Customer race car will contest booming GT4 category.

The GT4 racing category is booming at the moment and BMW has announced it will get in on the action from 2018 with the M4 GT4.

The rules allow only limited modifications to the base car, and BMW says the race car’s drivetrain and electronics will be lifted wholesale from the M4 road car. That means power will come from a twin-turbo, 3.0-liter, straight-six engine driving the rear wheels. As standard, it produces 431 horsepower, but the GT4’s output will be determined by Balance of Performance equalisation.

A carbon fiber hood and doors shave some pounds off, while a front splitter and rear wing add downforce. A race exhaust aids the engine’s breathing, and the seats, brakes, and pedal box “use solutions carried over from the M6 GT3.”

The M4 GT4 will slot into BMW Motorsport’s range of customer race cars between the entry-level M235i Racing and the big M6 GT3. BMW’s previous entry into the GT4 category, the V8-engined M3 GT4, proved popular with teams and many are still racing it.

Incidentally, Dutch outfit Ekris Motorsport builds its own GT4-spec M4, developed entirely independently, which it races in the GT4 Euroseries under the Racing for Holland banner.  

The factory BMW M4 GT4 will be eligible for any of the myriad series around the world that accept GT4-spec machinery. Deliveries to customer teams will begin in time for the start of the 2018 season.

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Munich (DE), 28th July 2016. BMW Motorsport will send the successor of the popular BMW M3 GT4 into action as of the 2018 season: the BMW M4 GT4. This close-to-production car based on the BMW M4 Coupé adds a competitive entrant in the growing GT4 sector to BMW Motorsport's range of products and continues the long and successful tradition of BMW in customer racing. The newly developed GT sports car will complete its first tests at the end of 2016 so that customers will have a technically perfected car available for the start of the 2018 season.

"The GT4 category is currently experiencing a boom," said BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt. "It offers affordable motorsport with cars of technical high-quality and, therefore, attracts a wide target audience. We see enormous potential around the world for privateer BMW teams for whom the BMW M4 GT4 is an option. Developing a classic customer racing car such as this and offering it to privateer teams has always been one of BMW Motorsport's core competencies. This also was the case with the predecessor model, the BMW M3 GT4, which is still in action in international race series today. The BMW M4 Coupé provides the ideal basis for our new GT4 model. This is a strong base for our engineers to close the gap between our customer racing spearhead, the BMW M6 GT3, and the BMW M235i Racing for newcomers with a car that is extremely sporty in its production version. The BMW M4 GT4 is designed perfectly for simple use by privateer teams, who can celebrate successes around the world as ambassadors for BMW Motorsport with this model."

Top quality and safety standards, excellent driveability and low running costs were the premises at the start of the development of the BMW M4 GT4. The entire drivetrain, including electronics, will be taken from the BMW M4 Coupé. The carbon bonnet comes from the BMW M4 GTS, and the BMW M4 GT4 has carbon-fibre doors, a special motorsport front splitter and rear wing, as well as a racing exhaust system. The seats, the brakes and the pedal box use solutions carried over from the BMW M6 GT3.

The offer of contesting races in existing GT4 classes with the BMW M4 GT4 is open to customer teams around the world. Germany, Europe, North America and Asia all have ideal conditions for the car. BMW Motorsport will also use the new challenger to bring talented young drivers closer to the GT3 class as part of the BMW Motorsport Junior Programme. The first cars are due to be delivered to customers in the second half of 2017. The first possible race appearance will be the 24 Hours of Dubai (AE) in January 2018.