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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
BMW expects tough US market
By Jeremy Grant in Chicago
Published: February 5 2004

BMW, the German carmaker, has warned of tough conditions in the North American luxury vehicle market this year as an increasing number of products compete for sales in a gradually improving US economy.

Tom Purves, chairman and chief executive of BMW North America, said he was optimistic that the luxury vehicle business would grow due to a stronger US economy. He also said that BMW would benefit from the introduction of two new models for the US one of which, the X3 sport utility vehicle, goes on sale on Friday.

But he said: "I don't think it's necessarily a home run to achieve your aspirational sales numbers. We broke records every month last year, we intend to try to keep doing that and I think we've set ourselves a challenging task."

He said that while the luxury vehicle sales would perform better than mass-market vehicle sales, there was not only intense competition between "the existing Lexus, BMW, Mercedes-Benz triumvirate" but also fresh pressure from Audi, Jaguar and Acura, the luxury offering from Honda, as well as Cadillac, the resurgent luxury division of General Motors.

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Originally posted by alvbazan@Feb 6 2004, 05:32 AM
Hahaha, Cadillac is coming to get your AZZ.  Their awful designs probably don't help either.
I agree with you on the design part too. But did you also notice the way they reluctantly wanted to admit that Cadillac is now a threat to them too!!!!(economy my foot, its called lackluster design) I think its time for our german friends to "Wake up and smell the saurkraut" :woot2:
 

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<_< Oooh Booo Hoo BMW..... whine whine whine.... What's a littlle competition???
Mercedes accelerated the development of the new S because of Cadillac. BMW's gotta keep up. Lexus and Cadillac will be coming on strong in the next year or so.
 

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It's sad that Cadillac isn't considered the leader, kinda of being mentioned as "Oh yah, and Cadillac, too." It's the American market, damnit! Why are Germans and Japanese auto's ruling it?! (I'm not trying to sound TOO patriotic).
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I always thought that the "Ultimate Driving Machine" angle was a tenuous one for BMW to hang its hat on.

BMW pretty much built its entire message around the idea that they could make cars that go really fast and handle really precisely--not exactly rocket science. Any car company with enough R&D money can run a car around Nurburgring until they work out the kinks and get it just right.

Meanwhile, Cadillac was always the real innovator. It took real smarts to create the kind of silky smooth and refined ride that has always characterized Cadillac. While BMW was bragging about "road feel", (which I always took as an excuse for "cheesy suspension"), Cadillac was perfecting real driving breakthroughs like Road Sensing technology and real convenience luxuries like OnStar.

The problem for Cadillac, of course, was that silky smoothness and technical achievement couldn't compete with the popularity of the emerging bad-boy image that goes with owning a car that can perform well at ridiculous extremes. Cadillac styling, of course, wasn't exactly a hit with the younger set, either.

So, the folks at Cadillac simply drew up cars with more appealing style, ran them around a few racetracks to give them "Ultimate Driving Machine" handling, and threw in innovative Cadillac goodies to boot.

BMW's response? iDrive. Oooooh, a knob. Real innovative.

Lutz pegged it IMO--the future of the luxury market is Cadillac vs. Lexus. BMW will go off in its own "sport luxury" niche and lose some of its relevance. That might sound impossible to some folks at this point, but who in 1999 woulda' thought Cadillac showrooms would be filled with cars like the CTS and XLR, or that they would be talking about V12's and about playing in the six-figure space?
 

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Don't know bout u guys but, I would rather travel by Luxurious-Pogo-Stick than drive the proclaimed "ultimate Driving machine."

Image wize, I think BMWs are dorkey compared to Caddy

It also sucks that Lincoln is 90% dead(stagnant). Hopeing revival is done right! Go USA!
 

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I think Ford is still very much focused on getting the Ford brand turned around right now, but I suspect (hope?) that Mercury and Lincoln will get a big boost soon. The Lincoln LS is a very nice car, but I'd really like to see a Caddy-style revival with great products extending well into the stupid-expensive range.

As for BMW... well, I've never really considered BMW an aspirational brand. When I look at luxury cars, the first brand I consider is Audi (between Quattro, bullet-proof engines, and flat out luxury, Audi never ceases to amaze me). I'm waiting for Lincoln and Cadillac to jump on the AWD bandwagon, because after having owned a Quattro Audi, there's really no way I'm going back to a 2WD vehicle as my daily driver.
 

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Originally posted by markform@Feb 7 2004, 01:01 AM

Also, BMW (unlike many competitors) doesn't get 1/2 their sales from rebadged corporate clones.
Well, considering they are one of a few independent automakers out there, it's kinda hard to rebadge.
Then again... aren't the Mini and the 1 on the same platform? <_<

In either case, I think I'm in the minority here. I actually do like the current BMW designs. I do like the sleek yet muscular look of the 7. I don't care for the Microsoft Windows powered iDrive at all... and I'm not a technophobe. It has a very poor interface. And it's just poorly done. Otherwise, it's a great car. ANd it handles superbly.
 

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BMW is hardly innovative. It's only a matter of time untill BMW runs out of steam. They became the brand for jerks and people trying to impress others, and I think this will hurt them in the long run. I think a large part of their problem is that for "Ultimate Driving Machines" they sure do suck at acceleration, handling, et cetera, with the very notable exception of M-series cars. However, most people don't buy M-series cars, most people buy 325's or 330's, which, for the money, are simply not sporty or practical. Yay, I got a 35-45K car with 200 horsepower and the interior room of Corolla. These cars are the ones that turned me off to BMW. A friend rolled up in a 330. He took me for an unimpressive ride, and when I looked at the sticker, I realized: People don't buy these because they are nice cars, they buy them so they can show off how much money they spent.
 

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Originally posted by markform@Feb 7 2004, 01:01 AM
Gotta disagree with some of the anti BMW posts here.

If BMW didn't exist, do you really think Cadillac would be going back to RWD or building the CTS V? The whole reason for RWD in this segment is that BMW has gone from an asterick to a major competitor.

I think most car enthusiasts would agree that BMW is the most innovative luxury car maker of all. You may hate the occasional bad ideas/styling they come up with - but at least they have to gonads to innovate and be the first to market with alot of cool stuff....unlike some copy cats, like Lexus.

Also, BMW (unlike many competitors) doesn't get 1/2 their sales from rebadged corporate clones.
I must disagree with you. BMW is not, and has not been the only performance luxury brand in the past 10-20 years. Mercedes Benz has AMG and Audi has R. Its not all about BMW my friends, thats why Cadillac is trying to carve out its own niche with its V-Series line of cars. Not too harsh (like the Ms) and not too Soft (Like the Rs). I think Cadillac's closest competitor when it comes to performance orientation is Mercedes Benz AMG to be quite honest. I do not see BMW becoming a major luxury player in 10-20 years.
 

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I don't care about the luxury brands, cars most of us do not own. I want to hear that Honda and Toyota are worried about CHEVY. Are you listening GM.
 

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Originally posted by markform@Feb 7 2004, 06:01 AM
Gotta disagree with some of the anti BMW posts here.

If BMW didn't exist, do you really think Cadillac would be going back to RWD or building the CTS V? The whole reason for RWD in this segment is that BMW has gone from an asterick to a major competitor.

I think most car enthusiasts would agree that BMW is the most innovative luxury car maker of all. You may hate the occasional bad ideas/styling they come up with - but at least they have to gonads to innovate and be the first to market with alot of cool stuff....unlike some copy cats, like Lexus.

Also, BMW (unlike many competitors) doesn't get 1/2 their sales from rebadged corporate clones.
Oh please!!....have another beer dude.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Originally posted by thehemi@Feb 7 2004, 09:25 AM
I would drive a BMW way before a Caddy!
I see what you mean. I drove a Honda way before I drove a Cadillac. Most people tend to work their way up like that. B)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Originally posted by markform@Feb 7 2004, 01:01 AM

...BMW (unlike many competitors) doesn't get 1/2 their sales from rebadged corporate clones.
:huh:

I hope that wasn't a dig at Cadillac. :unsure:

To wit:

The CTS is a rebadged...what?

The SRX is a rebadged...what?

The XLR is a rebadged...what? (<= and please don't say something silly like, "the XLR is nothin' but a rebadged Corvette")

The SLS is a rebadged...what?

The DeVille is a rebadged...what?

Even if you're talking about other brands like Lexus, MB, Infiniti, Acura, etc., that argument still wouldn't make sense, i.e.

The Lexus LS is a rebadged...what?

The Lexus IS is a rebadged...what?

The Lexus GS is a rebadged...what?

The Lexus SC is a rebadged...what?

Even the GX and RX can't be called rebadged, even though they share platforms with the 4-Runner and Highlander, respectively.

If you mean platform sharing (as opposed to re-badging), I suspect you're very aware that every multi-brand automaker on the planet builds cars this way. If they didn't, people would talk about how business-stupid and design-inefficient they were.
 

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Cadilacs are re-baged cloned GMCs and chevys. Lexus are rebaged cloned toyotas. you do the math.

Warning! Humorios yet so true:

All right I confess. Most BMWs are much more cutting edge and refined than Caddys. But don't forget the important fact that I am just another one of the many GM loyal biosed idiots who would never consider a perfect opportunity from the competition (especially ford; found on road dead) if it came and punched me right in the face. I aint changing I tell ya! ;)

Caddylacks got Image. Image is God in the automotive industry.
 

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Originally posted by coolcaddy+Feb 9 2004, 03:18 AM--></div><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (coolcaddy @ Feb 9 2004, 03:18 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> <!--QuoteBegin-thehemi@Feb 7 2004, 09:25 AM
I would drive a BMW way before a Caddy!
I see what you mean. I drove a Honda way before I drove a Cadillac. Most people tend to work their way up like that. B) [/b][/quote]
How funny.

I never thought of myself as old enough to drive a Caddy yet until I saw the first media shots of the CTS. Next I took the 24 hour test drive and knew I had found what I was looking for.

I considered all the competitors, BMW, Lexus, Infiniti, et. al., but found nothing to compare with the overall package I got with my CTS.

I got lots of heat from my BMW/Lexus/Merced driving coworkers but I still don't mind. Not everyone can forgo the risk of peer acceptance to get something they really want and I am very happy with my purchase.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Originally posted by darrelld@Feb 11 2004, 01:35 PM
I never thought of myself as old enough to drive a Caddy yet until I saw the first media shots of the CTS. Next I took the 24 hour test drive and knew I had found what I was looking for.

I considered all the competitors, BMW, Lexus, Infiniti, et. al., but found nothing to compare with the overall package I got with my CTS.

I got lots of heat from my BMW/Lexus/Merced driving coworkers but I still don't mind. Not everyone can forgo the risk of peer acceptance to get something they really want and I am very happy with my purchase.
Talk about peer pressure, I bought my first Cadillac back in '96, before it was cool to own a Cadillac. B)

It was a used '94 STS, and even then, it was obvious to me that this car was superior to that year's ultra-cheesy 3-series and ridiculously overpriced Mercedes.

I got all kinds of heat from my BMW and Mercedes friends back then--not because they didn't like my STS, there was nothing bad they could say about it--but because I just wasn't cool like they were. The Geritol jokes were flowing aplenty.

These days, well, let's just say the shoe is on the other foot. Clearly, among my SoCal peers at least, the growing perception is that Mercedes is the passe' choice of the older set, BMW harkens back to the dot-com days and all the failures that go with that era, and successful folks are driving Cadillacs and Lexi.
 
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