Originally Posted by Koldun
Great article, but it only served to reinforce my prejudices. There may not be such a thing as a "real M car", but it's very clear the mentality of the division has shifted and the bean counters are in full control. This shift may have been necessary, but that doesn't make it any less disheartening.
Bean counters? I would agree somewhat. But that's the reality of the auto industry unless you want to spend 6 figures on a no compromise car. The generally accepted industry figure to remain in business in the car industry is to sell 2 million cars annually. This is due to gov't regulations, specifically safety and environmental. Not to mention that different countries have different regulatory requirements.
Marketing? DEFINITELY. I think BMW is trying to fully capitalize on the M brand right now to increase its sales to the above goal. I think we all believe that there is an aggressive marketing campaign of the M brand.
When we drive a BMW, its a BMW through and through. The only other mainstream luxury brand that can claim that is Mercedes. Unlike the Audi Jetta, Lexus Camry, Acura Accord, and the Infiniti Altima...you really do get a BMW. IMO, this larger use of the M logo is a necessary evil to keep BMW independent...then I'm all for it. Better than driving a BMW Fusion.
In the end, when you look at what you get for a $55k base on the E9X M3? Its an absolute AWESOME deal! At the track, I see some IS-Fs, G37s, and a couple of C classes and A4s...you don't see a lot of them long term. Magazine Reviews are meaningless...its the smiles at the track that tell the story. The only cars that I see more of than M3s are vettes, 911s, and Miatas.
Originally Posted by 1MOREMOD
so are you buying forward or looking back. i know for me the past is more interesting than the future for me at bmw. not so at some other brands.
tHere is an example if my personal M snobbery. To me...The F10 M5 doesn't really represent the aesthetic departure from sedan transformed to sports car like the E90 M3 does. I'm not too keen on the M4 so far. And...the M5 seems like its just stupidly over powered with a mountain of unusable low end torque. I've never experience an over powered M car from the factory...they all seemed to be just enough to excite but not an over the top drag racer.
I am in no way suggesting that the new M3/4 won't be superior in every way as far as driving dynamics. I am VERY excited about that.