A prime example of what was yet to come from M.
BMW wanted to prove to the world it was a true high-performance sports car company when it set out to build the M1. Europeans were already aware of BMW's racing triumphs, but it was time for the rest of the world, mainly the US, to get in on the fun. So the best way to showcase its know-how was to build a high-performance sports car. But it wasn't so simple. Originally a joint project with Lamborghini, BMW was forced to go at it alone after the former ran into financial troubles.
Fortunately, the M1 project was completed and today the car is not only extremely rare (just 456 were built) but it's also achieved icon status.