Originally Posted by Efthreeoh
So I'll counter with Cadillac. In the late 1940's through the mid 1970's Cadillac was the premier car company of the United States and if not the world. There are very few members of this Forum that hasn't pissed all over the Cadillac ATS. The brand's reputation amongst younger buyers is crap, based off of long-past images and product of crappy re-badged Chevrolets of perceived poor quality. All from Cadillac's demise in the '80s of platform sharing with Chevy and other GM (non-Cadillac platforms). All in the good name of evolution, flourishment, survival, and cost cutting, and brand dilution, and cash cow models. Shall I even mention Saab?
I drove many mid-70's Cadillacs when they were new and older late '50s models (my Uncle collects them). While not being sports cars by any fashion, for what they were designed to be (luxury interstate cruisers and town cars), they were well built, fantastic cars, and far superior to anything on the road at the time. Lincoln too; go find a mid-60's Continental. Those cars were built to a level not even approached today. Read up on how the Continental engine was bench run-in at the factory before installation and how the entire car was track tested prior to shipment.
This too is what Mercedes in America meant 25 years ago. You call it progress and evoloution. We’ll just see.
Good points, but on that same token, Cadillac's past floundering was an example of change done incorrectly (and Saab is a perfect example of a company that lacked a clear marketing plan with very poorly competing models at their given price points).
The trick with most "cheap" luxury cars these days is that production methods are far superior than in the past, and you're going to be hard pressed to find a vehicle that does a poor service to its brand's image. Mercedes took a huge hit in the late '90s and early '00s when the bean counters and corner-cutting was at its worst. They've since remedied their errors for the most part and it's present amongst their latest fleet of vehicles.