BMW Individual 740Li By Esther Mahlangu Set For Auction

BMW has commissioned more than its fair share of art cars, including a 525i sedan vibrantly painted by Esther Mahlangu back in 1991. Now 25 years later, the German automaker and South African artist have teamed up again. But this time you’ll be able to actually buy the rolling work of art… or at least one wealthy patron will.

The collaboration centers around a new 7 Series. This time they’ve left the exterior alone, commissioning Mahlangu to paint the interior trim pieces in her traditional, colorful Ndebele motif.

“My art has taken me all over the world and I have seen many places,” said the artist. “I have painted many walls and objects and my work is in many museums but I am still Esther Mahlangu from Mpumalanga in South Africa. My heart was full of joy when BMW asked me again to paint for them.”

The carmaker wasn’t just going to install her work in just any old sedan, of course, so the BMW Individual division also gave it a special silver exterior paintjob, 20-inch wheels, and a cabin swathed in top-of-the-line full-grain leather in off-white and black with woven stitching and piping and a white Alcantara headliner.

Based on a 740Li in right-hand drive, the result is decidedly more low-key than their previous collaboration. It will be auctioned off for charity during the Frieze Art Fair in London, with proceeds going towards The Art Room – a project that supports childhood development.



  • BGM

    Here in Miami we have a guy named Romero Britto. Look him up and you will promptly realize that to call what he does *art* is to call what I do at the gym *bodybuilding*. I don’t know this woman but she’s even worse than Britto as an *artist*.

    • Six Thousand Times

      Britto does do interesting work. What you do in the gym? Well, I guess as long as you stick to the 3-second rule, whilst in the showers, it’s no harm done. 😉

      • BGM

        LOL! Isn’t there a name for when two dudes are in the locker room and their butts touch? It was only a second and I swear I didn’t enjoy it. And, look man, I am more the Jacques Louis David type of art guy but Britto is paint by numbers. Her admitted it himself, saying that he leaves the actual painting to his studies and had the unmitigated gall to say that Michelangelo did the same thing.

        • Six Thousand Times

          David’s pictures are also pretty and very well composed even if he was kind of a frightening guy in French history.

  • Six Thousand Times

    Hmm, not sure that I’d want my BMW done up in such a fashion but her art is really pretty.

  • Ary Wisesa

    That’s so artistic. Esther is surely very talented artist. I love her works, it’s so vibrant and “alive”. Good job to you both Esther and BMW team.

  • cool !

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