Whenever a reader here expresses some discontent at the nature of the content here, well, let’s just say I’ve got too much invested in the site to just shrug it off. So when I saw this in comments this morning, my attention was aroused.
…..the one thing I despise about this website are the frequent and trite anti-BMW remarks. I keep coming back here for the breaking news and interest stories, but I really don’t think I belong to this community.
I addressed it briefly in a comment reply, but I think it bears mentioning here as well.
I’ll be honest – I don’t like BMWs. I don’t like their styling. I don’t like their interiors and in the few drives I’ve had in them I don’t like their power delivery either. But I do respect the fact that they’re very well engineered and overall, very well made motor vehicles. The sales figures don’t lie and if you sit in a new one, the quality of finish doesn’t lie, either.
But they’re not for me.
I’ve found that Saab enthusiasts have particular tastes in various things as well as in cars, and I’m no exception. I tend to think of BMW as the Toyota of the premium vehicle segment so that puts them behind the 8-ball for starters, but on top of that is the fact that they just don’t appeal to me (with the possible exception of some of the old 6s, which had a fair bit of character).
What galls me to the crust of my undies is the way many automotive journalists trip over their own tongues trying to get to drive them in order to spew out unending praise as if they were the automotive equivalent to a cure for cancer. The word Teutonic is a case in point. Is the word “German” not adequately descriptive? It appears not. So we have the automotive press ascribing a word just for BMWs because it sounds more mysterious. A Volkswagen Polo is every bit as Teutonic as a BMW M3, isn’t it?
Having said all that, and I’ll repeat this again – I do respect them. You have to.
Generally speaking, the stuff that I write,say or show here that might be denigrating to BMW or any other brand is tongue-in-cheek. There’s an element of truth in it but it’s meant in a good natured and good humoured way. I think most people can see that, but perhaps the relative frequency is off-putting to some.
Second, there’s also a hint of envy in the fact that they get to build cars according to their own philosophy. I’m quite sure that if Saab had their own way, some of the cars that you can buy now would be a little different. That’s the price Saab have to pay to survive.
Because the BMW philosophy appeals to a broader range of people they’ve been successful and can continue to do what they do. I don’t think it’s an innaccuracy to say that Saab were more distinctive back in the growth days of the 80s, but their formula still had limited appeal, and we all know what’s happened since.
Third, I’m an Aussie. I don’t want to generalise too much here, or take a cop out on the basis of a perceived cultural trait, but Aussies don’t generally celebrate success like other people do. Perhaps it’s rooted in our convict heritage?
Allow me a “compare and contrast” from my own limited understanding.
If an American has success at something then that’s encouraged. If they go on to greater success than that’s applauded and if they go on to even greater success then it’s generally cheered and shouted about from the proverbial rooftops.
In Australia, when someone has success then it’s encouraged. If they go on to greater success then it’s generally applauded. If they go on to even greater success then it’s quite obvious they think they’re better than the rest of us and they need to be brought down to size a little. Here in Oz we call it the Tall Poppy Syndrome.
It’s evidence of the fact that we all like to think of each other as almost-equals and whilst it’s fine to go strutting your stuff on the world stage you’d better still be capable of turning a sausage on the BBQ or kicking a football – because that’s the fabric of real life. You can be good at what you do and you can certainly earn some respect, but don’t go thinking you’re better than everyone else.
Finally, this site gives news and opinion. I’m not a professional journalist and there’s not that much news from a little company like Saab anyway. So sometimes I write about other things of interest to me in the hope that they’ll be of interest to others, too. That’s the opinion side of things and it’s not objective. It is tongue-in-cheek most of the time and I can certainly respect other brands, but it is also my opinion – with all of the subjectivity that that implies.
At the end of the day, this site costs readers nothing except their internet access fee. I’m appreciative of the fact that you choose to spend some of your bandwidth here and I hope you continue to do so, but it’s hard to cater to everyone’s sensitivities.
Please don’t take offence as there’s none intended. Just click on to the next page and quietly think of me as an occasional idiot.