“The Hofmeister Kink represents an important part of BMW’s design legacy, a bit of insider info for BMW owners and enthusiasts,” Kevin Campbell, head of CRM at BMW North America, said in a statement. “The 60th anniversary presents a timely opportunity to celebrate this iconic feature by providing consumers with an engaging platform to drive their own Hofmeister Kink and experience BMW’s performance design ethos on the everyday roads near them.”
Performance Art used images of every BMW model produced since 1962 to create “vectorized versions of each model’s individual ‘kink’ shape,” according to a press release about the campaign.
“Our goal is to help the world rediscover this incredible, iconic brand asset by seeing it with fresh eyes— and then literally driving it,” said Ian Mackenzie, chief creative officer of Performance Art. He added that “using AI to detect and map Hofmeister Kink-shaped curves on a roadmap of the U.S. wasn’t a needle-in-a-haystack kind of task—it was a needle-in-10,000-haystacks kind of Herculean feat.”
The computation process involved using Google technology and an open-source neural framework called Darknet. The resulting model then analyzed more than 3.9 million miles of roads looking for matches. The agency then used the AI results to create 55,000-plus geo-coordinates to power the user interface, which uses aerial photography and satellite imagery to pinpoint the road kinks.