This 1980 BMW M1 Is More Special Than Most


BMW might be in the habit of putting M badges on just about everything these days but that wasn’t always the case. When the BMW M Division was first born it began with one special car that set high standards. That supercar was the M1 and this one that’s just become available at auction was originally ordered by the man who led the M Division itself.

That man is Jochen Neerpasch. Before taking the lead at BMW’s M Division he was a successful race car driver before changing careers to manage motorsports teams. In his leadership role at BMW, he passionately drove the development of the M1 in a quest to plant a flag for the company in the world of motorsports.

Despite being a commercial failure, the M1 did just that and continues to be a highly-desirable model decades later. This particular model on consignment through RM Sotheby’s was Neerpasch’s personal car. The listing says that he bought the car as a gift to himself after leaving BMW in 1980. Certainly, that makes this car unique but there’s more to love about this M1.

Read: These Rare BMW M1 Wheels Will Cost You Almost As Much As A Toyota Corolla

This is one of just four M1s to leave the factory wearing Grey paint. It’s likely the only one to also have a brown interior. Neerpasch drove the car until he accepted a position at International Management Group and sold it in the mid-1980s. Of that, he told RM Sotheby’s “this was one of my mistakes in life.”

Even without its incredible history and rare paint color, this is still a very special car. The body was designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro and the chassis was crafted by Gian Paolo Dallara. The 3.5-liter fuel-injected inline-six under the rear decklid developed 273 hp (204 kW) and 243 lb-ft (330 Nm) of torque. It sends that power to the rear wheels only via a five-speed manual transmission built by ZF.

The whole package is on offer without reserve until the auction closes on November 26th. We wouldn’t be shocked to see it go for well over six figures. The buyer’s premium for anything over €200,000 is 15 percent on top of the price too.

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