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Old 28th July 2011, 11:02   #1
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Default ML350 or VW Phaeton?

I am going to buy a vehicle within the 60-70L budget where i have lined up the ML350 and the VW Phaeton. Also, am considering the Range Rover Sport and the Toyota Land Cruiser Prado VX

Aspects that set me thinking to select the above two:

Benz has good reliability, excellent service back up in my city and the fuel option of diesel set me thinking.

As for Phaeton, the idea of a sedan with multiple features did set me off. Discount offered at the moment seemed good and also, the fuel efficiency was comparatively better than others in the segment.

Turnoffs for the same:

Low fuel mileage for ML350 and resale value.

As for Phaeton, Doubtful After Sales Service due to the low frequency of sales and usage of the same

Reasons to consider the Range Rover & Land Cruiser:

LC has excellent service back up, reliability and good resale. Also, very useful for me as i usually go to Ooty every 2 days once.

For RR, having read reviews and taken advice from my cousins in the middle east, i wanted to try my hand for this, though i am scared at the prospect of an extremely low mileage.

I would like yours suggestions please, as by the end of next month one of these should be home.
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Old 28th July 2011, 11:16   #2
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

Hi Varun

I have no clue about this super segment, but I know one thing. Right now VW is offering 25 lakhs discount on the Phaeton. One member in Cochin was even given a offer of "Buy Phaeton, get Beetle free".

All the best!

Cheers!!!
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Old 28th July 2011, 11:25   #3
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

IMO the Toyota LC Prado suits your purpose perfectly. Its robust and is the perfect tool to ride up the hills and ghat roads. The Toyota badge may not have the snob value of a Merc or a Land Rover, but it is reliable and has good service backup too.

Another option you may want to try is the Volvo XC60. Its feature-packed, good looking and will set you apart from the crowd too. The Phaeton will be too big a car to manoeuvre in the hilly roads of Ooty on regular basis.

Also since you are considering a Range Rover, why not the Land Rover Discovery 4? The Disco has all the necessary tech and you can save some dough too.
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Old 28th July 2011, 11:45   #4
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

I would not suggest phaeton as it was a dud globally. Out of the total volume of 20000 per annum possible from production the sales average was 25000 for 4 years combined. Also the resale value of the car stinks like anything (I dread to think about it after the discount). They tried to do too many things in one car. A face-lift is already in sale in UK and that could be the reason for the massive discount.Eexpertise of the VW dealerships for a hand built cat like phaeton is also doubtful. Unless you happen to buy it from a metro, your car will be the first one they see which for me dosen't sound very good.
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Old 28th July 2011, 11:52   #5
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

Quote:
Originally Posted by //M View Post
Another option you may want to try is the Volvo XC60.
I am sure you meant XC90, AS varunrdas has a budget of 60-70L.

varunrdas-Why dont you consider an X3.?
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Old 28th July 2011, 11:57   #6
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SILVERWOOD View Post
I am sure you meant XC90, AS varunrdas has a budget of 60-70L.

varunrdas-Why dont you consider an X3.?
No I meant the XC60 only. The XC90 is a dud in India so resale wont be good. But the XC60 is quite fresh and is much cheaper too. Since its unlikely to be seen in large numbers like an Audi Q5, so the XC60 would still turn more heads even though its priced at 50 odd lakhs.

But IMO given the requirements, the LC Prado suits the purpose perfectly.
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Old 28th July 2011, 12:04   #7
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SILVERWOOD View Post
I am sure you meant XC90, AS varunrdas has a budget of 60-70L.

varunrdas-Why dont you consider an X3.?
I am sure you mean X5 as his budget is 60-70l.


Varun - In 70l on road, you will not be able to get the Land Cruiser, or the Range Rover Sport, both go close to a crore. The Prado is overpriced IMO.

Again if you are going to be sitting in the back seat forget the Range Rover Sport.

You will not be able to get a fully loaded Q7 or X5 in your budget. You might be able to get a Touareg, but the new Touareg is due to be launched shortly.

Again a new ML will be released next year.

The Phaeton has a 25l discount. Its a great car, but like someone said, you might find it tough to drive up to Ooty. If I remember correctly the road is quite narrow.

The Discover 4 will be a good choice.
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Old 28th July 2011, 13:10   #8
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 999 View Post
I would not suggest phaeton as it was a dud globally. Out of the total volume of 20000 per annum possible from production the sales average was 25000 for 4 years combined. Also the resale value of the car stinks like anything (I dread to think about it after the discount). They tried to do too many things in one car. A face-lift is already in sale in UK and that could be the reason for the massive discount.Eexpertise of the VW dealerships for a hand built cat like phaeton is also doubtful. Unless you happen to buy it from a metro, your car will be the first one they see which for me dosen't sound very good.
The major reason for the Phaeton becoming a sales dud, is that nobody wanted a VW over an Audi A8, a 7series or an S-Class. I doubt the sales numbers say that the Phaeton is a bad car.

Personally, if you as me, I would pick a proper sedan over soft roader anyday. And the ML doesnt really have the sort of class that the Merc sedans do.

At this price range a LR Disco is perfect I think. If not my other choices would be a Jag XF or a Porsche Cayenne. Before going to the M-class take a look at both the BMW X5 and the Audi Q7, both in my opinion are better choices.
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Old 28th July 2011, 13:45   #9
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Smile Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

Quote:
Originally Posted by julupani View Post
The major reason for the Phaeton becoming a sales dud, is that nobody wanted a VW over an Audi A8, a 7series or an S-Class. I doubt the sales numbers say that the Phaeton is a bad car.
I thought it was understood . Phaeton is a great car.

Initial development of the Phaeton, given the internal project code VW611, began with Pich giving his engineers a list of ten parameters the car needed to fulfill. Most of these specifications were not made known to the public, but a number of them were told to automotive reporters. One of them was that the Phaeton should be capable of being driven all day at 300 kilometres per hour (186 mph) with an exterior temperature of 50 C (122 F) whilst maintaining the interior temperature at 22 C (72 F).[4] Pich requested this even though the Phaeton's top speed was electronically limited to 250 kilometres per hour (155.3 mph).[5] Another requirement was that the car should possess torsional rigidity of 37,000 Nm/degree.

Source Volkswagen Phaeton - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 28th July 2011, 13:56   #10
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

If you want good after sales service, resale and robustness - go for the LC Prado. Though overpriced its a very nice SUV. Honestly dont have any idea about the mileage it offers.

If you want to consider other options, go for X5 or you can look at a loaded Q5. Base versions of Q7 itself starts at 65L I suppose.
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Old 28th July 2011, 14:22   #11
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

Quote:
Originally Posted by akshay1234 View Post
I am sure you mean X5 as his budget is 60-70l.
My bad,indeed i meant X5.

Looks great in white.
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Old 28th July 2011, 14:35   #12
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

The most Reliable of the lot is the Toyota Prado without Doubt. Resale value being very good, specially for the diesel, the intial high price gets offset, moreover as you will really use the car regularly the diesel economy will also save loads of money.
I know of many Prado users who swear by Her reliability, and can vouch for the same, its a real fill and forget vehicle.
The ride is also the best in the suv category.
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Old 28th July 2011, 14:48   #13
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

@varun, the VW Phaeton at the discounted price, would be very tempting and IMO worth considering, if you want luxury and all the other bells and whistles that come loaded in the car. However, if its going to be driven in and around Ooty, a RR sport or the X5 are the best bet, given the terrain..good luck with your choice.
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Old 28th July 2011, 16:25   #14
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

Thanks for your input guys. Just test drove the new ML 350 Grand edition. I got my hands on the Luxury variant (i was hoping it was the sports variant). The ride was very pleasing and the sturdiness seemed decent considering the amount of pot holes we have at Coimbatore at the moment.

Excellent handling and traction certainly. With the luxury variant, i couldnt see the sunroof which might be a good thing on a sunny day at Ooty. Also, the interior seats are to be different (i didnt mind the hand made leather either on this). Last but not the least, the audio package was a standard MMI which wasn't to my liking, as the Sport variant has a Harmon Kardon System with rear entertainment package.

Now with regards to the VW Phaeton, Unfortunately VW has only 1 demo car down south (for the whole region), hence i was and still am unable to test drive it.

@ajay - Yes they have a buy one phaeton, get a beetle or a Passat (happened once recently) free offer in this dealership here. Otherwise it would be a straight cash discount.

@akshay - I have inquired for the x5, however, am looking for the actual 7 seater version which is a CBU. Am not sure if that is available as they said we could modify one with 2 baby seats behind :P

@//m - havent decided about the volvo xc60 or 90 as a matter of fact. Problem it has is the resale value and the drive, my friend had an xc90 and sold it a couple of months back. I think it was the L5 version if i can recall and he had a torrid time with it, though it looked great. Also, the Volvo presence in Coimbatore is near to non existent. They are just coming up with one, hence wouldnt be able to consider much.

@scooby - Have checked the LC Prado and its on road price is slightly higher than the ML350. Seems a good bet certainly.

Now i am looking forward if i can try to get my hands on a Phaeton to drive and see, else, i think i might just opt for the ML350 or a Land Cruiser Prado since the possibility to try out Land Rover here is difficult (absence of a dealership & failed to revert when i made the enquiry)

Last edited by varunrdas : 28th July 2011 at 16:26. Reason: Spelling Error
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Old 28th July 2011, 18:17   #15
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Default Re: ML350 or VW Phaeton?

For sheer reliability I would say get the Land Cruiser Prado. It is the best you can get at that price for bad roads and hill tracks. The service is good and so is the resale.

Phaeton may be a good car, even excellent, but a CBU has its own problems. The maintenance may be a problem, spares may take a long time coming and repairs may not be upto standard. If WV goes the Skoda way, you will have an expensive piece of steel cooling its heels for weeks at a stretch in case of any problem. At least with Mercedes/BMW you have a large (though expensive) dealer/service network to take care of your vehicle.
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