Watch BMW Build The Most Powerful F1 Engine Ever – BT52 1,280 horsepower

Engines, Videos | January 24th, 2017 by 9
M12 13 Formula 1 racing engine 750x500

In 1983, Nelson Piquet became the first driver in the history of Formula One to win the world championship title in a racing car powered …

In 1983, Nelson Piquet became the first driver in the history of Formula One to win the world championship title in a racing car powered by a turbo engine: the Brabham BMW BT52.

The engine that imbued the Brabham BMW BT52 with its legendary status was developed by BMW Motorsport GmbH under the guidance of its then Technical Director, Paul Rosche. His team furnished the British Brabham racing team with a 1.5-liter four-cylinder unit featuring 16 valves, a turbocharger and – in a first for Formula One – Digital Motor Electronics.

BMW M12 13 BMW Museum 750x665

This mix made for an awesome power potential, with experts estimating its maximum output at up to 1,400 hp. Rosche’s response to such speculation was typically understated: “We don’t know for sure as the dyno didn’t go beyond 1,280 hp.”

The BMW M12/M13 turbo engine was first deployed in a Formula One race at the start of the 1982 season; 630 days later Nelson Piquet drove the Brabham BMW BT52 to world championship victory. His title win marked the close of an unusually exhilarating season in which Piquet started from pole just once but clocked the fastest race lap four times and won three out of 15 races. He made eight podium appearances, collecting 59 world championship points over the season to take the 1983 Drivers’ World Championship title.

Now a video surfaces on the interwebs showing how the special engine was built.

9 responses to “Watch BMW Build The Most Powerful F1 Engine Ever – BT52 1,280 horsepower”

  1. Kaisuke971 says:

    When WRC cars were death traps, F1s had manuals and LeMans Protos could go over 400km/h… Those were the times, wish i could’ve seen racing in the 80s.

  2. Dailybimmer says:

    Bmw M Power.

  3. Dustin Allred says:

    the Original, E30 M3 Power Train

  4. PaulBracqBMW says:

    It is said the engine in qualifying configuration developed more than 1400 hp. They couldn’t measure the real horsepower of the engine because BMW’s was limited to 1200hp.

  5. Zgornji says:

    WHICH PISTONS DID THEY USE ???

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