Forget the big grilles – BMW’s biggest mistake is the lack of desire to bring a real retro model to life.
BMW has a very interesting edge when it comes to production cars. No matter what, under any circumstance, can a production model actually be derived from a concept. Well, that’s almost true – BMW did base the i8 almost entirely on the concept that preceded it, but that’s the one exception. Why is this, though? Over the years, the company has produced a number of concepts that would make amazing production models – especially those with some Retro DNA. In fact, fans everywhere are begging for a retro-inspired BMW, but the company just won’t give it.
According to BMW’s Design Boss, Adrian van Hooydonk, the company actually has zero interest in ever giving us a modern, retro-styled car. And this is actually despite the public’s obsessive desire for such a model, the most recent being the Garmisch concept.
“That was a faithful recreation of a concept car created by Marcello Gandini. The most interesting reactions were from the American market, where people said: ‘if you make that as an electric car, that would be my next car”
So, despite a huge demand for BMW to look back to its roots, the company, honestly, doesn’t evne think about it. Hooydonk admits that the company does look back to previous successes and does discuss what can be brough back to life or re-done without going retro, but, as he put it, “We feel we should continue the fire, as opposed to worshipping the ashes, if you know what I mean.”
And, you know what that means. Unless there’s some major changes within the bowels of BMW, we’re never going to see a true retro design surface. Once could argue that this is one of those things that sets BWM apart from brands like Dodge, Chevy, and Ford, but that’s not a distinguishment that needs to be made. Every single “homage” car the company has made has been downright fantastic. The reimagining of greats like the M1 or the 3.0 CSL resonates with fanboys and dreamers alike.
BMW might not need to do a retro model, but there are a lot of people that seem to think BMW has lost its path despite Hooydonk’s believe otherwise. Would a production model of the Garmisch concept make people happier? I certainly believe so, and the company is making a mistake by not taking advantage of such an amazing creation.