The mid-engined, Giugiaro-styled M1 is arguably the most iconic BMW ever made, and it’s rare as an honest politician too, with the newly-formed BMW Motorsport GmbH division having produced just 460 of them from 1978 onwards.
The modified example that you see here has another claim to fame as it was once co-owned by late Fast & Furious star Paul Walker.
Listed recently on Bringatrailer.com, this unique BMW M1 is being auctioned off, and the highest bid currently stands at $390 000, which equated to around R5.9 million at the time of writing.
According to the auction website, this 1980 example spent its early years in Germany, before being imported to the US in 1995 and after 2011 it formed part of the AE Performance Collection shared by Walker and Roger Rodas. The current owner bought it in 2014.
However, the car has been thoroughly modified, with a Procar-style body kit, tri-colour BMW Motorsport livery, three-piece BBS wheels and a custom exhaust. The 3453cc straight-six engine was modified in the early 1980s and according to the listing it produces around 260kW.
For the record, the original M1 was good for 204kW, which doesn’t sound like a lot today, but that was still enough to make it the fastest German road car in the late ‘70s.
The M1 was developed by BMW Motorsport as a homologation model for FIA Group 5 racing, and according to BMW the racing versions – when fitted with a turbocharger – could produce up to 700kW, which must have been astounding at the time.
Formed around a tubular space frame designed by Ital Engineering, the BMW M1 road car weighed just 1300kg, which along with the mid-engined layout, made it a truly agile machine.
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