Thank You, Chris Bangle! Thank you for...

... nothing! I've always hated Chris Bangle. I've hated him to death without even knowing why. Maybe because everybody did? Because it was the trend? Every Bayerische Motoren Werke fan on the Internet was saying that he's just destroying the BMW image. So I jumped on the bandwagon and started my own one-way flame war with the guy. Even more, I despised him because he “dared to tarnish the image” of the “cool” company BMW used to be. Not that I'm BMW fan or anything; that's a different discussion altogether.

When I drove the first X3 “SAV” a few years ago, I hated Bangle again. It was the boring interior, the lack of any creature comforts and the fact that every mildly interesting BMW feature was to be found only on its big brother, the X5. “Marketing reasons” - I was told... I didn't even know if that crapmobile was Bangle's fault but I again hated him with all my guts. There's a lot to say about the BMW X3 and the “revolutionary” materials I was to find in its interior, but we should keep this conversation on cars only. How about the new X6?

The moment I first test drove the X6 I had the biggest shock possible. Maybe it's something completely subjective (and it is), but I haven't seen many cars which are uglier than a BMW X6. I don't even know if “ugly” is the correct term. Abominable maybe? Scary? Hideous? You pick the best adjective. I began hoping that it's just a failed experiment (Bangle got his cursing ratio obviously) and that BMW will come back to its senses with the new 7-Series. It didn't happen.

I don't like the new 7-Series either. It doesn't bring anything completely new, it still doesn't have a ride-height adjustable suspension, no all-wheel drive and it still looks like a beached whale... Although it's more expensive and rarer than ever. Maybe the economic crisis will bring it the ever-dreaming aura of an exclusive sedan.

Meanwhile, Bangle left BMW. I don't know exactly why (meaning we might never know the actual truth). But anyway, why does it still matter? The fans opened bottles of champagne (I even bought a Dom Perignon) and we together cheered and hoped for a better BMW, a more beautiful one, more artistic, more... latin? OK, maybe not latin, but at least more beautiful. Maybe even safer, I told myself thinking about the way the 5-Series handled itself at the recent crash tests.

Anyway, a few days ago the first information about the new 5-Series GT surfaced the web. A GT from BMW? Wow! This is definitely something worth seeing, I said. But wait, the disappointment... just a horrific flatter X6. This is a BMW GT? You mean the X6 idea caught on? Will they make an X6 sedan too? Or maybe an even smaller X6, and so on?

The remaining question is this, to whom do I direct my “complaints” now? Bangle quit (and it's easy to see why after observing the new 5-Series GT) and I no longer have a hero, be it a negative one. Could Bangle get the same “credit” for Satan's offspring aka the 5-Series GT too?

Could the 5-Series GT actually be Bangle's testament? If it is, he can rest assured. The cursing has most likely arrived from everywhere by now. The same killer look, killing rear design, road-hugging snout, the lack of visibility coming from a miserable design and with no “GT” connections either!

So, thank very much Chris Bangle! Thank you for leaving! From myself and the bunch of BMW fans who are cursing you on the Internet. And I'm not even a BMW fan...
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