Zanardi: Human Meets Machine
The Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona marked the exciting kickoff to BMW Motorsport’s racing season in North America. But this year was special.
This year Italian racing legend Alex Zanardi joined BMW to race the #24 BMW M8 GTE in the famed 24-hour endurance race. Zanardi lost both of his legs in a CART crash in 2001. He would race again with prosthetic legs, but found them inadequate for long-term usage required in endurance racing. In order for Zanardi to race on a team with three other drivers, BMW leveraged their engineering expertise and built a one-of-a-kind steering wheel that made steering, shifting, and controlling the throttle possible using only his hands and a unique lever to break and downshift through turns.
Returning for one race before training for the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo, we jumped at the opportunity to honor Zanardi for the inspiration he is, and the engineering that went into making this possible with this film: We wanted to showcase Zanardi’s inspirational return and the BMW technology that made it possible, and champion them each as the ultimate inspiration and the Ultimate Driving Machine. This marks the first work from Matt Edwards and Wes Phelan, our newest Creative Directors.
Released: February 2019
The X7, BMW’s first standard seven-seater, is the German automaker’s biggest model ever. It’s only fitting that it launches alongside an ambitious epic poem.
Behold the Legend of Ol’ McLanden. A fictitious folktale read by Chris Pine that takes us through the heroics of an unknown hero who conquers everyday obstacles, although these hurdles are blown up to mythical proportions.
And as McLanden’s ordinary day becomes legendary at every turn, it becomes clear that not every hero has what it takes to battle the bulls of the bank, beat Roy the Destoyer, and outrace the Rogues of Razorback Ridge.
Then again, not every hero is sitting behind the wheel of the largest BMW ever created. Journey with McLanden and the epic X7, as they make everyday legendary.
Released: February 2019
BMW takes us on a journey through the automaker’s unparalleled legacy of innovation. The premium automaker has been driving future car technologies, from the first electric BMW ever built to the electric vehicles of the future, for the last 100 years.
Directed by Mark Jenkinson, the ad showcases the innovative spirit of the brand while posing the question “Are we there yet?” without answering it. Instead the spot concludes with the line “Not every journey has an end,” showcasing BMW’s iterative philosophy; they will always keep innovating the Ultimate Driving Machine.
The story begins in 1972 with a field test of the first fully electric BMW, the 1602 Elektro-Antrieb. We see the car pacing a group of runners as a team of BMW engineers is monitoring the battery. In the next scene, a few years have passed, and a reporter is on her way to witness the 1979 BMW M1 at a racetrack. Throughout the spot we get to see the revolutionary BMW Hydrogen 7 from 2005, a BMW-designed bobsled for Team USA, The first BMW Formula E race car and the brand-new electric concept vehicle, the BMW Vision M NEXT, among other innovations.
The spot is set to AC/DC’s rock classic “Thunderstruck” to further underline BMW’s legacy in electric—a journey that started way back in the ’70s.
Released: September 2019