The germ cell of BMW were the Rapp works at the edge residents of Munich of the upper meadow field. These supplied engines to the Austrian naval pilots. Starting from 20 July 1917 one firmierte as "Bavarian engine works GmbH". The new trade mark represented a rotary propeller in the white-blue, Bavarian national colors. BMW should build the best aircraft engines of the world under the technical designer max of Friz soon, but the lost war and the Versailler contract destroyed all hope in the war years of the enterprise the engines of civilian aviation grown to the corporation to offer to be able. In addition, thus BMW lived engines in the first years of the Weimar Republic of compressed air brakes, built, how the motorcycle motorrad-Boxer M 2 B 15, which proved among other things in the Nuernberger Victoria KR 1 qualities. By the assumption of the unsuccessful Bavarian aircraft plants in the proximity one arrived completely at own motorcycles. The one was called "speedy", a small, transmissionless twostoke. NR. 2 was the "Helios", a 500er route machine with along inserted BMW M 2 B 15 engine and pendulum fork. Both sold more badly than quite, and modified themselves of Friz. That sneezing realm however succeeded to Friz in December 1922: It created 2 B 15-Boxers a completely new concept, which stands to today more than all other designs for the motorcycles of BMW while maintaining M. R 32 carried the engine transverse to the driving direction. To this engine the three-course transmission was angeblockt and to the rear wheel ran directly neither a chain still another belt, but a wave. The wave drive was used from BMW to 1993 exclusive and became so a kind "second brand name".



BMW R42 - the Tourenmodell 1926

This logical concept astonished the professional world not only as route motorcycle, but showed also in the sport the teeth. Young engineer Rudolf Schleicher gave 32 ohv lightmetallhaeds and to R equipped sidesteered to date with bag cylinders from cast iron and trimmed now R 37 baptized machine on scarcely 20 HP. Thus Schleicher and Fritz Roth won the six-day travel for frightening the victory-used British 1926 in England. Before one had presented the first a cylinder machine with BMW, R 39. The sporty 250er was more expensive than competition models, sold themselves first well. Engine problems were already 1926 the reason for the attitude of their production. Up to the appearance of the next a cylinder machine five years passed, in which BMW from an enterprise fighting for surviving became to a world-well-known mark. Both sports association and ohv machine were developed further and supplemented still in each case by a 750er version. The building of aircraft engines could be taken up again, and the entrance into the automobile business, already planned, succeeded 1928 by the assumption of the Eisenacher company DIXI. Beside large boxern 1931 appeared einzylindrige R 2 with 200 cm, which were supplemented already soon by the similarly conceived model R 4. The a cylinders should always bring from now by high numbers of items money. Substantial model care and a crucial technical innovation experienced the 750er of BMW 1935 by the introduction of the teleskopfork at the front wheel, which should affect the building of motorcycles world-wide. 1936 year stole BMW of the competition with 24 HP strong ohv-500er R 5 the show. The black machine with "rohrrahmen" and teleskopforkl worked delicate and smoothly. Road-hugging property, travelling comfort and achievement were superior in the whole to all other half litre machines. Apart from innumerable world records, German championship and successes in the area haven the victory became unforgettable the 500er BMW compressor-loaded by George Meier with 1939 with the tourist Trophy on the Isle of man.



BMW R25/3 BMW R25/3 - the "Einzylinder" 1953
1949 were it so far: After currency reform and establishment of the FRG the 250th appeared R 24 and the 500er "Boxermaschine" R 51/2 as the first advancement of prewar-models. In 50's the 250er BMW to the usually-sold machines of its class and nearly each year was modernized. The boxer with 500 and 600ccm received first new engines, in order to demonstrate starting from 1956 as full rocker machines the state of the art in the building of chassis. 

The motorcycle crisis of the late 50's and the bad sales of the automobile program fell BMW into the deepest crisis since 1919. The a cylinder motorcycles and Isetta small car helped to survive BMW. Into the 60ern BMW was through the auto+'s building again slowly better. But without orders for authority BMW would have had to stop the building of motorcycles. The sales sagged from 30.000 machines 1954 on 5400 1957. In the 60's the paragraph recovered again a little, reached however world-wide never 10,000 machines in the year.


BMW R 90S  

BMW R90/S - the first "Superbike" 1973

Not least by the US export, the motorcycle business began itself to recover again in the 60's. There a trend, the end of the decade on Europe began over-sloshes should: Motorcycle-drive as leisure activities. In the spring 1969 the presented model generation stood for the new conceptions of the motorcycle driving, without leaving traditional BMW characteristics like the wave drive, high reliability and simple maintenance. The /5 series with 500, 600 and 750 ccm possessed a teleskopfork as front wheel guidance again, in the back still a rocker. Thus the modern times rung in became, those today also over 50.000 machines in the year and a conversion of 1 in the building of BMW motorcycles. Mill. DM Bavaria to one the largest European motorcycle farmer makes.


  BMW R100/GS - the last   2V-"GS" 1995


Typelist Motorbike:

1923-1926 - BMW R32   /   1925-1926 - BMW R37   /    1925-1926 - BMW R39   /   1926-1928 - BMW R42   /     1927-1928 - BMW R47   /   1928-1929 - BMW R52   /    1928-1930 - BMW R57   /   1928-1929 - BMW R62   /  1928-1929 - BMW R63   /   1929-1934 - BMW R11   /   1929-1934 - BMW R16   /   1931-1936 - BMW R2     /   1932-1937 - BMW R4     /   1936-1937 - BMW R3     /   1935-1942 - BMW R12   /     1935-1937 - BMW R5     /   1937-1938 - BMW R6     /   1937-1940 - BMW R35   /    1937-1938 - BMW R20   /    1938-1940 - BMW R23    / 1938-1940 - BMW R51   /   1938-1941 - BMW R66   /    1938-1941 - BMW R61   /    1939-1941 - BMW R71    /  1941-1944 - BMW R75   / 

1948-1950 - BMW R24     /  1951-1953 - BMW R25/0  /  1951-1953 - BMW R25/2  /  1953-1956 - BMW R25/3  /  1950-1951 - BMW R51/2  /  1951-1954 - BMW R51/3  /  1951-1952 - BMW R67     /  1952-1954 - BMW R67/2  /  1955-1956 - BMW R67/3   /  1952-1954 - BMW R68     /  1955-1960 - BMW R50/1  /  1960-1969 - BMW R50/2 / 1955-1960 - BMW R69      /   1956-1960 - BMW R60/1  /  1960-1969 - BMW R60/2  /  1956-1960 - BMW R26 /  1960-1967 - BMW R27     /   1960-1962 - BMW R50/S  /  1960-1969 - BMW R69/S /  1969-1973 - BMW R50/5  /  1969-1973 - BMW R60/5  /  1969-1973 - BMW R75/5    /  1973-1976 - BMW R60/6  /  1973-1976 - BMW R75/6  /   1973-1976 - BMW R90/6  /  1973-1976 - BMW R90/S   / 

this list works on...

but an "Oldtimer" must be 25years old ! 

by Andy Schwietzer