There have been collaborative efforts in the automotive industry for many years, some of which we know about and others seem to be a bit of a mystery. The Ford and GM collaboration to build a new transmission is certainly a recent venture as is the partnership of Toyota and BMW to create the Supra and Z5. There is one partnership that seems odd that’s been going on for over twenty years and has won numerous awards. That partnership exists between BMW and John Deere.
The BMW Group does own several subsidiary companies including Designworks. Purchased in 1995, Designworks has been the creative consultant firm that has worked with several high-end clients such as HP, Microsoft, Corsair, Coca Cola, Embraer, Neil Pryde, Siemens trains and Singapore Airlines to name a few. The relationship with John Deere started in 1996 and has been growing ever since. This foundation began with Designworks creating the look of the H Crawler in 1996 for John Deere and has continued to be a collaboration that both companies have been able to capitalize on and enjoy along the way.
Most recently, the two companies received eight awards in international design competitions for various John Deere forestry and construction equipment. This is the largest number of awards received in any one year in this market. These awards represent the success of this collaboration and the fact that both sides are able to share their knowledge and continue to grow their products to be the machinery more people trust on their farms, in the construction business and out in the forest. Many of us have heard the songs and sayings regarding the John Deere equipment and how impressive it can be when it’s put to the test and given the chance to perform.
At the beginning of 2016, two of the crawler dozers were recognized with the Red Dot Award for outstanding product design. This was followed up in December when five of the products received the Good Design award. These five producers are the 850K and 1050k Crawlers, the 8434L Wheeled Feller Buncher, the 410L Backhoe Loader and the 848L Skidder. The Buncher was also awarded for the improvements made in productivity and working conditions, the Backhoe received additional awards for its capability in enhancing productivity and operating ease and comfort while the Skidder receives additional awards for outstanding performance and its anti-fatigue and comfort solutions. The eighth award came in January when the 1050K Crawler was a winner of the iF jury award.
These machines all have the benefit of the impressive and longstanding collaboration between Designworks and John Deere. Because Designworks is a subsidiary of BMW this gives us a partnership between one of the most admires sports luxury automakers in the world and one of the leaders in the construction of farm and construction equipment in the world. This is a partnership that certainly appears to make sense, but I bet you didn’t know that BMW and John Deere were partners at all before reading this today.