Motorsports Monday: 1972 BMW 2002tii

As vintage circuit competition cars have steadily ascended into the automotive Valhalla of pricing thanks to success of popular races like the Le Mans Classic, Monterey Historics, and of course the many events at Goodwood, the fallout has been to pull up related motorsports. For some time, vintage rally cars were generally considered used up, tired old hulks. But the fringe of enthusiasts that loved seeing the flatout and fearless driving attitude adopted by many a rally driver has grown to a much greater audience with new races like the Targa Newfoundland and Tasmania to name a few. While those races attract much newer and faster metal, there’s still a huge audience that loves seeing the pre-Quattro 1970s vintage rally cars. With high revving naturally aspirated motors and rear drive, this was the original ‘Formula Drift’, with constantly sideways Ford Escorts, Fiat 131 Abarths and the superhero of the 1970s WRC scene, the Lancia Stratos. But mixed in there too were some Porsche 911s, and of course, the effervescent BMW 2002:

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1974 BMW 2002tii Touring

Long before “Clownshoe” mania, BMW had another slightly off-beat hatchback in its lineup. The company recently spent a fairly sizable sum advertising the lineage between the new 2 series and the original 2002, but as generally impressive as the new 2 is, the one thing lacking is a model similar to the E10 Touring model. Okay, the F45 and F46 tall hatchback models channel a bit of that, but let’s be honest – they’re not exactly what enthusiasts love. And similarly polarizing is the Touring model in the E10 lineup. The Michelotti design channeled some of the GT feel from the Glas acquisition, but while the fluid lines of the 1600GT worked well in a low slung sports car, moving to the taller and more upright E10 platform gave the Touring slightly odd dimensions. Shortened by about 6 inches and with additional glass, the Touring had modern conveniences like split-folding rear seats and was available in five different engine configurations over its short three year model life. From 1600 to 2002, the model designations referred to the engine capacity – imagine that! But the top of the heap was the 130 horsepower 2002tii Touring – for enthusiasts, one of the rarest variations of the E10 made:

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Tuner Tuesday: 1973 BMW 2002 Tii-spec Zender

As with E30s, E36s, Volkswagen GTis and Jettas and Audi A4s, there seem to be a tremendous amount of modified 2002s. A popular tuning platform, they take many different forms in their personalization – not all of them good. Indeed, some of the modded 2002s that pop up for sale really leave me scratching my head as to the intentions of the owner. But when you see one that got it right, they always make me smile. Some of those “right” cars are period-look Alpina or Schnitzer cars, some are more subtle – just low, clean and with a nice set of Hella or Marchal fogs and some BBS Mahles. Then there are the updated cars, such as this more wildly Zender flared example. To me it looks pretty slick!

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1973 BMW 2002 Tii-spec Zender on eBay

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