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From Wed Jun 11 11:46:11 1997
From: Dale Beuning <>
Subject: Yowzie! Flippin' Bimmers!
To: (David Foster), (Daniel Grambihler),, (Russ Wiles), (Bruce Heitman)
Date: Wed, 11 Jun 1997 11:46:01 -0700 (PDT)
Cc: ()

> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Date: 11 Jun 1997 09:35:57 -0400
> From: Ryan Neve <>
> Subject: What happened....
> Well,
> As you can tell by the stuff I'm selling, I no longer have my beloved
> Alaska Blue 318tiS. I rolled it at an SCCA AutoX. It's totaled. I walked
> away with only minor injuries, but the car was flat (totaled).
> How did it happen? I don't know. Lots of people were watching, and no one
> had ever seen anything like it.
> From a witness:
> >I was working the 7 cone slalom when the "incident" occured.
> >Unfortunately, I didn't see all that led up to the flip just the flip
> >itself, because I was watching my brother-in-law driving my car at the
> >far end of the course. I was amazed at the violence of the roll. The
> >driver's side tire hooked right and got the car up on two wheels, then
> >the wheel bit into the pavement and the car litterally snapped up into
> >the air before crashing down on the roof. The new steeply raked
> >windshield pillars didn't afford much support to the roof. The car was a
> >new model 318is, a '96 I think. BTW I had my air pressure guage in my
> >pocket so I went over and checked the pressures while the wheels were
> >conveniently in the air. They were all 35-36 lbs. The tires were BFG
> >R1s.
> >He had just won the rookie class for the event.
> Somehow the front left wheel caught the pavement and cartwheeled me. Not
> fun. I don't know if it was driver error, or mechanical failure, but you
> shouldn't be able to flip (I didn't roll) in 2nd gear in the middle of a
> flat parking lot.
> Another Opinion:
> >Gee, Ryan. I'm not sure what happened. I suppose it's possible that
> >either the outer front control arm or tie-rod collapsed, allowing the
> >wheel to *hook* at a point when weight was transitioning just right to
> >cause a roll. I know that when I was watching Paul Kozlak race his ti at
> >the Petersburg Pro Solo last month, he was lifting the inside rear wheel
> >entering a corner, and the inside front wheel exiting a corner. The M3 as
> >totally unmodifed from the factory will lift the inner front wheel, but
> >not the rear. In fact, the key to making it work good on the autox course
> >is getting that front wheel to stay on the ground; at least that's my
> >experience, otherwise the car will understeer badly.
> and from another...
> >Tom Fowler of OPM look at the suspension and noted that a couple bolts (he
> >used technical terms that I can't remember) were torn from the lower
> >control arm and/or unibody or something. He wonders if it caused the
> >accident or was a result of it.
> and....
> >...all four wheels showed damage from digging into the pavement.
> >As a matter of fact there is a circular imprint in the asphalt from one
> >wheel slamming down into it flat on.
> The car is pretty far away, so I haven't been able to examine it closely.
> The Insurance worked out well, and Amica was very professional about
> everything, and the car kept its value very well.
> It looks like it's too late to order a '97 318ti, so I'm going to wait a
> little while. I am also hoping a 323tiS will be an option. Perhaps in Inca
> Orange with Grey Millpoint (nobody copy me). I just bought an almost
> perfect 1972 Bavaria with a 260HP Metric Mechanic 3.5 EFI for a very good
> price which will be fun until my next ti.
> Take Care,
> - -Ryan
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Date: 11 Jun 1997 10:16:33 -0400
> From: Shawn Collins <>
> Subject: Re: What happened....
> On 6/11/97 8:30 AM, Ryan Neve wrote...
> >Somehow the front left wheel caught the pavement and cartwheeled me. Not
> >fun. I don't know if it was driver error, or mechanical failure, but you
> >shouldn't be able to flip (I didn't roll) in 2nd gear in the middle of a
> >flat parking lot.
> I had a similar experience 10 years ago in a Pontiac Firefly (Geo Metro,
> Suzuki Swift, Suzuki Forsa -- one of those 3-door, 3 cylinder jobs). I
> was working as a car jockey for a Pontiac dealership, and had just
> dropped a customer off at home in this car (dealer's car). I left their
> house, turned onto a two lane sideroad driving south. I was doing the
> limit (80kph), approaching a slow moving minivan and pulled out to pass.
> At that moment, something went wrong in the front left (tierod, I think),
> and (this is my assumption) the left front wheel turned in. The car
> started to go violently sideways, both left side tires blew, and the rims
> dug into the pavement, rolling me 3 times, then I slid about 50 ft on the
> roof until the car flipped back up onto it's wheels, facing south in the
> RH lane. I was okay, just shaken up. The car was flattened.
> I autocross, and I've watched many others do the same. One thing I've
> wondered while watching is that some tires seem to have so much flex in
> the sidewall that if they pushed it a little harder, the rim would
> certainly scrape the pavement. I doubt that the rim would grab, unless
> there were some ruts on the ground. I would guess that in your case
> something failed, and it certainly wasn't you. You should try to have
> those torn bolts investigated. Which begs the question: since you were
> at the autocross, what is BMW's liability here? Probably zip.
> I'm sorry to hear what happened, just glad you're okay.
> Shawn


                       |            Dale Beuning           |
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