The BMW Car Club of the Philippines (BMWCCP) recently celebrated its 18th anniversary with a dinner party in a Makati City restaurant.
The early days of the club date back to 2001 when a group of five BMW owners banded together to share their love for the brand. The young enthusiasts started organizing eyeball events and inviting like-minded participants to these activities, leading to the formal registration of the BMW Car Club of the Philippines, Inc. with the Securities and Exchange Commission in 2003, and culminating in its formal recognition by the Munich, Germany-based International Council of BMW Clubs.
Today, the BMWCCP organizes events that go beyond motoring and having fun with the German machines. Current activities include corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives such as providing aid to the Shepherd of the Hills Children’s Foundation, the Philippine National Red Cross’s Rizal Chapter, and the Philippine School for the Deaf. “We’re identifying and formulating other CSR activities to assist organizations that help those with terminal or incurable diseases and other marginalized sectors of society,” says BMWCCP vice president for events Nini Valenzuela.
The one constant in the club — from its birth to the present — is the fun factor. “The mission of our club is to deliver the total BMW ownership experience,” says BMWCCP president Ericson Ang. “Becoming a member is to embark a journey that leads to learning about the many aspects of the BMW, from its history, technological progress and advances, to the care and maintenance that goes into enhancing the owners’ enjoyment and appreciation. You can participate in motoring that helps you explore the edge of your car’s physical limits in a safe and orderly environment.” Ang added the organization has garnered the prestigious International Council of BMW Clubs’ “Club of the Year” award in 2016, and is the first BMW Club in Asia — maybe even the world — equipped with its own Club Service Mobile.
Applicants for membership, of course, need to own a BMW. “An applicant who’s accepted for membership “buys into” a journey of camaraderie on the brand,” says BMWCCP vice president for Membership Morell Carandang. “If willing, he becomes a connoisseur of these mechanical and electronic marvels as pieces of mobile art, comfort, transportation and joy. He becomes heir to the brand’s place in automotive history, the car club’s long journey, thereby becoming a member of the community of BMW enthusiasts and cognoscenti.”
Meanwhile, BMWCCP vice president for sponsorship Manny Reyes, said this year’s Bimmerfest was a success. “As far as the club’s history goes, the goal of every Bimmerfest is to present the BMW brand in its best light in all models or forms. The unwritten part of this goal of course is to go bigger, higher and better than the last one. Very recently, we had another spectacular Bimmerfest the Greenfield District in Mandaluyong City where we had, among many others, a BMW i8 and an immaculate vintage BMW 2002 tii,” Reyes announces.
Aside from the annual Bimmerfest, the club also conducts monthly fun drives to different destinations in the Philippines while advocating safe and responsible motoring. The club also organizes touring drives, track days and karting events under safe and controlled environments, and driving clinics to educate members and participants on the physical limits of their vehicles and improve their driving skills while harnessing their vehicles’ technological features.
“Our club’s spirit could be summed up in our unofficial tagline ‘There’s more to the ownership of a BMW than just driving it off the dealership’,” says Ang.