Driven: Inside BMW, the Most Admired Car Company in the World

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Overview

BMW is perhaps the most admired carmaker in the world -- renowned for a level of luxury and performance that inspires near-fanatical loyalty in its customers. While other carmakers struggle with falling sales even with hefty rebates, BMW can't seem to make cars fast enough. Combining world-class engineering, intelligent management, and a unique corporate culture, BMW produces consistently superior cars that are the most benchmarked vehicles in the industry. In Driven, David Kiley presents an inside look at the ...
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Overview

BMW is perhaps the most admired carmaker in the world -- renowned for a level of luxury and performance that inspires near-fanatical loyalty in its customers. While other carmakers struggle with falling sales even with hefty rebates, BMW can't seem to make cars fast enough. Combining world-class engineering, intelligent management, and a unique corporate culture, BMW produces consistently superior cars that are the most benchmarked vehicles in the industry. In Driven, David Kiley presents an inside look at the fabled automaker, revealing the business philosophy and practices that make BMW more than just another carmaker, and the unsurpassed quality that makes a "Bimmer" more than just a car. With uncommon access to BMW executives and records, Kiley explains how the company emerged from the wreckage of World War II to become the most respected car producer and one of the most profitable automakers in the world. Kiley examines the business practices that put BMW on top, and the marketing efforts that keep it there. BMW's brand strength and knack for developing the most sought-after cars in the world inspire jealousy and admiration among marketers everywhere. Its well-crafted brand message -- The Ultimate Driving Machine -- is widely admired for its clarity and consistency, just as BMW's cars are admired for their authenticity and performance.

More than just a company, BMW is an iconic symbol of the successful rebirth of German industry. For the first time in the U.S. media, Kiley introduces readers to the family behind BMW's success -- the mysterious and secretive Quandts. Behind the walls of the family compound in Bad Homburg lives Johanna Quandt, one of Europe's wealthiest and most reclusive women, and her equally wealthy adult children, Stefan and Susanne, who successfully engineered a management coup in 1999. Driven not only tells the story of BMW, but also the story of one of the most powerful families in Europe. Excepting the occasional speed bump, BMW has seen more than four decades of steady growth and success. Kiley explores the company's ups and downs from top to bottom, including the disastrous acquisition and eventual divestiture of the British Rover Group and the controversial hiring of head designer Chris Bangle. For business leaders who want to emulate the company's excellence, Driven digs deep to reveal the practices that make BMW the king of the road.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780471269205
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 4/2/2004
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 328
  • Sales rank: 413,038
  • Product dimensions: 9.21 (w) x 6.14 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction 1
1 The Ultimate Cars 7
2 The Ultimate History 47
3 The Ultimate Family 81
4 The Ultimate Brand 107
5 The Ultimate Stylists 151
6 The Ultimate Blunder 195
7 The Ultimate Brand Expansion 231
8 The Ultimate Hydrogen Future 273
Epilogue: The Ultimate Outlook 293
Notes 297
Index 303
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 24, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Ultimate Boring Book

    Some of the readers may be disappointed with this book: it is not about the story of building the ultimate driving machine, but the history of Bayerische Motoren Werke. This book is for the readers who are interested in learning about the German automobile industry and trade.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 3, 2004

    Packed with Knowledge!

    Anyone who has ever driven a BMW wonders why the car feels so uncannily nimble and supple. Automotive journalist David Kiley answers that question with an intriguing book that strikes just the right balance between gearhead details, behind-the-scenes corporate maneuvering and compelling story telling. Along the way, Kiley offers insight into BMW's mostly successful efforts to build its brand. While Kiley sings BMW's praises, and presents a convincing case that BMW (Bayerische Motoren Werke AG) produces the world's best cars, he doesn't shy away from the details of the owning family's ups and downs, the company's disastrous Rover deal or the public's tepid response to its latest redesigns. We recommend this fascinating book to auto enthusiasts and to managers in any industry who aim to build a brand while staying true to their core values.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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