Throwback: Old DTM Cars Don’t Die… They Just Get Faster
2024 Intro

There’s nothing better than a classic race car – with proper pedigree – that’s been restored to better-than-new condition. Especially when that race car comes from the golden era of touring car racing.

But not all race cars are treated to such a pampered retirement. Obviously, some never make it to retirement at all. And then there are the cars that changed hands multiple times after their heyday, with each owner adding some history – for better or for worse. This is one of those cars, and 10 years on from its original Speedhunters feature, its story is still fascinating. Let’s wind the clock back for another look…

2014 Feature

I like museums, especially automotive ones. They are special places to visit; to soak up history and examine periods in time that have been perfectly encapsulated by the items on display.

But there’s always a touch of sadness when I see a race car lifted for all to admire, its once cutting-edge suspension and brakes are now redundant as it poses for photos. Maybe there’s a video wall nearby acting as a constant reminder of its great achievements, or a soundtrack that loops engine noise through the space. You know the drill…

BMW E30 DTM M3 Gatebil Mantorp Park -1

Then there are the renegades – the escapees – the ones that got away into the wild. Left to fend for themselves, without factory or big-team support, old race cars can often mutate into the most incredible creations. The sort you’d never dare even consider when looking at a factory-produced race car.

But when you find one a couple of decades down the line, it really is a wonderful thing.

BMW E30 DTM M3 Gatebil Mantorp Park -17

You are probably thinking: ‘This can’t be a real DTM car,’ right? That’s exactly what it is. One that strayed from the party line a long time ago. If you’re cringing a little bit already, you probably won’t want to know that it once had a Chevy V8 mounted between its chassis legs.

BMW E30 DTM M3 Gatebil Mantorp Park -18

From this angle, you can see why people sometimes wonder if the engine is mid-mounted, as the large alloy ducting that helps air escape from the cooling hardware is so deep. The truth is, that the race series the M3 competes in allows the furthest part of the engine to be mounted no more than 200mm back from the bottom edge of the windscreen. So the BMW-sourced V8 can now sit way back, with that lovely stiff cross-bracing demonstrating how far behind the centre of the wheel line it is.

BMW E30 DTM M3 Gatebil Mantorp Park -2

I was told it was a crazy squeeze to get it in there, as witnessed by that air intake pipe that snakes into the front of the custom plenum. To get to it and administer any sort of maintenance requires dislocating limbs and removing half the hardware, but every misplaced kilo in a race car can make the crucial difference between well-balanced handling and a pitchy, unwanted and unmanageable setup.

BMW E30 DTM M3 Gatebil Mantorp Park -28
BMW E30 DTM M3 Gatebil Mantorp Park -38

So what we have here is a rough and ready mash-up of factory-backed magnificence that has been taken into the darkness of some uniquely talented minds and morphed into this. It’s like an Olympic athlete who took a load of drugs, or maybe an old boxer who has mental power on his side after years in the ring.

BMW E30 DTM M3 Gatebil Mantorp Park -4

The more mechanically-minded amongst you will have worked out by now that there is also a turbo feeding the V8, which is mounted inside the alloy box you can see in the background of this picture. Yup, right where the passenger would have their legs. But then again, the logo on the side of the BMW is for GIK Turbo, one of Sweden’s longest-established, premier turbo specialists.

BMW E30 DTM M3 Gatebil Mantorp Park -3

The alloy box is another reminder that this isn’t a converted road car – it’s a gen-u-ine, straight-up race car that has never had a passenger seat. So why would it even matter if a turbo was placed where a useless bag of bones might perch?

BMW E30 DTM M3 Gatebil Mantorp Park -34

I’m a fan of old race cars in all shapes and forms – from immaculately preserved and maintained examples to these war-torn veterans. Neither is better. All have their qualities that draw me in. But I have a special respect for this BMW, and no matter how you feel about it, the fact is, it’s out there kicking ass on the track rather than staring out of a glass box at tourists all day…

Which do you prefer?

Bryn Musselwhite
Instagram: brynmusselwhite



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I have a thing for old race cars, the history, the scrapes all over the well worn body. I bought one that I use as a daily driver, nothing that was well known, just one that was raced. It’s far from perfect, but it’s loud and I love driving it, hearing it pop and bang as I shift through the gears.


What is the car?


It’s an 06 Mini cooper s slick top. Bought it from the guy who ordered it, he changed out the cam, went with a smaller pulley, headers added with a 3 inch exhaust system. He raced it for many years, not a whole lot of damage or rust, just a fun car to drive. I’ve always had older car, 60”s-70’s, but with prices so high up there along with other things I was lucky to find this. It’s worked out fine, runs really good for how many miles are on the engine and it’s real responsive, a car where you feel the road and it’s a blast to drive.

Chimzys Ghostie

Yessss, you are alive and in control of the machine! Manual everything. No driver assists. This is how a proper car should be. Analog. A lot of people don’t think like you anymore!

Chimzys Ghostie

Great feature. Looks like a fun car to throw around with the V8 being mounted so far back. Any idea what the power and weight of it are?

In the last few days I’ve seen vintage Indy cars and modern gt4 cars race as well as some testing of LMP cars. If it’s chasing a lap time you can’t hate on it.

But if it’s a poser pretending they race or pretending “because car car” I will 100% hate on it. More features like this instead of hack job street cars / liberty walk BS.

Love how this feature contrasts the photos, cars, and comments of the “Miami” feature a few posts back. No “aesthetic vibes” here. Just men who still have testicles


Glad to see old race cars still alive and still kicking ass as they should


Look how far back the engine is set in the car! Sheesh! Love it


Proper touring car stuff from back in the day, just like those pre-2000s BTCC racers. Insane!

Chimzys Ghostie

Ever seen how far and low a Cup Car engine sits in NASCAR?

I raced with a madman who built a 500whp Miata weighing 1700lbs and he also had a Golf he was working on before he passed away.

In the Golf he relocated the engine to the passenger seat and created a RWD setup for it. Died before he could finish it but the engine going in was about 400whp and he was shooting for under 1800lbs with the vehicle.

This type of engine placement is where you should aim to put the weight of a properly designed car because it helps with polar moment of inertia.


The AERO MODS are the TRUTH.

Some of my canyon pals (especially a certain "modded McLaren P1" guy, and the "turbo Lambo guys") always ask me why my car gaps them on the straightaways.

Sure, my vehicle does 0-60 in 2.2sec, but that's nothing to write home about in 2024. Hell, there are at least FIVE production cars (if memory serves) that post better times, right out of the box! One of them is my daily driver! Even the 0-125 time in 5.5sec (better than a Chiron) isn't that amazing in today's canyon scene.

So why can I still pull away? The creators of the E30 in this article could tell you: The secret is airflow. Sure, a modded P1 might turn heads of some discalceated Dads in a Home Depot parking lot, but as long as you have vestigial appendages like...a ROOF..a windshield...your little P1 still has the aerodynamic properties of a cruise ship, and you WILL be dropped in the canyons.

Amateurs want to play around in wind tunnels or "fluid dynamics" on the computer. Didn't Thetis dip Achilles into a river of dynamic fluid? Look how that turned out...

Haggler's Right

Spoke to an F1 engineer last night who had 2 world titles to his name as a designer. As in the guy who oversees all the engineers. He has a Ph.D and was in the sport for over a decade. Everything you said is demonstrably false about roofs and windshields. He actually called you a "dumb dumb."

We had a 2 hour conversation about downforce and drag and when I read him what you wrote he laughed out loud. You're really a special kind of stupid Frank. I actually applaud your delusion.


A relatively stock was clocked running the same time as you up stunt and faster than you by 12 seconds on an other road you frequent. A local sent me this footage after one of your little outbursts.

How does an Evo 8 with 400whp run faster than you with these terrible aerodynamics. I believe you are the one getting dropped by the kids now in far inferior equipment.

Shut up and stop spreading completely false ideas about cars as if they are fact. You are not an engineer. You do not race. You have zero business advising anyone about anything technical.


If that had any grain of truth to it than the bloodhound SSC would be a convertible.

What a dumb spew of nonsense.


Real name given: none
Car owned: unmentioned
Claimed video footage: unposted
Months spent spamming this websight comments: 2




You get legitimately destroyed by some random kid in a 300whp car with coilovers and brake pads LOL.


You crossed the line now attorney is a rottweiler..
Be thankful it's just MY guy...
Rupert's guy is a WOLF...
Jay's legal team are a pack of T-REXes...
If you can be at home near the phone, be.


What happened to your Rottweiler?

For the record Frank actually paid a lawyer to try and bully me about posting this video proving he’s a slow incompetent cuck.

There is no case any lawyer with a brain would proceed with and nothing has happened. There is zero grounds for any legal and I would legitimately laugh if this goes to court or proceeded legally.

Rich as$ hats who get called out always love to try and flex muscle. I simply blocked his dumb ass lawyer and told the to go procreate with themselves.

Nothing has happened to me. Nothing will happen to me, and if it does I have a bazooka waiting for this jerk off and his lawyer. All legally signed and sealed with a bow on it.

A lot of vaginal activity in this comment section. Frank…please tie your ovaries. Your lawyer is just jacking your money. Lmao.


Your Rottweiler and you can both suck on my balls. Spit it out cupcake. Cause it ain’t yours.


brb, paying my lawyer to try to take down a youtube vid dethroning me as the CANYON GOD
brb, unironically calling myself ronin at age 60+
brb, left foot throttle (?????)
brb, crashed my bought-not-built how many times now?


So cuuuuuteee. I wub wittle wotty babies. So fun to train them to sit and obey.

Golden Retriever

Well, as you said...I'm at home typing from a computer while you have posted multiple videos violating the speed limit and claiming you are the fastest person in the canyons...all on record.

Wouldn't take much to calculate those speeds out would it? Or show a judge the video of you titled "drifting in the canyons" where you completely spin out endangering the general public. I saved it and many others if you want to push this.

Ruh roh Frankie. Remember when you admitted you and Rupert dodged the authorities with your speed tape?