BMW has been providing the MotoGP motorcycle racing championship with its safety cars for almost 20 years, and has now unveiled the latest in that fleet.
The new M5 MotoGP Safety Car is based on the road car that people will be able to buy next year and comes with inspiration from the manufacturer’s racing programme.
As with the road-going version, the safety car will be powered by a 4.4-litre, twin-turbocharged V8 engine producing 591bhp and is paired with the newly-introduced, M-specific, xDrive all-wheel drive system. It also comes with an eight-speed automatic gearbox.
The main differences are on the outside as BMW has fitted multiple M Performance parts to make it even sportier. These changes include a carbon fibre rear diffuser, rear spoiler and front grille, and a titanium sports exhaust system that can only be used on track.
Special racing equipment has also been added, such as a front splitter, bucket seats and safety equipment, with BMW also fitting LED light strips that can be controlled by a specially-developed cockpit display.
President of BMW M Frank van Meel said: “A MotoGP Safety Car faces enormous challenges. It is vital to lead a field of unique, high-performance race prototypes safely through all sorts of conditions.
“Innovative motorsport technology is an essential part of this. The new BMW M5 forms the perfect basis for a safety car, as its technical features ensure perfect handling, even at the limits of driving dynamics - on the road and on the racetrack.”
The M5 Safety Car will make its debut at the season finale in Valencia on November 10.