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Imola Overload: 2004 BMW M3

Update 11/7/2017 – the seller of this car has raised the asking price to $27,490 and provided new photos.

I’ll admit that I seem to be unnaturally drawn to yellow M3s. I can trace that back to the launch of the E36 and the twin Dakar Yellow examples that turned up at Watkins Glen International for a HPDE; like a newborn, I was apparently imprinted upon them. That doesn’t mean that I don’t like other colors, though, and this Imola Red example certainly caught my attention. It ticked the right boxes; post-LCI example, low miles, 6-speed, great condition and a fantastic exterior color with the optional Fuchs 19″ Style 67 forged alloys. But even more impressive when scrolling through the images was the interior shade of matching Imola Red leather. Who would have ordered such a specification when the majority of new M3 purchasers were considerably more conservative? The answer was a bit surprising:


Year: 2004
Model: M3
Engine: 3.2 liter inline-6
Transmission: 6-speed manual
Mileage: 46,712 mi
Price: $27,490 Buy It Now

2004 BMW M3 E46 Coupe in Imola Red Metallic with Imola Red Leather Interior and Aluminum interior trim. 3 owner, 6 speed manual transmission, M Polished 19″ Forged Wheels.

Car comes equipped with:
COLD WEATHER PACKAGE pass-through ski bag, Heated seats, Headlight Washers, Fold down rear seat.
PREMIUM PACKAGE Multifunction steering wheel, Rain Sensing Windshield Wipers, Auto dimming rear view mirror, Power seats, Lumbar Support, Moonroof . Additional features Xenon Headlights, Harman/Kardon Premium System, and AUX professional glove box adapter.

Car is in excellent condition inside and out. Interior shows minor wear, with leather still healthy all around. The exterior is in great condition with no major imperfections aside from minor hood chips from regular use.

Recent Service Performed: Inspection II, crack free sub frame, new oil filter, fluids replenished, brand new pads and sensors all around, completely rebuilt Vanos System, break fluid flush and new hood insulation. $5,300 in receipts for recent services performed.

Recently replaced Michelin Pilot Sport All Sean Tires.

Car was regularly serviced in intervals of every 7,000 to 10,000 miles at the dealer. Last visit to BMW was at 43,130 miles.

California car its whole life with a clean vehicle History, accident free, No issues and Non smoker.

Car is sold with 1 key remote, complete Owners Manual, clean Car Fax, service history print out.

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For a 2004, this car was well optioned. The gleaming Imola Red 2 and N5IM Imola leather interior were matched with a sunroof, power electric heated seats, headlight washers and rain sensing wipers, Xenon lights, Harman Kardon, brushed aluminum trim and of course option 792 – the 19″ Style 67 Fuchs. But the interesting options aren’t the ones you can see, or indeed the ones disclosed by the seller. Those are options 903 and 916; “Special Check Trade Fair/Photo Vehicle” and “Development Vehicle” respectively. So, it was BMW themselves that ordered this car as a press vehicle. Whether that was for an automobile show for the 2004 model year or used as a press vehicle isn’t disclosed, but clever contacts at BMW might be able to help source that information.

Pricing on low mileage E46 M3s has been heading up, and this one has the right combination of details, color and maintenance to push it towards that level. Last year this car bid to just below $23,000 on BaT, but the market has certainly moved a bit upwards since then. It looks like the seller now is looking for about the same amount they were looking for last year, which admittedly is strong money and will take just the right buyer. The current photos don’t do nearly as much justice to the car as the prior auction’s images, which is strange that the seller didn’t either mention or link to. But a unique opportunity this E46 represents, and with a bit more detective work it could prove to be a good investment.


One Comment

  1. Cory
    Cory April 11, 2017

    Gorgeous! I’m a sucker for Imola Red.

Comments are closed.