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| thanks for writing in. we’ve received several letters like yours. In my opinion there is a price point above which some U.S buyers of performance cars will make their choice based almost solely on horsepower, zero-to-60 mph acceleration and the looks of the car, and without much regard to technical specifications, build quality or overall driving dynamics. |
When these people buy M3’s, they tend to whine about characteristics inherent in M cars. Whiners tend to be very persistent, firing off nasty-grams to BMW all around the world. If they whine loudly enough, this, in turn, sometimes leads BMW to “dumb down” U.S specification M cars, much to the chagrin of drivers like me who prefer the cars in their un-Americanized hard-edged form. For this reason alone, I like to point out in print that M cars are not for everyone, and that there is a lot more to a car than horsepower, zero-to-60 acceleration and what it looks like in front of the condo. The point is, people need to know what they are buying and be sure it’s what they want.
For example, the only reason I drive a 1991 318is and not a 2004 M3 is that I can’t afford it. In fact, if I could afford it, I’d regularly drive a Z8, an M coupe and an 850csi that would share a 60x60 tile-floored, track-lighted, bar-equipped garage with at least a dozen other formidably-tuned Bimmers of factory and aftermarket flavours and a smattering of classic and contemporary BMW motor-cycles. But the overwhelming majority of buyers have very little idea what a true performance car is like and how it differs in driving dynamics from say, a luxury car that has the same horsepower and acceleration figures.
No worries about those Nissan drivers. In 2024, when people are restoring 300,000 mile 2004 330i ZHPs, those 2004 Infiniti G35s will have long ago been crushed back into Sapporo beer cans from whence they came.
Eventually, I think we’ll see performance packages and M cars in every model range BMW creates. Look for AWD in each model range as well; at least in the U.S. market where buyers are now convinced they are not safe without it. Eventually, to compete in the U.S., BMW will have to reconsider its commitment to RWD- all because people refuse to buy snow tires and learn true winter driving skills.
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|What are the good BMW aftermarket companies.||B.D||Bimmer Talk/Motorsports Talk||4||10-01-2003 08:55 PM|