1991 BMW M5

For years I’ve banged on about the E34 M5, a conundrum of the M lineup. It’s got all the right DNA to be a classic, yet like the similar 944 Turbo has generally languished in value compared to similar products. That may sound like a broken record on these pages, but it’s a tune which is both catchy and sweet-sounding for BMW fans because it means they’re getting more car for their money. They’ve got plenty of the right ingredients – the last of the individual throttle body S38 motors producing 315 horsepower, Motorsport details throughout, a great subtle look which still is commanding of respect, supreme road manners and limited numbers – only 1,678 were imported. It’s the right recipe for a future classic. This chassis is still generally overlooked compared to the E28 and E39 models, but those that have spent some time behind the wheel of these well engineered, hand-built Q-Ships proclaim they’re one of the best BMW products made. Recent market activity in since 2016 has started to remix the tune, though, and E34s have been on the rise. Hagerty currently places top value on 1991 M5s at over $74,000 – steep sounding given what many traded for over the last few years, but perhaps more in line with their legendary build quality and performance especially when considering their siblings. So let’s see what a top value M5 looks like today:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1991 BMW M5 on eBay

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2007 Porsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet

Just to wash the bad taste out of our mouth from the paint-to-sample 993 Turbo earlier this week, I thought I’d look at a shade that is a lot more pleasant. This is a 2007 Porsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet finished in paint-to-sample … something purple. The seller says it is “Lavender,” however I don’t recall that being an option for the paint-to-sample cars. This looks much more like Vesuvio Metallic or a shade very close to that. It doesn’t scream purple like an Ultraviolet, but rather has a little bit of a grey tint in it. Personally, I like it. But maybe not on this exact example.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2007 Porsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet on eBay

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1997 Porsche 911 Turbo

Paint-to-sample examples are usually my favorite cars to look at. They almost always have some kind of unique twist that sets them apart from the standard color range and I’m mostly all for them. Mostly. Today is not one of those cars.

This is a 1997 Porsche 911 Turbo finished in paint-to-sample Gold Metallic. That might be the most literal description of a color ever. There is no denying this is a gold car and boy, is it not shy. Sometimes you can get away with having a gold car, but I think this is probably one of my least favorite shades ever, especially on a 993 Turbo. However, it doesn’t end there. Just wait until you see what the picked for the interior.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1997 Porsche 911 Turbo on eBay

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1989 Volkswagen Fox GL Wagon

The Volkswagen Fox is a model which is almost entirely overlooked by us. It’s not because we don’t like the concept of the entry-level Volkswagen brought to the U.S. from Brazil, but the budget pricing coupled with legendary 1980s Volkswagen reliability and build quality (cough cough) hasn’t exactly left a plethora of examples of these small VWs left to contemplate. The Fox was offered in three configurations – two door coupe, four door sedan and two door wagon. Without a doubt, it was the wagon which gets the most enthusiast attention these days. In profile, it looks a bit like a B2 Audi if they had made a wagon, and indeed pop the hood and you’ll see the same longitudinal configuration. Some parts are even interchangeable with the B2 Audis, like the steering rack. But more of this car was shared with the Golf than any Audi product, and though the Fox resurrected the Audi B1 nameplate here the two shared only a passing resemblance. Infrequently seen, these little wagons are neat cars that march to the beat of slightly different Brazilian drummers:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Volkswagen Fox GL Wagon on eBay

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1995 BMW M3

While it was the E30 M3 that I lusted over as a young teen, I came of driving age with the introduction of the second generation E36. I still remember the first one I sat in; a 1995 Avus Blue with gray manual Vaders. At nearly $40,000, it was about as far away from me as the moon landing, but it was my dream car. I didn’t really care that the engine wasn’t the special individual throttle body motor Europe got, or that the headlights weren’t as nice. I cared that it was in the U.S., it was a great color, and because they were being sold that meant that I might be able to get one some day.

Fast forward to today, and if I’m completely honest Avus Blue isn’t my favorite color from the early M3 lineup anymore. Given the option, I’d take either a Dakar Yellow or Daytona Violet example. All three are fairly rare to see among the first 10,000-odd 3.0 M3s brought in before the light revision to the 3.2, when the color pallet changed. And of the three, I’m pretty sure Daytona is the one I’d seek out. Today’s car reminds me why

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1995 BMW M3 on eBay

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2000 Mercedes-Benz SL73 AMG

In terms of the R129 Mercedes-Benz, it doesn’t get better than this. This is the SL73 AMG. Just 85 were made and they are the only SL fitted with M297 V12, which is a variant of the M120 that was tuned by AMG. This is the same 7.3 V12 that powered the early Zonda cars and, of course, the CLK GTR Straßenversion. It is basically the cream of the crop when it comes to the naturally aspirated Mercedes V12 engines and threw down an impressive output of 561 horsepower and 575 lb-ft of torque. Even looking at it is worth the price of admission. But to have the engine and all the car wrapped around it? Bring a very large check.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2000 Mercedes-Benz SL73 AMG on carsensor.net

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2007 Porsche 911 Carrera S

Sometimes what you see isn’t always what the reality might be. That of course applies to colors of cars as well. When I look at the photo above and process what color that is, I would say navy blue. It has a little lighter hue, but a nice dark blue is where I would put my money. However, Porsche will tell you that you are not worthy of judging a color as they are calling the shade “Atlas Grey Metallic”. Naturally I went over to Google and did an image search for Atlas Grey Metallic and what pops up is a bunch of cars that still look navy blue to me. Am I out of touch here?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2007 Porsche 911 Carrera S on eBay

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1997 Mercedes-Benz CL420

I still think the C140 Mercedes-Benz hasn’t had its day yet. They are coming around for sure, but full blown “collector cars” they are not. I also think their time is coming and this example up for sale in The Netherlands is a good reason why. This 1997 CL420, an engine combo we didn’t get in the US, wears the rare Ruby Metallic paint job and the always cool 18″ Eltanin wheels that we also didn’t get. Inside, black leather with burl wood everywhere. Despite looking so good, this one has a surprising 92,000 miles on it. Doesn’t mean it is going to be cheap however.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1997 Mercedes-Benz CL420 at Briljant Car Center

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2002 Mercedes-Benz ML320

Hey there. My excitement sure peaked with I saw this 2002 Mercedes-Benz ML320 finished in its current shade of mint. I thought this was maybe a special order or a designo color given that this shade is no stranger on German cars. I personally love it because I think it is something different without being too garish or offensive as well as being a nice refresher (no pun intended) in the normal sea of earth tones. After all, I’ve seen factory crazier colors on cars, but sadly I was left disappointed on this one. You can probably guess why.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2002 Mercedes-Benz ML320 on eBay

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1959 Opel Olympia Caravan

Emerging as if from some Philip K. Dick dystopian version of the future where the Germans ruled America, Opel’s lineup in the 1950s broadly mirrored that of its American counterparts – only, in 7/8ths scale or less. The Rekord was Opel’s higher-end family car, and it’s styling was in large part based upon that of the mid-50s Chevrolet lineup, only trailing behind by a few years. The Rekord went on to mimic a few other GM products in later versions, and the 1959 model year was the last of this body style.

It was available in two or four-door variants, and marketed in the US as the ‘Olympia Rekord’. But there was also a wagon version of the Rekord, and that was called the Caravan. There are several different naming conventions on these and technically they’re all Rekords, but this one was either called the Olympia Caravan or simply Opel Caravan. Regardless, under the hood was not a thumping V8 but a thrifty four cylinder, and these were sold through Buick dealerships in the US for a while. Today, a relatively top-spec Caravan has popped up for sale:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1959 Opel Olympia Caravan on eBay

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