Square Tail Light Euro Car: 1975 BMW 2002

When we talk about European-market examples of popular U.S. models, the conversation around BMW 2002s almost always focuses on the round-light cars. I’m not sure why, other than those cars are already more collectible than the later square-light models, so perhaps enthusiasts just gravitate towards them regardless of which country they were sold new in. It’s to the point that I very rarely see any chatter about the square tail light examples in gray-market form like this forlorn example listed here on eBay with no reserve and bidding to just above $1K at the moment with all of its desirable Euro bits still intact. Even if you’re biased against the square tail light models, that’s a smoking deal.

Of course, the most obvious component is the slimmer, prettier chrome bumpers that all European-spec models had. This car likely came back with a member of the Armed Forces who got a discount on shipping when he returned stateside. The other details include some desirable period alloy wheels that resemble BBS or BSAs with a little bit of dish, a look that was popular when these cars were new and has remained so ever since. The seller provides next to no information about this car’s history or its condition, which is surprising considering an enthusiast would definitely try and talk up the car’s rarity or unique features for being a gray market model. At the least, you’d expect the bumpers to be mentioned, but not here.

Image courtesy of Only02

Now, to some extent, it may not get as many enthusiasts’ blood pumping as you’d expect because so many square tail light models have been converted to Euro bumpers by now. It’s not an incredibly difficult swap, and far cheaper than buying a whole car just to have the bumpers. But European models often have other bonuses, like H4 lighting, front and rear fog lamps (or at least the wiring for it), higher compression engines, and lighter weight overall. Obviously, this is a finished example of a 2002 with similar wheels and the European bumpers, but it’s not hard to see how this woodlands find could look far better once cleaned up and out of the weeds. If it isn’t completely rotten at the bottom, it’s certainly cheap enough to keep an eye on.

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  1. Mike

    If you’re trying to sell, pull it out of it’s hell hole so buyers don’t know how badly it was stored. Sure, they’ll know it was stored badly but not THAT bad.

    • Ward William

      They will know when they open and door and see the ground straight through where the floor used to be. ;-)

  2. Lance

    Mike, I have a feeling that the ONLY way this car could have been stored more badly than it was is if there was a stream flowing under it. Those lichens growing on the rubber window seals and stainless trim take a couple of years to grow that much. These cars are quite desirable but they are known for having some bad rust issues particularly around the rear suspension towers and quarters. You can bet those are likely pretty rusted out on this car.

  3. Maestro1 Member

    You’d have to go to the car and put your hands on it, get it out of the weeds and up in the air to look at its bones. Then make a decision. These cars aren’t cheap to make nice, so don’t fall in love until you have a clear picture of its condition.

  4. Maverick

    Why was it parked in a I don’t car spot. Mechanic issues.

  5. TimM

    I always liked these cars but this one with 4 flat tires and sunk in the mud up to the frame and five pictures in the eBay ad is no way to present a car for sale!! So kids if your reading this post this is the perfect example of what not to do if you really want to sell your car!!!!


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