Originally Posted by Technic
See VW example with the GTI and the R32. It used to be two very distinctive performance models, until VW dropped the 2.0T in the GTI in 2006. That distinctive performance was gone and with it the reason to buy the R32. Any GTI with a $500 APR tune was blowing away the R32. By the time the second-gen R32 showed up in 2008 the demand was so weak that the limited, one-year run of 5000 unit took several years to be sold at up to $7000 discounts.
BMW tried to make the 335i somehow performance-limited vs the M3 but with a few tweaks the 335i can provide pretty much the same accelaration as an M3 up to triple digits... but still the M3 is a different vehicle altogether by virtue of the so many parts that are not shared that gives the M3 an edge in handling and overall character. The GTI and the R32 -much more in the latest generation- are almost identical with the exception of the R32 4WD.
I'm no corporate drone so all this "M-edification" of the brand should have a business purpose somewhere -whatever it is. Hopefully they will not dillute the brand to the level of just another fancy sticker in the trunk.
I just had that same exact conversation with someone at work
He came to ask me should I get the GTi or should I spend more and get the R32
I said why would you pay an extra 10,000 for what is basically the same car
Get a GTi and a tune and call it a day
And now BMW want to have 3 M 3 series models?
So we'll have small m, then medium m, then M3