Imagine a race car built with today’s tech going against its 50-year-old vintage counterpart. That sort of technological outgunning was what came to mind when we learned about Gruppe5 Motorsports and its plan to build the ultimate road-going BMW 2002, and just how much more advanced it is compared to its namesake Group 5 FIA cars.
Racer Tom Zejac created Gruppe5 Motorsports with renowned BMW tuner Steve Dinan and race car chassis builder Bill Riley. Their goal is to build some of the world’s most track-capable street-legal cars using 1965-1975 BMW 2002s as the starting point. The limited run of 300 cars will pay homage to some of the world’s coolest-looking production-car-based racers using the best that modern technology has to offer.
To begin the process, owners must hand over a titled and registered 1965-1975 2002. The first step is stripping the car down, removing every panel. The rebuild begins with a roll cage reinforcing the factory chassis and all exterior panels except the roof are replaced with prepreg carbon fiber.
The 2002’s body is widened by way of era-appropriate box flares that match the widened carbon fiber rocker panels. The rear flares reach almost to the tail panel and are integrated with the carbon fiber rear diffuser. You’ll find more exposed carbon fiber inside forming the dash and center stack as well as the housing for the Riley Technologies electric air conditioning unit that’s pulled straight from an LMP2 race car.
That widened bodywork covers 19-inch center-lock BBS wheels wearing either Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 or Pirelli Trofeo R tires for the street. Rolling stock is linked to a fully independent suspension that uses pushrods and inboard-mounted coilovers to centralize mass and lower unsprung weight. It’s the same type of suspension Riley uses on its IMSA cars.
The heart of the creation is a hand-built, dry-sump, S85 BMW V-10 that Gruppe5 likens to a V-10 version of BMW’s V-8 Daytona prototype engine. Two iterations are available, both significantly massaged from its factory 5.0-liter displacement. First is a 5.8-liter version good for 744 horsepower at 8200 rpm on race fuel, while a 5.9-liter variant churns out 808 horsepower at 8400 rpm.
A carbon-fiber driveshaft links the V-10 to a rear-mounted Xtrac six-speed sequential transmission that’s air-shifted using steering wheel paddles. Buyers can opt for different gear sets to match their intended use, and can also choose to add Gruppe5 Inconel race exhaust, pneumatic air jacks, and Bosch Collision Avoidance System.
If you think none of this sounds cheap, you’re right. The 5.8-liter versions will cost $875,000, while the 803-horsepower 5.9-liter version will be $975,000. Gruppe5 hopes to build 200 of the former and 100 of the latter.
With a curb weight of just 2200 pounds and total downforce of 2400 pounds, Gruppe5’s BMW 2002 should be a formidable track machine in the right hands. There’s no mention of when deliveries can be expected, but the company is accepting purchase inquiries if you’re in the market for a the ultimate homage to FIA’s Group 5 Special Touring Cars.