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Old 8th December 2009, 19:42   #16
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ROLEX (infact Indian sold rolex's have duty & margin built in so may be priced out in the short term but globally you not only recover cost but make tidy appreciation not mentione using it and passing it on) watches always appreciate (Common knowledge outside india, low awareness of this here) and so does real estate lets not confuse them with depreciating assets like cars - Enzo maybe over time still to be seen not sure for inflation adjustment though. Mount blanc pens and 5 star dinners are very very small expenses when compared to dropping 35 & 50 lacs (rather buy jewels on deprciating white elephants like a mercedes benz. Could have been justified at half price and 1/3 the service cost of what it is today. Unfortunately the way cars are priced in India it makes no sense at all

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Old 8th December 2009, 20:12   #17
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IMO, the S class/7 series machines are not just cars. These are part of the "CEO's toolkit". Just like a private business jet. For $40million imagine how many flight tickets you can buy? But there's no comparison there.

You will lose the focus the moment you see them as a commuter vehicle. You cannot appreciate the RD350 or the Palio 1.6 GTX any more.

@cannon, the Rs 3L bill for 20K service is not that much Its only roughly 3% of the cost of the vehicle. The total service cost of my Indica so far stands around Rs 12,000 for 60K kms. That means the service costs of the Indica is 1/3 of that of ahem, the S. (I'd prefer a 7 series though).

But then the parts that I told them to replace since I am a TBHPian, and that shouldn't have been replaced were in Indien hergestellt werden, nicht aus Deutschland importiert.

Just my 2 paise.
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Old 8th December 2009, 22:51   #18
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GTO, Alpha1 & Sandeepmdas, I fully agree with you, if you buy this car for status, then there is no argument here. If you have always dreamed of a Mercedes and you have to have it at any cost, at a time when you think you have finally arrived in life, no argument again. The status and the pleasure derieved of letting people know you have arrived is an intangible and it would be hard to put a price on that intagible.

However, like I said if you are a car enthuiast and you buy a mercedes hoping to enjoy it after paying so much, there is a possibility that you will be dissappointed, just becasue you paid so much and you know at the back of your mind the same car is available for a lot lesser elsewhere in the world.

GTO, a car after a house is usually a persons biggest purchase in their lifetime. To extend this theory and compare it to 7000 @ a 5 star hotel & 15000 for a pen might not be applicable, because they are partly impulsive decisions that one would make without as much thought & research going into that purchase as compared to a 35lac to 1cr Mercedes. Now as far as an Enzo, Bugatti Veyron & the Sheik goes, we are talking about a different set of people with unlimited resources, so again no argument there. If you are going to look at it from the perspective of "Money is no Object" , then anything is justifiable, but then again that would apply to people who had unlimited resources!

When I bought my S550, I talked the dealer into givng me 9K discount thats almost 10%. I'm the kind of guy, no matter how much money I make, the Indian in me always wants a deal no matter what I buy.
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Old 9th December 2009, 12:14   #19
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spot on sandeep my sentiments exactly but the most un Indian thing is happenning in the pricing of these cars and indian who love value for money and good deals are falling suckers!! Which is why bulk of them are bought by either people with dirty money, or inherited, or have massive networths so such that the indulgence is extremely extremely neglible (I reckon people worth US$ 100 mill and above) the rest are either real enthus or the all show and no go variety which I hear is on a very rapid rapid rise so much that people are now coming out in the open and talking about it

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Old 9th December 2009, 15:04   #20
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Guys don't you think this debate is a bit skewed? As in, the points being discussed (value for money in the US versus value for money in India for same/similar products).

Quote:
Originally Posted by sandeepvr View Post
However, like I said if you are a car enthuiast and you buy a mercedes hoping to enjoy it after paying so much, there is a possibility that you will be dissappointed, just becasue you paid so much and you know at the back of your mind the same car is available for a lot lesser elsewhere in the world.
C-, E- and S-Class are not performance cars. Except for the C-Class, you will see very few E- and S-Class owners driving their cars. As far as comfort is concerned, I am sure you will agree that it is "not all that bad" .

Reminds me of a Zippo lighter I bought in the US for $10 (on sale), lost it again bought another one here in India for Rs 1500, 3 times the original price!!!! But I cannot dream of the US of A sitting here in India. I can afford a Zippo at Indian price, I buy it. This logic extrapolates...
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Old 9th December 2009, 21:53   #21
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Canonball, I gather you were in the UK before moving to India, and that explains why our sentiments on this issue are similar. Being outside India and having enjoyed nice cars at a fraction of what it costs in India, we find it hard to digest why someone would pay so much for a Mercedes, but from what I gather from this discussion is that it seems to be more about status rather than buying it for what the car really has to offer.

Gooney, like I told GTO, a zippo lighter is more an impulsive buy, to extrapolate and equate your buying process of a Rs1500 lighter to a 50 lacs Mercedes is not realistic. Buying a Mercedes is almost like buying a small apartment and am sure a lot more thought goes into buying this than a lighter.

As far as people not driving their E & S Class, I dont have numbers and would say you're probably right on that. But then again you're talking about the non-enthusiast who most likely buys it for the status of owning such a car but the enthusiast is defnitely getting short-changed in India.
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Old 10th December 2009, 12:13   #22
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US, Indonesia, and close HK (60% duty :() drove some great cars, did not have the heart to bring them down here. Yes STATUS is a big thing in India albiet common consensis now is that it seems a lot like all show and no depth. Easy credit could be one of the reasons but people in Metros most form middle to neo riche are the one's indulging in this. At times I see car owners living in flats that cost 1/3 the value of the car and they normally talk very very big only in 100 and 1000 corer - gasspots is what we called it in the old days

You are right about usage most are used for so called "Special Occasions" on an average these cars do 5k some cases way less a year (2.5k miles!) so go figure. Ofcourse there are extremes I know folks who are in bus that need extensive road travel (no other option) and those are really justified buys - one guy had done 80K in 1.5 years!! But theses are rare exceptions.

Hope things get better on the pricing and duty front until then one has to contend with occassional breakouts on the autobahn when possible. On the flip side these cars depreciate very well and some the sparingelyy used seconds can be had at a reasonable price and maintained reasonably well if the tech guy is reliable and you know your cars inside out

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Old 10th December 2009, 12:17   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gooney View Post
Guys don't you think this debate is a bit skewed? As in, the points being discussed (value for money in the US versus value for money in India for same/similar products).
, If you sit and compare the prices Of other Countries to what is available here in India, you probably would be a Billionaire as you would be walking to most of the places (cycle is also more expensive then other countries) and end up with a in house dairy and doing farming for fruits and vegtables as well. Cloths i guess you would reluctantly spend on as it is a need more than a want.


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C-, E- and S-Class are not performance cars. Except for the C-Class, you will see very few E- and S-Class owners driving their cars. As far as comfort is concerned, I am sure you will agree that it is "not all that bad" .
I beg to differ here my friend. Take a good look around you will find all the Mercedes in equal numbers on the road irrespective of their designations. I see more S and E classes compared to C classes when i travel. Most of the cars here are not performance orientated. There would be a handfull who take a lambo or 997 Turbo to work. The majority are in their C,E,S, 3,5,7,Bentley FS and the Rolls.

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Originally Posted by Gooney View Post
Reminds me of a Zippo lighter I bought in the US for $10 (on sale), lost it again bought another one here in India for Rs 1500, 3 times the original price!!!! But I cannot dream of the US of A sitting here in India. I can afford a Zippo at Indian price, I buy it. This logic extrapolates...
Now this logic works everywhere with most people. It is not because you are fond of a Zippo or you really use it to its full potential and you definately do not collect them. For you the zippo is a possesion you own and want others to see. A Rs 1 matchbox or Rs 10 or 15 lighter does the same job.
Its more like the people who just want a status symbol with them rather than know its worth or have use enough for it. Its like you mentioned "I can afford a zippo at indian price, i buy it." Do you know the work of the zippo or the components that go into it. The cotton, the wick, the flint that goes into it. The alternate fuel that can be used to light it up if you do not find or have the Zippo fluid available near you. I guess not. Most of the high end owners are in the same boat. Have the money and want the prestige attached with the brands.

I own high end cars but have a use for them and hence knowing i am spending more buy them. None of the cars are for status or for storeing in the garage to make it impressive. My ML which is a year old has clocked 43,000 kms and the BMW which is about a month and a half old has done 3,500 kms. I feel the amount of safety and comfort the imported cars can provide no Indian car comes close to it. You would not call it value for money but look at it like money even though a higher amount but well spent. I own a minimum of 40 zippo's but only the limited edition ones and collector peices bought from all over the world. They currently reside with my cousin in U.K. I still use a Rs1 matchbox or a Rs15 lighter.

No hard feelings brother, but this is reality people tend to forget.
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Old 10th December 2009, 12:33   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandeepmdas View Post
Dubai's Sheik Mohammed paid 2.8 million dollars for a race horse. When he was shown the (original) blueprint of the Burj Dubai tower, his instant reaction was "only 90 stories?"

So they redid the blueprint.

"Men never grow up, they just get bigger
"...
oh yeah ... and they land up in huge debt!
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Old 10th December 2009, 13:52   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speedy View Post
I beg to differ here my friend. Take a good look around you will find all the Mercedes in equal numbers on the road irrespective of their designations. I see more S and E classes compared to C classes when i travel. Most of the cars here are not performance orientated. There would be a handfull who take a lambo or 997 Turbo to work. The majority are in their C,E,S, 3,5,7,Bentley FS and the Rolls.
My point exactly which I was making to Sandeep. The high-end luxury sedan (NOT performance cars) owners focus more on the luxury aspect of their cars when using on a regular basis, quite contrary to this whole debate of paying premium for such cars in India by car enthusiasts who base their buying judgement on performance and not status.

Quote:
It is not because you are fond of a Zippo or you really use it to its full potential and you definately do not collect them.
I am actually quite fond of Zippos Speedy I have not started collectiong them...yet. I prefer having a Zippo to buying n-number of cheap lighters or matchboxes and losing them. More than anything else, I like it because it is old school, not to forget the kicks of filling in the lighter fluid and adjusting the wick, changing the flint and the feeling that it served two world wars

Last edited by Gooney : 10th December 2009 at 13:52. Reason: typo
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Old 10th December 2009, 14:21   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gooney View Post
My point exactly which I was making to Sandeep. The high-end luxury sedan (NOT performance cars) owners focus more on the luxury aspect of their cars when using on a regular basis, quite contrary to this whole debate of paying premium for such cars in India by car enthusiasts who base their buying judgement on performance and not status.
Have to agree. There are a handfull of people who know what they are buying rather than the status it carries. Majority of the people want the status even though they do not fit properly in the car. I know of people who upgraded from a corrola to a C class and do not even fit in the rear seat properly but will not admit it was a right choice made as it is a three pointed star. Just to think you waste 20 odd lakhs over a corrolla to be uncomfortable and have your status that you say i drive or am driven in a Mercedes.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Gooney View Post
I am actually quite fond of Zippos Speedy I have not started collectiong them...yet. I prefer having a Zippo to buying n-number of cheap lighters or matchboxes and losing them. More than anything else, I like it because it is old school, not to forget the kicks of filling in the lighter fluid and adjusting the wick, changing the flint and the feeling that it served two world wars
That is preferance like i mentioned. What i meant to say and just useing the example of the Zippo and not pointing fingers at you or any one in perticular but a general thing noticed. A person if he has the money wants a branded product that carries a status with it even though things with no branding can do the same thing. I prefer loosing the Rs 15 lighter and matchbox than loosing my Zippo's. I have lost and had stolen quite a few of them. New Zippos are modern school. The old school ones are pains to light. I have two bought from the old Army works store in U.k. and used by Officers.

Anyways enough of zippo talk and lets get back to the point here. Thank you
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Old 13th December 2009, 23:47   #27
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I have simple advice.

If the author of this thread comes to India permanently then please do not buy a Mercedes or any other High End Luxury Car.

Let other people decide for themselves.
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Old 14th December 2009, 08:15   #28
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It's pretty inherent in all of us to be a bit of a show off!! ASPIRATION, simple as that! Since you have owned the lot it won't seem too big a deal, but think about the time you first bought them or was driving them. Wasn't that special? Didn't it give you a bit of an ego boost? Guess there are quite a few out there who have the need to treat themselves to what the world thinks is a symbol of luxury and a statement of having arrived!

Sandeep get yourself a sonata when you come down here and lend me the Lambo !!

BTW nice to see you finally on T-BHP,you teenager!!
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Old 15th December 2009, 11:24   #29
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Pranava sure everyone has a showoff in them but paying 125 to 160% markup is kinda a waste and does not make any real sense. I believe that most hyper exotics like Lambo, Ferrari etc bought in India in the last couple of years are more a tax planning exersize as they are resold even before first service with high cash component and massive check loss thereby having some sort of advantage. Thus offsetting some liability but for the equal part the same folks also found the cars impractical don't know which theory applies seems, keeping with the jones is the first reason rest used as when convinient

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Old 15th December 2009, 12:49   #30
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Hi Canonball what may seem impractical,wasteful and irrational to one may not necessarily be applicable to a larger population. I guess defining 'Value/Worth' in matters such as these are highly subjective and personal and depends on one's view and reasons.

I respect each one's reason and need to buy what they buy, after all its their money and not mine and in the process benefiting the economy as a whole

If we all viewed the world the same way,imagine how bland and uniform it would be with respect to every aspect of our materialistic needs.

We obviously have an affluent and growing section of society who see value and worth in paying the 125% - 160% mark ups on Mercs, Beemers, Porsches,Audis, and for that matter even higher premiums for Toyotas and Hondas than what the rest of the developed world may pay. Ultimately for me it just boils down to the famous words " to each his/her own". I am sure we agree on this
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