The experience of being on BMW’s Olympiapark, Munich premises; is in many ways a religious one. Having lived through and survived both World wars, the Premises are a testament to an archive of BMW heritage and German history, all comprised within beautifully molded pieces of Metalwork and horsepower.
On the the Facility…
Not to get into the History of BMW; as that’s going to need a whole another article altogether. However, in speaking on the BMW World facility; In 2001 BMW held its own version of a modern day Gladiator tournament. Only this time featuring twenty-seven architectural firms. These firms competed against one another for the better part of two years, until the year 2003 – When Vienna based CO-OP Himmelblau were finally contracted for the building of the facility. Cost for the same? 200 Million dollars.
Fast forward to 2017; the facility has offered BMW customers and enthusiasts alike a Mecca of their own. Overseeing the Olympia Park and very much in the heart of the beautiful city of Munich; the BMW facility has offered it’s wide spread of Bayerisch Automotive goodness to over ten Million guests since it’s opening - as of the year 2012. Further count pending as of yet.
The facility is properly HUGE. And rightly so, considering how it pretty much offers on display everything that BMW has asides from it’s manufacturing. However, from the perspective of casual audience, as well as in an attempt to try and simplify things: the facility could be stated to primarily comprise of the BMW Welt and the BMW Museum. Basically BMW History can be accessed in the Museum and it’s modern day beauties in BMW Welt (German for World)
About BMW World…
A highlight of my BMW World experience was just how much we were able to interact with the cars in there. Despite of it being Day 4 in a four-day long weekend – Which in turn bought in what I’d suggest was more than the usual audience into the Facility – Everything was extremely accessible. Much credit to the architecture of the facility – We were able to pretty much comfortably glide through every piece in the facility and get even a good dose of hush-hush time with them.
They seemed to have everything from the X-series to the infamous M’s. Further paying testimon to just how good a Simulator the Forza games are – The facility also offered gaming consoles with an all BMW series of the Forza Motorsport 6. The preset difficulty was, all but too easy.. or perhaps I’m just that damn good.. I never really checked it; so we’ll probably never know.
After the 2001 "Re-labeling"of John Cooper Work’s Mini and Rolls Royce; BMW has unarguably proves itself as a blessing to the Mini badge. Thus making car's like the Mini Clubman and Countryman immediately accessible.
The BMW motorcycles brand has never really been the new kid on the block. The quite Kid? Perhaps. For me personally the badge started to become an unforgettable name after I first spotted a pair of their BMW R1200 Gs' in the series Long Way Round. Which if you haven’t yet watched; know that it comes highly recommended.
It’s a story of bike-buddies Charlie Boorman and Evan McGregor’s exploits over a 30,395 km stretch of road circumnavigating the planet earth. If that does not test the limits of two wheeler motoring – I don’t know what will?
Spoiler: the motorcycles come through!
Last, but not the least
In my time here in Germany, I have been fortunate enough to cover quite a few genres in Automotive. And while visiting a Museum by no means comes any close to the excitement of being on an open dirt track; it’s something you’d be a fool to count out. Let me put it quite simply like this. Every Architect, at least the few that I know would gladly trek the Piramids of Giza and Walk the Great Walls of China. It’s adventurous and adrenalin fuelled. Its rugged and dangerous. And above all euphonic. But then again, could you compare that to standing head up in the centre of the Sinistine Chappel? I don’t think so, either.
Written By & Photographed By: Neville Pinto
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