How low would you go? Bargain-ready 1988 BMW M3

I rarely consider myself old enough to say “back in the day…!”, but I’ve been watching E30 M3 prices for over a decade and can sadly say that I’ve seen prices for decent ones nearly double. Well, it must be Memory Monday because there’s an M3 for sale starting at $8,000. It’s reasonably clean and well-maintained, but even the most well-maintained car get a little rough around the edges after a quarter million miles. I can’t say how much work is in there before it’s 100%. It could live a little longer, or it could be time for a rebuild ASAP. Either way, it’s important to keep these things on the road, and I think someone could get a start on this one for significantly less than the normal price of entry.

From the seller:

She has had a good run but it is time for her to move to a new home. I have owned her since 1999 or so. I am the third owner. I bought her with about 89k miles on her. I have a complete history to include the dock inspection but I do not have the window sticker. I have receipt for parts purchases and a composition book listing her history of service and repairs. All maintenance since I have owned her has been done by me. She was in two accidents:

· 2000 (or so) – Rear ended by a Corolla and pushed into a Supra. No major damage. Complete front bumper replaced and rear bumper repainted. All bumper shocks were replaced. At that time I also had the mirrors and rockers re-sprayed because when I bought the car it had the notorious red faded paint on those plastic parts.
· 2001 (or so) – Backed into by a hit and run driver while parked on the street in DC. Damage was scratch on the hood and the passenger front fender dented just where it curves to meet the front grill. The fender was replaced because the dent was on a crease and the hood was re-painted.

Modifications:

· Bilstein Sport Shocks w/Ground control coil-over conversion. OE front spring perches were never removed in the event I want to go back to stock springs. Rear springs are now 6” not the 5” that came originally with the kit.
· RD rear shock tower tie bar.
· BMP front Shock tower brace.
· Eclipse head unit with stock BMW amp and speakers. The original head unit comes with the car.
· OZ Mito 17 by 8.5, 13mm offset wheels ( 215/40s front & 235/40s rear – Yokohama S.Drive) . Wheels purchased from Mr. BBS. Still in good shape to be 10s a re-polish and centers re-sprayed or powder coated.
· Front aggregate guard. E30 Motor Werks Severe Duty Skid Plate. Installed after a lower pan pucker… just enough to leak oil when car was not running. Yes, the lower pan was replaced.
· Raven (Dimoff) track exhaust w/DTM tips… Loud!
· Will Chu – FG brake ducts
· HID low beams
· French (Yellow) high beams
· Sport EVO grills (Kopi)
· Smoked front signal lenses (not painted)
· Rear fog bulbs wired as additional brake lights.
· Delrin shift knob
· Short shift BavAuto
· Battery cut-off switch. Mounted on battery cover.
· Remote jump cable connection with large AMP connector with matching 12 foot heavy gauge jumper cables.
· Conforti chip
· Etc…

Current state:

· Back in November I think I burned a valve on cylinder #4. Compression numbers were 195, 200, 150 and gauge flutter… I have not opened the engine. She still will run but sounds like a flat-four with exhaust.
· A/C stopped working just at the end of the summer. I never diagnosed it. I know the compressor needs the mounting bushings which I have.
· There is a little rush on the cowl near the wipers. I also know there is some in the front jack pad region and rear of the rear wheel houses.
· Sunroof was replaced with a painted unit form Vintage Sport Racing.
· She has her second rear wing. The clear just cracked dead center…
· Both mirrors have seen better days. They could stand a repaint. Again clear coat issues.
· Interior is in great shape. The driver seat has the most wear on that outer bottom bolster.

The bidding hasn’t kicked in yet, but starting at $8,000 for the M, the myth, the legend sounds like we’re partying before the new millennium.

-NR

1985 Mercedes 540SEC AMG Rare widebody find

I had only days earlier posted over on another blog about how rare the AMG 5.4 liter engine is and then this one shows up on eBay.

The car is in New Zealand now and has 51,000 miles, which is pretty low. It looks like it had been living in Japan, despite being left hand drive. It looks black in the photos, but the data plate paint code shows blauschwarz / midnight blue.

It has all the right AMG parts, the widebody kit, the fat AMG Penta wheels, the correct AMG 300 km/h speedo, steering wheel, and trunk badge. It even has the AMG exhaust including headers. The widebody kit will catch the average car guy’s eye, but the small blacked out 5.4 badge on the trunk will really turn the head of a Mercedes enthusiast. You will be hard pressed to find many Benzs out their wearing that badge. Interestingly the data plate on the car lists the code for the stock trunk badge delete so it may this car was destined from birth to get the AMG treatment.

The current owner has spent some big time dollars to get the car sorted since his purchase of $21,000 in 2009. He states it has $10,000 worth of new electrics, rubber, paint, and other detailing.

The seller includes numbers for those of you looking to verify:
VIN # WDB1260441A179770
Chassis # 1260441A179770
Engine # 117963 12 084502
Transmission # 722311 02 674399

The car is sitting at $9,300 with less than a day to go.

There is also a video of this car online here:

 

There are a couple of videos of other 5.4 liter AMG engined SECs online:

~Evan

1986 Volkswagen Scirocco 16V with 46k miles

We’ve featured a few clean Scirocco’s lately, however, I was thinking to myself the other day that it has been a while since I’ve seen a relatively clean MkII Scirocco 16V. Thanks to our reader Larry for pointing out this clean MkII on cars.com. Other than the overkill stereo, this particular Scirocco looks relatively unmolested.

1986 Volkswagen Scirocco 16V with 46k miles on Cars.com

The seller states:

IMMACULATE 16 Valve Scrirroco that you MUST see to believe!!! ONLY 46K miles. 99 Percent stock with the exception of upgraded audio. Great driver and/or show car!!!

Purists may appreciate the Mk1 Scirocco better, but I always preferred the rounded edges of the MkII better, much in the way I preferred the last of the Alfa Romeo Spiders they sold here in the US. Given that Volkswagen won’t import the new Scirocco to our shores, here’s your chance to relive a little bit of that magic, albeit at a higher price one would expect.

-Paul

1975 Mercedes Benz 450SLC Euro

The difference between Euro and U.S. Domestic market Mercedes can be dramatic or subtle depending on how you look at cars. 70s Mercedes headlights look pretty different with the U.S. cars having circle sealed beams in vertical or horizontal quads and Euros having single lens flat face lights. This Euro 450SLC has the complete Euro package, minus the KPH speedo.

What sets this apart outside of it being Euro and in very clean all around shape, is that it is a no reserve auction with a reasonable start price, our favorite type of sale here on GCFSB. The 90,437 car sits at just under $3,500 as of now.

The mileage shouldn’t be a big deterrent. The seller doesn’t say much about service history, but it looks like they cared for it well. I’d rather take a good looking, well maintained high mileage Benz then one with lower miles that has had deferred maintenance and is being sold just as the shop bills are about to stack up. The inside looks very nice, white is hard to keep looking that clean after 36 years, I suspect it may have been redone at some point.

The car has some modern add-ons. The newer AMG chrome rims don’t look too out of place as the 450SLC does have a lot of shiny chrome. I could take it or leave it on them. The previous owner has also added chrome door sills, a popular after market choice on SLs of this era, but these are etched with the AMG logo. The trunk lid also has a modern AMG logo that looks a bit out of place. The rear spoiler could be factory or a later add-on. It is period correct. These are minor nitpicks overall this car presents very well. I’ve said this before I’m not a convertible guy so I always prefer the look of the SLC models over the open top SL models, particularly SLs with only a soft-top.

A nice piece of machinery that will sell at fair market value.

 

~Evan

1991 BMW M5

Of all the generations of M5s that have come and gone, the E34 is my favorite, even over the considerably faster V8 powered E39. The current E60 never did anything for me and it remains to be seen how good the upcoming F10 will be. The E34 just embodies the peak of BMW styling mixed with their fantastic, breathed on straight six engine. Here is a relatively low mileage 1991 E34 out in the midwest. It’s a bit rough around the edges, but generally looks sound.

Up for auction is a rare 1991 BMW M5. These cars were handbuilt in Germany and there are not too many around these days. The car has 89,000 miles, is a two owner car, and has full service history.

Now the car is not concourse ready but a nice example for someone who wants an everyday driver or too spend a little time on it and make it perfect. The car has spent its life in the midwest so there are a couple of spots were rust has formed on the bottom of the doors and the door seams(see pics). Has had some paintwork (20 year old car), all panels are original except it does have a r-dot hood.

Mechanically the car feels very solid and strong. The transmission has no syncro issues and the clutch feels tight and it pulls hard, the car starts right up and the engine is strong. I do have a extra set of snow tires and BBS rims that do come with the car that in my opinion look better than than the factory wheels(forgot to take pic).

The interior is in good shape for a car of this age but does need some work to be perfect. The drivers bolster is torn and missing a chunk of foam. the rest of the seats are good but could use a dye job. The rugs are clean. All power options seem to work fine.

The asking price is hovering right around the clean retail mark at $10,000, however, knock a grand or two off the price and this would be a decent value. The one thing that puts me off is the light colored leather. I had a friend with a 1992 325i with the same interior color and as it ages, it looks awful. Too bad it’s not a darker gray or black. Still though, a solid looking example of one of the M division’s finest.

-Paul

Exceptional 1986 BMW 325es for sale

The same friend mentioned in the ’74 911 post drove a 325e in college. Though disadvantaged with the “efficient” 2.7L M20 (producing 21 fewer horses than the 318is and 47 less than the 325is), it was a great look at how fun even slow E30s can be. The 1986-only 325es mixed the weakest engine with the best suspension, which isn’t a bad choice for an E30 enthusiast who does a lot of miles. Today’s example is about as clean as 80s Bimmers come and uses a Turner Motorsports chip and H&R springs to make this a truly exceptional “efficiency” model.

Popular but surely taking a price hit because it’s “is” has an “e” in it, 19 bids have it at just $3,750 with 3 days left. This could be the perfect E30 daily driver: 120k miles, fun in the twisties, good on the highway, and one-more-look gorgeous. I love the immaculately redone interior, clean respray, and aggressive stance from the 16″ BBS and H&R. Anything less than $6k and this is a steal.
-NR

1989 Volkswagen Vanagon with Subaru 3.3 flat six

It seems to be a growing trend to take a run of the mill, underpowered Volkswagen Vanagon and swap a Subaru engine in it. We featured a Volkswagen T2 Transporter with a Subaru 2.5 RS motor last month, however, here is a different beast. A Vanagon with the Subaru 3.3 liter flat six motor. While the body has high mileage on it, the owner has clearly invested the time and money to make this a special van.

The seller states:

1989 Volk Wolfsburg 3.3 liter Subaro 6 cyl 235 hp. Over $35,000 invested to build this one of a kind van!

70,000 miles on Subaru motor, approx 15,000 on all new suspension brakes and transmission

Interior upgrades:

Speaker upgrades
New carpet
Newly upholstered front seats
Absolutely no rust, an original california car!

Exterior:

Tinted windows
Keyless entry with alarm

Mechanical:

All upgrades done by EuroTech San Diego, The Vanagon Subaru Engine Conversion Specialist.
Big brake upgrade: Cross drilled front rotors with audi 200 turbo quattro front break calipers and Mercedes ML 320 brake rotors. Rear disk brake conversion using Audi 200 turbo quattro break calipers and rotors. Both front and rear brakes have akebono ceramic brake pads for improved braking and low dusting.
Stage 2 heavydut clutch
Short shifter kit, Go westy
White face gauges
Taller 3rd and 4th gear ratios
HID headlight conversion
17′ Audi wheels. Custom machined center caps
Tires, 5,000 miles

I’m not a van guy, but I like off beat vehicles and this one fits the bill. While Porsche made a version of the Vanagon called the B32 with a flat six, the Subaru engine would no doubt last a good while longer and quite possibly could deliver better gas mileage. If I had a family to haul around, SUVs be damned. This refridgerator-esque van is just what the doctor ordered.

-Paul

1987 Porsche 959

The Porsche 959 was one of the most legendary vehicles from the 1980s, if not the past century. Born out of the homologation rules of Group B rallying, the 959 enjoyed a four year production run and paved the way for future all wheel drive 911 models. The 959 was also steeped in controversy, as many folks tried, unsuccessfully to import them to the U.S., including Microsoft founder Bill Gates. Canepa Design eventually developed a modification package that included a reworked turbo, engine management system and exhaust, allowing the 959 to be road legal.

There is no telling whether this particular 959 is one of those U.S. legal examples, but these come up for sale too seldom, making it worth the feature.

The seller states:

1987 Porsche 959 supercar.

This is a rare one owner collectible, imported directly from Germany 1988 and kept in a private collection till now.

All service up to 5600 miles done by Stuttgurt Porsche factory, and it has only 7,800 miles. The paint still looks new and the interior is like a new car condition, a beatiful black leather.

This car comes with all books and tools from factory. Once it was over $1 million and it could go back sometime ……..it certainly a rare jewelry for a real Porsche enthusiast to own.

In total, there were 337 959s ever built, and prices reflect their rarity, accordingly. They are still relatively young in terms of a classic car and values seem to be all over the map. Originally costing $225,000 when new, Bonhams sold one for $204,000 back in 2004, and reports have it that Jerry Seinfeld had bought one for $700,000. The asking price of $375,000 seems to be right around the midpoint of the few I spotted for sale online recently.

In case you missed it, Top Gear recently featured the 959 alongside its contemporary, the Ferrari F40, in their last season:

-Paul

No-reserve 1974 Porsche 911 for sale in honor of our “barn find”

My best friend lives in Washington now, having departed California about a year ago to return to our childhood home. His parents still live there, and we have long dreamed of commandeering their underused German treasures: a 1987 VW Westfalia, and the S-ified version subject of today’s 1974 Porsche 911. The Westy is in pretty good shape, but unfortunately the white 911S has been woefully neglected in the garage, its 30k-mile rebuild going unappreciated and the body wilting with rust. It has now been bequeathed to said friend though, and as funds allow, a rejuvenation is planned.

The mid-year 911s are not as desirable as the 69-73s with their crash bumpers and impending emissions-choking equipment, though the latter was thankfully postponed until the 1975 model year. Porsche integrated the bumpers better than most, and the new 2.7L flat-6 put out 150hp normally and 173hp in S trim – enabling the 2300 lb car to be quick even by today’s standards (GTI quick, mind you- not 911 quick). So, these ’74s may not be the ultimate collector’s wet dream, but they’re good enough for me, having pulled me from my Audis and BMWs and leaving me chomping at the bit for my first 911 experience. Today from eBay we have a beautifully clean, 60k mile 911, and I’m getting excited.

The seller has written some nice history and details, but it’s best summed up by this:

This early edition 2.7-liter Porsche 911, unencumbered by power-sapping emissions systems, featuring a rust free pan and a most striking color combination, must be one of the best values to be found in the vintage Porsche marketplace today.

The no-reserve auction is just over $10k at time of writing with a week left. I’m not experienced enough with the sensitive subject of vintage 911 pricing to make a true estimate, but the price could go up quite a bit and I’d still consider this a fun and relatively inexpensive entry into the car, the myth, the legend that is 911.

I’m ready to visit home and start wrenching.

-NR

Lust-worthy CLK63 AMG Black Series for sale

No massive back story here, it’s pretty simple: my european car came today featuring a modified CLK63 AMG Black Series and I can’t get it off my mind. I re-watched the unrivaled Top Gear segment and had to live the dream the only way I can: eBay ads. It’s simplicity, audacity, and brutality make it perhaps the most lust-worthy post-1980s car I can think of. I want it, and I want to rage in it.

So how to rationalize this dark fantasy? Well, I certainly can’t in my current paygrade, but if I were in the position to spend $70k or more on a sports car, I would overlook the newer M3, the RS5, R8, CTS-V, GTR, the myriad 911s, etc. etc. as they are positively weaksauce compared to this… this is the kind of unique, raw, incredible German machine that I would choose. It’s badass in a way the Aston Martin Vantage V8 only wishes it could be. All 18,600 of glorious driving miles are at around $50k at time of writing with 4 days left; other buy-it-nows range from $75-90k. I’d give organs to have this car in the garage.

-NR