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      11-30-2019, 01:01 PM   #198
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Drives: 2015 M3 6MT
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Seattle

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Originally Posted by pbar View Post
There have *always* been many of those customers. They used to be the people who bought a 335i saying "it's just as good as an M3" and if they couldn't tell the difference then that was just fine ... now they buy an M340i, M350i whatever.

The M cars were supposed to have rough edges ("mummy, my DCT is not smooth enough!") and compromised comfort in exchange for superior handling and performance that enthusiasts appreciated. They cost more because the potential market was smaller.

If BMW isn't going to do that any more, then they should be honest about it and, cancel the M3 and tell everybody that the mass market "M350ixs+" is the car they should want.

That's the logical conclusion of the "forum enthusiasts are only a tiny part of the market" argument (that inevitably follows every post like this).

Personally, I'm shopping for extended warranties right now, hoping that something better will eventually appear.
While I agree with how the ZF changes the character of the car vs. the DCT I disagree with that it becomes just a faster MXX(X)i car. My experience is that the true M cars are built to a very different standard in terms of endurance, cooling, strength, quality and they are tuned much more meticulously in chassis/suspension/steering.
It’s a similar difference between buying an M performance car and a true M as it is between buying an Audi and a Porsche. The price difference between a real M and a non does not nearly reflect the superior products the M cars are vs. MXXXi cars.

And at the current size and practicality of the M3 I believe there is a sizable market who want all of that with a smoother gearbox. If you look at the lineup of M these days it’s not a lineup of track cars with compromised comfort, it’s a high end sub brand of BMW building better cars with sporty ambitions. The smallest cars retain some of the original M car’s track ambitions while the larger cars do not. The M3 is now having one foot on each side. An MT and a ZF make at least some sense.

Last edited by solstice; 11-30-2019 at 01:28 PM..