BMW hoping sparks fly as it extends supply deal
BMW has agreed a comprehensive supply deal covering its teams in Formula One, the World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) and the American Le Mans Series.
The deal sees NGK Spark Plug continue as a supplier of the team, and expands the partnership to include the American Le Mans Series for the first time. The WTCC cars and the drivers' suits will prominently display the NGK logo.
"To BMW the engine components' quality is a key to the highest level of reliability," said BMW motorsport director Mario Theissen. "We were able to continuously raise the life cycle goals of our engines during the pre-season period. Our official supplier NGK contributed significantly to that."
Norbert Neuhaus, deputy managing director of NGK Spark Plug Europe, said: "Motorsport not only requires high performing technology but also a strong team – and we are proud to be part of BMW Motorsport. The fact that our spark plugs have contributed to so many successes proves that NGK Spark Plug Co. Ltd. is undoubtedly the innovation-leading manufacturer of spark plugs. Together with BMW, we are looking forward to the coming seasons and to many exciting races."
The BMW Formula One team has earned six points so far in the 2009 Formula One season, all won by Nick Heidfeld, despite finishing third in the 2007 constructors' championship. The team's commercial deals, including both cash and supply, are thought to be close to US$400 million, though more than half of that comes direct from its BMW parent group.
- Length of contract: 1 year
- Annualised value: US$800,000
- Overall value: US$800,000