Up until now Anhueser Busch has tried to claim how superior Budweiser is to heavier beers that "hide their imperfections." But now they have thrown a big curve ball with the Budweiser American Ale. You should start seeing it in liquor stores as it has a September 2008 release date. So how are they going to market this, because that is always their primary concern.
I believe that have already made a marketing mistake by putting Budweiser on the bottle. The only large brewery to get their craft line right has been Coors with the Blue Moon products. Most people don't realize this, but Coors owns the Blue Moon Company. Yes it is good beer, but they do not want to associate Coors with the beer so that people will feel their are involved with the trendy craft beer scene if they are drinking the Belgian Wit (meaning Wheat in Flemish).
I believe this American Ale that Anheuser Busch is coming out with is in direct competition with the American Amber Fat Tire produced by New Belgium Brewing Company, the third largest craft brewer behind Boston Brewing (Sam Adams) and Sierra Nevada. So do they use their old tactics and claim how much better it is than Fat Tire, or lay low and let word of mouth do the job?
This could actually be a good beer, it has already received pretty good ratings by some of the first samplers on ratebeer.com. If they use a similar strategy as Coors used with Blue Moon, it has real potential to take off. However, if they push it on consumer it will get a bad reputation in the craft beer world and will most likely fizzle out.