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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

BMW 503 (1956-1960)


In the early 50s production in a range of BMW motorcycles were located, cheap, two-seater Isetta, which is a kind of motor-cab, and a huge limo 502nd Soon these vehicles sporty model joined the 503rd Unfortunately, on this car a few could afford. In 1929 a coupé costing 950 DM (German marks), and as a convertible 32 950 DM. For that amount you could then buy a house.

BMW 503 was then the top techniques. The car was driven by an 8-cylinder V-engine with central timing and valve tappets. Gave a capacity of 3.2 liter 140 hp. This all-aluminum body mounted on an aluminum exterior. Gearbox specially lengthened gear to ride on the highway was more comfortable. The maximum speed of 190 km / h and "hundred" in 13 seconds like the 50s quite good results.

A novelty is automatically lifted after pressing the windows and a tilt in a convertible. Initially, the hydraulic system used here. However, the rubber hoses with wire braid burst from the widespread use and fluid poured on the cover door. In later copies of the solution was replaced by a faulty electrical system.

BMW 503 was built in two series. In the first 1956 years between May and December 1957 was 219 cars. The remaining 193 cars were constructed before June 1960. The main differences concerned the gear lever, lifting techniques and placing glass ashtrays and decorative trim. In the first series of cars shift lever was placed on the steering column, it was moved to the second floor. Initially, to raise and lower windows used a hydraulic system, then used the electrical system. Ashtray, which was first placed under the dash, transferred to the top right next to the speaker, and curved moldings straightened. In 1958, the front brakes replaced with more powerful brakes.

Creator BMW 503 Albrecht Graf von Goertz was born on 12 January 1914. With his two siblings grew up in the estate of their parents in Brunkensen in Lower Saxony. Already at the age of 5 years found that cars will be his passion in life. After graduation, the young Earl in 1933 began practice at Deutsche Bank in Hamburg. He later moved to London bank Helbert & Co Wagga. Albrecht acknowledged, however, that his career prospects in Europe are not very promising and in 1935 he passed the request for a visa at the American embassy in Grosvenor Square. In the autumn of next year he left the Old Continent, and went on a trip to New York. There did not stay long and soon the place he moved to sunny California, to Los Angeles. To earn a living, he worked at a car wash in the factory and aircraft engines. In 1938 he rented a garage on Rodeo Drive, where he began to modify Ford Model A and B. The Mercury chassis built his first car - 2-door coupe, which he called Paragon. Goertz, this vehicle is unveiled during the world exhibition in San Francisco in 1939. Unfortunately, the Earl had his passion for automobiles postponed, waiting for him for five-year military service. After returning to Los Angeles pulled out of the garage and went to Paragon him on a trip to New York. There, in the parking lot before the famous Waldorf-Astoria hotel, changed his life. "Right next to my car parked the other, just strange looking. The owner looked at me as interesting, as I am to him. It was a famous designer Raymond Loewy" - so this event years later he recalled Goertz. Loewy zaprosił Earl to his office and soon after, Albrecht began working in the design office Studebaker, Indiana.

In 1953 he was recognized designer. Then he met the main importer of BMW in America by Max Hoffmann. Hoffmann, who knew the Munich plans to build sports car company, told the leadership of BMW Goertz. In less than 18 months the count presented two projects - the beautiful sports coupe and the 507 large, elegant coupé and cabriolet 503rd

After his departure from BMW Albrecht von Goertz worked for Porsche (in the team preparing the model 911), Nissan (Silvia 1600 Sports Coupe and the Datsun 240Z) and Toyota (2000GT). Recently he helped the team projektującemu Nissan 350Z. Count Albrecht died on 27 October 2006. BMW sports stars from stage and film

Model 503 has not improved and so financially weak that is on the verge of bankruptcy BMW. It did not help the sport 507th This vehicle is manufactured in the period 1956-1959 cost 26 500 DM. One such car in white acquired during military service in Germany, Elvis Presley. He paid $ 3,500 for it. After returning to the U.S. gave them Ursula Andress, famous for playing Honey Ryder in Dr. Well, first of the films about James Bond. In 1997, this car sold at auction for 350 thousand. dollars. Style 507 had an effect on the subsequent appearance of Z8.

Albrecht von Goertz Projects are not saved by BMW. The Munich company has revived thanks to the intervention of billionaire Herbert Quandt and sales of small and cheap cars.