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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Design: BMW Pays Homage to Original M

Design Review By Noah Mallin

Back in the 70s car designers all had a big wedge of Gouda on their desks which they used to trace their latest sports car designs. Well not really. But the contrast between BMW's mid 70s Turbo concept (on the right) the original M1 supercar from 1978 (in the middle) and their just revealed M1 Homage (on the left) show that straight lines and creased corners have given way to curves and voluptuous waves.

Also notable is how petite the original looks in contrast to the wide bodied Homage.

The Homage cleverly picks up key cues of the original car while morphine them into it's own approach. The rear window louvers and BMW badges at the leading edges of the rear deck, the shape of the sideglass, the prominent seam from the rear quarter windows that flows into the tail and the wheels all nod to the original model.

Up front, pop-up headlights have given way to low profile lenses tucked into the extended T-shaped mask, which also houses a very brutal interpretation of BMW's grille.

Though it's not a design that will please everyone the detailing and surfacing around the rear flanks is particularly nice and the overall impact of the car is substantial.

The original M1 (above) kicked off BMW's vaunted M division which has since spread out to become the in-house tuning brand for the Bavarian firm.

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