TopAuto recently had the chance to visit BMW’s automotive museum outside its headquarters in Munich, Germany, while attending a conference on the company’s ongoing projects.
The museum is situated between the automaker’s head office and its famous Welt exhibition centre, which doubles as a dealership and a showroom for all of BMW’s latest models, including those from both Mini and Rolls-Royce.
The museum, on the other hand, houses a collection of vehicles from throughout the carmaker’s history since it first began operations in 1916.
While the museum is primarily focused on the brand’s history with automobiles, there were displays acknowledging BMW’s history in aviation, including models of the enormous engines used to power German fighter planes in both World Wars.
Other vehicles from the automaker’s earliest days include a collection of motorcycles dating as far back as the 1920s, one of which was equipped with a rather basic-looking sidecar.
Further along the tour, we came across a series of BMWs from the 1940s, which are kept in pristine condition and are thoroughly cleaned twice a day – every single day of the year.
A long display then gave us a chance to see BMW’s efforts throughout the decade, with models such as the iconic 3 Series dating back as far as 1975.
It was an interesting opportunity to view old and new side-by-side, and to see how cars have shifted away from the boxy and rigid shapes of the mid-20th century to the incredibly smooth and curved models of the early 2000s.
The museum also houses a small sample of vehicles from the automaker’s racing efforts, including an early Formula 1 car, a track-ready M3, and a 3.0-litre CSL decked out in BMW’s M colours of blue, violet, and red.
It wasn’t just older cars in the collection, however, as towards the end of the museum we came across a series of experimental concept cars, such as the mid-engined BMW M1 Hommage from 2008 – which has partially inspired the design of the new BMW i8.
Also housed there was the 2015 3.0-litre CSL Hommage concept car which was spectacular to behold with eye-catching black and gold rims and blue brake calipers, a white paint scheme, and the M colours.
Perhaps the most interesting concept car on display though was the BMW Vision M Next – a futuristic electric car creation boasting unusual features such as side mirrors with facial recognition to unlock the doors, a built-in soundtrack composed by Hanz Zimmer, and a racing-style steering wheel with an attached glass driver display.
BMW Museum Munich
Keyword: Amazing cars at the BMW museum in Germany – Photos