Despite the fact that the following press release only talks about the BMW brand, it’s a very relevant read for MINI owners as well. As the countless testing photos we’ve seen over the years indicate, BMW thoroughly tests every variation of the MINI (and many JCW accessories like the rear wing and suspension) at the famed Nurburgring.

After a three year renovation and expansion project, BMW has a new home at the famous Nürburgring Nordschleife race circuit – also respectfully known as the “Green Hell” to many of the race drivers who have competed on it. BMW has been using the Nordschleife circuit for roughly 40 years as an integral part of the product development and testing processes for the next iterations of BMW automobiles. The expanded, 12,440 square foot, high-tech workshop facility has been configured for expanded test and development work to be done at the Nürburgring for years to come.

Mention the name Nürburgring Nordschleife to any motorsport enthusiast or driving simulation playing teenager and you will get an immediate reaction ranging from “fantastic” to “diabolical”. This legendary former Formula One race circuit, built over a two year period from 1925 until 1927, strings together a total of 73 corners (33 lefts and 40 rights to be exact) and 300 meters (975ft) of elevation change into a 20.8 kilometer (12.9 Miles) ribbon of ever changing road surface that is – without doubt – the most challenging race circuit ever conceived.

This is exactly why testing at the Nordschleife has been a standard tool for development of each new version of “The Ultimate Driving Machine” for the past forty years….and why it has been a permanent “home” to the engineers and test drivers of the BMW development department and BMW M GmbH.

Over the years, the BMW facility at the Nürburgring Nordschleife has also served as the base for the BMW Motorsport Team. Activities for the German Touring Car Championship (DTM), Super Touring Car Championship (STW), ADAC GT Cup and various 24-hour race entries were all part of the program here, as well as the technical and organizational co-ordination for the popular BMW Ring Taxi.

The workshop area in particular has been significantly enlarged as compared to the previous facilities. Formerly comprising only four work bays, the premises now comprise a total of eleven work bays, a new wash center, and a new wheel alignment facility.

To ensure that the staff feels at home, a new leisure wing has been added with a common room. Since test results and protocols need to be transmitted quickly and securely to the research centers in Munich and Garching, technicians and engineers now work in a generously sized office with some 30 computer workplaces connected directly to the headquarters. Finally, two exhibition and conference rooms have been created.