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Tag: RA

1987 Volkswagen Scirocco 16V

While we look at collector-grade automobiles more often than not, it’s always nice to ponder driver-quality cars too. I’ve made the conscious decision several times to not buy the nicest example of a car that I could find, instead trying to rehab a car that had been languishing and might otherwise have been forgotten. I’m now on my fifth example of this, and while economically it might not be the best plan there is something rewarding about salvaging a car and bringing it back from the brink. However, usually such examples are priced accordingly; I bought my 1984 GTi for $300, for example, and the same amount bought me a 200 quattro Avant about a decade later. Once I paid a staggering $800 for a Golf with nearly 200,000 miles on it, and the seemingly decadent V8 quattro set me back $2,000. All gave me lots of automotive joy – not the get in, nothing is wrong type, but if you cue the Sarah McLaughlin and sad puppy dog eyes roll across the screen, I can see the hope in salvation of nearly every car. There’s always something that’s good, right? In the case of today’s quarter-million mile Scirocco, there’s a lot that’s good:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 Volkswagen Scirocco 16V on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 1982 BMW 320/6 Baur TC1

Calling Baur a tuner isn’t really very fair, but since we don’t have a separate category for semi-aftermarket carriage works, it will fit in. Baur worked in conjunction with a few manufacturers – most notably BMW, though a few Audi fans will remember that they were responsible for construction of the Sport Quattros too and they assisted in the assembly of the Porsche 959 as well. Much like Porsche originally started as, they were linked to the factory efforts due to their high level of unique production capability. That manifested itself in limited run models that required special construction – such as the Sport Quattro and 959 – but what most enthusiasts will remember are the multiple 3-series Cabriolet models produced through Baur. These were offered through dealers as an expensive option and to this day remain a very unique expression of Munich motoring:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1982 BMW 320/6 Baur TC1 on eBay

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1985 BMW 635CSi Euro-Spec

It’s been a good week for European specification BMWs here at GCFSB, with the ultra-clean and original E28 and unique E34 the other day. Today is a more desirable model to many, because beyond offering the slimmer bumpers the rest of the world enjoyed, through the mid 1980s if you wanted any real performance from your BMW the Euro versions offered a substantial bump. Through 1984, the top of the heap on U.S. shores was the 633CSi – power had steadily improved since launch, but only slightly – from 176 horsepower in the 630CSi to 181 in the 633. Running concurrently in Europe, however, was a hotter 635CSi. With 218 horsepower on tap from the enlarged 3.4 liter displacement, coupled with a lower weight, these sharks offered much better performance than the U.S. bound models and it was quite popular in the early 1980s to import them. However, in 1985 BMW brought it’s own semi-neutered version of the 635CSi to the North American market, meaning the flood of European models slowed to a trickle and it’s fairly rare to find any post 1985. Today’s example is from that changeover year, and looks splendid in black over tan with BBS wheels:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1985 BMW 635CSi on eBay

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1979 BMW 528i

In yesterday’s Alpina Roadster post, I mentioned cars that you just don’t see much of any more. Is there a better example than the BMW E12? I’m sure there is, but in many ways the E12 embodies exactly what I was speaking of. Early examples suffered from the notorious thermal reactor problems – something that would likely put them on a CIA watchlist for extremist activity today. But it wasn’t just engine problems that struck the E12. There was one that a friend of mine owned and then sold to my cousin. It was a fun car for sure with tremendous personality, but it also had tremendous rust – the downfall of many 1970s BMWs. From the floorboards to the (leaking) fuel tank, it seemed to rust from everywhere. Not many of these sedans survive today, but they really established the benchmark for BMW’s mid-range sedans that carried over through today – they were, at the time, the best driving sedans money could buy:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1979 BMW 528i on eBay

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1984 Volkswagen Jetta Coupe

If there is one car that never really made sense to me in the Volkswagen lineup, it is the Jetta Coupe. There is a cult following for these two-door sedans and many times they command a premium over their 4-door counterparts. Why? That’s a fantastic question, though perhaps it is simply the rarity of the 2-door that elevates their status. The same phenomena can be seen in the Audi 80 (4000) 2-door, which was available in several different engine and drivetrain configurations early in the production run. However, in that case it’s specifically the 2-door 80 that was used as both a basis for the development of the Quattro and, perhaps more notably, the doors and windshield of the Sport Quattro. That link adds to the mystique of the 2-door 80. But the Jetta? I’m afraid I’ve just never understood why it’s more desirable. It’s a less convenient sedan without the styling of a real coupe or grand tourer and without the functionality of the 2-door hatchback Golf. Yet desirable they are, and when presented in low mileage condition with some nice dress up items on an already rare platform like the A1 chassis sedan, it’s quite desirable indeed:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1984 Volkswagen Jetta Coupe on eBay

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