2001 BMW 740i Sport

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The E38 is one of my favorite sedans of all time. The E39 gets a lot of love as “best ever” thanks to its monumental M5, but the contemporary 7er is the perfect blend of the simple, sharp lines descending from the 80s classics with modern features and aggression. The Sport package, introduced in 1999, backed up its Shadowline trim and M-Parallels with a new transmission and suspension and is absolutely the way to go with E38s. Some came with 6-speed manuals, but this is one of the few instances where I find a 5-speed auto to be perfectly suitable. Today’s example looks fantastic in black on black, but suffered a front end collision – apparently just requiring a front bumper and headlight – that caused the insurance company to total it. It’s all repaired now and looks great, but title issues are always a little sketchy. Clearly the seller was not worried about resale value, and if you don’t care either this no-reserve auction could be an amazing deal for one of the best full-sized sports sedans ever.

Click for details: 2001 BMW 740i Sport on eBay

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1983 BMW 732i

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Last weekend I came across a very early E23 BMW 7 series with a manual gearbox for sale in Canada. Finding one of these in good shape is rarer than the proverbial hen’s tooth in the Americas. The first generation 7 series is one of those cars fading away to memory, stuck in between the handsome E3 “big six” sedan and the E32 7 series with its available V12 engine that succeeded it. Always on the lookout for the unique ride, we’ve stumbled upon this 732i for sale in The Netherlands is sure to be a hit for those who like the slim bumper appearance of the cars sold in Europe at the time.

Click for details: 1983 BMW 732i at Ruyl Classics

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1978 BMW 733i 4-speed manual

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There’s a website How Many Left? that tracks the number of examples of any particular vehicle still on the road in Great Britain. If their numbers are accurate, then the BMW 733i is almost extinct. I can’t remember the last time I spotted an E23 on the road, let alone an early 733i. These early 7 series are not a darling of the collector set. Around 285,000 were produced over a decade span. I’ve seen plenty of E23s in rough condition and if that’s anything to go on, then many have taken their final trip to the scrap heap. This 1977 733i for sale in Vancouver, British Columbia, however, has escaped that fate.

Click for details: 1978 BMW 733i on eBay

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2001 BMW 740iL Sport

Two large German sedans from the last three decades stand out in my mind as perhaps the most beloved. The Mercedes-Benz W126 S-class and the car you see here, the BMW E38 7 series. While the BMW E32 7 series moved the luxury car chains in the late 1980s, the E38 refined the breed, carrying on the option of the smooth V12 at the top of the range while streamlining the classic BMW styling hallmarks we know and love just a bit. This final year 740iL for sale in Florida has the Sport Package, which includes the sought after Style 37 M-Parallel alloy wheels. Having covered less than 50,000 miles, this burgundy beauty has a lot of life left in it.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2001 BMW 740iL Sport on eBay

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1997 BMW L7

Shortly after the E38 BMW 7 series was introduced, the company resurrected a name from the 1980s to grace one very special 7 series. The L7. The first L7 was based on the E23 7 series and appeared for but one model year in 1986. This 7 series featured leather upholstery throughout with a leather dashboard and door padding, a power glass moonroof and a driver’s side airbag.

For the E38 though, the L7 badge would mean something a little more special. First, one notices the extra length. Ten inches longer aft of the B-pillar, this car was designed with rear passenger comfort in mind. Leather upholstery throughout was standard, of course, as was the V12 engine. A full length console ran down the center of the rear seats, with electric adjustments for both rear seats and a refrigerator behind tucked away behind the folding armrest. Tray tables like what you would see in a Jaguar XJ Vanden Plas were on hand, as well. Just 899 of these long-wheelbase 7 series were produced, with the bulk being produced in 1997 – 265 examples. This particular L7 is on offer south of Stuttgart in the direction of the Swiss border.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1997 BMW 750iL L7 on eBay

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2001 BMW 750iL

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Mercedes has made an interesting tack, reasserting themselves as the kings of luxury and letting sporting dynamics become secondary. BMW is making interesting inroads in the green department and still produces very sporting cars, but like many automakers, their mission has become muddled. There was no question about where the E38 7-series sat in the hierarchy of the big boys though, bringing the most sporting looks and dynamics to the full-size luxury sedan segment. While the 740i may be the sportiest choice, the 750iL brought V12 power and presence to the party. They may be highway dominators, but today’s example has covered less than 50k miles and comes heavily optioned, including the excellent and Shadowline-including Sport Package. With a detailed and extensive maintenance history, this is the way to go if you’re interested in the 750.

Click for details: 2001 BMW 750iL on eBay

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1995 BMW 730i 5-speed Manual

I’m not a conventional person by any stretch of the means. This is probably why I’m turned on whenever I see a large luxury sedan equipped with a manual gearbox. Like this BMW 730i for sale in Potsdam, Germany equipped with a 5-speed manual gearbox. This was the first year for the E38 7 series, and while we saw this engine and gearbox in the E34 530i, this 730i model was one that never made it here.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1995 BMW 730i on Mobile.de

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1995 BMW 740i with 40k miles

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The mid 1990s would bring about a new flagship for BMW, one that would take on a more evolutionary than revolutionary styling change. The E38 7 series would go on to become one of the most revered large BMWs in history, as the 7 series that followed was not as well received due to its radical styling. Available in V8 and V12 form throughout its stint in the US, this 1995 740i represents the more “basic” short wheelbase form that was on offer to American customers. The earlier E38 had the 4.0 liter V8 that we see here, supplanted by a revised 4.4 liter unit from 1996 onwards. It’s uncommon to spot an early E38 with low mileage, as these would be tasked to devour highway miles at a rapid clip. This 740i has escaped the ravages of time and is closing in on a mere 40,000 miles.

Click for more details: 1995 BMW 740i on Hemmings Motor News

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1989 BMW 750il

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I’m not alone in my preference for the E38 7-series; its minor updates over the E32 seemed to really take the design to a new level of cleanliness and aggression. Relative to the well cared for E38s that still roam the streets looking amazing, most E32s look beat up, frumpy, ridden hard and put away wet. All that changes today though, as this is hands down the best E32 I have ever seen. Rocking lowering springs, M-Parallels, and a nice front lip, this black V12 beauty is the business. It’s not just a pretty face, either; it’s covered just 37k miles in its life and has had tiny issues tended to. It takes a really nice E23 for me to be more attracted than pretty much any E38; this is the first E32 that’s really ever required a second, third, and fourth glance.

Click for more details: 1989 BMW 750il for sale on eBay

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