Do you have a jones for the BMW 1 Series M we last showed you here? If so, Left Lane News tells us the price will start at $45,000, so now you know exactly how many internal organs and how much blood plasma you need to sell to afford one. You also have a pretty good idea of how long you’ll be eating Top Ramen, enhanced with squirrel meat (gamey, but nutritious). Like everything else, however, that price comes with a giant caveat: first, it’s the base price before you start adding options. When was the last time you saw a BMW on a dealer lot without $5,000 to $10,000 (or more) worth of tacked-on, factory-installed goodies (bratwurst scented air freshener, with BMW Roundel: $500). Next, and this is a big one, BMW will only import 1,000 1 Series M coupes to the United States. The law of supply and demand would dictate that each dealer throw a considerable amount of “ADM”, or Additional Dealer Markup, onto the price of each car sold.
Let’s estimate on the conservative side, and say that you find one with a scant $3,000 worth of options, and dealer price gouging of only another $3,000. That makes your pre-tax purchase price $51,000, and that kind of coin buys a lot of other track day toys, both new and used. A Porsche Boxster without too many options sells for the same price new, as does a base model Corvette (although given Corvette inventories these days you can do much, much better). The new Mustang GT, optioned out with every thing you can add, would still sell for less money, and you can almost buy a Shelby GT for that kind of coin. On the used market, the sky’s the limit, and you should be able to find clean Z06 Corvettes, decent Vipers and even clean M3s for $51k.
BMW will have no trouble selling every 1 Series M they import, but they’re kidding themselves if they think it will attract a younger, less affluent buyer. How about a 1 Series M with a cloth interior, manual transmission, manual climate control, radio delete and no other amenities? What if you built enough to meet demand, and sold it for $35,000? Then you’d quite possibly have a feeder car to introduce younger, working class buyers to the brand. I just don’t see that on the horizon.