Official: Bmw will return to DTM in 2012

Article by Christian Andrei, on October 15, 2010

After signifying an interest to return to the DTM (German Touring Car Championship) last April, BMW has finally confirmed that it will make its comeback in 2012. BMW had left the series in 1994. To create a technical regulations pathway for the future, BMW and other participating carmakers have been working with the DTM umbrella organization ITR e.V. BMW said that it can now ascertain the details of this decision.

BMW has previously disclosed that it will be bringing the M3 to the race. Historically, this model has figured prominently in touring and sports car races. In fact, the current M3 is already a world-famous racer. The latest win of the M3 GT was at the 24-hour Nurburgring race months ago.

Dr Klaus Draeger shared that BMW’s return to the DTM is a basic part of the brand’s restructuring related to motorsport activities. Draeger is a member of BMW AG’s Board of Management and is responsible for development activities.

Draeger added that the brand is going back to its roots, given the increased commitment to its production car racing. The race track remains to be a high-powered environment, Draeger further added, and it is the best venue to show that its vehicles still has the sporting characteristics to go against the competition.

DTM is the best platform to do this, Draeger concluded. BMW Motorsport Director Mario Theissen, meanwhile commented that the whole BMW Motorsport team is fully committed to this project.

After the brand revealed its intent last April, they not only started making the technical preparations but also established the necessary parameters that would ensure that a concept vehicle to be deployed in the DTM offers excellent performance, Theissen shared.

With the brand’s Board of Management giving the approval, the team can now move forward and start with the development, Theissen related. Hans Werner Aufrecht revealed that they are grateful that BMW has decided to enter the DTM starting 2012.

Aufrecht is the 1st Chairman of the Board of ITR e.V., the commercial rights holder, as well as the promoter, of DTM. This marks another achievement for the future of this popular racing series and shows that the efforts they made over the years did not go to waste, Aufrecht disclosed.

The foundation of this race, Aufrecht added, was a result of the partnership with DMSB and other DTM manufacturers like Audi and Mercedes-Benz. Aufrecht declared that he thanks all the parties involved and is anticipating being able to witness the Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz as they compete once again with each other on a race track.

This is what many fans have been waiting for, Aufrecht concluded. BMW planned to have the M3 as its basic DTM vehicle. This is a model that has long experienced a number of successes in both sports car racing and touring. For example, Eric van de Poele (BE) drove a racing version of BMW in 1987 and won a DTM title.

Roberto Ravaglia (IT), another BMW driver, also won a DTM title back in 1989. Driving the BMW 635 CSi, Volker Strycek (DE) also won during the 1984 DTM premier. The brand’s M3 GT2 had caught the attention of endurance racing after it won the Nürburgring (DE) 24-hour race.

Press Release

BMW to return to DTM in 2012.

Munich, 15th October 2010. The return of BMW to the DTM from 2012 is reality: This was confirmed by the company during the DTM race weekend at the Hockenheimring. In April this year BMW had announced its intention to race in the DTM in principle from 2012, the first time since its departure from the series in 1994. The Board of Management of BMW AG considers conditions tied to a positive decision to return to the popular touring car series have now been met.
In recent months BMW has been working with the DTM umbrella organisation ITR e.V. and the other manufacturers represented in the DTM on issues relating to the future technical regulations, and the long-term internationalisation of the championship. The positive nature of these discussions means BMW Motorsport can now begin planning its DTM comeback in greater detail.

Dr Klaus Draeger, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG with responsibility for development, says: “The return of BMW to the DTM is a fundamental part of the restructuring of our motorsport activities. With its increased commitment to production car racing, BMW is returning to its roots. The race track is the perfect place to demonstrate the impressive sporting characteristics of our vehicles against our core competitors in a high-powered environment. The DTM is the ideal stage on which to do this.”

BMW Motorsport Director Mario Theissen comments: “The entire team at BMW Motorsport is approaching this exciting project with absolute commitment. We began making technical preparations following our declaration of intent in April, and established parameters for a high-performance vehicle concept for deployment in the DTM. The positive decision of the BMW Board of Management means we can now shift up a gear and give the green light for development.”

Hans Werner Aufrecht, 1st Chairman of the Board of ITR e.V. (DTM commercial rights holder and promoter): “We welcome the decision by BMW to enter the DTM from 2012. This is a further milestone for the future of our popular racing series, and proves that our efforts over the past few years have paid off. We laid the foundation for this in conjunction with the DMSB and the existing DTM manufacturers, namely Audi and Mercedes-Benz. Thus I would like to heartily thank all parties. I am personally looking forward to again seeing the three premium brands of Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz competing against each other on the race track. Our fans have waited a long time for this.”

The intention is to use the BMW M3 as the basic DTM vehicle, a car that has enjoyed unique successes in the field of touring and sports car racing in the past. Eric van de Poele (BE) and Roberto Ravaglia (IT) celebrated two DTM titles with the racing version of BMW’s most sporty representative back in 1987 and 1989, while before that Volker Strycek (DE) won the DTM premiere in 1984 in the BMW 635 CSi. This season the current BMW M3 GT2 caused a sensation in the world of international endurance racing, taking victory in the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring (DE).

Topics: bmw, dtm

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