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article imageAt age 40: BMW’s M division

By Kyle Busch     Jun 14, 2012 in Technology
This article reports on the history of BMW’s M division and the high performance cars it has built for driving enthusiasts over the last 40 years.
Back in 1966 BMW started to sell cars in the United States. Needless to say, the ‘Ultimate Driving Machines’ have really taken root with driving enthusiast.
The automaker’s M division turned 40 last month and it has provided the most satisfying BMW drives of all!
In 1972 the company’s M arm was under the Motorsport name and during most of the 70s, it focused on BMW’s racing efforts.
However, in 1971 it all changed with the release of the BMW M1. And why did the driving public get such a powerful high performance car? BMW Motorsport wanted to send the M1 racing and in order to do so, the rules said that the car needed to be homologation (a specific number of the M1 needed to be sold as a production/street car). Thus, it was actually a BMW race car sold to be driven on the road.
The M1 was BMW’s initial M badged car, and although racing continued to be the focus, the Motorsport division dropped a M1 engine in the 6-Series to make the M635CSi and the 5-Series to make the M535i.
In 1986 the first M3 came on the automotive scene. Again, a specific number were built and sold as road cars to satisfy racing homologation requirements. The cars were built in very small numbers (something like 200-250 units) and thus they are indeed quite scarce and exclusive!
In 1883 Motorsport division changed its name to BMW M GmbH. It went on to build an M version of most all BMW street cars and even SUVs. Some BMW purists question the almost all models getting the M treatment. However, there is simply no denying that over the past 40 years, the M division has delivered many excellent cars (vehicles).
And most importantly, the best of the high performance Ms can be purchased in some instances for much lower prices when they were new. And will they still run like race cars today? You bet they do!
Here is a list of the standout BMW M cars over the last 40 years, they include the:
1978 M1
1984 M635CSi
1987 M6
1987 M5
1988 M3 Coupe
1991 M5
1994 M3 Coupe
2000 M5
2001 M3 Coupe
2001 M Coupe
2007 M5
2011 1-Series M Coupe
2001 M3 Coupe
2013 M5
The BMW M division and its racing bloodline have resulted in driving excellence!
More about cars automobiles vehicles, BMW M division history, 40 years of performance, racing homologation requirements
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