Motorsports Monday: 1991 BMW M3 BTCC ex-Tim Harvey

I’ve given the E30 crowd a fair amount of shtick over the years, mostly because the chassis seems to be the broadest of the bandwagons that enthusiasts jump on to. But the reality is that I’ve always admired the M3 long before I fully appreciated the breadth of its impact on Motorsport. In many ways, the M3 paved the way for an entire generation of homologation specials that now line the walls of automotive Valhalla, and for that alone we as a community should be thankful. To say that the M3 is iconic is a huge cliche, but just as with the other boxflared wonders from Germany – the Quattro and 944 Turbo – the M3 was (and still is) a staple at the race tracks around the world, cementing its reputation as the defacto street-worthy race car. Much of that reputation was built on decidedly un-streetworthy Touring Car races, though, and while the early 90s were the swan song for the S14-engined E30 as regulations and chassis change to the E36 removed it from active competition, there’s no denying that the outgoing race car still had a tremendous amount of appeal as the sun set on its active competition career:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1991 BMW M3 BTCC on Race Cars Direct


Year: 1991
Model: M3
Engine: 2.5 liter inline-4
Transmission: 6-speed sequential
Mileage: Not Listed
Price: POA

Amspeed are proud to offer for sale the Ex Tim Harvey Labatt’s sponsored 1991 BMW E30 M3, 1 of 5 built by Vic Lee Motorsport for the 91 British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) . Tim Harvey took this car to one outright win at the series finale at Silverstone and two podiums en route to claiming 8th in the championship.

In 1991 the BTCC regulations changed from multi class Group A regs to the new 2-litre formula, the new formula attracted many more manufacturers in turn providing the competitors and viewers with some of the closest racing the series had seen in years.

Many of the BMW teams altered their existing Group A cars with ballast and a reduction in engine capacity. This was not the case for Vic Lee Motorsport where they re-engineered the most successful touring car of the Group A period to take advantage of the new 2-litre formula regulations, the VLM built BMW E30 M3s boasted a range of modifications for example the fuel tank was relocated to optimise the cars centre of gravity, flat floor section and side exit exhaust. Although utilising BMW Motorsports latest rear suspension components, front uprights and in-car adjustable anti roll bars the VLM cars also benefited from a host of geometric alterations and utilised a Holinger 6 speed dog engagement gearbox all aiding to produce the most competitive BMW and car of the 1991 season with Tim Harvey’s team mate Will Hoy winning the championship.

This car has retained its original livery throughout its existence and has been part of a handful of private collectors since 1991. Most recently the car has been competing in the HSCC Super Touring Car Challenge battling against other BMW M3s whilst mixing it with many of the later generation machinery.

The car is race ready and available to view at our premises located only 5miles form Silverstone.

At Amspeed we specialise in Group A/BTCC BMW E30 M3s and this car is currently in a stable of 5 E30 M3 touring cars.

Price on application

For further information on the car please contact us on 01280701230 or at info@amspeedracing.co.uk

If you take the already hot E30 market and attach the equally hot vintage race market to it, the recipe yields one seriously collectable car. Tim Harvey also has name recognition – it was his battle with teammate Steve Soper against John Cleland and Will Hoy that produced one of the most exciting and unbelievable finishes to a championship, as Soper crashed Cleland out (or vice versa, depending on who you believe) leaving Harvey the champion in the Aquafresh green BMW 318is. But the M3 from the previous year is more iconic as a racer, even if Harvey failed to win the championship and only won one race that year. Often lauded as the most successful race car of all time though that’s debatable, this M3 will certainly turn some heads no matter where you go and would get you entry into not only historic Touring Car racing, but also events like the Goodwood Festival of Speed and the Monterey Historics. You’ll pay for the privilege, and pay well – I’d expect that the asking price on this car is well into the mid hundred-thousand dollar range, given that non-winning and less famous STW chassis usually asking in the $100,000 – $250,000 range. But to many this is not only a winning race car and an important bit of history, but a work of art – and perhaps priceless in the effect it has on an entire generation that remembers these race cars slamming doors and jumping curves.

-Carter

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