BMW’s partnership with Moto GP begins its 13th year in 2011. On that occasion BMW decided to give the bikers a treat by replacing the X6M safety car with a new BMW 1 Series M Coupe.
The car begins its career as the pace car for the entire season from March 19. It is also a good promotional buildup for the 1M Coupe ahead of its official market launch in April. The safety car features a special livery inspired by BMW’s racing colors, and it’s upgraded thoroughly for the job. Only the 250 kW/340 hp straight-six M TwinPower Turbo engine and the entire drivetrain are taken from the production car.
It gets high performance suspension with an adjustable race track set-up and 19-inch mixed tyres measuring 255/35 at the front and 285/30 at the rear, as well as a six-piston fixed-calliper racing brake system.
To mention some of its highlights, the BMW 1 Series M Coupe Safety Car comes with a carbon fibre-reinforced bonnet featuring additional large air vents, as well as polycarbonate side and rear windows. special lightweight titanium race exhaust system not only saves weight but also delivers a captivating sound for the benefit of the spectators. How thoughtful!
The interior of the BMW Safety Car is a model of uncompromising purism. A rollover cage bolted behind the B-pillar, the absence of rear seats, two racing bucket seats with 6-point safety belts, an M steering wheel in alcantara and a fire extinguisher are all standard in the Safety Car.
The deployment of the brand-new BMW 1 Series M Coupe Safety Car marks the continuation of BMW M GmbH’s successful partnership – begun in 1999 – with Dorna Sports, the organisers of the MotoGP World Championship. With a fleet of eight vehicles, BMW is supporting the safe running of the motorcycle world championship in the current race season. As well as the official BMW 1 Series M Coupe Safety Car, this year sees two further reserve Safety Cars from BMW M GmbH present at the track: a BMW X6 M and a BMW M3. In addition, the organising team has been given a BMW X5 M for the Safety Officer and a BMW ActiveHybrid X6 for the stewards. On call this season as a Medical Car is a BMW 535i Touring. There will also be two Safety Bikes contributing to the safe running of race weekends: a BMW S 1000 RR and a BMW HP2 Sport. The ceremonial handover of the vehicles took place at BMW M in Garching-Hochbrück on 28th February 2011. It was on this occasion that Dr Kay Segler, Director of BMW M GmbH, and Carmelo Ezpeleta, CEO Dorna Sports, made an advance announcement that the successful partnership would be extended until 2016, before sealing the agreement in a signing ceremony.