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Fire breathing beasts from the Dark Continent

Posted by Flyboy 
Hi all, long time since my last post, spent a lazy Saturday playing catch up around the forum, and this got me thinking and reminiscing about the good old days when men where men, motor racing was dangerous and sex was safe, and a punch on the gas pedal of anything decent sent anything and everything "greeny beeny" running for cover.
So I was wondering, in this modern day and age of all things automotive, now made out of plastic and silicon chips with thier low carbon foot print and and enviro friendy tech, if the members here, still long for the fire and thunder of those fire breathing beasts with rows of Weber DCOE's or IDA's using up nearly all the oil produced by the Middle East in the last 30 years, as they made the ground rumble as they circulated the local race track? Damn, I know I do, is the true romance, golden era, if you will of cars a distant memory, a time far in the past, replaced by eviro freindly transport to move people from here to there with no fuss or fafare.

Just to give you an idea of what I am talking about, and to put you in the mood, I thought I would share some of the fire breathing monsters that where concieved in my little corner of the world, although you probably know them already, "Fire breathing beasts from the Dark Continent"

BMW 333i/ 325is EVOII

BMW South Africa's Motorsport division created the 333i in 1986 by fitting the 3210 ccm M30 "big six" ("M30B32" of the 733i E23/ 533i E12/ 533i E28/ 633CSi E24) engine to a 2-door E30. The resulting 333i was a major success in saloon car racing in that country and is now a collectors item. These cars, built with help from Alpina in Buchloe, Bavaria, Germany, featured some interesting compromises like forcing the buyer to choose between air conditioning (vital in South Africa) or power steering (because of lack of space due to the large M30 engine). They were only built in small numbers in 1986. BMW South Africa provided the following specifications for the 333i: Powerplant - M30B32 6 Cylinder 3210 cc 145 kW (197 PS; 194 hp) at 5500 rpm. 285 N·m (210 lb·ft) torque at 4300 rpm. The cars were fitted with a 5 speed manual gearbox and limited slip differential. Braking was enhanced by 296 mm (11.7 in) Alpina dual ventilated grooved front disc brakes. ABS was optional. The cars were fitted with J7x16 Alpina wheels and Pirelli P7 (195x50VR16)tyres. BMW provided performance figures were impressive, with a top speed of 228 km/h (142 mph). 0–100 km/h in 7.4 seconds, and a standing kilometer in 27.7 seconds at sea level. Approximately 210 of these cars were produced. The 333i was an all round "Pocket Rocket."

Later when it became clear that South Africa would not be getting the M3, the 325iS was created. Initially this was merely a 325i 2-door fitted with a bodykit and a close-ratio gearbox (improving acceleration at the expense of top speed and economy), but more changes were made to keep the car competitive in South African saloon car racing. Nevertheless, these cars were always sold to the public. This culminated in the 325iS Evo II of late 1991. By now several body panels were made of aluminum and the M20 engine grew to 2.7 L and now produced 155 kW (208 hp))and a 0-62 mph in a mere 7.5 seconds

BMW 530/535

The M535i, featuring a 3.5L engine with special styling such as Motorsport front and rear spoilers, Recaro-brand sport seats, a close-ratio transmission and limited-slip differential, larger brakes, and other styling cues such as Motorsport striping down the sides of the car and on the front airdam, was available between 1979 and 1981 with 1410 cars produced. In South Africa, the 530 MLE was produced as a light-weight homologation special for racing. These Motorsport E12's are often considered the first production models that the BMW Motorsport division ever produced.

BMW 745i

A different 745i was built for the South Africa market, because the turbocharger on the European-market 745i could not be installed in right-hand-drive versions of the car due to space restrictions in the engine bay (in RHD configuration, the steering shaft occupied the space where the turbocharger/exhaust was located on LHD versions). This car was fitted with the 286 hp (213 kW) dual-camshaft 24-valve type-M88 /3 Motorsport engine (with a Bosch ML-Jetronic fuel injection system) as used in the M635i, and M5. 209 of these cars were built between 1984 and 1986, fitted with either an automatic transmission or a 5-speed 'sport' gearbox. Of the 209 cars built 192 were automatics and 17 were fitted with manual gearboxes.

BMW South Africa ran one of these 745i models in Class A of the South African Modified Saloon Car Championship, the only BMW-Sanctioned motor sport application in the history of BMW 7-series cars.


The RHD South African specifications M5s had the M88/3 powerplant which delivered 210 kW (286 PS; 282 bhp), whereas the North American 1988 M5 was equipped with the S38 6-cylinder engine that had a catalytic converter, which reduced the power output to 191 kW (260 PS; 256 bhp).


When in doubt, use full throttle,
it may not improve the situation, but it will end the suspence.
Very good post.

The sad part is, despite all greenwashing, modern cars are not so much "environment friendly" as marketing leads us think they are.
Cheap fuel is gone forever. That will hurt automotive industry, and some "way of life".

You got to love the BMW116d, claiming 4.1l/100km...
The e30 324d did what, 7l/100km?
Thanks Jose, interesting to see you from Viana do Castelo, and the driver in the pictures is Tony Viana, he was a legend here in motor racing, you should have seen him throw that big 7 series around the track, unfortunatly he passed away from cancer a few years ago.
Jeeeez, I get 7.6l/100km in my little e30 318i, I love it.
See my post in the registry section.


When in doubt, use full throttle,
it may not improve the situation, but it will end the suspence.
There are plenty of Portuguese people, and their descendants, in South Africa.
Maybe he's one!
My wife's parents used to go to South Africa several times on vacation from Moçambique, where they lived back in the late sixties up to 1974.

Too bad "South Africa 2010 world cup" ended early for Portugal, or you would see plenty red-green flags...

grinning smiley
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