In registry since: Sunday, May 11th 2:46pm.
Location: Miami, Florida
The car is a wonderful Baur convertible. I have always been intrigued by these cars. I studied Architecture, and I love the design which makes up for the structural deficiencies of a normal convertible.
The body/frame of a car is a spanned beam.....a convertible basically cuts a hole in the critical break point where the point load lands on that beam!! The Baur design completes the structure that a standard convertible takes away....yet allowing for the wonderful feeling of driving topless.
I also love the top that falls back the way old luxury convertibles did. It doesnt hide in the body.
Modifications and tuning
This car was originally a 320/6 2.0L Carbureted model. I did some improvements and drove it for about 2 years before I came to the conclusion that an improvement here and there wasted a lot of time and money on assembly and disassembly. I decided to do a top down restoration. A project I thought would only take 8 months ended up taking 3 years. I am finally done with it, and the car is just awesome. This is what was done to the car:
ENGINE: The head had a valve job, and I did some minor port matching to the E30 "is" intake plenum, and out to Bavarian Autosport headers. The block is the stock 2.7L block from a 2.7L E30. We tried going with a stock Motronic at first but figured it was easier to tune a "stand-alone engine management system" for an engine that was such a mish-mash of parts. We went with GoTech.co.az. The transmission stayed the 5 speed that came with the car, going into a 3.91 differential.
SUSPENSION: I had Bilstein remanufacture all four shocks. They came back like new. The rest of the suspension is the stock 320/6, which is identical to the stock 323i.
PAINT & BODY: The car was completely stripped down to sheet metal. There was no major rust to speak of. The rear panel had to be welded to allow for the second exhaust hole, and there were some minor rust bubbles that I ground down to shinny metal and then used POR15 as a primer. The engine bay, trunk, and interior were also painted. I installed FatMat and B-Quiet sound deadening all over the interior.
UPHOLSTERY: I upgraded to Recaro seats, had the front and back leather reupholstered. All the plastic parts and panels were tinted jet black with SEM color system. The carpeting is the charcoal carpeting that is used in the latest BMWs. I custom cut and had ALPINA logos embroidered onto the mats. The ALPINA steering wheel was rejuvenated with the SEM color restorer.
WHEELS: I had bought genuine 15” Alpina wheels, and obviously kept them.
EXHAUST: Bavarian Auto Jet-Hot coated headers with two straight pipes going to the Dynomax mufflers. Some minor porting and polishing on the exhaust side of the head.
I found this car in a parking lot, and left a note for the owner. The owner happened to be from Haiti. They had bought the car from the son of the Haitian counselate, who had brought it over from Haiti.
I had the top replaced and some minor body work done so I could drive it. Now that I have my 1998 323is, I am going to take this car totally apart and start from bare metal.