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Hand up for BMW M4 DTM special

M Phwoar: BMW’s latest special edition is one of the most potent and exclusive it has offered to date.

BMW M4 GTS customers offered switch to DTM Champion Edition

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BMW logo20 Oct 2016

BMW Group Australia is planning to secure a share of the 200 ultra-exclusive M4 DTM Champion Editions that have been created to celebrate the German car-maker’s victory in the 2016 German touring car championship (DTM).

The extremely limited M4 variant is yet to be confirmed for Australia but BMW is remaining optimistic that it can snare even a handful of examples, and has already earmarked potential customers for the car.

Following an internal announcement that the car would be unveiled, BMW Group Australia head of product planning Shawn Ticehurst said that the company had approached the 25 customers that had already ordered the mechanically identical M4 GTS and offered an alternative should the Champion Edition come Down Under.

“What we’ve done, knowing the announcement was going to be made, we went out yesterday to all the 25 customers of M4 GTS to let them know this car was coming and if they wanted to have first dibs, we would offer one to them.” he said.

BMW Australia bargained hard for the allocation of the mighty M4 GTS following its announcement a year ago, but it is unlikely as many DTM editions will make it here, if any, with just 200 of the Champion Edition offered worldwide versus the 700 global limit for the GTS.

Mr Ticehurst explained that it was difficult to gauge the potential for the exclusive 4 Series-based offering in Australia’s performance-loving market, but the response of the 25 GTS customers would offer a valuable perspective.

“They might all say no we are happy with our GTS,” he said.

“That will give us a feel for this market too. We wanted to have that conversation with those customers first and then we will go from there.”

While Mr Ticehurst said the car would be a good fit for Australia, he also highlighted the very limited production.

“We are certainly keen on the car and it’s only just been announced and they kept a lot of this under wraps. A car like that, if it’s available here we would love to get it but there’s 200 hundred worldwide.

“Knowing how passionate Australians are for M, we are up there in the best in the world for Ms as a total percentage of BMW sales, it would be nice have it here”.

Like the 25 examples of the M4 GTS already allocated for Australia, the M4 DTM Champion Edition is powered by a grenade version of the M4 3.0-litre turbocharged straight-six under the ‘standard’ M4 and M3, with a massive 368kW and 600Nm on tap.

Performance figures are also identical with the zero to 100km/h dash taking just 3.8 seconds, a top speed of 305km/h and a combined fuel consumption of 8.5 litres per 100km.

DTM versions are set apart from the less exclusive GTS with an Alpine white paint job highlighted by the classic light blue, dark blue and red M-colours allied in stripes along the waist-line, sills and along the carbon-fibre roof and extends through the bootlid.

The carbon-fibre front bumper and air-dam has been slightly re-engineered for the DTM with additional lower vent splitter and aero fins applied in front of the wheel arches for extra downforce.

Bonnet, roof, instrument panel, mirror caps, side sill inserts, rear diffuser and the large fixed rear wing are also constructed with the exotic composite material.

Inside, the interior is modified for a more racing feel in the same fashion as the GTS with a pair of carbon-fibre Alcantara and leather-upholstered bucket seats, six-point harnesses with more conventional M-coloured seatbelts, while the roll-bar that replaces the rear seats is coloured white in place of the GTS’ orange bar.

Its titanium exhaust system is a carry over from the GTS as are the wheels which measure 19-inches on the front axle and 20-inch at the rear, albeit coloured in matte grey. Rubber is courtesy of Michelin in the form of track-developed Pilot Sport Cup 2.

The star-spoke wheels house carbon-ceramic brakes, while suspension is coil-over in all corners with three adjustment settings.

If the model is given the green light for Australia, it is likely to carry a pricetag as hefty as the M4 GTS, which was on offer for $295,000 before on-road costs.

In Germany, lucky DTM customers will be asked €148,500 ($A211,000) but the Australian price is expected to align more closely with the GTS cost if it is confirmed.

BMW has not said if the DTM will be offered with the carbon-fibre wheel option, which blew the price of the GTS out to $316,560 – the most expensive model in the BMW line-up.

The DTM Champion Edition was rolled out after Marco Wittmann took the DTM driver’s championship at the wheel of his BMW Team RGM M4 DTM race-car.

Audi and Mercedes-Benz battled it out on the track with BMW, with Audi eventually claiming the constructors championship in the final race on October 16.

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