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View Full Version : Are BMW's a status symbol/in a higher class?


tommyd
08-26-2003, 03:06 PM
I'd say that they are.

That is not to say that a person buys a BMW because they want to show off... rather... that BMW's are in a certain class of vehicle and have a certain reputation that affirms a sort of status.
Following this argument: i also believe that most (if not all) people who own a BMW own one partly for this reason, when there are comparable cars that are less expensive... what would drive you to spend the extra money otherwise than to own something that's from it's own being 'in a class of it's own', so to speak.

What do you think?

EDIT: This is not to say that BMW owners are elitest or snobs... i think it has more to do with wanting to own something that you consider "nice' even if it's more expensive... kinda like an LV keychain when you could have had comparable for cheaper...

Mr. The Edge
08-26-2003, 03:10 PM
nah, I think a LOT of folks here bought a BMW despite its image, not because of it.

EDIT: but the majority of BMW buyers? yeah, probably so.

Kaz
08-26-2003, 03:11 PM
nah, I think a LOT of folks here bought a BMW despite its image, not because of it.

But I highly doubt that's the case for the general (80%+) BMW-driving population in the US.

Plaz
08-26-2003, 03:12 PM
nah, I think a LOT of folks here bought a BMW despite its image, not because of it.


Exactly. I was always very averse to BMWs due to their image, and the image of those who "typically" drive them. But the consistently glowing reviews in all the mags convinced me to go drive one... and the rest was history.

But I wish there wasn't so much baggage attached to the roundel.

Plaz
08-26-2003, 03:14 PM
kinda like an LV keychain when you could have had comparable for cheaper...


I have contempt for those sort of items. Not only is everything Vuitton fugly as sin, but the ridiculous inflated prices of such designer wares, all for the sake of "status," really just makes me nauseous.

Mr. The Edge
08-26-2003, 03:14 PM
But I highly doubt that's the case for the general (80%+) BMW-driving population in the US.

yup :thumbup:

(see my edit)

tommyd
08-26-2003, 03:14 PM
Exactly. I was always very averse to BMWs due to their image, and the image of those who "typically" drive them. But the consistently glowing reviews in all the mags convinced me to go drive one... and the rest was history.

But I wish there wasn't so much baggage attached to the roundel.

Have i missed something? :eeps:
I admittedly didn't know a lot about BMW until i was ready to buy one... kind of a dream car that was a little out of reach...
What bad image does BMW have?
:dunno:

Mr. The Edge
08-26-2003, 03:15 PM
I have contempt for those sort of items. Not only is everything Vuitton fugly as sin, but the ridiculous inflated prices of such designer wares, all for the sake of "status," really just makes me nauseous.

you don't like my new interior? :(

http://www.foamcow.net/cabby/pics/gucciint.jpg

Mr. The Edge
08-26-2003, 03:16 PM
What bad image does BMW have?
:dunno:

That people are just buying them as status symbols.

Plaz
08-26-2003, 03:18 PM
you don't like my new interior? :(

http://www.foamcow.net/cabby/pics/gucciint.jpg


:rofl:

I saw that one (I think it was that one) up close and personal at the last bimmerfest. I nearly lost my (complimentary, provided by Cutter Motors) lunch. :D

in_d_haus
08-26-2003, 03:18 PM
I own a BMW because: (and ONLY because)

1) They are a well made car.

2) They are a safe car.

3) They give me the handling and performance I want for a reasonable price.

4) I like the styling.

Mr. The Edge
08-26-2003, 03:19 PM
I own a BMW because: (and ONLY because)

1) They are a well made car.

2) They are a safe car.

3) They give me the handling and performance I want for a reasonable price.

4) I like the styling.

Plaz
08-26-2003, 03:19 PM
That people are just buying them as status symbols.


And that we all drive like a-holes.

BmW4EveR330ci
08-26-2003, 03:20 PM
May I ask how you were able to get the GUCCI interior? I've seen some other people posting pics of Burberry and Louise Vuitton. Never seen one in person. But that sure is pimping.

btw, how much for custom order if you don't mind sharing.

tommyd
08-26-2003, 03:20 PM
I have contempt for those sort of items. Not only is everything Vuitton fugly as sin, but the ridiculous inflated prices of such designer wares, all for the sake of "status," really just makes me nauseous.

I'm a bargain shopper myself. I only buy LV as a gift... but i have to admit, albeit pricey... the quality is exceptional. My epi-leather (no monograms) keychain (gift) has lasted me a looong time without any signs of wear. Cheaper ones i've owned tend to change shape or lose stitching over a short time... though i'm sure there's a middle ground somewhere...
(someone stop me from hijacking my thread) :rofl:

tommyd
08-26-2003, 03:22 PM
That people are just buying them as status symbols.
:bustingup :bustingup :bustingup :bustingup :bustingup :bustingup

Mr. The Edge
08-26-2003, 03:25 PM
May I ask how you were able to get the GUCCI interior? I've seen some other people posting pics of Burberry and Louise Vuitton. Never seen one in person. But that sure is pimping.

btw, how much for custom order if you don't mind sharing.

:eek:

(sorry, that's not my car)

Jeff_DML
08-26-2003, 03:31 PM
Exactly. I was always very averse to BMWs due to their image, and the image of those who "typically" drive them. But the consistently glowing reviews in all the mags convinced me to go drive one... and the rest was history.

But I wish there wasn't so much baggage attached to the roundel.


:beerchug:

BMW was originally not on the list of potential cars because of the image/stereotype. Then I thought, who cares what people think, we are buying the car for ourselves not anybody else...and the rest is history

Mr. Sparkle
08-26-2003, 03:33 PM
BMW was originally not on the list of potential cars because of the image/stereotype. Then I thought, who cares what people think, we are buying the car for ourselves not anybody else...and the rest is history

Same here.

Jeff_DML
08-26-2003, 03:33 PM
also I wouldnt consider BMW in a "higher class" since 325i are everywhere where i live, $299 lease deals :D

Brashland
08-26-2003, 03:41 PM
For me the #1 aspect is that it's the BEST looking convertible out there. I could not imagine my driving any other car that wasn't overpriced (solara), too common (sebring), a high school car (wrangler or mustang). What's left then?

Now I admit, being a young professional I did want something that helped portray that image, but my 323 is just holds the road so well.

TD
08-26-2003, 03:44 PM
Add me to the list of folks who buy BMWs IN SPITE OF their image. Offer me another car with the same feel, 4 doors, RWD and a manual tranny (and that's not fugly) and I'll buy it.

I bought my car for me. And I am totally opposed to buying things for their brand status.

Mr. Sparkle
08-26-2003, 03:44 PM
also I wouldnt consider BMW in a "higher class" since 325i are everywhere where i live, $299 lease deals :D

Be different. Buy a Honda.

Jeff_DML
08-26-2003, 03:45 PM
Be different. Buy a Honda.

new accord is pretty popular too :p

flashinthepan
08-26-2003, 03:46 PM
I wanted a convertible -

This is my 1st BMW, the only other new convertible I like is the Mercedes SL..and at $85K+ I actually felt the 330cic at $45K is a reasonable price for the vehicle. Granted not as fully equipped as the Mercedes SL..but still a very nice car.

I wish there was no "preppy - Yuppie" stigma associated with the BMW line of cars, but I buy what I like etc...

The Roadstergal
08-26-2003, 03:52 PM
Be different. Buy a Honda.

NSX. :D

Alex Baumann
08-26-2003, 03:54 PM
Which models are we speaking about ?

Jeff_DML
08-26-2003, 04:00 PM
NSX. :D

sure, got 90k lying around for me :rolleyes:

Artslinger
08-26-2003, 04:27 PM
Hell... I almost didn't buy my BMW because of the image/stereotype status of the car.

xspeedy
08-26-2003, 05:17 PM
I am buying a BMW because I consider myself a driving enthusiast that has matured. I have a 330i on order for ED and I'm moving up from an Integra.

If you look hard for a car that truly fulfills the category of sports sedan, you won't find much. The BMW 3 performed the best and that is why I have one on order. In fact, the BMW is cheaper than the Lexus IS. Also, the BMW has the best resale value, so if I want out in a year, it won't break the bank. I would have preferred a Honda/Acura product, but since Honda isn't serious about making a performance sedan, I'm switching teams. I'm sick of FWD.

The HACK
08-26-2003, 05:36 PM
sure, got 90k lying around for me :rolleyes:

Used '91s go for ~$24K now a days. :thumbup:

bmw325
08-26-2003, 06:08 PM
Bought mine for
-looks
-RWD
-availability of manual
-handling
-practicality

I couldn't find anything else that combined all of these attributes.

I bought my car in spite of the image. I'm quite happy if no one knows I drive a BMW.

kdshapiro
08-26-2003, 07:28 PM
Interesting question. Which has more status a $45,000 F150 SVT or a $30,000 stripper 325i? Good now that we settled that question. I will also add that I don't find cars to be prestigious. They can be expensive, sought after, have a reputation of it's own, rare and exclusive, but not prestigious, at least to me. :tsk: I got my BMW for the following reasons:

1. I became interested in them in the '80s because they were hot cars.
2. They are timeless works of art that don't age. A BMW is instantly recognizable from any angle.
3. They have a reputation for building high quality, performance cars that provide the driver with an unparalleled driving experience.
4. BMWs don't need performance mods to experience the driving experience.
5. The later model BMWs are every bit as reliable as their Japanese counterparts, such as the G35. Read the Infiniti boards to see the list of issues people report. Mine did not disappoint in that regard.

In summary, I have no problem in spending a little more to get something that is better: restaurants, suits, or cars. All depreciating assets. It's amazing to me that people will blow hundreds of dollars on expensive restaurants time in and time out and then say BMWs are overpriced. :mad:

SergioK
08-26-2003, 08:34 PM
Interesting question. Which has more status a $45,000 F150 SVT or a $30,000 stripper 325i?

Very good point! :thumbup: Most people with that 'attitude' towards BMW owners can't or don't comprehend that perspective.

Fuzzypuppy
08-27-2003, 12:01 AM
Oh, get over it.

Getting a BMW "despite" its image is as asinine as getting one for what it says about you. All high end cars come with some "stigma" if you want to view it as such. You don't think Porsche or Ferrari has some stereotype implications?

Saying that you got a BMW despite the image puts you only half a step short of the sort of people who buy Saabs... yes, I'd like to buy an inferior, quirky, unreliable vehicle (that costs just as much as a BMW) just to tell the world I'm too embarassed to buy a BMW because of what people might think of me.

[By the way, is there any reason in the world to buy a Saab other than to try to set yourself apart from the BMW crowd in a fit of reverse-snobbishness?]

tommyd
08-27-2003, 03:24 AM
Which models are we speaking about ?


I wasn't thinking about specific models when i posted this thread... just the bmw brand.

Interesting, but i never heard or was concerned about negative stigma about bmw's or bmw owners... Lots of good reasons given to why you would own a bmw... but not a single person will admit to owning one BECAUSE it's a bmw.... but then BECAUSE it's a bmw, there are a lot of good reasons to own one. catch-22 so this might have been a pointless thread.
Can't argue with the styling defenses though... :thumbup:

Someone mentioned moving UP to a bmw... isn't that classing the vehicle? If we sell our Acura 3.2 or some such and buy a 325... (or 330), are we moving up... or sideways... or is this irrelevant?
(i know there are differences... but bear with me on the generalization).

I hate to say it but i guess money is a big factor in this too isn't it? I mean, if someone has to make some financial sacrifice to own a bmw over a honda, then they'd class the car higher than someone who'd have no financial hardship in buying one if they so choose.
(i.e. i can afford the 3er right now... but not a seven... while someone else owns a 7, maybe a couple of 3er's for the kids... etc).

tommyd
08-27-2003, 03:29 AM
Oh, get over it.

Getting a BMW "despite" its image is as asinine as getting one for what it says about you. All high end cars come with some "stigma" if you want to view it as such. You don't think Porsche or Ferrari has some stereotype implications?

Saying that you got a BMW despite the image puts you only half a step short of the sort of people who buy Saabs... yes, I'd like to buy an inferior, quirky, unreliable vehicle (that costs just as much as a BMW) just to tell the world I'm too embarassed to buy a BMW because of what people might think of me.

[By the way, is there any reason in the world to buy a Saab other than to try to set yourself apart from the BMW crowd in a fit of reverse-snobbishness?]


It's not so much the stigma that's attached to the car/carmaker, which this thread seems to be moving towards...
My question is really if anyone who owns/bought a bmw did so because they wanted a higher class of vehicle (thus considering it a higher class of vehicle).
even a smidgen?

Someone mentioned they were very common, which is true. I see so many more 3'ers these days than i used too... but does it being as common as a honda civic make it the same class of vehicle? (generalizations here... work with me)... :D

EDIT: my cousin owned a Saab... thought it was pretty cool...
kinda like one of those: "hey that's neat! what's it do?" type deals..
:rofl:

Pinecone
08-27-2003, 03:54 AM
I agree manyBMWs are bought by people as status symbols. They do garner some form of mystique. Funny hting is many Lexus and other buyers want a BMW, but figure they can't afford one. Never lookingto find out they could have had a BMW for less moeny. :)

And I personally know people who did this.

If it wasn't for the M versions, I wouldn't buy a BMW because of the baggage of all those who bought because of status, not because of performance, handling, quality, fun factor, etc.

Most people who hit these boards are NOT in the category of status buyers.

Now the guy who wrote the letter to Roundel that he didn't like DIY, competition, old model coverage, etc, IS in that category.. :)

OBS3SSION
08-27-2003, 05:50 AM
Yes, I think that the average American cattle.. er, I mean consumer (why do I keep saying that? :rolleyes: ) buys the BMW for the roundel. Or, if they don't own one, they view a BMW as this sort of elite car. Personally, I bought my first Bimmer because I've always loved the styling of BMWs, and wanted one (especially before they are all Bangled.) The BMW driving characteristics are certainly an asset as well, and the second reason why I own one. I'd be lying if I said the roundel had nothing to do with my wanting one.

People approach me and make various comments about me, the car, and how much I must make. When I take a moment to explain that many SUVs and trucks cost more than my fully loaded BMW, they begin to sober up. When I explain to them that this is my wife and my only car, and that most couples spend more on two cars and associated costs than I do on mine, they finally realize that I'm not some elitist snob yuppie.

I bought my BMW knowing the roundel comes with certain misconceptions and connotations. I decided that I didn't care what other people would think. I wanted the car, and that is all that mattered to me.

tommyd
08-27-2003, 06:30 AM
Yes, I think that the average American cattle.. er, I mean consumer (why do I keep saying that? :rolleyes: ) buys the BMW for the roundel. Or, if they don't own one, they view a BMW as this sort of elite car. Personally, I bought my first Bimmer because I've always loved the styling of BMWs, and wanted one (especially before they are all Bangled.) The BMW driving characteristics are certainly an asset as well, and the second reason why I own one. I'd be lying if I said the roundel had nothing to do with my wanting one.

People approach me and make various comments about me, the car, and how much I must make. When I take a moment to explain that many SUVs and trucks cost more than my fully loaded BMW, they begin to sober up. When I explain to them that this is my wife and my only car, and that most couples spend more on two cars and associated costs than I do on mine, they finally realize that I'm not some elitist snob yuppie.

I bought my BMW knowing the roundel comes with certain misconceptions and connotations. I decided that I didn't care what other people would think. I wanted the car, and that is all that mattered to me.

well said. :clap: Much respect to admitting, even if it was just a eensy-weensy bit, that the roundel did have something to do with buying the car...
now that i think about it... there are some people with these ridiculous misconceptions aren't there? I never thought about it before, but i did get a lot of those types of comments after i got my car...
oh well... as you said, in the end all that matters is if you're happy with your decision... :thumbup:

mbr129
08-27-2003, 06:48 AM
I bought my 330i for a variety of reasons (not in order of importance)

-I love German engineering (I already own an old Benz)
-I wanted a manual tranny
-I wanted a high-performance, fun car
-I wanted to do ED (FYI Mercedes, Volvo have this too)
-I wanted a new car with a good warranty
-I didn't want to spend too much
-I wanted a car that looked good, felt comfortable, wasn't too big, and had RWD.
-Of all the contenders, the 330i was the best.

I, to some degree, have always been partial against BMW (for reasons explained before and too long to repeat).

Am I proud to own a BMW? Sure, I am proud that I can afford a nice car, be it whatever brand it may be. Most of the time I want to hide the fact that I own a BMW, because I feel like a spoiled brat. Then of course, people are surprised to know I got a manual tranny and no leather, as well as stiff ride.

tommyd
08-27-2003, 06:57 AM
I agree, the 330 is in a class of it's own... :D

wow! you won you're car? the 2003? that's awesome! how?

mbr129
08-27-2003, 06:59 AM
I agree, the 330 is in a class of it's own... :D

wow! you won you're car? the 2003? that's awesome! how?

Typo... wiseguy. I fixed it. I thought it was pretty obvious.

Didn't win it, bought it. :)

tommyd
08-27-2003, 07:11 AM
Typo... wiseguy. I fixed it. I thought it was pretty obvious.

Didn't win it, bought it. :)


:bustingup

no seriously though... i thought you won it! That'd still be very cool! Then i'd have enough money to buy another one! bwaahaha!

OBS3SSION
08-27-2003, 09:30 AM
:bustingup

no seriously though... i thought you won it! That'd still be very cool! Then i'd have enough money to buy another one! bwaahaha!

I won mine, but the stupid raffle ticket cost me ~$45,000 :p :rofl:

WLN1951B
08-27-2003, 09:34 AM
I bought my 325 because it drives like no other car I have owned or tested..very simple. Yes, they are comparatively pricey but life is short. And please, someone give me a definition of value that means the same to everyone. My 2cents :rolleyes:

Toast
08-27-2003, 10:57 AM
...

Someone mentioned they were very common, which is true. I see so many more 3'ers these days than i used too... but does it being as common as a honda civic make it the same class of vehicle? (generalizations here... work with me)... :D

...

The fact that Vancouver has more 3 series than Honda Civic doesn't automatically make them "the same class" of vehicle. But it does make the car less exclusive/less special, so its not really (and shouldn't be considered) a status symbol anymore. :) But for other parts of Canada it might be a different story. Last time I drove to Calgary and left the car in front of my friends' place, people (in the age group of ~20-30) are doing EMMERGENCY stops to pull over and get off to check out my car. :rofl: And whenever I drive in the city, I get weird stares/looks all the time.

You can probably tell the one who buys a BMW to "drive" are the ones who get the sport package (in most cases). But I would say most people on this board buys it because of driving dynamics more than anything else. :thumbup:

daghostryder
08-27-2003, 12:21 PM
I think it's a culmination of all. In my area where I grew up, BayShore, LongIsland all the kids I went to school with "preps" drove BMW, Sabb, volvo so yes I at an early age aspired for one because of the "status". However I got older went to college and got a job and had to pay my own way and to buy a car for "status" was and is silly. However I always wanted one. My first car was a saturn and during that time I became big on SAFETY which led me back to BMW. Long story short I bought one for the SAFETY, performance, affordability (in comparrison to other vehicles) solid standing and last but not least the style. BMW has always has sexy lines, although bangle is slowly destroyingthat in my opinion. Oh well such is life

Technic
08-27-2003, 02:43 PM
I came from owning Mazdas to owning BMW's, so far it's 3 to 4 (3 Mazdas and 4 BMW's). What's the link? It is the way they drive... no safety, no status, just the drive. And to make this experience much better, BMW's have this agressive and attractive styling that does not get dull as the years pass. No Mercedes, Audi, Volks, or even the new Mazdas influence me as much as BMW's. Bangle maybe does not want me as a customer any more, but at least he is not messing with the way they drive...

I upgrade the model with each BMW owned, from a '92 318i to a '02 330i. My next one will be a M3 (or at least that's what I repeat to myself every year). It is simple choice, you get what you like and afford; if the BMW brand had in the past -or current- an image problem of yuppiness or whatever, that's something that in effect have kept the brand alive by increasing its sales. For that alone I will say thank you very much, yuppies!

I still remember the times that I drove in the Autobahn at 128mph in the 318i and saying to myself "this is a great car." And the best part was when I got out and looked at it and said to myself "... and looks good too".

And to this day, I still say the same thing... :thumbup:

Guest84
08-27-2003, 03:19 PM
nah, I think a LOT of folks here bought a BMW despite its image, not because of it.

EDIT: but the majority of BMW buyers? yeah, probably so.

True. The LAST car I would consider buying was a BMW because of its "reputation" but then I drove one...I overcame the sterotype.

LeucX3
08-27-2003, 04:30 PM
If i wanted a car with high class and prestige, i would have stuck with my 01 Volvo S60 T5. But that just wasn't the case; i wanted a car that drove well and BMWs fit the bill perfectly. I cant' drive any other car because no other car is as fun to drive as a BMW. (Well, that i can afford.)

bmw325
08-27-2003, 10:44 PM
Is buying a car for status (meaning you want other people to think more highly of you) really ever successful? I guess I just can't imagine seeing someone's car and thinking more highly of them as a result. I might respect (or condemn) their taste.. but that's about it. I could also imagine lots of people resenting that someone has a nice car. But I guess I can't really imagine the scenario where someone sees a nice car and thinks "wow, i'm really impressed with the person dirving it".

tommyd
08-28-2003, 03:19 AM
Is buying a car for status (meaning you want other people to think more highly of you) really ever successful? I guess I just can't imagine seeing someone's car and thinking more highly of them as a result. I might respect (or condemn) their taste.. but that's about it. I could also imagine lots of people resenting that someone has a nice car. But I guess I can't really imagine the scenario where someone sees a nice car and thinks "wow, i'm really impressed with the person dirving it".


Not my point at all... but it's a bit hard to explain because of the 'catch-22' i explained earlier.

I maintain that the BMW is a certain class of vehicle...
take a ford, honda, vw, bmw, volvo, aston martin, ferrari, bentley...
can you honestly say that these cars are the same? nope.
you'd HAVE to put them into some sort of order which you believe them to be the best (taking generaliztion on the make and not on specific models). If you do this, you've classed the BMW... you probably have in your mind a number of vehicle makes that are in the same or similar class.

Now, i also maintain that there are many cars that compete with the BMW, let's take the 330 for example. Of these competitors, there are many that may have some 'technical' ratings that are higher and at a much lessor cost. Some of these cars may even be categorized in a lower 'class' by your definition.
So to forgo this cheaper option, for what comparably can be said to be the same (as a generalization), do we do so partly because it's a BMW?

There have already been posts about stylling and performance and safety... and the cost is sometimes not that much really (more for some than for others)... so catch-22...
UNLESS... there's admittance that 99% of drivers do NOT track the car, do NOT need or use anywhere near the max capabilities of the vehicle, that for most it's just a daily driver. And for this purpose, a $35,000.00 Honda Accord would suffice just as well as a $55,000.00 BMW 330ci. (prices in CDN$ w/ comparable options). Styling, performance, safety: if not in the Accord, then a car within the same price range will probably come close to what you're looking for. As a daily driver, there is NO need to own a BMW330ci...
Performance and safety should be too close to be an issue worth $20K... How about stylling... is that worth $20K?
The Honda is a pretty nice car so what's in the 330ci that's worth $20k to you?... that you must have?... that the Honda just doesn't offer?
Styling? ...you're making excuses. of course, some people can afford a $20k decision based on styling.
Performance? ...do you need it?
Safety? ...most cars in all classes these days are pretty close i think.
But we all own a BMW... so why?... it's because: if only just a little bit... just a smidgen... just 1/1000 of one percent, it a BMW.

(plus it's ALSO a very nice car!)

EDIT: Also, i really couldn't care less what other people think of me if they base their decision on the car i drive...

xspeedy
08-28-2003, 09:24 AM
Compare it to wine. I don't really drink wine, so I can't tell the difference between a cheap $10 bottle at the local grocery store, and something that sells for $100 at a fine restaurant. So, because of my lack of "taste", I would never appreciate a $100 bottle of wine.

If I see someone order a $100 bottle of wine at a restaurant, I'll think he is a snob. I would think he could just order the cheap house wine for $20 a bottle. Well, he could be a wine drinker that appreciates the quality that comes from the better wine.

We Bimmerfest BMW owners know about the driving experience. We know about handling neutrality, roll control, braking, and vehicle technology. Since we are very educated about these things, and since we are driving "experts", we appreciate better driving dynamics. Therefore, we will spend a bit more to buy a BMW over a Honda Accord. Well, your typical automobile un-enthusiast doesn't know the difference between under/oversteer and will think of BMW owners as snobs. This person just wants a vehicle that is reliable and comfortable and could be just as happy with a Camry and not see what all the fuss is about with BMWs. He'll think BMW owners are snobs because they too could be just as well off with a Camry.

tommyd
08-28-2003, 09:43 AM
Compare it to wine. I don't really drink wine, so I can't tell the difference between a cheap $10 bottle at the local grocery store, and something that sells for $100 at a fine restaurant. So, because of my lack of "taste", I would never appreciate a $100 bottle of wine.

If I see someone order a $100 bottle of wine at a restaurant, I'll think he is a snob. I would think he could just order the cheap house wine for $20 a bottle. Well, he could be a wine drinker that appreciates the quality that comes from the better wine.

We Bimmerfest BMW owners know about the driving experience. We know about handling neutrality, roll control, braking, and vehicle technology. Since we are very educated about these things, and since we are driving "experts", we appreciate better driving dynamics. Therefore, we will spend a bit more to buy a BMW over a Honda Accord. Well, your typical automobile un-enthusiast doesn't know the difference between under/oversteer and will think of BMW owners as snobs. This person just wants a vehicle that is reliable and comfortable and could be just as happy with a Camry and not see what all the fuss is about with BMWs. He'll think BMW owners are snobs because they too could be just as well off with a Camry.

Nice analogy. :thumbup:

however: (there had to be a however of course)
i'm not sure the example applies. A $20 bottle of wine serves the same purpose as a $200 bottle... much as (and i know i'm gonna eat it on this one) a honda accord will serve the same purpose as a 330i. That is, for the majority of people... large majority.
For those that are concerned with the points you made, they don't spend a 'little' more, they spend a 'lot' more IMO. (For some, the difference isn't as substantial as for others).
I could be wrong on this, but couldn't a Honda Accord with a number of aftermarket parts outperform the 330i?... for an extra say, $20k cdn? So if you're an enthusiast who cares about these things, wouldn't the Honda Accord with after market parts be a better option?

I wholly admit that part of the reason i own a BMW was because i wanted to be part of that not-so exclusive club... but not because i wanted to be admired and thought it put me in a higher station of life... It was for me personally... and i really believe this is true of a lot of people... i just don't understand why it's so hard to admit? :dunno:

xspeedy
08-28-2003, 10:12 AM
Nice analogy. :thumbup:

however: (there had to be a however of course)
i'm not sure the example applies. A $20 bottle of wine serves the same purpose as a $200 bottle... much as (and i know i'm gonna eat it on this one) a honda accord will serve the same purpose as a 330i. That is, for the majority of people... large majority.
For those that are concerned with the points you made, they don't spend a 'little' more, they spend a 'lot' more IMO. (For some, the difference isn't as substantial as for others).
I could be wrong on this, but couldn't a Honda Accord with a number of aftermarket parts outperform the 330i?... for an extra say, $20k cdn? So if you're an enthusiast who cares about these things, wouldn't the Honda Accord with after market parts be a better option?

I wholly admit that part of the reason i own a BMW was because i wanted to be part of that not-so exclusive club... but not because i wanted to be admired and thought it put me in a higher station of life... It was for me personally... and i really believe this is true of a lot of people... i just don't understand why it's so hard to admit? :dunno:

Here in Austin, TX, there are probably more 3-series than there are Honda Accords. Other Austinites can chime in on this one. So if you buy one, it is surely not for exclusivity.

Secondly, I don't think you can economically get a Honda Accord to handle better than a BMW. It is a FWD vs RWD thing. It is an issue of weight distribution as well. Finally, going aftermarket has many implications. It is expensive, it kills resale value on the car, can possibly kill the factory warranty, and is often unreliable. You lower the car, and you get tire rub. You put in aftermarket exhaust and you get a loud booming sound. The list goes on.

If you can strike a good deal on BMW, it really doesn't cost more than the competition. What really yanks my chain is how what used to be economical family sedans have become so expensive. If you buy a loaded Maxima or Camry, you often spend $30,000. I just could not see spending that kind of cash on a car that handles so poorly. I'd rather spend a few thousand more and get something truly satisfying.

If you compare the 325i to the Lexus IS, the BMW is actually cheaper, provided you can do an ED on it. Lexus would like to compare itself against the 330i, but in reality, the performance is closer to the 325i.

LeucX3
08-28-2003, 10:21 AM
I wholly admit that part of the reason i own a BMW was because i wanted to be part of that not-so exclusive club...

So does that mean you'd be happy with a 2001 e46? :rolleyes:

bmw325
08-28-2003, 10:23 AM
Secondly, I don't think you can economically get a Honda Accord to handle better than a BMW. It is a FWD vs RWD thing. It is an issue of weight distribution as well. Finally, going aftermarket has many implications. It is expensive, it kills resale value on the car, can possibly kill the factory warranty, and is often unreliable. You lower the car, and you get tire rub. You put in aftermarket exhaust and you get a loud booming sound. The list goes on.


In addition to the points you made--
let's say you could get a Honda Accord to technically "out perform" a BMW model for less than the cost differentail between them. By "out perform", I mean that it would have more grip on a skidpad, do a slalom faster, brake in a shorter distance, and accelerate faster. There's still a "feel" issue. If you care about such things, you'll probably prefer the more un-adulterated steering feel of RWD vs FWD steering. You may also care about the better "feeling" of balance in car that has a 50/50 vs 60/40 distribution.

Anyway, I think there are plenty of reasons aside from perceived "class of vehicle", or "status" to buy a BMW.

tommyd
08-28-2003, 11:14 AM
So does that mean you'd be happy with a 2001 e46? :rolleyes:


I'm not sure i get this? I think i'd be happy with a 2001... why not? Actually started out looking for a used one before picking up the one i have... :dunno:

in other news:
Exclusivity as i mentioned was not to be taken literally as in "i have one and not many other people do"... it's more of an intangible that i'm finding it difficult to explain...

we could debate the 'performance and styling' angle to death, but it's not the point i'm trying to make. I don't think it's hard to explain but i guess it is... :dunno:
I still maintain that for a daily driver, these are not important issues... if Honda was a rear-wheel drive, i'd still want a BMW cuz i think they're nicer and are an up-class car... If i had the money, i'd want a bentley... moving up in class again IMO...

There ARE MANY reasons above assumed 'status' (i should lose the status symbol part.. it's misleading) and 'class' to own a BMW, but to a small degree, i think many people own a bmw to be in a higher 'class' of vehicle... which comes with it many benefits but which also comes with it a substantial increase in cost. Now if only some of them would admit it!! :angel:
from a previous post of mine:
"take a ford, honda, vw, bmw, volvo, aston martin, ferrari, bentley...
can you honestly say that these cars are the same? nope.
you'd HAVE to put them into some sort of order which you believe them to be the best (taking generaliztion on the make and not on specific models). If you do this, you've classed the BMW..."

I agree totally with what everyone is saying... i'm just dumbfounded that everyone has a hard time admitting that part of the reason they own a bmw... just a little part... and eensy weensy part... is that it IS a bmw... a little bit of a prize, a treat for yourself... etc. etc.

but whatever, it's not important neways... as long as you're happy with what you got! :thumbup:

xspeedy
08-28-2003, 11:21 AM
however: (there had to be a however of course)
i'm not sure the example applies. A $20 bottle of wine serves the same purpose as a $200 bottle... much as (and i know i'm gonna eat it on this one) a honda accord will serve the same purpose as a 330i.

I forgot to respond to this in my earlier post. It depends on what you define "purpose". If it is to satisfy a discriminating palate, then I don't think the purpose is met equally between the cheap and good wines. Likewise the car. That was the point of my previous post. If the purpose is to get you drunk or to get you from point A-B, then it is met the same. If the purpose is to quench your thirst, then a glass of water would be better.

You see, for us, I think the purpose of a car goes beyond getting us from point A-B. If that was the only purpose, we would all be driving Kias. The purpose for my car is the above, but add to that the purpose of satisfying my requirement to have fun behind the wheel - the joy of driving. This is where sports cars come from.

tommyd
08-28-2003, 12:56 PM
I forgot to respond to this in my earlier post. It depends on what you define "purpose". If it is to satisfy a discriminating palate, then I don't think the purpose is met equally between the cheap and good wines. Likewise the car. That was the point of my previous post. If the purpose is to get you drunk or to get you from point A-B, then it is met the same. If the purpose is to quench your thirst, then a glass of water would be better.

You see, for us, I think the purpose of a car goes beyond getting us from point A-B. If that was the only purpose, we would all be driving Kias. The purpose for my car is the above, but add to that the purpose of satisfying my requirement to have fun behind the wheel - the joy of driving. This is where sports cars come from.


all very true... i'm probably over-generalizing my question. catch22.
can't explain my obviously off-angled perspective... so i give up. :D

kdshapiro
08-28-2003, 01:31 PM
Here in Austin, TX, there are probably more 3-series than there are Honda Accords.

There are certain blocks in Ca. where people are slumming when they take out the Bentley and their neighboors want to know if they lost money in the market when they take out the Bentley to save gas. :cry: I really hate the expression, there are more Car X's, than Car Y's in a certain geographic area, where Car X costs more than Car Y. With the implicated sub-text of course. There may be more Car X because people like to buy it over Car Y. Sheesh. In my area there are more S500s than Civics, but there are also more Honda Accords than Civics, what does that prove?

hynt20
08-28-2003, 02:38 PM
Exactly. I was always very averse to BMWs due to their image, and the image of those who "typically" drive them. But the consistently glowing reviews in all the mags convinced me to go drive one... and the rest was history.

But I wish there wasn't so much baggage attached to the roundel.


I know I am going to get some stick for this... but...........


I didn't buy into the "hype" of the Ultimate Driving Machine, etc etc....

Always thought it was all BS.... and as a result I never went near a BMW dealership either here or in the UK.

Anway to cut a long story short..... I purchased a 98 STS, was fairly happy with it and decided to get into a newer one and got a 2001 STS, this turned out to be the worst car I have ever had... So on some advice I crossed over the lot and took a 530 for a test drive..... Well I was hooked... ordered a 540i 6-speed and I can truely honestly say that I am born again !! This has been the best car I have ever owned and is the only car that I can say that with every mile I like the car more and more.

I didn't buy it because of what people think I bought it because of the way it drives and how I feel about driving it.

oh..... and it's funny how many people have said that they like the BMW over the STS. Hmm where were they years ago when I bought my first STS ???

Its a shame I didn't go test drive a BMW years ago...