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Old 12-15-2010, 04:21 PM
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Is Infiniti what BMW Used to Be?

Here's an interesting article I found from a link somewhere (maybe even UCP?)

The author posits that Inifiniti is becoming what BMW used to be - the enthusiast sport-luxury brand.

I recently read a review comparing the old A6 (with the new supercharged 3L), the M37, and the F10 5 Series.

The BMW was the least involving of the three and was softer - as the E60 was softer than the E39. BMW seems to be moving more towards the Mercedes end of the sport-luxury spectrum; that is, luxury over sport (the epitome of this being Lexus). Infiniti's M37 rocked a solid high-revving naturally aspirated 6 cylinder engine - NA engines often being the selection of choice for enthusiast drives. The F10 actually finished last in the review, and the Audi took the crown.

I traditionally saw the Big 3 German luxury makers on a spectrum - BMW being the most sporty, Mercedes the most luxurious, and Audi in the middle. Throw in Infiniti and Lexus, and maybe you'd have something like this:

<<<Increasing Sport---Increasing Luxury>>>

Infiniti/BMW - Audi - Mercedes - Lexus

This is a generalization, but it seems to me that especially amongst the more base models (Infiniti doesn't even compete with the M cars in many respects), that Infiniti is in many ways becoming like the BMW of old.

How do you guys feel about all this?
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Old 12-15-2010, 04:34 PM
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Not sure if I can trust a review where the A6 won also considering involvement, but then again I don't know much about Infinitis first hand, and I don't think I ever read a review from a magazine/journalist I consider as reliable.

Wouldn't mind if what Cameron is saying is true, actually, I dislike BMW more and more as days go by.

Unfortunately for Infiniti, Europeans are pretty dumb when it comes to new car companies.
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Old 12-15-2010, 05:06 PM
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Sure, why not?

I haven't been happy with BMW's styling, I'm not surprised someone's not happy with BMW's driving dynamics.

I haven't driven either cars, so I can't pass judgment.

So in any case, good job Infiniti, making interesting cars.

Shame on you Toyota and Honda.
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Old 12-15-2010, 05:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kitdy View Post

I recently read a review comparing the old A6 (with the new supercharged 3L), the M37, and the F10 5 Series.

The BMW was the least involving of the three
tells you everything about the article right there
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Old 12-15-2010, 05:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeonOfTheDead View Post
Not sure if I can trust a review where the A6 won also considering involvement, but then again I don't know much about Infinitis first hand, and I don't think I ever read a review from a magazine/journalist I consider as reliable.

Wouldn't mind if what Cameron is saying is true, actually, I dislike BMW more and more as days go by.

Unfortunately for Infiniti, Europeans are pretty dumb when it comes to new car companies.
I don't trust reviews too much as advertising dollars often dictates results.

I will dig up the review so y'all can read it.

Here.

Tests that use a points system are silly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by clutch-monkey View Post
tells you everything about the article right there
Tells you that the article is wrong, or that BMW is off the mark?
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Old 12-15-2010, 05:26 PM
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any review that contains an audi A4/6/8 etc and doesn't rate it lowest in involvement HAS to be suspect.
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Old 12-15-2010, 05:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clutch-monkey View Post
any review that contains an audi A4/6/8 etc and doesn't rate it lowest in involvement HAS to be suspect.
I could have misremembered.

Also, this is the new 5 and so it could be shittier to drive I suppose.

It's based of the 7 series platform, it is fatter and more luxurious. This seems to be the going trend; maybe the new A6 is even worse than the F10 and/or maybe Audi gave a huge chunk of change to Car and Driver.

I ain't saying that it's necessarily legit, but it does kinda fit into the patter of BMW become number every generation (Who isn't though?).
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Old 12-15-2010, 05:53 PM
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i've driven a new 5 series and it was okay. i would say more involving than previous A6/4 but to be honest given my main point of reference it's all just a series of microwaves.. useful but bland.
much prefer a VE R8 (series I) since the other saloons seem to think fun is somehow beneath them
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Old 12-15-2010, 06:30 PM
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BMW's newer models are less sport oriented because they have had to compromise with predominant buyer tastes, which I believe are more luxury oriented, hence the comment about them taking the "Mercedes way" of sporty luxury cars.

IMO Infiniti was always the japanese equivalent of BMW anyways, so the comment of Infiniti becoming what BMW used to be should not really be considered odd in any way.
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Old 12-15-2010, 07:51 PM
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Don't want to be harsh but considering BMW killed the M3 CLS (at least then the GTS came out), the new 1 Series M is quite heavy and not so small, the CS didn't create a new 8 Series (in any form), the new 6 Series is just...boring, the abundance of "X" models let alone of "X M" models, BMW is moving more towards tacky things on four wheels rather than luxury. Definitely sport isn't a priority it seems.
Mercedes on the other hand I think has never been so much about sporty models (rather versions). Even Audi seems more aggressive than BMW now, and I hate to say that, but they have an S/RS variant of basically each model except SUVs, and they even have a sportscar...! Sort of the same for Mercedes-Benz, and the new E Coupe is just gorgeous. :P
Probably BMW's PR department forgot to send a note to journos saying they were considering buying into Hummer or Jeep.
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Old 12-16-2010, 05:58 AM
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First of all,
Quote:
Originally Posted by clutch-monkey View Post
any review that contains an audi A4/6/8 etc and doesn't rate it lowest in involvement HAS to be suspect.
This.

Now, to the main subject. And the answer in my opinion is no. Mainly because their cars are completely different. Infinitis are far too big, heavy, powerful and complicated to be BMWs. They only have one engine choice and only one of their models can be had with manual gearboxes. Their smallest and lightest car is almost as big as a 5 Series and weights 1780kg. That’s more than 100kg more than an M3. And finally, they start for thousands more than the cheapest BMW. Now I’m not saying that they can’t be good sports saloons, just that they are not BMWs. They are something else.

Furthermore, I disagree that BMW has to be erased completely from an enthusiast’s list. It is true that they’ve done several abortions, but so have many other car makers, and if we are honest the car industry has evolved from the olden days. It is also true that M cars are less focused than they used to be. But even so, if you want a reasonably priced, superb handling sports saloons it still is hard to beat a BMW. And anyone that isn’t convinced should drive one.
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Old 12-16-2010, 06:48 AM
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I'd say they have almost met in the middle....meaning BMW falling and Infiniti rising.
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Old 12-16-2010, 06:49 AM
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same paper, different writer/article....same-ish car

This Infiniti’s split: not a sports car, not luxury | Wheels.ca


All I can tell you is that my parents are looking to buy a M37x, and BMW and Audi hasn't been considered. The prices difference is substantial...
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Old 12-16-2010, 10:03 AM
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Just read the article on Cameron's link.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Article
First off, the new 5 Series is one of the most unimaginative cars I’ve recently driven. After a decade of daringly styled cars, BMW's design department seems to be mailing it in, returning to the “same sausage, different length” approach that got it in such a severe design funk in 1990s. I dare you to spot the difference between a new 5 and 7 Series from 50 metres. Tough, eh? Same goes for the 5's interior—it reeks of BMW Cabin Design 101. And from what I can tell, the next 3-Series will be spat out from the same design mold.
This man clearly doesn't understand BMWs. That pretty much invalidates everything else, in my opinion.
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Old 12-16-2010, 03:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Ferrer View Post

Furthermore, I disagree that BMW has to be erased completely from an enthusiast’s list. It is true that they’ve done several abortions, but so have many other car makers, and if we are honest the car industry has evolved from the olden days. It is also true that M cars are less focused than they used to be. But even so, if you want a reasonably priced, superb handling sports saloons it still is hard to beat a BMW. And anyone that isn’t convinced should drive one.
I agree. I drove the new 760Li recently, I thought the steering, handling, balance, throttle response and shifting in Sport mode were excellent and everything I could want out of a sporty 'Pluto-barge'. That being said, the car still felt HEAVY; Beemer's commitment to fuel economy seems to be entirely focused on it's engines and aerodynamics and not at all on reducing weight. In other words: The weight always moves where you want it to, you just wish there wasn't so much of it. The other problem with the car is technology overload: Now that I've gotten the hang of it I actually like the iDrive on the current 3 Series, but the ones on the previous 5 and 7 Series were maddening and the new 7 seems to be even worse. I know BMW is trying to lead the way in automotive technology, but I think they tend to get ahead of themselves.

I don't know if any of you checked out the RinSpeed BamBoo Concept. The car wasn't too impressive to look at, but the concept behind the car that 'simplicity will be the new luxury' is interesting and something to keep an eye on.
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