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      08-06-2012, 01:54 PM   #1
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Cool BMW Reveals V12 Z3 Prototype Relic

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BMW Reveals V12 Z3 Prototype Relic
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Check out this never before seen relic that BMW M posted on its Facebook page today. It's a Z3 shoehorned with a V12!

No information was given on the car other than the 3 photos titled "V12 BMW Z3 Prototype," but given the Z3's production run from 1996-2002, we can surmise that the engine seen is the M73 5.4 liter engine from the E38 750i and E38 860Ci coupe from the mid 90's (it also matches visually). The M73 featured 322hp / 361 lb-ft torque. The actual engine that the the Z3 M Roadster and Coupe received was the 3.2L S54 from the E46 M3, good for 321hp / 261 lb-ft torque in Europe and 315hp in North America.

Coincidentally, we got some information on this car back in July during our press drives of the F21 M135i. As we were told, Burkhard Göschel, former BMW board member and then Z3 project leader had the idea to fit a V12 engine in the Z3. As mentioned above, it had about 320hp but it was nothing short of undriveable. With about 70% of weight at the front axle, we were told that the car behaved weirdly -- mildly put.

As maniacal as a V12 Z3 M would have been, this prototype was likely never intended to be anything but a one-off fun project by the M engineers.

This V12 Z3 joins many other BMW prototypes which have never seen the mass production line because they never received approval or were one-off projects, such as the M8 coupe, E92 M3 pickup, E30 M3 pickup, Ur-Roadster, E36 M3 Compact, and E46 M3 Wagon (all of which we witnessed in person at BMW M's Secret Underground Garage).



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      08-06-2012, 02:34 PM   #2
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Just imagine if they put the V12 from the McLaren F1 in it.
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      08-06-2012, 04:11 PM   #3
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I'm trying to remember if one of the aftermarket european tuners performed such a task.
But this project straight from BMW is nothing short of amazing: fitting a V12 into that small chassis.
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      08-06-2012, 04:13 PM   #4
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      08-06-2012, 04:16 PM   #5
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      08-06-2012, 04:28 PM   #6
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Such a cool undertaking. Must have been done by the same wacko //M techs that gave us BMW's Project Goldfish with a v16 in a 7er!
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      08-06-2012, 04:36 PM   #7
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I love all the one-off cars that BMW used to make. I hope they still do (a la the E92 M pickup), and that we'll hear about them a few years from now.
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      08-06-2012, 04:42 PM   #8
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Neat project- I'd love to pick up a used Z3 with a blown engine and try this out...
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      08-06-2012, 05:18 PM   #9
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That is pretty awesome, aside from the poor weight distribution. I'm surprised that engine even fit. Makes you wonder what other one-off cars may be lurking in the BMW storage garages.
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      08-06-2012, 05:31 PM   #10
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Too much doppelbock.. That high alcohol content will sneak up every time..........
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      08-06-2012, 05:48 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ADVANT123 View Post
Neat project- I'd love to pick up a used Z3 with a blown engine and try this out...
I was thinking the same thing..., and I do have a 750iL (soon to replace for my 740iL) sitting in my driveway...
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      08-06-2012, 07:04 PM   #12
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      08-06-2012, 07:30 PM   #13
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Talk about oversteer! That woukd be a blast to Practice Your drifting in!
Btw the 8 series was an E31 850. It's a lot of dat up there Jason, so no worries. Feel free to edit my post if/when you read this.
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      08-06-2012, 07:49 PM   #14
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M3 pickup would be sexy and be a huge hit in NA if they are able to keep the price reasonable.

Other than that no one will buy it because you can get decent pick-up'd for low 30's and suppe em up pretty nice for dirt cheap.

They should try an N54 variant of the pickup. Can you imagine a FBO+meth pick-up hahaha
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      08-06-2012, 08:35 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bmw135er View Post
Talk about oversteer! That woukd be a blast to Practice Your drifting in!
70% front weight bias and ONLY 300hp? Talk about understeer.
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      08-06-2012, 08:36 PM   #16
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That is fantastic!

I wonder what the weight distribution is on that car though... that M70 V12 was a heavy SOB. I predict understeer!
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      08-06-2012, 11:43 PM   #17
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With trailing arm suspension in the rear, the traction is a joke. MZ3s are 240hp & 315hp. Even those cars are snap oversteer machines. The S52/S54s are iron blocks vs the M70 aluminum block, so the weight difference shouldn't be as different as you think.
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      08-06-2012, 11:53 PM   #18
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      08-07-2012, 12:26 AM   #19
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      08-07-2012, 12:32 AM   #20
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just sold my M73 powered E31...can't imagine how they fit that V12 into that Z3! Must have just poured it in while it was still molten aluminum.
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      08-07-2012, 05:42 AM   #21
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Why are people so surprised it fits. The engine bay in the Z3 is quite big. Its been done in E30's before.
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      08-07-2012, 05:48 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bmw135er View Post
With trailing arm suspension in the rear, the traction is a joke. MZ3s are 240hp & 315hp. Even those cars are snap oversteer machines. The S52/S54s are iron blocks vs the M70 aluminum block, so the weight difference shouldn't be as different as you think.
The S54 was about 326lbs. If memory serves me correctly, the M70 was at least 380lbs, if not more.

Not a huge difference, but enough with the engine hanging that far over the axle to be a problem
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