• BMW jumps on the Facebook craze to promote the X1

In today’s day and age, the Internet has become the best place to advertise your products. It’s free, it’s got tremendous traffic, and communication travels so fast you can reach somebody from halfway across the world in a matter of seconds.

One car manufacturer that has taken advantage of the many booms the internet provides is BMW, and it has done so by invading social networking sites. That’s right. If you think Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and YouTube are just means of wasting time on-line; guess again.

BMW will bring the X1 SUV to the Frankfurt Motor Show, but for now we can only admire images of the small SUV. Looking identical to the X1 Concept, the production version will go on sale in Europe by the end of the year followed by sales in the North American market to begin in early 2011.

Placed below the X3 in the lineup, the BMW X1 will be powered by a wide range of engines, including a 2.0 Liter four cylinder making 143 HP or 170 HP and a 3.0 Liter straight-six pumping out 265 HP. The diesel line-up will include a 2.0 Liter 4 cylinder engine producing either 143 HP, 177 HP or 204 HP.

Continued after the jump with official images.

The German-manufacturer has used theses modes of communication to hype up a car that hasn’t even been released yet: the BMW X1. And while the car won’t be released in the US until 2011, the amount of traffic its Facebook page has generated has been nothing short of astounding.

If anybody wants to look at the said page, you’ll find so much more than just the expected shameless plugs. BMW recently posted photos of the X1 on the page and it has spawned tons of positive reactions from visitors with even one guest already making suggestions on the possible color schemes for the car – ‘I want one dressed in white,’ the guest commented. The site has already garnered a strong fan base – 1,744 and counting – despite having been created only a few months ago and the car not expected to be rolled out until 18 months from

BMW’s decision to plug the car at a social networking site like Facebook is in-line with the company’s goal of appealing towards the younger generations – a generation that is not really associated with BMW. By promoting the X1 to a whole new demographic, BMW hopes that it could capture the market before any of its competitors do. It’s a sound strategy, to say the least.

It also helps that advertising on sites like Facebook doesn’t cost BMW two arms and a leg on their marketing budget. According to Tony Douglas, innovations manager at BMW’s Munich marketing department, “You don’t buy it; you have to earn it. Content and timing has to be good, and you use a bit more brainpower. It is not the blind media spend."

As we’ve said, the X1 won’t be available in Europe until later this year and won’t be making its debut on US soil until 2011. Nonetheless, the added exposure the X1 has generated from these sites just might make the wait worth it.

Source: Edmunds

Kirby Garlitos
Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert - kirby@topspeed.com
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read full bio
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