BMW explains why the big grille on the M3 and M4 is not for everyone

LISTEN 03:51

The latest BMW M3 and M4 are the most dynamic and powerful of their kind, but they also stand out due to their polarizing exterior designs. The huge kidney grille is the main culprit. While some BMW enthusiasts find it daring, others think that the German company ruined them. Some would rather have Chris Bangle back on the design team!

BMW is well aware that many do not like the new grille, but it doesn’t have a problem with all the criticism it’s getting on social media. Design boss Domagoi Dukec explains that the oversized kidney grille was created for customers that want to stand out. In short, if you don’t like, you weren’t among BMW’s targeted customers anyway.

If You Don't Like BMW's Bucktooth Grille, That's Okay - You Weren't Going to Buy One Anyway Exterior Wallpaper quality
- image 935363

Speaking to Top Gear, Dukec revealed that BMW is well aware of the polarizing effect the new M3 and M4 kidney grille had on sports coupe enthusiasts. "I’m reading social media and press, and I can see that some people are wondering where BMW is heading, but I can assure you that we have a clear vision about where we’re going. We all love the brand," he said.

And as it turns out, no one as BMW is surprised by the amount of criticism the company received when it introduced the redesigned compacts. "I’ve been in this business for over 20 years. You know how it is in design - everybody has an opinion. That’s normal. If you want to create something that stands out, it must be distinguished and it has to be different," Dukec added.

Needless to say, the 4 Series, the M4, and the M3 are definitely different, especially when compared to their predecessors.

If you don’t like it, then it wasn’t designed for you

If You Don't Like BMW's Bucktooth Grille, That's Okay - You Weren't Going to Buy One Anyway Exterior
- image 935396

Dukec goes on to explain that the big kidney grille isn’t just a shot in the dark. While it may seem that everybody hates it, it actually has a solid fanbase.

"You can create something beautiful, and we also have cars which are just pretty. But there are some customers that, if you want to reach them, you have to stand out. You have to create something that is not in-line; maybe not like an everyday car or an everyday product, but that’s exactly the reason," he said.

"It is not our goal to please everyone in the world. You can’t make a design which pleases everyone," Dukec added, pointing out that Bangle-era BMWs like the E60-generation 5 Series were hated at first, but are now being looked at with fondness.

If You Don't Like BMW's Bucktooth Grille, That's Okay - You Weren't Going to Buy One Anyway Exterior
- image 935526

“Not all our products get the same critics. You can see that on something as polarizing like the kidneys on the 4 Series, 20 percent of people are liking it. That fits to the type of customers we are targeting. Not all customers are going for the 4 Series," Dukec continued. In short, if you’re unhappy with the grille, you’re unlikely to be a possible buyer of the 4 Series, M4, and M3. At least according to BMW.

Are big grilles becoming a thing at BMW?

If You Don't Like BMW's Bucktooth Grille, That's Okay - You Weren't Going to Buy One Anyway Exterior
- image 935517

The big kidney grille that extends all the way to the bottom of the bumper is something you’ll have to live with if you want an M3 or M4. The regular 4 Series is also fitted with the same grille, but the 3 Series isn’t. The latter still features an opening similar to its predecessor.

The 7 Series sedan also boasts a massive grille, albeit sporting a different shape. It’s not as tall, but each element is really wide. The same goes for the X7, seemingly inspired by the full-size sedan. The SUV’s grille isn’t as wide, but it’s significantly taller. However, the remaining vehicles in the lineup don’t stand out with larger-than-usual grilles. BMW once said that not all nameplates will get it, so I guess we will still see more traditional grille designs on the road in the future.

Source: Top Gear

Ciprian Florea
Ciprian Florea
Senior Editor and Supercar Expert - ciprian@topspeed.com
Ciprian's passion for everything with four wheels (and more) started back when he was just a little boy, and the Lamborghini Countach was still the coolest car poster you could hang on your wall. Ciprian's career as a journalist began long before earning a Bachelor's degree, but it was only after graduating that his love for cars became a profession.  Read full bio
About the author

Related Articles

2021 BMW M3

2021 BMW M4 Competition

What do you think?
Show Comments
Car Finder: