a LF-1?

And now it's starting to make sense (almost all of Lexus sales comes from SUV's)... And I can't argue with Lexus logic...

If this is true, Lexus may have been preparing this moment from day 1 in GA-K development (to allow such a big car as the ES, and make it more spacious than the LS).

Perhaps, LF-1 will just be named LS, and keep the moniker as the Lexus flagship!
 
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James

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But alas times have changed. All I hear from friends and clients is Q8 or X7 etc etc.

We cannot keep the RS Q8 in stock at my dealership, it's really a beast! The X6M is a better vehicle though.
Ah so that's why when I emailed Audi about SQ8 and RSQ8 and they gave me some ridiculous price IMO for them...
 

Berto3818

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I definitely welcome this. If they aren’t willing to make. The LS the sedan better then the sclass then it’s time to do this. The LS needs to be bigger and more power. I haven’t brought mine yet snd now going to wait to see if they change it . I hope it is the LF-1 or the LF-FC concept.
 

ssun30

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@Gecko, don't forget the most expensive production Lexus, LM for China... It checks almost all the boxes you say as expensive, low volume...
The difference is that LM is super cheap to manufacture as it shares production line with a $40k base Alphard with a powertrain from last-gen RAV4 hybrid, with no R&D cost. Then they sell it at $230k (MSRP, no markup) so it is the world's most profitable car model, period. It is free money for Lexus. LS on the other hand, is low volume, requires a dedicated line, with hand-built interior, uses a (for now) unique powertrain, and sold at a discount. It's a very low margin (probably even unprofitable if we count R&D) product for Lexus.

The LM is expensive and rare not because it's hard or expensive to make, but because Toyota now sells 10k RHD Alphards a month in JDM. Alphard has basically killed the entire premium sedan market in Japan and has a monopoly in the large van market. There is very little capacity left for the LHD LM. Keeping the LM rare also justifies the extreme markup, which Lexus uses as an incentive for well-performing dealers.
 

Sulu

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I hope that the LS does not become a crossover. Whenever I hear or see "luxury crossover", I cannot help but picture those, "must-jump-on-the-bandwagon" luxury crossover SUVs, the blocky, ungainly (badly-proportioned) Bentley Bentayga and Rolls-Royce Cullinan.

Call me old-fashioned, but in my opinion, a luxury flagship is a large 4-door sedan. There may be more expensive models in the luxury automaker's lineup (maybe even a more expensive, larger SUV) but the flagship is a sedan that has presence, a car that is both majestic and graceful. The flagship sedan does not have to sell well -- a high-selling flagship is perhaps a contradiction in terms -- but it has to be a large sedan that represents the brand.

I have admired many generations of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class because they have -- to me -- embodied cars that were both majestic yet graceful, and true luxury flagship sedans. The S-Class sedan is the flagship and when you think of "Mercedes-Benz" you think of the S-Class.

The earlier generations of the Lexus LS, I believe, were majestic and graceful, because they mimicked S-Class styling cues. The current generation of the LS, in becoming more Japanese, has lost those derivative S-Class cues, and while graceful, has lost some majesty, in my opinion.

When people think of "Lexus", they think of the large, majestic yet graceful, large LS, the Lexus flagship.
 

yiantony

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It's called the LC.

Unless you mean one of those BMW abominations, in which case I would respectfully disagree and wish harm upon anyone who mentions the idea.
I like the Audi sport back series as well as BMW 6 and 8. I would definitely be more interested in a 4 door LC because LC is a bit small and LS looks too business and traditional to me. It would be a pity if the market is large enough and Lexus chooses not to pursue it.
 

Motor

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A little off topic, but was Mitsubishi the first to transition one of their cars into a crossover? Eclipse to Eclipse Cross.
 

Berto3818

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Will this be named the LS600 or something else? It’s kind of strange that this has been in the pipeline or concept since 18 and nothing else has come out. When is the current LS due for a remake?

R,

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