Year of manufacture #1985
Recorded mileage 115,973
Asking price £15,995
Vendor Old Colonel Cars, Herts; 07407 477843; oldcolonelcars.co.uk
WHEN IT WAS NEW
Max power 218bhp
Max torque 229lb ft
0-60mph 7 secs
Top speed 143mph
This ‘analogue M5’ was stored for 10 years, and lots of fettling has been carried out since it came into the current ownership four years ago. Sadly there’s no service book, but there are bills to support a cylinder-head rebuild, new engine mounts, anti-roll bar rubbers, track-rod ends and a recent water pump, thermostat, viscous coupling and fuel tank, plus rebuilt front brake calipers. It’s been partially repainted, with new coachlines and badges, but there’s no serious rot. A couple of spots, each near the strut-top mounts, want cleaning off, de-rusting and painting, but they’re not as bad as they first look. Inside, the owner has sourced better seat material from another E28, which shows only light wear to the velour. The driver’s door card has suffered from a little shrinkage, which may be put right before sale but is an easy fix, and the dash plastics are good, with only almost imperceptible cracks starting. The very ’80s stalk-mounted Blaupunkt remote graphic equaliser control still works, as do the electric windows and sunroof.
The engine sports a new header tank (they deteriorate with age) and the old one is in the boot, along with other removed parts. The coolant is a clear blue, the oil clean (only 300 miles old). Also in the boot is a full set of tools and the original spare wheel with 390mm Avon Turbospeed, but the car sits on a slightly larger set of 15in E34 alloys to make tyre choice easier (and cheaper): it wears 2017-dated 225/60 Kumho Ecstas, and the original wheels are included.
Turn on the ignition, press the ‘check’ button in the roof console diagnostic display and all the LEDs light, and the brake warning correctly goes out when you press the pedal. It fires easily, the deep #BMW-M30
burble sharpened by a newish Powerflow exhaust – hence the extra soundproofing in the boot floor. It drives sweetly, with that very mechanical feel of a proper 5 Series. There’s plenty of torque, but it likes to rev, too. The gearchange is good, it doesn’t wander and the brakes pull up well, with a typically weighty pedal. Temperature didn’t rise above a third on the gauge. A sorted car for grown-up hooligans, with MoT until May.
EXTERIOR Unscuffed; some new paint
INTERIOR About as good as used ones get, with new seat fabric
MECHANICALS In rude health
For Fine old-school bruiser
Against A couple of rust spots need catching on the inner wings
SHOULD I BUY IT?
Not a full-blown M5, but needs nothing major, great to drive, and all for less money than a nice 2002 or E30 325i Sport