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    BMW CELEBRATES ART CAR 40TH

    BMW Group Classic has celebrated the 40th anniversary of the famous Andy Warhol BMW M1 Art Car with a new photoshoot – conducted by a competition winner found on Instagram...

    NEWS - BMW CLASSIC

    / #Andy-Warhol / #BMW-M1-Andy-Warhol / #BMW-M1-E26 / #BMW-E26 / #BMW-M1-Group-4 / #BMW-M1-Group-4-E26 / #BMW-M1-Andy-Warhol-E26 / #BMW / #BMW-M1-Art-Car / #BMW-M1-Art-Car-E26

    BMW has been celebrating the 40th anniversary of the iconic BMW M1 designed by Andy Warhol. The winner of last year's “Shootout 2018” social media contest, Stephan Bauer, won the chance to photograph BMW Art Car Number Four having competed against five other photographers. The group submitted their best classic BMW shots via Instagram, 29-year old Bauer from Germany then won the chance to create a number of images as part of his exclusive photoshoot.

    The 470hp BMW-M1-Group-4 was famously painted by Warhol via brush in less than half an hour, the artist stating: “I love this car. It’s more successful than the artwork."

    The BMW-M1 made its sporting debut in the #Procar-Series and entered the annals of Pop Art history at the same time. Warhol said that the speed at which he completed the task was a direct reflection of the nature of the subject matter – a very fast racing car.

    “I attempted to show speed as a visual image. When an automobile is really travelling fast, all the lines and colours are transformed into a blur,” Warhol said at the time.

    Soon after the last brush stroke had been applied, the BMW M1 took to the track for the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1979. The number 76 machine was driven by legendary German driver Manfred Winkelhock, Frenchmen Hervé Poulain and Marcel Mignot, the trio took the Art Car to second place finish in class – sixth overall.

    Bauer's contemporary shoot took place in an old factory building in Cologne where he created images juxtaposing the brightly coloured Art Car and the dour grey of the abandoned industrial structure. A later outdoor photography session used laser search lights to shroud the M1 in a mystical light. BMW has shared the shoot on the Facebook page and on Instagram Account of BMW Group Classic.
    • “I love this car – it’s more successful than the artwork,” commented Andy Warhol after he famously painted a BMW M1 racecar in 1979. Now, 40 years la “I love this car – it’s more successful than the artwork,” commented Andy Warhol after he famously painted a BMW M1 racecar in 1979. Now, 40 years later, the priceless piece of rolling art has been impressively showcased by a rather persuasive young Instagrammer…
      Last year, BMW Classic held a photography competition on Instagram, the winner of which would be granted the opportunity to exclusively shoot one of its cars out in the wild. The spoils ultimately went to the 29-year-old Munich-based automotive snapper Stephan Bauer, who, we’re pleased to say, is no stranger to Classic Driver.





      Seizing the chance to create something truly special, Bauer miraculously persuaded BMW Classic to bring arguably its most significant exhibit, the BMW M1 painted by the renowned American Pop artist Andy Warhol 40 years ago, to an abandoned old factory in Cologne. The resulting set of photographs is astonishing and portrays BMW’s fourth Art Car in a manner we’ve never seen before, aided by Bauer’s bold, high-contrast style and the soft golden sunlight pouring through the building’s myriad windows.

      It took Warhol less than half an hour to paint the Group 4-spec M1, the artist later remarking that his speed was a reflection of the statement made by his subject. A short while after it was completed, Hervé Poulain, Manfred Winkelhock and Marcel Mignot drove the car to sixth overall in the 1979 24 Hours of Le Mans. Congratulations Stephan – what a fitting way of casting new light on a priceless automotive treasure in this, its 40th year.
        More ...
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    James Elliott
    EDITOR’S WELCOME / #BMW / #BMW-M1-E26

    A series of fortunate events

    While the Octane mantra is to provide something (well, several things) for every enthusiast in each and every edition, it is hard to recall a more diverse issue than this one. And it is equally difficult to pinpoint a more adventurous one. In a lipsmackingly, delectably good sort of way, that is.

    For a start, Le Jog has long been regarded as the UK’s most gruelling reliability trial. Even in mild weather, HERO’s Land’s End to John O’Groats epic is pretty demanding, but when it snows and the roads are covered with treacherous ice, it is a mammoth test of physical and mental endurance even for the most experienced crews. Naturally, therefore, we sent a total novice on it in a BMW 1602: none other than F1 pundit Tony Jardine.

    At the opposite end of the scale was John Simister’s experience racing an 1899 De Dion tricycle at Brooklands, to commemorate the 120th anniversary of the UK’s first-ever motor racing meeting, which was held in Richmond. And wilder still was Glen Waddington’s stint in the passenger seat as rally legend Hannu Mikkola was reunited with his Safari Rally-winning Audi 200 Quattro on the very dirt tracks along which he drove to a momentous victory in 1987. On the surface, enjoying something as practical as a BMW M1 might seem a trifle tame in comparison, but rest assured that photographing this sublime straight-six supercar on the streets of New York was as challenging as anything else in this edition.

    Plus, further to celebrate the shapely Giugiaro-styled BMW, we have put together the definitive package, including what it is like to live with one for 30 years, Stephen Bayley’s take on the priceless Andy Warhol Art Car, the wonderfully improvised Procar racing series, the #BMW-M88 engine, and how – via the famous 2008 Hommage – the #BMW-M1 even helped to shape the groundbreaking #BMW-i8 .
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    Classics at La Sarthe The biennial gathering for the #2016-Le-Mans-Classic always attracts some stunning BMWs. If you’re keen on classic racing you really should take a trip down memory lane at the biennial Le Mans Classic Words: Jeroen de Laat. Photography: De Laat Foto / #Le-Mans-Classic

    Once a year the streets of #Le-Mans and surrounding villages combine together to create one of the longest and most demanding race circuits in the world. Although the shape and length of the track has been modified several times over the past century, the Circuit de la Sarthe has been hosting a 24-hour motor race here since 1923. The track’s basis is formed by the pit straight and some other parts of the short permanent Bugatti circuit, including the legendary Esses chicane and the iconic Dunlop Bridge. But the larger part consists of roads that are open to the public for the rest of the year, making a total length of 13.6km in its current shape. The fact that 85 percent of the lap is spent at full throttle makes it a fast track that is extremely demanding for man and machine. This is part of the appeal for teams, drivers and spectators alike, and one of the reasons why this amazing circuit is almost celebrating its 100th anniversary.

    With the ever-increasing number of spectators, as well as the extensive safety measures required to turn roads into a race track, the event requires a lot of preparation. And that is what caused French classic event organiser Patrick Peter to have a brainwave approximately a decade ago. Why not benefit from all these efforts and have a classic race on this temporary track as well? The operator of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Automobile Club de L’Ouest (ACO), liked the idea and Le Mans Classic was born.

    The event has a 24-hour format, although realistically we cannot expect the legendary and often priceless racers of yesteryear to compete for 24 hours, so the past century of motoring is divided into six eras making six classes, so cars can compete with their contemporary rivals. Each grid performs several one-hour stints over a period of 24 hours, so in total there is 24 hours of continuous and varied action.

    The 2016 Le Mans Classic was the eighth running of this classic event. Taking place every other year it is blessed with a booming public interest that resembles the original 24-hour race. And just like that event, there were a series of support events to get the public warmed up. These included: close to 40 Group C cars racing, including 20 of Porsche’s legendary 962; the Jaguar Classic Series, which saw 19 times 24-Heures participant Andy Wallace win at the wheel of the D-Type which won the race in 1955 (driven by Mike Hawthorn and Ivor Bueb); and Little Big Mans, where the kids do their own race in miniature versions of the actual Le Mans cars, complete with a running Le Mans start and driven by real petrol engines. There’s also a great car auction, while the exceptionally sunny and warm weather completed this year’s package.

    It was no wonder then that a record 123,000 spectators flocked to the circuit to see 550 cars, 1000 drivers (among them ten former Le Mans winners) and 8500 club cars on display. The event saw a celebration of BMW’s centenary in the form of popular club sessions, which allowed club members the rare opportunity of doing a few laps on the official circuit, and BMW demos, which featured BMW M cars ranging from the earliest cars up to the most recent models. We were very happy to get a few passenger laps to experience the track in its full glory!

    In BMW’s exhibition we found several special cars including: the legendary #BMW-328-Touring-Le-Mans ; a 507 Roadster; the 1977 Roy Lichtenstein E21 320i Art Car (that participated in the 1977 Le Mans race); and the V12 LMR that took the overall victory in 1999.

    Need more? How about the prestigious Concours Le Mans Heritage Club for cars that actually raced at Le Mans awarding the McLaren F1 GTR with a best in class award for the 1983-2016 period? And all this was on offer even before the racing began in earnest!

    On the Saturday afternoon Jamaican sprinter Yohan Blake, main sponsor Richard Mille (main partner of Le Mans Classic with EFG), and Pharrell Williams opened the event under the supervision of FIA president Jean Todt. The event started off with the oldest cars in ‘Plateau One’. A Swiss gentleman we have seen racing BMWs many times before, Christian Traber (who is well-known behind the steering wheel of a 2002 and an #BMW-M1-E26 / #BMW-E26 ), was now racing against BMW.

    Together with the American former SCCA driver, Spencer Trenery, they steered their 1939 Talbot Lago to first position overall, with another Talbot right behind them, relegating the BMW 328s to third and fourth places; the French équipe Bally/Leseur took third with the German 328 team Otten and Horbach not far behind. In total nine 328s took part. It was amazing to see so many of these cars on track at one time, and it gave us a real feeling for what club racing must have been like in the late 1930s.

    Apart from the BMW engines in several prototype cars from the 1960s and 1970s, especially the #M10 and #M12 four-cylinder, we saw a #BMW-2002 in action. The Group 2 2002Ti of Renavand and Bonny completed the event without issue and even though there was no fighting the mighty Lola T70s and the M12-powered Chevrons, they duo stood their ground in their own class.

    More BMW action was to be had when the ‘Plateau Six’ cars entered the arena. Two wonderful #BMW-E9 3.0 CSL Coupés caught our eye. Adrian Brady had a disappointing event when he ran into issues with his CSL during qualifying. Even though the mechanics thought it was only a head gasket failure they didn’t want to take any risks with the rare #BMW-M49 engine and parked the car up for the rest of the event. The second #BMW-3.0-CSL-E9 driven by Werginz/Janits/Andree/Huber failed after just two laps into race two. We spoke to Andree afterwards and learned that a broken con rod bolt unfortunately ruined their event. It was a pity after seeing so many CSLs being successful run at other events.

    In grid number six we saw some flame-spitting Lola prototypes, although when it came to BMWs spitting flames, the M1 immediately comes to mind. Christian Traber was fastest of his class with his M1 but two other M1s also completed the event without any issues.

    Every edition of Le Mans Classic is bigger and better than the previous one, and this eighth running of the event was no exception. It was a wonderful experience. The only down side is that we now need to wait two years for the next one. We recommend that you make a note in your diary to keep some days free in July 2018!

    Lovely #BMW-507 and V12 LMR were exhibited in the BMW pavilion; this year’s event was opened by Jamaican sprinter Yohan Blake, Richard Mille, Pharrell Williams and Jean Todt.

    Mixed grids add to the glamour of the Le Mans Classic.

    Right: BMW-engined Lola caught in wonderful flame-spitting action.

    Above: Superb #BMW-2002-Ti-Group-2 car of Renavand and Bonny went very well in ‘Plateau 5’ but couldn’t hope to keep up with the Lolas, Porsches and Ferraris in its class. Below and Left: #BMW owners had the rare chance to drive the full Le Mans circuit in their road-going cars during the event.

    Even though they never won the event the #BMW-M1 is always linked with Le Mans – they competed here for eight consecutive years from 1979 to 1986 – and Christian Traber’s example (above, seen leading a Ferrari 512 BB LM) was as quick as ever being the fastest M1 in its class. Below: The Latham and Baud M1 looking great with driving lights fitted.

    Above: Little Big Mans sees children competing in scaled down replicas complete with the traditional Le Mans running start! Left: Stunning (full-size) #BMW-328 pulling away from the start.

    The Roy Lichtenstein #BMW-E21 / #BMW-320i-Art-Car that took part in the 1977 Le Mans race looked as fantastic as ever – what a machine!

    Sadly both the CSLs entered this year suffered engine troubles but we know they’ll be back to fight another day.
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    RM Sothebys Monterey Sale, 19-20 August / ESTIMATE: $450,000 - $600,000

    / #1981 / #BMW-E26 / #BMW-M1 / #BMW-M1-E26 / #BMW-M88 / #M88 / #BMW

    This Inka orange M1 is one of the 98 road cars painted in this hue and was originally delivered to an Italian dealership where it remained until 1984 when it was sold to a Japanese collector. Once in Japan it was used only sparingly and when it left Japan nearly 30 years later it had covered just 8000 miles. Since it has been in the US its mileage has crept up to 12,800 miles showing that it’s still in a good, road-worthy condition and it should provide its new owner with an excellent investment. We hope they use it from time to time too.
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