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      08-22-2008, 08:15 PM   #1
elcarajo
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Okay Then - Now What?

Just read the thread "///M cars a waste in North America?" and there are a lot of good points in there, but the thing that got me thinking was the refrain that BMW, and even M cars have become "watered downed pudgy money grab" [Ruff]. I am extremely happy with my new car, but it's absolutely true - it's one of the best GT's in the world, but it is a GT.

I look at BMW, traditionally one of two remaining brands for drivers, and I see the X3, X5, X6, and the 1ers. The X's are all about meeting mass market demand; the one series was supposed to be a reversion to the values of the 2002, but it weighs over a ton and a half and suffers the same techno-bloat that the rest of the brand is getting. My conclusion is that BMW has changed its traditional priority.

Porsche, the other drivers' brand, seems to be headed the same direction, with the Cayenne, the Boxster, Cayman, and Panamera.

So where does that leave us? It's possible BMW will release something that really does hark back to its roots in the 2002 and the e30, but probably not.

Obviously I mean no disrespect to the brand or its followers - I am on my third BMW and couldn't be happier.


My question is - if not BMW, then what? Caterham? Lotus?
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      08-22-2008, 09:41 PM   #2
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As for I BMW, I might agree with you, their cars (m included) are losing a bit of thier edge. But Porsche, I really beg to differ. Other than the cayenne, every porsche is a sports car. Boxter and Cayman are totally in line with what makes a car a "sports" car. And I really wouldn't knock the panamera, as it may be fugly, bmw m5's have long been considered 4 door sports cars.

people bash porsche for using the same shape for the 911 for the past 40 years but knock it when they come out with something different. I had a 987s, and thought it was one of the best sports cars I had ever driven. If needing a daily driver was not a necessity, I would have kept it.

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Originally Posted by elcarajo View Post
Just read the thread "///M cars a waste in North America?" and there are a lot of good points in there, but the thing that got me thinking was the refrain that BMW, and even M cars have become "watered downed pudgy money grab" [Ruff]. I am extremely happy with my new car, but it's absolutely true - it's one of the best GT's in the world, but it is a GT.

I look at BMW, traditionally one of two remaining brands for drivers, and I see the X3, X5, X6, and the 1ers. The X's are all about meeting mass market demand; the one series was supposed to be a reversion to the values of the 2002, but it weighs over a ton and a half and suffers the same techno-bloat that the rest of the brand is getting. My conclusion is that BMW has changed its traditional priority.

Porsche, the other drivers' brand, seems to be headed the same direction, with the Cayenne, the Boxster, Cayman, and Panamera.

So where does that leave us? It's possible BMW will release something that really does hark back to its roots in the 2002 and the e30, but probably not.

Obviously I mean no disrespect to the brand or its followers - I am on my third BMW and couldn't be happier.


My question is - if not BMW, then what? Caterham? Lotus?
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      08-22-2008, 10:23 PM   #3
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Sorry - not bashing the Porsche thing. I read a year or so ago that BMW and Porsche are the only companies still focused on the driver, but I'm concerned about both.

I kinda like the fact that they have spent all that time refining the body - shows they are more interested in the results than the appearance.
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      08-22-2008, 11:24 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elcarajo View Post
Just read the thread "///M cars a waste in North America?" and there are a lot of good points in there, but the thing that got me thinking was the refrain that BMW, and even M cars have become "watered downed pudgy money grab" [Ruff].
Why would Ruff say that when he clearly said this
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The M3 is an incredible car: A visual and auditory delight. It is quick, fast, well balanced, and agile on it's feet. It even has room for a party of four to enjoy the whole magic carpet ride together. A heritage only matched by the Corvette and 911. It offers two excellent tranmission choices and the best trick LSD in a production car. The M boys did us good. I love M3s like no other car.

Through no fault of their own, the M boys couldn't have been unluckier in the timing of the release of their latest beast. Economics and fuel prices are in the process of killing the sales of this car. This is good for the current M owner and the enthusiast who can look past the present and into the future and see the much bigger picture. The high revving flat torqued S65 is an "exotic" sounding and performing piece of engineering genius that could of pushed the M3 into 80+k territory. Instead, one with a fair amount of means, can purchase a base car at bargain basement price of less than 60k and they even throw in a free car and maintenance to boot. Who would of thunk?

What are BMW and the M division to do in economic times that resemble the 70s. May I make some humble suggestions. FI needs to be the future of BMW but not the M Division. I hope BMW sticks with the basic configuration of the S65. They had better be working on implementing cutting edge DFI technology and the much ballyhooed KERS technology into a new S65. Imagine in few short years the M3 gaining a second life with a NA powerplant that now generates in the neighborhood of 450 hp with a high red line, flat as a table top torque curve and weighs the same or if we are real lucky, a bit less than the current car. And here is the kicker 23+ mpg highway and NO gas guzzler tax. DFI is the critical component to making this car happen. The same treatment can be done to the amazing S85 V10. Again, as I have argued until I am blue in the face, DFI is the critical component here. The R&D needs to be spent there, rather than the current focus of hocus pocus and overly complicated electronics that dilute the driving experience, drive up cost, and create reliability issues galore.

Then BMW can finally bring to market a true halo M car, the worthy successor to the vaunted M1. A V8/V10 configured mid engine car weighing significantly less than the M3 and at a slightly lower price point than a heavier all wheel drive R8...I like dreaming, especially about playing cat and mouse with an F430.

Finally, BMW must decide to CPO their current and future M cars. To not, is simply conceding to the wise consumer what BMW must already understand that owning an M for more than a few years will be a reliability and money pit nightmare. BMW stop washing your hands of your M cars once the dotted line has been signed. Simplify your cars and make them more reliable and support your own product with a CPO stamp of approval.
Sounds like you are greatly contradicting yourself Ruff.
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      08-23-2008, 12:01 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Krueger///M3 View Post
Why would Ruff say that when he clearly said this

Sounds like you are greatly contradicting yourself Ruff.
Exactly
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