BMW has always baffled me.
Bavarian Motor Works' cars are simultaneously infamously unreliable and highly desirable. WTF!? How does that combo persist? It doesn't matter, because BMW is undeniably cool. Young, sporty, confident… With a tradition of April Fools pranks, sexy bangle butts and angel eyes… It's a delicious honey moon, till the 4-year warranty runs out and things start falling apart. Literally. You'll be on first name terms with your local BMW service shop.
But I guess we all kind of just put up with it because BMW, for the most part, keeps its promise about being the ultimate driving machine.
The Heart of BMW
It's what differentiates BMW from other luxury car makers. The heart of BMW is absolutely hedonistic: excellent driving dynamics and handling (the way it hugs corners and handles swerving.) The luxury, high-status image stuff all came later… after which they reached the sales levels of a giant car builder, standing shoulder to shoulder with the likes of Mercedes and Lexus today.
Except… in recent years, BMW has grown bigger, quieter, softer. BMW is incrementally giving up its sporty, car-enthusiast heritage and adopting the luxury-high-status image. The drive is more "luxurious" -- floaty and plushy. They're resorting to petty tactics to try and win even pettier monthly sales competitions against Mercedes. I can't fathom why monthly sales figures matters to such giant brands as these…
I'm genuinely sad to see a brand giving up its defining quality for more market share.
Sell out… :'(
Forget About Him, You Deserve Better
If you're feeling betrayed by BMW, Lexus is ready to comfort you, honey. Lexus is making changes too: they are getting harder better faster stronger. Car & Driver (June 2013, pic above) praises the Lexus entry-level with a hearty "Habemus Papam!" Motortrend (June 2012) compared mid-levels from Audi, Infiniti, BMW and Lexus and concluded that the Lexus was the new ultimate driving machine.
Below is an insider's video on Lexus's new strategy and their ideal customer (Nicknamed Greg Smith, 48, with a wife and 2 kids. Endearing.) Skip to 2:30 for the good stuff.
- New "signature" look for powerful brand recognizability
- Aggressive and sporty dimension added to the Lexus brand
- Hoping for 50% of new buyers to be conquest buyers… any guesses as to who they plan to steal from? Yup -- those unsatisfied with BMW's new models should take a look at Lexus's offerings. We did -- and we brought one home!