1983 Porsche 928S 5-Speed Euro-Spec – REVISIT

The market has spoken, and the 1983 European-spec Porsche 928S 5-speed I wrote up back in August is still available having been relisted several times. Pricing has dropped $400 to just below $10,000 since August; surprising given the perceived lack of interest over that time. While there are some issues to sort overall this still looks like a pretty decent and rare Porsche to get into with 1980s 911 prices now rapidly heading up. What price would you pay for this neat bit of Euro goodness and would you keep the 944 Turbo alloys or run the original forged “manhole covers”?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1983 Porsche 928S on eBay

The below post originally appeared on our site August 10, 2014:

1991 BMW M5 Dinan 3.9

What’s the best deal going amongst BMW M cars? One could certainly argue that it must be the E34 M5. With the classic and refined looks of the third generation 5 series comes both great build quality and legendary reliability that helped to solidify BMW’s place in the luxury market today. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that there was an equally legendary series of engines under the hood, and without a doubt the shining star of that lineup and the model range indeed was the M5 with the original S38 motor screaming its last song. Despite the rush on all things M from the 1980s and general good shape that many of the E34 Ms appear in, they’re also generally quite affordable compared to the rest of the examples of BMW Motorsport’s influence. Part of that was that the package didn’t stand out quite as much as either the E28 or E39 M5 did. It was subtle, understated and almost whisper quiet in its delivery of a performance package; out of the box, it even almost looked like it had white wall tires due to the unique two-piece M-System wheels. To solve the perceived lack of gusto compared to the competition, one could turn to BMW specialist Dinan to turn up their luxury rocket ride to 11:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1991 BMW M5 on eBay

1998 Volkswagen Jetta K2

I’m a pretty big VW nut, but when it comes to the A3 Jetta even I admit they’re just pretty darn boring. The Mk.2 Jetta had plenty of character for better or worse, but the third generation just seemed to be a bit lumpy and overweight in comparison. The crisp body lines were replaced by softer transitions that, well, just didn’t look special. And there was the engine; gone was the awesome twin-cam 16V 2.0 GLi, replaced by a single cam 2.0 8V in the normal Jettas that were snatched up by New Jersey college girls. Sure, there was the GLX VR6 model that continued the quick Jetta tradition, but it seemed that most of the time you heard a droning automatic 4-cylinder Jetta leaving the lights. And the build quality just wasn’t the best; memorably, a friend of mine purchased a brand new 1997 Jetta and I waxed it for him one day while he was at work. On my way to drop the car off, the sunroof broke in the open position. The car was two weeks old. So, it was ugly, slow and unreliable – and expensive. The normal Jetta bordered on $18,000 without many options in 1997, and the GLX model pushed you well into the 20s. Comparatively, the new Jetta stickers around $14,000 nearly two decades later. Towards the end of the A3’s run, though, Volkswagen upped the ante with some limited edition models. There was the Jetta GT, which featured 4-wheel disc brakes and fog lamps, along with a spoiler and unique alloys. But if you wanted to be the cool dude on campus, you got your parents to buy you the Jetta Trek or Jetta K2. As far as I could tell at the time, they were normal Jettas (and Golfs) with roof racks and a bike or skis/snowboard.…

Wednesday Wheels Roundup

I think it’s quite fair to say that vintage Audi parts are quite hard to come by and they’re probably the least supported aftermarket manufacturer in the realm of German cars. Compared to the amount of vintage Volkswagen, Porsche, Mercedes-Benz and BMW parts floating around, it’s just downright rare to come across period correct vintage Audi pieces. Today I’ve assembled a few rare to see bits, plus a neat and inexpensive wheel set if you’ve got a Q7. The Treser wheels are just mega-cool; directionally veined, they where cutting edge back in the early 1980s and the signature of the aftermarket tuner. Unfortunately, they’re metric sized only – so you’re going to have to pay a lot of tires, but they’re available at least. The seller’s claim that they never come up for sale is a bit off base as we typically see them about every six months, and the condition of these wheels isn’t the best – so the asking price is well out of line. However, they’re always neat to see. I’m not a fan of the styling of the Treser steering wheel but it’s period correct and different from the typical Momo or Nardi wheels. The middle wheel I’ve never seen and can’t identify; do you know the model? The Votex Q7 wheels are a twist on the normal wheels but very neat – and in this case quite cheap for a 19″ OEM wheel set. And finally, the Nardi Audi Sport wheel is one of my favorite. They’re always expensive but very cool to see and set off early B2 Audis well. Which is your favorite?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: Audi Treser 390mm TRX Wheels on eBay

Tuner Tuesday: 1995 Ruf BTR

From a poorly represented backyard creation of a tuned E28 BMW we’re heading for probably the most respected and coveted tuner in the world. Ruf cars are legendary and have been since new – grabbing headlines and turning heads wherever they go. By the 1990s, though, Ruf had some serious competition from within Porsche itself. Porsche not only had the monstrous 400 horsepower, all-wheel drive spiritual successor to the 959 in the Turbo, but it also had a stripped and widened GT2 model homologated for racing. Adding power was good, but Ruf really needed to set itself apart. The result was the wild CTR, probably the most famous of which I wrote up about a year ago. But behind the big splashing headlines of the power figures of the CTR was the successor to the Yellowbird – the BTR:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1995 Ruf BTR on eBay

Tuner Tuesday: 1988 BMW 535is Turbo

When did the BMW tuning crowd become the new Volkswagen tuning crowd? I must have missed the memo, but it appears that it certainly went out. In my search for modified cars, I come across quite a few; it seems that for every well modified car, though, there are a few examples that leave you wanting for more. More attention to detail, more refined taste, and in some cases more money spent. That money doesn’t have to be spent poorly – we’ve seen, for example, cars which aren’t the best examples but have great photographs somehow be more desirable than good examples with bad photos. Heck, in one Volkswagen post I even pointed out how the seller was at a car wash (and photographed the car there being washed – a new, and also completely pointless, Volkswagen tuning crowd trend) but then failed to vacuum the car out. Well, it would seem that some of the hallmarks of the Volkswagen crowd are spilling out into the all-too-popular 1980s BMW bandwagon. List out loud the details of this E28 and you’ll have the enthusiasts drooling; Zinnoberrot 535is with black leather, Brembo brakes, M-System II throwing stars, Bilstein and Racing Dynamics suspension, Alpina cam and cluster, and a custom 400 horsepower M30 under the hood. But in this case, I don’t think the result is greater than the sum of the parts:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 BMW 535is Turbo on eBay

Motorsports Monday: Porsche 911 Twin Turbo Cup Conversion

I’ve certainly been a big fan of the Porsche 911 Cup; today, it strikes me as not only one of the best deals going in racing Porsches, but perhaps the best all-around deal in the Motorsports world. The success of the 996 and 997 Cup chassis has to come close to the E30 M3 as one of the most raced and most winning German designs in history. They were so successful that they built a lot of them, making them today slightly devalued in the world of track cars. We’ve even seen full-blood, turn key factory race 911s up for auction below $50,000; simply staggering when you consider the original purchase price. Of course, also staggering are the running costs of the Cup cars; 40 hour engines are the max, and Porsche Motorsports recommends transmission refreshes as 20 hours. The costs add up; rebuilding your 996 or 997 Cup running gear will cost you between $15,000 and $30,000 – presuming nothing big is broken. Okay, so the purchase price is only the tip of the iceberg. But what if you took some of the aspects of the Cup design and incorporated them into the even faster and cheaper to run Turbo model?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: Porsche 911 Twin Turbo Cup Conversion on eBay

Motorsports Monday: 1974 BMW 2002

The BMW 2002 might just be the quintessential German race car. A squat 2-door sedan, it’s chunky looks match well with wide tires in a lowered race stance. The upright nature gives the driver great visibility, while short overhangs mean there’s not much to bash you and you judge where the front of the car is well. The engine is simple but effective; a torquey inline-4 that can be turned up for more juice if you’re willing to spend a little – or a lot. Of course, the manual gearbox and rear drive are enthusiast favorites. Plus, the 2002 wears the appropriate German national racing color – white – so well, it’s sometimes almost cliche but still looks great. The M-colors, though not age appropriate, always suit the design well, and of course you can just slap a set of Minilights on there. Our friends at Fast In Fast Out have a reoccurring Monday theme on Minilites, and my submission for the most frequent but never overused application of them is the 2002:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1974 BMW 2002 Race Car on eBay

1988 Mercedes-Benz 560SEC

While I’m sold that it’s worthwhile in most cases to buy a top condition car from a careful one owner home with a spotless record and no miles on the clock, there’s something that’s at least romantic about the idea of restoring a lesser example back to driving quality. In the case of some older German metal, this is certainly possible; it’s not necessarily the least frustrating way to do things, but one can take a certain amount of pride in resurrecting a car from neglected status back to the road. Today’s example is a great case in point; a W126 Mercedes-Benz is a well build, solidly engineered thing of beauty. Add the pillar-less SEC coupe to the mix and the end of the run 5.6 V8 and it’s a great combination, only heightened by the right sprinkling of AMG and Euro bits. And with a low “Buy It Now” price, this 1988 has me dreaming of a winter project:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Mercedes-Benz 560SEC on eBay

Baby It’s Cold Outside – 10K Friday AWD-Off

Maybe you’re lucky, and it’s sunny and warm where you’re reading this. Or, perhaps you’re stuck under a rock – or in the case of Buffalo, several feet of snow. But like it or not, winter is upon us a bit early this year, and if you are in Buffalo you probably need some sort of snow-cat to get to the local store. Hopefully, that’s not the case for most of you but I wondered what sort of all-wheel drive car you could get on a $10,000 budget. As it turns out, you might be able to get a little more than you expected – so here’s a few offerings from the different manufacturers, starting with the folks that started it all:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Audi A4 3.0 quattro on eBay