The BMW Company was created on March 7th 1916, by the merger of the Bayerische Flugzeugwerke and Otto-Werke, two mechanics companies of Munich. Originally, the brand made aircraft engines, as it is still highlighted today by its emblem. At the end of the Second World War and further to the Treaty of Versailles in 1919, the firm, as well as all the German companies, was forced to stop all production in relation to the military and aeronautical sectors. BMW started then, from 1920, the design of a flat bi-cylinder engine cooled by air and with dial transmission, placed on a motorbike. The R32 was born! In 1924, BMW thought of going into the automobile production and seized the opportunity by redeeming the brand Dixi, producer of the model Austin Seven, which will wear the acronym BMW from January 1929. Three years later, BMW stopped the production of Austin vehicles and decided to develop its own models. It is therefore in 1932 that the 3/20 was commercialized (4-cylinder, 20hc). From 1933, a range equipped with 6-cylinder engines arrived, with the models 303, 309 and 315, which contributed to the success of BMW. The factories were requisitioned for the military production during the Second World War, the production was in slow-motion. The post-war years were difficult for the Bavarian make, whose factories suffered the bombings, or were requisitioned and pillaged. It was only in 1948 that BMW revived the production of two-wheeled, under the control of the allies, which did not allow the car production yet. The 501 was finally presented at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1951, luxurious sedan which had difficulties to meet a clientele. In 1955, BMW tried to make good its looses by producing a popular small car, the Isetta, which was also a failure, due to the uncontrolled production costs. In 1959, while BMW was under the threat of a takeover from Mercedes-Benz, the company found its salvation with a group of shareholders led by Herbert Quandt. The latter invested millions of marks in order to get back on track a production program for a midsize sedan. This project called 'Neue Klasse' (New Class) came true in 1962 with the arrival of the '1500', first vehicle of a complete range. Conveying a dynamic image, the sedan BMW, both modern and efficient, met rapidly a great success. This success never left BMW which, 50 years later, is one of the biggest car manufacturers in the world!