BenzWorld Junior Member
Date registered: Jan 2012
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A Comment from a BMW owner.
“can anyone comment on what they see as the basic personality/characteristics/ buyer profile of the Mercedes line as opposed to those of BMW?”
I signed up at Benzworld a while ago to help a buddy with a repair to his E320, a water pump replacement. I personally own a 3 series, the last great 3 series BTW, the E46.
So anyway, this illuminates a basic personality/characteristic difference that I think WAS historically more robust. I’ve found that a good number of BMW owners do some basic maintenance on their cars, with others full out wrenching on their cars. Cleaning MAF sensors, installing brakes/rotors, new suspensions, window regulators, pre cat O2 sensors, fluid changes etc…
Now, you guys here on the Benzworld site are different because you tend to work on your cars, I’m a member of Bimmerfest myself. But moving beyond wrenching, I’d suspect a larger percentage of BMW owners (especially 3 series owners) know things about their cars such as the amount of negative camber they’re running, or their toe-in measurement, or the type of oil they run, or which type of shocks and springs they have, whereas you just wouldn’t even ask a a typical MB owner - because they wouldn't even understand the question. And that gets to the point many of you have made already, BMW historically has made performance sedans, and that has historically attracted a performance-oriented ownership. The 3 series, as a platform for modification, was excellent, and the availability of high quality aftermarket non-OEM parts is vast.
That’s the way it was through the E46 produced between 1999 and 2006, since then, in an effort to boost sales BMW has basically abandoned the performance focus in lieu of high margin luxury accouterments. BMW management has not been shy about stating they they’re actively targeting sales to females. And, newer models (post E46) are increasingly getting more difficult to wrench on, thus forcing owners into overpriced dealerships for repairs. You now see a huge drop in resale value once a new BMW comes off warranty because you just can’t work on you car like you used to. Hell you can’t change your own battery anymore without visiting a dealer to introduce the battery to the car’s electrical system.
So BMW is rapidly starting to look like MB, and as a result the differentiation between BMW and MB owners is dissipating. If MB offered their cars in the N. American market with a stick, I’d absolutely look them as an option when its time to buy again. I’ll tell you this, I won’t be buying another BMW.
Thanks for your help with the water pump before guys, I’ll probably pop my head back in here the next time by buddy’s E320 has an issue.