Even though it was a large car for its day and offered supreme levels of luxury, the BMW E38 7 series stayed true to its roots of “The Ultimate Driving Machine.” You could instantly recognize that this car was derived from sport sedans of yore, with it’s double kidney grille and four headlamp profile. In markets outside the US, this was to be the last 7 series available with a manual gearbox. In addition, BMW offered a Sport Package on the E38, as we see here with what is possibly one of the lowest mileage examples left in existence.
All posts tagged 2001
If yesterday’s pristine S4 DTM Edition with low miles got you excited, then this is probably the type of car that you’d really like to see. Normally when we’ve done Wagon Weeks, I’ve written up some of the more notable fast Audi wagons; the RS2 and the S6 Plus, for example. But today I wanted to visit a few we don’t spend so much time on – hence the S6 Avant duo from earlier. What we have here, though, is even that much more special; what is probably the best condition, most original and lowest mile Audi RS4 outside of Audi’s possession. The RS4 was an instant hit, with quattro GmbH combining forces with Cosworth to tune the engine of the B5 up to a then-staggering 375 horsepower. With beefed up bodywork covering massive wheels and tires and run through a 6-speed manual transmission, the RS4 was good to its Sport Quattro and RS2 heritage, running to 60 m.p.h. in a smashing 4.9 seconds and easily bouncing off its self-imposed 155 m.p.h. limiter. As with the RS2 and the Sport Quattro, the limited run RS4 has been the subject of many replicas, but finding a mint condition original example reminds us of how perfect the formula was:
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2001 Audi RS4 on Classic Driver
It’s time to take a moment to visit one of the enduring performance values in not only the Porsche market, but in the second-hand market in general. Just about any 911 Turbo is a hallowed performance machine that can compete with a wide variety of high-dollar supercars, yet still provide a refined driving environment for the owner seeking a relaxed cruise. That refinement wasn’t always the case with the Turbo, but Porsche’s goal has always been to showcase both sides of its engineering acumen with these cars and ever since the 993TT it has excelled in that department. Of all of the extant models the 996TT remains the least loved. The first to have a water-cooled engine combined with a somewhat wonky appearance will do that, but the performance has never really been the issue. So while the model itself loses out on the market, buyers win. Here we have a Guards Red 2001 Porsche 911 Turbo, located in Texas, with a pretty reasonable 35,924 miles on it and a 6-speed manual transmission.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2001 Porsche 911 Turbo on eBay
For some time, the B5 S4 was dismissed by a fair amount of enthusiasts as a heavy, complicated car. Truth told, the B5 seemed a bit of a let down initially compared to the already gone and instantly legendary C4 S4/S6 with the venerable inline-5 power plant. But Audi had a new range of motors when it came to the B5, and the inline-5 did not really fit under the more compact hood in the lineup. Replacing the single turbo 5-pot was a new 2.7 liter V6 with not one but two turbochargers. Despite that, performance seemed a bit tame; 250 horsepower was nothing to sneeze at, but it was only a bit more than the outgoing M3, after all. However, the B5 had a few trump cards over its competition. Of course, the major one was that quattro all-wheel drive continued to be the high-performance platform for Audi. In this guise, the lockable options were completely removed from the driver, instead having the computer’s brain work electronically locking differentials coupled with electronic stability. While the combination of these things didn’t sound like an enthusiast’s dream, out of the box the S4 was a quite competent performer. Of course, the big bonus with turbocharging was that there was a tremendous amount of performance potential on tap with some upgrades. Free up the exhaust and turn up the boost, and these Teutonic turbocharged wonders went from tame to terror. There was one other major trump card the B5 had over the competition; as with the last of the run C4 S6s, Audi finally allowed their fast wagons to come over to these shores. They were an instant hit amongst the Audi faithful, and brought many more customers over to the four rings from other marques as well. Arguably the most popular were the two wild color options; the ever popular purple-blue Norgaro Blue and the retina-searing shade of Imola Yellow. Only a reported 64 Imola Yellow Avants were imported between 2001 and 2002, making it one of the more rare B5s produced. Paired with a 6-speed manual gearbox, these Avants have stood the test of time and are still highly sought by enthusiasts:
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2001 Audi S4 Avant on eBay
The Porsche 996 is arguably the best deal going in the rear-engined Porsche world. I say arguably because there are many who utterly detest the water-cooled replacement for the venerable air-cooled 911. On top of the revision in power, the 996 power unit has come under scrutiny for potential failure of the intermediate shaft bearing. But let’s be honest for a second; Porsches are expensive cars that can be very expensive to maintain, regardless of chassis and configuration. And in terms of driving experience, the 996 was quite fun. It was not the fastest or wildest version of the 911, but in two-wheel drive Carrera form it was great fun. I was lucky enough to drive a brand new 40th Anniversary Carrera around a race track, and though it was certainly a road-biased machine, the brakes, suspension, transmission and importantly engine and soundtrack were a stirring experience. Add some real track-dedicated modifications to one, then, and it should be a great dual-purpose weapon: