top of page

1985 BMW 635 Group A

Historic Cars

1985 BMW 635 Group A
Historic Cars
info_icon.png

If you are interested in the content of this listing, please contact the Dealer. Contact details are indicated below in the section "Contact the Dealer." Should you require confidential support from SpeedHolics for your inquiry, kindly complete the section "I am Interested." This listing is provided by SpeedHolics solely for the purpose of offering information and resources to our readers. The information contained within this listing is the property of the entity indicated as the "Dealer." SpeedHolics has no involvement in the commercial transactions arising from this listing, and we will not derive any financial gain from any sales made through it. Furthermore, SpeedHolics is entirely independent from the "Dealer" mentioned in this listing and maintains no affiliation, association, or connection with them in any capacity. Any transactions, engagements, or communications undertaken as a result of this listing are the sole responsibility of the parties involved, and SpeedHolics shall bear no liability or responsibility in connection therewith. For more information, please refer to the "Legal & Copyright" section below.

info_icon.png

SH ID

24-0408016

info_icon.png

FEATURED BY SPEEDHOLICS

info_icon.png

In Stock

info_icon.png

France

info_icon.png

Dealer


Description

If the two petrol crisis in 1973 and 1979 have had the consequences that we know in the everyday life, they also had an effect in the world of car racing. The Group 5, one of the the leading series, had become just a debauchery of money, and everything was made to have the ultimate weapon on the track. But the FISA decided to react and to set new rules. Starting with the 1982 season, the only cars eligible for touring races would be models of which at least 25,000 examples had been produced, 2500 of which were specialized versions intended for racing, while 500 "Evolution" examples could be made to improve the race car. Additionally, annual production of the car had to amount to at least 5000 units. Along with the strict homologation requirements, the new regulations stipulated virtually all parts be interchangeable between the road car and its racing version. This included various specific engine and suspension parts, but most importantly forbade any aerodynamic development. Since the body had to comply to road legal standards, manufacturers and privateers alike were essentially forbidden from creating outlandish aero packages as seen in the days of Group 5. The change to Group A came as a bit of a shock to the manufacturers active in Group 5, as they weren’t given very much time to adapt. For BMW, this meant they suddenly had to drop their wildly successful 320i Turbo Group 5 and revert to a mundane E28 5-Series, the 528i. Even if this car has won many victories with the two-car BMW Italia, and even more with the Eggenberger Motorsport team which was really challenging the more powerful and faster TWR Jaguar XJ-S HE V12, BMW selected the venerable 6-Series as a replacement. The 635 CSi promised to be well worth the wait though, as it presented big improvement over the mundane 528i. The older car had used only a 2.8L version of the straight six engine, which produced a meager 240 horsepower. In an effort to counter the 400 horsepower V12 Jaguar, the 3.5L from the 635 CSi was taken as a starting point. Since BMW still hadn’t committed to a full factory effort, engine tuning was handled by specialists Alpina and Schrick, while final assembly fell into the very capable hands of Team Schnitzer. The end result was 295 horsepower at 6900 rpm, which still gave the BMW a 105 horsepower deficit over the Jaguar. Luckily, Group A featured an equivalency formula based on engine displacement. The size of the engine affected minimum weight requirements and maximum allowable tire width. With its 3.5L engine, the 635 CSi made do with 1185 kg (2612 lbs) minimum weight and 250-section tires on all four corners. By comparison, this left the BMW with a 222 kg (489 lbs) advantage over its British rival with its massive 5.3L V12. Furthermore, the 635 CSi had the luxury of a five-speed Getrag 265/5 transmission, whereas the XJ-S had to make amends with a four-speed unit. The weight advantage would pay dividends to BMW, as the 635 CSi could brake later, corner better, use less fuel and be easier on brakes and tires than the big Jag. This would especially be of benefit in the longer rounds of the ETCC, like the 24 Hours of Spa.Again using its superior reliability. The 635 CSi became an immediate and very dangerous threat to the superior Jaguars. Furthermore, TWR fielded only two cars, whereas BMW could count on a veritable armada. Along with semi-works Team Schnitzer and Eggenberger-BMW Italia, the 635 CSi was used by Hartge Motorsport, Juma, Motul, Chiazzaro, and a few other ones. As there were now other competitors in the top level Division 3 over 2500cc, BMW stood a very real chance of defeating the fast but fragile Jaguars. The tactic seemed to work, as BMW won six races to Jaguars four. The 635 CSi even managed to win on its debut with Team Schnitzer’s Dieter Quester and Carlo Rossi at Monza, before winning at Vallelunga with 1981 ETCC champions Helmut Kelleners and Umberto Grano of Eggenberger Motorsport-BMW Italia. Between them, these teams took five of the six wins scored by BMW, but the sixth was arguably the most special. Although it was unable to defend its title against the improved Jaguar XJ-S in 1984, the 635 CSi moved on to other great things with success! In Germany a new series was launched to accommodate Group A cars : the Deutsche Produktionswagen Meisterschaft was the immediate predecessor to the later Deutsche Tourenwagen Meisterschaft. Despite lacking power in comparison to its opponents, the big Beemer’s sheer tenacity, bulletproof reliability and lovely handling gave it the ability to conquer virtually every inaugural Group A season on the planet. With total race wins in the dozens and 12 major national and international titles, the BMW 635 CSi is one of the single most successful Group A touring cars of all time. The 635 CSI chassis #RA2-59 has been entered by Bavaria Automobiles, a French team based in Reims. Assembled in 1985, it was initially intended for the European Touring Car Championship (ETCC). Finally, the team led by Dominique Fornage entered the car in the 1985 Spa Francorchamps 24 Hours with Claude Ballot-Lena, Jean-Claude Andruet and René Metge. They finished in a fine 8th place. Two more participations followed in the Belgian endurance event. In 1986, the trio of Marc Sourd, René Metge and Philippe Hazebrouck finished at the foot of the podium behind two factory cars prepared by Schnitzer. Driven by famous drivers: During its career, this 635 CSI was driven by famous French drivers such as JP Jassaud, twice winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, René Metge who, after numerous participations in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, won three times in the Paris Dakar, Jean-Claude Andruet who participated 19 times in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and won numerous rally victories, including the World Rally Championship as well as Claude Ballot-Léna who participated 22 times in the mythical Mancelle race! Restored and back on track Our 635 CSI was then kept in its original condition before undergoing a first restoration including the replacement of the original aluminium roll bar with a steel FIA roll bar designed by MATTER. José Rocher and Eric Castel who had prepared the car at the time overhauled the car in 2014. Acquired in 2020 by the current owner, it has received extensive work including a complete overhaul of the engine and gearbox by Wasserman Racing with only 3H for the engine. The running gear has also been overhauled. The invoices for this recent work are on file. The car was tuned and validated during track tests in the autumn of 2021 with a view to entering it in the Heritage Touring Cup by Peter Auto in 2022 and 2023. That is the perfect car for Pater Auto HTC or VdeV endurance, with just new Valid for 10 yars FIA HTP. It's a beautiful story for a beautiful racing car with a clear history. The typical Motorsport aluminum plates are still present under the dashboard. With the factory having produced around ninety examples of the competition version of the 635, this is a unique opportunity to acquire a car that took part three times in the legendary 24 Hours of Spa and was driven by such great drivers at the time.
Other Cars from
Historic Cars