CNBC’s “BMW: A Driving Obsession” will premiere on Wednesday, July 13th at 9pm ET. The documentary will repeat that evening at 10pm ET, 12am ET and 1am ET.
CNBC goes inside one of the most successfully managed brands and companies in the world — BMW. Its familiar blue and white logo stands as the symbol of prestigious, high-performance, luxury cars. A one-time aircraft engine manufacturer that eventually moved to motorcycles and offbeat sports sedans, BMW today commands brand recognition and respect that is the envy of the commercial world.
CNBC Correspondent Carl Quintanilla takes viewers inside BMW’s secretive Tech Center, where teams of engineers obsess over the technical and mechanical details that the company says justify its cars’ high prices. Acoustic specialists consider every sound in the car, from the exhaust note to the window motors; ergonomic engineers labor over the stunningly complex mechanical labyrinth that is a modern seat; and crash specialists deliberately wreck a parade of high-dollar vehicles to improve safety.
BMW is a company enjoying success, but also facing significant challenges. Growing environmental and political pressures are making it increasingly tough to market high-performance cars, but BMW is staking its future on its ability to build vehicles that are both sustainable and fun. BMW also faces daunting competition, not only from other German manufacturers like Audi, but also from carmakers in Japan, Korea — and soon, China.
BMW: A Driving Obsession is the fascinating story behind a once small, struggling company that transformed itself into a global luxury car powerhouse, and is now going flat out to maintain its edge.
The 60 minutes documentary will include the following topics:
THEATRE OF THE BUY
BMW headquarters is located on the north end of Munich. And right next door is the BMW Welt – or world – the ultimate showcase for the cars. Here you can immerse yourself in BMW production, engineering and innovation.
BMW TECH CENTER
A few blocks from BMW headquarters is the FIZ, the company’s research and development center. Here engineers work to enhance the performance and design of BMW cars, and you might say, obsess over what makes a premium car. CNBC takes you inside the highly secretive facility.
BMW AND CULTURE
What better way to enhance your reputation than to sponsor the transformation of your products into art? BMW did just that with a series of “art cars.” Since 1975, seventeen famous artists have designed “art cars” on behalf of BMW.
Rolls Royce may be the most precious gem in BMW’s crown. A vehicle of choice for the world’s wealthiest with a price tag only they can afford. It’s been the carriage of royalty, sheiks and stars.
Premieres Wednesday, July 13th 9p | 10p | 12a | 1a ET