BMW On Ice

Gary S. Vasilash

Although the BMW 320i sedan that was introduced at the North American International Auto Show last week is certainly of interest, what is of especial interest—because it isn’t exactly the sort of thing that one ordinarily associates with a car company—is the two-man bobsled that BMW developed with the USA Bobsled & Skeleton Federation (USBSF).


BMW 320i

And what makes this even more interesting is that as this picture indicates, the company used a whole lot of carbon fiber composite materials in the construction of the bobsled.

20 Dec. 2012: BMW unveils and tests the M2 2-man Bobsled at the Olympic Sports Complex in Lake Placid, N.Y. (Photo/Todd Bissonette)

BMW Bobsled

This know-how is predicated on the knowledge the company is gaining through BMW i division, which is focusing on developing electric vehicles with carbon fiber chassis.

I3_Persp2_3/4Front_logo/felge_ 002

BMW i3

Said Michael Scully, creative director, BMW Group Designworks USA, where the vehicle was developed, “BMW EfficientDynamics techniques”—which include not only light-weighting, but also a focus on aerodynamics—are at the heart of the sled’s design, making it sleeker, lighter and we hope faster: essentially a BMW on ice.”

The sled was entered in its first competition on January 19 at the FIBT World Cup race in Igls, Austria.

In the two-man event, the BMW-developed sled came in 14th. However, in the Team Competition, third place was achieved.

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