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Para-athlete Léa Bayekula enjoys the ultimate BMW Munich Experience at the birthplace of "Sheer Driving Pleasure".

On a short trip, she explores BMW Welt, the BMW Museum and the BMW M Driving Academy in Maisach, which is just over 30 minutes away.

8 July 2024

Léa Bayekula at BMW WeltLéa Bayekula at BMW Welt

Munich has a special attraction for BMW fans. Léa Bayekula is a successful para-athlete from Belgium, an influencer for Chanel, and an expert when it comes to finding joie de vivre. Until now, she has known Munich mainly from her athletic competitions. But this time, as an enthusiastic BMW driver, she will be exploring the famous sights of the “Bayerische Motoren Werke” (➜ Read also: The BMW name and its history) on a short trip.

Wonder – Ambition – Magic

BMW Welt

The impressive design of BMW Welt in Munich was created by the renowned architects Coop Himmelb(l)au, who are known for their innovative and avant-garde designs. Particularly noteworthy is the striking roof, which is reminiscent of a floating cloud and conveys both lightness and dynamism. An architectural masterpiece and landmark of modern construction.

Bayekula describes her visit to BMW Welt as an unforgettable experience. “It was simply incredible for me to be able to discover this place and experience the atmosphere and ambience of the brand up close”, she says.

BMW Welt offers its visitors a wide range of interactive exhibitions and experiences. Bayekula was particularly impressed by an innovation of a special kind: “I bought a snack from some kind of futuristic machine – that was fun! But to learn that the vehicle handover takes place at this location is simply crazy!” This combination of vision of the future and practical application gives BMW Welt a unique vibrancy.

A central aspect of BMW Welt is a look into the future of mobility. Bayekula was particularly interested in the sustainable and ecological innovations presented there. “You can clearly see that the brand has evolved over time”, she says. “All the experiences at this location show how much the future of BMW will be focussed on sustainability (➜ Read also: Sustainability in every car BMW builds), a sense of responsibility, and ecological innovation”.

Not only an architectural masterpiece but also a place where the future of mobility becomes tangible. For visitors like Bayekula, BMW Welt offers a unique opportunity to experience the development and visions of the BMW Group first hand.

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BMW M8 Competition Coupé:
Consumption combined l/100 km 11,4
CO2 emissions combined g/km 260
CO2 class G

What is BMW Welt?

BMW Welt in Munich fascinates visitors with its futuristic architecture and interactive exhibitions featuring the latest vehicles and technologies of the BMW Group. In addition to presenting the BMW, BMW Motorrad, MINI, and Rolls-Royce brands, it serves as a handover centre for new vehicles. Events and conferences are organised on a regular basis.

History – Passion – Development

BMW Museum

Bayekula reports on her guided tour of the BMW Museum: “I really enjoyed discovering the history of BMW as well as the design and the staging on every floor and in every room. I felt like I was travelling through time – a journey into the past but also into the future of BMW. For example, I didn’t realise that BMW used to make aircraft engines (➜ Read also: The BMW logo – meaning and history). The museum offers so many surprises that I practically had to be shooed out to keep to the schedule!”

The visit to BMW Welt and the BMW Museum reinforced her view of the brand and their commitment to mobility for all. “The museum is completely accessible; there is a lift and ramps that allow free movement”, says Bayekula. To be honest, thanks to this visit, I realised that BMW is much more than just a car brand – it’s a world of its own”.

Bayekula looks back on the impressions she had: “For me, visiting these two places remains an unforgettable memory. At the BMW Museum, I learnt about the history of the brand (➜ Read also: “Sheer driving pleasure”: the history of the BMW slogan), and at BMW Welt, I was able to immerse myself in the entire BMW universe with even more concepts and experiences”.

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Where is the BMW Museum?

Directly opposite BMW Welt is the BMW Museum Munich, where you can experience the BMW brand – from its beginnings to the present day. The museum offers an impressive permanent exhibition with historic vehicles, designs and prototypes, and milestones from 100 years of BMW Group history as well as regularly changing exhibits.

Power - Adrenalin - Sensation

BMW M Driving Academy

BMW M4 Competition Coupé:
Consumption combined l/100 km 9,9
CO2 emissions combined g/km 223
CO2 Class G

The crowning moment of Bayekula’s BMW Munich Experience was a driving safety training course at the BMW M Driving Academy in Maisach, just a few kilometres outside Munich.

Bayekula enthusiastically describes her exchange with BMW M Driving Instructor Tina Schmidt-Kiendl (➜ Read also: When you can’t stop sheer driving pleasure), whom she knows from her training at the BMW Driving Academy: “I was quite happy that Tina was there. She welcomed us with a beaming smile and explained everything we needed to know for a good drive. Her personal story as a wheelchair user radiated determination and the freedom to go her own way. Tina and I share the desire to be independent. Thanks to her, I felt ready to improve my driving technique with a positive feeling!”

During the practical part of the training at the BMW M Driving Academy, Bayekula had to face several challenges. “The exercises were real challenges for me that I had to master driving around the cones at high speed whilst keeping my hands on the steering wheel at 3 and 9 o’clock. I can do that without any problems. I now feel much more confident when driving. Above all, I have the desire to learn more and continue this experience!”

Bayekula is familiar with values such as perseverance and self-conquest from her sporting career. They are also part of the programme at the BMW M Driving Academy.

Bayekula would also like to encourage people with reduced mobility who may be hesitant to try such a driving training programme: “I can only recommend getting started – it’s incredible! Feeling comfortable behind the wheel means experiencing freedom. With a suitably adapted car, you feel independent – no barriers, no differences. Everyone really should take the opportunity to complete such a course”.

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What is the BMW M Driving Academy?

The BMW M Driving Academy in Maisach near Munich is a training centre where BMW Group vehicles can be experienced under professional guidance. Precise handling, safe braking, and high-speed manoeuvres are taught. The varied courses offer a safe environment in which people can improve their driving skills.

BMW WeltBMW MuseumBMW M Driving Academy

Am Olympiapark 1, 80809 Munich, Germany

Am Olympiapark 2, 80809 Munich, Germany

BMW Allee 1, 84072 Maisach, Germany

Opening times: Mon – Sat: 7:00 a.m. – midnight 9:00 a.m. – midnight

Opening times: Tue – Sun: 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Opening hours: by appointment

Free admission

Admission prices:

Single ticket: €12.00 EUR
Reduced*: €8.00
Group (at least 5 persons) per person: €11.00
Family (max. 2 adults and 3 children under 18 years): €29.00

Prices vary depending on the course

Parking fees 15 minutes free of charge, thereafter €2.50 per hour, maximum daily rate: €19.00

Parking fees; 15 minutes free of charge; thereafter, €2.50 per hour; maximum daily rate: €19.00

Free parking facilities

Author: Tassilo Hager; Art: Lucas Lemuth, Madita O’Sullivan, Verena Aichinger; Photos: BMW; Video: Patrick Lejuste

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