BMW has teased us a couple of times about its record breaking attempt, and finally, they have decided to post the extended video of the M5’s actual eight hour drift that they have documented.
It was Johan Schwartz, an instructor of BMW’s Performance Driving School, who was behind the wheels of the performance sedan. He drove this as an attempt to improve his previous performance record from back in 2013, when he took the previous generation M5 for a drift, leaving with a record of 51.27 miles (82.51 kilometers).
At that time, he was able to cover 322.5 laps of one of the course at the BMW Performance Center located in South Carolina. And recently, with the new M5 (F90), he took on the same track, and was able to go around it, 2,000 times.
Naturally, the BMW M5 (F90) got crowned as the new Guinness World Record holder for the longest vehicle drift, with 232.5 miles (374.17 kilometers). With this figure, BMW easily overtook the Toyota GT86’s record that was set back in 2014, with 89.55 miles (144.12 kilometers), and another one in June 2017 at 102.5 miles (165.04 kilometers).
This was made possible by BMW driving instructor Matt Mullins, as he was in charge of the support vehicle to enable car to car refueling with a previous generation M5. It carried an extra gasoline tank to refuel the thirsty 600 horsepower biturbo 4.4 liter V8 for five times mid-drift -- basically like what you see in the Fast and the Furious franchise. This was a tricky thing to do. In fact, both M5s collided a couple of times during the process of refueling.
To make sure that the M5 could drift properly for longer periods, the roads had to be dampened. It is also worth noting that the driver was able to accomplish this record, by going sideways for eight hours without any interruptions, or bathroom breaks. Moreover, on that same day, the automaker was able to accomplish another record, which is the one for the longest twin vehicle drift (with assistance of water) with 39.25 miles (63.16 kilometers).
The video shown here includes the behind the scenes footage wherein people from BMW talked about how risky this move is. It also revealed the risks taken by the refueler, Matt Butts, who could easily have been sandwiched by the two M5s.
Aside from that, it also was a fire hazard. Many things could go wrong when anyone tries to pour 15 to 18 gallons of fuel in 50 seconds, made more complicated by the fact that the car was moving. Even if not everything went as planned when they were undergoing tests on the trial day, the official attempt turned out to be a success.