The economic boom at the end of the fifties involved rising demands of prospective BMW customers. Spartan, small cars were on the way out and customers called for real cars. BMW reacted to this trend, launching the 600 model in 1957, an extended Isetta with a two-cylinder flat engine fitted at the rear. As early as 1959, the curved four-seater was superseded by a much more modern construction, whose pontoon body was for the first time self-supporting: The BMW 700.
The 700 quickly made a name for itself, due in particular to its robustness, effective price and motor sport publicity. Soon after entering production in 1959, BMW’s racing engineers developed the BMW 700 RS especially for hill climb events. They created a spyder which only shared axle components and an engine from the original BMW 700.
Barely resembling its roadworthy brother, the 700 RS was supported by a space frame chassis and clothed by an extremely low aluminum body. As an extension of their motorcycle engines, a flat-twin power unit equipped with two Dell’Orto carburettors developing an amazing 70 bhp at 8000 rpm from just 700 cc.
700 RS made its first public appearance in June 1960 in the Rossfeld Hill-Climb Race. And in the early ’60s drivers such as Heinz Eppelein, Hans Stuck, Alexander von Falkenhausen and Walter Schneider brought home numerous victories in this racing car.