Has the M Division and BMW lost their way?
First of all, before the flaming begins for me submitting another whiny thread, hear me out. I am as hardcore BMW and M fan as there is, period. I have literally been researching, and saving cash to buy an M3 for the past 20 yrs. My intent is to keep the car for another 20 yrs. So I am a very vested in this purchase and I have went way beyond the call for due diligence in my preparation for such a monetary commitment. One thing I can confidently say is I do know my stuff when it comes to BMW. Let me start with the M1. Not many people know this but BMW commissioned Lamborghini to build the Chassis for BMW. It was BMW's only mid engine car...and What a car. It makes me ill to see that the R8 is now the spiritual successor to the M1 and it is made by Audi. The R8 is the true challenger to the Porshce brigade just like the M1 was. Where is BMW and the M division? I just think it is so ironic that BMW is arrogant enough to say Audi is not their direct competitor. Wait till they drop Lamborghini's V10 into the R8 and you will really see Porsche limping off the scene with their tails between their legs. Porsche is too worried about the 997 cash cow to allow the Cayman to be the car it capable of being. The M5 was ranked 3rd out of 3 cars in a Car and Driver shootout with AMG taking the victory barely over the S6. The Cadilac CTS V is rummored to be getting a 500-600 hp Corvette power. The Lexus GS-F is is building an M5 fighter with possible V10 power. The RS6 may have what could be +550hp. I have never seen the new M coupe rated higher than the Cayman nor are we likely anytime soon to see the the yet released M3 rated higher than Porsches "can't afford a 911 huh" car. Reports are the C63's steering and handling are much improved. The latest rumor from Mercedes is they are no longer going to build their transmissions in house but rather outsource them and focus on the new DCT technology. Infinity is quickly catching up to the 335 with the G37 and offers an LSD to boot. The new Audi B8 is is rumored to be be getting twin turbos with its V6 for 300+ horsepower and has for the most part fixed the Audi demon known as understeer by repositioning the engine farther back in the chassis. The twin turbo GTR is going to send all the car companies back to the drawing boards. It just seems like BMW is moving in the direction of what AMG use to be...great engines, with all the creature comforts but heavy and a "blunt" driving experience. Audi, the German step child in America, but highly respected in Europe, looks like it is becoming the new M Division. They are willing to take risks and make the necessary changes to not only compete but dominate the sports car segment. And in turn, build the car BMW had always been destined to ressurect. I had confidence the E92M3 was going to recieve the type of reviews the R8 is getting. I was wrong. I know that reviews are just that... reviews but they are conducted by professionals who drive and review supercars every day for a living. I can't do that, so their reviews became an important piece of the puzzle in determining my purchase. AMG also appears to have gotten it's act together for the first time and actually commited itself to motor sports and driving dynamics with it's new offerings. I can gaurantee you, Porsche has become very nervous themselves as they should be and will need to respond soon. I am sure DFI and DCT will be their first response but will it be enough? That leaves the vaunted M division, the keepers of Motor Sport. Will they get back to their roots, those roots that have earned their well deserved respect and reputation or will they continue move in the direction of Lexus and Mercedes offering wonderful electronics and high speed creature comforts? I am confident they will respond, but how and when?