All posts tagged low miles

2001 BMW M3 with 10,000 Miles

EDIT 7/25/2014: with a few well placed seeds and some research, it appears that this car is the same one as the 10,000 mile M3 I wrote up in May here. That makes the asking price and modifications all the more puzzling. Thanks for the interest and sorry that I didn’t catch it the first time around!

What is the price for perfection? What would you be willing to pay for a brand new example of the car you love? There are certainly a lot of people who love the E46 M3 including me. I really think it was a high point of design for BMW; those sweeping arches, the delicate lines in the hood, the hunched, angry stance – it’s perfect, and best of all, it’s relatively affordable still. But many have already begun to fall into disrepair, and of course when you’re buying an older car you’re subject to what comes to market and managing repairs, restoration and asking price. But what if the car was effectively brand new? Chances are everyone would say “Sign me up!”, especially if that car was in one of the most sought after color combinations. They would, that is, until they saw the price tag:


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1987 Mercedes-Benz 300E with 32k miles – REVISIT

The low mileage 300E we featured last month is back up for sale, its price lowered by $1,000.


Hard to believe someone kept a workhorse like this W124 300E to under 50,000 miles, but I don’t suppose they all have to be living lives resembling third-world taxi cabs to qualify as desirable. Isn’t that funny? We’re so used to seeing these cars record impressive mileage while seemingly barely breaking a sweat that it’s highly unusual – almost suspect! – that someone didn’t drive theirs further. What could possibly be wrong – does it only go in reverse? Whatever the reason, this is pretty much as good as buying a new car except with greater reliability and certainly better style, not to mention hailing from a climate that doesn’t know what rust looks like. Hard to go wrong with this one.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 Mercedes-Benz 300E on eBay

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1997 BMW M3 Sedan with 17k miles

I’ve seen a host of E36 M3 sedans around this week, some great (businessmom in a technoviolet, one in byzanz), some medium (plain white with that spoiler I can’t stand), and some beat to hell (grey with broken everything). They’re always on my radar due to nostalgia and a belief that it would make an incredible daily driver. Today’s example, a creampuff doted upon by the owner’s late father, might not be suited for daily driver duty. At the same time, I’m not sure E36 values are going to really skyrocket, so if you want to drive the best/”newest” E36 around, this is probably it.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1997 BMW M3 Sedan on eBay

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Low-mile, Euro-converted 1985 BMW 535i


I certainly appreciate the big-bumper look of the US-spec 80s 5er, but there’s no denying that E28s look epically sharp in Euro guise, whether converted or original. I’ve written up a very pretty white Euroized 535i before, but this one is a new level of crazy. How do you make a bonkers E28? Well:

- Take (1) US-spec 535i with 27k original miles
- Add (2) Euro bumpers
- Remove (1) automatic gearbox, locate and install (1) dogleg close-ratio 5-speed instead
- Find anything rubber under the hood, remove and replace
- Add (2) electric Recaro sport seats
- Go hog wild with Porsche Lobster Red leather and cover everything you can
- Serve on 4 deep-dish Style 5 platters


Year: 1985
Model: 535i
Engine: 3.5 liter inline-6
Transmission: Dogleg 5-speed
Mileage: 28,700
Price: Reserve not met at $15,100… asking $37,500!?

CLICK FOR MORE DETAILS: 1985 Euro-spec BMW 535i on eBay


I received a call from a very close friend in Santa Barbara about a car that he came across that felt would really be up my alley. What he had found was a two owner 27,XXX mile 85 535i automatic, Alpine White with Schwartz Black interior. Of course being the e28 nut that I am I jumped at the opportunity and after a few phone calls and picture sharing, my wife and I were on a train to Santa Barbara to pick up this beauty.

She was everything we had imagined and was neat as a pin. We drove the car back to Newport the next day and it was like the 80s all over again! I sold these cars when they were new and it all came back to me….the feel, the smells, and of course the way the car runs and drives.

So, in January I decided what I wanted to do to this blank canvas and put my creative ideas into fruition. The main concern I had was that the car had only been driven 400 miles in the last 7 years of the prior owner’s tenure. This had me worried that something might fail prematurely and I didn’t have a factory warranty to fall back on. I decided to completely remove the engine, tear it down to the short block, and start the rebuilding process from there. We replaced every belt, hose, gasket, pump, radiator, etc. My idea was to build a car that you could have ordered from the factory if you lived in Europe. I also wanted to switch out the automatic transmission for a 5 speed and add a little spice to the interior, but my dilemma was that since the car had traveled so few miles, I wanted every component to be comparable or better. I searched for a close ratio (dogleg) 5 speed and found one that had been completely rebuilt, and a rebuilt 3:25 limited slip differential and a new driveshaft. Of course we had to install a new clutch, pressure plate, and throw out bearing as well.

On the interior, I got a little crazy and found a set of old school electric Recaro seats from the 1985 catalog! Then decided to do it all up in Porsche Lobster Red and all in M5 style! So, all of the door panels, pulls, knee bolster, glove box, hvac surround, and e-brake were all covered in leather as well as the rear headrests.

For the suspension, we added factory ///M Technic springs and specially valved Bilstien shocks and struts. I have had several wheel/tire combos on the car as well as a factory stripe kit, and none of them suited me, so I am going back to the 17×8&9″ Polished Style 5 BBS and 235-45-17 tires on the front and 255-40-17 on the rear. I also put in a set of Cocoa Mats that are Black with a Red tracer. Anything and everything that had any wear on it at all was replaced. The car is in “as new” or better condition.

I also did a complete euro conversion using all new OEM parts. I even replaced the tail section with the euro version that has the cutout for the exhaust. I did replace the exhaust system with an stainless steel Ireland Engineering unit. With the euro conversion came a euro M5 chin spoiler and euro headlights/wipers with French brights. That is all I can think of for now. Here are some photos of the car during the process and going back to when I bought it. I entered it in a Concourse in July with some stiff competition and it won first place, so needless to say it is clean….well immaculate is more like it. It looks, drives, and smells like new. I know it’s not everyone’s taste, but hopefully it will appeal to someone. Price is $37,500


This is one of the most thoroughly restored 80s Bimmers we’ve seen here. The attention to details shows through best in the engine compartment, then in the beautiful and concise exterior, and then… well, the interior shows attention to detail, but holy moly is it incongruous. If it were redone in something like BMW’s Cardinal, I’d totally dig it, but this red is too bright, too modern and throws me off severely. With the minimal miles and maximal effort, I could see this car reaching up to $30k, but not the $37,500 he mentions at the end, and to be honest, I couldn’t buy this car with that interior. I’d rather have an E28 not quite showroom perfect than feel like a lobster was clawing my eyes out on the regular.


1993 Porsche 911 RS America

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In these days of streets crowded with Porsche SUVs and “sedans,” it’s crazy to think that 20 years ago Porsche was barely selling 4,000 cars in the US. With the four-doors doing all the breadwinning, Porsche gets to make it rain with seemingly endless variations of the 911. In 1992-3, however, they were just trying to figure out how to stay afloat. A large part of the magic surrounding Porsche as an auto manufacturer is their ability to stick to what they do best regardless of how much naysaying surrounds them.

The 1993 911 RS America is a perfect example of this. In the face of impending doom, they released a stripped 911 ready to race. And unlike modern-day special editions, this one actually cost $10,000 less than a standard Carrera! Only 300 were made and, though rare, many were properly used on the track. Today’s example appears to be one that has spent most of its miles on circuits, the seller specifying that it “can be registered for street use” and its possession of aftermarket wheels and a huge double-tiered wing. History of use aside, this RS gets major bonus points for being the FIRST ONE EVER PRODUCED. That’s right: serial number 001.

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Year: 1993
Model: 911 RS America
Engine: 3.8l flat-6, 300 rwhp
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 30,600
Price: $135,000

Click for details: 1993 Porsche 911 RS America #001 for sale on eBay

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1993 Porsche RS America – #001

Production date 2/12/1992

First RS America ever produced – Serial #001


Currently about 30,600 miles

Car can be legally registered for street use. Many original parts except seats, including suspension, fuel tank, and original wing. Fresh 3.8 and has near 300hp rear wheel horsepower. Dyno sheet is available. Car is great. Two noted exceptions – front right wheel arch has small ding and rear bumper probably needs replacing due to exhaust leak which damaged part of the bumper cover.

Grand Prix White
All black interior
Limited Slip only (no sunroof or A/C)

Very nice original Factory paint

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The owner’s modification and track use of such a historical car is brazen and – I think – awesome. They were made to race and he bought it to race, so hats off to that. I’m sure there are many Porschephiles out there pulling their hair out though, imagining what this car could go for with no track miles or modifications. Well, this owner makes the way of the honey badger and does not care one bit. He’s still looking to get $135k for it, no small change for a 20 year-old stripper. Car, I mean. I’m sure the right collector could put it back together factory-new and drool over “001″ all day, but it seems like a more appropriate use would be to go flog the hell out of it in front of admiring eyes at your next local Porsche track day.


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