BMW UK kindly invited our Social Media Manager, Joseph Kidd, down to Goodwood Festival of Speed this year.
Held in the beautiful parkland surrounding Goodwood House, the Festival of Speed presented by Mastercard is motorsport's ultimate summer garden party, an intoxicating celebration of the world's most glamorous sport. Nowhere else will you get so close to the cars and bikes as they blast up the hillclimb track; nowhere else will you enjoy such unrestricted access to the machines and the drivers who made them famous.
Joseph caught a flight down on the Thursday from Edinburgh and travelled to the festivals closest airport, which is London Gatwick.
With Thursday being the kick-start to the event, it was exciting to have the opportunity to see the cars and incredible manufacturer stands ahead of the weekend rush.
The BMW UK stand was positioned perfectly within the massively impressive event space, having caught our eye as soon as we passed the main entrance.
Here they had the latest BMW M GmbH products on display, such as the new M2, M3 Touring and BMW M8 Convertible. The most powerful M model ever made (XM Label Edition) also made an appearance on the stand, and with a power output of 748hp and 1,000 Nm system torque, there was definitely a buzz about it!
The stand was also host to iconic models from BMW’s illustrious past, from the legendary BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile (the most exclusive automobile BMW M has ever produced) to the revered BMW 2002 Turbo. BMW fans were certainly in for a treat upon arrival.
BMW outperformed as expected... see below a condensed list of our favourite moments from this year's festival.
• The new BMW 5 Series Saloon was seen in the UK for the first time
• Hydrogen-powered record breaker, the BMW H2R, was unleashed at Goodwood
• The BMW iX5 Hydrogen was on display and participated in the Hillclimb
• The new and formidable BMW M3 CS sprinted up the hill
• The BMW 3.0 CSL was displayed Trackside on the stand
• Visitors were entertained by Duke, a unique beat boxing group, and DJs including Stephanie, Sophie and the Boom Collective
• Former British Touring Car Championship driver Paul O’Neill presented on the stand throughout the weekend
An iconic Festival of Speed feature, the hillclimb sees road and race cars and bikes, old and new, careering up Goodwood Hill.
Tackling the iconic hill climb on behalf of BMW was the ground-breaking H2R Record Car, the new iX5 Hydrogen and the utterly exclusive M3 CS.
The M3 CS is BMW's latest special-edition model and teams a 550 hp six-cylinder in-line engine with an eight-speed M Steptronic transmission and the M xDrive intelligent all-wheel-drive system. These combined produce a 0 to 62 mph time of just 3.4 seconds and on to an electronically limited 188 mph top speed.
All-electric drive arrived in the BMW 5 Series Saloon for the first time. The i5 eDrive40 offers up to 361-mile range, whilst the i5 M60 xDrive delivers scintillating performance with 0-62mph in 3.8s. The new generation of the world's most successful business saloon was also seen on the hill as part of the ‘First Glance’ category.
Representing BMW’s latest iteration of hydrogen fuel cell technology was the BMW iX5 Hydrogen, which was joined by the roaring H2R on the hill. Based on the current BMW X5, it was first unveiled as a concept at the IAA show in 2019. After four years of development work, a double-digit vehicle fleet is now being employed internationally for demonstration and trial purposes for various target groups.
Helping steer the BMWs up the hill was four-times BTCC champion and West Surrey Racing driver, Colin Turkington. He was joined by his team-mates Jake Hill, Stephen Jelley and Adam Morgan along with racing driver Charlie Martin throughout the long weekend.
The Stable Yard, was once again dedicated to BMW. It told the story of Vision iCircular to illustrate the company’s determination to become the most sustainable manufacturer.
Visitors were not only be able to see the brand’s latest range of all-electric and electrified models, but also many notable cars from the past fifty years.
The first electric BMW, the 1602e, was on display alongside others including the efficient 525e, from the 1980’s, and the i8 - BMW’s first ever plug-in hybrid sports car.