Feel free to apply whatever's written in this driver profile to owners of current-generation Audi A4s and Mercedes-Benz C-Class cars. Because there's really no difference between their buyers and their corresponding lifestyles.
Age Group: That all important 18-35 age group. Over 35s have wised up and decided that the 3-Series is expensive for what it is. (They buy the 1-Series.)
Occupation: Student, middle manager, engineer, budding investment banker. They need to look like they're moving up in the world. Except the student. Students just want to look rich.
Residence: Anywhere the yuppies or kids of wealthy families go to college. So whatever the yuppie neighborhoods of NYC are these days, Silicon Valley, Southern California, and WASP-y New England neighborhoods. Call me out if I'm missing anything else.
Leased or Bought: Leased, if the car is under 3 years old. (Because most people who drive new BMWs actually lease them. Very few can afford them outright.) If over 3 years old, probably attained through some finance deal on Certified Pre-Owned BMWs, with no intention of keeping the car for the long-term.
Intended Use for Car: Want to look like they were successful out of college. Drive it fast on the highway (without using the turn signals) like the salesman showed them to. They really don't care about much else. Race the car down the highway.
Actual Use for Car: This is a result of the payments being made on the car. Point A to Point B travel. Which is a pity because the salesman showed you what BMWs are capable of. The owner will be incredulous when he or she realizes the car doesn't have a USB port for your iPhone because they don't have some option package on the car. If they're under 30, they will race Mustang 5.0s down the highway and will become surprised when they lose. (It's a $50,000 car with turbos, man!)
Attitude Towards Maintenance: Free scheduled maintenance dude! (For 4 years.) Unless it's a CPO, in which they'll find the cheapest mechanic they can and say that service cost on BMWs is overrated. Little do they know about the fragility of the fuel pump on the 335i...
Car They Wish They Had: Anything more expensive than the 3-Series, as long as it shows they were even more successful. Many E90 3-Series owners are not loyal to BMW. Maybe a Range Rover at some point, maybe that big Lexus (don't ask them what model), or maybe an S-Class.
Car They'll Recommend to Others: Camry or Accord (take your pick), because they can't remember the names of any other cars. (They only got the 3-Series because apparently BMWs show that you're going up in life.) They also may want to ensure that they'll be the only one in the group with a BMW.
Car They'll Want at the Rental Counter: Ford Mustang Convertible, because they saw it on the poster. Unless they have kids, in which case it will be anything with four doors.
Driver Profiles is a recurring feature on Clunkerture. Anyone is free to create their own Driver Profiles from this form, since I'm not qualified to write profiles on some car owners, like the people who run Pontiac Fieros and Alfa Romeo Breras. Feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com if you'd like your piece to be featured.
This post originally appeared on my Kinja blog BecauseCAR.
Image credit BMW.