Live Auctions

Rare Third Door: 1973 BMW 1802 Touring

Not to infer that they are plentiful, but you don’t have to work too hard to find a BMW 2002 project (a clean, unmodified example is far harder). But to own a true rarity – the one that you won’t see at your local Cars & Coffee – you’ll want to find one with a third door. This 1973 BMW 1802 Touring is one of a very few stateside, as these were never officially imported. Find it here on eBay in very much the project state but very much worth restoring. 

Bidding is currently around $2K with four days left and the reserve unmet. The rust is not insignificant on this car and given the scarcity of body panels like the rear hatch lid seen here, this will not be a cheap car to restore. As a European-market model, it wears the pretty slim chrome bumpers and likely retains H4 lighting up front; note the rear plate bracket for a longer European license plate. The seller is short on details, only noting it’s a barn find and he cannot take it on right now.

Production of the 1802 Touring was short-lived, spanning 1971 to 1974. The 1802 was an earlier variant, preceded by the 1602 and then followed immediately by the 2002, which enjoyed the lengthiest production run. This Touring likely has an interesting history, as it clearly wasn’t recently imported as those cars tend to be in roadgoing condition. The Petri sport steering wheel is a possible clue to enthusiast ownership, but it has obviously languished for years.

Like anything, the rare variants of a popular model tend to be held in high regard by the marque’s loyalists. This Touring should be fully restored to OEM condition, and while the commitment and expense will be high, so will the reward for driving a classic member of the ’02 family. Annual pilgrimages of the BMW faithful to the events like The Vintage Festival in North Carolina would adore this classic Touring, and once restored, I’m certain it would be cherished by any number of future owners.


  1. UJ

    A skilled restorer is needed here. A lot of hand fabrication and a fully equipped shop. Floor pans might need replacing/fabricating as well. Good luck trying to stay above water on this one.

    Merry Xmas UJ

  2. Metoo

    It’s xmas. No one will begrudge you taking a day off.

  3. Redwagon

    But I appreciated a new post as I await the awakening of some older children.

    BTW what makes this a “3rd door”?

    I walked by either this or a 1602 daily in Strasbourg back in ’81. Loved looking at that car, missed it when the owner wasn’t at work.

    • CanuckCarGuy


      • Redwagon

        and here I was looking for a second door on the passenger side.

      • Brian

        It’s not a Suburban ;)

    • Seth KARPEN

      Had a 1602, handled better than anything else available at that time

  4. Dan

    Hey, let’s restore an old car!

    Hey, this is too much work. Shove it into barn!

    And that is my explanation for 75% of the cars that show up here.

  5. Adam Wright

    One thing I learned early on this this game, rare doesn’t always equal money, we found a 2002 Bauer Convertible at a NAVY auction, got it for $300, still didn’t make much money on it.

  6. Adam Wright

    And another time got one for FREE on a deal, a BMW 700, also rare, again, little money was made. Cool cars, but not terribly valuable.

  7. pat gill

    I run a 2002 touring as a daily driver, a very useful car but beware there are quite a few differences to a saloon, the roof line is higher so all the glass is taller, rear wing trims and rear bumper are different, as are the rear seats, they fold down, also the rear lamps are larger! fuel tank is a different shape and the rear wheel arches are fatter so saloon repair panels don’t fit, front end and suspension are the same,

  8. chad

    Adam’s got a nice lill car (BMW’s last econbx till the Mini, 1st uni-body w/only 1730 made).

    I like this hatch too, Jeff. Thanks.

    Only wish 4 a side view – hafta go to the advert…
    back now, looks like oneada Saabs. (Never mind)

  9. Mr. Bond

    I am about 2/3 the way through a rust resto on a regular 2002, and knowing now how they rust, I would never take this one on. Most body panels are going to be hard to find for a touring, and this one will need every one. And some.

    Now that the water has gotten in, it’s the areas you can’t get to that will need attention. It’ll need to be dipped, repaired, then galvanized or epoxy dipped, and that is way beyond me.

  10. Bab

    Ghastly. These can be had in 100% rustless running cond option in Europe anywhere from $14k on up to the $40k for the tii injected model.

    Comments correct about the scarcity of parts and no mention of mechanical condition either.

  11. Pete

    Yeah I had an 1802 way way back in 1986. Loved that car. It would start in the german winters every time. I have seen some of these hatch backs while I was stationed over there. Parts? Well it would have been really simple to find them back then. Just go to a few junkyards and spend 30 bucks to get what you needed. Well anything above the top of the wheel wells, interiors galore, drive trains all you could want. Most of the bodies would be all rusted out though. That is why they ended up in the junkyard. Not because they didn’t run. The inspection criteria in western europe is far more stringent than than here in the USA. In the 80’s the germans made it mandatory for all cars produced there to be at least 90% recyclable. Because of all the rust usually killing a car in the first 7 years of it’s life. So all them 90’s MB’s, VW’s and BMW’s oh yeah and Porcshes are made with recycled rubber, glass and metal. Most of the junkyards would strip a car down to the body shells and send the various different materials out in like a day so to speak. I remember seeing a TV show about it and thinking NOOOOOOO there goes all the used parts. LOL

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