We’ve seen so many spy shots of upcoming BMWs over the years that we feel like black and white camouflage should be an official color for the brand. However, camouflaging a test mule is a more complicated process than just giving it with a swirly black and white wrap. If BMW—or any brand, for that matter—only did that, we’d be able to figure out the car’s design in a minute. Instead, BMW goes through a surprisingly in-depth process to hide its fresh designs and, in this new video, we show you how.
In this new video, Horatiu was able to get up close and personal with a BMW 5 Series test mule that was covered in camouflage. However, it isn’t just camouflage. There are actually fake body panels and sheets of plastic, both of which are also covered in the same swirly camo, that are screwed to actual car’s body work.
Those panels do two things. One is that they simply cover and hide certain designs. The other is that they can actually throw off the look of the design, intentionally making the design look drastically different than it is. In this video, you can see that there’s a piece of plastic quite literally screwed into the front end, which both hides some of the headlight and makes the headlight seem larger than it is. So when it comes time to finally see the car, it should be considerably different than what the test mule seemingly shows. Or at least that’s the idea.
BMW did the same thing with the front kidney grille and the hood of this 5 Series test mule. The hood features long strips of plastic that are just screwed into the real hood, to hide its creases and lines. There are also plastic pieces screwed onto the front end to obscure the look of the grille, also making it look larger than it really is. Thankfully, the 5 Series will have a pretty normal looking kidney grille, unlike some of its more luxurious siblings.
Obviously, we weren’t allowed to look too closely into the 5er’s design, to make our pesky detective work didn’t reveal anything too soon. However, we were allowed to get close enough to show how BMW camouflages its cars and why. As heavily camouflaged as BMW’s test mules are, though, we’re still going to keep dissecting every spy photo we see, to figure out their designs before they’re launched.