BFFs: BMW M and MotoGP celebrate 20 years of beautiful safety cars

The lineup even includes a lovely Z8

BMW M safety cars are to MotoGP what Chevrolet pace cars are to the Indianapolis 500. The 2018 season marked 20 years that BMW has transformed its performance vehicles into safety cars for the MotoGP racing circuit. The BMW M5 with the Competition engine wrote the 2018 chapter in a history that shows the brand's longstanding tradition on track.

Name a recent performance car in BMW's lineup, and it's probably been a safety car at one point or another. The Z8 served in 2002. The Z4 M served in 2007. The 1-Series M captured hearts in 2011, the M4 showed out in 2015, and the M2 made its appearance in 2016. Even the SUVs and four-doors got some love, with the X6 M, the X5 M, and the M6 making appearances.

As seen in the photos, these cars aren't just rolling out of bed and moseying over to the race track. Each ride has several modifications that prepare it for safety duty. In addition to the top-mounted light bar and cool-as-hell paint scheme, the M5 has several carbon fiber body parts, a prototype front splitter, and a titanium exhaust. Several of the cars added roll cages, as well.

Check out a bunch of the safety cars, past and present, in the quick-cut video from BMW up above.

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