The iconic BMW 328 vehicle model will be represented with 12 automobiles at the commencement of the Mille Miglia 2012. Together with the series variants, a wide range of racing automobiles will be competing in the lightning trip from Brescia to Rome. The BMW 328 Touring Coupé will head the Bavarian fleet of vehicles. This model was the winning vehicle in 1940.
Dr. Herbert Diess will be driving the vehicle. He is a member of the board of management of BMW AG responsible for development. Diess commented that the BMW 328 establishes benchmarks for automobile aerodynamics and lightweight construction.
The vehicle laid the building blocks for the company's success in this area," he added. Joining Diess on the starting grid is Ian Robertson, who is also a member for the board of management of BMW AG, responsible for marketing and sales at BMW. He stated that a track record of "numerous racing victories" brought the BMW 328 to be one of the most "successful sports vehicles” at the end of 1930s.
At present, the vehicle continues to sum up the character of the BMW brand, he added. The Touring Roadster will also be represented at the Italian heritage race. The BMW 328 Kamm Coupé commemorated its return to the modern Mille Miglia in 2010 and is beginning outside the placings. BMW and the Mille Miglia share a long tradition.
A sports car built by BMW between 1936 and 1940, the BMW 328 was introduced at the Eifelrennen race at the Nurburgring in 1936. Piloted by Ernst Henne, the 328 dominated 2.0-liter class. In 1937, the 328 secured more than 100 class wins and in 1938, the sports car ruled its class at the RAC Tourist Trophy, the Alpine Rally, and the Mille Miglia.
In the following year, the BMW 328 emerged victories in the RAC Rally. The 328 won its class and was fifth overall in the 1939 24 Hours of Le Mans. In April 1940, the Mille Miglia Touring Coupe dominated the Mille Miglia with an average speed of 166.7 km/h (103.6 mph). In 2004, the BMW 328 Mille Miglia Touring Coupe grabbed victory at the Mille Miglia, becoming the first car to win both the pre-1957 and modern classical versions of the race.
The Mille Miglia – which means “Thousand Miles” -- was an open-road, motorsport endurance race staged from 1927 to 1957. In 1957, the race was banned after two fatal crashes: a Ferrari 335 S resulting in the death of Alfonso de Portago, Edmund Nelson and nine spectators; and Triumph TR3 resulting to the death of Joseph Gottgens.
The event was revived as a regularity race for classic and vintage cars. Now known as Mille Miglia Storica, the event is limited to cars that had attended or were registered to the original race.