18 May 2020
This time, a genuine – but nevertheless very elegant – workhorse is presented in the series “Inside BMW Group Classic”. Since 1955, the BMW 501 in a taxi version has driven more than one million kilometres in and around Munich. Now it has undergone a restoration for the collection of BMW Group Classic. The mechanics experienced a real surprise when they restored the vehicle. The original V8 aluminium engine was taken apart and found to be still very much roadworthy. This was when the decision was taken to restrict restoration of the impressive vehicle to what was necessary to enable it to pass the German Technical Inspectorate’s vehicle test. In all other respects, it is in principle open road for an exceptionally authentic taxi journey through time – provided that you have some deutschmarks, naturally the taxi metre works on Germany’s old currency.
The models of the wonderfully sporty brand BMW M were spectacular and they continue to remain so. Their character inspired by motor sport has been a legend since the 1970s. However, the fact that they have been with us for more than 40 years also owes much to early decisions about the appearance of the marque. Today, these attributes constitute part of what is known as Corporate Identity: Three colours – blue stands for the BMW brand, red for motor sport and violet for the unique combination of the two. “The derivation of the BMW M(otorsport) colours is as simple as it is ingenious. Rarely has a colour combination generated so much brand value and recognition,” commented Marc Thiesbürger, an expert from the BMW Group Archive. From today’s perspective, it is fascinating that together with the founder of BMW Motorsport GmbH, Jochen Neerpasch, as well as Wolfgang Seehaus (at the time BMW Interior Designer) and Manfred Rennen (at the time BMW Exterior Designer), BMW managers were directly involved in the development. The website BMW.com has created a lively and beautifully illustrated story on the sporting tricolour in the series “BMW Explained”.
The big classic car pageants have all been postponed on account of the current situation – most important among them the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este. Why not attempt to emulate this coming together of automobile passion in the virtual world? This is precisely what classic car fans from Romania have attempted to do in a show curated by BMW Romania. The impressive programme of Web events under the universal title “FREUDE” or “PLEASURE” ranges from highlights of the fantastic Tiriac Collection to the rarities from the collection of Peter Gleeson. Celebrity contributors also include the American BMW expert Jackie Jouret, who rediscovered Elvis Presley’s BMW 507. The show will last around four hours and it will be presented partly in Romanian and partly in English. However, those passages of the show that will surely only be comprehensible for a few viewers outside the host country, are also likely to be well worth watching due to the stupendous vehicles being presented.
Friends of the third model generation of the BMW 3 Series with the internal E36 code clearly don’t like to lose a moment’s time. The vehicles had only just been on the market for 20 years and thereby made it into the venerable category of “youngtimers” or modern classics, when a group of owners formed their official type club. We are now ten years on. And with immaculate timing, the successor generation of the BMW 3 Series (E46) was added in 2018. The club places noticeably high value on authentic preservation of the vehicles, and there is an extremely active forum and support for procurement of parts and accessories. After a hard day’s work, the members let their hair down at a fun event known as “Bump Barbie”. Members come together to flaunt their expertise as they repair their metal dresses and enjoy a good barbecue after fixing the dents.