BMW remake the Monza circuit in the Sahara Desert as a playground for X5
Marketing gimmicks are almost always directly proportional to sale rates. With the competition level rising astronomically, it is important to put your product into the potential buyers' line of sight.
BMW Italy have managed to do just that. There’s hardly a better way to promote their off-road SUV than to actually show it running around in Monza, especially one recreated with sand. The German automobile manufacturers have reproduced a 1:1 scale of the iconic Monza circuit in the Sahara desert to showcase the capabilities of the new BMW X5.
The circuit in the desert of Morocco has been made with the long straights and the fast corners of Monza as an undertaking comprising of 50 people. Utilizing four days first to survey the area with the help of architects, engineers and surveyors, they soon began working on the sands of Sahara to make it look exactly like the track in Italy.
The entire project took two weeks. Within a span of nine days, a handful of bulldozers, trucks, graders and compactors were used to prepare the soil and get rid of the surplus sand, or add the defining touches to the track.
The X5's Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) model was then given free rein to run on the new Monza circuit in Morocco just to showcase the extent of its capabilities, challenging the sand and rock texture of the area. The result was spectacular, seeing the X5 going head to head against some of the most famous curves in the world, like the Ascari and Parabolica.
The effort it took to remake the Italian track in Merzounga surely caught a lot of eyeballs and it did cement the image of the new X5 as a proper off-roading vehicle.