• Has BMW slipped? Is Mercedes now the German performance enthusiast brand of choice?


      Many of us were attracted to German performance by BMW. There was a time when they made cars unlike anyone else. Cars that took no short cuts, with motors that represented the best their engineers had to offer. Now what do we have? Anti-tuning ecu's, the same motor in every car, M SUV's, FWD city cars coming, smaller and smaller motors paired with extreme brand dilution.

      While this has all been taking place, Mercedes has upped the ante. Mercedes is producing larger V8's with turbos. Mercedes is not afraid to place these motors in their lower end cars even if it steps on big brothers toes (C63 vs. E63, anyone?). Mercedes has rolled out the SLR, SLS, CLK63 Black Series, and SL65 Black Series. Rumor has it that Mercedes will put their twin turbo V8 in a black series C-coupe. If that isn't upping the ante, I do not know what is.

      BMW has announced the next generation M3 will have a 6 cylinder. While they are downsizing Mercedes is sticking a V8 in everything. They are even planning on expanding the AMG lineup and also considering producing an entry level SLS to rival the Porsche 911. Somehow, Mercedes went from being soft to being hardcore offering the black series which takes already potent AMG cars to the next level. Not to mention, unlike BMW and Audi, Mercedes has successfully rolled out all their performance models in the United States. Times are changing folks, and at least to this poster, it sure looks like Mercedes is now the enthusiast brand of choice.
      This article was originally published in forum thread: Has BMW slipped? Is Mercedes now the German performance enthusiast brand of choice? started by Sticky View original post
      Comments 140 Comments
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Stahlgrau Click here to enlarge
        I'm not sure, but isn't E92 M3 faster around the 'Ring than one of these Black Series?
        Mercedes claims a 7:52 which for the CLK63 but it has lapped as fast as 7:45 back in 2007 which is ahead of anything BMW has produced: http://petrolsmell.com/2010/04/20/nu...est-lap-times/
      1. Stahlgrau's Avatar
        Stahlgrau -
        Well then, I was mistaken. Sounds like BMW better get their $#@! together, although the Black Series isn't really comparable to anything BMW makes. It'll be interesting to see what they do with these TT sixes for the next M3.

        They need to bring back the CSL.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Stahlgrau Click here to enlarge
        Sounds like BMW better get their $#@! together, although the Black Series isn't really comparable to anything BMW makes
        Exactly, that is the problem. Mercedes makes more hardcore drivers cars than BMW, how the hell did that happen?

        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Stahlgrau Click here to enlarge
        They need to bring back the CSL.
        They cancelled it for the M SUV's but I agree, would be nice. Although the GTS basically is that but I feel BMW only made it to try to shut the enthusiasts up. Considering we can't get it, it might as well not exist.
      1. Blackbenzz's Avatar
        Blackbenzz -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 654 Click here to enlarge
        That is because Mercedes is not able to produce a real sports car with low weight even despite having the cars so expensive that some weight reduction should be possible for that money.
        Not able and CHOOSING not to are 2 very different things. If any joe shmo can throw carbon fiber parts made in Taiwan on a car to lose weight, you really think that MB is "not able" to do this?

        And I actually hate the new MB styling besides the C63 which should have came from the factory with wider rear quarter panels to match the front fenders. What the 63 motors ae doing with just bolt ons is nothing short of amazing!
      1. Stahlgrau's Avatar
        Stahlgrau -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Blackbenzz Click here to enlarge
        Not able and CHOOSING not to are 2 very different things. If any joe shmo can throw carbon fiber parts made in Taiwan on a car to lose weight, you really think that MB is "not able" to do this?

        And I actually hate the new MB styling besides the C63 which should have came from the factory with wider rear quarter panels to match the front fenders. What the 63 motors ae doing with just bolt ons is nothing short of amazing!

        That goes both ways, really. Anyone can design big displacement motors with big power. BMW chooses to make their power differently and for different purposes.

        I'm not saying there's anything wrong with big power, big displacement motors. Just saying the cars aren't quite aimed at the same customers, in my opinion.
      1. Ricer Ennemi's Avatar
        Ricer Ennemi -
        BMW wons the technologic war against MB.

        But in the end that do not gain nothing to BMW
        since MB have the aquired right of selling more
        expensive cars with way bigger engines...with
        forced induction...
      1. fast4door's Avatar
        fast4door -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Doug007 Click here to enlarge
        Performance is a lot more than throwing the biggest engine you can find in your smallest car (not saying it isn't fun. It's a classic combo from shelby cobras to GTOs).

        BMW is still the top dog when it comes to a balanced car. M3s still win comparison tests against the C63. To quote from a comparison test "Next to the C63 and RS 4, this latest M3 offers the purest, least diluted, most involving, and best-in-class driver-and-machine relationship. Those characteristics are what made the M3 great, and they're still evident in a faster and more refined package."

        That is why BMW is great plain and simple.

        I think Mercedes has stepped up more than BMW has slipped. For years, enthusiasts would just laugh at a the thought of buying a benz. They were soft luxo couches for the autobahn. Not any more.

        BMW still sets the standard for sport sedans. They have some work to do in the hp race but nothing twin turbo v8s can't solve Click here to enlarge
        This
      1. lughed's Avatar
        lughed -
        What it is, is that BMW is chasing Mercedes in the luxury departement so their building the cars softer they way Mercedes have been successful. For Mercedes, its the opposite. Their chasing BMW in the performance departement, so their building the cars to be faster and harder.

        The real problem imo is Mercedes has a hardcore following. BMW does to but to say you own a Mercedes, for Mercedes is enough to draw a larger cumsumer base. BMW is now building cars to please everyone in every category in order to draw a larger consumer base. In the process BMW has gone away from what made them the best imo.

        IMO Mercedes is building cars with big engines and such but they still are not on par with all around performance. Mercedes = German muscle car when it comes to performance.
      1. lughed's Avatar
        lughed -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DBFIU Click here to enlarge
        I think up until the E92 M3 BMW has been top dog, no one can refute that. But everything afterwards is going to be complete garbage.

        Mercedes has changed the game.
        Actually the new turbo Merc v8 puts out mor than the bmW turbo v8. But thats the way its always been. BMW does something then years later evryone comes with something to beat it.
      1. lughed's Avatar
        lughed -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by mazdaspeed6 Click here to enlarge
        Bi turbo s54 wouldn't be so bad in the next m3... Make it revv out to 9k and they should have mb beat
        3.8l s54 turbo is the only way to go!
      1. lughed's Avatar
        lughed -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        Well, the GTS really isn't all that impressive. Plus, it isn't cheap, and either way, it would be outgunned vs. the C as well.
        HUH? ISnt the gTS Ring time a second or so off the Porsche GT3 time?
      1. Stahlgrau's Avatar
        Stahlgrau -
        Like I said, when comparably priced MB's are beating their BMW counterpart around tracks, not just horsepower, let me know.
      1. Sorena's Avatar
        Sorena -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Stahlgrau Click here to enlarge
        Like I said, when comparably priced MB's are beating their BMW counterpart around tracks, not just horsepower, let me know.
        which MB beats BMW in a track?
      1. Stahlgrau's Avatar
        Stahlgrau -
        That's my point. They don't. I suppose it depends on the track, but from everything I've read and seen, the BMWs are better on a road course.

        On a drag strip or street race, it's probably different.

        Guess it depends what kind of enthusiast you are.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by lughed Click here to enlarge
        What it is, is that BMW is chasing Mercedes in the luxury departement so their building the cars softer they way Mercedes have been successful. For Mercedes, its the opposite. Their chasing BMW in the performance departement, so their building the cars to be faster and harder.
        But BMW has moved downscale, so are they chasing Mercedes in the luxury department or Toyota in the volume department?

        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by lughed Click here to enlarge
        IMO Mercedes is building cars with big engines and such but they still are not on par with all around performance. Mercedes = German muscle car when it comes to performance.
        This is what is changing, the Black Series was a major step and some could say Mercedes is starting to build better all around cars. When they start offering DCT's in their AMG's it will be interesting.
      1. Stahlgrau's Avatar
        Stahlgrau -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        But BMW has moved downscale, so are they chasing Mercedes in the luxury department or Toyota in the volume department?



        This is what is changing, the Black Series was a major step and some could say Mercedes is starting to build better all around cars. When they start offering DCT's in their AMG's it will be interesting.

        The Black Series, CSL, GTS, etc. are all very small production numbers. They're a very tiny part of a bigger picture. I doubt they're huge money makers for the manufacturers, but just something exciting to put out there for a few select buyers.

        Being that they're only produced in such small numbers and not much profit is made, it seems BMW has chosen to focus their efforts elsewhere. Selling more cars to different audiences.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Stahlgrau Click here to enlarge
        The Black Series, CSL, GTS, etc. are all very small production numbers. They're a very tiny part of a bigger picture. I doubt they're huge money makers for the manufacturers, but just something exciting to put out there for a few select buyers.
        They are image builders and reflect the companies ideals. They are models which are a matter of pride and designed to compete against the best of the best.

        Mercedes at least respects their enthusiasts enough to roll them out worldwide. Also, Mercedes offers real supercars, BMW doesn't. That is a major issue in of itself.

        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Stahlgrau Click here to enlarge
        Being that they're only produced in such small numbers and not much profit is made, it seems BMW has chosen to focus their efforts elsewhere. Selling more cars to different audiences.
        Translation: Sell outs
      1. Stahlgrau's Avatar
        Stahlgrau -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        They are image builders and reflect the companies ideals. They are models which are a matter of pride and designed to compete against the best of the best.

        Mercedes at least respects their enthusiasts enough to roll them out worldwide. Also, Mercedes offers real supercars, BMW doesn't. That is a major issue in of itself.



        Translation: Sell outs
        They're in the business of selling cars. So, yeah, I suppose they're sell outs.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Stahlgrau Click here to enlarge
        They're in the business of selling cars. So, yeah, I suppose they're sell outs and profits are up.
        Absolutely, and all they lose is respect, honor, and integrity.
      1. Stahlgrau's Avatar
        Stahlgrau -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        Absolutely, and all they lose is respect, honor, and integrity.
        From you. One of millions.