Thursday, May 14, 2015

15k: Butternut Squash: 1999 BMW M Coupe

Genius isn't always recognized in its time.  Vincent Van Gogh only sold 2 of his 2,000+ artistic creations during his lifetime, and committed suicide at age 37 due to his lack of financial success.  Legendary writer Edgar Allen Poe was similarly unsuccessful during his lifetime (found dead in a Alley at 40), but has become one of the most studied American short story authors of his time.  Automobiles have had similar experiences, with examples languishing at dealer lots when new, but scooped up under the intoxicating lights of a BarrettJackson/Mecum auction decades later and BMW's Z3 M-Clownshoe is a great example.  Find this 1999 BMW M Coupe offered for $17,000 near New Haven, CT via craigslist.  Tip from John.


The Z3 started life as a 4-cylinder-only roadster based on the E36, but got progressively more interesting as the years wore on and the "chick car"ness was gradually eradicated from it. The coupe / shooting brake / clown shoe / butternut squash whatever you want to call it version was released as the M Coupe, with a firebreathing 3.2L inline six and cat-like reflexes. 


The standard skinny Z3 was powered by the E36s basic selection of inline fours and sixes, but the M Coupe got Kardashian sized fender flares and the powerful S52 I-6 from the M3.  The US market S52 puts out 240 horsepower from its 3.2 liters and its quite a few ponies down from the European version, but it pays dividends in reliability. Out of all the things to worry about falling apart on your BMW, the S52 isn't one of them, but the coolant expansion tank, rear subframe bushings, water pump impeller -- those are the parts to keep you up at night.


See another M-Clownshoe with a salvage title and a decent price? tips@dailyturismo.com

13 comments:

  1. Me want, but not this car at this price. In fact, not this car whatsoever. It's overpriced (I'm sure I'll get yelled at for that one because they're going for more on the street) and it's a salvage. Still, find me an M Coupe that's not a salvage at a decent price and let me win the lottery and I'm a buyer. I can dream, can't I?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Crazy money for a salvage title car. There's one - also red - on ebay right now with slightly fewer miles and a 19k asking price.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/BMW-Z3-Z3-M-COUPE/171785975887?_trksid=p2045573.c100033.m2042&_trkparms=aid%3D111001%26algo%3DREC.SEED%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D31030%26meid%3D09d1c071c6be4688a109ddbe3e5a3b16%26pid%3D100033%26rk%3D1%26rkt%3D4%26sd%3D171785975887

    ReplyDelete
  3. Having the Forbes subframe kit is a huge plus. Lots of other work has been done too. Not a crazy price honestly even if one doesn't care about rare color combo. Offer 15k and end up with a car that has had the heavy lifting already done for you.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Having the Forbes subframe kit is a huge plus. Lots of other work has been done too. Not a crazy price honestly even if one doesn't care about rare color combo. Offer 15k and end up with a car that has had the heavy lifting already done for you.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Having the Forbes subframe kit is a huge plus. Lots of other work has been done too. Not a crazy price honestly even if one doesn't care about rare color combo. Offer 15k and end up with a car that has had the heavy lifting already done for you.

    ReplyDelete
  6. @Alex Vendler : wow, I had no idea about the subframe problems on these cars. This video tells much of the story:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9JIPJLROAes

    Frankly, the construction under there looks really tacky even before every thing fatigues. So much for "you get what you pay for".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Zoinks!

      [img]http://i.imgur.com/TpW6JFn.jpg[/img]

      Delete
    2. BMW's excessive faith in sheetmetal developed with the E36/8 and E46 and peaked with the E52 Z8.

      The former two might be salvageable if damaged, but a Z8 with domed strut towers is scrap aluminum.

      Delete
  7. A clown shoe is in the top three on my bucket list, close enough that the right car at the right price would probably have me biting.

    Red doesn't do it for me. I really want Dakar Yellow with an S54 but BMW didn't do that, and the hideous pearl-yellow BMW sprayed on the late S54 cars sends me running away.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agreed. Dakar was THE color for the clownshoe, IMO.

      Delete
    2. You guys got it all wrong! The (insert fancy color word here) blue was the best! Really though I usually like red cars and it doesn't belong here. Dakar Yellow is a great color too.

      Delete
  8. I miss my 2000 S 52, silver over black, more than any of the cars I have had. I heard clunks a few times at 54k miles and sold it for what I paid for it 3 years before. It's still worth that same amount.
    You would never regret driving this little drifter...

    ReplyDelete

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