Fans of the BBC motoring show Top Gear are familiar with the travails the show has gone through over the years and I assume are aware of its current status due principally to Jeremy Clarkson’s constant ability to cause problems. Always found in the midst of Jeremy’s bellowing and Hammond’s whining stood James May, otherwise known as Captain Slow. As a constant source of jabs from his two ridiculous co-presenters, May provided balance to the show, but behind the staid exterior was a genuine motoring enthusiast who has owned a number of interesting, and fast, cars and bikes over the years. Some of his machines have made appearances on Top Gear itself, while others have appeared in separate one-off shows he has been a part of during his Top Gear tenure. One of those, his Guards Red 1984 Porsche 911 Carrera Coupe with just under 55K kilometers on it, will be put up for auction at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed on Friday, June 26. Among cars with famous owners this Carrera is somewhat unique in that it is currently owned by James rather than being a car that is an owner or two removed from its famous owner’s stewardship. For fans of the show, that makes this low-mileage Carrera just that extra bit more special.
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E23s are pretty sweet luxury cruisers, starting the long line of BMW’s 7-series that have provided a sportyish option for businessfolk. While the E38 was the pinnacle and rumors of an M7 seem to have a little more traction than ever before, the original badass was the turbocharged 745i. With the exception of South Africa’s 745i which featured the M5’s M88 engine, the M106 turbocharged the venerable M30 3.4-liter inline-6, giving a healthy power and torque boost for the big poppa. This example doesn’t have the incredible water buffalo leather interior, but it does have lots of chrome – all the way to the wheel arches. The M106 can’t be the easiest engine to maintain, but 136k miles and no reserve, this could be a nice shot at an old-school Euro megasedan.
Click for details: 1984 BMW 745i on eBay
Yesterday’s Rabbit was an interesting case of many good ingredients not necessarily making a good cake; or, at the very least, not an appropriately priced cake. I really wanted to like the car but even outside of the price there was just too much to get me really excited about it. Amazingly, at the same time as that car is listed, we have an interesting counterpoint of a Mk.1 to consider. This example started life as an actual GTi, so it automatically has a leg up – at least in theory – from the ’78 Rabbit that was used to create a GTi. It’s also been completely redone, and also themed with a Euro-feel, though this car has a completely different ethos even outside of the color. Under the hood we find a Mk.4-spec 1.8T mill, complete with transmission, gauges, harness, radio and immobilizer transplanted into this original hot hatch. The price? If you have to ask….
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1984 Volkswagen GTi 1.8T on eBay
The Jetta GLI has always been a object of desire for me. While the GLI really gained fame with the Mk2 generation, it was a final-year offering on the excellent first-gen sedan, bringing most of the GTI goodies to the 3-box setup. This red example has been with the same owner for the last 15 years and is looking pretty darn good on BBS 3-piece rims with what look to be like-new Euro bumpers and front lip. The interior also looks outstanding for being over 30 years old, but a few blemishes inside and out keep this from being a perfect package. A small rust spot, mismatched tires, and paint issues on the roof are all fixable but indicate the projects will continue.
Click for details: 1984 Volkswagen Jetta GLI on eBay
With time many things can be mended. So just because a car was not available in our market during its years of production doesn’t mean that those same cars will never be available. Such is the case with the Porsche 930, which took a hiatus from US shores beginning in 1980 only to return in 1986. For fans of Porsche’s top model those years must have seemed an eternity. All we had were posters and our imagination. European owners suffered no such issues and by 1984 the 930 was sending 330 hp to those wide rear tires, making for pulse-quickening performance that required constant attention and offered numerous rewards for those capable of exploiting its massive performance potential. RoW cars possess a certain allure to many buyers as they possess a uniqueness that is difficult to capture and that allure always is enhanced when the car in question was not available in the US market. Thankfully the days of the 930’s absence have passed and those European models now can be found Stateside along with many examples of the original US market cars. Here we have one such European example: a Guards Red 1984 Porsche 930 Coupe, located in New York, with just 34,721 miles on it.