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BMW Drivers Club Melbourne

  • 1 Mar 2023 2:00 PM | Anonymous

     Month in review.

    Dear members, 

    As we farewell summer we look back on the month that was February. It may have been a short month, but there were plenty of things happening to keep us all busy.

    Our month started at the Bathurst 12 Hour. We were also joined by members from NSW, Canberra and the Gold Coast clubs. It was great to see the BMWs back on the grid and be treated to a garage and pit tour of the BMW team. 


    7 February was our February members meeting at SEA Electric. Those who attended were fascinated by all of the information Glen had to share about their work. It's really inspiring to see some of our members leading the way in electric truck technology.


    11 February was our pre-Torquay Motor Show drive, many of our members also stayed over for the Motor Show the following day, giving everyone the chance to enjoy some dinner on the Saturday night.


    12 February was of course the Torquay Motor Show. We always enjoy this display, and were very pleased to see one of our members, David Pye, take out the 'best car on the day' award, even though he didn't have a BMW!


    On 12 February we also had our second round of the Traction Tyres/Yokohama Drivers Championship at Sandown. The day started a little drizzly before turning into a beautiful sunny afternoon. It was really nice to see so many members attend in support of those driving on the day.


    19 February was our annual family fun day, this year at Enchanted Maze, Arthurs Seat. We hired a party pavilion so that our members had a base to come and go from. There were activities for everyone from searching through mazes to tube slides!


    22 February was our mid-week twilight drive. This time we were in the Geelong area, enjoying a drive and dinner at the Meredith Royal Hotel.


    24 February was our monthly catch up with the BMW team in Munich, where we were given an update on BMW Classic and their plans for 2023. These events are growing in popularity each month, which is great to see.


    26 February was our final event for the month, where we attended the AOMC British and European Car Show at Caribbean Gardens. Between us and the other Victorian BMW Club, it was nice to have so many BMWs on display. There was something for everyone, from early 60’s to modern cars for the crowd to enjoy.



    Welcome to our new members Deborah Maxwell-Wright, Chas Christodoulides, Tibi Varga, David Beal, Terry House, Harnish Panchal, Ronald Whitehead, James Ruiz, Ben Grice, Shaun Lynch, Cameron Dwight, Qiqin Yu and Werner Ihle. 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.

    The month ahead.

    Here's what we've got planned for March:

    Tuesday, 7 March
    Simulator Challenge Round 2 - Sponsored by Shannons
    There are still a couple of spots left to register to compete in round 2 of our simulator challenge!

    Saturday-Sunday, 11-12 March
    Phillip Island Classic Festival of Speed Car Display
    Join us for our annual display at the Phillip Island Classic Festival of Speed. You can attend one or both days and will receive discounted entry as part of the display. 

    Friday-Sunday, 17-19 March
    BMW Clubs Australia Nationals 2023 - Gold Coast

    Registrations are now closed. We hope those who are attending have a fantastic time!

    Thursday, 23 March
    Twilight Drive - Westerfolds Park - St Andrews - Coldstream
    We'll start at Westerfolds Park for a catch up, sausage and cold drink, before heading off through some beautiful driving roads, to hopefully watch the sunset in Coldstream. 

    Wednesday-Sunday, 29 March - 2 April
    Formula 1 Grand Prix Display
    Registrations are now closed and the event itself is sold out. We hope those attending have a fantastic time! 

    Friday, 31 March
    BMW Club Community Management Team live from Munich
    The March BCCM Live Session will feature a presentation of the new additions to the collection.

    One event for later in the year to put in your calendar now is German Auto Show. Those that attended last year will remember the huge success of the event, which we aim to repeat again in 2023. The 2023 German Auto Show will be held on 27 August at Calder Park. Click here for full details and registration.

    Be sure to keep an eye on our calendar to stay up to date with our events.

    If you're attending a social drive or weekend away, we recommend checking out our event tips to help you get the best out of the event.



    If you attend any of our events and take high resolution photos that you would like to share with other members and for use on our website and in our newsletter and magazine, please send a link to your photos to so we can add them to our photo gallery.

    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.

      Wine Fundraiser.

      Last year BMWDCM set up a fundraising project with "Personalize Your Wine" to be able to offer our members a keepsake for winning 2021 International Club of the Year.

      All funds raised through purchase of the bottles will be donated to the Royal Children's Hospital Good Friday Appeal.

      If you haven't already placed an order but would like to, you can do so here.

      Get behind your club and a great charity.

      From the Welfare Team.

      "If you don’t leave your past in the past, it will destroy your future. You have got to live for what today is offering, not for what yesterday took away from you."

      Click here for more Welfare Team updates and their contact details.


      Have you seen our classifieds page

      Want to sell something?  Looking for a specific item?  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.

      BMWDCM Membership Promotion.

      The following winners were drawn at 7.35pm on 9 January 2023:

      • First prize: Thomas Schneider
      • Second prize: Garry Pakenham
      • Third prize: Souhail Raydan
      • Fourth prize: Andrew Wallace
      • Fifth prize: Nick Benassi
      • Sixth prize: Reece Todd
      • Seventh prize: Simon Bartaby
      • Eighth prize: Tynan Corbett

      Congratulations to the winners!

      We would like to thank those sponsors who kindly provided prizes for the competition. 
      The full competition Ts&Cs can be viewed here

      Club partners.

      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 290null 
      Treasurer |
      Shaaron Glynn

      Cover photo: Jess Bell

      Proudly supported by:

      All Commercial / All Residential Real Estate
      Berwick BMW
      BM Tech
      German Auto Haus
      Kalus Kenny Intelex
      Melbourne BMW
      Mornington BMW
      Shannons Insurance
      Shepparton BMW
      South Yarra BMW

      Southern BM
      Traction Tyres
      Waverley BMW

    • 28 Feb 2023 5:00 PM | Anonymous

      Dear members,  

      I hope you are all well.

      We started February with a large group of BMW enthusiast and members travelling to Bathurst for the Bathurst 12 hour.  It was great to see BMW back at the mountain again this year and to see so many BMW shirts walking around the paddock.

      We were lucky to have members from BMW clubs from Melbourne, NSW, Canberra and Gold Coast join us at the event. Thanks to Jo we also enjoyed a tour of the BMW garages and got up close to the drivers and the cars.

      We are looking at doing a private suite next year so watch this space.

      7 February was our February members meeting at SEA Electric which was absolutely fascinating. It was a brilliant turnout and it was wonderful to see so many members just so enthralled by Glen’s commentary. Thank you again the Margaret and Warren Fairweather for putting on this night and for the lovely nibbles. All went away very knowledgeable and well fed. Just amazing that this growing Aussie business is leading the world in electric trucks and even better that they are building them here!

      11 February was our pre-Torquay Motor Show drive. It was nice to see lots of people staying over ready for the event the next day. It was also great to be able to share a meal and chat with our members from the other side of the bay.

      12 February of course was the Torquay Motor Show. We always have a fantastic display here and it was even better when one of our members taking out best car on the day, sadly not a BMW but still one of our members, so well-done David Pye and his beautiful Mercedes AMG Black even if it is orange!

      On 12 February we also had our second round of our Traction Tyres/Yokohama Drivers Championship at Sandown. There was a little bit of drizzle in the morning and then the sun came out for the rest of day. Thank you to all the members who just came along to support the others competing on the day.

      On 17 February two of our club’s members did their OLT (Observed License Test) at Sandown and I was one of the Testing Observers. I am happy to say, even through the sweltering heat they both passed. Congratulations to them both. Well done Adam and Jesse, you now have a licence to spend more money on motorsport!

      19 February was our annual family fun day, this year at Enchanted Maze, Arthurs Seat. It was another beautiful day and the weather being perfect. We hired a party pavilion so that our members had a base to come and go from. We were exhausted after walking so may kilometres and dragging tubes up and day the hill for the tube slides, but it was again great to see so many families out and enjoying club life.

      22 February was our mid-week twilight drive and this time we left from the Geelong area. It was fantastic to see so many members out mid-week and again enjoying some great Melbourne weather and then a nice social night for dinner.

      24 February was our monthly catch up with the BMW team in Munich. These nights are always informative and great for our members to be able to chat with the staff in Munich via the chat option on the link. The events are certainly gaining more popularity, which is nice to see.

      26 February was our last event for the month. February being and a short month, but not short on events to keep us busy. This is the first time the AOMC British and European Car Show was held at Caribbean Gardens. We parked beside the other Victorian BMW Club and it was great to have so many BMWs from both clubs there. Everything from early 60’s to current cars for the crowd to enjoy.

      Looking ahead, March is here and we have a full month ahead of us.

      7 March is Round 2 of the Shannons Simulator Challenge. There are still spots available and even if you are not wanting to compete, pop by and cheer on the competitors. It is a lot of fun, and we would love your support behind this event.

      11-12 March will be a big weekend with the Phillip Island Historic Car Display. We have a huge response for this event so far but still have room for more registrants. Get your entries in now to not miss out. Also if you are attending on Saturday you will be able to do parade laps of the track see details here.

      17-19 March is the BMW Clubs Australia Nationals Hosted by BMW Car Club Gold Coast. Bookings for this event has now closed and it is looking like being a great event. Watch out for photos from us on Facebook.

      On 23 March we have our last twilight drive before the end of daylight savings, starting from Westerfolds Park in Templestowe. This is a great location, and we will be starting off with a sausage sizzle and then heading off in a group to enjoy the sun set.

      29 March - 2 April is the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix. This year we will have 30 cars on display so make sure you come by and check out our display area.

      Some other events to put in your calendar:

      • 7 April - Royal Children’s Hospital good Friday Appeal Coffee and Wheels. (all welcome, any makes of cars, bikes all brands)
      • 22 April - Anzac Long Weekend Away – Silo Tour
      • 6 May – Our fifth birthday and presentation dinner
      • 2 June - Kings Birthday South Australia 10 day tour (a shorter version will be also available just for the long weekend)
      • 9 July - Christmas in July – Phillip Island
      • 27 August - German Auto Show (this will be huge)
      • 23-24 November - Challenge Bathurst (a group of 55 this year)
      • 10 December - Christmas Show and Shine and Family Picnic

      These are just a few of the larger events we have already up and ready for your entry. German Auto Show should be released within the next week or so, look out for that. We will be needing volunteers again as we are anticipating this to be much bigger that previous years. It is also great that we will be hosting at this event the 100 years of the BMW Motorcycles and R32 celebration and BMW Motorcycle Club Vic will be holding their display with us on the day.

      BMWDCM have been given a great deal with the West Waters at Caroline Springs for any members who would like to stay the night before or after this event, so please go to this link and make your booking. We also have other hotels which are part of this group who will be offering our members great discounts on your stays with them so be sure to keep an eye on our members area of the website for information on that.

      Both Jo and I have been working with BMWMCCV (Motorcycles Victoria) over the last year to get them more involved with joint events with us and we are happy to say that we have had a few already and look forward to having them join us at a few more. We offer a huge welcome to all their members.

      We have a sale on at the moment with two of our summer polos being reduced by 50%, so be sure to visit our online store to place your orders. There is limited stock so get in early to avoid missing out.

      Remember when your club registration is due, PLEASE do not leave it to a day before it expires then call us panicking that you need a signature. You receive it at least two months before it is due, and it is your responsibility to get it to us in plenty of time. We are all volunteers so you have to fit in with our schedules and sometimes if you just turn up at the club rooms we may not even be there. It is important to call and check first before driving down.

      Vic roads also offer an online process which we have had operating for over a year now and this is working great. You complete the necessary form and forward to and it is then returned to you within a few days. Again, this is not a guaranteed immediate return as again, we are volunteers, and we could be busy or away. It is imperative you give us plenty of time to get your paperwork back to you.

      All new applications must be made by appointment.

      On a health matter both Shaaron and Jo are heading off to hospital to have various body parts replaced this month, Shaaron with her knees and Jo with her right shoulder, so please be patient as things will be a little slower while they are both out of action.

      Jo has been working very hard to get at least the first half of the year up on the website with events and most of the other half of the year is pretty much nearly completed too. She has done an amazing job to do so, so thank you Jo.

      Please also check out the Carbon Offset Scheme. Sign up and help offset your carbon output. It is a great initiative and very proud that we were involved in getting this up and running.

      We would like to thank all the sponsors and advertisers who supported our Members Award Program. Please see below the sponsors and winners.

      • All Commercial Real Estate
      • Mota Team Australia
      • Benzina Magazine
      • Auto Cache
      • Jay Lenos Garage
      • All Marque Storage
      • Eastern Tyres
      • Bell Motorsport
      • Traction Tyres

      We would like to congratulate the eight lucky winners:

      • Thomas Schneider
      • Garry Pakenham
      • Souhail Raydan
      • Andrew Wallace
      • Nick Benassi
      • Reece Todd
      • Simon Bartaby
      • Tynan Corbett

      On another point, we are really grateful to the members who are volunteering to help with the different aspects of the club. One area we would like to cover is videographer, we would like to set up a YouTube channel with videos of the club’s events and get more information out to new and current members regarding what we are up to. If you have skills and time in this area, please contact us for a chat.

      We are happy to say that we now have some Facebook series captains, E30, E36, E31 and we need a few more, again, chat to us about it if you are interested. If this is something you feel is up your alley, please let us know and we can set this up on Facebook and make you a group moderator.

      What will this entail to be a captain, basically as much or as little as you wish. Holding the odd meet up with your series at a coffee shop on a weekend, making sure the content on the Facebook page is up to standard and not breaching any of our social media rules, helping with technical advice or directing the member to the appropriate areas to find this, that sort of thing. It does not need to be a full time job, just a casual group who get to meet up from time to time and chat about all things BMW. Occasionally we do get a call out from BMW Head office for a specific type of car, so this is where these groups will work, being able to just target a small group rather than the whole club.

      Our Welfare team is also quietly working away in the background and helping out where required. If you need anything at all, please get in touch with one of the Welfare Team.

      We are off to a fantastic start to what will be an amazingly busy year, I look forward to seeing you at an event somewhere soon.

      Graeme Bell | President
      BMW Drivers Club Melbourne Inc.

      PO 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

    • 27 Feb 2023 7:44 PM | Anonymous

      +++ Important next phase: pilot vehicles in real-world use deliver valuable knowledge +++ Paving the way for potential series production +++

      The BMW Group is presenting international media representatives with the first vehicles in a pilot fleet that will go into service this year. After four years of development work, the BMW iX5 Hydrogen vehicle and development project is entering its critical next phase.

      The fleet of under 100 vehicles will then be employed internationally for demonstration and trial purposes for various target groups. This active driving experience will therefore be the first chance for people not involved in the development process to gain a direct impression of what the BMW iX5 Hydrogen has to offer.

      “Hydrogen is a versatile energy source that has a key role to play in the energy transition process and therefore in climate protection. After all, it is one of the most efficient ways of storing and transporting renewable energies”, said Oliver Zipse, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG. “We should use this potential to also accelerate the transformation of the mobility sector. Hydrogen is the missing piece in the jigsaw when it comes to emission-free mobility. One technology on its own will not be enough to enable climate-neutral mobility worldwide.”

      The BMW iX5 Hydrogen.

      The BMW iX5 Hydrogen developed on the basis of the current BMW X5 was first unveiled as a concept at the IAA show in 2019. Initial prototypes were then made available at the IAA Mobility 2021 for visitors to experience in action as shuttle vehicles.

      Its hydrogen fuel cell system is further proof of the BMW Group’s leading development expertise in the field of electric drive technologies. The BMW Group is systematically pushing forward with development of hydrogen fuel cell technology as an additional option for locally emission-free individual mobility in the future.

      BMW’s technological expertise.

      The BMW Group produces the highly efficient fuel cell systems for the pilot fleet at its in-house competence centre for hydrogen in Munich. This technology is one of the core elements in the BMW iX5 Hydrogen and generates a high continuous output of 125 kW/170 hp.

      A chemical reaction takes place in the fuel cell between gaseous hydrogen from the tanks and oxygen from the air. Maintaining a steady supply of both elements to the fuel cell’s membrane is of crucial importance for the drive system’s efficiency. In addition to the technological equivalents of features found on combustion engines, such as charge air coolers, air filters, control units and sensors, the BMW Group also developed special hydrogen components for its new fuel cell system. These include the high-speed compressor with turbine and high-voltage coolant pump, for instance.

      The BMW Group sources the individual fuel cells from the Toyota Motor Corporation. The two companies have enjoyed a partnership characterised by trust for many years and have been collaborating on fuel cell drive systems since 2013.

      Fuel cell systems are manufactured in two main steps, based on the individual fuel cells. The cells are first assembled into a fuel cell stack. The next step involves fitting all the other components to produce a complete fuel cell system.

      Stacking of the fuel cells is largely a fully automated process. Once the individual components have been inspected for any damage, the stack is compressed by machine with a force of five tonnes and placed in a housing. The stack housing is manufactured in the light metal foundry at BMW Group Plant Landshut using a sand casting technique.

      For this, molten aluminium is poured into a mould made from compacted sand mixed with resin in a process specially designed for this small-series vehicle.

      The pressure plate, which delivers hydrogen and oxygen to the fuel cell stack, is made from cast plastic parts and light-alloy castings, also from the Landshut plant. The pressure plate forms a gas-tight and water-tight seal around the stack housing.

      Final assembly of the fuel cell stacks includes a voltage test along with extensive testing of the chemical reaction within the cells. Finally, all the different components are fitted together in the assembly area to produce the complete system.

      During this system assembly stage, further components are fitted, such as the compressor, the anode and cathode of the fuel-cell system, the high-voltage coolant pump and the wiring harness.

      In combination with a highly integrated drive unit using fifth-generation BMW eDrive technology (the electric motor, transmission and power electronics are grouped together in a compact housing) at the rear axle and a power battery with lithium-ion technology developed specially for this vehicle, the powertrain channels maximum output of 295kW / 401 hp onto the road. In coasting overrun and braking phases, the motor also serves as a generator, feeding energy back into a power battery.

      Production at Munich pilot plant.

      The BMW iX5 Hydrogen is being built in the BMW Group’s pilot plant at its Research and Innovation Centre (FIZ) in Munich. This is the interface between development and production where every new model from the company’s brands is made for the first time. Around 900 people work there in the body shop, assembly, model engineering, concept vehicle construction and additive manufacturing.

      They are tasked with ensuring that both the product and the manufacturing process are ready for series production. In the case of the BMW iX5 Hydrogen, specialists in hydrogen technology, vehicle development and initial assembly of new models have been working closely together to integrate the cutting-edge drive and energy storage technology.

      Hydrogen allows rapid re-fuelling.

      The hydrogen needed to supply the fuel cell is stored in two 700-bar tanks made of carbon-fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP). Together these hold almost six kilograms of hydrogen, enough to give the BMW iX5 Hydrogen a range of 504 km (313 miles) in the WLTP cycle. Filling up the hydrogen tanks only takes three to four minutes – so the BMW iX5 Hydrogen can also provide the driving pleasure for which BMW is renowned over long distances, with just a few, short stops along the way.

      Summary of the technical data, performance, fuel consumption and range figures for the BMW iX5 Hydrogen:

      Maximum output of overall drive system: 295 kW/401 hp
      Electric continuous output of the fuel-cell system: 125 kW/170 hp
      Maximum output of the battery (lithium-ion technology): 170 kW/231 hp
      Maximum output of the highly integrated electric drive unit: 295 kW/401 hp
      Capacity of the hydrogen tanks: 6 kg hydrogen (gaseous)
      Acceleration: 0-100 km/h (62 mph) < 6 s
      Top speed: Over 180 km/h (112 mph)
      Hydrogen consumption in the WLTP cycle: 1.19 kg/100 km
      Range in the WLTP cycle: 504 km (313 miles)

      FCEV technology contributes to decarbonisation.

      The BMW Group is the first German carmaker to have joined the “Business Ambition for 1.5°C campaign” led by the Science Based Targets initiative and is committed to achieving the goal of full climate neutrality throughout the value chain.

      The next step in this process involves the BMW Group’s plan to reduce CO2 emissions per vehicle over its full lifecycle – i.e. supply chain, production and use phase – by at least 40 per cent by 2030 compared with 2019.

      The BMW Group sold more than 215,000 fully electric vehicles worldwide in 2022, which represents an increase over the previous year of almost 108 per cent. Fully electric vehicles accounted for just under 9 per cent of total sales volumes last year, and this share is set to increase to 15 per cent in 2023.

      By 2030 at the latest, the BMW Group is looking to reach a situation where fully electric vehicles claim a more than 50 per cent share of its overall sales.

      The BMW Group views FCEV technology expressly as a potential addition to the drive technology used by battery-electric vehicles.

      Hydrogen as part of global activities for CO2-free mobility.

      According to a report by the International Energy Agency (IEA), hydrogen offers considerable potential as a future energy source in connection with global energy transition activities. Thanks to its storage and transport capabilities, hydrogen can be used for a wide variety of applications.

      Most industrialised countries are therefore adopting hydrogen strategies and backing them up with roadmaps and concrete projects. In the transport sector, hydrogen can become a further technology option, alongside battery-electric mobility, for shaping sustainable individual mobility in the long term.

      However, this will depend on competitive production of sufficient quantities of hydrogen from green power, as well as expansion of the corresponding filling infrastructure, which is already being intensively pursued in many countries.

      The BMW Group welcomes and supports activities to promote innovation in Germany and Europe that will help build a hydrogen economy and accelerate production of green hydrogen. These specifically include the large-scale hydrogen projects classified as Important Projects of Common European Interest (IPCEI).

      The projects that comprise this European Union initiative, supported in Germany by the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Federal Ministry of Transport, span the entire value chain – from hydrogen production to transport to applications in industry.

      With the right conditions, hydrogen fuel cell technology has the potential to become a further pillar in the BMW Group’s drive train portfolio for local CO2-free mobility.


    • 26 Feb 2023 2:39 PM | Anonymous

      BMW M Team WRT claimed win number two in its third race with the BMW M4 GT3. Sheldon van der Linde (RSA), Dries Vanthoor and Charles Weerts (both BEL) triumphed in the #32 BMW M4 GT3 at the Kyalami 9 Hour (RSA), the second race of this season’s Intercontinental GT Challenge (IGTC).

      BMW M Team WRT claimed win number two in its third race with the BMW M4 GT3. Sheldon van der Linde (RSA), Dries Vanthoor and Charles Weerts (both BEL) triumphed in the #32 BMW M4 GT3 at the Kyalami 9 Hour (RSA), the second race of this season’s Intercontinental GT Challenge (IGTC). This was van der Linde’s second victory at his home race, having also achieved the feat in 2020. The number 33 car, with drivers Philipp Eng (AUT), Augusto Farfus (BRA) and Maxime Martin (BEL), came home second to make it a one-two for the team.

      After finishing first and third at the 24 Hours of Dubai (UAE) and fourth and sixth at the Bathurst 12 Hour (AUS), BMW M Team WRT returned to the podium in Kyalami. Starting second and third on the grid, the two BMW M4 GT3s moved to the front of the field early on in the race and then controlled proceedings throughout the entire race. Van der Linde crossed the finishing line 1.8 seconds ahead of Martin.

      Thanks to the points they picked up for the victory in South Africa, van der Linde, Vanthoor and Weerts have moved to P2 of the IGTC standings after two of this season’s five races. The next races is the 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps (BEL), the home outing for BMW M Team WRT. 

      Strong technology partnerships.

      BMW M Motorsport is supported in the Intercontinental GT Challenge by premium technology partner Shell, official partner Endless, and official supplier KW automotive. Shell has worked with BMW M Motorsport for years on the development of lubricants for motor racing and the road, Endless adds decades of expertise in brake technology to the mix, while KW automotive has developed dampers for the BMW M4 GT3 since the start of the project. “We are pleased to be able to continue and expand our partnership with BMW M Motorsport, which has grown over the years,” said Jürgen Wohlfarth, CEO KW automotive GmbH. “As BMW M Motorsport Official Supplier BMW M4 GT3, we have been involved in the development of the chassis for the BMW M4 GT3 from the outset. As such, we are really proud that the hard work put in by the BMW race engineers and our development department is rewarded with victories and titles for the BMW M4 GT3.”

      Quotes after the Kyalami 9 Hour.

      Andreas Roos (Head of BMW M Motorsport): “Congratulations to BMW M Team WRT on a fantastic and absolutely flawless performance! It is impressive to see how quickly the new member of our BMW M Motorsport family has reached such a high level with the BMW M4 GT3 that it has been able to win two of the first three races. I hope this strong run with the BMW M4 GT3 at the start of this season will continue into the coming months and that we will have even more cause for celebration! I am particularly pleased for Sheldon van der Linde that he was able to win his home race in front of his own fans. That is a very special experience for him. All the drivers did a perfect job, as did all the members of BMW M Motorsport and BMW M Team WRT. Thank you very much to everybody!”

      Vincent Vosse (team principal BMW M Team WRT): “The team and drivers produced a perfect race – just as they did in Dubai and also Bathurst, where we unfortunately did not have the pace to compete at the very front. Everything came together here. I could not have wished for more. The cooperation with BMW M Motorsport is fantastic. It feels as though we have known each other for a very long time. And yet it is just six weeks since our first race together. Thank you to all the BMW M Motorsport employees who support us so magnificently.”

      Sheldon van der Linde (#32 BMW M4 GT3, 1st place): “Every time I race in my home country, it seems to go fantastically well. I have been here three times now and have finished on the podium each time – and won twice. The first victory was very special, but this was even more emotional, as I had a lot of friends and family at the track. I really had goosebumps on the podium. Thank you to BMW M Motorsport and compliments to WRT for that performance in only the third race with BMW.”

      Dries Vanthoor (#32 BMW M4 GT3, 1st place): “A great weekend for us all. Right from day one, we improved the race pace and did a perfect job. The safety car made it a bit close again for the last 25 minutes, but Sheldon brought the win home perfectly. Personally, I took a big step forward here when it comes to understanding the BMW M4 GT3.”

      Charles Weerts (#32 BMW M4 GT3, 1st place): “I am very pleased with my first victory in the BMW M4 GT3. I still remember 2020, when I narrowly lost out to Sheldon and BMW. To now stand alongside them on the top step of the podium is a cool story. I feel much more at home in the car after my second race. I am really very happy.”

      Philipp Eng (#33 BMW M4 GT3, 2nd place): “That was my first race with WRT and I was very intrigued to see how the team goes about its work. I have to say, I am really impressed. A one-two is obviously a fantastic result, and it is looking very good for both cars in the championship. I had an awful lot of fun here in Kyalami.”

      Augusto Farfus (#33 BMW M4 GT3, 2nd place): “From a team perspective, it does not get any better than that. We really did a perfect job. We knew from the start of the weekend that we had a strong package. However, we got the very best out of it. I cannot thank BMW M Motorsport and the team enough. We are now very well positioned in the championship. A great result so early in the season.”

      Maxime Martin (#33 BMW M4 GT3, 2nd place): “For the team, you cannot get a better result than a one-two. We had a clean race without any issues and finished runners-up. In the end we were on the same strategy as our sister car, which meant we had to settle for second.”


    • 25 Feb 2023 11:44 AM | Anonymous

      Event date: Wednesday, 22 February 2023

      A traffic incident in Melbourne prevented us getting to the meeting point on time. However, we contacted Lawrence and met the group as they turned onto Ballan Rd.

      Wendy and I were in our G30 530d as the E85 ZM roadster was clean ready for the British/European motor show. We joined in the middle of the group of 13 cars with Lawrence leading the convoy.

      It was a beautiful evening and up ahead of us the sun was glinting off the roll protection on Steve’s E89 Z4 as he was cruising with the roof down. After turning off the Ballan Rd a gap opened ahead of us and a very nice E30 John Player Special went zapping past us, it sounded great.

      As the sun was going down we turned into Perdrisat Rd to see beautiful views of the Moorabool valley. After the steep descent and climb out of the valley we headed towards the Midland Hwy. I grew up on the corner and when very young I used to drive the old farm ute down to the river with my brothers to fish. The road wasn’t made in those days and was subsequently named after my family. Rather nostalgic and a little sad driving the road and seeing the old family farmhouse.

      Then it was up the Hwy to the Meredith Royal Hotel for dinner and a good chat. Good to meet some new people and also see some we have met at other events. Trevor with his nice E31 840i, Wendy and I were the last to leave fleeing the increasingly aggressive mosquitos.

      Thanks to Lawrence for leading and organising a great little drive and dinner.

      Kent & Wendy Perdrisat | Member #951
      BMW Drivers Club Melbourne

    • 25 Feb 2023 11:39 AM | Anonymous

      Event date: Sunday, 12 February 2023

      Arrived at Sandown for the 07:45-08:30 driver check in. Drivers briefing to follow at 08:30.

      With Practice commencing just after 09:00 on a relatively dry track (a light shower had come through earlier), the track was unfortunately declared wet after rain halfway through run group 1.

      By the time I went out with run group 4 on a very wet and slippery track, there were puddles around the track, it wasn’t a matter of practicing lines etc. it was spotting the laying water and staying off the kerbs. My aim was to make sure the car was running as it should, driving skill was high on the agenda to ensure the car made it through the day. A few people in previous groups having some close calls, I wasn’t out there to set any land speed records.

      I have only had my car on the road for about 6 months after replacing the engine, I felt I had a lot at stake.

      Session 1 was again a wet track. With it raining in the previous groups. We had missed the rain but once again it was wet when I went out, concentration was at it peek as I kept the car straight staying off the kerbs.

      With the track slowly drying out as the session went on and we got more laps in. It was still very wet and fairly unpredictable between turn 2 and 4. Everyone seemed to enjoy the greasy conditions, Luckily with no incidents but there were plenty of smiles at the end of the day.

      Session 2 the track was drying out. Putting in some good times and both allowing for faster traffic and trying to maneuver through the slower traffic. This shows how important starting position can be with getting a few good laps in. I do like it when a faster car passes, it provides an opportunity to follow them through a few corners, you can look at their lines and how they are pushing the car. Drivers were patient and allowing easy no fuss passing.

      Session 3 and 4 were near perfect conditions. Track was dry, sun was out. The track felt very fast. After going back to the garage and looking on I was just over a second faster in session 3 than in session 4. With the track conditions improving and getting familiar with lines, braking points and the limits all contributing.

      The smiles on the faces in the pits after made me think I wasn’t the only one.

      In Session 5 AROCA started to combine groups, some people obviously happy with their times and pulled the pin, some with car issues and others who had evening commitments. The track again was near perfect, Was great to drive with other cars and drivers to get a different feel and compare track speed and lap times.

      Session 6 was pretty much all the drivers that wanted an extra session could, I was having a few car issues so I took advantage of it to try and rectify a mechanical issue but also getting my fastest time for the day in the process. I couldn’t believe it. I think it was a combo of the brakes not cooling fully from the previous session, the track temp and knowing it was the last session all contributed.

      Over all the day was great, It was my first super sprint with the BMWDC as well as my first event with AROCA. I’ve been a club member of BMWDC for about 3 years but have only ever done the come and try days. The event from what I could tell went smooth and was well organized. With Pizza and Coffee available at the track, friendly people and the opportunity to drive on a national track I will definitely be back.

      On top of that I got to take my son 14 (who is a car nut and the main reason I attended this event), for a few laps around such a circuit was awesome. All the help and motivation he gives me to forget about work for a bit and go to the shed and work on my car, it was great for me to be able to reward him for a few laps around a track. Seems little, but the joy it gives both of us is amazing.

      I think it is also a great way to get new interest in the sport and get to take their pride and joy for a lap on such a circuit.

      Zac Dunn | Member #527
      BMW Drivers Club Melbourne

    • 21 Feb 2023 3:31 PM | Anonymous

      +++ Rio Tinto’s aluminium production relies on local hydroelectric power +++ Innovative electrolysis method eliminates all process-related CO2 emissions +++ Potential to use of up to 50 percent secondary material +++ Set to supply US vehicle production at Plant Spartanburg +++

      The BMW Group is continuing its efforts to systematically reduce CO2 emissions in the supply chain. A particular focus is on CO2-intensive materials like aluminium, steel and plastics. The BMW Group therefore intends to source aluminium with significantly reduced CO2 emissions from Rio Tinto’s hydro-powered operations in Canada starting in 2024 and has signed a memorandum of understanding to this effect. Compared to conventionally manufactured aluminium, this approach can save around 70 percent of CO2 emissions. The planned supply volumes will be used exclusively in vehicle production at BMW Group Plant Spartanburg in the US state of South Carolina, in body components like the bonnet, for instance.

      “We have clear goals for lowering CO2 emissions in the supply chain. By using innovative materials, we can reduce our vehicles’ carbon footprint – even before handing them over to customers. The agreement to supply low-carbon aluminium is based on several pillars: in addition to hydroelectric power and a high percentage of secondary material, we also want to lead the automotive industry by ramping up our use of aluminium with no direct CO2 emissions from the smelting process,” explains Joachim Post, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG responsible for Purchasing and Supplier Network.

      The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Canada’s Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, said: “Canada is a global destination of choice for low-carbon investment. This exciting partnership between BMW and Rio Tinto is proof that Canada is well positioned to seize the economic benefits of the clean economy. I am proud to see that low carbon Canadian aluminum will be going into BMW’s vehicles. Canada will continue to enhance our competitive advantages – abundance of critical minerals, skilled labour, clean energy, proximity to markets – to grow our economy and to support made-in-Canada innovation.”

      Owing to its comparatively low weight and other positive material properties, aluminium occupies a firm place in the BMW Group’s intelligent composite construction. In the supply chain of a mid-sized fully-electric vehicle around a quarter of the COemissions are attributable to aluminium. This underlines the tremendous potential of reducing CO2 in the aluminium supply chain. 

      Innovative manufacturing process

      The ELYSIS technology developed for aluminium production, is revolutionising the smelting process required for manufacturing, by generating oxygen instead of carbon dioxide. The innovative method uses carbon-free anodes to eliminate all process-related CO2 emissions and was successfully tested at industrial level for the first time in 2021. The BMW Group intends to become one of the first customers to use this technology in standard production.

      Other pillars of agreement with Rio Tinto

      In addition to the carbon-free process, the agreement also covers aluminium alloys produced using electricity from renewable energy sources, with CO2 emissions that are only a third of the industry average. The aluminium production facilities in Quebec run almost entirely on electricity from six local hydroelectric power stations. As a further contribution to resource conservation, recycled content will be mixed in with the end product to potentially reach up to 50 percent secondary material.

      The use of Rio Tinto’s blockchain technology also guarantees full traceability of the aluminium, all the way back to the original bauxite mine. This enables end-to-end transparency throughout the supply chain and therefore plays an important part in tracking compliance with environmental and social standards for extraction of raw materials.


    • 20 Feb 2023 5:27 PM | Anonymous

      R 18 custom bike from BMW partner VTR Motorrad AG & VTR Customs in aviation style.

      The old "Aunt Ju" Junkers Ju 52, the legendary three-engine commercial and transport aircraft from the 1930s, is still familiar to many people. The Ju 52 with the aircraft registration D-AQUI in the Lufthansa colour scheme grey-black from 1936 became particularly well known worldwide. During its time in the USA from 1970 to 1984 under the American aircraft registration N52JU, it was christened "IRON ANNIE" for short by its then owner Martin Caidin.

      It was precisely this aircraft that inspired a customer of BMW partner VTR Motorrad AG & VTR Customs in Schmerikon, Switzerland, to create a very special customized version of the BMW R 18 – the R 18 "IRON ANNIE". Years before, the architect had already had an individual R nineT built entirely according to his ideas at VTR Customs and this time, too, aviation style elements from aircraft construction were to be used.

      For example, the dial of the speedometer integrated into the tank, which is intended to be reminiscent of old cockpit instruments, or access panels with quick-release fasteners, as found on many aircraft. And of course, it was imperative to borrow from the Ju 52's characteristic corrugated aluminium planking. At the same time, the seat was to be reminiscent of a riding saddle and, of course, only the "IRON ANNIE" colour scheme in grey and black was to be used for the paintwork.

      A BMW R 18 First Edition served as the starting point for the customizing project. First the engine was removed and painted black. All chrome parts were painted black and the fork stanchions also received a black coating in the form of a DLC (Diamond Like Carbon) coat.

      The cockpit trim was pulled back as narrow and flat as possible to emphasise the streamlined shape. The 7 cm shorter fork and a height-adjustable Wilbers shock absorber emphasise the crouched stance of the motorcycle. "To make the bike look smaller and give it a more filigree appearance between the wheels, we had large 18 and 21 inch wheels made by Kineo," adds Daniel Weidmann, Owner & Managing Director of VTR Motorrad & VTR Customs.

      As a further technical treat, racing-style HC3 pumps from Magura were fitted in place of the standard R 18 brake and clutch fittings. The dial of the customized speedometer also received a hand specially made by watchmaker Zeitzone Zurich.

      "One of the big challenges with the R 18 IRON ANNIE was the replica cooling fins in the area of the rear silencers. Shaping these parts into parallel and beautiful radii and at the same time still fastening them harmoniously took a number of attempts," says Daniel Weidmann about the aluminium sheet metal work. This consumed countless hours of work, as the fuel tank, the tail with the suggested tail fin of an aeroplane, the side panels and the cockpit were artfully hand-formed from aluminium sheet. Reminiscences of traditional metal aircraft construction are also provided by the numerous lens-head rivets.

      "What almost pained us a little when we saw all the handmade, bright aluminium sheets shimmering and shining was that they would have to be painted. However, we are extremely satisfied with the result because the R 18 IRON ANNIE differs even more clearly from our well-known SPITFIRE, which is also designed in aviation style," Daniel Weidmann continues.

      The R 18 IRON ANNIE will receive road approval and is sure to turn quite a few heads in its new home on Lake Geneva. It will remain a unique model as promised to the customer.

      BMW R 18 IRON ANNIE by VTR Customs specifications:

      • Base: BMW R 18 First Edition.
      • Sheet metal parts: Fuel tank, rear, side panels, cockpit, mudguard, Aluminium handmade by VTR Customs.
      • Fork: shortened and DLC-coated stanchions.
      • Suspension strut: Wilbers, height adjustable.
      • Wheels: Kineo front 3.5 x 21", rear 6 x18".
      • Tyres: Avon Cobra, 120/70-21 and 200/55-18.
      • Handlebars: ABM Vario Clip.
      • Speedometer: Customized by Zeitzone Zürich.
      • Brake / clutch pump: Magura HC3.
      • Saddle: VTR Customs & Yves Knobel Saddlery.
      • Exhaust system: Walzwerk.
      • Number plate holder: Berham Customs.
      • Side indicator and rear lights: Kellermann Atto.
      • Headlight: HIGHSIDER.
      • Paintwork: VTR Customs & Freuler AG, Benken.


    • 19 Feb 2023 7:40 PM | Anonymous

      Event date: Sunday, 19 February 2023

      We started the day by waking up at 5 am with dad and Makayla to get ready to go on a road trip with BMWDCM. 

      We were off on an adventure to an organised club event at enchanted adventure park at Arthur's seat. The sunrise was amazing on the journey down. 

      After arriving at Enchanted Adventure Park. 

      Dad had a chat with other club members as Makayla, and I explored the tree suspension bridge before dad eagerly joined us to explore the many treasures and beauty enchanted had to offer. 

      We didn't go on the tube slides or tree top walk as thought that was a bit scary for us as I myself am only 13 and my sisters 9. 

      In saying that, though, we had an absolute ball today running through the many garden paths and trickling streams of water before we ran out of energy and then got lunch at the cafe on the grounds. (Dad said we had to grab something healthy, so grabbed wraps and fruit salad).

      The best part of the day and park was my sister and I thought was the fountains and the trickling water through the paths.

      The day was a fantastic day and we had a ball. 

      Zavier Robin
      BMW Drivers Club Melbourne

    • 17 Feb 2023 7:32 PM | Anonymous

      The world's first convertible with a purely electric drive is a MINI. From idea to small series in less than 8 months. The MINI Cooper SE Convertible sets another strong impulse on the way to becoming a fully electric brand.

      Following the positive feedback on the unique specimen presented in summer 2022, MINI is now going ahead with a small series of the all-electric MINI Cooper SE Convertible (power consumption combined: 17.2 kWh/100 km according to WLTP; combined CO2 emissions: 0 g/km) which represents another big step in the direction of electric mobility. The world's first locally emission-free premium convertible in the small car segment shortens the transition period to the introduction of the next-generation all-electric model family. From April 2023, the MINI Cooper SE Convertible will be available in Europe in a limited number of 999 vehicles. 

      "Three years ago we launched the all-electric MINI Cooper SE, and today one in five MINI sold in Europe is an all-electric MINI. This success has spurred us to implement the small series of the MINI Cooper SE Convertible within only a few months. I'm delighted that we can offer 999 MINI customers an extraordinary and exclusive open-air go-kart feeling," says Stefanie Wurst, Head of the MINI Brand.

      The MINI Cooper SE Convertible is available in Enigmatic Black and White Silver. Door handles, side scuttles and the surrounds of the front and rear lights are finished in Resolute Bronze. The MINI logos and the model lettering feature in elegant Piano Black to match. The E logo familiar from the MINI Cooper SE is found on the front apron and on the rear, thereby visually underlining locally emission-free driving fun.

      Further edition-specific equipment details also adorn the door sill trims and side scuttles and, with the 1 of 999 lettering emphasising the exclusive character of the limited edition open-air MINI.

      MINI takes on a pioneering role with the edition-specific alloy wheels. The 17" cast alloy wheels in Electric Power Spoke 2-tone design are made of 100 percent secondary aluminium. The combination of green electricity during production and the use of the secondary raw material can significantly reduce CO2 emissions compared to conventional manufacturing processes.

      Extensive interior equipment with MINI Electric Design features.

      The sports seats are in MINI Yours Leather Lounge design and feature seat heating and adjustable thigh support. The multifunctional sports leather steering wheel in Nappa leather finish contributes to the fun-to-drive atmosphere and stylish driving comfort and can also be heated. In the lower steering wheel spoke, the MINI Electric Badge highlights the limited character of the all-electric convertible. The exclusive Piano Black surfaces, which can be stylishly set off by the ambient lighting, also contribute to car’s exclusive status. The design of the interior emphasises the fully electric character of the open-top four-seater with yellow colour accents, such as the yellow start-stop toggle switch. 

      In addition to numerous other features, the high-quality equipment is complemented in the cockpit by the eDrive services familiar from the MINI Cooper SE. These provides the driver with information on current energy consumption, range and tips for an economical driving style. All essential information is summarised on the MINI Head-Up Display while driving. On longer journeys, the Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go function and the MINI Driving Assistant, among other features, enhance the comfort of the limited MINI Convertible with all-electric drive as standard.

      Pure electrified go-kart feeling.                             

      With a length of 3,850 mm, a wheelbase of 2,495 mm, 1,727 mm width and 1,427 mm height, the dimensions, including the luggage compartment with 160 l load volume, remain unchanged compared to the conventionally powered MINI Convertible. The 135 kW/184 hp electric motor comes from the BMW Group's electric mobility competence centres in Dingolfing and Landshut. Its small size enables particularly harmonious axle load distribution and favours agile and easily controllable handling. The electric drive accelerates the MINI Cooper SE Convertible smoothly from standstill to 100 km/h in 8.2 seconds.

      With a range of 201 kilometres determined in the WLTP test cycle, open-air excursions are possible well beyond the city limits. Up to 30 km/h, the fully electrically powered and thus particularly quiet textile soft top in MINI Yours style with typical Union Jack pattern can be opened, closed or set as a sliding roof.

      From idea to small series.

      With the MINI Cooper SE Convertible, MINI highlights its flexibility and has set up the production of a small series for the first time. The MINI Cooper SE Convertible will be produced in a limited edition of 999 vehicles alongside the conventional MINI Convertible in the Netherlands.


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