Revisiting BMW’s Textbook Example of Terrible Marketing

In the wake of EVs, most manufacturers are quick to hop on the trend, while others are pressured by regulations. There isn’t a necessity to create appeal for alternative energy, but some brands took the extra step to ensure their potential customers that they are ditching their ways and moving on to a greener future through the electrification of their lineup.

It is a good time to remind ourselves that disrespecting one’s own history, current customers, their fanbase, and possessing a carefree attitude to criticism in an attempt to appear hipper and more intelligent to a new market is a terrible approach; one that BMW took with the launch of its iX and i4 models. Amidst all of the criticism, BMW released a promotional video for CES 2021 (short for Consumer Electronics Show) titled ‘A story of generations.’

A short summary of it is that the iX kicks out the older 7 series after an argument on which deserves being showcased and takes its spot in the building. The video gained massive disapproval from most, if not all of the watchers, evident by the comments section and the dislike count (which has since been disabled by YouTube). Portraying the E66 760Li as a stereotypical boomer is one thing, but the argument between both cars are nonsensical and lopsided, with much of the favor being given to the iX. While it is more technologically advanced, there isn’t a lot to take home with it, when the 7 series is objectively better everywhere else; being a top-of-the-line car of its time. It doesn’t convince anyone that a model as grand as a V12 saloon would have the voice of a stereotypical grumpy elderly male.

Not only is it gullible and thoughtless, criticizing what is essentially a controversial, yet critically acclaimed era of BMW is all but pointless. Granted, the aforementioned era was divided thanks to Chris Bangle’s visions, but there is no clear message given from the video, other than the impression that BMW has self-loathing issues that are solved by coping with newer products. Moving forward? Not quite. To quote Felix Kjellberg, “it’s evolving, just backwards.”

A better showcase of the iX would be the older BMWs silently welcoming the next generation. Presenting the doubt that their enthusiasts would have for the infamously unattractive iX and its electric nature, but a common understanding formed by the fact that change is inevitable, and uncertainty may turn for the better, as proven by Chris Bangle years after his contribution.

If every car in the building was sentient, rest assured the iX would be nowhere near the building; by force, intimidation, or simply sound reasoning that it is outclassed by every other model before it. That being said, I’ll gladly take a Bangle-era 7 series over an iX anytime.

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