10 Things a BMW M Hypercar Needs to Corner the Market
BMW M Is Working On A Supercar, But What About The Hypercar?by Safet Satara, on
One of the best ways to showcase your technical expertise and convince buyers to buy your cars is to build a hypercar. Mercedes-AMG did it, Aston Martin too. Heck, Volkswagen AG has the best of them all - the Bugatti Veyron and the Chiron. I can only imagine that somewhere in BMW headquarters in Munchen, the board of directors and investors sat together and discussed the hypercar idea.
After all, back in 2017, when Mercedes-AMG showcased the F1 inspired Project One, BMW M boss Dirk Hacker said:
“We would like to do a standalone car, and we could do it – but today there is no requirement from the market to do it. As a company, we are more focused on future mobility than digitization than building a hypercar, to be honest, but if we came to the decision to do a super sports car, then we could do that.”
Apparently, the market still isn’t favorable for the development of the BMW hypercar, but that does not stop us from the brainstorming of what that proposed hypercar could be. I am giving you ten different things BMW hypercar needs to succeed.
BMW’s Hypercar Must Have a Carbon Fiber Monocell Structure
Oliver Zipse, BMW’s board member in charge of production, said last year that it is highly unlikely that BMW will develop a new carbon-fiber monocell structure in the future. The i3 and the i8 have been the last cars from BMW structured around the carbon-fiber monocell core.
However, in the same breath, Zipse continued:
“It could be that someday, somebody has an idea for a very low-volume, very highly positioned hybrid sports vehicle, and we would consider doing that [carbon fiber monocoque]."
The BMW M hypercar could be just that - a low-volume, highly positioned hybrid sports vehicle.
BMW has a lot of experience with the carbon-fiber monocoque chassis. The i8 is its prime example. It is a car with a carbon chassis capable of supporting a far more powerful propulsion system compared to a three-cylinder and electric motor combo good for 369 horsepower.
However, to reach the sophistication of the Mercedes-AMG Project One or the Valkyrie, BMW would have to resort to creating an even more extreme monocoque chassis. Something partially derived from BMW Formula E maybe? See, the Mercedes F1 racecar profoundly inspires the Mercedes-AMG Project One. I can see that BMW, in the name of electric future, resort to the Formula E technology for their hypercar.
The engine and the transmission in the Project One and the Valkyrie are mated directly to the carbon-fiber monocoque chassis.
As a result, Aston Martin and Mercedes-AMG reduced the weight of the car as a whole and improved the rigidness of the contraption. I can imagine BMW creating a similar bond between the engine and the chassis with its hypercar.
The BMW Hypercar Needs to Have the Best Aerodynamics In The Business
Someone called the new Aston Martin Valkyrie a "diffuser on wheels," while others reported that it could generate up to 1,800 kilograms of downforce at speed (no one knows at what speed), and some said that you need a physics Ph.D. to understand the aerodynamics on it. It is sufficient to say that Adrien Newey and the Red Bull F1 team that worked on the Valkyrie did an incredible job. That is a car BMW’s alleged hypercar has to fight - basically, a road-legal LMP1.
In order to match or overshoot the perfection of the Valkyrie (or the F1-inspired Project One), the BMW hypercar would have to look similar to them.
Rendering specialist Peisert Design revealed a proposed design for the BMW hypercar. Peisert Design based the BMW hypercar on the Valkyrie, and I think that is the right way to go. See, if BMW wants to match the sophistication of the Valkyrie and Project One, this shape is the only way to go. I believe that BMW would install the F1-derived DRS system too.
Interestingly, Peisert Design named the BMW hypercar iRing. Hint to the Nurburgring. I don’t like the name to be honest, but it is an intriguing design nevertheless.
The BMW M Hypercar Has To Have A Familiar but Fresh Styling
Considering that the hypercar have to be a mid-engine beast, BMW definitely has to follow some specific styling rules recently introduced with the BMW i8. Apart from the mandatory shape that will take the hypercar in the direction of the Valkyrie, we can expect a larger double kidney grille than on the i8.
Also, expect a lower rear end and a teardrop shape of the canopy. After all, the aerodynamics is of paramount importance for cars of this magnitude.
As far as Motorsport styling cues go, I can imagine the BMW hypercar in blue, with blue calipers, a modern interpretation of angel eyes up front, and BMW M styled wheels.
The BMW Hypercar Needs to be Exceptionally Light
I will go in the past a bit with this one.
While the Veyron was the first insane hypercar that started the hypercar craze, I feel that the alleged BMW hypercar will fight its fight with the likes of the LaFerrari, 918 Spyder, P1, the Valkyrie, Project One, Regera, and such. In that regard, the weight of it should fall somewhere in this niche, yet, to corner the market, the BMW hypercar should be lighter than any of them. That would put its weight at less than 2,300 pounds. Considering that the Aston Martin Valkyrie, the lightest of them all, weighs between 2,315–2,425 pounds, you see my point.
As far as for the other hypercars and their weight, it goes like this:
|Ferrari LaFerrari||3,495 pounds|
|Porsche 918 Spyder||3,602 pounds|
|McLaren P1||3,411 pounds|
|Mercedes-AMG Project One||2,646–2,866 pounds|
|Koenigsegg Regera||3,240 pounds|
BMW would have an incredible job to accomplish to rule them all. It has the means. After all, BMW worked with SGL Group (a major carbon fiber producer from Germany) to triple carbon-fiber parts production. They have the means, I tell you!
The BMW M Hypercar Must Have a Unique, Adaptive Suspension Setup
Following the integration of the specially developed Pirelli P Zero tires on the BMW M5, I can only imagine that BMW M will turn to Pirelli for the creation of the unique tires for its hypercar.
Considering the incredible performance of the hypercars of today, the tires will have to be able to provide enough grip for the acceleration to 60 mph in 2 seconds or less and support a top speed of more than 230 mph.
The suspension behind the, presumably lightweight, carbon wheels should be of the latest design. I am not sure if the BMW should make it from carbon fiber - like it is on F1 cars. After all, even Koenigsegg created its suspension components from chrome-molybdenum steel tubes. The complexities associated with the carbon fiber suspension components are too extreme for production. However, the active suspension is a must. The M Hypercar would have to be kind and comfy around town and deadly on the track.
The BMW M Hypercar Will Probably Have All-Wheel Drive
I don’t see that the BMW M Hypercar could be anything other than the AWD machine. See, halo cars, hypercars included, are there for one of two reasons - to showcase the new technology, or to showcase the most extreme interpretation of the technology we are already familiar with. The i8 already created a futuristic ambiance within the BMW line but considering that all M-cars will soon become AWD, the BMW M hypercar would be the best way to prove that AWD is better than RWD. That is one way of convincing M3, M4, M5, and Mwhatever drivers that they’ve made the right choice.
All in all, I believe that the plans for the BMW M hypercar, that are definitely stored somewhere in the drawer in the BMW Munchen headquarters, feature a vehicle with AWD, a hybrid setup, and more than 1,000 horsepower.
The BMW Hypercar Could Feature a New Inline-Six and a Potent Hybrid System
While I can predict some stuff about the suspension, shape, or the look of the BMW hypercar, I cannot be sure of what could power it. I will resort to conjecture.
The BMW M Hypercar could be powered by:
- A new I-6, turbocharged engine developing close to 600 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque
- Two or three electric motors that generate a combined output of 500 horsepower
- A Lithium-ion battery with a capacity of at least 20 kWh
- An energy recuperation system
This should put the combined power output at more than 1,000 horsepower and 1,000 pound-feet of torque.
Moreover, I can imagine the performance:
|0-60 mph||2 seconds|
|0-124 mph||8 seconds|
|Top speed||230 mph|
The BMW Hypercar Must Have a Recognizable Name - Will it be the new M1?
Well, I’d like this to happen. In fact, imagine this name - the BMW iM1. I think that would be the single best name for a hypercar overall, and it would fit the BMW hypercar perfectly. Just an idea!
An idea that will not come to fruition.
Markus Flasch, CEO of BMW M said:
“They [M and i] can remain distinct entities because i does not stand for electrification… both of our companies use electric powertrains. This doesn’t mean a conflict, because M will always stand for performance… i will stand for innovation, incubation of new technology, autonomous driving.”
iM1 would be cool. Or I’m just sad!
The New BMW M Hypercar Must Have That Wow Factor
I remember when Pagani revealed the Zonda R. It was a long time ago and, while I was more than interested in its performance, I was smitten by something called carbotanium. That is a mix of beta titanium alloy with advanced carbon composites. The name of it proved to be a fantastic marketing game to give Pagani a mysterious and heroic appearance. It become something like a Marvel character, not only a car.
The BMW M hypercar needs such a quality.
In my mind, it would be best if BMW installs solid-state batteries in it or some super efficient recuperation system. It would work perfectly in a time when everyone is watching the development of electric cars and hybrids so closely.
The BMW M Hypercar Has to Be Expensive
Well, considering it has to go against the Mercedes-AMG Project One or the Aston Martin Valkyrie, the BMW M Hypercar price has to be close to or higher than $3 million.
|Aston Martin Valkyrie||$3.2 million|
|Mercedes-AMG Project One||$2.7 million|
|Bugatti Chiron||$3+ million|
BMW Hypercar or BMW Supercar - Which is Most Likely?
Lately, BMW officials did talk more about the BMW hybrid supercar that will fight with the likes of the McLaren 570S.
The Germans will, apparently, base it on top of the slightly reengineered i8 chassis and provide it with a propulsion system that develops more than 620 horsepower.
Speaking to Autocar, Klaus Fröhlich, the BMW board member responsible for product development, said:
“If you are an engineer, once in your life, you want to make a super-sports car. I think partial electrification will enable that. If we have these very compact and very powerful electric driving units, if we have a carbon fiber chassis – for example, the i8’s – and if we still have high-performance engines, then, if you do it cleverly, you can combine them into a real performance package.”
Considering this comment, I have to say that we are to see the BMW M supercar before the BMW M hypercar. I am happy about that because BMW probably plans to produce a lot of them. Maybe even as many as Audi produces of the R8. The BMW M hypercar, even if it happens, would touch a production number of 300-500 units. No more.
Read our full speculative review on the 2020 BMW i8.
Read our full review on the current BMW i8.
Read our full review on the 2017 BMW i Vision Dynamics Concept.
Read our full driven review on the 2017 BMW i8.
Read our full speculative review on the 2018 BMW i8 Spyder.
Read our full review on the 2008 BMW M1 Hommage.