1 Approaching the BMW Visitor Center
2 Here I am with Max Metcalf, Section Manager for BMW Corporate Communications, who kindly picked us up from our hotel and brought us here.
3 Inside the Zentrum, the BMW museum, there are many retro models on display.
4 This red 1955 Isetta bubble car reminded me of driving through Europe on my honeymoon many years ago. You enter through the front.
5 The Isetta was a simple but reliable car that supported the economic recovery in postwar Europe. This model has a back seat.
6 Another Isetta bubble car with a tiny sleeping trailer
7 A beautiful example of a sleek roadster
8 There is also a display of BMW motorcycles old and new.
9 Checking out the interior of the X3 before ordering online
10 My film crew was all set up to go.
11 Joe Wierda - Product Manager - explaining how to order my car online - how fast and easy!
12 After placing my order, we headed to the body shop to see it taking shape.
13 The body shop is huge and filled with all sorts of robotic equipment.
14 Massive robotic arms swing to and fro.
15 There are many impressive looking caged stations.
16 Safety goggles are a must, as there are many flying sparks all around.
17 Joe and Chad Johnson, Production Manager, explained that 500 individual parts are welded together robotically and that there are more than 6000 weld points.
18 Not every job can be done by robots.
19 Todd Shwartzman, from our broadcast sales department, was having a blast!
20 The unfinished cars travel high up on a conveyor getting them from one station to another.
21 We followed my car through the plant.
22 Here it is coming through another station - there are many inspection points.
23 My car eventually headed for the painting station and here is some of the paint crew.
24 Suited up and headed for the paint shop - We passed through this chamber, where high pressure air blew onto our suits, cleaning them of any particles that could damage a fresh coat of paint.
25 Tanya, the Paint Manager, explained to me that every car is sprayed with a total of five coats of paint.
26 My X3 all painted - It will now head into an oven, where it will be cured for 30-45 minutes.
27 Chris Meagher, the DP for this shoot was wondering when his X3 would pass through!
28 Here we are outside of the paint shop - Eliad, my Social Media Director, came with us to document for my blog.
29 Next, we visited the area where the 'marriage' occurs between the car's power train and its body.
30 An impressive new and powerful power train
31 An assembly line of powertrains
32 My X3 about to marry its power train
33 To join, twenty-one fasteners connect together in less then a minute!
34 After the marriage, my car is carried to the next station.
35 Finally, we headed to the BMW Performance Driving School.
36 A great gift shop for the BMW fan
37 Fresh off the assembly line, my car was ready to take for its first spin! Joe handed me the keys.
38 I drove towards the track with my instructor, Matt Mullens.
39 I tested out the brakes.
40 Then, I punched the accelerator for some real driving excitement!
41 Chris was with his camera in the backseat.
42 Next, we headed for the course for a spin in the BMW M5. Matt told us that he had actually been a professional driver on the Nascar circuit. This was going to be interesting!
43 And we're off!! With 0 to 60mph in 4.8 seconds, this was going to be quite a ride! Going 90mph around turns, this car handled beautifully!
44 You might notice that this photo is a little blurry. That's because it was taken by Eliad, who was sitting in the back seat. He looked a little green after that thrilling ride!