All posts tagged e34

Tuner Tuesday: 1988 Alpina B10 3.5/1

I have a business plan to suggest to the audience; go to Japan, find all of the low mileage AMGs, Rufs and Alpinas that businessmen snapped up in the late 80s and early 90s, buy them and a large number of containers, and bring them over here to eager fans who snap up anything late 80s-spectacular quicker than a cocaine line at a Charlie Sheen party. What’s that? Someone’s already thought of it? We’ve seen a few repeat sellers pop up with surprisingly mint, lower mile examples of some rare German metal – all of which spent time in the land of the rising sun. Again today, it’s another Japanese-import Alpina – this time, an E34 based B10 3.5/1 model:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Alpina B10 on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 1993 Alpina B10 BiTurbo

Alpina has always struck me as one of the most thorough tuners in the world. Their research and development of engines, suspension and exhaust is second only to perhaps Ruf and AMG, thanks largely to their close associations with the factory. Inside the fit and finish of the cars is perhaps even better than they came originally; beautiful details that make the cars stand apart. And visually Alpinas have always been the best looking BMWs out there in my opinion; subtle aerodynamic tweaks, beautiful wheels and striking but tasteful “go faster” stripes that distinguish Munich’s best. But even amongst Alpinas there are special models, and the E34 B10 BiTurbo is one of them. Alpina took a normal 535i and made it’s own interpretation of what the M5 could be; instead of a high-revving twin cam S38, you got two turbochargers with enough torque to embarrass those boys from Affalterbach. Alpina achieved this through a full custom build; Mahle pistons, custom oil sprayers to cool the them, stronger connecting rods, sodium-filled valves and bespoke intake and exhaust systems – but then, Alpina’s never been shy about producing it’s own items. While all Alpinas are rare, the B10 BiTurbo was fairly popular; of the 1600-odd E34s Alpina built, a full 507 of them were B10s. There are quite a few kicking around Canada, but not many are in the U.S., making this 1993 example quite rare:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1993 Alpina B10 BiTurbo on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 1990 Hartge H5SP

Hartge has never really enjoyed the popularity of Alpina, just as the E34 doesn’t enjoy the popularity of the bookends to its production run – the E28 and E39. There are a myriad of reasons for both occurrences, but the result is that for the discerning individual who would like a potential future classic on an affordable budget, the E34 is a great chassis to consider. Solid build quality, good looks and plenty of luxury combined for a genuinely lovely experience. Even in the small motored 525i, the E34 was an entertaining drive when coupled with a manual transmission – I spent many hours at the wheel of the 1995 example my family owned for several years, and while a few times I wished it was an M5, I never was really left disappointed. Move to the bigger brother 535i and you’ve got more go under your right foot – and if you introduce a host of Hartge bits coupled with a Japanese build from famed tuner Tommykaira, you’ve got one interesting and future collectable driver’s car:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1990 Hartge H5SP on eBay

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Wagon Week: 1994 BMW 525i Touring

 

When I come across clean E34 wagons like this one I always wonder what kind of life it has lived, what allowed it go all these years unscathed when so many of its siblings get destroyed by time. At 21 years old this 525iT has fewer miles on it than the majority of used cars from the past decade that we regularly feature. Don’t get me wrong, it’s no garage queen. 72,600 on the clock is a fair amount but compared to the majority of examples out there with more than double that figure under their belt, this is a very low mile car indeed. Aside from the attractive odometer reading the car appears to be in fantastic cosmetic condition inside and out. The Iceland Green Metallic paint over Parchment Leather is as classy as can be and quickly becoming my favorite combo for old Bimmers. Whomever this thing belonged to, they certainly babied it because the front seats show no sign of stress or wear. The rear seats and cargo area look like they’ve barely been used which is particularly unusual for these cars. I keep going back and clicking through all the pictures over and over again thinking I’m going to find something I missed. A tear in the carpet, a stain, a rip in the headliner, something that indicates that this car was used as intended over the past two decades. However there’s nothing there, no red flags, no catch. Just a damn fine example of a wonderfully designed wagon that is ready to serve for many years to come.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1994 BMW 525iT on AutoTrader

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1991 BMW M5

I still remember trips with my father to the track in the early 1990s. We were on a mission; he wanted to look at every single E28 M5 and was dead-set on getting one. 1993 would be the year he finally would; to me, the amount of money he forked over seemed to be pretty astonishing for a used car, but at that time it was the newest car the family owned. Still, it seemed dated already; hard to consider seemed that at that time it was only 5 years old! But this was the time when ever successive generation of car made huge leaps in terms of innovation; frankly, exterior design and interior design haven’t become nearly as revolutionary as they once were. If you step out of a E28 into an E34, certainly you can recognize the DNA; but one feels very surely designed in the late 1970s, and the other is much more modern. The same can be said outside; clearly the E28 is a great looking design, but by 1988 it was quite dated and the last of the German holdouts for non-integrated bumpers to my knowledge. Even Volkswagen did a better job of hiding and integrated the 5 m.p.h. bumpers! The E34 was really a modern revolution to the 5 series; aerodynamic, refined, luxurious and handsome, it once again reset the bar for the mid-sized luxury sedan. And as it had before, the M5 also set the bar for performance sedans, with the same S38 inline-6 under the hood. It was magical still, even if it felt a little less raw compared to the earlier editions. While the E28 long languished as the unappreciated M product from the 1980s, slowly but surely it has gained more appreciation. Today, it seems the of the original pre-E36 cars, the one remaining value is the E34 – ironically, the upscale replacement for the aging dinosaur E28:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1991 BMW M5 on eBay

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