Not that we're counting, but that's his sixth BMW...
An M6 Coupe in 2013, an M4 Coupe in 2014, an M6 Convertible in 2015, an M2 Coupe in 2016, an M4 CS in 2017, and now this – an M3 CS. Marc Marquez has claimed the title for the fastest MotoGP qualifier for the sixth consecutive year and that means he gets to drive home yet another shiny new BMW.
The amped-up M3 in question serves as the last hurrah for the outgoing F30-generation 3 Series and takes the shape of high-powered sports sedan of which BMW is making roughly 1,200 cars, with about 550 examples earmarked for the U.S. market. Positioned above the Competition Package, the new CS ups the power ante to 453 horsepower (337 kilowatts) and 443 pound-feet (600 Newton-meters) of torque from its turbocharged inline-six 3.0-liter engine. The added oomph has reduced the 0-62 mph (0-100 kph) sprint time to 3.9 seconds and has granted the performance sedan with a top speed of 173 mph (280 kph, electronically limited).
To understand how a MotoGP rider can claim the BMW M Award at the end of the season, all drivers score points based on their positions in each qualifying weekend. Needless to say, the one to obtain the highest number of points receives the keys to a new BMW M model a.k.a. the “Official Car of MotoGP” during the last 20 seasons of the competition.
Speaking at the award ceremony held in Valencia, Spain, Marc Marquez said:
“I can hardly believe that I have won the BMW M Award for the sixth time running. One year ago, I announced here that my objective for 2018 was to claim this sixth victory - and I have actually managed it. That makes me very proud. Now I can hardly wait to get behind the wheel of this fantastic BMW M3 CS.”
Marc Márquez extends record winning sequence in the BMW M Award: fastest qualifier in MotoGP™ in the BMW M anniversary season.
Valencia. The finale at Valencia, Spain, marked the end of a special season for BMW M in MotoGP. 2018 was the 20th season for BMW M as “Official Car of MotoGP”. The BMW M Award for the fastest qualifier is an integral feature of decades of involvement at the top level of motorbike racing. Since 2003, this award has traditionally been handed over at the season finale. One man seems unbeatable in the race to claim the winner’s car: record holder Marc Márquez extended his winning run in the BMW M Award, claiming the sought-after prize for the sixth time running.
This year, Márquez was rewarded for his performances with the BMW M3 CS (combined fuel consumption: 8.5 l/100 km*; combined CO2 emissions: 198 g/km*). The official award ceremony took place on Saturday at the MotoGP finale at Valencia. The car for this year’s winner was handed over to Márquez by Carmelo Ezpeleta, CEO of MotoGP organiser Dorna Sports, and Markus Flasch, President of BMW M GmbH.
Márquez has already made history several times with the BMW M Award. He won it for the first time in 2013, becoming the first rookie to top the special ranking. In 2015, the Spaniard became the first rider to win the BMW M Award for three consecutive years. He became the exclusive record holder in 2016 with his fourth straight victory. In the current 2018 season, Márquez won the BMW M Award with a total of 341 points, 73 points ahead of his closest challenger Andrea Dovizioso.
By choosing the BMW M3 CS as the BMW M Award winner’s car, BMW M GmbH has provided a real highlight in the anniversary season. It is the most powerful production car from the M3 series to date. It takes just 3.9 seconds to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h. Its powerful M TwinPower turbo inline-six-cylinder engine delivers a performance of 460 hp and a torque of 600 Nm. A 7-speed M dual clutch transmission with Drivelogic takes care of the power transmission in the BMW M Award winner’s car. The adaptive M suspension in the BMW M3 CS guarantees the highest dynamic handling right up to the limit. The sporty appearance of the car is highlighted by the paintwork in Frozen Dark Blue, the 19-inch light alloy double-spoke wheels, the full leather, fine-grain Merino bi-colour upholstery, as well as further fittings highlights such as the M steering wheel in Alcantara.
“I can hardly believe that I have won the BMW M Award for the sixth time running,” said Márquez at the award ceremony at Valencia. “One year ago, I announced here that my objective for 2018 was to claim this sixth victory - and I have actually managed it. That makes me very proud. Now I can hardly wait to get behind the wheel of this fantastic BMW M3 CS. I want to thank BMW M GmbH for providing the BMW M Award as an accolade for the fastest qualifier. This shows special appreciation for us as MotoGP riders. The prospect of winning this prize provides even more motivation for us when qualifying starts on Saturdays.”
“We are delighted with the successful partnership with BMW M, which now spans two decades. In BMW M, we have been fortunate to have a strong and reliable partner at our side for 20 years now – and the BMW M Award has long established itself as an integral part of the MotoGP season. After all, we are presenting the award for the 16th time today,” said Carmelo Ezpeleta, CEO of Dorna Sports. “This award is fantastic. Our MotoGP riders produce top performances every time they take to the track for qualifying – and what better way to honour these performances than with an exclusive prize like the BMW M Award? Every year, BMW M GmbH presents outstanding cars to the winners, and the BMW M3 CS continues this tradition. It is no wonder that the prize is so coveted among the riders, and I take my hat off to Marc Márquez. Congratulations on this impressive sixth win in a row.”
“There are hardly enough superlatives to describe Marc Márquez’ successes in the BMW M Award,” said Markus Flasch, President of BMW M GmbH. “He has prevailed regularly against some very strong competition since 2013 and proved just how talented he is as fastest qualifier in the MotoGP. The fact that he has now won the BMW M Award for the sixth time running is more than just impressive. Marc has made history again with this success in our anniversary season as a MotoGP partner. Congratulations on this exceptional performance. We are delighted to hand over this exclusive BMW M3 CS today. This prize is a token of our appreciation for his outstanding performance. I am sure that it will provide him with extreme driving pleasure - just like the winner’s cars of the last five years.”
As with the scoring system for the race, the riders receive points for their positions in qualifying at each Grand Prix weekend. The rider who has picked up the most points at the end of the season wins the coveted BMW M Award, in the form of an exclusive BMW M automobile. The record holder is Marc Márquez, who has now claimed the BMW M Award six times in a row. Valentino Rossi and Casey Stoner each have three wins to their name. Jorge Lorenzo has been honoured as the best qualifier twice to date while Sete Gibernau and Nicky Hayden have each won the award once.
For more information about BMW M GmbH and the involvement as the “Official Car of MotoGP”, see: www.bmw-m.com.