BMW Drivers Club Melbourne

  • 2 Apr 2021 10:49 AM | Anonymous

    What is it?

    The latest 3 Series Hybrid, basically adding an 83 kW electric motor and a battery to the 135 kW 320i. It can be driven in pure electric mode, pure (?) petrol mode, or both together for 215 kW which exceeds the power of a 330i – hence the 330e rather than 320e model name (there is a 320e in some markets).

    What is it for?

    The claimed pure electric range of 57 kms would allow most people to complete their journeys on most days without using petrol. Electric cars’ range is usually better around town than on the highway but I achieved 56 kms on a charge on each of 3 predominantly highway trips. Electric running costs about half that of petrol power and, even with 100% brown coal electricity, less pollution. Yet the performance at the top end is that of the thirstier 330i with the “wall of torque” character at the lower, lazier end, of a 320d. Always impressively quiet. What’s not to like?

    OK, what is not to like?

    It’s 115 kg heavier, but as that is all low down (mostly under the rear seats and the bottom of the boot) I could not tell on the road. The boot is a mere 5 litres smaller. And the petrol tank is 40 litres not 59 litres, but still good for over 600 km, probably nearer 700 kms on the open road, both of which comfortably beat my 1981 E21 323i. It does cost about $15,000 more than a 320i (but has more equipment as standard) and about $7,000 more than a 330i (before taxes and on roads).

    Does it work?

    Yes, very well indeed. Unlike many electric cars it does not take off like a scalded cat when you as much as look at the accelerator. The drive away (or “tip in from stationary”) is smooth and torque-convertor-auto like. It will even creep like an auto. Except silent, which is always a bit odd the first time. Stop-Start is not a thing here. In electric mode it just stops moving and starts moving, silently and without delay. If the battery is “flat” there is enough kept in reserve to move off under electric power whilst the petrol engine gets going. It will recharge the battery when slowing down or going down hill so magically there always seems to be some battery on hand. The transition from electric to petrol is indiscernible unless one is watching the petrol consumption meter which suddenly springs to life. Give it the beans and the electric motor fills in the torque curve and pushes you down the road and keeps assisting the petrol engine until your licence is melting before your eyes. Turbo lag is not a thing here either.  Paddle shift gear changes are instant and the response is, well, electric!

    What about all the tech?

    It’s got loads of tech toys and they all work faultlessly. The laserlights are phenomenal, active cruise control (an acquired art) is brilliant, lane keep assist (keeps you in the centre of the lane which can give an annoying wriggle like action) can be turned off and stays off, lane departure control (which helps steer you back into a lane if you drift out) works brilliantly but can be turned off, and will auto turn off if you start driving spiritedly on twisty roads, but comes on each start. It defaults to Hybrid mode on start up (I think that’s good) but the selection buttons (for Xtraboost for example) are right by the stop/start button. “Hey BMW” commands worked for me but I did not try gesture control. I did not try adjusting the various camera views to get rid of the, to me, annoying warning marks which I felt only obscured my view of they very thing they were trying to stop me from hitting. But the cameras can be used as a 360 degree dash cam, which is clever. I did not try the “post crash iBrake” or the many crash avoidance features for obvious reasons.

    Did you like it?

    Very much. So much so, I bought one. Well, ordered it, at least. Could be here in July, computer chip shortages and other possible hold ups permitting.

    So, whose car did you drive then?

    Matthew Hede from Waverley BMW was kind, and trusting, enough to let me have their demo 330e M Sport model for the weekend. Waverley BMW are club sponsors and offer a 3 years new car service package at no cost to BMWDCM members. As well as lending me the car, Matthew carefully went through the options I had selected to make sure I was getting the best car and the best deal for my needs.

    Lawrence Glynn | Member #3
    BMW Drivers Club Melbourne

  • 1 Apr 2021 11:00 AM | Anonymous


    Dear members

    Summer may be over but we are enjoying some beautiful autumn weather! 

    March began with our members meeting at Berwick BMW where we had almost 100 members and guests attend.  It was also great to able to get up close and personal to the new M3 and M4.  Thanks very much to Berwick BMW for inviting us, we had a great night.


    On 7 March, we had round 2 of the Traction Tyres/Yokohama Drivers Championship at Rob Roy Hill Climb for the very first time.  The sun was shining and there were many happy drivers, most improving their times each run they did.


    The following day on 8 March, we held a come and try day for Race Chix Motorsport in conjunction with Shannons International Women's Day Festival at Broadford. It was amazing to see so many women on track and so many girls participating in the off track events.  We hope to see all those who attended on track again in the future!


    On 14 March we had a family day out to the Werribee Zoo!  We were greeted with a brilliant sunny day and were taken on a safari bus tour so everyone could get up close to the animals.


    16 March was our last mid-week sunset drive until our days become longer again.  This time we departed from Waverley BMW where we were treated to a nice spread of food before our trip up Mt Dandenong.  We had over 30 cars in attendance who all enjoyed the spectacular view of the Melbourne city lights.


    Our month ended with E30 Racing Round 2 at Winton over the weekend and a twilight drive for our members in Geelong on Sunday, where members finished their evening with dinner at Grill'd Geelong. Taking the long way to dinner can be quite enjoyable when you do it with great company. 

    We had quite a few members racing at Winton, especially one member, Anton Bergman, who didn't know he was racing until the day before!  You can read about his eventful weekend here



    Welcome to our new members, Simon Latimer, Steve Roberts, Neil Phillips,Anthony Inguanti, Timothy Sung, Richard Altrieth, James Smith, Alisdair Reeves, Peter Sinclair, Sijy Prakasan, Claire Jackson, Tobia Zappia, Guy Nutting, Alex Oh, Neve McConalogue, Wayne Cooper, William Allan, Armon Dhingra and Barry Coates. We look forward to seeing you at an event soon!


    Don't forget to catch up with this month's update from our President, Graeme Bell here.


    Here's what we've got planned in April:

    Friday, 2 April
    Royal Children's Hospital Good Friday Appeal Display
    Join us in support of the Royal Children's Hospital on 2 April at Sandown Raceway.  We will be selling raffle tickets on the day to raise money, with some great prizes on offer from some of our club sponsors.

    Sunday, 4 April
    Flinders Motoring Heritage Day - DISPLAY ALLOCATION SOLD OUT

    Unfortunately the display is already sold out but we'd love to see you if you have time to drop by and say hello!

    Saturday, 10 April
    April drive day leaving from Berwick BMW
    We'll start our day with breakfast at Berwick BMW.  We'll then head off to Mirboo North via Poowoong for a comfort stop.  We have lunch booked for 1pm at the Grand Ridge Brewery. 

    Tuesday, 13 April
    April Members Meeting | Eastern Tyre Centre
    Eastern Tyre Centre will be arranging for a guest speaker from Continential Tyres to come and speak to us about all things tyres.  We'll also have a brand new set of tyres up for grabs to any members who are present.

    24 - 25 April
    Anzac Day Weekend Away to Mansfield
    On Anzac Weekend we will be heading up to Mansfield area, where we will enjoy some amazing driving roads, lunches at well known wineries and of course remember the fallen on Anzac Day at the Mansfield dawn service.

    Club members have also been invited to BMW Car Club Canberra's Merimbula Getaway and whale watching on 9-10 October, if anyone is interested in joining.

    Be sure to keep an eye on our calendar  for more events.

    NEWS & BLOG 

    Our Blog page on the website is constantly being updated with not just club news, but everything BMW from all around the world!  We welcome you to submit any articles of your own. 

    Club blog.

    BMW around the globe.


    This month we introduce you to Mark Topliss and his Z4.  To read all about Mark's Z4 click here.

    To submit your own car or motorbike for next month, click here.


    Did you know we have a classifieds page

    If you're looking for a 1987 BMW E32 730i, there is currently a white one on our classifieds page.  You can view more details by clicking here.

    Want to sell something?  Email us today to list your car/parts/anything BMW related!

    idrive magazine

    Everyone has their own BMW story - we'd love to share yours.

    Email us to feature in our very own idrive magazine.


    Members are welcome to submit their business to be shared on the Club Partners page on our website and idrive magazine. 

    We believe in supporting those who support us.  If you would like your business listed email us with your details.


    As always - thanks for reading, we look forward to seeing you at an event soon!

    President | Graeme Bell 0407 186 296
    Vice President | 
    Jo Mawson 0412 661 900
    Secretary | 
    Lawrence Glynn 0414 563 290 
    Treasurer |
    Shaaron Glynn

    Proudly supported by:

    All Commercial/All Residential Real Estate
    erwick BMW

    BM Tech

    Creative Custom Cars
    German Auto Haus

    Mornington BMW

    Shannons Insurance
    South Yarra BMW

    Southern BM

    Traction Tyres

    Waverley BMW

    Zagame Autobody

  • 31 Mar 2021 1:28 PM | Anonymous


    Dear Members,

    Welcome to Autumn in Melbourne!

    Summer may be over, but the beautiful Autumn weather is here, and we have been making the most of it and getting out and about as much as we can.

    March started off with our members meeting at Berwick BMW with nearly 100 members and guests attending the night.  It was great to be able to get up close and personal to the new M3 and M4 and also mingle with some of Berwick BMWs customers. It was a fantastic evening and we thank Berwick BMW for inviting us along to help launch Melbourne’s newest dealership.

    7 March was Round 2 of the Traction Tyres/Yokohama Drivers Championship, Round 1 of the Motorsport Australia Interclub Championship and our first Hill Climb at Rob Roy. It was a beautiful day it was with the sun shining and lots of fun was had by all who attended, with everyone improving their times with each run. This was the aim of the day and we all went home very happy.

    In late February we were contacted by Race Chix Motorsport to run a womens come and try day as a part of the Shannons International Women’s Day Festival event at Broadford on 8 March.  As you can imagine with only two weeks’ notice, there was a lot of work to be done, but we pulled it off.  With 27 entrants (25 of which were women) and over 50% female officials on the day, it was a brilliant turnout and a fantastic effort from all of our members that gave of their time to help run the day.  

    We were lucky to be at Broadford on the Sunday night and were invited to the event dinner to listen to Inspirational speaker Jacqui Cooper, 5-time Olympic Freestyle skier, give a truly inspiring talk about her life and just why not to ever give up on your dreams.  If she was selling ice, I think both Jo and I would have bought it on the night.  We are lucky to have Jacqui coming to our presentation dinner on 1 May, so don’t miss out on the chance to be inspired by this amazing woman. 

    14 March was our family day out at Werribee Zoo. We were very lucky to have a brilliant sunny day as the day before was very wet.   Lots of families attended and we had the Chongola privately booked for us so our members could just leave their belongings behind and explore at their leisure and then come back to either cook a BBQ or enjoy a picnic lunch.  We also booked a carriage on the Safari bus for all our members to be together and this did not disappoint, with some very close encounters with a very large Rhino and some very beautiful African animals. 

    16 March was our last mid-week sunset drive for this summer.  This time we departed from Waverley BMW and as usual, Waverly put on a great spread for us before we headed of on a fantastic drive up to the scenic lookout at the top of Mt Dandenong with over 30 cars in procession, in 2 groups of 16.  The drive was amazing even though we did get a bit confused at one point, but we all made it up to the look out to see the spectacular Melbourne city lights.  It was so good to have learner drivers come out again, this makes me so proud that parents feel safe to bring their children on our drives with us. 

    On 26-28 March quite a few of our club members attended E30 Racing Round 2 at Winton, either as drivers, crew or officials.  It was great to see my son Chris return to racing for the first time since he won the E30 Racing Championship in 2018 and fantastic to see Jess out racing again after rolling her car at Sandown in Round 1. I'm very proud of both of them, they both drove very well - Chris finishing second for the weekend and Jess in 8th. BMW Drivers Club Melbourne proudly sponsored the Blend Line live stream coverage of this event and it is not too late to still watch all the action on Blend Line. The E30 Racing Championship is a great next step into motorsport for those that want to go beyond Club track days and step into real racing. It is a great bunch of people to be involved with and we always enjoy the weekends away racing with them. For more information on Club Motorsport or E30 Racing give me a call or send me an email.

    Also, on 28 March we had what would possibly be our last twilight drive for this part of the year, as we are running out of day light, which left from Ceres and ended at Grill’d in Geelong, were most attended the evening meal.  Another great drive was had by all and also another great charity was supported with tokens being given to The Smiths Family from the dinner funds.

    April is going to be a jammed packed month with lots to do and see.

    Easter starts on 2 April and we are holding our annual Good Friday Royal Children’s Hospital Coffee & Cars day.  We are hoping to raise some much-needed funds for this worthy charity.  If you cannot attend on the day, you will find the bank details for any donations you may which to give here, be sure to quote the reference number so it will go to our tally.   All cars and bikes are welcome, BMW and non-BMW, members and non-members, this is our big chance to give so they may live. This year we are holding it on the grass area of Sandown Raceway, known as Red Hill. I’d like to thank Melbourne Racing Club and Sandown for allowing us to have our event there at no cost, so the funds we raise can all go to the Royal Children’s Hospital.

    On 4 April is the Flinders Heritage Car Display, and this event is now full but if you want to come down as a spectator you can still do this, and we would love to see you.  All funds raised by this event goes to local charities and the Lions Club do a brilliant job each year running this fantastic event. We will have a great display again this year and looking forward to seeing all the amazing cars that come out for this event.

    10 April will be our drive day from Berwick BMW heading out to Mirboo North and lunch will be at the Grand Ridge Brewery after some very exciting driving roads, by our drive master Peter Williams.  

    13 April will be our members meeting at Eastern Tyre Centre, with some fantastic raffle prizes and also a guest speaker on the night.  This event is nearly at capacity so don’t miss out.

    17 April was on our calendar as a Winton Driver Training day but unfortunately due to circumstance beyond our control this day has now been cancelled.  We will be having Round 3 of our Traction Tyres/Yokohama Drivers Championship at Winton on April 18, so entries are out don’t miss out as this day books up quickly.

    24/25 April is the Anzac weekend. We are doing a short weekend trip away to Mansfield and we will be attending the dawn service in Mansfield or one of the surrounding towns. We're looking forward to another weekend away with our club family, these are so much fun and to go to a dawn service somewhere different is always worth the effort, to remember those that gave so much so that we can enjoy the life we now lead.

    1 May is our third birthday and presentation dinner which is going to be a great night and would love to see as many of you attending this great night to support all your fellow members who will be presented awards on the night.  This event is being held at the Park Hyatt and if you want to make it a weekend stay, be sure to quote the special discount code when booking your room at the Park Hyatt.

    As you can see, we have a very busy calendar coming for you to enjoy, but if you have anything you’d think we would like to do or see or have a favourite drive you’d like to share, get in touch and let us know. We are always looking for ideas and even people to run events if you like to. Happy to help you get more involved in your club. Keep an eye on the emails and website for all the upcoming events.

    As always, I am very proud to say our membership is still growing, and we are now at 567 and still growing daily.  Let’s see if we can get the club over 600 by our birthday! It truly amazes me that so many have come on board with us and share the passion for what we all do, enjoying our cars and our driving with an awesome bunch of friends. Thank you and welcome to you all.

     I look forward to seeing you somewhere at an event or on the road, until then take care and safe driving.

    Graeme Bell | President
    BMW Drivers Club Melbourne Inc.

    P.O. Box 81, TYABB   VIC   3913
    Incorporated in Victoria #A0102695G
    BMW Drivers Club Melbourne Inc is a member of: BMW Clubs Australia and the BMW Clubs International Council
    Motorsport Australia Affiliated Motorsport Club

  • 31 Mar 2021 12:19 PM | Anonymous

    My Friday started off normal, working away with the goal of finishing early, having a pub lunch and a POETS day. I got a call from a friend who was doing Friday practice at Winton, Alex Jory, he asked me if I was free on the weekend to race in the E30s as another friend, Rod Martin, had to work and had pulled out of the weekends racing. 

    Rod was happy for me to race his car if I was free, but I turned the offer down as it was my son's birthday party on Saturday morning.  The thought of racing grew more and more on me so I rang back and said I’d have to get permission from my son to get the all clear to go racing and miss his party. He said he knows I love racing and that will all of his friends around he wouldn’t notice I wasn’t there, so late Friday night I loaded up Rod's car and headed up to the house where team Bell Motorsport were staying.

    I woke Saturday to the sound of drizzle, thinking it will make qualifying interesting and it did. It was the first time I’d driven Rod's car and it wasn’t handling as well as some of the E30 race cars that I’ve been lucky enough to drive but I'm always up for a challenge. I managed to qualify fifth and was within six tenths of second (Chris Bell smashed the field by 1.1 seconds!).

    It rained just before race 1 which made things tricky for the field but the track was drying each lap and was almost completely dry by the end, I finished where I started.

    Race 2 was early Sunday morning, I got a great start and made a couple of positions on the opening lap and got to third, which I held on to for the rest of the race.

    Race 3 I lost a couple of spots on the opening lap and then had a epic battle with Brian Bourke for the whole race with him passing me just before the last lap.

    I had a great weekend racing with a great bunch of guys and girls, I hope they do the two driver enduro races again later in the year so I can get another steer.

    A huge thanks to Rod Martin for the car and Bell Motorsport for helping to get me strapped  in for each race.

    Thank you also the BMW Drivers Club Melbourne for sponsoring the Blend Line coverage for the weekend.

    Anton Bergman | Member #66
    BMW Drivers Club Melbourne

  • 31 Mar 2021 11:42 AM | Anonymous

    Name: Mark Topliss
    What make is your vehicle? BMW
    What model is your vehicle? Z4
    What year is it? 2005
    Does it have a nickname? Not sure, when I drive the car, Jenni always calls it 'slow down'!
    What engine does it have? 3.0
    What colour is it? Sapphire Black
    When did you purchase it? 02/2020
    Where did you buy it? Private sale
    What attracted you to this particular vehicle? Spec and price
    How have you modified it since purchasing it? Changed the wheels
    Do you work on the car yourself?  If not, where do you get your work done?  Local independents.
    Generally, what do you love about it? Compared to my Z3 it's a better all round package
    If you had to pick one piece of the car that you just love to look at, hear or touch, what would it be and why? An all round nice looking Z4
    Tell us about the best drive you've had in it. When I lived in Regional Victoria, the quiet side roads were a 'blast' and I possibly had the car at the legal max speed limit / limiter perhaps!
    What about the worst drive? Why? Round the city, no tickets for 37 years, then caught doing 65 in a 60!
    Any improvements/modifications/restorations planned? Re-upholster the seats
    In two words, how would you describe it? A blast.
    Is there anything else about your car that is of interest (i.e previous celebrity owner, raced, a show winner, limited number in Australia)? No

    Thanks for sharing with us Mark!  If you'd like to share your car (or motorbike!) with us, click here to submit your car or bike for next month!

  • 31 Mar 2021 9:21 AM | Anonymous

    Event date: 28 March 2021

    Many of us do not need much of an excuse to take our cars out for a drive but sometimes a little encouragement is required. Taking the long way to have something to eat and meet up with fellow members is reason a plenty.

    So that’s what we did on Sunday evening, making a 10 minute drive from Ceres to Grill’d take about 1 hour.

    Finding twisty roads around Geelong is something of a challenge as the terrain is largely flat and the road engineers have taken a leaf from the Roman’s civil engineering book and made the roads as straight and flat as they can. Fortunately there are rivers which roads cross and they throw up a few bends and elevation changes to make things a bit more interesting. The route had some of these elements but the views made up for the lack of g-force excitement.

    What was interesting was the nice mix of cars and the great company. So we all had a good time and enjoyed the evening. As an added bonus we helped to try and boost the fund raising for The Smith Family via Geelong Evening View Club (whose secretary is my wife Shaaron!). Two birds and all that.

    Lawrence Glynn | Member #3
    BMW Drivers Club Melbourne

    It was a lovely evening for a drive around the country back roads of Geelong and a fantastic opportunity to raise money for such a worthwhile organisation Smith Family via Geelong Evening View Club.

    We met at Ceres and set off together, Jenny and Mark nominated to be our “tail end Charlie” for the evening, well done top job guys.

    Weather was perfect and the roads had some curve and there is just about no greater feeling behind the wheel of our beautiful BMWs of such vast array.

    Company was also lovely back at Grill’d with Burgers, chit chat and laughs had by all, especially with Peter’s witty commentary.

    Cate Unsworth | Member #490
    BMW Drivers Club Melbourne

  • 30 Mar 2021 12:49 PM | Anonymous

    The MINI Electric Pacesetter inspired by JCW is the new Safety Car for the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship race series. As such, it connects the brand’s electrified future with the rich racing history of John Cooper Works. The car was created out of the new MINI Cooper SE as part of an unprecedented collaboration between MINI Design, BMW Motorsport, the FIA and the Formula E.

    Electric drive meets John Cooper Works.
    “We have already shown how well driving fun and electric mobility go together with the MINI Electric,” says Bernd Körber, Head of MINI. “However, the MINI Electric Pacesetter inspired by JCW goes at least a step further and blends the performance character of the John Cooper Works brand with electric mobility. This extreme version of the MINI Electric has been developed as the Safety Car for Formula E, so is clearly not intended for use on public roads. But it does reveal one of the directions we could take with the electrification of the JCW brand. For me, the message is clear: electrification and John Cooper Works are a good fit.”

    Dynamism maximised  – the exterior design. 
    The exterior of the MINI Electric Pacesetter inspired by JCW has been purpose-built for life on the track and represents the most dynamic interpretation yet of a MINI with all-electric power. “The design is an exciting symbiosis of technical precision and emotion,” explains Oliver Heilmer, Head of MINI Design. “Here, function dictates form, and many design elements have been shaped by technical considerations. For example, we worked closely with our colleagues at BMW Motorsport to develop the form of the wheel arches and front and rear aprons, and the optimisation programme for them included weight-saving measures. This visually striking, technically precise design language gives the car its pervasive sense of emotional engagement and excitement.”

    At the front of the car, classical MINI icons such as the circular headlights and hexagonal radiator grille create the familiar, easily recognisable MINI face. At the same time, signature John Cooper Works elements, such as wheel arches adapted to the car’s track width and the deep front apron with additional front splitters to the left and right, enhance the sporting visuals of the front end. The blanked off “radiator grille” and MINI Electric logo point to the electric “heart” of the Safety Car. As virtually no drive system cooling is required through the upper area of the grille, the front end is largely enclosed to aid aerodynamics. The only exceptions are the area below the grille and the eye-catching, almost squared-off apertures for brake cooling. The Safety Car’s white flashing lights are integrated harmoniously into the bonnet. Characteristic MINI bonnet stripes extend over the roof to the rear end.

    Showcasing MINI’s racing genes – the flanks.
    The MINI Electric Pacesetter inspired by JCW also cuts an extremely dynamic figure from the side. The interplay of geometrically accentuated spats (with carefully placed aero edges) and sporty side skirts gives the car the appearance of powering forward even before it turns a wheel. Together with the increased-diameter wheels, which almost fill the wheel arches, these elements strengthen the time-honoured MINI “stance on the wheels”. The spats and spoilers are made – or more precisely 3D printed from recycled carbon fibre – in Oxford. Yellow accent lines and surfaces on the aero elements (e.g. the spats, skirts and rear wing) provide a nod to the airflow optimisation taking place in these areas and add a visual flourish to the air deflectors and aero edges. The lightweight 18-inch forged wheels in bi-colour black-neon/orange design bring significant visual depth and added intricacy to the four-spoke items from the MINI John Cooper Works GP.

    The respective colour worlds of the MINI Electric and John Cooper Works brand merge into a single statement here. The main body colour is a matt silver which extends back beyond the centre-point of the car. A high-gloss wrap with a two-stage colour gradient – from Highspeed Orange to Curbside Red met. – then covers the rest of the body to the rear. The contrast between matt and gloss surfaces brings extra smoothness to the silhouette, while the clear, diagonal separation lines between the different colours injects further dynamism. On the flanks, a chequered flag-inspired pattern shares the stage with a large MINI Electric logo, which can also be found in the radiator grille, on the roof and at the rear end. The Safety Car brief also brings regulations-specific and sponsor-related graphics, which add further visual intensity to the car’s racing character.

    Broad and eye-catching – the rear.
    The rear end in black and Curbside Red met. uses yellow accent surfaces to extend the eye-catching design language from the front end and flanks, and makes an extremely modern and dynamic statement. The prominent roof-mounted rear wing with air through-flow and yellow accent lines also integrates the signal light unit and was 3D printed at Plant Oxford. The flared wheel arches accentuate the car’s wide track and transition seamlessly into the pronounced rear apron. The rear apron has cut-outs around the wheels, clearing the view to the higher-grip racing tyres. Between the wheels sits an unadorned diffuser. When the car is viewed from this angle, the accents in Energetic Yellow and lack of exhaust tailpipes identify this as a car powered by an electric drive system.

    Maximum reduction – the interior.
    The interior is stripped back to the absolute essentials; only the front seats remain. The driver’s area consists of a certified seat with six-point belt approved for both racing and road use, a steering wheel with minimalist-design carbon fibre impact absorber and a digital instrument cluster. The central information display makes way for a carbon fibre cover here to further reduce weight. The centre console houses the gearshift lever, handbrake and controls for the necessary signal lights – all in exposed carbon fibre. The likewise pared-back carbon-fibre door panels with window and door openers contain cloth straps to make closing the doors easier. Another central feature of the interior is the welded-in roll cage, which maximises safety. And the remainder of the stripped-out interior structure is also painted in typical racing white (for functional reasons).

    Bespoke 3D-printed parts for the interior.
    The steering wheel’s minimalist impact absorber and the boost panel on the right-hand side of the wheel are high-quality, custom-made components, likewise the centre console cowling and door panelling on the driver’s side. Another highlight are the removable pads on the sport seat, which are likewise 3D-printed and whose innovative structure combines comfort, robustness and modularity. The thickness, hardness and colour of the pads can be adapted as required according to the physiognomy, weight and personal taste of the driver at hand.

    Ready for the racetrack, helped by knowhow from BMW Motorsport.
    Behind the visually powerful design of the MINI Electric Pacesetter inspired by JCW lies the expertise of BMW Motorsport. Rigorous adherence to lightweight design principles gives the Safety Car a kerb weight of approx. 1,230 kg – which makes it approx. 130 kg lighter than the standard MINI Cooper SE. The drive system – also based on that found in the MINI Cooper SE – produces 135 kW and 280 Nm (206 lb-ft), which enables the MINI Electric Pacesetter inspired by JCW to sprint from 0-100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.7 seconds (standard model: 7.3 s) and from 0-60 km/h (37 mph) in 3.6 seconds (standard model: 3.9 s). Even more important for a Safety Car, though, are the mid-range figures. Here, the MINI Electric Pacesetter inspired by JCW showcases all the talents of its torque-rich electric drive system with single-speed transmission, enabling a 80-120 km/h (75 mph) time of 4.3 seconds (standard model: 4.6 s).

    The drive system teams up with racing coilover suspension (three-way adjustable for rebound, compression, height and camber) to deliver maximum go-kart feeling. Race-spec suspension control arm mountings, a 10 mm increase in track width, plus the four-piston brakes and wheels from the MINI John Cooper Works GP with Michelin Pilot Sport tyres (size 245/40 R18) round off the overall package. These are the same tyres fitted to the front wheels of Formula E racing cars.

    Premiere at the Rome E-Prix on 10.04.2021
    The MINI Electric Pacesetter inspired by JCW will see action for the first time in Rome on 10 April 2021 at the second event (Race 3) of Formula E’s 2021 season. At the wheel will be official FIA Formula E Safety Car driver Bruno Correia, as BMW i Andretti Motorsport drivers Maximilian Guenther (GER) and Jake Dennis (GBR) battle it out for victory in their BMW iFE.21 racers.

    “Agility, performance, a cool looking car: the MINI Electric Pacesetter Safety Car for the FIA Formula E World Championship has got it all,” said Correia. “It’s very fun to drive, it feels like karting.”


  • 30 Mar 2021 11:16 AM | Anonymous

    E30 Racing Inc.
    Photographs by Ribbit Photography

    Thanks to everyone who attended Round 2 at Winton, we had a great grid of cars, so thanks to everyone who signed up - and special thanks to all who chipped in to keep the numbers up:

    • Jeremy Payne had a mechanical issue after practice - thanks to all who helped out with parts and labour to undertake substantial repairs to get him on the grid for Race 1. A brilliant team effort.
    • Rod Martin sadly wasn't able to make it up for the event - thanks to everyone who made the arrangements for Anton Bergman to step in and steer the car beautifully, enjoying some great battles throughout the weekend.
    • An unfortunate spin for Paul Shiff left the #54 Red Rocket with substantial front right damage - after a late night of driving and labour, the car was on the grid again for Race 2 the following morning.

    This team spirit and camaraderie in the paddock is what grass roots motorsport, and E30 Racing in particular, is all about.

    In addition to the great racing and cooperation in the paddock, we also enjoyed a great team BBQ on Saturday night; thanks to the Bell Motorsport team for hosting, and new member Dean Coutts for your contribution.

    Many thanks to our Round Sponsor, BMW Drivers Club Melbourne, whose contribution ensured we could stream our events live on Blend Line TV - visit their website to catch the action if you missed it!

    It was great to welcome Coutts to the grid in the red #11, as well as welcoming back Payne, Chris Bell, Simon Shiff, and especially Jess Bell following her accident at Sandown - thanks to Sean Bell for the use of the 2014-16 championship-winning car.


    With the returning 2019 champ Payne stuck in the pits with the #43 Avis car undergoing repairs, it was the 2018 BMW Driver's Cup champion Chris Bell in the #29 Bell Motorsport / BMWDCM machine who took pole, on his first E30 Racing event since sealing that crown.

    The orange #22 of Jory was speedy from day one, and joined Chris Bell on the front row, with Simon Shiff, in the stunning #55 Red Rocket Racing car, starting the weekend brilliantly with a scorching lap for P3, making up for missing Round 1 at Sandown.

    Race 1

    After a brief downpour that had everyone scrambling to check tyre pressures, we got underway on wet but drying track, with a dry racing line developing throughout the race, making overtaking difficult... but not for Jeremy Payne, starting from the rear after being unable to qualify.

    Alex Jory set the pace, and Brian Bourke got past Chris Bell into P2. While Payne made his way through the field, Bourke began closing the gap on Jory. Meanwhile, Bergman got to grips beautifully with Rod Martin's #40 car as well as the changing conditions.

    Bourke caught up with Jory, but an unfortunate tangle left the door open for Chris Bell to sweep through to take the win, with Payne coming home in P2 - a great effort - while Bourke recovered to take P3.

    While hassling the debutant Coutts, a spin and collision for Paul Shiff at turn 12 left him stranded in the infield, while the #7 of Plant limped away to DNF after making contact with the spinning Shiff.

    Race 2

    Having carved through the field in Race 1, Payne was on a roll, and took a commanding win, his first of the season. Chris Bell had another strong finish, coming home P2, ahead of Bergman, who battled brilliantly with veterans Bourke and Bowles, who finished in that order. Jory lost positions at the start (future note to self - you can't start a race in third gear), and battled through the midfield to take P6.

    Mike Bailey had an engine issue just before the race, so couldn't make the start, and thus missed out on some great dicing further down the order. Simon Leach finished P7, ahead of Harry Walker, Simon Shiff, Jess Bell, Plant, Paul Shiff, Coutts, and Darryl O'Neill.

    Race 3

    Payne led from the front ahead of Chris Bell, but Jory was on a mission to recover some round points, so Chris Bell relinquished P2 so the orange #22 could give chase.

    Outside the podium places, Bowles stayed ahead of a brilliant exchange between Bourke and Bergman, with the #27 Transrock car of Bourke finishing on top after several laps of entertaining racing.

    Further back, the Simons found themselves battling for position, and got too close at turn 12, with light contact spinning Leach in front of the chasing pack. Thankfully, no major damage resulted, and the cars of Plant, Walker, Jess Bell and Bailey safely made their way past to record solid midfield finishes.

    A great end to the weekend, with all cars finishing Race 3, lots of smiles in the garage, and everyone keen to hit the track again at Phillip Island in May.

    Full Results and Championship Standings are now published on our website.

    Stay tuned for entry details for Round 3 of the 2021 Garagistic BMW Driver's Cup, let's get another solid grid together!

    E30 Racing Inc.

  • 25 Mar 2021 12:43 PM | Anonymous

    Technology upgrade for the midsize scooters.

    With the C 400 X in 2017 and the C 400 GT in 2018, BMW Motorrad presented two premium vehicles for the midsize scooter segment for the first time. Since then, the C 400 X has been impressing Urban Mobility segment customers with its dynamic ride characteristics, while the C 400 GT, as a Gran Turismo variant suitable for touring, stands out thanks to its enhanced range of comfort features. To make sure that this remains the case in the future too, BMW Motorrad has now upgraded the two midsize scooters and, in addition to some significant technical optimisations, has also given them new colours and styles.

    Powerful single-cylinder engine according to EU-5 homologation with E-gas, new engine management and optimised centrifugal clutch.

    As before, the proven efficiency-optimised single-cylinder engine with an output of 25 kW (34 hp) at 7 500 rpm and a torque of 35 Nm at 5 750 rpm serves as the drive unit. Power transmission is via a CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) gearbox and a torsionally stiff drivetrain swing arm with innovative swing arm bearing for minimum vibration and therefore maximum comfort. Thanks to current EU 5 homologation, the new C 400 X and C 400 GT remain the ideal partners for dynamic, carefree scooter fun.

    For this reason the engine has been equipped with a so-called "electronic throttle grip" (E-gas) and an electrically operated throttle valve as well as a new engine management system. Further optimisations are a modified matrix and coating of the catalytic converter, a wideband oxygen sensor, modifications to the cylinder head, a new sensor on the generator cover, an adapted wiring harness and modified idle speed control. The idle speed regulator in the airbox has been omitted and the idle speed control is now carried out via a throttle valve bypass and a turbulence system.

    In addition to complying with EU-5 homologation, the revised drive impresses riders above all with an even smoother and more sensitive throttle response as well as increased idling stability. In addition to E-gas and new engine management, the optimised springs for the centrifugal clutch also contribute to increasing engine running stability. The tolerance of the spring force was limited, the spring force was slightly increased and the engine speed was slightly raised as the clutch re-engages. Due to the reduced tolerances, the spread of the speed when disengaging the clutch is smaller and belated opening of the clutch - as occasionally known from the predecessor - no longer occurs.

    Automatic Stability Control (ASC) with automatic radius calibration and increased regulation quality. Homologation of the full top speed now also for China.

    In the course of the technical revision, the new C 400 X and C 400 GT also received an optimised ASC. Instead of the previous manual recalibration - for example when changing tyres - the new system now has an automatic radius calibration. In addition, the new ASC is designed for significantly lower friction values than before. When riding, this is noticeable in a more sensitive response and significantly increased regulation comfort - especially on wet and slippery surfaces. Deactivating ASC is now no longer necessary.

    Until now, the two vehicles were homologated for the Chinese market for a speed of 129 km/h. The legal requirements in China have changed and so it has now become possible to homologate the full top speed of 139 km/h there as in the other markets.

    Brake system with new front brake calipers and adjusted lever travel of front and rear brakes. Storage compartment with optimised lighting and USB charging socket.

    The brake system of the new C 400 X and C 400 GT has also been revised. Thanks to new brake calipers, the double-disc brake system at the front now offers a more stable and clearly defined pressure point as well as improved roll-back behaviour of the brake pistons. This is accompanied by aligned lever travels for the rear brake on the left and the front brake on the right for a symmetrical braking feel.

    The optimised lighting of the storage compartment (volume 31 l, 45 l with Flexcase) under the seat bench improves comfort significantly. The lighting now no longer comes from the side, but from above for even better illumination. In addition to the 12-volt onboard socket, the front right storage compartment is now equipped with a USB charging socket.

    Two new attractive colours each as well as the style variants "Sport" (C 400 X) and "Triple Black" (C 400 GT).

    As before the new BMW C 400 X and C 400 GT also feature the unmistakable design language of BMW Motorrad. Modern and future-oriented looks reflect the BMW Motorrad design philosophy perfectly. The new midsize scooters from BMW Motorrad are each offered in three different colour variants.

    C 400 X.

    • Base paint finish Blackstorm metallic.
    • Optional Granite Grey metallic paint finish (+ 50.00 €).
    • Style Sport (Blackstorm metallic/Racingblue metallic matt, + € 200.00).
    C 400 GT.
    • Base paint finish Alpine White.
    • Optional Kallisto Grey metallic paint finish (+ 50.00 €).
    • Style Triple Black (Blackstorm metallic with matt tapes, + 200.00 €).

    All new features of the BMW C 400 X and C 400 GT at a glance:
    • Powerful single-cylinder drive according to EU-5 homologation with E-gas, new engine management and optimised centrifugal clutch.
    • Optimised idling behaviour.
    • Automatic Stability Control (ASC) with automatic radius calibration and increased regulation quality.
    • Brake system with new front brake calipers, clearly defined pressure point and adjusted lever travel of front and rear brakes.
    • Seat storage compartment with optimised lighting and USB charging socket in the front right storage compartment.
    • Two new attractive colours each as well as the style variants "Sport" (C 400 X) and "Triple Black" (C 400 GT).


  • 24 Mar 2021 12:39 PM | Anonymous

    2021 is the final year in the development phase of the BMW M4 GT3, due to do battle for wins and titles in GT races around the world for BMW M Motorsport teams as of 2022. The new flagship in the BMW M Motorsport portfolio of cars has been taking part in testing weeks at the Spanish racetracks of Monteblanco and Almeria since the start of the year and in doing so has rung in the crucial stage ahead of the initial race appearances.

    2021 is the final year in the development phase of the BMW M4 GT3, due to do battle for wins and titles in GT races around the world for BMW M Motorsport teams as of 2022. The new flagship in the BMW M Motorsport portfolio of cars has been taking part in testing weeks at the Spanish racetracks of Monteblanco and Almeria since the start of the year and in doing so has rung in the crucial stage ahead of the initial race appearances. Covering more than 12,000 kilometres already – which equates to more than 60 hours on the track – numerous BMW drivers have worked extremely hard on drivability and reliability, the objective being to significantly reduce the lifecycle costs and maintenance effort compared with the predecessor model. The close collaboration between BMW M Motorsport and the series developers at BMW M GmbH, as well as making use of the BMW Group’s testing facilities, both make an important contribution to the progress of the BMW M4 GT3.

    The test drives at Almeria (ESP) last week represented another milestone in the development of the BMW M4 GT3, with successful endurance runs and race simulations. Martin Tomczyk, Jens Klingmann (both GER) and Nick Yelloly (GBR) took turns at the wheel, and these are just three of the many experienced BMW drivers who have already contributed to the optimisation of the car. Others include Augusto Farfus (BRA), Marco Wittmann (GER), Bruno Spengler (CAN), Sheldon van der Linde (RSA) and Jesse Krohn (FIN). In addition to endurance runs, the focus at Almeria was mainly on testing tyres of various brands.

    In a direct comparison with its predecessor, the BMW M6 GT3, the BMW M4 GT3 is already showing considerable improvements in crucial areas at this stage of development, namely the reduction of lifecycle costs and maintenance effort, as well as drivability for professional and amateur racing drivers, both in dry conditions and in the rain. Easy handling of the BMW M4 GT3 is the top priority – for both drivers and the team at the track. The BMW M Motorsport engineers have made a breakthrough. For the first time, it is possible to change most electronic settings in the car, without having to connect it to a laptop. Last-minute changes to control systems or sensors can be made via the multifunction steering wheel, making it much quicker and easier to make changes.

    “There was a really good atmosphere among us drivers during the last test drives because we were able to complete a lot of laps and we all agree that the BMW M4 GT3 is a lot of fun,” said Klingmann at the end of the week of testing at Almeria. “It is very easy and consistent to drive, which has a positive effect on tyre wear and we made progress with the development of lots of systems. Naturally, there are still lots of things to sort out, but the question marks are consistently being replaced with exclamation marks.”

    “Since I had only driven the car in the wet once before, the Almeria test was like a first for me,” said Tomczyk. “We were really well prepared, and everything went fantastically with very few exceptions. I also really enjoy driving the car. I’m feeling very positive.”

    Yelloly said: “As someone who has competed in a lot of races in the BMW M6 GT3 in recent years, I noticed right away just how big a leap forward the BMW M4 GT3 will be. We tested both performance and consistency, and practiced pit stops and performed system checks. The BMW M4 GT3 drove well on all tyre brands that we tried out so I’m very confident looking ahead to future race appearances. I can’t wait to get started.”

    In addition to the testing at the racetrack, which BMW Team RMG will continue intensively during the course of the year and will supplement with initial test races, the close collaboration between BMW M Motorsport and colleagues in series development in Munich (GER) plays a crucial role. BMW Group uses various test benches for the whole car as well as components, for example, to measure performance, vibrations, efficiency and roll resistance. The BMW M4 GT3 has undergone tests on the engine test bench and the roller test bench and intensive work has been done in the wind tunnel and climate tunnel.

    Testing also took place in the BMW Group’s acoustics tunnel this week, to advance the noise measuring tuning and silencer development with noise emissions for the BMW M4 GT3. This cutting-edge tunnel can do much more. In series operation, some of its other uses include sound development and tuning driving noises and interior noises.

    Testing of the BMW M4 GT3 is set to continue with further sessions in April and May.


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