Do you have a favorite?
BMW is wicked clever for many reasons, such as fully embracing its past. Other automakers, on occasion, build a retro concept of sorts, but BMW has been doing this on a regular basis for the past several years. The latest example, of course, is the just unveiled 2002 Hommage Concept. Reaction has so far been mostly positive, but we figured it’d be fun to look back at previous Hommage concepts. Which of these is your favorite? Do you think BMW consistently gets the styling right, or is it going way overboard with the retro?
Unveiled in 2008, the M1 Concept was a 30th anniversary tribute to the iconic M1 sports car. Styled under the guidance of now former BMW design chief Chris Bangle, the M1 Hommage’s exterior dimensions are very similar to the original car’s; only the extended wheelbase indicates a larger interior. It’s also mid-engined. BMW designers obviously embraced this project and even used it as a source of inspiration for future production models. But sadly, the M1 Concept will forever remain just that, a concept.
The 328 Hommage Concept might just be the most retro of them all. Revealed in 2011, the 328 Hommage is a proper tribute to BMWs of the 1930s. Makes sense considering BMW launched this as a part of its 75th birthday celebrations. Aside from all of that retro goodness, the 328 concept was also a practice in lightweight construction techniques. For example, major parts of the interior and exterior are made from carbon fiber reinforced plastic. Power comes from a three-liter, six-cylinder engine. Overall, the 328 concept is a stunning retro tribute to BMW’s past while, at the same time, successfully utilizes building techniques and materials used today.
In 2006, BMW presented the Concept Coupe Mille Miglia. The "Hommage" moniker didn't exist at this point, but the overall idea is the same. This is a direct tribute to the pre-World War II days of European racing and innovation. Obviously all motor racing came to a halt during the conflict. This concept is inspired by the 1940’s 328 Mille Miglia Touring Coupe, which won the grueling race that year. Like the 328 Hommage Concept, this one also takes advantage of lightweight build materials and is powered by the same six-cylinder engine found in the Z4 M Coupe at the time.
It was only last year when BMW revealed this thing of absolute beauty: the 3.0 CSL Hommage R Concept. This was made to celebrate both the 40th anniversary of BMW in North America as well as its racing success with the 3.0 CSL in 1975. Everything about this car is epic, from its carbon fiber roll cage to its ultra-sophisticated, super-smooth information display that fits in perfectly with the car’s minimalist interior design philosophy. The exterior has the same paint job as the original as well as a dramatic rear wing. Who wouldn’t want to see this concept hit the track in a DTM race today?
Last up is the most recent 2002 Hommage. We felt it deserved an encore appearance. Inspired by the 2002 Turbo, the M2 Turbo Hommage is, of course, based off the M2, only it’s been re-skinned and features extended wheel arches with those bulging vent tunnels. As is the case with all of these concepts, this one will never see production. The styling may not be for everyone, but that’s OK. BMW is rightly proud of its past sports car creations, and we can’t wait to see what’ll come up in the coming years.