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1956→1957 BMW 507 Series I

1956→1957 BMW 507 Series I

1956→1957 BMW 507 Series I

When making its debut in New York in 1955 the 507 left both journalists and the public absolutely spellbound. The long and sleek engine compartment, the cockpit perfectly tailored to the driver and passenger, the short and muscular rear end, stretched side lines and gently sweeping curves gave the car absolutely beautiful, timeless design.

At the same time the 507 came with a brand-new, but nevertheless clear and impressive BMW face: The double kidney grille was now vertical instead of horizontal, sweeping elegantly between the headlights across the entire front end of the car. And the 507 also had a lot to offer within the engine compartment, boasting an aluminium V8 acknowledged to this day as the first light-alloy V8 in the world built in series production.

Finished in brilliant red, the sales brochure proudly presenting BMW’s new eight-cylinder sports car promised truly outstanding performance: 150 hp from 3.2 litres and top speed of 220 km/h or 136 mph. And as an option BMW somewhat later also offered an upgraded version, delivering approximately 165 hp maximum output.

This truly exclusive car went to exactly 251 proud owners between 1956 and 1959. And not all of them wanted to enjoy this beauty merely as a café cruiser, racing driver and the “King of Hill-Climbing” Hans Stuck using a modified 507 in mountain races in Europe and winning a number of events in his eight-cylinder roadster.

Story by BMW Group

In Detail

type Series Production Car
production years 1956 – 1957
built at Munich, Germany
price $ $ 8,988
engine 90° V8
position Front, Longitudinal
aspiration Natural
block material Aluminum Alloy
valvetrain OHV 2 Valves / Cyl
displacement 3160 cc / 192.8 in³
bore 82.0 mm / 3.23 in
stroke 75.0 mm / 2.95 in
compression 7.5:1
power 104.4 kw / 140 bhp @ 4800 rpm
specific output 44.3 bhp per litre
bhp/weight 109.38 bhp per tonne
torque 222.0 nm / 163.7 ft lbs @ 4000 rpm
body / frame Aluminum & Tubular Steel over Steel Frame
driven wheels RWD
wheel type Metal Discs or Optional Ridge
front brakes Discs
rear brakes Drums
f suspension Double Wishbones w/Coil Springs
r suspension Rigid Axle w/Coil Springs
curb weight 1280 kg / 2822 lbs
wheelbase 2400 mm / 94.5 in
front track 1445 mm / 56.9 in
rear track 1425 mm / 56.1 in
length 4380 mm / 172.4 in
width 1650 mm / 65.0 in
height 1300 mm / 51.2 in
transmission 4-Speed Manual
tran clutch Single Plate Dry
top speed ~200 kph / 124.3 mph
0 – 60 mph ~8.8 seconds
0 – 1/4 mile ~16.5 seconds
fuel capacity 110 litres or 29.04 gal.

Auction Sales History

1957 BMW 507 Roadster 70038 – sold for $1,002,500 Fresh restoration with engine rebuild by Motion Products. On arrival in the current prestigious Oldenburg collection, the car was treated to a complete engine rebuild at the hands of highly respected garage Wayne Obry’s Motion Products. The intent while in the Oldenburg collection has always been to have a car that was on the button and ready to use, and this has been achieved. At the time of cataloguing the car was road tested by a Bonhams specialist and was found to perform extremely well, its suspension is well set up to provide comfortable road handling, while the solid power resource and completely rebuilt gearbox shifts very smoothly both up and down the pattern. The brakes are equally precise and bring the car calmly and consistently down the odometer without drama. So, aside from its gorgeous aesthetics and condition, this is a great driving example also.

Auction Source: 2011 Quail Lodge Sale by Bonhams