Logo



Olympic Miniature MINIs and Olympic Advertising

These days the Olympics mean not only international competition, but seeing brands clamor to associate themselves with the games. There are dozens of brands, big and small, who pay significant amounts of money to become the “official sponsor” or “official partner” of the Olympics in one avenue or another. And yet, did you know that advertising is strictly prohibited inside the games themselves?

So how exactly did BMW get a tiny version of the MINI Cooper inside the stadium? Businessweek.com has some of the answers. Turns out it was one part precedent, one part clever omission. Small remote controlled vehicles carried track and field equipment in the 2008 Beijing games, but those cars were more abstract in shape. The miniature MINIs hauling gear in the London Olympics are near exact 1/4 scale replicas of the MINI Hardtop, but bear no logos or branding graphics anywhere on the car. MINI has cleverly leveraged the recognizable shape of the MINI and its well-known British heritage to keep this car in the realm of propriety.


“It’s got no branding on it, it’s got no Mini badge on it,” BMW spokesman Graham Biggs said of the little cars. “But people like to recognize things and we’ve had a fantastic reaction from people who see them in the stadium. The whole idea of Mini is it’s a fun brand, the cars are cute and they have a smiley face.”

Were the Olympics being held pretty much anywhere else in the world, I doubt MINI could have gotten away with this, Olympic partner or no. The proverbial stars aligned to give MINI an opportunity to do something fun, clever and highly recognizable. The response seems to be overwhelmingly positive.

Businessweek.com also had some interesting details on the little cars themselves. They were built internally by BMW, and cost approximately $14,000 each. So for those of you hoping to get your hands on one of these little cars for yourselves, you could actually have a (used) full-size MINI for less money.

[Source: Business Week]

Written By: Nathaniel Salzman

  • piper

    It is indeed a clever, albeit surreptitious, strategy that MINI managed to pull off to achieve promotional exposure. The cars appear to be very well detailed and are undoubtedly drawing a lot of attention and press in addition to MF. I’d consider plunking down $1k for one considering their 1/4 scale, functional headlights, and who knows what else. $14k is another story in terms of consumer marketing. Of course that is not the reason behind their creation. The the end justifies the means in BMW’s case. After all, a half-dozen fleet of R/C MINIs represents an “advertising” bargain … and a “mega-bargain” considering reach to the world-wide Olympics audience. It still want one!

  • bluzeke

    Inadvertently or not, NBC commentators have done a smooth job of mentioning both BMW and MINI anytime an explanation is made concerning the function of those cute little cars we see running around the track infield. Gotta be driving the folks at MINI nuts – NOT! ;-)


Sort by MINI model

MotoringFile on Instagram








MINI Model Cheat Sheet

1st Gen MINI
R50: One & MC Hatch
R52: All 1st Gen MINI Convt.
R53: MCS Hatch
2nd Gen MINI
R55: Clubman
R56: Hatch
R57: Convertible
R58: Coupe
R59: Roadster
R60: MINI Crossover
R61: MINI Crossover Coupe
3rd Gen MINI
F54: Clubman
F55: Five Door Hatch
F56: Hatch
F57: Convertible
F60: MINI Crossover
F58: Traveller

Advertise with MotoringFile

If you or your company are interested in advertising on the most influential MINI website in the world, please visit our Advertising section. If you have further questions about becoming a sponsor or would like to see our rate sheet please feel free to contact us directly.
mini mini
Translate MotoringFile with Google: 
 

BF

MotoringFile Buyers Guides

R50 ('02-'06 MC) Buyers Guide
R53 ('02-'06 MCS) Buyers Guide

BF

SF



MotoringFile Reviews

Reviews:
'12 JCW Coupe
'11 Fiat 500 Sport
'11 Tesla Roaster 2.5 '11 Countryman Comparo
'11 Cooper S Hatch
'11 Countryman MCS (FWD)
'11 Countryman MC (auto)
'10 Mayfair MCS (auto)
'11 Countryman MCS (ALL4)
'10 MINI E
'10 Tesla Roadster Sport
'09 Cooper S Convertible
'09 JCW Hatch
'09 JCW Clubman
JCW Stage I vs JCW Stage II
'08 Clubman S (Auto)
1st Drive: '08 MINI Clubman
'08 Smart Fourtwo
Comparison: '08 BMW 135i
'06 R53 MCS vs '07 R56 MCS
'07 R56 JCW (Stage 1)
'07 MINI Cooper S Long Term
'07 BMW Z4 M Coupe
'07 MINI Cooper & Cooper S
Audio: '07 MC/MCS at the Track
'06 JCW GP Long term
Reader Review: JCW GP
'06 JCW Cooper S Long Term
Comparison: '06 Lotus Elise
Comparison: '06 Mazda MX5
Comparison: '06 UK Focus ST
Comparison: '06 Civic Si
Comparison: '04 TVR T350
Comparison: '06 Nissan 350z
Comparison: '06 VW GTI w/DSG
Podcast: Cooper S Auto
Podcast: BMW 325i
Podcast: JCW MC Soundkit
'04 JCW MINI Cooper Tuning Kit
'05 MCS: One Month Review
'05 MCS Auto
'05 JCW S 1st Drive
'05 MINI Cooper
'05 MCS Conv. Long Term
'05 MINI Cooper S
'05 MCS Cabrio 1st Drive
'04 JCW MCS First Drive
'04 MC w/JCW Tuning Kit
BMW M3 SMG Vs. MCS
'04 MINI Cooper CVT
'02 MCS 3 year Review
Autocrossing the MINI Range


cafepress