PressClub South Africa · Article.
BMW and MINI Driving Experience relaunches in the USA.
Thu Jan 26 06:47:02 CET 2017 Press Release
The BMW Performance Centers in the USA are the next international locations to meet the high demands that BMW M GmbH places on the driver safety offerings of the BMW and MINI Driving Experience.
Vivien Lindsay Pieterse
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Munich. BMW of North America is allowing customers to experience the successful driver training courses of the BMW and MINI Driving Experience in the USA too. The BMW Performance Center West in southern California and the BMW Performance Center East in Spartanburg now bear the seal of quality “BMW Driving Experience, Official Partner of BMW M.” The basis for this is the successful certification by a team of inspectors from the BMW and MINI Driving Experience in Germany. The first international location to be awarded this status was the BMW and MINI Driving Experience in the Netherlands in 2015.
“We are pleased to present the second partner in the internationalisation of our successful driver safety programme at the BMW and MINI Driving Experience,” said Frank van Meel, President of BMW M GmbH. “As with the pilot project in the Netherlands, the BMW Performance Centers in the USA fully comply with all the prerequisites for the certification. Because of this, our customers in North America can now look forward to training courses that meet the high standards of the BMW and MINI Driving Experience in Germany.”
“The BMW Performance Center in Spartanburg has been helping drivers improve their skills, become safer drivers and experience the Ultimate Driving Machine in a very dynamic way since 1999. Now with the completion of our new BMW Performance Center West, we are better able to serve our many west coast customers.” stated Ludwig Willisch President and CEO of BMW of North America, LLC. “With this certification by BMW M, we can ensure consistency of our BMW and MINI Driving Experiences at both US locations and worldwide.” continued Willisch.
The BMW Performance Center West is the latest location for the BMW and MINI Driving Experience in North America. It is located a few kilometres outside La Quinta, about two hours’ drive southeast of Los Angeles and was the second of its type in the USA when it was opened in 2014. It covers an area of about 130,000 m² and features a 2.25-kilometre circuit with a 25,000-m² paddock, a skid pad, and a 790-m² performance facility. The BMW Performance Center West is located on the premises of partner and premium automobile club “The Thermal Club”. 8.9 kilometres of racetrack and areas for maintenance and repairs are available here. The main building has a 21-metre control tower, while an outbuilding houses the fleet of track cars and safety cars.
The range of courses on offer at the BMW Performance Center West is extensive. Car Control Clinics and Teen Driving Schools are aimed at young drivers and beginners. Offerings such as the M School and Advanced M School cater for more advanced drivers and the field of racing. Tailored programmes, such as those for business customers, are also available.
In 1999, BMW opened the BMW Performance Center East not far from the BMW plant in Spartanburg, South Carolina. This was the company’s first permanent performance driving centre in the USA. Since its opening, more than 161,000 BMW customers have taken part in courses. More than 9,700 customers have attended courses at the BMW Performance Center West in the first two years since it was opened.
The international certification concept developed by the BMW and MINI Driving Experience in Germany is aimed at ensuring all locations meet or exceed uniform, premium global standards regarding the customer experience. Customers benefit from the specific know-how and experience of the BMW instructors in regions all over the world. After the Netherlands and the USA, further certifications are being prepared in South Korea, South Africa and Scandinavia.
About the BMW and MINI Driving Experience The BMW and MINI Driving Experience is part of BMW M GmbH. As one of the first provides of driver training courses, it has been thrilling its customers with driving experiences in BMW Group vehicles since 1977. The BMW and MINI Driving Experience currently offers about 50 different training courses for BMW and MINI models, as well as BMW motorcycles, in over 30 countries around the world – all under the watchful eye of professional instructors. In Germany alone, over 25,000 people took part in training courses in 2016. The global figure for the same year was over 100,000.
Under the slogan “Passion leaves traces”, the BMW and MINI Driving Experience plays an important role in improving driving safety on public roads, while at the same time conveying the joy of driving for which BMW is renowned. The BMW and MINI Driving Experience fulfils its social responsibility with its driver safety courses on asphalt and snow, which give the customers all the basics they need to drive safely and competently. The same can be said of the internal BMW driver training for approximately 20 different internal driving licences. On the other side of the coin are spectacular racetrack and drifting courses, which allow customers to enjoy emotional and action-packed experiences in powerful BMW M vehicles.
As well as the regular range of training courses, the BMW and MINI Driving Experience also places great importance on meeting the customer’s specific desires. A team specialising in corporate events and incentives works closely with the customer to put together packages tailored to the customer’s requirements.
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