After an 18-year absence, BMW returned to the German Touring Car Championship, i.e. the DTM (Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters) this year to fight off archrivals Mercedes-Benz and Audi.
The obvious choice for the model its racer would be based upon was the M3 coupe. DTM organizers had changed the rules and enforced many restrictions in order to ensure close competition – so every last detail was crucial in the M3’s battle against the A5 Coupe and the C-Class Coupe.
Even though it fielded three teams and six cars, compared to its rivals’ four teams and eight cars, Bruno Sprengler won five out of the season’s 10 races and took the driver’s championship, while BMW Team Schnitzer won the team’s title and the Munich-based company was awarded the manufacturer’s championship.
In honor of this triple success, BMW M GmbH launched the M3 DTM Champion Edition. Like the champion’s car, its bodywork sports a Frozen Black metallic color, the only one available for the 54 cars that will be manufactured, together with matt black alloys.
It also features a carbon fiber roof and boot lid, which are adorned with the M stripe, carbon fiber flaps and gurney wing, a BMW M logo to the rear of the front wheel arches and decals on the rear windows celebrating Sprengler’s and BMW’s triumph.
In the cabin, the sills replicate the Canadian driver’s helmet design and his signature, along with the car’s serial number, and are also embossed in the dashboard carbon fiber trim. The steering wheel is covered in Alcantara and, apart from carbon elements, there’s a black “Novillo” leather trim with “Palladium Silver” contrasting elements.
Owners of this limited edition will also get the Competition package, M Drive and the M Driver’s package, while the only available transmission is the seven-speed M DCT Drivelogic dual-clutch semi-auto. They won’t have to “suffer” the drawbacks of a stripped-out race replica, though, as features like heated seats, park distance control and the Professional navigation system will make everyday driving comfortable.
The BMW M3 DTM Champion Edition will be available from February 2013 in select markets with its price in Germany starting at €99,000 (US$130,000) including VAT (there’s no word on U.S. availability or pricing yet).
Each of the 54 owners will also have the chance to attend the BMW M Fascination Nordschleife training course at Nürburgring under the attention of Sprengler himself.
By Andrew Tsaousis