Our friends at the Hilton Head Island Concours d’Elegance are putting on a tour d’force of events sure to please every BMW enthusiast this fall! For the 2011 Hilton Head Island Concours d’Elegance and Motoring Festival, BMW will be the honored marque featuring both historic BMW race cars and classic Bavarian in the form of both cars and motorcycles from the last 80+ years.

The Motoring Festival kicks off  October 28th at the Savannah Speed Classic in Savannah, Georgia located within the Westin Savannah Harbor Golf Resort on Hutchinson Island, opposite historic the River Street in downtown Savannah. Aside from an impressive array of classic sports cars, a contingent of BMW race cars will be on-hand to compete with the likes of numerous other classic road racers – from Porsches to Ferraris to classic American muscle. The classics will battle it out on the beautiful Savannah Harbor Racing Circuit – a 1.97 mile road course snaking around the Westin’s property on Hutchinson Island. If watching old school European iron streak around the Savannah circuit wasn’t enough, the BMW Performance Center will have its own drivers on-hand providing hot laps in both road cars as well as race cars. Laps are available for purchase during the weekend.

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As the Motoring Festival progresses throughout the week, events move from historic Savannah to just across the border on luxurious Hilton Head Island, South Carolina for the 10th annual Hilton Head Island Concours d’Elegance starting November 5th. As noted, BMW will also be the featured marque of the event with several BMW-specific categories on display: BMW Pre-WWII, BMW Post-WWII, BMW race cars and BMW motorcycles. BMW of North America will have on-hand a 2002tii, 507 Roadster and M1 from its own collection as well as a number of modern BMW’s MINI’s and Rolls Royces to display their brand portfolio.

The Honorary Chairman of the Concours d’Elegance will be none other than SPEED’s own Dennis Gage who will present awards at both the Car Club Jamboree and Concours throughout the weekend. Additionally, Mr. Gage will be the guest speaker at a cocktail hour open to the public on November 5th at the Westin Hilton Head Island Resort and Spa. Gage himself is an avid BMW enthusiast though on the Motorrad side as he owns a handful of vintage BMW bikes.

Dennis Gage at 2007 HHI Motoring Festival 655x438

Additionally, famed BMW driver Boris Said has been named Honorary Grand Marshal of the Savannah Speed Classic, offering fans autographs, a Q&A session and most important, laps around the road course! Boris is intrinsically linked to BMW through his heroics at the wheel of BMW M3’s in IMSA in the early 1990’s and winning at the 24 Hours of Daytona and 12 Hours of Sebring in the late 1990’s. Additionally, Said handled the monstrous E46 M3 GTR for the PTG team in the early 2000’s and then again at the 2005 24 Hours of Nurburgring. Boris is certainly a driver who knows a thing or two about how to get the best out of a BMW.

For those interested in purchasing tickets in advance – we recommend heading to the Concours’ homepage located here to reserve your tickets now. Additionally, head over to the Hilton Head Island Concours Facebook fanpage for your own chance to win the Ultimate BMW Driving Experience!

BMWBlog staff will be in attendance both weekends to cover the Savannah Speed Classic and the Hilton Head Island Concours d’Elegance. Feel free to reach out to us at Andrew(at)BMWBlog.com to stop by and say hello! Watch this space for more exclusive content from both of these incredible events!

Press Release

BMW Selected as the Honored Marque for the 2011 Hilton Head Island Motoring Festival & Concours d’Elegance

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, SC (June 7, 2011) – BMW has been selected as the featured Honored Marque for the Hilton Head Island Motoring Festival & Concours d’Elegance which is celebrating its 10th year this fall,October 28 – November 6, 2011.

As the chosen feature, BMW will be included in all four of the Motoring Festival’s signature events.
At the Savannah Speed Classic, October 28 – 30 at the Grand Prize of America Track at the Westin Savannah Harbor Resort, BMW will participate in the event’s Inaugural Car Club Challenge. Up to 60 spaces are available for BMW Car Club of America racers to compete against the likes of Porsche and Ferrari. Participants must meet eligibility requirements as determined by the MotoringFestival’s race partner, Historic Sportscar Racing (HSR), Ltd. For more details on participating in the Challenge, go to http://www.hhiconcours.com/events/speed-classic.html. Additionally, the BMW Performance Center will feature hot laps in street cars as well as race cars. Hot laps are available for purchase on-site at the event.

Featuring German marques this year, the Car Club Jamboree will have 15 of the finest BMW representatives from the BMW Car Club of America on display at the Coastal Discovery Museum at Honey Horn on Hilton Head Island, Saturday, November 5.

Celebrating the design and engineering of BMW, the Concours d’Elegance at the Coastal Discovery Museum at Honey Horn on Hilton Head Island, Sunday, November 6 will feature 4 distinct classes:BMW Pre WWII; BMW Post WWII; BMW Race Cars and BMW Motorcycles. A representative group of vintage and race BMWs are expected to participate. Acceptances will be determined in July.

Running concurrently with the Car Club Jamboree and the Concours d’Elegance, the Motoring Midway at the Coastal Discovery Museum at Honey Horn on Hilton Head Island, Saturday and Sunday, November 5 & 6 will feature several unique and exciting BMW displays including:

BMW Art Bike: The BMW K 1100 RS motorcycle, painted by Native American artist Lynn F. Burnette, Sr. with symbols of the Sioux culture and the geometric designs of the Plains Indians., recounts the stories of the Sioux and their struggle for freedom that the artist learned as a young child growing up on the Rosebud (Lakota) Sioux Reservation near White River, SD. Additionally, the artist, Lynn Burnette, will be in attendance.

BMW R7: After over 70 years languishing in a box the BMW R7 has been restored to its former glory. Although the motorcycle, manufactured in 1934, was only ever a prototype and never went into production it is one of the most important, innovative and visually stunning motorcycles ever produced. The work of motorcycle engineer Alfred Böning, the R7 was produced to showcase both the design and engineering capabilities of BMW with the aim of turning it into a production model. It was a radical departure from accepted motorcycle design of the period, having enclosed bodywork, a pressed steel bridge frame and for the first time, telescopic front forks.

Nettesheim Museum: Peter Nettesheim, museum founder, is scheduled to display a selection from his personal collection of vintage BMW motorcycles and memorabilia. The exhibit will feature his 1923 Model BMW R32, BMW’s first motorcycle. This particular bike, the oldest known BMW vehicle in existence, will head a lineup of milestone BMW motorcycles.

Life in the Fast Lane: As part of this year’s Life exhibit, a new tradition at the Hilton Head Island Motoring Festival, a special display of manufacturer based tuned specialtyvehicles, including BMW representatives such as a 323 Schnitzer Turbo.

The BMW Group, a founding sponsor of the Festival, will also participate and feature all of the BMW Group brands, including BMW, MINI, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars as well as BMW Motorrad. As part of their involvement, the BMW Group will exhibit ‘BMW Legacy Cars’ at the event’s front entrance on Hilton Head Island with a combination of museum and personally owned vehicles to include a BMW 507, BMW M1 and BMW 2002 tii. Other BMW Group activities will include new vehicle displays, customer ride and drive opportunities and a celebration of BMW’s rich motorsports history with a display of vintage race vehicles.

“We’re pleased to continue our relationship with the Hilton Head Island Motoring Festival & Concours d’Elegance,” noted Jim O’Donnell, President of BMW of North America, LLC. “South Carolina has been our home for 16 years. Not only do we make vehicles there for worldwide distribution like the all-new BMWX3 Sports Activity Vehicle, at the BMW Performance Center you can sharpen your driving skills and take delivery of your new BMW.”

More information on the 10th Annual Hilton Head Island Motoring Festival & Concours d’Elegance is available online at www.hhiconcours.com.