Bruce Canepa He is one of the most famous collectors of classics in the United States. Heir to a family dealership business, he has become one of the greatest Porsche experts, channeling his passion into a huge company dedicated to restoring and selling classics. A businessman that we all want to imitate. Its latest restoration has taken our hiccups away: one of 40 BMW M1 Procar produced, and the only one converted for legal road circulation. A true gem.
The BMW M1 was BMW’s first mid-engined supercar, a project that originated in a collaboration with Lamborghini.
The BMW M1 is a very special car. It is today one of the most valued BMW classics, partly thanks to a low production, of only 453 units. It was BMW Motorsport’s first road car, and during the 1980s, forty units were built to the Procar specification. These cars competed in a kind of single-brand cup, which was held together before the Formula 1 Grand Prix, with top-level pilots at their controls. Of course, they were mechanically different cars from the M1 on the road.
Its inline six-cylinder 3.5-liter M88 engines developed up to 680 hp in its turbocharged competition versions. They were lightened and had a specific body kit, created with the aim of achieving more downforce. This particular unit never got to see the circuits. It was created for the M1 Procar Championship, as a “replacement” for the M1 that did compete. After a series of transactions over the years, it ended up in California, in the hands of Bruce Canepa.
Brakes from a Porsche 962, spare parts from the original Procar … the restoration is at a stratospheric level.
Bruce brought the car to his company, with the goal of fully restoring it and adapting it for road use. Thus began a process of years, which has been completed just days ago, to the sigh and evocation of lovers of this classic – let’s face it, we can never drive such an exclusive machine. Painted in an elegant blue-gray color, the BMW M1 with chassis # 094 has been completely restored, using a multitude of Procar parts, as well as parts from other vehicles, such as Brembo brakes from a Porsche 962.
Their 17-inch BBS rims are of Procar origin, as well as its suspension elements, its aerodynamic kit and other components of the chassis, restored from spare parts. The coilovers are from Penske Racing and the fantastic M88 engine It was restored by VAC Motorsport. The result is that the 3.5-liter six-cylinder, in this case atmospheric, develops a whopping 414 hp, channeled to the rear axle using a ZF original five-speed manual gearbox, restored by Vintage Racing Motors.
But without any doubt, the interior is the area most noteworthy. Tastefully restored in the Canepa workshop, everything has been covered in high quality perforated leather. The steering wheel and instrumentation look as they did in the late 70s, and impractical accessories such as electric mirrors, the ashtray or some air vents have been removed, looking a more racing air. In short, a car to dream of that we doubt has an affordable price. It will probably reach 7 figures.
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