• More M dilution? BMW "is" model line dead, to be replaced with M Performance Line

      The dilution of the M brand and BMW turning its back on its history just continues. Car and Driver reports they have information from a source inside BMW that "is" models will no longer be offered and instead they will be replaced with the M Performance Line. Kind of a sad day for longtime BMW fans as the "is" models were very special denoting fuel injection with the i and sport with the s.

      Some great BMW cars were denoted in such fashion and it served to even protect the M brand such as when BMW called the X5 a 4.8is rather than putting an M badge on it. At that time BMW believed the letter M only belonged on a select few vehicles worthy of the name making it exclusive, special, and sought after. Now, practically everyone is going to have an M on their BMW. People will now think their cars are somehow in the same league as other M vehicles even though they do not have motors or other parts developed by the Motorsport division which is the whole point of putting an M on a BMW in the first place. It's simply maddening.

      So why is BMW doing it? Money and marketing. The letter M sells. BMW themselves calls it the most powerful letter in the world and it is likely because of the impact it has on their bottom line. Imagine selling the M idea and not even having to provide an M car. Instant profit without the additional engineering and investment of actually having to produce an M model. Not to mention this allows BMW to copy Audi in a sense of offering sport models such as the "S-Line" in the mid range and then the higher performance cars on top of that keeping everything neat and uniform. Why BMW is mimicking Audi instead of continuing down their own path they have forged makes no sense. Unless you work in BMW's marketing department.

      So, another proud BMW chapter comes to a close. Here's to seeing an M badge on every BMW model in the lineup, whether it deserves it and is actually developed by the Motorsport division or not.

      This article was originally published in forum thread: More M dilution? BMW "is" model line dead, to be replaced with M Performance Line started by Sticky View original post
      Comments 91 Comments
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by e46e92love Click here to enlarge
        Everybody wins: the whore gets what he wants, the M-GmbH enengineers get what they want (less involvement from marketing) and the enthusiasts get what they want (a more focused ///M car).
        But the major loss is to the meaning of M, the value of the brand image that has been built over DECADES of incredible/exclusive work, and to the core enthusiast who took pride in having an M car. I just can't say I feel the same about the M brand when the principles it was built on have been sold.

        Are we all at least in agreement that this is a shameless money grab? I mean where does it stop? This is a luxury automaker that claims to build the Ultimate Driving Machine not a pimp.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        I sent Autoblog this tip and they didn't credit me: http://www.autoblog.com/2012/08/26/b...rmance-models/

        I'm getting frustrated. I keep sending them tips they use but get no credit.
      1. Yukohama's Avatar
        Yukohama -
        the next m3 better be a $#@!ing amazing car.
      1. whoosh's Avatar
        whoosh -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by e46e92love Click here to enlarge
        , the M-GmbH enengineers get what they want (less involvement from marketing) and the enthusiasts get what they want (a more focused ///M car).
        this is an interesting take on it. Let the Mline exist for bull$#@! like the current X6M, and allow the real M cars to return to their more performance oriented heritage. I can see how this might be a positive, even if it is at the expense of the overall M prestige.

        And it's not just BMW pulling this crap. AMG has appeared on the G-wagen for many years, and Porsche has put the GTS badge on the Cayenne and Panamera. M335i seems much less of a sin than the X5/6M.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by whoosh Click here to enlarge
        And it's not just BMW pulling this crap. AMG has appeared on the G-wagen for many years, and Porsche has put the GTS badge on the Cayenne and Panamera.
        The GTS badge is a bridge between Turbo and S models it isn't the highest end brand moniker Porsche offers.

        AMG for years put the badge on everything and the AMG motors in everything. BMW M didn't. Well, now they do.
      1. Onetime's Avatar
        Onetime -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        When does flooding the market with something increase the value of said something?
        they are not flooding the market, they are renaming.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Onetime Click here to enlarge
        they are not flooding the market, they are renaming.
        So this doesn't increase the amount of M badged cars on the market how?
      1. bobS's Avatar
        bobS -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by e46e92love Click here to enlarge
        +1......

        I used to care about this but realized that if them whoring out the ///M brand allows them to offer more focused variants of true ///M cars, like what is rumored to be happening on the next generation ///M3, then I'm ok with it.

        I can understand not wanting to confuse people with all the different badges of performance levels, and that is what having the iS badge does, the ///M badge is worth more. I get it. I really do. Just as long as they don't dumb down the true ///M cars.....let the badge whores buy ///M-Performance cars and let them think they have an ///M. Everybody wins: the whore gets what he wants, the M-GmbH enengineers get what they want (less involvement from marketing) and the enthusiasts get what they want (a more focused ///M car).
        I agree with this. There are many people that buy m3's bc of the badge, and could careless about anything else. That's why heavy options like nav, sunroofs, heated seats, etc exist and also why the m3 has (in some people's eyes) been softened with each generation. If this allows the ///m department to make more focused cars, go for it!
      1. Onetime's Avatar
        Onetime -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        So this doesn't increase the amount of M badged cars on the market how?
        Correct, it creates more M badges but not more M cars. M cars will always have value.
      1. e46e92love's Avatar
        e46e92love -
        Actually, they only claim to build the Ultimate Driving Machine in this country, in every other country in the world, they have been for many, many years and continue to use the "Joy of Driving" campaign. As far as whoring out the brand, hard for me to tell a for profit company they should make less money. I worry about the FI move, but then again, look at what Nissan did with the GTR, and in every one agree that is a game changer.

        I am more pissed about the ///M3 being made into an ///M4.....WTF is that. RIDICULOUS. How you kill a legend like the ///M3 just for marketing purposes is BEYOND me.
      1. Remonster's Avatar
        Remonster -
        Sticky, you're upset that they're putting M badges on cars that have nothing to do with M gmbh...except these cars (and the M Performance parts) are designed by M engineers, the only difference is these M Performance models have ~30% of their parts changed from the standard car (30% applies specifically to the M135i but you can expect all of them to be similar) vs 80% changed on a full M car. I guess my point is if M gmbh themselves are proud to put their name and badge on these cars, that should be good enough for anyone.

        I think these models fill a very interesting place in BMW's lineup and I'll definitely be looking at the M235i and M335i in addition to the actual M2 and M3 when I'm ready to replace my 135i.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Onetime Click here to enlarge
        Correct, it creates more M badges but not more M cars. M cars will always have value.
        And the brand and image is now devalued pulling down M cars as well.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by e46e92love Click here to enlarge
        As far as whoring out the brand, hard for me to tell a for profit company they should make less money.
        Would they be hurting themselves by keeping "is" just as it was? Worked for the entirety of BMW up to this point.

        The Nissan GTR is a different car.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Remonster Click here to enlarge
        Sticky, you're upset that they're putting M badges on cars that have nothing to do with M gmbh...except these cars (and the M Performance parts) are designed by M engineers
        No they aren't. No M motor. The "is" models are not designed by M engineers. They are just standard cars with the standard parts and maybe a suspension or tune upgrade.
      1. fast4door's Avatar
        fast4door -
        I dont like it but all the major car makers are doing it now..Audi alreadu has been talked about, Merc has been doing ot for a while..my girls C350 has AMG wheels and badges..seen a lot of Mercs like that too..even Lexus is doing it now, slapping a F badge of everything(not that F has anywhere near the same history of M, just saying)..like I said I dont like it all..but to me, a M5 still sounds alot better than a M535 or M550, same with the M3 and M335..
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
        my girls C350 has AMG wheels and badges
        This is another example that is just stupid. People are essentially buying a badge. It's retarded.
      1. fast4door's Avatar
        fast4door -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        And the brand and image is now devalued pulling down M cars as well.
        I dont think so, atleast I hope not..I think the only people who might get confused are the people who dont really know to much about cars..Badges or not, I think youll definetly be able to tell the difference between a 335 and a M5 or 550 and M5
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
        I dont think so, atleast I hope not..
        How can it not be?

        It isn't about confusion as much as saturation.
      1. fast4door's Avatar
        fast4door -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        This is another example that is just stupid. People are essentially buying a badge. It's retarded.
        I agree, but the sad truth is, is that the car looks better with the AMG package without having to pay the extra 40k for the AMG motor which she doesnt want..its just business, theyre trying to make more money and it works, but just because her car has AMG wheels and badges, doesnt mean her car looks anything like a C63.I guess thats my point
      1. HoozyerdaddyC63's Avatar
        HoozyerdaddyC63 -
        The M line of motors is one thing and the M parts themselves are something entirely different imo.

        Does it matter if someone has an M steering wheel and there is a badge placed on the steering wheel? No. Same with wheels and other parts.

        BUT to badge an entire car M just because it has some of the parts is something I don't agree with. I don't even have an M car, but I see the same problem with AMG's. If I were to get parts from the Black Series I still wouldn't badge my car a C63 Black Series.

        When I see the AMG badge on the wheels of a C300 I think it looks good, but when I see the badge on the back of the car claiming it's AMG I disagree. To the enthusiast who owns one I would think it does make a difference since it basically devalues the vehicle. AMG's are known for having hand built motors. It's a personal experience I've not had with any other car, but it is a connection I have with any other AMG owner. Those who add the badge to a non AMG car don't have that type of connection and I'm not going to say I resent them, but it almost feels like they are taking a little bit of that enjoyment and connection away from me and devaluing it.

        As far as racing goes, if someone in a Honda were to smoke an M or AMG and go bragging about it there are two things that will happen. 1) People will think the person is lying or 2) if the driver has video, people will think AMG's are not worth the price. I see these discussions every time there is a YouTube video of a supposed kill.

        Again, this is just my two cents and I cannot really understand what would really be going through the minds of other M series owners since I have an AMG. I will probably understand when MB decides to start calling other cars AMG's when they don't have an AMG motor.