Sport Package Survivor: 1982 BMW 320i

The E21 platform series is typically ignored for its unfortunate arrival between the iconic 2002 and legendary E30 of the late 80s. However, ignoring it doesn’t achieve anything, as these cars effectively continued the 2002 formula with some additional refinement not found on the earlier car. This 1982 model is equipped with the desirable Sport Package and looks to be in excellent condition. Find it here on eBay with no reserve and bidding approaching $2K.

Sharp paint almost looks too good to be original, but a buffer can do wonders on single-stage paint. The E21 would likely have found greater favor among enthusiasts if only its looks were improved – the European-spec cars are downright pretty with their slim bumpers that help accentuate the shark-nose look that this generation of the 3- and 6-Series cars strove to emphasize. Combined with BBS-style basketweave wheels and a front air dam, it was equal parts handsome and aggressive. An LSD was also part of the package.

Inside, the car retains its Sport Package-specific three-spoke steering wheel and Recaro sport seats. The latter are increasingly valuable today, with even complete basketcase examples fetching huge money as rebuilders. The interior presents quite well, and the chrome trim along the windows is in nice shape as well. The chrome trim strip that runs the perimeter of the front and rear glass needs replacing, but this is an easy fix. Although a repaint is still a possibility, most of the factory stickers reside where they should be in the door jambs.

The trunk is meticulous, with a clean mat and factory tool kit still retaining its desirable (and often lost) red-handled screwdriver and tool kit cloth. The fact that the foam pad above the tool kit is still in place also indicates the paint hasn’t been touched, or at least on the surface-level panels only. Other than an incorrect radiator cap in the engine bay and a  few other details, nothing looks grossly out of place – making this an E21 worth looking at if you’re in the market. Sport Package cars seem to only be going up in value, so get in now.

Fast Finds

Comments

  1. joe palmer

    Very nice car and well done

  2. BiggYinn

    Owned 2 of these ….great cars ….2 things i would do is loose the stupid comedy bumbers and go for some neater euro speced ones …(shave the existing ones if others not available) loose the rear side reflectors or whatever they are supposed to be

    Give it a full service then enjoy it

    • John T

      Why screw with the bumpers and the reflectors? If it ain’t broke, Don’t fix it. Just do the full service including a complete tune-up and Drive the wheels off of it!

    • michael

      Thats what I was going to comment :D… Ebay.de has them.

  3. rdc

    I heard they would swap ends quickly especially in wet weather. I think a lot of BMWs of the same era had similar handling.

  4. Mike R

    Looks like a nice car but says salvage title?

    • Theodoric

      Good catch – that would potentially be a deal-breaker.

    • Tommy D

      Should make it affordable, if the frame (uni-body?) checks out, and some history can be gleaned…

  5. angliagt

    I always thought these were really clean looking cars,
    & fairly simple inside,as a driver’s car should be.
    Here’s one that attended our local car show,in 2016.It’s
    owned by a local BMW tech.

    • Dieter Stenger

      Hi, is this Jeff Beyer’s car? He helped me when I restored my Alpina C1 and installed a turbo in my current E21.

  6. Sk

    I had a 1978 and loved it. Easy to work on. Handled well. Under powered though. Could get a little loose in wet weather. .

  7. Tom Hall

    “Please make sure you check your Financial situation before placing a bid on my Vehicle”
    Ahh, geeez, really? You take all the fun out of it. :)

    too bad if it is indeed a salvage title – but if you buy it and keep it until you die, it won’t matter to you :)

  8. Rustytech Member

    Well if it wasn’t painted, it wasn’t wrecked. What does that mean? Likely a flood car, and thus an electrical nightmare! Between that and the value drop caused by the salvage title, I’d stay far away from this one.

    • Dave Wright

      That is a silly assumption. Many times a salvage title is a purely bureaucratic invention…….a car can be stolen, not even damaged and wind up with a salvage title. Sure, ask the question….see what you can learn but the only thing I see with a salvage title for sure, is an opportunity to get a good price. I do have ways to clean a title as well. This car could have had a bumper torn off at some point, the other driver was at fault. It took 4 months to get a new one……all of which the responsible party had to provide a like rental car for…..it is easier to just total it. Those are the kind of silly things I have frequently seen causing a Salvage title…….then there are cars that have been hit hard, without an insurance payout that still have a clean title.

  9. Dieter

    I am a little late to the party, but I have the same car in black, also a sports package, all original paint. I did the bumper conversion, lowered it slightly and put OZ Alpina wheels on it. Completely transforms the looks, love it. I would like to attach a picture but it won’t let me…

  10. Kobus de Wet

    Had 3 of these body style vehicles, 323i, 325i and the 528 and they were all good and honest cars to drive , no funny business, come hell or high water !!

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