Luxury Driving Schools: The BMW Performance Driving School is an educational opportunity for drivers of all levels to hone skills behind the wheel of a BMW. Three types of courses are taught at the BMW Performance Center of Spartanburg, South Carolina. The New Drivers Program presents one- and two-day courses for teenagers and novice drivers. The Driver's Program, which also is offered in one day and two-day sessions, teaches both BMW owners and non-owners how to utilize professional driving principles through hands-on, behind-the-wheel practice. Pupils are shown accident-avoidance maneuvers and driving techniques on a specially designed course with a water-wall corridor, a skid pad, a slalom area, an autocross circuit and a lifestyle course, which simulates real-driving scenarios. The exterior radius of the course is nine-tenths of mile. The course is configured to simulate as many real-driving circumstances as possible.
Classes are taught with students driving current models of BMWs. Participants of the two-day course drive several BMW models to get acclimated to handling nuances associated with different vehicles. Controlling a car is the main purpose behind the courses. The instructors are BMW-certified in Munich and possess varying levels of professional-driving experience. Many instructors come from NASCAR, the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA), or the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA).
The M School is offered as a one-day and a two-day package. M School is a learning forum for high-performance-driving enthusiasts. Albeit these courses stress control and not speed, the M School teaches participants how to safely yet aggressively maximize the BMW driving experience. The M-coupe vehicles, the Z4, the M, M5, and M6, are used exclusively. Catered meals and special gifts are included for students attending M School.
Graduates of M School may enroll in Advanced M School, which is held at the Virginia International Raceway. Students must be graduates of the BMW M5 or Z8 programs, the two-day car-control clinic or the two-day M School. Drivers who have either sanctioned racing experience or attended other certified racing schools also are permitted to attend the Advanced M School. The two-day course teaches highly aggressive driving techniques, including cornering, braking, and accelerating at high speeds. Students have access to the raceway's country club during the two-day affair. It is a great way to unwind and meet fellow enthusiasts of high-performance driving.
The price range of the courses goes from $495 up to $3,995. Visit BMW's Web site for specific details on cost and available dates.
For LxM James Rothaar
Company: BMW of North America
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