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      10-31-2007, 07:40 AM   #53
Duckw
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Drives: '08 135i, 2010 VW Sportwagen
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Near Cincinnati

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BMW wants to attract new buyers, whatever their age or income. Because their hard-top models have grown so much in size and refinement since the E30, their least expensive sedans and coupes, suitably optioned, are pushing 50K and are marketed to the luxury trade, not to enthusiast drivers. Now we’ll see a two-pronged attack. For the (well-heeled) hard core, there will be the new M3, an E92 variant with a spectacular 4.0L V8. For others, whether enthusiasts or merely folks who aspire to a roundel for its cachet, there will be a new entry-level car that BMW hopes will excite the market as the 2002 did. The 2002 was a cult car among enthusiasts. The proliferation of successor models in the hands of badge-shopping yuppies gave rise to the hoary joke about the difference between a BMW and a porcupine. When the 1 series takes off, be prepared for a new round of inverse snobbery. Still, if I enjoy my 135i as much as I enjoyed my 2002s in their day, I won't care who else has one. Let the good times roll.
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