Category Archives: Information

What to Do If You Crash Your BMW

No one wants to think about car accidents, but no matter how safely you drive, they can happen to anyone. Whether you’re driving to work, to school or just to the grocery store in your BMW, what should you do if you accidentally drive your car into a storefront or other building?

A Look at the Statistics

Accidents between cars and buildings are more common than most people think. On average, there are 60 accidents where a car strikes a building every single day in the United States alone. These accidents result in upwards of 4,000 injuries and 500 fatalities every year.

While the majority of these accidents are the result of operator error and pedal error, many of them could be prevented with the installation of bollards — steel or concrete poles secured to the sidewalk outside the business. These bollards are designed to take the impact of a car instead of letting the car strike the storefront, potentially injuring pedestrians or customers.

What should you do if you crash your BMW into a store?

Assess

As with any car accident, the first thing you need to do is to assess the situation. Are you injured? Are any of the passengers in your car injured? Is the car dangerous — on fire, or billowing smoke? If you aren’t obviously injured, you can get out of your BMW to assess the situation. If you are hurt and the car is safe, the best idea is to stay in the car — moving after an accident can end up making the injury worse.

You’ll also want to call 911 and let them know there has been an accident so emergency workers can respond.

Collect

Step two is to collect information from anyone involved in the accident. If you end up striking a storefront, this will include exchanging information with the store owner or the manager on duty. You will also want to collect contact information from any witnesses. The first responders will also gather this information, but it can be useful to have in case your insurance company requests it.

Report

Once the police have finished their work and you are free to go, get a copy of the police report and contact your insurance company to let them know you’ve been in an accident. They will contact the store’s insurance and will likely request a copy of the police report.

Once you’ve reported the accident to your insurance company, they will handle the majority of the rest of the process. They may contact you again if you were injured or if they need any additional information.

Go

Finally, whether you feel injured or not, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor. The soft-tissue injuries caused by car accidents such as whiplash can take days or weeks to manifest symptoms, so it’s important to get checked out.

Getting in to see your doctor soon can also help you out with your insurance company. If you wait more than two weeks to see your doctor, it becomes more difficult to pin the blame for the injury on your accident, so if you are out of work because of injury, you will want that paper trail to pass on to the insurance company.

Accidents happen, no matter who you are, so the only thing you can do is be prepared for them when they do occur. Knowing how to respond in the event of an accident can help the recovery process go a little more smoothly.

BMW and Racing Heaven at Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion

Words by Mitchell Weitzman

“Racing is life. Anything before or after is just waiting.” And for many, this is the week they wait for all year long. Another August, another
Monterey Car Week, and another Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion at Laguna Seca. This has been said by many before, but there is little else like historic racing, where you can see your hero cars you grew up watching, and some that you never thought you’d have the chance to see (for us younger folks), race. This is no simple cruise either, with many owners of these vintage beauties thrashing them the way they were meant to.

Photos by Mitchell Weitzman, Daniel Blodgett, and Cory Brundage

Garage queen is not an applicable word to the racing of such historic machines. BMW’s heritage is partly built around its racing heritage. Being ‘the Ultimate Driving Machine’ requires a certain degree of pedigree. From the display of racing BMWs in the paddock and on the circuit, it’s easy to see that the pedigree – the authenticity – is intact.

A blitz of howling 3.0CSL Batmobiles made up the majority of the BMW field in the highly competitive  GT category, supplemented by M1 ProCars, E21s, and a couple E30 M3s. Seeing them tangle with Porsches, and the many Datsun/Nissans (the featured marque this year) was a true spectacle. They sound rather nice as well. Diving in on the inside under braking into the corkscrew, the action was sublime.

Every year the BMW CCA sets up camp along the straight between turns 4 and 5. A large car corral is assembled as well, being able to spot the many interesting and rare BMWs on the hills of Laguna. Even a Z1 was present (the disappearing doors were closed/up, unfortunately). Inside the CCA tent were several more beautiful and classic examples, as well as dining for members and an optimal spot to watch the racing.

The elevation changes make Laguna Seca particularly fun to watch, with all sorts of hills, dips, and off and on-camber corners. The Corkscrew remains one of the most challenging turns on the planet, with its incredible drop and then down the chute into fast turns 8 and 9.

My favorite moment of the weekend? Seeing Double F1 World Champion Mika Hakkinen rip around the circuit in the 1995 Le Mans-winning McLaren F1 GTR. This is no exaggeration when I say that this is the best sounding car I’ve ever heard – it’s aural intoxication. I got right up to the inside fence at the turn 1 crest while he blasted down the front straight. He literally kicked rubber slags into my face. It was awesome.

But the sound of that mystical BMW V12 is on another planet. It can be heard from the Andretti Hairpin while screeching up the Rahal Straight towards the corkscrew. The rifle-crack downshifts, too, send chills down the spine. Onboard video can be seen here from the weekend. Please, turn the volume UP.

Entry into the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion includes full access to the paddock, where every competing car can be seen up close. Most all the drivers, owners, and mechanics are invitingly friendly, too. And while most other events during Monterey Car Week cost hundreds of dollars, the Reunion is only pocket change for a full weekend pass. The variety is immense as well, from 1930s Grand Prix cars, vintage Formula 1 cars, and to Group C prototypes.

Go once, and it won’t be your last.

Ever see Rush? This is the exact real-life car that Niki Lauda drove in the 1976 finale in Japan, where he pulled into the pits and retired from the race because of dangerous, soaking conditions.

 

Afterburners on

 

 

Checklist for Buying Your First BMW

Dream cars are as many and as varied as the people who dream of them, but almost every driver has fantasized about owning a luxury car from German manufacturer BMW. While getting your hands on a brand-new BMW might seem out of reach, if the opportunity does present itself, what do you need to do first? Here’s an easy-to-follow checklist to help you navigate the purchase of your first BMW.

Know Your Credit Score

When was the last time you pulled your credit report? You might know how much money you bring home every payday, but even if you’re making $10,000 a month, you might have trouble getting your hands on the keys to a new BMW if you’ve got bad credit.

Tools like Credit Karma are useful for keeping track of your credit accounts and finding out if someone has opened a card or taken out a loan in your name, but the credit score they provide isn’t always accurate. Take advantage of the Federal Trade Commission’s offer of a free credit report once a year — you can pull one report from each of the three major credit reporting companies (Experian, Equifax, TransUnion) and compare them to your information.

Do Your Research

There are a lot of options when it comes to getting a new — or new-to-you — BMW. Do you want to pick up your new car at the dealership, or travel to Germany to pick it up in person? Do you want a new car or a used one? Do you want to buy or lease?

Do your research and make your decisions before you get to the dealership — or, if you’re buying used, before you meet with the seller. Not only will this help you get the car you really want, but it will also keep you from getting pressured into paying more for something you didn’t need in the first place.

Don’t Forget Insurance

BMW M2 Performance Parts

Whether you’re buying new or used, you need to make sure you have insurance before you drive away. If you’re going with a new or an expensive used model, you’re not going to want to choose one of the standard car insurance companies. Instead, find a company that specializes in insurance for high-dollar vehicles like BMWs and other luxury cars.

A good insurance policy will give you better overall protection, and keep you safe in the event of an accident or theft.

Go Certified

You might be able to find a BMW on Craigslist for a steal, but you’ve got no guarantee the previous owner didn’t ride the car hard and put it up wet, so to speak. If a new BMW is out of your price range, but you have your heart set on that German manufacturing, make sure you choose a certified pre-owned BMW. Not only do these come with a warranty and roadside assistance, but the mechanics at the dealership have inspected it and repaired any problems.

There’s nothing quite like getting behind the wheel of a BMW, especially if it’s yours. Just make sure you do plenty of research, and don’t forget to pick up a good car insurance plan to protect your new investment.