Drive or Restore: 1974 BMW 2002 tii

2002d

Throughout the BMW world, there are consistently tremors of which cars are going to be the next model to rise in value. Although high-quality 2002s have been on that list for a while, honest drivers that still need a good amount of finishing work are rapidly becoming desirable as well. This 1974 2002 tii here on eBay will need a fair amount of bodywork in the future, but it’s a running, driving example that you can enjoy while tackling the cosmetics in phases. 

2002c

This tii has lots of desirable bits, from the Recaro seats to the European-style chrome bumpers. It also is a rare factory sunroof model. The three-spoke steering wheel is a take-it-or-leave it option for me; personally, I like the sport wheel out of an E21 for an OEM+ upgrade. No word on whether the dash is cracked, but given it lives in climate with lots of sun, I’m going to assume it needs replacing to be perfect. The Recaros are likely the ones found in the E21, but appear to be cloth. I’d want to have them recovered in black vinyl to match the rear bench.

2002b

The seller claims the motor runs well enough that there’s a likelihood it was rebuilt at some point. Though tii’s are sometimes harvested for the Kugelfischer injection system or because previous owners wanted to run carbs, this example appears unmodified. One of the modifications the seller did perform is a sensible one, which is the upgrade to a 5-speed gearbox. Other enhancements include an aftermarket suspension, consisting of Bilsteins and unnamed lowering springs and larger sway bars. The battery has been moved to the trunk for better weight distribution and the next owner will have his choice of either the Minilite wheels shown or stock BMW steelies.

2002a

The square tail light models were slapped with the generous “park bench” bumpers front and rear, so the presence of the neatly-tucked European-style chrome bumpers is a visually-pleasing upgrade. While the Golf Yellow paint is a tad rough, it’s one of the best factory colors to come on a 2002. More importantly, the rear shock towers are solid and none of the rust appears to be anything out of the ordinary for a daily-driven car of this vintage. Bidding is already over $5,000 with plenty of time left in the auction. Cars like these are always interesting to watch as it provides some indication as to the market’s appetite for original projects over turnkey drivers.

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Comments

  1. Doyler

    DRIVE!

    What cosmetic issues?

  2. Rick

    Bought one of these in 2001 (’74 2002 tii) had the stupid looking big US bumpers, anyhow bought it wrecked (hit lightly in the rear, clean title) so I welded in a new back panel (after having it pulled) and front bulkhead (because of rust), replaced door hinges, window rubbers etc., and had it painted basecoat/ clearcoat, interior was presentable, motor ran good but was gettting tired. The car came w/ receipts showing $12K had been spent rebuilding the engine/trans ten years earlier. Was that lovely Turkis color and had a suroof and a/c. Anyhow I dorve it for several years and sold it for $7700 in summer of 2009. Guy I sold it to redid the interior upgraded the wheels and put it in the RM Auction in Monterey in summer of 2010, two people wanted it and it finally hammered at $26K. Point I’m trying to make is tii’s can be worth serious coin if totally up to snuff.

  3. grant

    I love these. A friend’s father bought two round light models in the early 90’s, one wrecked in front the other in the rear. Took him a year but he made one nice car out of them, sold the rest of the parts to partially fund the project (and avoid getting divorced.) He sold it on a few years later after telling the buyer about the project. Couple months later it was being sold as original. Jim couldn’t stand for that, (honesty and all; he just couldn’t stomach lying) so he bought it back at a price he still won’t share. It’s a gorgeous car, he did great work. It’ll never be for sale again as long as he’s living, and I’ve already told my friend I want dibs. Unfortunately, I don’t imagine I’ll be able to afford it when the time comes. Anyway, I’m wandering down memory lane. This is a neat car square taillights and all. I hope it gets the attention it deserves.

  4. Mike S

    Had a 74′ 2002TII. Loved the car but hated the fuel injection.

  5. Bob S

    If the sheet metal is solid, great candidate for a resto. All I would change is the seats and steering wheel and add nice paint in the stock colour. The Euro bumpers are great with the square taillights.

  6. 1fst2002

    I’ve owned probably 20 or more 1600s and 2002s, about 7-8 years ago you could buy a nice driver from 2500 to 5000, now a project car will bring that or more, I sold a 74tii all original running and diriving for 3000.00 with no rust, how I would like to find one for that now… If you don’t like the way the bumpers stick out drill a 1/4″ hole in the number shocks push them in and put a sheet metal screw in the hole….

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