Copart Find: 1973 BMW 2002 Tii

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Over the weekend, one of the biggest annual pilgrimages of vintage BMW owners wrapped up in North Carolina. The event simply known as The Vintage is a bucket list item for me, but I’m waiting until next year to attend once my field-find BMW 320 is completed and road-worthy. In the meantime, cars like this 1973 BMW 2002 Tii spotted here on Copart provide some welcome inspiration for the types of cars that would be wicked road-trip machines en route to a massive gathering of like-minded enthusiasts. Thanks to Barn Finds reader Tony D. for the find! 

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I don’t know how a desirable car like the Tii ended up on Copart, especially one that looks relatively complete. The listing says it has damage to the rear, but my eyes can’t identify what went so wrong that the only choice was to total it out. Perhaps a previous owner didn’t have collector car insurance, or maybe didn’t care enough to buy it back. The interior looks very close to being OEM correct, right down to the Tii-specific clock mounted on the dash. I can’t tell for certain, but it even looks like a period-correct Blaupunkt radio in the console.

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The 1972 Tii’s tend to get all the attention because of their rare plastic intake pipes. The big deal factor comes in because over time, plastic cracks and the pipes were replaced with the more common aluminum intake pipes. This being a ’73 car means it came with aluminum pipes from the factory, and thankfully (well, depends on which side of the coin you’re on) this ’02 retains its original fuel injection system. Some owners had a tendency to swap over to a carb set-up, which was not necessarily an upgrade.

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Perhaps the most desirable aspect of this 2002 (in addition to its paint code and Tii specifications) is that it’s a round tail light model with the smaller chrome bumpers. Overall, there’s very little not to like about this car unless there’s frame damage lurking or a lot more rust present than is immediately obvious based on the photos (I’m looking at you, rear shock towers). I can see some rust beneath the license plate and along the sills, but no way to tell how deep it goes. What do you think this ’02’s history is? Did it belong to an enthusiast at one point or has it lead the life of a used car, being treasured by no one?

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Comments

  1. rdc

    Treasured. Dealer installed Behr air and non-stock wheels. Looks like it sat a long time somewhere after being non-drivable.

  2. Dolphin Member

    From the VIN my decoder says this is a genuine US market 2002tii from 1973. Unfortunately there is no information except the VIN and some photos.

    Since it’s in Texas there’s a chance it isn’t too rusty, and I see no perforation in the visible body. The front shock towers look good but you would want to check the rear shock towers, and you can’t see them. The FI system on the engine looks correct, but there’s no information on internal engine condition or if it even runs. I think there’s no chance that the 5-digit mileage on the ODO is the while story, and I think it’s gone around at least once, but from the general condition of the car, maybe not twice.

    Too bad the original wheels have been replaced by some generic aftermarket wheels. It’s also missing the front grille chrome, but it looks like it has its original bumpers and they are in useable condition.

    If I wanted a tii I would definitely check out this car. It’s odd that Copart would have a car like this but stranger things have happened. If far away from Dallas, you could hire an inspection service to have a look at it and get some more basic information, or get someone nearby from the BMW CCA to look it over, but then there is the risk they will like it too.

    The median auction price recently paid for these is $31K, and the high price paid so far is $41K, so if it’s basically a good car it could end up being a good buy. I don’t imagine there are many of these left for sale that are basically sound and haven’t rusted out.

    It looks like there is a Buy it now option, but it’s garbled on the Copart page and not clear.

    • photog02

      How are you seeing the Kugelfischer pump on this? I’ve spent way too much time staring at this car’s photos, followed by trying to get the same perspective from my own ’73 tii with the front air filter removed. I just don’t see how it is possible to tell if the pump is intact.

      I did notice the fuel filter (among other parts) is gone. If the K-pump is still there, it might need some expensive time with someone like Wes Ingram…

      • Dolphin Member

        The angle of the Copart engine bay photo is exactly wrong to show the injection pump, which is small and low on the left front of the engine. The photo here is from another car and it shows the pump.

        You can’t tell from the Copart photo whether the pump is there or not, but there is no evidence that it isn’t there.

      • photog02

        Dolphin – I agree completely regarding the angle of the Copart picture. I stood in front of my own tii and verified that you cannot see the K-pump from that angle. The pump mounts too low. The fuel supply line might be visible, but it is not shown in the provided photo.

        Given that this is Copart, and that other parts are missing, I would be hesitant to assume that this extremely valuable, extremely necessary, part is present.

  3. pbryantr

    What’s sad is seeing the BMWCCA decal in the rear window. It makes me wonder what the story really is.

  4. Bob S

    been in at least a front end smash, as it should not have the air intake fitting on the right side of the rad support if it is a Tii.

    • Dolphin Member

      Bob, I am no expert on the 2002tii, but there are photos of the 1973 2002tii that show that same air intake fitting to the top right of the radiator shown on the Copart car (but without an air intake hose attached).

      Here are a couple:

      http://blog.hemmings.com/index.php/2014/01/08/hemmings-find-of-the-day-1973-bmw-2002tii/#&gid=1&pid=5

      http://bringatrailer.com/2011/04/22/1973-bmw-2002tii/

      There are other engine bay photos of the 1973 2002tii that you can find that do not have that air intake fitting. I think what happened is that some cars were made with the fitting, and some without, maybe because they were using different runs of bodies.

      So unless those photos and the above reasoning can be shown to be wrong, since the VIN checks out as a proper 1973 2002tii I think it’s likely that the fitting belongs there and isn’t the result of fixing after a crash.

  5. Michael V.

    After looking at the pictures of the gunk smoodged on the speedometer and all over the seats, I’m thinking this car was soaked in the recent floods in Texas.

    • rdc

      Good point as floods just ruin cars.

  6. George

    Treasured by previous owner, but not by ex-wife or estate most likely.

  7. JamestownMike

    IF it was a flood car, it would be listed as such under Federal law. Car is sold without keys. Wonder why it’s there??

  8. Howard A Member

    One of my favorite things about Barn Finds, is not whether we would ever buy a car like this, but the connection in the past. When I had my ’71 MGB, a good friend bought a car exactly like this new in ’73. He was a plumber’s boy, so he had a few bucks.( the MG was half the price of this car) It was my 1st experience with a German sports sedan. Even though few cars, I thought, could top my MG, this was a nice car. Ate my MG for lunch in performance, handled nice, stopped nice, quiet, 4 people could carry on a conversation at speed, just a nice car. After a couple years, the Beemer began to have transmission trouble ( 2nd gear synchro, I think) and it began using a lot of oil. Meanwhile, the trusty ol’ MGB chugged on and on. He got rid of it the 2nd time the trans began to crunch again. Never really followed BMW after that, as they got bigger and fancier. I liked these much better. These aren’t that rare, and this particular car is shot. Very expensive to repair. Still, I believe they led the way in sports sedans at the time.

  9. Michael Zack

    Lots of flooding there. I bought I old flood certain. I will pass on all of them. This car has a non tii nose and repaint

  10. rdc

    Are you sure the tii had a different nose? The 74-75 Turbo 2002 had no bumper and a front air dam or spoiler. That was the only differences I knew of.

  11. Puhnto

    Waxing nostalgic. Got to test drive one of these in Monterey, back in 1973. Same color. It was an eye opening treat for someone who was driving an Austin Mini Cooper at the time! (I loved my Mini but the Tii was considerably more sophisticated.)

  12. alan

    Radiator supports without the right side intake tube are unique to the tii. For the those with a carb a rubber hose connects the right hand side rad support air tube to the air filter housing. As short supplies of the correct rad support disappeared this was the only replacement choice and in some cases it may have been the cheaper choice.

  13. wagon master

    Every car I’ve checked out in person on co part has been a kinky deal. Believe me, something is amiss with this car and all those sold by them. There is a reason it’s there! bought one classic car from co part and regretted it so much I patched it together and dumped it.

    • Horse Radish

      I couldn’t agree more.
      Most of their (older)cars are consignments and the sellers don’t want to be bothered. (Or better said: they want more than is reasonable)
      The exposure to numerous less intelligent buyers usually result in sales for double what the cars are worth.
      If you cannot find them elsewhere, then why not

  14. Dave W

    When I log in with my Copart account, I don’t see a “buy it now” option, but Copart consigners have the right to change the terms of the sale any time during the process, even AFTER a deal has been closed and an offer accepted. Makes it a pain to deal with them sometimes. There may have been a “buy it now” price initially that has since been removed.

    Interestingly, there are five other 2002s from years 1971-76 for sale on Copart right now, including a ’74 tii, but this one doesn’t even come up when you search for BMW 2002.

  15. Jeff Staff

    If I recall correctly, a lot of these have had their noses replaced over the years. Chrome grills are desirable, so no surprise they’ve either been shanked by an employee or retained by a previous owner. Aftermarket wheels are cheap and not typical for an ’02 enthusiast. Could be a flood car or a long-abandoned project. I would think being in Texas the interior would be dry-rotted if it sat outside for long periods of time. Layer of silt on the engine bay and interior grime could be indications of flood…or just dirt from being stored with the windows down.

  16. Dolphin Member

    I am surprised that so many people are down on this car. It might be a flood car, and that’s a risk because I could not find any information on the web saying that Texas car sales must identify flood cars.

    That’s why you go to check the car out. Is there sand or mud trapped in the lower parts of the body? The car looks pretty unrusty, but is there rust in those lower parts of the body? Are all the major components present, like the injection pump? Etc, etc.

    Even if it’s a flood car, which there is no evidence for so far, just guessing, it might have been a freshwater flood, which could make it fairly easy to deal with, and worth it given the rarity of the car.

    I have no problem about the nose of the car. I found a couple of photos of great looking 2002tii s with that same air intake fitting to the top right of the radiator (with no air hose attached)—-discussed above.

    I think Jeff is right—the dust (or silt?…who knows?) could be from being left to sit out in Texas. The seats look to me like they have sat in the Texas sun for a long while. Nothing unusual about that, since half the cars we see on here have ratty interiors like this one, including dried out, faded, cracked vinyl seats.

    I know that from the VIN it’s a genuine ’73 2002tii. I have no stake in it being a wonderful 2002tii. I just wish it were a lot closer, because at $1600 so far it is an absolute steal, and I would definitely bid on it provided I could check it out in person first. But I don’t think it will go that cheap.

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