Originally Posted by 1fastdoc
A BMW enthusiast will know but a general car enthusiast will not. The AMG is a great example. I've been a car guy for a couple decades and there are a lot of Mercedes in the garage where I park. I couldn't tell you one from the other but I do know that one cost twice as much as another it was sitting beside. Sadly, I still don't know which is which.
My neighbor had a 335i and when she first saw my car she told me she used to have one just like it, referencing her recently sold 335i. I just smiled, it wasn't worth the discussion.
I like having a car that is special and that even many laypersons know is different from your typical 3 series. So no, I don't like BMW whoring it out. I did debadge my mustang but that was for stealth reasons. The M3 keeps that badge.
That's probably true, but the only enthusiast that matters is myself at the end of the day and what I think of my own car. It's a plus when other people can discern the difference, but isn't a deal breaker for me. Is BMW whoring out the M badge? Absolutely. Such is the world we live in where big brands want to make even bigger money...
I think AMG is sort of a bad comparison just because we know what a C63 AMG Coupe is vs. a C350 Sport (distinctly different cars in my book). AMG actually still exclusively retains proper AMG badging on real AMG cars and the requisite aggressive body panel enhancements to boot. The other cars may have pieces that look AMG (wheels etc.), but they certainly don't have the badge or exactly the same panelling... now that I think of it, kind of makes me respect them more now
As for the person who still can't tell the difference, that's another story altogether.
Now Audi did a little trick on us with the S moniker, but in a somewhat acceptable fashion. The RS line was always there to claim the top awards in Audi performance. The S line was simply "de-tuned" slowly over the past 5 years to make it more mass, lower priced , and to make space for the RS line now coming to the US market. Although I am disappointed in the RS5, they need to do better than that to charge a sizable premium in that class.