While the BMW No.25 remains in podium contention in third place, the Bobby Rahal-run team had a drama overnight with the No.100 entry.
At 3 a.m., on lap 360, the No. 100 M6, with Lucas Luhr behind the wheel, suffered a heavy crash in turn one, impacting the front and rear of the car.
Luhr was unhurt, but the damage from the suspected mechanical failure forced the team to retire the car from the race.
“Something failed, but I don’t know what exactly,” Luhr said.
“There was some kind of explosion at the front right that made the bonnet go up, so I couldn’t see where I was going. I had two or three good hits.
“My best guess is the right brake disc exploded. It’s a shame because we were running well and we were right there in the hunt. It is just a shame for all the guys with a new car that had such a good performance for the first time running and they don’t get rewarded.”
The No.25 machine was third with four hours and 17 minutes to go with Dirk Werner at the wheel. The line-up in the “retro livery” M6 also includes Bill Auberlen, Augusto Farfus and DTM ace, Canadian, Bruno Spengler.
“We had to change brakes twice, so at the moment we have to see how the race develops,” Spengler said.
“We are a little bit slower than the competition, but we are hanging in there . We have to carry on pushing and carry on doing the job we are doing now.
“I think everything can still happen, it is still a very long race and there is still a lot of stuff that can happen during the race. The team is doing a great job on strategy and at the end it is up to the traffic you get, but you have to get through it.”