BMW XM Safety Car Flaunts Two-Tone Design at Bathurst 12 Hour

Gone are the days of lightweight coupes or sedans serving as safety cars. Instead, at the 2024 Repco Bathurst 12 Hour, the BMW XM will take on the Safety Car role. The M division has struck a multi-year deal with the race organizers to provide M models as the official race cars.

Unlike the typical low-slung sports cars often seen as Safety Cars, the XM offers a different perspective. This two-tone XM is the middle option positioned between the XM Label and the inline-six model. This weekend in Australia, the plug-in hybrid SUV will share the track with two vehicles more aligned with the M ethos: the M2 and the M5 Competition.

At the Dubai Autodrome in the United Arab Emirates earlier this month, the electric luxobarge received the Safety Car treatment with an M livery. Similarly, last month, the first hybrid M model played a similar role at the US Daytona 24 Hours. A more powerful XM Label will also serve as the official 2024 MotoGP Safety Car.

While the XM isn’t a spiritual successor to the M1, it marks BMW’s first dedicated M vehicle since then. BMW once considered the I16 supercar as a replacement for the mid-engine model in the late 1970s and early 1980s. However, the brand opted for the safer SUV option. Why? BMW believed the XM would boost sales compared to a specialized sports car, which would have incurred additional development costs.

Designating the XM (code-named G09) as a Safety Car is a savvy marketing move. It enhances the vehicle’s visibility with minimal financial investment from BMW.

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