BMW breaks ground for its first Asia driving center

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BMW breaks ground for its first Asia driving center

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BMW Korea President Kim Hyo-joon, left, talks about the BMW Group’s Driving Center on Yeongjong Island in Incheon with Hendrik von Kuenheim, chief of BMW’s Asia,?Pacific?and South Africa markets, center, and Carsten Roger, BMW Group Driving Center project manager, yesterday. Provided by the company

BMW Korea, the nation’s top seller of imported cars, held a groundbreaking ceremony for a driving center yesterday on Yeongjong Island in Incheon.

BMW has driving centers in the United States and Germany, and this will be its first in Asia.

The driving center will be built on 240,000 square meters of land (59.3 acres) at a cost of 70 billion won ($62 million). It will have a 2.6 kilometer (1.6-mile) track made up of six driving courses where visitors will be able to test drive BMW or Mini models.

Inside the center, BMW Korea will set up cultural and educational spaces showing environmentally friendly vehicles and technologies. It will also have restaurants, cafes and other galleries.

BMW Korea said its training academy will move to Yeongjong Island after the center is completed. Since the location is close to Incheon International Airport, BMW also said it will offer inspection and repair services for airline passengers. The company added that the 12,000-square-meter recreational park will be open to everyone.

“BMW Group Driving Center will have test operations next spring, and we expect more than 200,000 visitors a year,” said BMW Korea President and CEO Kim Hyo-joon. “The center will contribute to the nation’s effort to foster an automobile culture.”


By Joo Kyung-don [kjoo@joongang.co.kr]

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