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Classic BMW 503: Speed, Power, and Rarity

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Topics:  BMW 503

Classic BMW 503: Speed, Power, and Rarity

William Jason
SubmitYOURArticle.com
March 27, 2011

William Jason http://musclecarmonster.com

One of the best classic cars produced by well-know car maker BMW is the BMW 503. The 503 is a two door 2+2 sports car first unveiled in 1955 Frankfurt Motor Show and was mass produced in the summer of 1956. After three years worth of production run, the BMW 503 was finally withdrawn, creating only around 413 cars including 139 cabriolets. Because of its stylish design and its very limited number, the BMW 503 is now considered a classic car. Incidentally, it is also one of the most sought after classic cars today, not just because of its looks, but also because of its power and performance.

The BMW 503 was designed by well know car designer, Albrecht von Goertz, with the help of preliminary drafts prepared by Kurt Bredschneider. The initial design though, would have made the BMW 503 look more flamboyant, because it incorporates rounded mudguards similar to its predecessor, the BMW 502 sedan. It should also be considered that such a look isn't really a rarity during that time, because car makers are trying to attract more buyers with cars that look different from the rest. However, the original design for the 503 was not followed because it didn't fit with the automotive regulations on light positioning, and several other concerns. But with the changed design, the look of the BMW 503 puts it well ahead of its time, because it had a relatively futuristic appearance from its square cornered look and fully integrated wings.

As mentioned earlier, the BMW 503 is one of the most sought after classic cars because of its power and performance. This car incorporated a revolutionary 3168 cc light metal v8 engine from its BMW 502 predecessor. This application easily delivers a power output of around 140 brake horsepower. It is also quite the speed demon, accelerating from standstill to 100 km/h or 62 mph in just 13 seconds. The top speed of this classic car is also quite outstanding, which is around 115 miles per hour or 185 km/h. This car has a four speed manual transmission, also carried over from the BMW 502. This was originally mounted remotely from the engine and rear axle, a design that's unique for the 502 and 503. These power and speeds are not common to cars during those times, so when the BMW 503 came along, it is easily regarded as one of the kings of the road. Coupled with its rarity, the BMW 503 is indeed a full pledged classic car.

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William Jason has admired classic cars ever since he was a young child and you can read his blog at: http://musclecarmonster.com/

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