First V12 – 1989 BMW 750 iL

BMW today has a large variety of engines – inline 4, inline 6, v8, v10, v12 – but take the time machine back to 1987 and think of what your options were. You had 3-, 5-, 6-, and 7-series models, and depending on where you lived you had a choice of inline 4 and inline 6 engines. The 750 iL was the first to blow that 30ish-year convention out of the water, offering two side-by-side M20 inline sixes in BMW’s first V12 engine for 300hp and 330 lb.-ft. of thrust. You can find this first-year BMW 750 iL for $2500 in the Fort Worth area of Texas.

1989 BMW 750iL left side

Of course, being a top of the line luxury car, it came with its share of complexity. As a pair of engines joined at the hip, it got 2 ECUs. Based on the seller’s description, there were 2 of quite a few things, including the fuel pumps, which have been recently replaced. It’s also got a new exhaust system, which must be fairly costly.

1989 BMW 750iL interior

The E32 7-series cars were quite attractive in that non-Bangle way. Apparently, the car runs and drives, and the a/c is even cold. Just wait until your engine suffers significant failure – you’re looking at the cost of doing it to a 525i, only twice. It’s had some damage (rear bumper), but other than that, the cosmetics are decent too.

1989 BMW 750iL rear

How else are you going to get into a V12-powered car this cheaply? Wait, did someone say Jaguar XJ-S? That would also qualify, but frankly, the BMW seems a little more trustowrthy in this situation. Maybe you don’t think about the small oil leak or the cracked bumper cover, and just drive the thing into the ground. With 173K already on the clock, that shouldn’t take long – and then you can make a coffee table from the results of that experiment.

1989 BMW 750iL front


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One Response to “First V12 – 1989 BMW 750 iL”

  1. steve in podunk Says:

    Run away! Run away! Monstrously expensive to keep running. A tranny rebuild is a $5000 hole in your pocket!

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