Thanks for competition: How BMW was trolled by Merc on 100th birthday

  • Gulshankumar Wankar, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Mar 09, 2016 16:27 IST
BMW is celebrating its 100th birthday with the Vision Next100. But Mercedes had their own plans (AFP)

Bored with politicians taking potshots at each other in India? Come to Germany to witness how Mercedes-Benz wished its rival BMW on its 100th birthday celebrations.

The automobile giants have for long put up billboards along the autobahns (that’s German for highways) and depended upon commercials on TV to downplay each other. And social media is the latest weapon in their war.

On Monday, Mercedes congratulated Bayerische Moteren Werke (BMW) for its 100 years in the automobile industry on Instagram through a video.

The first five seconds of the video which show the signature BMW grille makes us go “awww…” for the love in Germany, in the next five seconds it becomes clear how “The Three Pointer” outshines “the double kidney”.

“Thanks for 100 years of competition. The previous 30 years were a bit boring,” the blurb in the video read.

Because the Stuttgart-based Mercedes-Benz was founded in 1886, a good 30 years before Munich-based BMW started its business.

Mercedes-Benz also congratulated BMW with a front page ad on Monday.


Another German super-performance car maker Porsche also spent a huge sum to buy the BMW a birthday cake on the front page.

“The future presents us with great challenges. We face them with sheer driving pleasure. Porsche bows to 100 years of moving automobile history and wholeheartedly congratulates BMW on this jubilee,” the ad read.


Wait there’s more.

Mercedes has also offered BMW staff free admission to the Mercedes-Benz Museum “to discover the complete history of the automobile” from March 8 to 13. The museum in Stuttgart, which opened in May 2006, “takes visitors throughout the history of the automobile from its earliest beginnings…”

“Those arriving in a BMW will be allowed to park free of charging in a prominent position directly outside the entrance on the hill. The restaurant will additionally serve up a special Swabian speciality for the first 50 BMW employees at the end of their tour of 130 years of automotive history,” the Stuttgart-based company said in a statement.

The statement specified that the Swabian speciality will be related to the double-kidney shape of the signature BMW radiator grille, further giving the Bavarian giant a burn from their own bonnet after a rough drive.


The invitation also boasts the fact that Carl Benz and Gottlieb Daimler had invented the automobile independently of one another in 1886. Benz & Cie and Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft (DMG) then came together in 1896 to form a new brand, Mercedes-Benz.

While the carmakers have their own plans to tackle the future, some had doubts about the past of BMW.

Author Jim Carey questioned how BMW could celebrate the centenary of auto-manufacturing if it never made a car until 1928.

“BMW only got into the car business in 1928 by taking over a company already building them,” Carey wrote.

So after almost a century of fierce racing across technologies and car segments, we’re in 2016 and BMW is busy contemplating the future with its Vision Next100, and the 130-year-old Mercedes-Benz is celebrating a decade of the Stuttgart museum by holding various events throughout the year.

The third German giant, Volkswagen, had some breathing issues due to “pollution” and was not available for comment.

Funny, isn’t it?

BMW should then throw us a big party in 2028 too.

The author tweets as @GulshanMWankar.

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