May 15, 2001 |
If you thought the $50,000 luxury SUV was the pinnacle of vehicular excess, just wait for the luxury pickup truck. Despite soaring gasoline prices and a weakening national economy, Lincoln and Cadillac both are preparing to launch ultra-luxury versions of the pickup, an American blue-collar icon. Ford Motor Co.'s Lincoln will lead the way with the Blackwood, due in dealerships late this summer. General Motors Corp.'s Cadillac plays catch-up in the first quarter of 2002 with the Escalade EXT.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 17, 1992 |
Sharon Green still hopes that she won't be able to sell Tally, the 6-year-old mare that was her "dream come true," an animal she not only rides but kisses and cuddles. Maybe no one will offer a reasonable price. Or the only potential buyer will look like a horse-beater. "I couldn't possibly sell to anyone who'd mistreat her," Green said. "We'd have to keep her."
May 23, 1995 |
Just two days after the Clinton Administration's 100% import tariff on most Japanese-made luxury cars provisionally took effect, the five Japanese import companies affected were split on the tactics for handling the looming crisis. And while both sides in the trade talks so far have been intransigent, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Ronald H. Brown said Monday that Washington would abide by any ruling of the World Trade Organization over the sanctions it has imposed.
January 18, 2008 |
The purse may be the consummate accessory in New York, but in Los Angeles, where Hollywood deals are sealed while navigating traffic on the Santa Monica Freeway, the cellphone is the ultimate status symbol. Here are some that really get the cash register ringing. $28,000 to $171,550 GoldVish Illusion. For the jewelry lover who has everything, this diamond-encrusted phone comes in a solid 18-karat casing in yellow, rose or white gold with crocodile leather inlays available in 12 colors.
January 14, 1996
Donald Callender's business jet is fit for a king, and it needs to be. Passengers who have chartered it include foreign dignitaries on vacation trips around the U.S.; a half-dozen former heads of the Department of Defense being ferried to a GOP strategy meeting in Texas several years ago; and an assortment of Hollywood types including Danny DeVito and Sylvester Stallone.
April 27, 1992 |
. . . AND BUST: First the luxury tax, then the recession have dealt heavy blows to local boat sales. The result: The most expensive new boat in local inventory reportedly is a mere $800,000. . . . Newport Beach dealer Gordon Barienbrock says his inventory has slipped from $6 million last year to about $2 million now. . . . The pinched market has him talking like a car dealer: "It's probably the best time to buy. The prices are cheap, the deals are better. We have to move our inventory."
March 2, 1993 |
Any marketer who honestly believes that conspicuous consumption is out--and restraint is in--didn't make it to Beverly Hills over the weekend. There was ostentatiousness at its grandest. Three blocks of Rodeo Drive were closed so that Ferrari--the Italian maker of $100,000-plus sports cars--could display its 24-karat sheet metal to some of the wealthiest gawkers in L.A. Ferrari said it came to town to introduce its new $120,000 Spider convertible and, incidentally, to raise money for charity.
May 18, 1995 |
Do you dump the Renoir or give up the Bentley? Sam Gonen sees people torn by this type of decision. They are the elite of Beverly Hills--actors, producers, big tycoons. They have an image to maintain, yet they are squeezed. They can't quite keep up with the Joneses. At Gonen's pawnshop, they solve pressing cash-flow problems by borrowing on their Tiffany lamps, Cartier bracelets or luxury cars. There is never the fuss of a loan application, or a fear of the deal making the tabloids.
July 23, 2002 |
Buoyant consumers have been the stabilizing force in an otherwise wobbly economy, but the stock market's current nose dive is raising questions about how long that can continue. Retailers of luxury goods and services say they already are feeling the pinch of the market downturn, and economists fear the pain may spread.
December 15, 2004 |
My Christmas fantasy always involves dispensing with gifts, stopping the music and replanting all those doomed trees. But there's no way I would pass up baking cookies with ginger, doctoring eggnog with brandy or indulging in any of the other tasteful aspects of the holiday. Beyond its more obvious meanings, after all, Christmas is really so much about flavor. At least a dozen fruits, spices and liquors are indelibly associated with it.