To celebrate 40 years of racing in the U.S., BMW has unveiled a special livery for two cars that will compete at the 12 Hours of Sebring this month.
The livery pays homage to the original IMSA 3.0 CSL car that won in Sebring in 1975. The new Z4 GTLM CSL Homage vehicles were first shown at the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance this past weekend in Florida, accompanied by 1975 12 Hours of Sebring drivers Brian Redman, Sam Posey, and Hans-Joachim Stuck as well as former BMW Motorsport Manager Jochen Neerpasch. Current BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt and BMW ace driver Bill Auberlen were also present at the reveal.
The original racing CSL car, which was developed in a matter of a few short months, was an important first step for BMW to make its way to the North American market. More than 40 years ago, the public often confused BMW for British Motor Works, instead of Bavarian Motor Works, but that eventually changed when BMW arrived on American soil. Although the brand's North American racing debut was delayed by several factors, including the world energy crisis, BMW got back on its feet in March 1975 just in time for the racing season. At this time, BMW of North America was officially formed.
This isn't the only anniversary BMW will be celebrating in the near future. In 2016, BMW will turn 100 years old. Until then, watch for the Z4 GTLM CSL Homage cars to debut March 21st at the 12 Hours of Sebring.