Celebrating 50th Anniversary of BMW Motorsport - Engine Builder Magazine

Celebrating 50th Anniversary of BMW Motorsport

In celebration of the 50th anniversary of BMW Motorsport, the BMW CCA Foundation will present The Power of M at The Ultimate Driving Museum in Greer, South Carolina, a dynamic and historic display that will open to the public on May 16.

The exhibit will feature 25 cars and one motorcycle from throughout BMW Motorsport’s history, including significant race cars and their roadgoing counterparts from BMW M. 

In advance of the exhibit’s official opening, a limited number of tickets are available for the May 13 celebratory gathering at the BMW Zentrum in Greer, South Carolina. The gala will recognize BMW Motorsport notables, such as Jochen Neerpasch, managing director of BMW Motorsport GmbH from 1973-79. Also on hand will be Eddie Cheever, a member of the original BMW Junior Team created by Neerpasch in 1977 and winner of the 1998 Indy 500. Others from BMW Motorsport’s important and storied past are expected to attend.

Information about “An Evening with Jochen Neerpasch & Eddie Cheever” and how to purchase tickets to the May 13 gathering and other event details may be found at BMWCCAF50. Tickets will include a visit to The Ultimate Driving Museum, just a few miles from the BMW Zentrum, to view the display on May 14.

The list of significant BMWs in The Power of M display includes:

  • The 3.0 CSL “Batmobile,” the first car developed by the newly-formed BMW Motorsport as a homologation special for racing in the European Touring Car Championship, and a very early racing CSL, campaigned to a series of victories by the Dutch National Team.
  • A roadgoing M1, the first M-badged car ever built by BMW Motorsport, along with an original 1979 M1 Procar.
  • A rare Johnny Cecotto special edition of the roadgoing E30 M3 alongside an ex-Steve Soper M3 with a significant history in DTM racing, and an exclusive E36 M3 Lightweight paired with an E36 M3 raced to victory by Team PTG in the American Le Mans Series.
  • Five generations of M5s, from the original E28 M5 through the F10.
  • A pre-production 1 Series M Coupe, a rare Lime Rock Edition E92 M3, and a not-for-U.S. E90 M3 CRT.
  • An ex-Team RLL Daytona 24-Hour-winning M8 GTE, as campaigned in IMSA.
  • Although not technically an M car, the Motorsport-developed 2002 turbo, along with a Euro-spec M635CSi.
  • BMW’s 100-year tradition of race-winning sport motorcycles, represented by the M 1000 RR Superbike built by BMW Motorrad in the first collaboration with BMW Motorsport.

Sponsors and supporters of The Power of M: Celebrating 50 Years exhibit include Tire Rack, Continental Tire, FCP Euro, BMW Value Service, BMW North America, The Werk Shop, CocoMats, Century BMW, Hagerty, and Enthusiast Auto Group.

The Power of M will include informative displays throughout, telling the history of the cars and BMW M in words and photos. 

The exhibit will also be commemorated with a lavishly produced book that features the authoritative history of each car and the M brand/BMW Motorsport, with text by Jackie Jouret alongside new photography by Klaus Schnitzer and archival photos. The books will be sold through the BMW CCA Foundation Store as well as Amazon. 

Open to the public from May 16 through January 2023,The Power of M: Celebrating 50 Years will be the fifth major exhibit staged by the BMW CCA Foundation. It follows these previous major exhibitions: 2017’s Heroes of Bavaria; 2018’s The ICON: 50 Years of the 2002; 2019’s PASSION: 50 Years of BMW Cars and Community; and 2020’s GENESIS: BMW From the Beginning, which closed in May 2021 

following a successful year-long run at The Ultimate Driving Museum – right across Highway 101 from BMW Manufacturing, and next door to the BMW Performance Center in Greer, South Carolina.

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