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Discussion Starter #1
One emoticon sums it up....


I give up. Its really bad. The taurus has some edge to it. The 500 though....ohhhh the 500. I swear this was the car I was waiting for where ford was supposed to try and rival the accord, the TL, the maxima, the altima...what does ford do? they mix a passat with a crown victoria. It looks like a car for seniors


My best friend warned me that I would be disappointed. I didnt listen. Even though I had seen the pictures, I still figured i'd love it....its not good. not at all. I am now convinced that ford only wants to make money on SUVs and Trucks. Oh well. Most likely my next car wont be a ford.

The new mustang looks awesome and is the first "manly" looking stang in ages although it doesnt look as cool as the concept car. The GT though....OH....MY....GOD. The day i see one on the streets i may faint. I'm telling you. The GT will have more shock value on the street than a ferrari, a masarati. a viper or a lambo guaranteed.

I'm going back on saturday and will take pics.
 

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The Five-Hundred probably has more presence than the VW Pheaton. I saw a Pheaton in the LA Auto Show and it didn't strike me a bit like a ultra-lux $80k VW should. I guess jellybean cars aren't that fashionable anymore.
 
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When did it show up at the la auto show? I was there on friday and didn't see it. To me it looks like a LS430 crossed with a vw and produced that
The engine may be under powered for a car that size (DuraTEC 30) but it has a 6 speed automatic which should make up for that.
 

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it had to have been there. its a pretty big display. it really isnt noticable is probably the reason you didnt see it. its on the other side of the hydrogen powered focus and across the aisle from the mazda 3s and 6s. I swear there were only older people looking at it. the cooler looking(in pictures anyway...i wont be tricked twice)mercury version wasnt there.
 

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The Mercury doesn't look like it comes with a free set of false teeth like the 500 does, but it's not much better... same old design. I was not impressed in the first place and I am still not...looks like Ford is playing catch up yet again...
 

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I'm curious, what are the other makes and models that you guys are comparing the 500 to? Which vehicles represent the "standard" that Ford failed to meet with the 500?
 

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I'd buy a Maxima or TL faster than a 500 in a heartbeat. If I was in the market for something boring like an Avalon, the Avalon would win out because of its already established reputation (people in this market don't want something new or exciting).
 

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Originally posted by rockledge@Jan 7 2004, 10:39 PM
I'm curious, what are the other makes and models that you guys are comparing the 500 to? Which vehicles represent the "standard" that Ford failed to meet with the 500?
the "standard" of having a REAL sports sedan. not some grandpa car that doesnt even look cool. ford has a real image problem in its sedan area IMO and they are doing NOTHING to address it. I almost know for a fact that they think "oh we make enough on the f150 and SUVs anyway so who cares" They may as well just not even bother.

yeah theres mazda and jaguar and volvo but i want a true ford. BTW, I LOVED the new acura TL at the car show! OMG! Most likely that WILL be my next car. either that or the souped up lighting blue volvo s60(i think that was it)that was at the show.
 
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Originally posted by Twilight@Jan 7 2004, 08:04 PM
I'd buy a Maxima or TL faster than a 500 in a heartbeat. If I was in the market for something boring like an Avalon, the Avalon would win out because of its already established reputation (people in this market don't want something new or exciting).
 

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So your feeling is that the Maxima looks "cooler' than the 500? IMHO, the Maxima doesn't even look as nice as the current Gen IV Taurus.
And I'm no Grandpa.


Maybe it's because of where I live, but almost every Maxima I see is riced-out to the hilt anyway.


Looks are so much a matter of personal preference that it's really not a subject that lends itself well to debate. And admittedly it's only one factor to consider, albeit an important one. For example, I personally think the Gen III Taurus can't hold a candle looks-wise to the earlier generations of Taurii. But that doesn't stop me from owning and driving a Gen III. So I won't dismiss an automobile simply because I don't think it looks as nice as another one.
 

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What you guys need to remember is that the 500 is not the only replacement for the Taurus. The Futura, which is going to be built alonside the Mazda 6 is part of the plan to phase out the taurus also. What you guys need to realize is that the reason the taurus has fallen behind is because it is marketed to two different people at the same time. The old people like the cushy ride and easy to use interior appointments, while some younger people appreciate it's value and decent sporting nature for a family sedan. The problem is that you will always have a compromise when trying to sell to two different genre's like that. The 500 will take care of the older crowd with it's decent standard 200hp, refined transmissions, modest exterior designs,and excellent interior appointments. On the other hand look for the Futura to have a manual tranny available with the V6, sportier handling & styling, and a lower base price.

The 500 represents an alternative to the Camry, Avalon, and possibly ES330. I doubt too many Maxma prospective buyers will cross-shop it and definitely no TL buyers will. Those are truley sort sedans that have high hp V6's & available manual trannies. The job of fighting import sport sedans goes to the Lincoln LS, which to be honest is falling behind by alot recently. The Futura will (hopefully) challenge the Accord, Altima, & Galant for the mid priced sporty faily sedan title.
 

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Joe, you make a good point and that may well have been Ford's strategy. What throws a monkey wrench into the mix, however, is the Crosstrainer. aka the Ford Aztek. It's based on the Five Hundred platform, and is basically a conversion station wagon/pickup Baja thing/whatever. This is obviously yet another sad attempt to attract the young crowd (how many kids do you see driving Azteks?) just like the Vibe/Matrix. The only purpose these stupid crossovers serve is to allow a higher seating position so old folks can get in and out the car without bending down. And the whole idea of a conversion vehicle is straight out of my grandpa's cookbook. What's next, offering cars with periscopes so they can see over all the SUVs?


I give up on all carmakers. They have no clue.
 

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500 doesn't seem that boring to me. I certainly don't see AWD or a 6-speed auto in the Maxima either. Why don't we wait for the 500 to come out and drive it? I can almost guarantee you that the 500 will be more competitive with the Maxima than you think. At least the 500 doesn't have those ugly clear tails.
 

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Originally posted by Majisto@Jan 10 2004, 01:27 AM
500 doesn't seem that boring to me. I certainly don't see AWD or a 6-speed auto in the Maxima either. Why don't we wait for the 500 to come out and drive it? I can almost guarantee you that the 500 will be more competitive with the Maxima than you think. At least the 500 doesn't have those ugly clear tails.
The Max has something even better: a 6 speed MANUAL!


Even the Crown Vic coulda been more sporty than this thing.
 

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Honestly I couldnt care less if the 500 flops like Denny's pancake. They still make the Mustang and it is better than ever, so I'm happy.

And comparing the Aztec to the CrossTrainer isnt accurate. The CrossTrainer is basically a better Taurus wagon, and thats about it. The Aztec is ugly, plain & simple the CrossTrainer is not. Realize Alex that 90% of people couldnt give a flying s***e whether or not a car/suv is "sporty". Look at the quality of materials used & the drivetrains, much improved over the current variants, which is where Ford really needs to go.
 

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Originally posted by Twilight+Jan 10 2004, 01:29 AM-->QUOTE (Twilight @ Jan 10 2004, 01:29 AM)
<!--QuoteBegin-Majisto
@Jan 10 2004, 01:27 AM
500 doesn't seem that boring to me.  I certainly don't see AWD or a 6-speed auto in the Maxima either.  Why don't we wait for the 500 to come out and drive it?  I can almost guarantee you that the 500 will be more competitive with the Maxima than you think.  At least the 500 doesn't have those ugly clear tails.
The Max has something even better: a 6 speed MANUAL!


Even the Crown Vic coulda been more sporty than this thing. [/b]
And how many people buy a Maxima with a 6-speed? Nissan will most likely drop the manual since maybe 5% of Maximas are equipped with one (And much less actually are sold). I imagine the Altima will take it up, the way it should be. Maxima should be auto only, and the sportier Altima should have the manual option. Nissan is being ridiculous with how they are treating the Max and Alt. I think finally they are realizing the two cars should be different just like they were before the 5th generation designs.

As well, Maxima still doesn't have AWD. You drive that FWD torquey beast up north and tell me how you like it. I could barely drive it down here in Texas on dry smooth ground. With the efficiency of today's systems, I see no real reason to get FWD over AWD. Personally, I like a limited slip RWD vehicle the best, but front-wheel is a silly idea. Nissan again was dumb in not making either the Maxima or Altima rear-drive or at least give one an all-wheel drive option. They will soon.
 

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I disagree.That would kill the Maxima because who would buy a awd Maxima for ~$30k when you could get a G35 AWD for a grand or two more?
 

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Originally posted by jtkz13@Jan 12 2004, 09:22 AM
I disagree.That would kill the Maxima because who would buy a awd Maxima for ~$30k when you could get a G35 AWD for a grand or two more?
The G35 has AWD now? Well that's good to know. Even so, remember the 500 will be under $30,000 so Nissan may need to re-think the Maxima a bit. If this is true, why buy a Maxima? You can get the sportier, same sized Altima for cheaper, or get the slightly more expensive Infiniti which has rear or all wheel drive, and bears the nice Infiniti badge.
 

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It still is standard with rwd, but you can get the G35X which is part-time awd. It only ditributes power to the front wheels when the rears are slipping. So its still a rear-bias sports sedan, but now it can go in the snow.
I test drove a G35 coupe when they first came out and I was very impressed. if I didnt already have a rwd coupe I'd be driving that right now.

As for the Maxima it is for sure between cars that are better in many ways than it is. The Altima looks much better, has similar power, and has a decent quality record. It however has a much lower grade interior, has only a 4 speed automatic, and does not have a HLSD like the 6 speed Maxima does. You can get a moderately equipped Altima for $22-25k depending on options. Fully loaded it stickers for $28k. The G35 is the other side of the problem. It has a much nicer interior than the Max, has more power, better dealership practices, much much better exterior looks, better warranty, better handling, and the list goes on & on. The ony thing is that it is rwd & costs a couple grand more than a fully loaded Max. It's still not extremely expensive because the options list is pretty short.

The Max ranges from $27-29k and the G35 goes from $28k-$32k for the awd model.
 
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