1979 BMW M1 Art CarEnlarge Photo
Finding an original BMW M1 up for sale is already next-to-impossible, though there are some around as we’ve seen in the past.
But just imagine how rare it would be to come across the actual 1979 BMW M1 Art Car on the selling block.
Well, the Guggenheim Museum in New York sold an original 1979 BMW M1 Art Car recently to raise funds and to clear up some room for other exhibits, and today we can report that the car has been bought and will be staying in New York.
The car has been bought by Jonathan Sobel, owner of BMW of Southampton and an avid art collector. Sobel purchased it at a Bonhams auction during the 2011 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance back in August and now plans to showcase it in his Southampton dealership.
As previously reported, the German supercar was painted by American artist Frank Stella and has been in procession of the Guggenheim since 1999.
Commissioned in 1979, the car was painted to Stella's "Polar Coordinates" design and created for Stella's close friend, race-car driver Peter Gregg. This was the only time that a BMW-commissioned artist created a car for anyone other than the manufacturer itself.
The "Polar Coordinates" design is based on a series of prints that Stella made in homage to his friend, Swedish driver Ronnie Peterson, who passed away during the 1978 Italian Grand Prix.
Fortunately, the BMW Art Car tradition lives on, the most recent being the Jeff Koons BMW M3 GT2 Art Car.