A Visit to the Zentrum at the BMW Factory in Spartanburg, SC

Another stop on the first day of my South Carolina/North Carolina road trip was the Zentrum at the BMW factory in Spartanburg, SC. Located just off of I-85 at Exit 60, the Zentrum is a combination museum and showroom that shows off both BMW’s history and their current products. Prominently displayed near the center of the C-shaped museum is an M3 GT2 car raced in the American Le Mans Series from 2009 to 2012; as a sports car racing fan, I was thrilled to see it. Having it so prominently placed shows how seriously BMW takes their motorsport. Among the historic cars in the Zentrum is the first car to roll off of Spartanburg’s production line, a 318 signed by over 700 of the factory’s employees. They also have a first generation 1986 M3 road car on display. Other historic BMW cars are a 1934 BMW 319 and a 1930 Ihle DIXI, the car that debuted BMW’s signature grille. Showcasing their new automobile technology is a beautiful black i8 electric sports car. Another classic BMW, an iconic Isetta takes center stage in the Zentrum’s cafe. If you find yourself in or near Spartanburg or Greenville, the Zentrum is definitely a place to stop in and visit.

Some of the inside photos in this post were taken with my Google Pixel 3 phone in “Night Sight” mode. Night Sight is designed for taking photos in dark conditions and I found it to be great for taking photos inside of museums. Some museums are dark inside and others discourage the use of flash photography for preservation reasons, so the Night Sight mode enabled me to take better photos in the museums without using a flash. If you’ve got a Google phone and haven’t tried out Night Sight yet, I highly recommend it for any low light environment.

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