Think you know everything about your BMW vehicle or the brand? Quiz yourself with these 10 interesting facts we bet you didn’t know! With a long history in the automotive industry, BMW has plenty of interesting stories to tell. There’s probably a lot you didn’t know that went into the creation of your vehicle! As passionate BMW experts, Midwest Performance Cars in Chicago, Illinois loves to learn more about the cars we fix. Let us know if these facts surprised you! We would love to hear your response!
- What Does BMW Stand For?
- How Did the Company Start Out?
- What Was the First Car Made by BMW?
- How Fast Were Early BMW Motorcycles?
- What Other Major Manufacturer Did BMW Nearly Join?
- When Did BMW Release Their First Electric Car?
- What Do the BMW Headquarters Resemble?
- Who Was Supposed to Build the M1?
- What Does the Logo Badge Represent?
- Where Does BMW Build Classic Car Parts?
Bayerische Motoren Werke, or Bavarian Motor Works in English.
In World War I, BMW produced airplane engines to support Germany’s demand for planes and their parts. When the country was banned from producing warplanes at the end of the war, BMW transitioned to motorcycle production.
BMW moved into automobile production after the purchase of Automobilwerk Eisenach in 1928. They gained the rights to build the Dixi car, which were badged as BMW in 1929. They were soon replaced by an updated version, the BMW 3/15 DA-2.
In 1937, BMW built the world’s fastest motorcycle — a supercharged deathtrap capable of hitting speeds up to 173.7 mph. It might not have been the safest ride, but it demonstrated BMW’s drive to be the best.
In the late 1950’s, BMW nearly became part of Mercedes when the parent company moved as BMW neared bankruptcy.
1972! Proving that the company has always pushed the boundaries of car-making, BMW produced its first electric vehicle in 1972. Although it never made it to the commercial market due to its poor battery life, it proves the company’s motivation to innovate.
A four-cylinder engine! The headquarters were designed in the shape of the historically important four-cylinder engine that propelled automotive technology to all of its success.
In 1970, BMW built the first “M” car in cooperation with Lamborghini in preparation for a race. The Germans provided the engine and suspension with the understanding that the Italians would take care of the rest. When Lamborghini pulled out prior to the race, BMW built the rest of the vehicle, the legendary M1.
If you said a spinning propeller, you are incorrect! Many people believe the BMW logo recalls their start in aircraft manufacturing, but it actually represents the flag of their region — Bavaria.
BMW continues to make classic vehicles and parts in their old factory located in Munich.