Unique biturbo BMW M1 put up for saleApril 10, 2019
The car set the speed record for liquefied gas
The British auction house Coys of Kensington offered for sale the rarest copy of the mid-engine BMW M1. This car was built by a journalist and racer Harald Ertl for a record speed on liquefied gas. On October 17, 1981, on the Volkswagen test track in Era-Lessin, he accelerated on the M1 to 310.4 kilometers per hour.
The construction of a unique M1 and the subsequent record became part of the British Petroleum advertising campaign to promote liquefied gas under the Autogas brand. The British wanted to make it an alternative to traditional gas for private cars and corporate parks, so they became interested in the proposal by Ertl, who was just looking for innovative solutions to adapt them to production cars. According to the plan, Ertl had to take the M1 road, redo its engine for gas, and accelerate to 300 kilometers per hour.
The work on a record car was commissioned to a sports tuning studio Gustav Hoecker Sportwagen-Service GmbH. It installed two KKK K26 turbochargers on the sports car and re-equipped the M88 ″ six ”under liquefied gas. Information booklets of the time said that the power increased from 280 to 410 horsepower, although, according to rumors, the real return was about 500 hp. Other companies joined the work on the car, so the unique BMW M1 received Blaupunkt acoustics integrated into the dashboard, lightweight Ronal wheels and a safety cage.
On October 17, 1981, on a Volkswagen test track in Era Lessins, Ertl accelerated on this M1 to 310.4 kilometers per hour. The data is provided by the driver himself and is not confirmed by independent sources. A few months later, Harald Ertl died in a plane crash when he flew to his family to celebrate Easter.
After that, the record-breaking BMW M1 changed several owners and in 1993 became part of the collection of an English pharmacist of Indian origin Puma Bhatia. In 1995, Bhatia passed away, and his son handed the car to the Midland Motor Museum. 10 years later it turned out that the director of the museum was selling exhibits, and started a case against him. There was no buyer for the unique BMW M1, so the police returned the car to the Bhatia family, where it was kept until recently.
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