SOTW: BMW Z3 2.8
Shed finds winter's an opportune time to make purchase of a six-pot roadster
Yes, we know there’s little to recommend the basic 140hp 1.9 Z3, but this one has leather in the cabin, some service history and a long MOT in the glovebox, and – most importantly – a 2.8 six-cylinder motor under the bonnet.
Hmm, yes, the bonnet. The Z3 is not the most elegant BMW. To pinpoint its stylistic awkwardness, simply use your hand, credit card or sandwich to conceal the area directly ahead of the front wheels.
He may well have been tugging my chain, and that cultural variance has certainly gone now, but the designer’s provenance might give us an insight into the Z3’s ‘interesting’ styling. At least this Shed’s silver paint hides its blobbiness better than darker colours, and the 2.8’s wider rear track adds a sense of purpose.
You can supercharge 2.8s up to 400hp-plus, but you’ll be well out of Shed territory there. Why bother? The standard torque will take it from 80 to 100mph in top gear in under 10 seconds – more than three seconds quicker than the same exercise will take in a Boxster.
Yes, the Z3 does use the E30’s semi-trailing rear suspension rather than the E36’s multilink setup, but it’s still a proper performance convertible from one of the world’s best auto makers. In its day it was the ‘Editor’s Most Wanted Vehicle’ at respected US buyers’ guide Edmunds.com.
We can see a scuff on our Shed’s rear wing, but the hood (which should be power operated) and plastic rear window both look to be split-free. We can’t see the state of consumables like tyres and brakes, or the proximity of the next service. Such startup costs are in the lap of the Bavarian gods. Place your bets.
Original ad reproduced below.
- 1997 (R reg)
- 124,319 miles
2 Doors, Manual, Petrol, 124,319 miles, Metallic Silver, MOT-08-2013, 4 Owners. ROAD TAX, SERVICE HISTORY, DRIVE AWAY INSURANCE, 07864635455, www.ttwcarsales.co.uk, VISIT OUR WEBSITE www.ttwcarsales.co.uk, AROUND 200 CARS INSTOCK, ABS, Alloy wheels, Central locking, Immobiliser, Passenger airbag, Radio/Cassette, Traction control, Electric door mirrors, Alarm, PAS, Trip computer, Drivers airbag, Front electric windows, Electrically adjustable drivers seat, Service indicator, Electrically adjustable passenger seat, Front fog lights. Insurance Group:16, DRIVE AWAY INSURANCE AVALIABLE. £999 +VAT