M-Fest is Back!
The M-Festival is one of the biggest motoring celebrations in our nation, and it’s a special one. Portraying the latest and greatest from the German brand, which has a colossal following, it’s no surprise that tickets for the weekend at a rate resembling a true M.
This year’s iteration was particularly special as it celebrates the 50th anniversary of the most powerful letter in the alphabet, M. Along with this incredible milestone, a new car was unveiled to the world at Kyalami. It’s had the world in disagreement as the leaked images of this car were not greatly received by the motoring public. The M2 was displayed to the world, and I must say I’m relieved, but ill touch on that in a bit.
Firstly I need to tell you about the festival itself. M-Fest displays the latest machines this German manufacturer produces and celebrates how far they have come. One of the more memorable parts of the festival was an M3 showcase, which housed one of each M3 model produced. They also gave the fans a showcase of all the latest performance cars, including the M8. Patrons willing to wait in line were also afforded the opportunity to experience these cars in action, riding shotgun in their vehicle of choice.
Besides the thrill of the track experiences, guests were also given a chance to drive some of the less powerful BMWs around the handling track. Arguably the most exciting part of the event was the drifting shows performed by the incredible Hountondji Brothers. They ripped their heavily modified M4 Competitions around the drift section, delighting spectators with sideways finesse and burning rubber.
As you may already know, SA’s very own Sheldon vd Linde took the world DTM title in his Schubert Motorsport BMW M4 race car. So I can’t say I was surprised when Sheldon joined us at the festival and the launch of the M2. I was fortunate enough to be driven around Kyalami with Sheldon in an M5 Competition which, as you can imagine, was a great privilege. The way the world champ feeds the car into each corner, it’s like watching an artist paint. It was a treat, to say the least.
Back to the BMW M2, and, well, it’s one of my personal favourites in the M fleet. The leaked images of the new M2 had me a little concerned, if I’m honest – it didn’t exactly do the car any justice. However, to my relief, the new M2 is hot, at least in my opinion. Yes, it looks a little unconventional and maybe odd, but that’s why I like this new car so much. It has a front end which is rather potent and requires a unique taste, but you’ll be able to notice it in traffic a mile away. It sticks out, and that unique styling is why I’m a fan. We will see the M2 make its way to our shores next year, but in the meantime, this little monster makes 343 kW and punches its way to 100 km/h, just in case you were wondering.
We also saw the M4 CSL and the MX for the first time on our shores which was extraordinary. The M4 CSL is the faster production BMW for sale at the moment despite looking rather understated compared to its performance output, yet I think that’s why it’s so popular. Unfortunately, the M4 CSL is already sold out in Mzansi, so be sure to keep an eye out for it, as they are few and far between. The BMW MX is an interesting new product from BMW and is designed to take on cars like the G-Class. It’s placed in a rather peculiar market and is aimed at being a status piece rather than a generic SUV. It looks unique and futuristic, and I’ll be moving out of its way if I see it in my mirrors.
To no surprise, the BMW M-Fest was a massive success and provided the passionate public with the day out they had been waiting for. With adrenaline-fuelled rides, to the latest models on sale and a smorgasbord of activities In between. It was so crazy that even Jason Goliath dressed as a traditional German to immerse himself in the experience. It was a weekend for the enthusiast, so be sure not to miss it next year.