Archive for January, 2010

So many cars, so little time – 1972 BMW Bavaria

January 29, 2010

I’m sure I’m not the only one in the world to think this way, but every so often I’ll see a car I want, that really fits the bill for me, and hold back on acting on it because the angel on my right shoulder beats up the devil on my left, and I do nothing. That explains why in the last few weeks I’ve passively passed on a 1975 Alfetta GT, a 1969 Alfa Berlina, and now this car. Two of those are in my own back yard, and probably didn’t sell, but there are so many other things to do… home projects, moving, wedding planning, getting the Beta sedan through smog with an eye towards selling it, and hey, maybe spending a bit of time with friends and fiancee.

So let’s focus in on the most recent example of my tale of automotive woe. As you might have noticed from earlier posts, even reject cars from a popular marque pique my interest, and the Bavaria definitely qualifies here. I’ve written before about the many attractions of this model of car, and my only significant criteria with these are they be manual shift and reasonably rust-free, since the money’s not in them to fix their bodies up significantly. The most recent Bav to pop up is this 1972, for sale in Menlo Park for $2600.

1972 BMW Bavaria front

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BMW Bounty #1 – 1967 BMW 2000 Neue Klasse

January 28, 2010

Update, 1/28/10: Looks like this car has resurfaced here. No conclusive evidence, but the likelihood of two clean gold 2000 sedans in the Pacific Northwest even existing, much less being for sale one after the next, is pretty slim!

To prove it’s also possible to feature interesting cars from a mainstream brand (from a US perspective), I dug up a couple of old BMWs that were the foundation of their success story, if not the runaway hit the E10 ’02 BMWs were. The E09 sedans came with the common M10 engine that was also found in 2002s, so drivetrain parts should not be the hardest to get. These cars were outfitted a bit more luxuriously than their 2-door siblings, particularly the 2000tilux, which had a fancy walnut dashboard among other things. They were also commonly fitted with an automatic transmission for the US market. If you can get your hands on one of these, it’s always seemed these were a bargain alternative to an E10 – trade a bit of style while still getting the same handling and sportiness. Similar tradeoffs are available with, say, a E3 Bavaria vs. a E9 coupe, or an Alfa GTV vs. a Berlina.

Anyway, let’s get on to the first of this 2-car set. As usual with many of the lower-end craigslist offerings, there’s not a lot of detail and the photography is kind of shabby. However, you can still glean something from reading carefully and looking closely at the pictures. From the brief description, which says it’s nice but not perfect, and it’s a straight car that runs, let’s assume it’s a decent driver, possibly a rolling project. You can find it on craigslist in Bend, OR fitted with the cold weather package including the super-rare optional icicles, for $3000 all told.

1967 BMW 2000 right side

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Sports & Exotic Inspiration Wrap Up – Spitfire, Spider, and B

January 27, 2010

As you might have noticed, I’ve been featuring cars discussed in a recent article in Hemmings Sports & Exotic Car, or at least near relatives thereof. The first two were a Mazda RX-7 and a Porsche 924S (they featured the 944), which left me with the following cars. Given the self-imposed limit of $3000, the search for an affordable example of each was not such a resounding success, especially when compared with the first two. Since these cars were available starting in the sixties, I added an additional constraint of being pre-1975 to make smogging easier for those of us who need to. Since each of these cars has been featured in the past, I’m not going to give each its own article. With that said, let’s get into it:

First up is a 1970 Triumph Spitfire. As a popular older car, parts are not that hard to find or that expensive. Further, it’s not hard to find a mechanically decent example that could use some cosmetic help in the future, while serving as a driver. This car, in Medical Lake, WA (near Spokane), is such a car. The owner invested a lot in the mechanicals, and the car now needs attention to a rough idle (attributed to the cam), along with paint and interior work. Since the work was done a while ago, count on doing some shake-down and then moving on to the looks department.

1970 Triumph Spitfire

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