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At the BMW Museum, 82 years of carmaking shines

Road Trip 2011: Located adjacent to BMW headquarters and the uber-modern BMW Welt, this homage to eight-plus decades of car-making is a must-see for any real fan of the famous Germany brand.

This is the main spiral visitors ramp at the BMW Museum in Munich, Germany. CNET reporter Daniel Terdiman visited as part of Road Trip 2011.

MUNICH, Germany--I might have thought I was in Frank Lloyd Wright's famous Guggenheim Museum, but that was just a visual trick brought on by the spiral ramp.

Actually, I was at the BMW Museum, the car-maker's homage to its eight decades of making automobiles, motorcycles, and engines. And with 125 of its most beloved machines displayed for its biggest fans and most loyal customers, it was hard not to be taken in by the history of what the company long called the "ultimate driving machine."

As part of Road Trip 2011, I took some time to check out BMW's choice of its greatest vehicles and was treated to a range of magnificent cars from across the decades. Yet, while some car museums showcase their collections chronologically, BMW has chosen another motif, that of themes. And that means visitors can see how the company's design, engines, cars, motorcycles, and more evolved over the years.

Opened in 1973, it was fully refurbished in 2008 and now is part of a fully BMW-branded area of Munich that also includes the company's headquarters, a major production plant, and its famous "BMW Welt," or BMW World, which showcases everything the company has going on today.

Please check out my full photo gallery from the museum and take a ride down a lane of more than 80 years of some of the best car and motorcycle making in the industry's history.