The BMW Welt "ensemble" – formed by the BMW Welt, the BMW Museum and the BMW Plant – has quickly become one of Bavaria's top attractions. This is where the past, present and future of the world's most successful premium automobile manufacturer come together to create a comprehensive brand experience. Together, the BMW Plant, the BMW Museum and the BMW Welt form a whole: the complete BMW Welt experience. The complete BMW Welt experience is an important interface between the company, the brand, its products and the visitor. The proximity of this unique building with its futuristic architecture to all major areas of the BMW Group's Munich location, combined with the opportunity of visiting the Museum and taking a guided tour of the Plant on the same day, makes this a unique three-pronged brand experience. The ensemble of the BMW Welt, the BMW Museum and the BMW Plant represents the clear commitment of the BMW Group to its home city of Munich.
1. Tradition and future at the Munich location
The Munich location is both heart and brain of the BMW Group. The BMW Plant Munich, the main plant for the BMW brand, is located right next-door to the BMW Building, also known as the "Four Cylinder". Also close by is the BMW Group's Research and Innovation Centre, where around 9,000 employees work on solutions for the future.
The history of BMW's Munich location is a story of continuity, flexibility and innovation. Over a period of more than 90 years, the company has evolved from a manufacturer of aircraft engines to a producer of upmarket motorcycles, to one of the world's leading suppliers of premium vehicles and premium services for individual mobility. The founding stone for this success story was laid with the establishment of the Bayerische Flugzeugwerke AG (BFW) in 1916 and the formation of the Bayerische Motoren Werke GmbH in 1917. Since 1922, BMW's main plant has been in Munich, in the heart of the city – open to visitors, neighbors and customers alike.
When BMW decided to build its own experience and delivery center in the late 1990s, there was no question about the perfect location: The center could only be built close to the Group headquarters, main plant and museum – because this is the home of the brand, where its successful history began.
2. The BMW Welt. Home of the brands
All customers who purchase a new BMW vehicle have the option of collecting their car from the BMW Welt, the very heart of the brand. Many BMW customers and fans – who often travel from farther afield – take advantage of this opportunity to spend an unforgettable day at the BMW Welt. The BMW Welt is so much more than just a delivery center: As a brand experience forum, it invites guests to immerse themselves in the company's world. This is where the BMW Group really comes to life: As home to the brands, the BMW Welt presents the BMW Group and its four brands together under one roof. Rotating product exhibitions, as well as all automobile series and motorcycles and a large number of interactive exhibits, open up the world of BMW, BMW M, BMW i, BMW Motorrad, MINI, Rolls Royce and Husqvarna to the visitor. Each brand has its own experience area, which distinctly captures the essence of each brand. The BMW Group company also has its own exhibition for the first time.
The design of the different areas reflects the individual brand identities and the corresponding corporate identity. Interactive exhibits provide numerous points of contact and allow each visitor to experience the brands hands-on. All vehicles are open and unlocked and can be appreciated with all senses from the driver's seat. A so-called "Product Genius" – a highly-qualified BMW Welt technical expert – is always on hand to answer more in-depth questions and provide detailed information on vehicles and technologies on a personal, one-to-one basis. The BMW Welt's unique brand experience is rounded out with a new event concept, which allows the different brands to host their own events. Events like the BMW Jazz Award or MINI Clubbing highlight brand values and are geared towards each brand's target group. In addition, the Junior Campus Portal provides the BMW Welt's younger visitors with an introduction to the world of mobility, which they are invited to discover with a passion. The BMW Welt is also a popular venue and event location.
More than 2.3 million people visited the BMW Welt in 2011 – 25 per cent more than the previous year. On 4 July 2012, the BMW Welt welcomed its ten-millionth visitor. It is, and intends to remain, Bavaria's most popular attraction.
3. The BMW Museum. History up close
The BMW Museum was built in 1973, together with the BMW headquarters, commonly known as the "Four Cylinder". The BMW Museum concept focuses on the fascination of the BMW brand. Its display of historical automobiles, motorcycles, race car and aircraft engines invites visitors to discover BMW's technological horizons and design history: from the very beginnings, early last century, all the way into the new millennium. With its wide variety of original exhibits, the BMW Museum appeals to guests from all over the world and welcomes up to 480,000 visitors a year. Visitor numbers are steadily increasing, and the BMW Museum has established itself as one of Munich's most popular museums.
Since reopening in 2008, the BMW Museum has occupied a new space, with new content: With five times the exhibition space, the BMW Museum's new approach highlights BMW's competence and innovative strength. Over an area of 5,000 m2, vehicles, themes, architecture, design and media concepts combine to form a modern composition of exhibits from past, present and future, thereby creating a memorable brand experience.
The range of topics covers the history of the BMW company, its brands and products, combined with a broad range of developments in design, technology and motor sports. Passing through 25 focus topics, visitors meander along "museum roads" and become part of an intense brand experience. The permanent BMW Museum exhibition is supplemented by fascinating temporary and special exhibitions, as well as a wide range of different cultural events. Special programs for children and young people complete the offering.
4. The BMW Plant Munich. Innovative. Creative. Flexible.
The BMW Plant Munich is the BMW Group's main plant. Located in the north of Munich, directly next to the Group headquarters, it builds more than 900 BMW 3 Series models (Touring and Sedan) and engines per day – four and eight-cylinder petrol engines, six-cylinder diesel engines, high-performance engines for BMW M models, as well as twelve-cylinder engines. Each of the six generations of the BMW 3 Series was built at this location steeped in tradition.
The main plant within the city of Munich is the heart of the BMW Group. Vehicles and engines have been produced at this location since 1922. The BMW Plant Munich's multi-layered infrastructure, which has developed in parallel with the urban residential area that surrounds it, is reflected in its sophisticated plant facilities and innovative production processes. The smooth interaction between production, logistics, transport and administration in such a confined area is one of the most impressive achievements in modern automobile construction worldwide.
The BMW Plant Munich employs a workforce of around 9,000 people from more than 50 countries, including more than 700 apprentices. The Plant houses all automobile production technologies – Press Shop, Body Shop, Paint Shop, Engine Production and Assembly, as well as a Tool Shop, Production of Equipment and Seats, and a Laboratory – in an area of 500,000 m2. It belongs to the BMW Group's global production network of 29 sites in 14 countries, and as part of the BMW Welt, also serves as a "window on the world of BMW production". Individual tours provide a unique and authentic insight into automobile production today.
The BMW Plant Munich is the "lead plant" for production of the current BMW 3 Series, and serves as an internal competence center: Process and technology know-how and the experience that comes from almost 90 years of automobile construction are transferred from here to the BMW Group's other production locations.
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