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I know the panels circled in yellow are headlight washers and exist on many cars now. However, on several BMWs I have noticed an extra panel, circled in red. It is not symmetric and I have only noticed it to be located more on the passenger side. What is it for?

enter image description here

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up vote 8 down vote accepted

Red one is likely to be for a pull hitch. If you get stuck you can insert a screw with the hoop on the end and it will allow someone to pull you out with a chain or winch, putting load in the appropriate place (not the bumper). The screw device is probably in your trunk somewhere.

From the owners manual

enter image description here

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Didn't know what to look for until you told me what it was. I found the picture and added it to your answer as you deserve the credit. – Move More Comments Link To Top May 16 '11 at 18:19
IIRC, they are also used as tie-down points when the cars are on a cargo ship. – Peter Loron Jan 26 '12 at 5:46

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