A replica of the very rare model, the 1940 Mille Miglia-winning BMW 328 Kamm Coupe, was created by BMW Classic. Only a handful is known to exist.
All we know is that the winning Touring Coupe model landed in America, another exemplar to Britain and one went to Russia. In Germany, just one 328 Kamm Coupe remained and this model was scrapped after a crash in 1953.
BMW Classic took on the project of recreating the BMW 328 Kamm Coupe over several years. The car is named after the German engineer Wunibald Kamm.
It had been a tedious process with many programs started and abandoned until BMW found the right partners to do the work in time to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Mille Miglia win.
Rene Grobe did a majority of the work. He had previously restored the BMW 328 Touring Coupe and Mille Miglia Roadster for the BMW Museum. For this recreation, he used modern materials, including plastic, carbon fiber and aluminum.
What makes Grobe's prowess all the more impressive is that he did this without any of the original design drawings. The replica was turned over to BMW in March 2010 in time for the commemoration of the classic model's victory.
BMW Classic has long planned to reconstruct the BMW 328 Kamm Coupé. With the Mille Miglia’s 70th anniversary nearing, the need to complete this became urgent. One of the problems was how to make the collection of individual parts into a vehicle that could in fact be driven.
This meant that specialists were needed. The task went to none other than René Große from Wusterwitz, Brandenburg in Germany. Examples of his work include restoring the BMW 328 Touring Coupé and even the Mille Miglia Roadster for the BMW Museum.
Große used a plastic mould that was made of glass and reinforced with fiber with a foam model as foundation. Using additional wooden elements, the mould was then shaped to a strong casing that was split in the middle. In these two half-shells, Große then used aluminium alloy tubes measuring 25 mm in diameter for its space frame. Precision was therefore very crucial as no corrections could be made to its outer skin.
The reason for this was that the weight of frame should be as near as possible to the original, which was 30 kg. Aluminum body panels, sourced from Meisterschule, were then used for its outer skin.
The inside also had new panels which needed to be incorporated to the mould. This includes the bulkhead, dashboard, double floor section of the body, and inner front wings, to name a few. For the difficult task of fitting the body to its space frame, BMW relied on the skills of René Große's team of body experts.
One interesting aspect that can be seen when it was being constructed was that the frames location on the outer edges of its metal skin had aluminium strips, measuring 40 mm, welded to them. After that its outer skin was edged inward about the aluminium strip with just the width of a few millimeters in order to give that intricate look for the edges on the wheel arches, bonnet, doors, and windows.
This detail is so unique that BMW has even patented it, much like what it did to the design of the door hinges and the bonnet hinges. The sketches were available. This is how the team was able to build the new parts to be as close in appearance to the original.