1983 Audi Ur-Quattro with 20v Turbo Swap

Similar to the E30 M3 Evan recently posted, today we’ve got an UrQ that has massive potential but is hampered by some warning flags that leave me skeptical. Let’s begin through an optimistic lens: A 63k mile Quattro blew its head gasket thanks to a stuck thermostat in the mid-1990s, and was left to wallow in its injured state for over a decade (garage find!). The current seller, a Porsche/Audi shop, picked it up and swapped in a 115k-mile 20v turbo from an Audi 200 and G60 brakes. The extended rest in a garage left the interior pretty darn clean, but the exterior, maybe good from 20 feet away, needs plenty of work. This is where the skepticism starts.

1983 Audi Ur Quattro for sale on Audifans

My biggest problem with the ad is the amount of hyberbole (“done swaps 100 times more complicated,” “we’ll pull it out in another 10 years when it’s worth $50,000) and subjective comparison (“nicer seats than on my 70k miles 944 turbo”). Just reading it makes me feel like I’m being swindled. The poor UrQ was apparently given a tire-iron exterior treatment by the previous owner’s ex-wife, so it needs a bit of dent work and a paint job. All these issues might make one think they could get a great project Ur-Quattro for a good deal, but the seller sees things differently. He’s asking $17k, based partially on his extrapolation that it will be worth $50k in 10 years (…I don’t think so) and that 2Bennett Audimotive estimates $14,900 for a similar swap. Flags go up here for me as well as to the seller’s logic, because whereas this Audi has a stock 200 20v that once made either 162hp or 220hp, the 2Bennett conversion comes rocking 285hp. Judging by the vagueness throughout the ad, I’d say there’s a good chance it’s the 162hp 20v. Apples to oranges, my friend.

Overconfidence based on faulty estimation drags down what could be a really cool Audi. A good swap in one of my favorite cars is appetizing, but anyone willing to pay $17k for a Quattro that needs $4-5k worth of work hasn’t even glanced at the market. Anyone interested would be better off starting their own project from scratch and could have a cleaner, comparably modified car for much less than $20k.

-NR

Classic car roulette? Sleeping BMW E30 M3 with no reserve

I’m not quite sure this car falls into the full on project car roulette category, but there is enough sketch to raise my eyebrow. However depending on where bidding ends up there could be a decent upside. It has been parked, sleeping (or is it hibernating in Canada?) for eight years.

This 1990 BMW M3 showed up with a sparse description on eBay with no reserve and a low for an M3 opening bid. The car is in Richmond, British Columbia, Canada, the seller is in Taiwan.
The car is a Canadian model with 120,000 kilometers, 74,500 miles.
The seller is clearly motivated to sell the ride and seems responsive to the questions he’s been asked. He has owned the car for 18 years.

The sketchy factor comes into play when you see that the car has been parked since 2002 and that despite “new battery, spark plugs and etc last week. The engine started but car runs rough.” Apparently whatever falls under “etc.” did not fix the rough running. After letting a car sit for this long the problem could be as simple as bad gas or water in the tank or rust that clogged the fuel filter. The seller isn’t clear as to whether it ran rough before it was parked. [DANGER]

The original paint looks decent in the photos, but the seller says “needs work to make it shine again.” A good rubbing compound and a proper buff out could do wonders if it is just cloudy from sitting or even age crazing, however later in the responses to questions the seller says it needs new paint. The car also was broken into through the driver’s window and had the radio stolen.

There are only 4 small pictures included with the ad, and the hood isn’t even closed all the way on the only exterior shot that would show front panel alignment.

Hopefully this really is a case of an honest enthusiast who loved the car and wanted to keep it, but just can’t and needs a hurried sale. Our experience with minimalist, vague, seems too inexpensive, used car offerings does make it a necessity to be particularly skeptical thanks to a few shady folks. Honest or not expect to spend some time on this ride to get it sorted, I wouldn’t want to fly in and drive this find home. Who knows what the salty sea air of BC has done to the brakes.

The M3 comes with original rims as well as the 17″ Racing Dynamics wheels it currently sits on.

The bidding is up to $10,000. With the Canadian dollar strong against its American counterpart now, shopping up north isn’t inherently thought of as bargain hunting as it once was, but perhaps this is a deal in the making. If two folks feel they both have to spin the roulette wheel on this one I could see the bid price getting dangerously high for what may turn out to be trouble. On the other hand… wishful thinking doesn’t make this one out to be a basketcase like other beaten and customized into an inch of their life E30s we’ve seen. If you buy this let us know how it turns out.

~Evan

1982 Mercedes 300CD concours condition

This very fine all original Mercedes two door is up for sale on eBay. The red paint looks brilliant and the tan interior looks as new. The turbo diesel has covered only 60,000 miles, which is basically just break in on the beyond reliable 5 cylinder.

Bidding is up near $10,000 with the reserve not met. Compare that price with general 80s Benz prices and you can see the premium being paid for the low miles and the rarer coupe configuration.

The seller says the car is too nice to drive daily and that it should be in a collection.

~Evan

1991 BMW 850i with only 11k 1st in U.S.?

The seller claims that this 8 series, with only 11,440 miles, may have been the first one imported into the U.S.. The car is presented as new with all books and with a Dinan ECU upgrade, Dinan Exhaust, and AC Schnitzer wheels.
Not much more to say with this one, other than driving it will start to bring down the value. Which is a shame since it comes with the manual transmission. The big V12 begs to have its legs stretched on some lonely highways. It also begs to have some better pictures in the ad. If you have a super low mile car and your looking to showcase how pristine it is try to get some decent, well lit, in focus photos.

The buy-it-now price is $47,500.

~Evan

1980 BMW 735i Touring Prototype

I’ve admitted it before, I’m not a big fan of sport utility vehicles. Coming across this rare BMW prototype reminds me why I like wagons so much. I remember seeing this 735i Touring on eBay about a decade ago, and now it’s current owner in Newton, Massachusetts has it up for sale again on eBay, with no reserve.

The seller states:

1980 BMW 735i Touring with 9,042 miles today. This is a Euro model and eBay does not like the VIN which is WBA68410007432544 It was built in June 1980 and is titled as a 1981.

Per the site stationwagon.com http://www.stationwagon.com/gallery/198x_BMW_735i.html

“This car was built on the BMW production line for display at the Frankfurt Auto Show. There were only two cars made like this. It was built on the 735i chassis – and is a European model. This was never a production car. Details include – – 8,179 original miles, tan cloth interior, a manual sunroof and windows, roof rack, alloy wheels & automatic transmission. The car was imported to the US and brought up to DOT and EPA standards in Ohio.”

This car was purchased on eBay in 2000 with 8,179 miles and was amongst a collection of approximately 100 cars owned by a noted collector in New Hampshire. It was then purchased in 8/2003 with 8,300 miles from the collector’s estate sale until it was purchased by me in November 2010 with 9,002 miles. I had service performed on the car, tuned it up, replaced mechanical and safety items and brought the car back onto the road. It runs and drives fine. It is currently inspected and on the road with a Massachusetts December 2010 inspection sticker. I would have no hesitation using this car as an everyday vehicle.

Unfortunately I do not have the space to keep it unless I give it to my 16 year old as his every day car and sell his. This rare beautiful vehicle deserves better than that. The negatives to the car are: 6 spots where the paint has lifted and there is surface rust underneath. Also the straight pipe in the exhaust is rusty. It was able to pass inspection but I don’t know how many more years it has left. There is a small rip in the center armrest in the rear seat. I have tried to clean up the interior but it hasn’t been warm enough since I purchased the car to do an outstanding job.

The starting price of this auction is $7,000 with no reserve. Given the history of this vehicle, and based on recent sales of clean E23 7 series, I’d take a stab and say anything in the $10 to $15k range would be realistic. Unlike an M1 or Z8, the desirability and value won’t ever be as high, but there’s no denying the historical significance of this vehicle. Given that it was built on the BMW assembly line and foreshadowed BMW Touring models to come, it deserves to be preserved for future generations. Having visited the BMW Museum in Munich two years ago, and after seeing the exhibits, it would be great to see this prototype in such a collection.

-Paul

1984 Mercedes-Benz 300CD with 35,000 original miles

Another week goes by and amazingly, another clean W123 Mercedes-Benz appears. In contrast to the clean 1981 Estate featured last week, here is an amazingly low mileage turbodiesel coupe from the second to last production year for the W123.

1984 Mercedes-Benz 300CD on eBay

The seller states:

Up for bids is this super low mile Mercedes, a 1984 300CD. This car was bought new at Rasmussen Mercedes here in Portland as part of their European Delivery Program. The car was delivered new in Sindelfingen on May 21st, 1984 where the new owners enjoyed a driving tour of Europe. The car has had 3 local owners since new, and with its low miles remains an exceptional example of the acclaimed W123 series.

Finished in Silver Blue Metallic, code DB930, the car presents very well. The paint finish appears to be all original and in impressive condition – glass smooth, with excellent depth and gloss. The body is free of dings or dents, and of course no rust problems anywhere on the car. Tires are nearly new Toyo radials. All 4 wheels are in excellent condition with no scuffs or curb rash.

All switches and controls are in like new condition, and all of them operate correctly. The climate control functions as it should, the AC has been converted to R-134 and blows cold. Its auto function works correctly, including the stepped fan feature. The car retains its original Becker Grand Prix cassette radio, a very advanced unit for its time. It works in tandem with the power antenna just as it should.

The car comes with a full assortment of original manuals and paperwork, as well as all of the service records from new. Also included is a folio full of all the documents pertaining to the car’s European delivery. There is interesting information here, such as instructions for picking the car up at the factory, a bill of lading for the trip back to the US, customs forms, even an advisory letter stating that a strike by the Metal Workers Union of Germany may “have the effect of delaying sailing dates for automobile carrying vessels!”

There’s a little under a week left for this auction and bidding has almost reached $20,000, and the reserve STILL hasn’t been met. While Mercedes-Benz coupes and convertibles always command a higher resale value, we are talking about the more pedestrian mid range model for the era. I have never seen a W123 with an asking price this high, at least in recent memory. I could see maybe paying around $15k for an example like this, and maybe even $20,000 at the maximum. But, as with any auction, time will tell to see if the reserve will be met and what it’s worth to someone.

-Paul

1992 Porsche 911 America Roadster

I’m a sucker for cars that have an interesting color combination or rare collection of options. Porsche had some unique colors back in the late 1980s and 1990s, partly due to the fact that Harm Laagay returned to Porsche from BMW in 1989, after completing the Z1 project. This 911 America Roadster was a limited run model with 250 produced. It has the cabriolet body with the 911 Turbo’s flared rear fenders. The car also adopted the brakes and suspension from the 911 Turbo but retains the Carerra’s 247 horsepower engine.

The seller states:

This is a 1992 America Roadster in Raspberry red on Raspberry red (himbeerrot metallic) 1 of only 4 ever built according to Porsche North America.

History of the car:

First owner was a wealthy Western Canadian Businessman, now retired. He traded the car in on new Porsche turbo and the dealership wholesaled it out – purchased by a Canadian broker who deals in air cooled, limited editions Porsche – good reputation.

Second owner who I bought the car from; Canadian retired Banker from Japan. He is a Classic Porsche enthusiast and very knowledgeable about Porsche. According to him the Porsche has always been garaged/kept warm, never seen snow, virtually not seen rain.

Original owner confirmed it was factory ordered, custom matching interior including back seats (found in many euro cars, but very unusual in American cars, which usually have cheaper rear seat delete.
Original owner reports post ordering and upon its arrival he agreed to allow Porsche North America to use the car on the auto show circuit.

Allers Autosport has serviced the car this year and last. Frank (an inductee into Canadian Motorsports Hall of Fame) was formerly mechanic at MCL motors (Vancover Porsche Dealer) but for years has operated his own very small shop focusing on the aircooled Porsche (has no website) operates among aircooled 911’s crowd.

5/08 orig. owner replaced cab top cables, pulleys, gears, transmission $2847
5/08 orig. owner maintenance ck, oil service and new battery $560
8/08 custom audio install (alpine headset with i-pod dock, boston/pioneer speakers), sorry but original speakers, cd, radio….all were bad.
12/08 orig. owner full engine ck/mechanical ck (air filter, plugs, heat exchanger gasket $842
1/09 orig. owner, replaced DME relay and servicing $410
3/09: oil service and replaced front hood struts $323
3/10 mechanical ck/ck plugs/ck brakes, oil service and replaced distributor caps & rotors $875
4/09 broker replaced cab top (pacific auto trim ) $1995
4/09 broker had alloy wheels refinished $672
7/09 new tires ( z rated, 17’s stock sizes)

Mechanically the car is Perfect! Everything works and does not drip any oil! This Porsche has 66,000 miles and the odometer reads in KMS at 110,000kms. If someone buys it in the US I will Pay to have the Speedo converted to US MPH at Palto Alto Speedometer.

Interior/Exterior:
-Side panels, doors, turbo flares excellent. There are no dings/door marks/scratches. Same goes for door sills.
-Bumpers excellent (both resprayed last year for stone chips-front, scratches-rear)
-Hood / rear deck excellent. Overall excellent except for 2 small stone chips under front headlight which I inherited with car. The paint is in overall excellent condition
-Interior carpet is good to excellent.
-Door panels both carpet & leather – excellent
-Wheels newly refinished 17″ cups ( from the turbo model) excellent, no scuffs

-The seats are Porsche sports. Passenger seat is excellent, drivers seat is excellent but side bolster-entry side has approx 2″ wear mark).
-Shift boot/leather surround excellent
-Full leather dash (both upper/lower) excellent
-Brake lever, has small scar, approx 1/4″
-Rear seats/belts excellent
-Top new last yr., excellent
-Visors, excellent
-Steering wheel, excellent

The buy it now price of $39,500 is a tad higher than Kelley Blue Book’s appraisal, but about right for what NADA is quoting. The color may not be to some folks’ taste, but the car is well documented and in good condition, along with having a reasonable amount of mileage for the year. The Porsche 911 is renowned for it’s strong resale value in comparison to other Porsches. Even though 964 models aren’t the most valued, the rarity of the America Roadster is surely to add to this car’s lure in the future.

-Paul

2005 Mercedes CLK DTM AMG

This week for my post representing what would be awesome to have delivered to my garage by Santa the first thing that came to my mind was CLK DTM. I looked for several days and didn’t see what I wanted, after all they only made 100 of these and I want a silver one.
Then call it a holiday miracle one pops up for sale today on eBay.

This isn’t the most beautiful car in the world, but it is guaranteed to catch people’s eye with its muscular stance. The bulging fenders, deep bumper vents, and big spoiler all speak to the purpose of this machine. The supercharged 5.5 liter puts out almost 600 horsepower, more than its namesake Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters race car. The number is deceiving since many AMG cars these days make so much horsepower, and though not a lightweight the DTM does come in on the scale under most other recent AMG vehicle.

The DTM’s weight is partly due to the retained interior comfort features. It does lose the rear seat in favor of an integrated stiffening strut and typical cushy Mercedes front seats are skipped out for significantly racier models with harnesses. A good amount of carbon fiber also helps with weight reduction. Its 220MPH speedometer might help you impress the parking lot crowd. The paddle shift five speed lets you impress those in the passenger seat as you skip to 60 in under 4 seconds on your way to a 200MPH top speed.

The CLK DTM represents some of the rawest most exclusive Mercedes power to ever hit the streets. Not quite on the same level of outrageousness as the CLK GTR, but with far better usability. You can find this kind of power elsewhere for far less money, for instance
with 6000 miles is pushing 645 horsepower and it costs “only” $98,900. You can even spend $100,000 less and still get a brand new top of line AMG, but it won’t be as special as one of these.

This dealer is asking $374,900 for the 3500 mile car. That is a hefty premium for rarity. Plus some people might mistake it for a “typical” AMG car or one of the few boy racer clone DTMs that are out there. Cars like these don’t change hands all that often so sellers can ask whatever they want. Fortunately a new owner would be able to drive the car around for awhile and then name his own price. If you are a convertible driver you can keep browsing the classifieds as they built 80 topless models too, though they have a limited top speed slightly lower than the hardtop. Seeing a car like this with the top down and the giant spoiler looks very odd. All is forgiven with a blip of the throttle and the awesome exhaust note.

I hope Santa has a big sleigh.

~Evan

1996 Mercedes-Benz C36 AMG

The C43 and C55 W202 Mercedes-Benzes were popular enthusiast hot rods, mainly because they matched massive V8 power in a small, relatively unassuming package. They also tend to overshadow the first collaboration between AMG after it became an in-house tuner, the C36. Packing a bored out, 3.6 straight six good for 276 horsepower. Here’s a clean example for sale up in Wisconsin with a relatively low 72,000 miles.

The seller states:

This is a very limited edition, ultra rare 1996 Mercedes-Benz C36 AMG, 72k miles, silver metallic with black leather, brand new tires just installed, all serviced up and ready to enjoy or put it away and let it appreciate!

This car is impossible to find ESPECIALLY with such low mileage. It is right out of the owners personal collection and is very hard to find, especially with such low miles! Only a couple things to note; A/C blows warm, will need a charge and some of the wheels have some clear coat peeling. Everything else works as it should. Comes with 1 key and remote.

With only 5,200 C36 AMG models produced, you surely won’t see yourself coming and going in this car. Then again, for not much more money, you could have the later V8 version. But it won’t ever have the title of being the car that started the AMG craze that has been going strong for the last 15 years.

-Paul

2004 Mercedes-Benz SLK32 AMG

Every time I see the recent Mercedes-Benz commercial with Santa riding off in the red SL63, it gets me in the mood for a red Mercedes roadster. And here we have a tasty, red, first generation AMG SLK right in time for the holidays. This example has just under 35,000 miles on the clock. The SLK32 packed the 3.2 liter supercharged V6 which was shared with the Chrysler Crossfire SRT-6 coupe and roadster.

Not much of a description is given by the seller, but from the pictures and the mileage, it looks as if it was well cared for. Provided there are no issues and a clean service record, this could be a good, lightly used bargain for under $20,000.

-Paul