19-Year-Old BMW M3 Driver Jailed for Hitting 176 MPH on Oregon Highway

The driver allegedly admitted to going even faster, too.

byJames Gilboy|
2016 BMW M3
BMW, Washington County Sheriff

The driver of a 2016 BMW M3 (F80) has been jailed after being accused of driving 176 mph just outside Portland, OR. They may have been traveling even faster too, as they reportedly admitted during their arrest.

In a release issued by the Washington County Sheriff, the incident was reported to have taken place at 12:32 am on Wednesday, May 17. A sheriff's deputy situated on Interstate 5 near Highway 217 in the southern Portland metropolitan area clocked the incoming BMW at 176 mph using a laser speed gun. The deputy reported the vehicle to dispatch and called for assistance.

Lidar speed gun reading from the arrest. Washington County Sheriff

Approximately 2.5 miles down the highway, another deputy saw the car take the exit for Nyberg Street. Both deputies caught up to the car and boxed it in to prevent its escape. They arrested the 19-year-old driver for reckless driving and locked them in the Washington County Jail.

During the arrest, the driver allegedly admitted to exceeding the speed measured by deputies, reportedly stating they saw the speedometer read 183 mph. This would indicate the F80 M3 was modified; most examples are electronically limited to 155 mph, and the M Driver's package only raised its top speed to 174. Reaching the 176 reportedly measured—or the 183 the driver allegedly admitted to—indicates the car's limiter was stripped, and that its 3.0-liter, twin-turbo inline-six may have been modified for additional power.

While reaching those speeds is reckless on what's often a heavily trafficked road, the car will likely not be subject to civil forfeiture. Oregon law dictates vehicle seizures can only occur in the case of severe repeat offenses, such as intoxicated driving or causing fatal crashes. High-speed chases are not listed as justification for confiscating a vehicle.

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