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Home >> Car Details>>BMW Brief History

BMW - HITHERTO (BMW Brief History)

Gustav Otto, son of the wealthy Nikolaus August Otto, the inventor of the four-stroke internal combustion Engine. He was an aviator and one of the first flight pioneers in Bavaria. Through his passion for flying machines he transformed a genuine industry for aviation vital to the military after the outbreak of World War I. In 1910, he set up a training school and a factory that in 1913 came to be called Otto Flugzeugwerke. He concentrated on building Farman inspired pushers (he had got his own license on an Aviatik-Farman), and soon became the main supplier for the Bayerische Fliegertruppen (Royal Bavarian Flying Corps). Both the Otto-Werke and his AGO Werke companies, which from1914 developed different aircraft, were not successful in getting any orders from the Prussian military due to unexplained quality issues. In February 1916, suffering financially, the Otto company was purchased by a consortium, which included MAN AG as well as some banks. One month later, on this company’s premises the investors established a new business, Bayerische Flugzeugwerke AG. AGO closed down in 1918, the facilities being taken over by AEG.

Rapp Motorenwerke

In 1913 Karl Rapp established Rapp Motorenwerke specialized in airplane engines near the Oberwiesenfeld. After the outbreak of World War I, Rapp
started to supply aeroengines to the Austrian army. However, the engines suffered severe vibration problems, causing the military to decline purchasing the poorly performing engines. When it was decided to produce Austro-Daimler engines at Rapp Motorenwerke, it was Popp who was delegated to Munich from Vienna to supervise engine quality. Popp was convinced Karl Rapp to accept the application of Max Friz, a young aircraft engine designer and engineer at Daimler. In the space of a few weeks he designed a new aero-engine which, with an innovative carburettor and a variety of other technical details, was superior to any other German aero-engine. Later, this engine would gain world renown under the designation“BMW IIIa”. In Friz they now had an excellent chief designer on hand. On 25 July 1917 the partners in the company therefore terminated Karl Rapp’s contract. Rapp Motorenwerke GmbH was renamed Bayerische Motorenwerke GmbH.

Bayerische Flugzeugwerke (BFW) Establishment

In February 1916, the south German engineering company MAN AG and several banks purchased the aircraft builder Gustav Otto Flugmaschinenfabrik. On this company’s premises the investors established a new business, Bayerische Flugzeugwerke AG (BFW). BFW manufactured aircraft under license from the Albatros Werke of Berlin. Within a month of being set up, the company was able to supply aircraft to the war ministries of Prussia and Bavaria. However, major quality problems were encountered at the start. The German air crews frequently complained about the serious defects that appeared in the first machines from BFW. The reason for these deficiencies was a lack of precision in production. The majority of the workforce had been taken over by BFW from Otto Flugzeugwerke. It was only organizational changes and more intensive supervision of the assembly line that succeeded in resolving these problems by the end of 1916. The end of the war hit BFW hard, since military demand for aircraft collapsed. The company’s management was thus forced to look for new products with which to maintain their position in the market. Since World War I aircraft were largely built from wood to keep their weight down, BFW was equipped with the very latest joinery plant. What is more, the company still
held stocks of materials sufficient for about 200 aircraft, and worth 4.7 million reichsmarks. It therefore seemed a good idea to use both the machinery and the materials for the production of furniture and fitted kitchens. In addition, from 1921 onwards, the company manufactured motorcycles of its own design under the names of Flink and Helios. In 1921 the Austrian financier Camillo Castiglioni first announced his interest in purchasing BFW. He was supported in this by BMW’s Managing Director Franz Josef Popp. Apparently Popp was still in close contact with Castiglioni and was perhaps even privy to the latter’s plans for merging BMW with BFW. It was probably in the spring of 1922 that Castiglioni and Popp persuaded MAN to give up its shares in BFW, so that now the company belonged exclusively to Castiglioni. Then in May of the same year, when the Italian-born investor was able to acquire BMW’s engine business from Knorr-Bremse AG. The name Bayerische Flugzeugwerke AG was revived in 1926 when Udet-Flugzeugbau GmbH was changed into a joint-stock company. In the early stages, BMW AG held a stake in this company and was represented by Popp, who held a place on the Supervisory Board. In time this company was renamed to Messerschmitt, an important and leading aircraft company for the Third Reich.

BMW Car Models Details

BMW 116d Car BMW 116i Car BMW 116i Exclusive Car
BMW 116iM Sport Car BMW 118d Car BMW 118d Cabriolet Car
BMW Hitherto Source: BMW Group Site