Double Take: 2004 BMW M3 Coupes

Phoenix Yellow Metallic could go down as the most polarizing color offered on an M3, ever. In fact, the only thing perhaps more hated than the color on this car (by some, it’s worth noting) is the optional SMG transmission offered at a substantial premium (a $2,400 option) on the E46 M3. Spoiler alert, trigger warning, notice of action – what have you – today’s duo of ’04 M3 Coupes are BOTH Phoenix Yellow Metallic and BOTH have SMG sequential manual gearboxes. Hey, I like a bit of controversy! And, since I own one just like it, I feel like I’m probably better equipped to weigh in than…say….all of the internet armchair warriors.

As for the percentage of U.S. Coupes ordered in PYM: 514 were bought out of 26,202, meaning your chance of running across one when new was only about 2%. Most of those were early examples as well; the color was phased out of the color pallet before the end of production, and along with a bunch of LCI changes that means you’re pretty unlikely to roll across a post-‘03.5 in PYM. So let’s take a look at this duo and see if either is a smart purchase:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 BMW M3 Coupe on eBay

Continue reading

2004 Maybach 62

Oh Maybach, how far will you fall? Normally when screaming about depreciation, its the Maybach 57, not the king of the hill 62 like we have here today. Just to refresh, the 62 was the extra-long wheel base version that measures 20-feet-long (!) that allowed rear passengers lay completely flat. It rang in at $360,000 … in 2004. Just to put that into perspective, the 2004 Rolls-Royce Phantom was only $320,000. This car was unbelievably expensive and its hard to argue it was worth it when you see it now and take a close look at it. That also probably explains why it is so cheap now.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Maybach 62 on eBay

Continue reading

2004 Mercedes-Benz S600

Fresh off last week’s 2018 Mercedes-Benz G65 AMG, I thought I’d look at one of the first vehicles equipped with the M275 engine, the W220 S600. This engine replaced the god awful M158 V12 that lasted a few short years and was by far the better engine for the job. It was so good, they literally put it in almost every vehicle in their range for the next 15 years, including that G65 that I just mentioned. You would think an old twin-turbocharged V12 would be nothing but trouble, but they are fairly easy to live with as long as you remember it is an old twin-turbocharged V12.

This 2004 S600 up for sale in Texas comes in with just a little over 32,000 miles and seems to be in top shape. Admittedly, it isn’t the most attractive car ever in terms of looks and of course the tech is a bit dated, but for the price, is it worth look?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Mercedes-Benz S600 on eBay

Continue reading

2004 Volvo V70R

A few weeks ago I looked at a 1995 Volvo 850 T5-R wagon, one of the all-time great designs launched by the company:

1995 Volvo 850 T5-R Wagon

The Porsche-modified engine managed to channel an impressive 243 horsepower and 250 lb-ft of torque. The downsides? Well, not only was that particular example expensive, it was front-drive only and equipped with an automatic transaxle. Of course, move forward a generation and there was an even more potent possibility if you like fast five-doors; the V70R. The V70R had 300 horsepower driving all-four wheels through a transversely mounted turbo five, along with heavily bolstered sport seats, Brembo brakes, and an Öhlins adjustable suspension. And yeah, you could get a six-speed manual. A vast majority of these cars were used quite heavily as intended, but still are appealing to consider in the used market:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Volvo V70R on eBay

Continue reading

2004 Audi A4 3.0 quattro Avant Ultrasport

Just like BMW’s E46 ZHP package, which was effectively an M3 without the flares and M engine, Audi, too, had a “Diet S4” in the B6 generation. Dubbed the Ultrasport Package, for $3,000 it included RS-inspired “Celebration” 18″ wheels with summer tires, the lowered 1BE suspension that was part of the normal Sport package, a unique quattro GmbH/Votex body kit, and a nicely wrapped leather steering wheel and shift knob. It also limited your interior option to black, and a fair chunk of them appear in Light Silver Metallic – also a popular choice on the S4. Unlike the 330i, the USP A4’s engine choices weren’t upgraded, but you did at least have two – the AWM 1.8T rated at 170 horsepower, or the AVK 3.0 30V V6 good for 220 horsepower. Both were available with choice of 6-speed manual (*5-speed for the FWD models) or automatic, and the basic 1.8T model was about $10,000 less than the 330i. While there was no convertible/coupe USP to compare to the 330i, Audi maintained its trump card on sporty wagons. Just like the ZHP, today the USP A4s command a strong premium in the used market, especially as Avants:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Audi A4 3.0 quattro Avant Ultrasport on eBay

Continue reading

2004 Porsche 911 GT2

In terms of the “windowmaker” Porsches, the 996 GT2 certainly seems worthy of that title. Hard to believe that a 996 can be deemed scary, but that is exactly the kind of false confidence that gets you in trouble with these. Having a twin-turbocharged car that will get you to 60 mph in under 4 seconds without the help of traction control or stability control is the perfect combination for the result of “I just lost it” after getting a little too confident. I think Porsche knew this, and as a result only 303 examples of these cars made it to the US from 2002 to 2005. To put that into perspective, that is half of how many Carrera GTs there are.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Porsche 911 GT2 on eBay

Continue reading

2004 Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG

It feels like the W211 Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG is flying under the radar a little. Well, at least for now. Maybe it’s their subtle looks or lack of screaming exhaust note, but then again, that was the entire point when this car was new. Keep in mind, this was right when the horsepower wars started between Mercedes-Benz, BMW, and Audi, which ultimately prompted V10s in both the E60 M5 and C6 S6. Looking back now, the E60 M5 is basically considered radioactive in terms of reliability, and people seem not to want to sign up for an aging Lamborghini-esque V10 that requires carbon cleaning and new intake flaps every so often. That leaves the E55, the car with a big supercharger on it, as the most reasonable example to own out of the three. I think we set the bar pretty low here.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG on eBay

Continue reading

2004 Volkswagen Golf R32

For a few generations, Volkswagen fans were denied the cream of the crop for Volkswagen products. It took several years to finally get the original GTi to these shores, and then it wasn’t quite as hot as the European version. The second edition might have sported twin cams and 16 valves, but Euro customers got the addtional option of a supercharged, all-wheel drive version. There were plenty of cool options missing from the U.S. lineup in the 3rd generation, too – including the 2.9 liter VR6 Variant Syncro. So there was a bit of rejoicing finally when the all-wheel drive hot hatch was finally added to the U.S. lineup after the initial launch in 2003. Sporting the same 3.2 VR6 found in the TT, unlike the Mk.1 TT it was 6-speed manual only. It was also only available as a 2-door model, with special body kit unique to the R32 and dual exhaust to help announce its sporting intentions. With the best part of 240 horsepower on tap, it certainly seemed like the ultimate Golf and the sound generated from the narrow-angle 6 was mesmerizing. While heavy weight meant it wasn’t considerably quicker than the 1.8T models, it nonetheless has secured a spot in U.S. fans hearts as the top trump from the Mk.4 generation:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Volkswagen Golf R32 on eBay

Continue reading

2004 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S

Year after year, it seems to be holding true that the 996 Porsche C4S is one of the best “bang for your buck” models. The buy-in is relatively reasonable given how crazy 911 prices can get, and they surely aren’t going down in value given the newest one is now 15 years-old. Reliability? Well, good enough for a 911. Some will still scoff at the nose and soft interior, but it is what is, and they surely aren’t going away. This example up for sale Brooklyn, New York is a pretty typical example, but inside has a few extra touches. Maple wood anyone?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S on eBay

Continue reading

2004 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S

Just when I thought I’ve found the most unique color on a 996 Porsche Carrera 4s, along comes this. “This” being a 2004 C4S up for sale in Japan that is painted in the always lovely Ruby Star. We’ve seen this color before on the 964 and 991, but this is the first time I’ve seen it on the 996 body. Even crazier, they took the Ruby Star inside too and painted the center console, trim, and gauge cluster surround. Too much? Or classic Porsche?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S at O-Rush Japan

Continue reading