Editor’s Note: We love scouring the internet for reasons to spend money we don’t have on cars we daydream about owning, and these are our picks this week. All prices listed are bid amounts at the time of publishing.
It’s tough to be a BMW fan as of late. The Bavarian brand will produce absolutely stunning, sleek cars like the new 8-Series and incredible little apex hunters like the M2 — cars that made them a storied brand in the first place. But, at the same time, it’s given us divisive cars like the i3 and the all-new X7. For all its ups and downs, though, there’s no doubting that BMW’s “ups” have produced some of the classiest and best-looking cars on the road. Luckily, some of them are still relatively affordable.
1988 BMW M6
What we like: The first generation 6-Series was the successor to the much lauded Neue-Klasse E9 CS Coupes, just with a more modern design and updated chassis and engine. It didn’t disappoint — that especially goes for the M6. Its sharp design and incredibly impressive performance from a 3.5-liter straight six — 286 bhp and 251 lb-ft of torque — combined with an unofficial top speed of 176 mph made it a legend in its day. This particular M6 is ridiculously well-kept for its age and is, undoubtedly, twice the car of any 2017 vehicle on sale in the same price range.
From the seller: This 1988 BMW M6 was sold new in Wisconsin and spent time with a previous owner in both New York and California before it was acquired by the selling dealer earlier this year.
Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
2001 BMW M5
What we like: In the early 2000s, the BMW M5 was the perfect balance of performance and luxury. The E46 M3 of the same vintage may have stolen all the headlines, but the M5, with its 5.0-liter V8, set an incredible pace and provided a legendary soundtrack to boot. The luxurious yet analog nature of this performer is perhaps why it has swelled in popularity with collectors and vintage car buys — it’s the last remnants of a completely different era.
From the seller: Delivery equipment for the E39 M5 included an electric glass roof, Dynamic Stability Control, Servotronic steering, tire pressure control and an alarm system.
Location: Jupiter, Florida
2006 BMW M3
What we like: As mentioned above, this is the BMW that stole all the headlines in the early 2000s. The E46 M3 was a pure sports car and nothing else. It was finely balanced, agile and put down the perfect amount of power. It was, and in some cases continues to be, the benchmark to which all sports cars are measured.
From the seller: This final-year E46 coupe remains unmodified and optioned with the premium package, rear park distance control, dynamic stability control, a power glass roof, Xenon headlights, a navigation system and a Harmon Kardon sound system with a 6-CD changer
Location: Springfield, Missouri
1975 BMW 2002tii
What we like: The BMW 2002tii and the 02 Series as a whole is what put BMW on the map on an international scale. The 2002 didn’t have a mountain of power on tap (only 130 horsepower from its 2.0-liter engine), but then it didn’t need to since it only weighed a touch over 2000 lbs. The 2002tii was an affordable performer for its day, and when it came to corners, nothing could touch it, which is why it holds a legendary status despite its pint-size stature.
From the seller: Delivered new in Madrid in February 1975 and was brought to Valencia, Spain, soon after. The car was restored in Spain around 2012, with work including a full repaint, all new body seals and rubber and a new Spanish leather interior. The car remained in Spain until 2014 when the previous owner imported it to the United States. The original books are included with the sale, as are two sets of keys, and email correspondence with BMW Group’s archivist verifying the original production date and color.
Mileage: 6,200 (restored)
Location: Endicott, New York
1972 BMW 3.0CS
What we like: The first generation 6-Series owes most of its svelte, good-looks to the E9 3.0CS. The CS and its iterations at the time were the first coupes to bear BMW’s Neue-Klasse design language. Simple, straightforward, elegant and sharp, the 3.0CS was the automotive equivalent of a finely tailored suit. It only helped its case that it had a beautifully built 3.0-liter twin carb straight-six under the hood.
From the seller: This 1972 BMW 3.0CS was sold new in Quebec City and remained with the original owner until it was sold to his neighbor, a professional automotive restorer. The second owner initiated a rotisserie restoration in its original color combination and the seller purchased the car in 2015 before the work was completed.
Mileage: 99,544 (TMU)
Location: Montreal, Canada