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Thread: BMW out of racing in US, WTF?

                  
   
  1. #1

    BMW out of racing in US, WTF?

    What are they thinking? Or more likely, why are they not thinking.

    Dropping the Ultimate Driving Machine and now dropping out of racing and dropping PTG. May not be buying another BMW, they ahave truely lost their focus.
    Terry Carraway
    02 Topaz E46 M3 SMG
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  2. #2
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    BMW should race the M6 against the Vettes in ALMS. Or the M5. They sell it and so why not race it. Might have a chance against the Vettes and AM's. They were getting their butts kicked by 911s this year in the ALMS.

    Dve Apker

  3. #3
    Senior Member 1996 328ti's Avatar
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    BMW NA pulling out

    Here's another article.
    http://www.theracesite.com/index.cfm...e&mag_id=12333

    by David Haueter

    There will be one less marque racing in the ALMS GT class in 2007, as BMW NA has decided to not race in the series next year. The reason for the pullout was that BMW NA simply feels they don't have a car that can be competitive in 2007 against the V8-powered Ferrari F430GT and Panoz, as well as the new Porsche 997 GT3 RSR that is on the way.

    "The E46 M3 went out of production with the 2006 model year and we had to make a decision on what to race next year," says BMW NA Racing Manager Larry Koch. "With the M3 we have now no longer in production, we didn't want to race a car we are not building anymore. If we had a new car coming out over the winter, we wouldn't have an issue, but we have a long time period before a replacement car is coming out."

    BMW NA and PTG discussed the possibility of racing the new Z4 M coupe, but decided that since it is so similar to the current M3 and uses the same engine, it would not be competitive enough either in 2007.

    As much as we would like to see BMW's racing in the ALMS again in 2007, BMW NA's decision makes sense. The M3's that are currently being raced by PTG first raced in the ALMS in 2001 with V8's as the M3 GTR. They sat out for two years and then were brought back again for the Grand Am GT class in 2004 with six-cylinders, where they had a dominant season. The cars are now five years old and in their third full season of racing and besides a couple of strong races at Lime Rock and Portland, have not been competitive with the Ferrari and Porsche. 2007 will be only the second time in the last twelve years that BMW NA has not been racing M3's, as they have competed in IMSA, Professional Sports Car Racing, World Challenge, Grand Am and ALMS over the last dozen years and have won multiple championships with Team PTG. 2007 will also be the first time since 1995 when Team PTG will not be contracted to BMW NA.

    "We had a contract with PTG that expired at the end of this year and with nothing to race next year, we had to tell them that we weren't going to renew the contract for 2007," explains Koch. "If PTG decides they want to go race something else next year, we didn't want to hold them back. They have a business to run."

    BMW NA and PTG will finish out the last three races of the 2006 season at Road America, Road Atlanta and Laguna Seca, and will hopefully return to the series with a factory effort in 2008. The next generation E92 is expected to be available in the U.S. in the fall of 2007 and more importantly (for racing) will have a V8 that should give the Bavarian cars the horsepower to run at the front. In the meantime, BMW racing fans can still cheer for the multiple BMW teams that are racing in Grand Am Cup, the Matt Connolly Motorsport team in Grand Am Rolex GT and the teams running 3 Series cars in Speed World Challenge Touring.

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    Senior Member chicane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinecone View Post
    What are they thinking? Or more likely, why are they not thinking.

    Dropping the Ultimate Driving Machine and now dropping out of racing and dropping PTG. May not be buying another BMW, they ahave truely lost their focus.
    Really a shame I would have loved to see the M coupe tear it up. If NA doesn't have faith enough in their own products to race them then why should we buy them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tripower View Post
    Really a shame I would have loved to see the M coupe tear it up. If NA doesn't have faith enough in their own products to race them then why should we buy them.
    1. The economics don't make sense as discussed in Dave Hauter's article above.
    2. The rules/classes are stacked against any BMW being competitive in ALMS or Grand-Am.
    I don't consider that a lack of faith in the product.
    It is unfortunate for us enthusiasts that BMW sells far more cars featuring luxury than cars featuring performance.
    Woody
    96 328is, 99 M Coupe, 04 330Ci

  6. #6
    But how many of us who buy for performance are out there selling cars for them?

    Basically, to me, BMW is selling out and becoming another Lexus. Bah.
    Terry Carraway
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    Senior Member chicane's Avatar
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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by woodym3 View Post
    1. The economics don't make sense as discussed in Dave Hauter's article above.
    2. The rules/classes are stacked against any BMW being competitive in ALMS or Grand-Am.
    I don't consider that a lack of faith in the product.
    It is unfortunate for us enthusiasts that BMW sells far more cars featuring luxury than cars featuring performance.
    I'm sorry but I am not buying the "rules/classes are stacked against them" argument. It's up to BMW to build cars that will field and be competitive. Win on Sunday, sell on Monday. BMW is just not serious about racing anymore. Look at Formula 1 or the afore mentioned ALMS, Grand-Am. I was watching the Speed Touring Car race a few weeks ago and the BMW's were getting eaten up by Acuras, Mazdas, and Audis. You mean to tell me that every single race series is stacked against BMW? Not buying it, sorry.

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    Yeah, the BMWs are getting eaten up in the Speed Touring Class just as you said. A few years ago the BMW 325i was the car to beat. Seventeen to twenty BMWs were in the field. When Mazda entered the series the SCCA officials allowed the 626s to run with more powerful engines and less weight than the BMWs. Why? Because Mazda throws tons of money at supporting many SCCA series. When Auberlen won the first Touring race this season at Sebring ALL of the BMWs received big weight penalties, even though it was te Acura TSX and Mazda 6 that dominated the top ten. Remember when the BMW Z4s appeared at the SCCA Runoffs and it was apparent they would beat the long dominate Miatas? At Mazda's urging the SCCA said the Z4s couldn't run because their mandatory hardtops weren't readily available in dealerships yet. BMW does not support the SCCA.

    Other examples: In the Rolex Grand Am series the Daytona Prototypes can use the BMW M5 V8 engine, but rev-limiters and air intakes are restricted by the rules makers so their one of their big sponsors, Pontiac, will not be beaten by privateer BMWs. When PTG returned to the Grand-Am GT class they were required to build new cars that were closer to production than the old ALMS cars. Within a year GA allowed the Pontiac GTO-R to compete with a tube-frame.
    Hey, I too wish BMW made a car that could win its class on a regualr basis, and I would like to see BMW NA supporting all the series like Porsche, Mazda, Pontiac, etc. BMW's marketing gurus just see things in a different light.
    Woody
    96 328is, 99 M Coupe, 04 330Ci

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    Senior Member Scotty's Avatar
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    So, BMW seems to be doing well in WTCC - first in points at the moment. The car is an E46 320si, which runs a relatively small engine. Super light, though. I suppose it doesn't fit well into any North American racing series?

    I wonder why BMW Motorsport doesn't continue tto offer an E46 with an engine that "fits" GrandAm or ALMS or World Challenge? I know things get political quickly when REWARDS and other "competitive balances" are used, but I'd like to see BMW make the effort.
    Scott Lowrey

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