Lexus: MUJI Edition

I cannot agree more with Top Gear about Lexus and its achievement in perfection in dullness! I don’t think that any kid on this earth would have never imagined to drive a Lexus, if someone did, she/he never saw a Ferrari yet. Lexus is very equipped, very safe, very environmental, very green with its 1980s style green digital watch, very senseless, very boring, boring and more boring. I am not saying Lexus is a bad car but there is no reasonable instinction to buy a Lexus. You should say “I want a stupid huge V8 hybrid and save the planet” and there you go, it is Lexus LS600h.
Also for long years, Lexus had accidental similarities with German cars. Probably designers dreamed the same cars in different parts of the world. The things are different in US; American people love Lexus! Lexus was made for US and they achieved the status for Lexus. However, in Japan and Europe nobody cares Lexus! Actually in Japan, Japanese people don’t prefer Lexus as it is domestic car :)
However, everything from Japan is not boring :) Hopefully! As I mentioned earlier, Japanese brand Muji is a very good example of minimalist design philosophy in various goods with no-brand strategy. As I can see, Muji is doing better in Europe than Lexus. And I started to think; why Lexus does not offer any Muji Editions of their boring cars! For example; Lexus LS600h Muji Edition. The interior will be designed by Muji’s designer instead of Lexus’s :) Most probably, it will look much better and they could have new customers.
Lexus needs this kind of marketing tactics to increase their competitive power in Europe. People cannot be impressed by digital green watch in here.

Pilates for Luxury Segment

Pilates is a very popular physical fitness exercise. This exercise helps to strech your muscles, increase your concentration, control your breathing, better precision and more. I am not an expert on this, however I know that if you could manage to do it, it is good to do it.
In last decade; automotive companies also started to do pilates for luxury segment. However their pilates was not like the normal one! Instead of calming yourself and developing your physical health, this pilates made them more angry and agressive.
The ambition to jump luxury segment has some reasons; some brands desire to have a flagship model to strength their brand image and develop high technologies for flagship and transfer to other models (VW Phaëton model), some brands wanted revive a died brand and increase their market (Mercedes Maybach model), some brands extend their brand to extend it, even though they knew that they will fail(Renault VelSatis, Peugeot 607) and lastly some brands shift their brand image into luxury by revealing a new model (Hyundia model).
All of these models did not work as we all know that. Phaëton is an excellent car with very sophisticated technology but it didn’t sell much but its structure is used for Bentley Continental Family which is very rational in economic terms. Mercedes Maybach was great project and introduced great cars which look likes old Mercedes S Class (W220) from outside and also from inside, despite the space age technology, it could not race with Rolls Royce or Bentley. Renault VelSatis was great looking and that was all, Peugeot 607 was a try to jump to a new segment and failed. However Hyundai made some success with Genesis in US market and that motivation gave more motivation and they will introduce a car for international market to compete with S Class, BMW 7 Series and Audi A8 and that is called Equus. Okay, Equus might be selling very well in Asia but the world is not Asia.
In general; a car company cannot go up into higher segments, the brand is mostly stuck on the segment which was emerged. Mercedes is always a luxury brand despite A Class, Rolls Royce is always super luxury brand, Peugeot will good price, good looking brand and Hyundia will be remembered with their Excel and Accent. It is nearly impossible to go up in automotive industry, even Mercedes spent lots of money and failed. Yes, Lexus made it but only in US. Even in Japan, their people don’t buy it because they don’t perceive Lexus as luxury brand.
These companies did brand extension, strecth the cars for upper segments, increase concentration, control your breath. The result? Not a good way of relaxing like Pilates. Don’t strecth too much.
The best solution is to focus on increasing quality, better design and extend brand to lower segments. If the company has know-how and money like VW, go head introduce car like Phaëton. It won’t hurt you, unless try not to do that.