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  #1  
Old 10-25-2004, 04:44 PM
Alex Baumann Alex Baumann is offline
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"The 1 Series will diminish the brand in the eyes of 7 Series buyers."

Quote:
"The 1 Series will diminish the brand in the eyes of 7 Series buyers."


Bob Lutz , GM Corp. Vice-Chairman

Discuss.




Source :

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine...6003_mz044.htm

A very interesting article, if you have the time, don't miss it.
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  #2  
Old 10-25-2004, 04:48 PM
JPinTO JPinTO is offline
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The 7 Series diminishes the brand in the eyes of this M driver.
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  #3  
Old 10-25-2004, 05:35 PM
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Robert A. Lutz, General Motors Corp. vice-chairman for product development, says Cadillac will not follow the path of German luxury brands in the march to obtain higher sales volumes: "After a couple of 1 Series, they'll have to bring in another brand on top to add prestige," he says. "The 1 Series will diminish the brand in the eyes of 7 Series buyers." Panke is adamant that future growth won't tarnish the BMW badge. "We are not competing with the mass market," he says.

Yeah Caddy has already gone down that road a few times though - the "Cavalier with a Caddy grill" Cimarron was probably the worst offender.

I don't think it is that big of an issue at BMW, or Lexus for that matter, since they both use a similar range of cars. There is usually enough differentiation between the vehicles to avoid too much band overlap; however I agree that the 1er could canibalize sales for 3ers here - that is if the 1er ever comes here. The 1er shares 60% of its parts with the 3er? Wow.
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  #4  
Old 10-25-2004, 05:40 PM
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3 series owners out number 7 series owners by almost 6 to 1. I'd venture to say that if the 1 series becomes as popular as the 3 series... (I doubt), the execs at BMW would then say 'who cares what the 7 series owners think!'.
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  #5  
Old 10-25-2004, 05:45 PM
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I don't think it's the 1er/7er relationship that's going to get BMW into trouble. BMW is trying to juggle a LOT these days. New product launches. New technologies. New customer demographics. New markets. Not to mention all the money and effort it takes behind the scenes; like the article mentions, R&D dollars, etc. All while trying to maintain (hopefully improve) existing things: Quality. Customer Service. Value (resale/residual value, perceived value). Performance. Durability. Availability. Styling. And integrate as much of these existing values into the new areas.

That's a LOT to juggle. And we're already seeing slippage in some areas. The more and further BMW allows these things to slip, the worse off they're going to be when they finally realize they've bitten off more than they can chew.

It's not as bad as the downward spiral that the Big3 went through in the late 70s/80s when they seemingly decided that they just plain didn't want to maintain and improve in any of these areas. And 15-20 years later, they're still suffering.
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  #6  
Old 10-25-2004, 05:47 PM
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Cadillac vs. GM vs. BMW

Lutz's statement ignores the obvious: Cadillac is not a car manufacturer; it is just one brand/product line in the GM group. They currently repackage vehicles from GMC, and they have used Chevy, Opel, and Olds components in the past. As a result, GM needs to maintain artificial limits on the product lines and even on the marques that dealers can carry in order to support the Cadillac pricing.

IMO, this is symptomatic of GM's problems, both in the US and in Europe.
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  #7  
Old 10-25-2004, 05:52 PM
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Nonsense

Does the A Class deminish the S Class? GM has no credibility anyway.
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  #8  
Old 10-25-2004, 05:52 PM
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Sort of like B-Y said, it's easy to say "We won't fall for that trap" when you can sell 1 series equivalents and call them Chevy's. I hardly think it's an apples to apples comparison.

I still like the CTS-V more than the new 5 though.
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  #9  
Old 10-25-2004, 05:56 PM
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Unless they forget to put the propellor badge on the hood, 7 series buyers should be easy to hold onto. Their car is butt ugly, overpriced and has a ridiculously complicated interior, yet they buy it.

I think GM lost more money last year than BMW makes in a year.
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  #10  
Old 10-25-2004, 06:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JPinTO
The 7 Series diminishes the brand in the eyes of this M driver.
The X5 diminished the brand more than the 1er will. A small car can be sporty in ways a SUV never can. What does Lutz know anyways? The 1er is needed for the rest of the world, places where a 3er is a mid-sized car.
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  #11  
Old 10-25-2004, 06:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwsqbm
The X5 diminished the brand more than the 1er will. A small car can be sporty in ways a SUV never can. What does Lutz know anyways? The 1er is needed for the rest of the world, places where a 3er is a mid-sized car.
And yes, I know, they've made a ton on money on them.
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  #12  
Old 10-25-2004, 07:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dawg90
Their car is butt ugly, overpriced and has a ridiculously complicated interior, yet they buy it.
Ugly, glad you think that way. This is the only reason you're not going to buy one, right? Complicated interior... could be a bit simpler, but still good enough. Overpriced? Are you even aware of competitor pricing in this price range? 7er is actually good value for the money, esp. comparing to the way outdated S class.
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  #13  
Old 10-25-2004, 07:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex Baumann
"The 1 Series will diminish the brand in the eyes of 7 Series buyers." Bob Lutz , GM Corp. Vice-Chairman
On this forum, the consensus is going to be that the 7er diminished the brand in the eyes of future 1 series and current E36 owners
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  #14  
Old 10-25-2004, 08:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rost12
Ugly, glad you think that way. This is the only reason you're not going to buy one, right? Complicated interior... could be a bit simpler, but still good enough. Overpriced? Are you even aware of competitor pricing in this price range? 7er is actually good value for the money, esp. comparing to the way outdated S class.
Yes, the whole segment is overpriced, but I guess I'll never understand the segment. To me, if you're gonna blow house downpayment kind of money on a car, it should be an object of desire, not some bloated ugly luxobarge.
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  #15  
Old 10-25-2004, 08:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rost12
Ugly, glad you think that way. This is the only reason you're not going to buy one, right? Complicated interior... could be a bit simpler, but still good enough. Overpriced? Are you even aware of competitor pricing in this price range? 7er is actually good value for the money, esp. comparing to the way outdated S class.
You can always tell the insecure luxocar buyers, for they feel the need to put down buyers of less expensive cars. Money never buys class, that's a given.
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  #16  
Old 10-25-2004, 09:37 PM
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While I think that bringing the 1er to the US could de-value the brand a bit I think it might just be the right car at the right time. As oil hurdles through $55 a barrel we might see more "mini" versions of the larger premium cars. As much as we don't want to admit it expensive oil is probably here to stay.

BMW could take a lot of business away from VW and Japanese brands in this segment. MBZ offers a small hatchback (I can't tell you the model...it's like the CLMKSLC something or other 230 Kompressor) and it doesn't make an S class any less bucks up than it is. It will be interesting to see what 1er we get (if any) and how it will effect 3er sales. I guess if 3er sales suffer because buyers opt for the 1er it's a wash for BMW if the profits keep rolling in.
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  #17  
Old 10-25-2004, 09:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dawg90
You can always tell the insecure luxocar buyers, for they feel the need to put down buyers of less expensive cars. Money never buys class, that's a given.
Having read rost12's post and your post about five times, I'm not seeing what you're implying. I do see, though, that you have some bitter contempt for buyers of more expensive cars and 7 owners in general.
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  #18  
Old 10-25-2004, 10:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARCUS545
While I think that bringing the 1er to the US could de-value the brand a bit I think it might just be the right car at the right time. As oil hurdles through $55 a barrel we might see more "mini" versions of the larger premium cars. As much as we don't want to admit it expensive oil is probably here to stay.

BMW could take a lot of business away from VW and Japanese brands in this segment. MBZ offers a small hatchback (I can't tell you the model...it's like the CLMKSLC something or other 230 Kompressor) and it doesn't make an S class any less bucks up than it is. It will be interesting to see what 1er we get (if any) and how it will effect 3er sales. I guess if 3er sales suffer because buyers opt for the 1er it's a wash for BMW if the profits keep rolling in.
A-class? B-class? There's also the GST, but I don't think that'll be small. smart car? Or do you mean the C-class coupe?

BTW, MB line up is pretty confusing: A, B, C, E, S, SLK, SL, CLK, CL, ML, G, GST, SLR, CLS, R, plus two vans.
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  #19  
Old 10-25-2004, 10:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwsqbm
The X5 diminished the brand more than the 1er will. A small car can be sporty in ways a SUV never can. What does Lutz know anyways? The 1er is needed for the rest of the world, places where a 3er is a mid-sized car.
LOL! Go drive a X5 4.4 or 4.8. And if you think I don't know what I'm talking about, I owned 3 series BMWs from 1986 to 2003.
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  #20  
Old 10-25-2004, 11:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rumratt
Yes, rost in particular is bitter toward those owning expensive cars.

(hint, look at his sig)
I was referring to Dawg90's post, which was a response to rost's post. (I know about rost's M5, what with all the tasty pics. )
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  #21  
Old 10-26-2004, 12:59 AM
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  #22  
Old 10-26-2004, 01:26 AM
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People that are looking at the 1-Series, for the most part, don't have 7-Series money.

BMW not only sells cars in the United States of America, but elsewhere, and my impression is that Europe, Asia and the Middle East are the primary markets for the 1-Series, with the US of A as more of an afterthought?

People in the US want one of two things, ideally both: size and power - just look at the average parking lot; you can't see my little Karl Bimmer for all the Excursions, GMC Denali's, Ford F150's, Honda Odysseys (240 HP) and the like!

The 1-Series is a transitional vehicle in the Minds Of Marketing - first, get the young buyers into the Mini Cooper or 1-Series, then the 23-34 year olds in a 3-Series (if they've been really good and saved their pennies, or have rich parents, a M3)

At 35 or so, with 'tax deductions' in tow, move them towards a 5-Series, the X3 or X5.

Once they hit Corvette Age, entice the buyer with a M5 or 645; as they approach the Ensure Time Of Life, and they can still drive, then get them into a 745.



(however, I'm a 1958 baby, and I have a 325i... )
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  #23  
Old 10-26-2004, 03:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SergioK
3 series owners out number 7 series owners by almost 6 to 1. I'd venture to say that if the 1 series becomes as popular as the 3 series... (I doubt), the execs at BMW would then say 'who cares what the 7 series owners think!'.
Who cares what Bob Lutz thinks? On this basis I think his world starts on the East Coast and ends on the West. Next
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  #24  
Old 10-26-2004, 03:48 AM
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The cheapest 1-serie is more expensive then the cheapest 3 serie in the Netherlands.
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  #25  
Old 10-26-2004, 07:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dawg90
You can always tell the insecure luxocar buyers, for they feel the need to put down buyers of less expensive cars. Money never buys class, that's a given.
Lack of money doesn't quite buy class either. And hey, I'm glad I fit your stereotype of the world. Anything to make it easier
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