BMW is not an old-fashioned brand

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Purchasing classics there

"BMWs are old-fashioned motorcycles." "I am too young to drive a BMW." "You are never too old to drive a BMW." You can see that last comment positively. But BMW simply had the reputation of being a somewhat sluggish, expensive motorcycle.

In addition, there was little to grumble about the quality of the blue and white boxers, which at the time were usually supplied in black. Police often wanted to be white. And that the BMW Vollschwinge models were also available in red and blue for export to the States? When copies of them came back to Europe, the hard core BMW drivers were shaved. "Can't be original!" "The decadence!"

BMW on the circuits

Yet BMW has an impressive racing history. In the 76s, BMW was successful when it came to world speed records. Ernst Henne drove 1949 together. When it came to “normal” road racing, however, it was a different story. The heavy BMWs could not keep up with the (especially British) competition. After the Second World War, German brands were not allowed to participate in competitions as a punishment. And when the World Championship Motorcycle Racing started in 500, BMW only raced in national road races. That happened with the impressive RS XNUMX with compressor, which dates back to before WWII. When BMW was allowed to join the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme, compressors were banned. That was the end of a technically impressive episode.

In the 500s, BMW tried it on the 53cc class circuits. Initially this was done with the production racers RS 54 and RS 1954, in 500 the development of a 1955cc injection engine started. It was allowed to drift from 1954. With limited success… BMW didn't get very far on two wheels, but in the sidecar class it went all right. There, the Germans scored no fewer than 1974 world titles and 19 constructors' titles between 20 and XNUMX.

The enduro competitions as a revenue model

In the late 80s, German riders achieved some success in the tough enduro classes. When this resulted in the R 1981 G / S, this machine was used in the Dakar rally. Victories followed by Hubert Auriol (1983 and 1984) and Gaston Rahier (1985 and 1999). Richard Sainct won the Dakar rally in 2000 and 650 with an F XNUMX RR. And BMW was completely 'back in business' again. To this day the GS models are the types that drive BMW Motorrad.
In 2008, BMW entered the Enduro World Championship with the G 450 X. In 2009, it took second place in the manufacturers' title.
In 2009, BMW entered the World Superbike Championship with a new transverse four-cylinder, the S 1000 RR. And no R27 driver could have ever imagined that.

Helmut Dahne

In the meantime, Helmut Dähne won on a modified R75 / 5, 750 cc machine Imola. In 1976 he won the Production TT on the Isle of Man on a modified R 90 S. His machines have both been preserved. And now - here in the Netherlands - three Helmut Dähne replicas have already been made. One of these is also technically identical to the TT winner. The other two do have the looks, but have remained largely identical technically. Oh yes: To end the story correctly: There are 230 holes in each front brake disc.

Also read:
- BMW R90 / 6 and BMW R75 / 5
- BMW prices and originality. Everything must be right
- BMW K1, can it be crazier?
- BMW Mono (and the club)
- 'Blauwtje': A very special BMW R45


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Originally quite rare
But it can always be rarer
230 Holes per disc
But that went too far for many a BMW driver ...
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  1. LS

    And let's not forget Herbert Spahn, what he did on his BMW at Zandvoort, so beautiful to see. The fact that I was also driving BMW at the time, R51 / 3 gave an extra dimension there of course

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