While BMW was a well-known name throughout Germany in the 1960s thanks to their prolific motorcycle history and pre-War exploits in the Mille Miglia and other sports car races with the 328, outside of Germany they remained fairly unknown in the 1960s. Indeed, in the late 1950s or early 1960s, if you asked someone to identify where the kidney grills belonged in Britain, they’d probably point you towards the BMW-derived Bristols of the day – straight copies of some of the first post-war BMWs, right down to the grill. So in the 1960s and 1970s, BMW went racing to try to spread the reputation of their engineering out of motorcycles or perhaps some veiled World War airplane references with their “New Class” sedans. It was independent tuners like Schnitzer and Alpina that first really started to get the small sedans noticed in Touring classes. While the large coupe based upon the New Class design wasn’t raced much in its day – efforts instead focusing on the smaller, lighter and similarly powered sedans – it’s none-the-less exciting to see a 2000CS that has been modified in the style of the period racers:
All posts in Alpina
Despite all the uproar surrounding E30 M3s and their astonishing rise to collectability, the Alpina varieties seem to remain somewhat obscure, if not sedentary. It’s shocking to me, because anything Alpina-blessed is usually rarer and far more exclusive, and in most cases, a performance-enhanced version of the stock car it is based on. Take, for example, this 1987 C2 2.7 available in the U.K. It’s got everything you could want in an E30 – rare sport cloth interior, Alpina steering wheel and alloys, more aggressive stance, etc. And in the words of the seller, “It’s bored out to 2.7, gas flowed head, mahle pistons, Alpina camshaft, Alpina ECU, Alpina suspension, Alpina exhaust and the awesome body kit.” Even better is knowing it left the factory as a 325is, and then went straight to Alpina for the upgrades – with only 159 made, one of the chosen few.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 BMW Alpina C2 2.7 on PistonHeads
While we usually don’t like to show cars that are not at least good examples of the respective marques that they represent, occasionally some oddballs pop up that are just too good to pass up. Today is such a case, with two unique vehicles popping up on Ebay that rarely get seen at all. Unfortunately, both are in need of a fair amount of work, so depending on your comfort level I wouldn’t really consider either of these cars a turn key, collector vehicle as they stand. However, with the right about know-how, determination and a fair amount of work I think both of these cars could be resurrected to their former glory; certainly, both would bring smiles at shows wherever they went. Let’s look first at the rare duck of the two, the Bitter SC:
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1985 Bitter SC on eBay
A few months’ ago, I got wind of E24 Alpina rotting in a salvage yard in northern New England. Despite trekking across broken roads and through desolate towns, my excitement was tempered by the words, “We crushed that years ago.” Damn near crushed my soul, those words. This 1989 Alpina B10 is a far happier case of preservation and meticulous ownership, right down to the original floor mats and a rear seat that appears unused. Some pundits call it “…one of the best turbocharged engines ever”, and with 360 b.h.p. on tap, there’s plenty of power to go around. Despite a projected cost to develop of $3.2 million (in 1980s dollars), the B10 established the E34 chassis as one of Alpina’s greatest successes in its history, and this car is an impeccable specimen with only 41,000 miles. If you have to own one, it’s hard to go wrong with the one up for grabs at 4Star Classics.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 BMW Alpina B10 Bi-Turbo For Sale at 4Star Classics
Time for another parts roundup, and today I’m focusing on some aftermarket and rare parts. There are some really desirable pieces here, and some pretty horrible looks (I’m looking at you, Kamei). What’s your favorite, what would you like on your ride or what would you like to see?