Originally Posted by tdizzle
I think he meant between the same series. Some people will buy the cheapest version of something because it has the name.
BMW already tried this angle in the United States and failed miserably.
When introduced in the United States and Canada, despite being reasonably priced, starting at $19,900 (USD), the 318ti never enjoyed popularity in North America. While consumers desired a less expensive BMW, North American consumers, America in particular, dislike the hatchback bodystyle. Also the popularity of sport utility vehicles at the time overshadowed the compact BMW.
BMW ceased importation of the BMW Compact to North America after the 1999 model year after a very short 4 year run due to a combination of poor sales, and BMW's desire to reposition themselves more upmarket by phasing out all 4-cylinder vehicles with the introduction of the new BMW E46 3-series. The failure of the E36 Compact precluded the E46 Compact's entry into the North American market.
The failure of the E36 BMW Compact in North America also prompted BMW to reconfigure the BMW Compact's ultimate successor, the BMW 1 Series, from a hatchback to a coupe before attempting to market the car in North America again.
More recently, the 1 series and X1 have been sales flops.
Americans aren't that stupid. The know that there's really no such thing as a "People's" BMW. That's what Civics and Focus' are for.
The X1 is the newest flop because BMW drivers immediately check off 10,000 of options and then either:
1. Get an x3
2. Shop another brand.
The only way cheap BMW's will work here is if they remove the options. Lots of people start out looking for a "cheap BMW" and wind up in a loaded up Hyundai. It's the bells and whistle and shiny lights crowd.