View Full Version : BMW corporate brass comes to visit.

02-15-2005, 01:06 PM
Today I drove my TR6 to work since it's 65 and sunny. I parked it in my normal spot with all the other employee cars (up front at a dealership - yes managemant is retarded). I came it and put on my tech uniform, when I came out there was a crowd around the car. I'm used to attention, but I drive it to work often and no one really looks at it. I walked out to make sure it was not on fire, and realized that today all the BMW Southern Region Marketing and Aftersales Managers were visiting. I blended in with the crowd to listen. Comments were "Long time since I've seen one of these - this car is why I'm in the industry", "Why can't we make a pure car anymore, it's so simple", "nice". And my car is a 15 footer - nice on a drive by, rough up close. Eventually our GM said the car was mine and they all broke up, but not before I mentioned BMW owned the name. One of the guys said "It's one of the orphans that needs to come back". Interesting.

02-15-2005, 02:28 PM
Sad thing is that any modern TR (or Healey or any LBC) couldn't possibly be "so simple." Modern buyers weigh luxury items too heavily in their buying decisions. Take a look at what the Miata options list looked like in '91, and now look at what standard equipment and popular packages include. The Miata is still hit hard for being minimalist -- and it's light years ahead of a TR6 or MGB. (MGB being far ahead of a TR6, as well!)

I had to laugh, because I've now read a bunch of stories on the new US-spec Lotus Elise. Every single article says that the car is fun, but one could never live with it on a daily basis. From what I usually hear, the most common statement is "makes a great third vehicle."

That being said, there's really no future for a "so simple" roadster from BMW....not enough $$$$ in it. They'll go down to a 1-series with leatherette or cloth seats, but it'll still have A/C, stability contol and a $1500 sound system.

02-15-2005, 03:49 PM
I agree, they can't even make a Wrangler simple, thay are pumped up to 20 grand as a base model. Would I sell my TR6 for a new version? No. I even considered selling it and ordering an Elise, or building am ERA 289fia kit. It would take too long for one of those to even smell right.

02-16-2005, 12:42 AM
I think we're at a point where the upper management are old enough to remember these cars when they were new. They remember them as capable cars for their time & proven race winners. This will fade soon as this generation ages & they won't be a memory but a discovery for a younger generation.
There will always be that person who connects with the purity of a basic sports car, the rawnness & simplicity of how it works, a car you must feel to drive.
They look like nothing else on the road today. I think the TR6 especially does'nt look out dated but has a classic roadster design. It certainly does'nt have the new aero, wind tunnel tested lines of a Z3 or Boxster but even when it was new the Porsche 914 , Mazda RX7 & others were more modern looking.
This is the alure of the British roadster, no matter what 200 mph beauty it's sitting next to , it will always drawer a crowd.

Paul Johnson
02-16-2005, 12:56 AM
Nice to read this, but no chance of a simple car again. I spent many years in corporate auto world, and know some of the BMW guys, both car and bike. They are all complete enthusiasts, but from a new generation. It's as though they talk the same language, but a different dialect. And, of course, their job is to sell cars, and no amount of teary eyed nostalgia will ever make them lose their career focus. When the 300ZX came in '89, I was a corporate tech trainer. It was billed as a 'back to basics' car, but when I brought one home and parked it next to the Bugeye, well, enough said. But it sold while the British auto industry tripped over their sense of what is proper and right. I worked for a BL port of entry all through the 70s, and saw that over and over, even as the 240Z ate us alive.

02-16-2005, 01:09 AM
Uh OH, I'm one of those guy's that bought a new 73 240Z & sold my 71 TR6. Don't hate me, The Z was my second favorite car
( guess what my first was ) . Here we are over 30 years later & I'm back where I started /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

Paul Johnson
02-16-2005, 01:16 AM
Uh OH, I'm one of those guy's that bought a new 73 240Z & sold my 71 TR6.
So, you're the one who is responsible for my kids going to school in rags! /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif

02-16-2005, 05:43 AM

This topic is being discussed in many places, including HERE. (https://www.grmotorsports.com/board/viewtopic.php?t=7584&start=0)

02-16-2005, 08:48 AM
If it's any consolation, I did have two 6's before the Z .

02-16-2005, 10:46 AM
I owned a 280ZX and a 300ZX, loved them both. My mom had a 73 240Z, and she loved it as well. I'd go so far as to say that I loved my 280ZX nearly as much as I do my TR6, but for different reasons, although I would not trade the TR for a Z now. The TR certainly has more character. I'm not really that educated in the workings of the automotive industry in the late 60's or early 70's but everything I've read about the demise of the classic British marques had more to do with labor union disputes and poor management on the part of Leyland rather than competition from the Japanese. I have a friend who is very into Brit motorcycles, and he hates the Japanese bikes solely for the reason that he thinks the Japanese singled handedly killed off the British motorcycle industry. That seems a bit short sighted IMO. Also, I can't fault the Japanese for wanting to make money. They build high quality cars and bikes that are competitive and fun, and if the British companies (or anyone else for that matter) can't get their act together enough to be cost effective and competitive, then that's their failing, not the Japanese. Blaming the Japanese is simply an excuse. The big three (and alot of Americans as a whole) did it all through the 70's and 80's, until we finally figured out how to build a car with decent reliability and quality control. Although many would argue that the jury is still out on that.

02-16-2005, 11:07 AM
Oh well, we can all sit around and hope. But the fact of the matter is it is unlikely that the TR marque will be resurrected. Even if it was the car they would build would never be able to conjur the same emotions, or experiances. Such a car would never smell, drive, handle, or feel right, as it would just be a modern car trying to pass itself off as classic. The truely sad fact of it all is that no large car company will eve build a car that becomes a classic again. In 20 or 30 years you will not see any of these new mustangs on the road anymore, you won't see the BMW Z3, you won't see the Nissan 300Z. Theses cars may be called classic today but in 20 or 30 years they will only be scrap with a very few of them still running. We should look towards our cars, and a select few car companys, like morgan if we want a classic. Speculation on if BMW would revive TR is better off a fantasy than a reality, because I doubt any of us would like the reality much.