BMW M hits the track with its electric offering

The campaign celebrates the history of the performance division while showing it's along for the ride to the automaker's future.

BMW is commemorating the 50th anniversary of its M sub-brand with a new campaign that both honours its storied history as well as its plans for the future.

The “We are M” campaign is based around a video that highlights BMW M’s origin and success in motor sports while highlighting its future in electric vehicles. There will also be OOH displays topped off by a “forced perspective” billboard at Young and Dundas Square that features BMW M4 CSL and the BMW i4 M50 appearing as if they are driving off the screen.

Launched in 1972, BMW M is the automaker’s motor sports and performance division, offering versions of most of its nameplates with enhanced engines, suspensions, interior trims, aerodynamics and exterior modifications. The modified vehicles are also available to the general public, and Canada ranks as one of its top markets in terms of share of sales and volume.

While marking the 50th anniversary is a key aspect of the campaign, the goal is to promote that the division will be part electric vehicle-focused future the rest of BMW is focusing on, in unique and creative ways.

“With the continued pivot and shift towards electric mobility, we wanted to articulate to our fans and to the general public that we're coming out with the M4 CSL, which is a very high performance traditional combustion car, but the i4 M50 being a fully electric power plant and car was the main idea here,” says Andrew Scott, director of brand management for BMW M.

There will also be a second element of the campaign designed to recognize Canada’s status as one of the largest BMW M markets with “50 Years/50 Drivers,” a series of videos that will be shared on its social media platforms that will showcase the stories of 50 drivers from across the country.

The guiding insight for the campaign is the idea the BMW M isn’t about looking backwards but moving forward, says Scott. Its goal, with this campaign and beyond, is to propel the technology of the automotive industry forward and continue to innovate with its designs and vehicles.

The challenge for the creative team, led by Performance Art, was to celebrate BMW M’s history while also pointing to its future which is in powertrain, says Scott.

The campaign launched on June 20 and will continue until Aug. 22 with a video that will run on its owned social media platforms including Instagram and Youtube.

Media Experts worked with Astral Television Networks and Bell Media for on air radio integration while Richmond Day combined the assets into a story for social media.