Watch This 562-HP M4-Engined BMW M235i Set a ‘Ring Record…in Spite of a Bird Strike

Obstructed visibility: Less of a problem than you’d think, apparently.

byWill Sabel Courtney|
BMW News photo

German tuning house AC Schnitzer has developed quite the reputation over the years for its impressive work modifying BMWs. The company's latest project, however, has earned the tuner something extra: a new record for the fastest lap of the Nurburgring Nordschleife in a street-legal BMW. In the hands of Touring Car racing driver Markus Oestreich, AC Schnitzer's ACL2—a BMW M235i running a modified M4 engine packing 562 horsepower, and equipped with a big ol' spoiler and a widebody kit, among other mods—cracked off a 7:25.8 lap of the 'Ring.

As has become de rigueur for reputable record 'Ring runs, the AC Schnitzer crew made sure to release a video documenting the lap in full, complete with the car's telemetry and picture-in-picture to show both the track and the driver. It's an entertaining video, as most fast Nurburgring laps are; Oestreich's skill is clearly in evidence as he pushes the car through the many twists and turns of the 12.9-mile track. 

But it's right around the 3:37 mark that things take something of a macabre turn. As Oestreich is hauling ass down the track at an indicated 127 miles per hour, a bird—it looks vaguely like a pigeon in the fraction of a second we see it in one piece, but it's hard to tell—slams into the windshield. Remarkably, the glass seems to hold up with nary a crack, but the presumably-deceased bird leaves behind a messy smear of feathers, blood, and viscera. 

Even more remarkable, however, is Oestrich's lack of reaction. Especially considering his own name is one vowel away from being a type of bird itself.