The BMW M Hybrid V8 gets a new livery and a driver lineup. Today, at an event hosted by the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles, BMW Motorsport, along with BMW M Team RLL, revealed an avant-garde livery which leverages the iconic BMW M colors. Along with the livery, BMW also revealed the driver lineup for the GTP class of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
Experienced Driver Lineup
They are BMW M works drivers Connor De Phillippi (USA), Philipp Eng (AUT), Augusto Farfus (BRA) and Nick Yelloly (GBR). When the car makes its race debut at the 61st running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona (USA) on January 28-29, they will receive big-name support from the IndyCar series driver Colton Herta (USA). The remaining endurance drivers will be announced at a later date.
The LMDH racing car was unveiled in front of BMW M CEO Franciscus van Meel, Head of BMW M Motorsport Andreas Roos, IMSA President John Doonan, and the owners of BMW M Team RLL, Bobby Rahal, David Letterman and Patrick Lanigan.
Designed in California
The BMW M Hybrid V8 was designed by BMW Group Designworks in Los Angeles under the program leadership of Michael Scully, Global Director, Automotive and Advanced Design. The stunning livery features a deconstructed M logo and colors to “form abstract triangular pattern across” the racing car’s body design.
The design also features “Mbedded” references to the BMW logo, and utilizes both blue and purple elements to pronounce the natural colors of electricity. Additionally, the works livery carries a matte black extension ahead of the cockpit beneath the driver’s side of the windscreen.
BMW says this is the only black foil on the car, as all other black areas shown at the launch will remain in their native carbon fiber finish. And true to the form over function philosophy at BMW, this approach reduces the weight by 25 to 30 percent compared to a conventional livery for race cars.
Of course, the standout piece is the laser-lit kidney grille. As expected, the iconic design element is functional in terms of cooling, aerodynamics and downforce. And interesting enough, the Designworks team used a design element from our favorite BMW Concept: the M Vision Next. Just like on the concept, the front of the car invokes the faceted hood, nested BMW logo, and inverted ‘Y’ configuration between the kidneys. And if the kidney grille was not enough to remind us of their roots, BMW also used signature twin headlights on each side.
Laser Lights Around The Grille
Innovation is the name of the game with the BMW M Hybrid V8. Thus, the kidneys’ lighting uses new technology from Swiss company L.E.S.S. SA. Instead of the LED lighting, the new tech generates light by a nano-active optical fiber trigged by a laser. The result? Ultra-bright and ultra-uniform light within a very small form factor. And you might have guessed by now – weight and energy savings. This technology was also presented as a future vision for the first time in the BMW M Vision Next in 2019.
From the side, the BMW M Hybrid V8 showcases a shark-nose design cue and a boomerang-shaped guide vane just behind the front wheel arch. There are even M mirrors and a modern interpretation of the Hofmeister kink.
640 horsepower, 8200 rpm
Under the hood you will find a new P66/3 motorsport engine. The output is regulated to 640 horsepower and 650 Nm / 479 lb-ft. The maximum RPM is limited to 8,200.
Testing of the M Hybrid V8 will continue at Petit LeMans this fall, followed by the official roll-out at Daytona 24 Hours in January 2023.