Much like the 2003 BMW 540i M-Sport we saw over the weekend, the BMW E28 535is was a bit of junior M5. It featured many of the same styling cues along with sport seats and sports suspension. This was one of the last E28s to appear before the E34 5 series took over, being offered for the 1987 and 1988 model years. This particular 535is for sale in Texas has the desirable 5-speed gearbox and while it isn’t perfect, it has potential and looks mean sitting on 17″ BBS wheels.
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The eta-engined BMWs from the late-80s may be maligned, as are automatic BMWs in general, for placing comfort and efficiency above sportiness – a confusing conflict for the Ultimate Driving Machine. As the 80s drift further into our collective rearview mirror, however, any clean example deserves plenty of love. This 528e has survived beautifully with just a few blemishes over almost 30 years and has tons of life left after just 113k miles. Please, someone, buy this as a daily driver or a first car for your kid and keep the E28 population living strong!
Click for details: 1986 BMW 528e on eBay
I may be in the minority that love the big-bumpered US-spec E28 M5, but I can’t deny how sweet the M535i is. It may be down about 35hp to the US M5 and almost 70 to the European models and lack the hand-built allure, but one look at this outstanding Zinnoberrot example and all that seems to become less important. The bodykit extends down while the small bumpers keep things tight, then beautiful black-centered BBS rims sync up perfectly with the Shadowline trim. We saw another red, right-hand drive M535i from Florida a few months back, but this car definitely has a different VIN and really shows what a clean interior and the right wheels can do for a car. Maybe some wannabe Sultan of Brunei Florida weirdo has just been sitting on a garage full of these? If so, he may want to wait a little longer as these are one of the few M-badged 80s Bimmers that are having a tough time cracking $10k.
Click for details: 1985 BMW M535i on eBay
When buying an E28, there’s an amazing breadth of options when it comes to style, approach, and history. Some go with the M5, an epic and significant performance sedan that comes with steep prices and even steeper maintenance costs. Some look to the affordable and classy daily drivers out there, highlighting the simple sportiness of this great mid-size generation. Somewhere in between, there are some fantastic modified examples, whether they’ve been turbo’d, Euro’d, or all of the above. Today’s E28 wears the sharp exterior of a Euro M5 with its slight bumpers, clean foglight setup and 80s-tastic trunk spoiler. The seller, a strong member of the MyE28 forum and owner of both an E28 M5 and Hartge H5S, has spared few expenses. Beyond the full Euro conversion, the all-black interior is redone including a leather dash, undergone a nice repaint, the M30 was rebuilt just over 30k miles ago, and much more. Despite the beautiful looks, excellent attention to detail, and a very reasonable price, he’s had a surprisingly tough time finding a new home for it.
Click for details: 1987 BMW 535i on eBay
Most E28 M5s have experienced some level of modification, whether it’s removing the self-leveling rear suspension, adding a chip and exhaust, or getting a little crazy with more displacement out of the S38. There are plenty of tuner options out there, but Dinan is one of the most respected names out there and this owner went to town with their catalogue. The usual suspects are all there from chip to short shift kit to intake, but one of the more interesting mods is the SLS upgrade by Dinan as opposed to the more common complete removal. It also has some amazing, blocky Dinan 5-spokes, which remind me a lot of Ruf’s classic rims. It all adds up to a modified M5 that appears loved rather than abused and looks every bit the late-80s hot rod it was meant to be.