There's nothing pay to win about it. Everything real currency can buy can also be bought with in-game currency... except militia blueprints... which consist of an infinite supply of the same crappy gear you start with.
I guess it all depends on which voice you're trying to hear.
There are three types of Aurum gear, two of which can be considered Pay-to-win
The first of which is blueprints / reusable gear, these are generally low quality and thus not really Pay-to-win. -
The second is gear which is one level higher than others available at that skill point level. This is Pay-to-win to a small degree, as someone could spend their skill points in other areas while still reaping the benefit of good gear without the skill point investment.
However, this is more "Pay to avoid the grind" than it is Pay-to-win. Most advantages granted by this set of gear could be bridged within a week or two at any given point. -
The third is one that i feel is a bit silly, and the worst offender of Pay-to-win in this particular game.
Gear pieces that are equivalent in power to their ISK counterparts, but cost less CPU/PG to equip. This allows for normally impossible dropsuit setups that cannot be achieved by someone getting gear purely through ISK.
While lower Cpu/PG cost items are a bit unfair to start with, they make some sense I think. Most items have at least once skill that lowers the CPU or PG cost of the item as you level it up. Aur items would either not get this, or get less of it because the person isn't spending the skill points into the item like everyone else is.
Now if the Aur items both have less PG/CPU to begin with AND get the benefits of the reduction skills that would be cheap..
"That is not just scraping the bottom of the barrel, that is lifting the barrel up and poking some of the slimy sludge growing underneath the barrel."