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    • 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. fast4door's Avatar
        fast4door -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        How can it not be?

        It isn't about confusion as much as saturation.
        well if we are talking about actual monetary value, I dont think that will change at all...to the industry, a true M car is a performance car made with the highest quality components..I dont think a M55o will be worth the same as a M5 jsut because it has the same badges..I think people will know better
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
        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
        I agree but it's fine if AMG wants to do this as they always have. Why should M hurt M when they have traditionally protect it and elevated it?
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
        well if we are talking about actual monetary value, I dont think that will change at all...to the industry, a true M car is a performance car made with the highest quality components..I dont think a M55o will be worth the same as a M5 jsut because it has the same badges..I think people will know better
        Of course not but the market still is going to be seeing a ton more M badges everywhere now. It loses it's value and certainly to me its unique appeal. I'm not as enthusiastic about having an M car any longer.

        If the mechanical changes weren't bad enough as is now they are selling the curbside appeal of the badge. I'm over it.
      1. HoozyerdaddyC63's Avatar
        HoozyerdaddyC63 -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
        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, they're 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) Where are you located? There are some countries that do badge the AMG vehicle even though it is not true to the definition that we, in the States, have made it. That is because they do not sell the AMG versions there so the C350 Sport AMG might be the package.

        2) As far as I know in the States, the AMG badge is reserved these days for those AMG's which have the hand built engines and other performance upgrades, brakes, wheels, etc..

        The wheels are AMG badged because they're AMG parts per se. I had a C350 before switching over to a C63 and loved the AMG package, but on the rear it said C350 and there was no mention of AMG.

        Sure it's all about marketing, but the 6.3 badges on the side and the AMG badge on the rear should belong to the model series and not the "oh, but I have some AMG parts" series.
      1. fast4door's Avatar
        fast4door -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        Of course not but the market still is going to be seeing a ton more M badges everywhere now. It loses it's value and certainly to me its unique appeal. I'm not as enthusiastic about having an M car any longer.

        If the mechanical changes weren't bad enough as is now they are selling the curbside appeal of the badge. I'm over it.
        yeah I see your point but I still think the car has unique appeal, like I said before..big difference between a M335 and M3...plus who cares what anyone else thinks..you still know youre driving a bad ass M3, not a M335..and anyone who looks at your car or goes for a ride in it will know the same.
      1. fast4door's Avatar
        fast4door -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by HoozyerdaddyC63 Click here to enlarge
        1) Where are you located? There are some countries that do badge the AMG vehicle even though it is not true to the definition that we, in the States, have made it. That is because they do not sell the AMG versions there so the C350 Sport AMG might be the package.

        2) As far as I know in the States, the AMG badge is reserved these days for those AMG's which have the hand built engines and other performance upgrades, brakes, wheels, etc..

        The wheels are AMG badged because they're AMG parts per se. I had a C350 before switching over to a C63 and loved the AMG package, but on the rear it said C350 and there was no mention of AMG.

        Sure it's all about marketing, but the 6.3 badges on the side and the AMG badge on the rear should belong to the model series and not the "oh, but I have some AMG parts" series.
        Im in Florida, now you have me wondering..I thought her car had the AMG badge on it..and I know Ive seen it on other Mercs but that could be the owner slapping it on, not the dealer...I know her car has the AMG package or whatever its called, definetly has the rims, but now Im wondering about the rear badge
      1. HoozyerdaddyC63's Avatar
        HoozyerdaddyC63 -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
        Im in Florida, now you have me wondering..I thought her car had the AMG badge on it..and I know Ive seen it on other Mercs but that could be the owner slapping it on, not the dealer...I know her car has the AMG package or whatever its called, definetly has the rims, but now Im wondering about the rear badge
        Yes, the AMG package on the C350 was one of the biggest selling points for me. The car looked so much better with the AMG wheels and, last I saw, the new C350 Sport package with the red top stitching aren't even available for the C63.

        Now that I have a C63 there are definitely some differences like the front fender and the dual exhaust that make it stand out, but you can get the parts or a body kit to resemble the C63 or even the C63 Black Series. I see a lot of the C300/350 owners in the forums showing off their new parts and they certainly look good. I can definitely appreciate the admiration of non C63 owners who really do love how the C63 looks, but can't afford (or don't want to pay for) a vehicle in that price range. It is fun to see what they have done with their own cars. There are some really sweet rides out there and I've seen quite a few C300's with sweet wheels and other body mods that I would love to do to my C63.

        What it really comes down to is that the owner enjoys their vehicle purchase and can do what they want with their car. Just don't expect everyone to be excited to see a non AMG car badged AMG.
      1. fast4door's Avatar
        fast4door -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by HoozyerdaddyC63 Click here to enlarge
        ...

        What it really comes down to is that the owner enjoys their vehicle purchase and can do what they want with their car. Just don't expect everyone to be excited to see a non AMG car badged AMG.
        I couldnt agree more
      1. bluejae's Avatar
        bluejae -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by cisi Click here to enlarge
        i think thats exactly the point, now for cheap you get your M car, and it will be just as much M as the other M (the one someone should recognize as the "real" M), M is M. (there is no RM like at audi the RS)
        The reason for this is that M wont mean any kind of performance M-division involvement any more, but just the the idea of owning an M....

        Finally its just like in "The incredibles" when when elastigirl tells flash "we are all special" an he replies "well thats just as much worth, as if no one would be".
        And M is becoming exactly that, normal, for everyone with no meaning performance wise. But a big seller.
        And you can be sure that the one who buys the pseudo M will be very sure about the fact, that he owns a real M car just as much as an M3 is. "hey, but my suspension comes from M (yeah right!), and all this m badges, and ist lover then the normal non M, and M performance is written on my motor". He want care the fact that his M never was at bmw M division even only for 1 minute, and his motor just got a low software tune (if it even got one!). And you will be the stupid who sends 20000 $ more to bmw for an M model just like the other one, as (as you pointed it), very few people will get the difference any more.
        A difference that before everyone(!), even the non enthusiasts, could get just looking at the name of the car.
        anyone else craving some M&M's all of a sudden? Click here to enlarge

        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by HoozyerdaddyC63 Click here to enlarge
        1) Where are you located? There are some countries that do badge the AMG vehicle even though it is not true to the definition that we, in the States, have made it. That is because they do not sell the AMG versions there so the C350 Sport AMG might be the package.

        2) As far as I know in the States, the AMG badge is reserved these days for those AMG's which have the hand built engines and other performance upgrades, brakes, wheels, etc..

        The wheels are AMG badged because they're AMG parts per se. I had a C350 before switching over to a C63 and loved the AMG package, but on the rear it said C350 and there was no mention of AMG.

        Sure it's all about marketing, but the 6.3 badges on the side and the AMG badge on the rear should belong to the model series and not the "oh, but I have some AMG parts" series.
        afaik the amg badge is for models that have the amg hand built engine... yes there are amg packages or sport packages for non-amg cars that can be added... but they don't market the car as a C300 AMG or S550 AMG... it would merely have the amg package or maybe even a performance package that gives bigger brakes or something... but if it doesn't have the engine, it's not an amg...

        and yes the owner can buy a badge and slap it on the car... just as easy as someone can slap an m badge on a 328... and when buying a car and you say you want that badge on the car or you won't buy it, then the dealer will put it on for you... even if you drive a c300... or the salesman will buy the badge himself and put it on the car...
      1. Remonster's Avatar
        Remonster -
        The video they released to promote the M Performance parts a while back said those parts are engineered by M gmbh and the head of M himself was talking about how those new parts that make up 30% of the car are all directly from M.
      1. Onetime's Avatar
        Onetime -
        This reminds me of the hue and cry Porsche loyalists made when Porsche announced it would build a SUV. Many claimed the Porsche brand would be tainted and diluted and their beloved sports car only company was selling its soul to increase market share so they could appeal to a wider demographic. How dare Porsche make anything but two door sports cars! It's blasphemous I tell you. Next thing you know, Porsche will probably make a sedan and the world will end. Now here we are years later and Porsche is going stronger than ever with a full line of SUV's and sedans as well as the many iterations of the incomparable 911. I think the BMW marketing department knows a thing or two. Like it or not, get ready to see more M badges. Brand dilution...nah.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Remonster Click here to enlarge
        The video they released to promote the M Performance parts a while back said those parts are engineered by M gmbh and the head of M himself was talking about how those new parts that make up 30% of the car are all directly from M.
        Come on, use your head, they are renaming the "is" line the M Performance Line. What M engineering goes into the 335is currently? 0. It's just marketing.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Onetime Click here to enlarge
        This reminds me of the hue and cry Porsche loyalists made when Porsche announced it would build a SUV. Many claimed the Porsche brand would be tainted and diluted and their beloved sports car only company was selling its soul to increase market share so they could appeal to a wider demographic. How dare Porsche make anything but two door sports cars! It's blasphemous I tell you. Next thing you know, Porsche will probably make a sedan and the world will end. Now here we are years later and Porsche is going stronger than ever with a full line of SUV's and sedans as well as the many iterations of the incomparable 911. I think the BMW marketing department knows a thing or two. Like it or not, get ready to see more M badges. Brand dilution...nah.
        It's not the same thing.

        Porsche built an SUV (that I bought) to expand their portfolio. BMW is taking something they already have an applying it to models they already build in a manner that misrepresents what they are and sells people buying it an image that does not apply to the car they are buying. See the difference?

        Yes, M dilution is officially here.
      1. mramg1's Avatar
        mramg1 -
        AS far as the MB cars are concerned, there are MANY dealers that slap the AMG badge on a NON AMG car IF the owner buys the AMG sport package. Its sad, but ture.

        I agree the cars LOOK better with it, as does my S600 with the AMG package. But you won't be catching me slapping an AMG badge on the trunk any time soon, LOL
      1. Sorena's Avatar
        Sorena -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        Come on, use your head, they are renaming the "is" line the M Performance Line. What M engineering goes into the 335is currently? 0. It's just marketing.
        All the stuff on the 335is that's different compared to 335i are M Performance parts.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sorena Click here to enlarge
        All the stuff on the 335is that's different compared to 335i are M Performance parts.
        It's still the N54 (not M designed), still is available with a traditional automatic (how M is that?), and those parts just have an M name but no M involvement. The tune just increases boost. Seriously? You don't see it? You think it's an M car? It's BS marketing, that's it.
      1. singletrack's Avatar
        singletrack -
        M packages have existed for years in other markets. I really don't have a problem with it if it means sexy options on my wife's next car. It will surely not be an M, but I would still like it to look very nice. I agree that this will dilute the perceived exclusivity in the US market.

        Also - the whole "is" branding always sucked IMO; so good idea to kill it.
      1. Sorena's Avatar
        Sorena -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        It's still the N54 (not M designed), still is available with a traditional automatic (how M is that?), and those parts just have an M name but no M involvement. The tune just increases boost. Seriously? You don't see it? You think it's an M car? It's BS marketing, that's it.
        Cars aren't just about drivetrains. And 335is has DCT which isn't available for 335i. And for majority of people that don't know about aftermarket, more boost does mean rocket science.

        It's not an M car. You agree, i agree and i think others agree on this. Even BMW does or else they would call it M3. They are going to call it M335i. I don't know how you equal these two. M335i IS NOT M3.

        You are too picky on this subject. Way too picky.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by singletrack Click here to enlarge
        M packages have existed for years in other markets. I really don't have a problem with it if it means sexy options on my wife's next car. It will surely not be an M, but I would still like it to look very nice. I agree that this will dilute the perceived exclusivity in the US market.

        Also - the whole "is" branding always sucked IMO; so good idea to kill it.
        What was wrong with the "is" branding?
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sorena Click here to enlarge
        Cars aren't just about drivetrains. And 335is has DCT which isn't available for 335i. And for majority of people that don't know about aftermarket, more boost does mean rocket science.

        It's not an M car. You agree, i agree and i think others agree on this. Even BMW does or else they would call it M3. They are going to call it M335i. I don't know how you equal these two. M335i IS NOT M3.

        You are too picky on this subject. Way too picky.
        An M car offers an M drivetrain. Period. Now we have M Performance which is a rebadged "is" model. It's a joke.

        Nope, not an M car. But people won't know the difference or car. It ruins the brand image, dilutes it, and is bull$#@! as far as i'm concerned.

        There shouldn't even be an "M" in front of the 335i.

        Not picky at all, consistent. BMW is the one who doesn't seem to know where to put the M badge so they are just throwing it on everything left and right.