The company can trace its origins all the way back to the late 1920s. It
was formed by the joining together of three earlier German industrial
equipment and aircraft manufacturing corporations. The new company adopted
the name Bayerische Motoren Werke AG, which their current moniker is an
Bayerische Motoren Werke brought their first automobile to market in 1927.
Although they have suffered a few rough periods financially, such as the
years directly following World War II, they have successfully marketed
automobiles and motorcycles both at home in Germany and internationally for
nearly 80 years. Today, they are one of the leading upscale, luxury marques
in the world.
5 Cool Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About BMW
The company’s roundel logo was inspired by an airplane propeller.
Since the company has roots in airplane manufacturing, it’s no great
surprise that their logo would be influenced by the aeronautical world. In
addition, the now iconic symbol’s blue and white color scheme was lifted
from the Bavarian Flag. Bavaria is the region of Germany where the company
The first model to feature the company’s trademark front grille
design was the 303 saloon of 1933.
Today, the German marque’s twin kidney grille is instantly recognizable the
world over. The car on which this classic styling cue originated, the 303,
is now very rare and extremely collectible.
At one time, the company made a direct competitor to the tiny and
economical Volkswagen Beetle.
The 700 was produced from 1959 until 1965. Just like the Beetle, it
featured a very small, lightweight chassis, a rear-engine layout, and an
air-cooled boxer engine. Unlike VW’s “people’s car,” though, it never
really caught on with buyers, despite good initial sales.
The company built production-ready prototypes of several rumored
models that never made it to show rooms.
There have been a number of cars over the years, such as the 8-Series
convertible and E39 M5 Touring, that were hinted at and hotly anticipated
by enthusiasts, but that never made the final step to production. It turns
out that the company actual did make a few running, road-ready examples of
these cars but then canceled production at the last minute due to
discouraging market research and sales projections.
BMW‘s first-ever car was actually a direct copy of an older English
The “Dixi,” which was produced from 1927-1929, was based off of British
company Austin’s “Seven” model. The newly-established German company did
this to save on engineering and design costs.
Popular BMW Models
Today, the company produces a broader, more varied range of vehicles than
at any other time in its history. From compact sedans to large SUVs to
high-tech sports cars, the German manufacturer offers a lot to choose from.
Their top current models include:
The BMW X5 is a leader in the competitive luxury midsize SUV segment.
Bristling with advanced technology and long list of active and passive
safety features, the BMW X5 is equally at home cruising crowded city
streets and powering over rough off-road trails.
Since its debut in 1975, the 3-Series line of compact coupes, sedans, and
convertibles has been a perennial best-seller for the company. Now it its
sixth generation, the 3-Series has a reputation as one of the best-handling
most, well-engineered vehicles produced at nearly any price. Also checkout the car comparison between the BMW 3-series and the Audi A4: Audi A4 vs. BMW 3-Series
The 7-Series is the company’s flagship large luxury sedan. It features a
variety of powerful 8 and 12 cylinder engines and, according to many, the
most well-balanced and precise handling chassis of any car its size.