Bluetooth Hijinx Almost Costs BMW a Guinness World Record
All’s well that end’s wellby Kirby Garlitos, on
BMW has set a new Guinness world record for the “greatest distance vehicle drift in eight hours.” Danish racer Johan Schwartz took the wheel of a BMW M5, and after what literally was hours of hours of continuous drifting, Schwartz managed to drift a mind-numbing distance of 232.5 miles in the sedan, destroying the previous record of 89.55 miles that was set by German racer Harald Muller. As incredible as Schwartz’s record-breaking attempt was, it was on the verge of getting derailed by a common nuisance that almost all of us are familiar with: a malfunctioning Bluetooth.
The malfunctioning Bluetooth stood out among a number of issues during the record attempt
This is a story that’s too incredible to tell. For the record, Schwartz is a veteran endurance driver, so he’s used to spending hours upon hours behind the wheel of a car. He also understood all the things that needed to happen for the record attempt to be successful. What he didn’t expect was his Bluetooth acting up at one point mid-drift. With his communication with partner and BMW instructor Matt Mullins — he drove the refueling car — cut off, Schwartz knew what he needed to. “So I had to, while drifting, you know, reset the whole thing, turn the phone off and back on again,” he told The Verge. “That was pretty, pretty interesting.”
The malfunctioning Bluetooth stood out among a number of issues during the record attempt, partly because it legitimately threatened the whole attempt just as it was coming to a close. But the Danish driver had to navigate through other issues, including refuelling the M5 while it was still drifting. With the help of Mullins, the two managed to do it a few times, though the two cars slamming into each other made for more nail-biting moments for everyone involved in the record attempt. Then there was the time the M5 randomly switched to all-wheel drive for no clear reason. That glitch almost ruined the attempt too.
Ultimately, Schwartz achieved what he set out to do by almost tripling the drift distance of the previous record
Ultimately, Schwartz achieved what he set out to do by almost tripling the drift distance of the previous record. “We knew going in that if we were going to recapture the world record for longest sustained drift and set the bar as high as possible, we would need to find a way to keep the M5 going without stopping to refuel,” Schwartz said. “In the end, the refueling system worked flawlessly, and the M5 performed as expected. It was a big win all around.”
A big win that could’ve been spoiled by a malfunctioning Bluetooth system.
Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M5.
Read more BMW news.