AC Schnitzer BMW GP 3.10


Published Wednesday, February 10th 2010
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Driving pleasure has been written large at AC Schnitzer for 20 years. And thankfully, nothing will change for the 62nd Motor Show in Frankfurt. But this goal can be reached in a totally alternative way, as the launch of the superb AC Schnitzer GP3.10 Gas Powered shows. This high-performance coupe has LPG (Liquified Petroleum Gas) drive, where power and efficiency, economy and ecology, meet in an exciting study.

As if the extravagant exterior of the project vehicle, based on the current 3-series coupe, were not enough, under the bonnet growls the V10 engine of the current M5/M6, which AC Schnitzer is presenting at the show for the first time in bivalent design. The vehicle has a fully sequential LPG system with two parallel 5-cylinder vaporizers. There's no loss of power or dynamics. The engine, tuned with a remapped control unit and modified exhaust tract with sports catalyst and exhaust manifold, develops 552 bhp and produces up to 400 lb-ft at the crankshaft. In itself, that's 45 horses more than the M5/M6. But why power this car with LPG?

Liquified Petroleum Gas is a sensible alternative to normal petrol fuel, both economically and ecologically, and - after corresponding conversion - can be burned in almost any petrol engine. Per liter, LPG is not only cheaper than petrol but produces around 15 percent less CO2 from the exhaust. With over 2700 filling stations in Germany alone, fuel supplies are guaranteed everywhere, and the 80 liter gas tank fits on board with the original 60 liter petrol tank. So you can switch between fuels at any time. In any case, acceleration is more than just acceptable. The sprint to 60 mph takes 4.3 seconds, and the 124 mph mark is passed after just 13.9 seconds. Only at 200 mph does the pressure on your back begin to ease. It's nimble enough to show the rear lights to many powerful sports cars. Especially when a racing suspension from Aachen provides incredible handling qualities. And to match the power of the acceleration, there's the brakes on the AC Schnitzer GP3.10 Gas Powered: at the front, 8-pot fixed caliper brakes with perforated and vented discs size 374 x 36 mm, at the rear a 4-pot brake system with 350 x 24 mm discs.

Talking of slowing down: the striking body design will soon bring passers-by to a stop. In conjunction with the mineral green special paintwork, the AC Schnitzer aerodynamic kit is a real eye-catcher. The air intakes on the front wings, with their characteristic chrome ribs, and the rear 60 mm wheelarch extensions, are particularly successful. With the AC Schnitzer GP3.10 Gas Powered, AC Schnitzer has created a feast for all the senses, where the centrally positioned sports rear silencer with its sonorous crescendo takes center stage acoustically.

The rear styling with its special contours and the rear skirt with integral diffuser, the rear roof wing with carbon center part, are as aesthetically pleasing as the powerful front skirt with its coarsemesh sports grille. The latter makes an effective contribution to the breathing of the oxygen-hungry five-liter engine. Equally breathtaking for the spectator is the first sight of the racing rims Type VI.

The latest creation from the Aachen wheel manufacturer combines the classic Y-spoke appearance with five striking hollow spokes and bicolor finish. Naturally these decorative elements are not just available for the AC Schnitzer GP3.10 Gas Powered. For the moment however the latter is a unique creation not for sale, with an estimated value of $270,000. But we can still get excited because numerous components will soon find their way into the regular AC Schnitzer range. Parts of the exciting sports interior can already be ordered, for example, by customers with a 3-series coupe.

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