Your Guide to BMW in South Africa

BMW is one of the leading automotive brands in South Africa, with thousands of models found on our local roads. Adored for their emphasis on stately vehicles with a performance focus, BMW has built a loyal following of enthusiasts.

Offering an extensive range of 18 premium vehicles and 17 motorcycles, BMW has a vehicle suitable to almost anyone’s requirement.

Get a Quote

History of the BMW Brand

BMW, or Bayerische Motoren Werke, was established in 1916 in Munich, Bavaria. Although mainly an automotive manufacturer, BMW’s origins can be traced back to the merger of three separate companies: Bayerische Flugzeugwerke, Automobilwerke Eisenach, and Rapp Motorenwerke.

The first item ever produced by BMW was the IIIa aircraft engine, and many incorrectly believe the BMW logo replicates the movement of a propeller. However, it is actually a merger of the Bavarian flag and the Rapp Motorenwerke logo.

BMW ceased production of aircraft engines in 1918 after the signing of the Versailles Armistice Treaty, ending the state of war between Germany and the Allied Powers. BMW continued producing railway and farm equipment. After the treaty terms were lifted, the company began producing motorcycles, namely the R32 in 1923, and eventually produced their first car in 1927, the Dixi 3/15.

1959 proved a difficult time for the Bavarian company as it was nearing bankruptcy. Following various merger proposals, BMW eventually received a much-needed financial injection from Herbert Quandt, director of the Quandt Group (a conglomerate of business people in Germany), which helped BMW refocus their offering. This led to BMW producing their New Class vehicle, bringing them great success and establishing the brand as a leading manufacturer of sports sedans.

Classic BMW, the history of BMW
A family buying a new car

BMW Models and Segments

The best-selling BMW model is the 3 Series, a premium family sedan. However, they also offer their popular 1 Series hatchback and the 2 Series compact sedan. The executive 5 and 7 Series complete their elite sedan range, while their 6 and newly launched 8 Series models offer stylish alternatives to their sedan models.

They also offer premium SUV models with the X1, X3, and stately X5 and X6. Their Z4 model completes the range as their two-seater sports model.

BMW is one of the few companies in South Africa with an all-electric division, and it’s spearheaded by their i3 and i8 models.

Here’s a breakdown of all BMW models and segments:



1 Series


2 Series

Compact sedan

3 Series


4 Series

Sedan coupe

5 Series

Executive sedan

6 Series

Executive sedan coupe

7 Series

Flagship sedan

8 Series

Flagship sedan coupe


Compact SUV


Compact SUV


Compact SUV


Compact coupe SUV




Coupe SUV


Premium SUV




Electric hatchback


Hybrid sports car



Sport Series


Tour Series


Urban Mobility Series

Urban mobility

Heritage Series


Adventure Series


Roadster Series



Read more about these BMW models: 3 Series and iX

Guy signing an insurance policy

Vehicle Insurance

BMW has their own range of vehicle insurance with unique offerings, from comprehensive cover to tyre cover. While it’s great to have everything managed in-house, shopping for insurance and comparing insurance prices is still a great option when you’re in the market for car insurance cover.  

Here is a quick look at each insurance offering by BMW.

BMW Comprehensive Cover

  • Total cover provided by BMW if your vehicle is fitted with an advanced electronic anti-theft system, and replacement in the event of total loss

  • Driver service

  • Accident management services

  • Emergency medical support

  • Repairs conducted by an approved BMW repair centre

  • Cover for clients outside South Africa (within limitations stipulated by BMW upon agreement of insurance)

  • Automatic car hire available in the event of theft or damage


BMW Dynamik Cover

  • Personal accident and all-risk cover worldwide

  • Up to R20 000 in personal liability cover

  • Accidental damage included in buildings cover

  • Cover for craft such as ski-boats, jet-skis, yachts, and windsurfers

  • Identity theft cover

  • Upgrading of security systems following a break-in

  • Emergency medical support

  • Roadside assistance

  • Accident management services

  • Driver service

  • No excess for drivers over the age of 55


BMW Credit Protection

There are three options that provide coverage in the event of death, retrenchment, disability, critical illness, or hospitalisation.

BMW Top Cover

In the event of a theft or write-off of your vehicle, BMW will settle the difference between your comprehensive insurance payout and the amount owing on your finance agreement.

BMW Care and Cosmetic Repair Cover

An innovative cover by BMW to repair small scratches, dents, chips, and abrasions. The cover is available for both the interior and exterior of your BMW.

BMW Tyre Cover

  • Tyre fitment fee covers up to R500 when fitted by an approved dealership

  • Available on regular and run-flat tyres

  • Used tread not calculated during claim stage (must be roadworthy and within SA legal limit)

  • No excess payable at claims stage

  • All tyres covered in the event of an accident

  • Unlimited claims (run-flats limited to R45 000 per annum)

BMW Extended Warranty Cover

  • 24-month warranty extension

  • No waiting period

  • 42 major components included

  • Cover transferable with vehicle

  • Emergency fuel delivery

  • Battery failure

Car insurance quotes
Travelling with your BMW

BMW Car Rental

BMW models are found on the higher end of the price range. This means they can be quite expensive to have as rental cars. However, considering BMW has won the SA Car of the Year Award numerous times, it could well be worth the cost, and many car rental services do offer BMW models for hire.

Search car hire

The Popular BMW 3 Series

The 3 Series premium sedan offers drivers an array of options, from model shape to engine size, and all the included optional extras. The highly anticipated 3 Series (2019) is already stamping its authority, according to BMW.

‘’Barely on the road and the all-new BMW 3 Series Sedan is already leaving everything behind it, including conventions and expectations,’’ says BMW South Africa.

One of the most popular 3 Series models is the 320d, which offers a combined fuel consumption of 4.0 litres/100 km and produces 106 g/km of CO2 emissions.

Priced from R591 100, the BMW 3 Series (2018) 320d is situated firmly in a highly competitive segment, with the 2019 version ready to take over and carry on the torch.

White BMW 3 series

Prices quoted are correct at the time of publishing this article. The information in this article is provided for informational purposes only and should not be construed as financial, legal or medical advice