27 July 2020
Anybody who values the BMW brand and is just a little bit interested in design will love this lavishly choreographed and captivatingly told story on BMW.com: the history of the BMW kidneys, the inimitable shape of the radiator grille. The iconic kidneys originated in the BMW 303 from the year 1933, and they also feature in the latest electrically powered models. Naturally enough, the cooling air vents don’t actually have any technical function in an all-electric car, but the BMW kidney-shaped grille has attained iconic status as a distinctive trademark and therefore still occupies a fixed place in a new interpretation. The form of the BMW kidneys has been styled in many variations over time. The journey along the 13 milestones of the BMW kidney narrates the design story and also elucidates our relationship with engineering, power and mobility. Informative and gripping!
It was undoubtedly not an easy task to gather these living legends from the motor-sport history of BMW together in one place. Mint Classics located in Hohenbrunn near Munich specialises in classic BMWs and the enthusiasts there mastered the challenge: Jochen Neerpasch, former racing driver and founder of BMW Motorsport GmbH, Hans-Joachim “Strietzel” Stuck, former Formula 1 driver and BMW works driver, and Johnny Cecotto, also a one-time Formula 1 driver and BMW Touring Car Champion, with victories including 1992 winner of the 24 Hours Race at the Nürburgring. They all came together to create this special feature. Each of the three icons got behind the wheel of a BMW classic car from the 1970s and 1980s to star in a videoclip just shy of three minutes in length. Back to the era of silent movies with no words spoken but that palpable feeling of authentic motor sport from an era more than 40 years ago. And in the film credits at the end there’s the very promising teaser: “to be continued” . . .
The restoration of classic cars tends to be documented in glamorous clips. At most, you might get to see a piece of welding equipment in the background. But there’s a step change with the “Journeymen” in South Africa. When these spannermen get together in their awesome workshop located in Cape Town to restore a Mini Cooper S MK 1, it’s all about doing the business, and that’s when the sparks fly. The video documentary on their YouTube channel is a big reveal of passion, skill and joy. On Monday 27 July 2020 at 18.00, Benjamin Voß – BMW Group Classic spokesman – will talk to the journeymen in a live stream on the Instagram channel of MINI. Tune in to find out about the progress they are making on the restoration.
In the BMW Youngtimer Club Italia for modern classics, enthusiasts rhapsodise about unusual models which are well on the way to attaining the status of classic cars. Apart from the sense of community and swapping know-how and ideas, the main pursuit of happiness for the members is sheer driving pleasure. Driving in the “Dolomitico” is one such example. The tour is this year’s highlight among the club activities. Around two dozen contemporary classics of the BMW brand lined up at the start of a tour along some of Italy’s most beautiful roads through the mountains and valleys in the Dolomites. The participants included vehicles from club members who had even travelled from as far away as Denmark in order to share the weekend with like-minded motorists, imbibe the sound of the engines, luxuriate in joyous camaraderie, enjoy the landscape and naturally partake of Italian cuisine. Distance is no obstacle to genuine passion.