1986 BMW M635CSi Euro

The other day my wife texted me a picture of an E24 she’d spotted while biking home from work. “It’s gorgeous!” she wrote. I went to have a look at it for myself; you can see the picture I took of it here. It was a 635CSi, parked a few blocks away from the White House with a license plate that read “1LADY.” I can only hope that this means Michelle Obama surreptitiously drives a shark nose when not traveling in the official motorcade. While that particular car was a little worn when seen from close up, with broken bits of trim and some scuffs on the front bumper, even in less than stellar condition it reminded me of just how beautiful these elegant grand tourers are. I haven’t seen or thought of an old 6-series for a while, and that put me on the hunt for a nice one to write up for today.

While I toyed with the idea of featuring a lesser, cheaper model – there are certainly a few knocking around on Craigslist and eBay right now –  ultimately I opted for a car that’s a bit special. This utterly gorgeous, low mileage and mint condition European-spec M635CSi is listed on US eBay, but it’s actually located in Portugal. I’m guessing that anyone who can afford to bid on this car will have no trouble paying for the associated costs of bringing it over.


Year: 1986
Model: M635CSi Euro
Engine: 3.5 liter inline-six
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 50,641 mi
Price: Reserve auction

1986 BMW M635CSi – 81.500kms

Top Original Condition Car – Perfect!

1 Spanish Owner from New.

1986 Model but only sold at the end of 1987!

Always serviced in BMW official dealer.

Large file of invoices.

All factory Panels.

Factory protection wax and production Marks.

Top colour combination Exterior/Interior

The car it’s absolutely perfect – everything is working as it should – don’t need nothing!

The BMW M635 CSi – Type 5531 – 286 HP – LHD –without Catalyst- only were produced 3283 units from 2/1984 to 12/1988.

Its very difficult to find an M635CSI in this condition and price!


Vehicle Identification Number


M635 Csi – EUR

Development Code




Diamantschwarz Metallic – 181

Cardinalrot Leder – 0256

Production Date

291 Forged cross spoke alloy wheels

350 Green tinted glass

401 Sliding/vent Roof, Electric

427 Warning triangle with bracket

458 Seat Adjustment, Electric. F Driver/pass

510 Headlight Beam-throw Contr. F Low Beam

530 Air Conditioning

682 Automatic Radio Antenna

687 Radio Preparation

819 Spain Version

850 Add Fuel Tank Filling For Export

856 Language Version Spanish

979 Velour floor mates

The M635CSi would be rebadged as the M6 when it came to North America. In European, non-catalyst specification, as seen here (“model 5531”), it’s powered by the M88/3 engine, a 3.5 liter, DOHC straight six unit producing 286 hp and 251 lb-ft of torque. Shared with European-spec e28 M5s, this engine was an evolution of the same motor that powered the legendary M1. Here it is combined with a 5-speed manual gearbox. With a February 1986 build date, this car has a slightly revised rear spoiler, three piece cross-spoke wheels and early, chrome trimmed front bumper. According to the M Registry, this is one of 3,283 examples produced in model 5531 spec. Aided no doubt by a good detailing and some neat photography, this car looks as though it just rolled out of the factory. The Diamantschwarz Metallic 181 (diamond black) paint looks stunning against the cardinal red leather interior. The glass and brightwork look spotless and both the undercarriage and engine bay look lovely and clean.

As I write, bidding has already reached $25,000 without having met the reserve and the figure of €63,750 is mentioned in the ad copy (an eye-watering $72k USD). It will be interesting to see what it sells for. With about 50k miles on the odometer, the greatest dilemma facing the buyer of a car like this is whether to drive it, or to park it in the living room and admire it as a piece of art. Not a bad choice to have to face.

– Craig

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One Comment

  1. Absolutely stunning. The new owner will be very lucky indeed.

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