Offered for sale is an absolutely stunning, 38k original mile 1993 BMW 850Ci, finished in ever menacing Black over a Black Nappa leather interior. Sold new by Vasek Polak BMW in Hermosa Beach, CA with a MSRP of $86,400 (which would have been $140k+ today if adjusting for inflation), the car’s original owner was the founding principal of a successful Manhattan Beach, CA brokerage house. He would own the car until February of 2000, when he sold it with 11,500 miles to the car’s second owner, a resident of Pasadena, CA. The second owner would keep the car until his death in late 2014, his estate selling the car in the Spring of 2015. Each of the car’s two southern California owners always treated the car with the highest regard, keeping it garaged and professionally maintained and using it sparingly, resulting in the gorgeous example offered today.
The car’s Black (Schwarz II) finish is in great shape, marred only by a handful of negligible imperfections typical to any 20+ year old car, none of which are significant enough to appear in the pictures. The body is entirely straight, all of the trim, rubber and glass is in excellent condition and the cars rides on authentic BMW M Parallel 18” staggered wheels wrapped in virtually unused Michelin Pilot Sport tires.
The car’s interior is equally as clean, the black Nappa leather seats showing only negligible wear, the carpets tidy and unmolested, the headliner flawless and the dash and interior panels all in excellent original condition. The car was never smoked in and the windows, sunroof, power seats, heated seats, etc. all function flawlessly. The car comes with all of its original books and manuals, both of its original main keys, a spare key, its original alarm fob, its original tool-kit, its original spare tire and a clean CARFAX report further validating its low mileage, southern California history.
The car is also mechanically excellent, the original M70 engine starting effortlessly, pulling strongly and smoothly through each of the ZF automatic transmission’s gears with expectedly strong and even compression across all 12 cylinders. Putting out 296 hp and 332 ft-lbs of torque, the 5.0L V12 engine makes the car an absolute Autobahn bomber, but ride quality is immaculate whether in town or on the highway, the suspension and brakes each functioning flawlessly, rounding out a solid and secure driving experience that causes one to truly appreciate the incalculable engineering that went into the 8 series. In terms of GT cars, it’s hard to envision anything distinctly more pleasurable to drive, and that includes BMW’s more modern (but less exclusive) offerings.
The E31’s revolutionary CAD based design by Klaus Kapitza is the ominously gutty, patently era-specific representation of nearly $1B in total development cost for BMW. The distinctive model was envisioned in the late 1980s as the marque’s undeniable flagship, symbolic of the excesses of the decade and the fierce battle with Mercedes for European luxury car supremacy. Consequently it was prohibitively expensive, something that didn’t help BMW’s sales targets as the party of the ‘80s came abruptly to a halt with the recession of the early 1990s. Production was therefore relatively limited, further ensuring the 8 Series’ future as an iconic collector’s piece. And as the few other rare BMW models of the era have shot up in the value (the E30 M3, E28 M5, E34 M5, et al), the E31 has quickly begun to follow suit.
This car represents a truly uncommon opportunity to acquire one of the very finest examples of BMW’s finest: a very low mileage, two southern California owner, gorgeous and nicely appointed BMW 850Ci. It’s undoubtedly one of the best on the market and absolutely deserves the consideration of any BMW collector or discerning European car enthusiast looking for a striking weekend driver.