A limited few people can afford true M Cars. That being said everyone wants one. So BMW is doing the smart thing by having "M" packages for lesser cars. That gives them the sales numbers to still produce true performance sports cars for those that can afford them. We don't want BMW to go the way Honda and Toyota did when they stopped producing any cars that were performance oriented and only went for the masses.
I would have loved a 128 or a 135 with the M package on it when I was younger knowing that the next step was an M3. I would have emphasized that it had the "M" package on it to emphasize sporty. They make great cars. Period.