2001 BMW Z8

Spring has finally arrived, and thus we look at another lovely drop top.

Back in the early 2000s when the dollar was ultra strong, my buddy Jan took advantage by importing some serious sheetmetal from Europe. In a warehouse near MacArthur Airport, he kept dozens of Ferraris, Mercedes, BMWs and others. The greenback was so strong that he could import, DOT/EPA convert them, sell them for 10-20% less than US based dealers, and still pocket a nice profit.

Towards the end of the run, he offered me a Z8 for about $75k. Missus Big Picture properly convinced me of all the reasons we could not afford it. This was 15 years ago, we had just bought our first house, I was still paying off grad school loans, and did not have much in the way of savings. With a heavy sigh, I had to pass.

But I helped Jan sell it, urging him to show the rare Bimmer at Westbury Mansion’s annual antique and collectible auto show. I literally walked someone over to see the car, who ended up getting the deal of a lifetime when he bought it. I got drove it to its destination that evening, with all that power making it a little twitchy in the light rain (the beast suffers from the same issue in the wet).

It was one of my greatest automotive regrets was passing on that Z8 — a silver and black beauty that has since increased in value 5X. But it was the delightful driving dynamics of the open air 6-speed manual V8 that I miss most of all.

The black and tan sweetie below is a lovely example; they regularly go for $200-300k.

Yet another one for sale — the original owner collected it from the dealership in 2001, drove it home, parked it in a climate-controlled garage, and never drove it again. It is essentially brand new.



Source: Classic Driver

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