BMW’s performance division, better known as BMW M, is celebrating its golden jubilee next week. And over its decorated 50 years of history, the company with the “most powerful letter in the world” has brought us some of the most iconic cars that have ever graced our roads, and more personally, some of our most memorable drives.
So to celebrate its 50th anniversary, BMW Malaysia has launched a nationwide search for the oldest BMW M models in the country – one for every model series. If you think you know of the oldest BMW M in the country, join in the celebrations by submitting your details via this link here.
Winners will stand a chance to receive exclusive BMW M merchandise, and a feature of their prized vehicle by BMW Group Malaysia. One winner will be selected for every BMW M model series, with special prizes for notable submissions as well. Submissions will close on 8 June 2022, so best get to it soon.
But what are these “iconic cars” that we speak of? Car enthusiasts like us probably already have it memorised at the back of our minds, but for the regular Joe who don’t know that they’re sitting on a pile of gold, here’s a small list to help you out.
The story of the BMW M as we know it today started in 1978 with the launch of the M1, six years after the division was formed with just a small huddle of 35 engineers within the BMW Group to work on motorsports projects. To this day, it remains as one of the most revered sports cars in the planet, with only 456 units ever produced.
The M1 holds dear especially to motorsports fans, too, as it went on to spawn the BMW M1 Procar. The BMW M1 Procar championship, which ran only two years in 1979 to 1980, saw two legendary drivers – the late Niki Lauda and Nelson Piquet – crowned champions in the respective years.
And then, there’s the M635CSi making its debut in 1984 as one of the most significant models in the history of the BMW M. Affectionately named ‘Sharknose’ and ‘Bayern-express’ by its most ardent fans, the M635CSi took the same high-performance inline-six engines concept of the M1 but marrying it to the luxury of the first-ever 6 Series model, paving the way for the M cars that we know and love today.
From then on, the rest is history, as they often say. The first (official) BMW M5 followed shortly after with the E28 in 1985, and just a year later saw the introduction of the iconic E30 BMW M3.
Over the years, each iteration of the M cars became better than they were ever before, and in between the “regular” model series BMW also gifted us several instant cult classics including the “clown shoe” Z3 M Roadster and 1M Coupe. Today, the BMW M line-up has grown significantly to now even include SUVs.
It’s starting to sound like we’re writing a love letter here (which isn’t too far removed from the truth, to be fair), so we’ll just stop here for now. But if you have a classic BMW M car in your garage, be sure to send it in to BMW Malaysia – because we know for a fact there are many more people out there waiting to share the love.