There are a number of acronyms that stick out in people’s minds, and BMW is the most recognizable in the car industry. Although the designs and models of cars built in the last two decades have created the ideal image for BMW, the history dating 90+ years ago set up the tone for today with numerous marquee vehicles.
In 1913, Karl Friedrich Rapp set up a business to manufacture aero engines. Rapp’s aero engines were a huge success, but unfortunately for him they were too popular. Within a year, the company had expanded too much and he left the company because of various problems. In his place came Franz Josef Popp, who laid the foundations for what BMW is today.
In 1927, a new economy car known as the Dixi 3/15 appeared on the German market. After some negotiating and dealing, Popp made a deal with the Dixi Company and the company and its manufacturing licenses became BMW.
There were a couple of other models built during these transitional phases with Dixi and BMW, but many people consider the first true BMW vehicle to be the 303. The 303 was the first car to have the signature BMW double-kidney grille. It had a six-cylinder engine as oppose to the 3/20’s four-cylinder engine, which enhanced the vehicle.
Throughout the 1930’s there were several BMW models that were created and fascinated the public. There was the 327, 328, 329, 335 and much more. As time passed, the design became much more intricate and the overall quality of the BMW vehicle continuously enhanced.
The 500 and 600 series’ seemed to struggle as sells were down. Not many people were feeling the designs and neither of these series’ seemed to meet BMW’s standards. The 700 series came about and saved BMW during the 1950’s. The 700 series had become BMW’s first unitary construction car.
The 700 coupe entered production in August 1959 and the 700 Saloon was produced by the end of 1959. Although expensive, the overall design and enhanced engine was an instant hit among the public. It sold over 188,000 and became the company’s best selling car since 1945.
The most recognizable classic BMW of the 50’s is by far the 507. The production cars had the 3.2 liter V8 engine in twin-carburetor form. Despite the remarkable appearance and impeccable engine quality, the car was never a strong seller. The most probable cause was the high price it was selling at, but it still remains as a classic.
There have been a plethora of models released and BMW has remained one of the top car manufacturer’s. Although it has been the recent models that people remember, it was the history of BMW that has revolutionized the models that are presented today.