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Mileage: 17,002 Indicated Miles (Total Mileage Unknown)
Engine: Imagineering Paul Burke Hot Rod M10 2-Liter 4-Cylinder Engine
Transmission: Getrag G245 5-Speed Manual Transmission
Exterior color: Malaga Exterior (027)
Interior: Saddle Brown / Black Interior
Less than 700 Miles Since Complete Restoration
3:91 Limited Slip Differential
Estimated 170 Crank Horsepower
Imagineering CNC 3D Domed 11:1 Pistons
BMW E30 1.8i Cylinder Head (flows better than BMW 121 and E12 heads)
Imagineering A31 High Performance Camshaft
All Balanced Internals
Mikuni 44mm Dual Side-Draft Carburetors w/ Velocity Stacks
Electronic Fuel Pump
Tii Distributor w/ Pertronix Electric Trigger
Bosch High Density Coil
Tii Low-Mount Alternator
1-5/8-Inch High-Flow Stahl Header
Bavaria Center Section / Resonator
OEM BMW 2002 Turbo Rear Muffler
Triple Core Radiator
Spal Electric Pusher Fan
Bav Auto Sport Springs
Bilstein Sport Shocks
19mm Bav Auto Front Sway Bar
16mm Bav Auto Rear Sway Bar
Top End Performance Front Shock Tower Brace
Top End Performance Rear Shock Tower Brace / Battery Mount
Complete Bare Metal / Glass Out Paint and Body Restoration by Arvid Unterseher (Classic Restoration and Collision Repair)
Complete Bumper, Trim and Seal Replacement
Stainless Steel Brake Lines
No Sunroof (slicktop)
Personal 3-Spoke Steering Wheel
Hella H4 High Wattage Headlights
Front and Rear Side Marker Delete
Complete Interior Replacement
Two-Tone Black / Saddle Brown Corbeau Seats
Two-Tone Black / Saddle Brown Rear Seat Recovered to Match
New Old Stock (NOS) Crack-Free Dashboard
Replacement Saddle Brown Door Cards
Rebuilt Heater Box
15-Inch Minilite Wheels
195/55R15 Yokohama S-Drive Tires
Extensive Build / Restoration Detailed Below
The BMW 02 Series sedans were defining models for BMW. Smaller and lighter than the Neue Klasse sedans they were derived from, the 02 cemented its own legacy and set the stage for the legendary BMW 3 Series that followed. It was the lens through which a generation of Americans discovered BMW and passed down that enthusiasm to their children. Its simple, sporty three-box design has aged into an iconic form that is recognized far beyond the vestiges of the BMW enthusiast. The best 02 Series was the 2002, powered by the 2-liter version of the 4-cylinder M10 engine. That engine was mated to a chassis, suspension, and brakes that were unapologetically driver focused, yet all in a comfortable two-door sedan that you could drive you mother to church in. Rust, neglect, and age have taken their toll, but a loyal and fanatical following have ensured that a healthy population of 2002s remains compared to other cars of the period—a testament to how good the 2002 is. As time continues to march forward the 2002 has enjoyed notable appreciation, with sorted “roundie” taillight examples fetching the highest premiums.
This Concours-condition hot rod Malaga over Saddle Brown 1972 “roundie” 2002 is by far the nicest 2002 we’ve ever had at Glen Shelly—it was described by builder Mark Hutto as some of his finest work. The owner, who commissioned the build, is obsessive to a fault, leaving no stone unturned and no area un-addressed in the restoration—it was intended to be his legacy car. It was first imported to New York in May of 1972. He originally purchased it in May of 1993, with records dating back to 1984, and used it as his fair weather daily driver for the next two decades (he always had a truck for the winter months). In the early part of this decade, he decided to do an open checkbook restoration of the 2002.
It started with a glass-out, bare-metal, subframe-removed restoration of the body and re-finished it in the original Malaga Red color by Arvid Unterseher of Classic Restoration in Longmont, Colorado. The work was all encompassing with literally no piece of the car left untouched and extensive sheet metal repair and OEM panel replacements. The final labor tally included over 400 hours at a total cost of over $26,000—more than most very nice 2002s are worth complete. Every single piece of bright-work, chrome, trim, seals, glass, and light lenses were sourced and replaced in the process (many were new-old stock and sourced at great expense in some instances). The interior was restored with a perfect crack-free dashboard, Personal 3-Spoke steering wheel, headliner, carpet kit, door and window seals, center console, sun visors, door cards, and other interior pieces. Corbeau seats were re-covered in black with Saddle Brown centers, and the rear seats were rebuilt and re-covered to match.
Then the real magic of the build happened—under the hood. Classic BMW engine builder Paul Burke at Imagineering exchanged the stock motor for a high performance 2.0-liter M10. The build consisted of a 1.8i M10 cylinder head (which breathes significantly better than a carbureted 2.0 head) with a multi-angle valve job, under cut intake guides, Viton valve seals, M30B35 valve springs, and an Imagineering A31 high-performance camshaft. CNC 3D domed high-compression 11:1 pistons reside in the block, along with zero-hour balanced internals, a fresh oil pump and components, timing components, and an upgraded head gasket, plus standard bearings and seals. Mikuni 44mm dual side-draft carburetors breathing through screened velocity stacks deliver air and fuel, while 1 5/8” diameter Stahl headers mated to a Bavaria center / resonator section and NOS 2002 Turbo rear muffler make up the exhaust. Fuel is delivered through an electronic fuel pump conversion and spark comes from a tii distributor with a Pertronix trigger and a Bosch high intensity coil. A 3-core 2002 radiator and an electric Spal fan in place of the mechanical fan provide cooling. Although this example has never been run on a dyno, similar engine builds have netted over 170 horsepower.
The power is routed through an upgraded 228mm clutch to a Getrag G245 5-speed transmission, custom driveshaft, and a 3.91 limited-slip differential. Suspension upgrades consist of Bilstein Sport shocks and Bavarian Autosport springs, Bavarian Autosport19mm front and 16mm rear sway bars, and Top End Performance front and rear strut braces with the battery re-located to the rear for proper weight distribution. All associated mounts and rubber were replaced in the process. 15-inch Minilite wheels wearing Yokohama S-Drive tires provide plenty of traction to put that increased performance to the road.
In the process of the restoration, the front and rear subframes and associated suspension components were painted black, along with replacement hard fuel and brake lines mated to stainless soft brake lines. The wiring harness was completely redone, and adapted for the highly modified engine and associated components. The heater box and controls were rebuilt, along with the fresh air controls, windshield wiper controls and wiper assembly, and all running gear. Looking at the undercarriage (lift pictures are on our website if you are reading this elsewhere), one can really appreciate the artistry and attention to detail that went into this restoration.
The cosmetic condition of this 2002 is the same or better as the day it was originally delivered thanks to the extensive restoration. The Malaga Red paint is in excellent condition. As was detailed in the summary, it has recently gone under an extensive restoration of the paint and bodywork. There are no glaring defects, and it takes a very keen eye to notice any imperfections. Any notion of rust that that was present before the restoration has been completely repaired, resulting in an impeccably clean, rust-free chassis. All trim is intact and in fantastic condition. The headlight, indicator, and brake light lenses are clear and crack-free. The windshield is crack-free and has no notable pitting. The side window and rear glass are in great shape. The windshield wiper arms and inserts are in good condition; the speed fairing on the driver’s side wiper is present. The 15-inch Minilites are in impeccable condition. They are wearing new Roundel emblems and look fantastic. The Yokohama S-Drive tires have 90% tread left.
The Saddle Brown and black interior is in excellent shape, thanks to extensive refinishing and replacement of any worn out parts. Open the door and you are greeted by what can only be described as what a 2002 smelled like the day it was delivered. There are no odors—other than that wonderful 2002 smell—and it has never been smoked in. The carpet has no stains or tears and was replaced as a part of the restoration. The headliner was also replaced and is in very good condition. The front crossbar has slight sag, and there are some slight wrinkles above the driver’s door seals. The front seats are in excellent shape, thanks to being recovered. All the seat functions work correctly. The door cards are also in great shape as NOS originals. The “scissor” door handles are quintessentially classic BMW. The manual windows operate smoothly and quietly. The door seals have been replaced, resulting in one of the quietest 2002s we’ve had. The dashboard is also the nicest one we have ever seen in a 2002. The 3-spoke Personal steering wheel has the perfect amount of patina, a nod to this car’s prior legacy. All instruments function properly. There is no stereo, which isn’t needed because of the glorious induction note from the velocity stacks on those Mikuni carburetors! The heat blows warm and all controls function correctly. The blower motor is quiet and was replaced in the restoration. There are some slight wrinkles along the passenger side center console panel. The trunk flooring panels are present, with matching carpet on top of them. There is slight discoloration on the carpet from the matching Minilite spare tire due its larger size and not fitting flush in the spare tire well. There are multiple sets of keys, along with a thick binder of records dating back to 1984, along with receipts and invoices for the restoration—the total bill is north of $60K!
The M10 fires on command on cold or hot starts, although it needs a few seconds for the fuel pressure to build after sitting for a long time, which is normal operation for a 2002. It idles smoothly and pulls very strongly—it is far and away the fastest 2002 we have had at Glen Shelly. The Imagineering / Paul Burke motor is a masterpiece. It pulls hard throughout the whole rev range, and the induction noise from the Mikuni’s is intoxicating. It does not leak, does not run hot and the electronic ignition does not need the periodic adjustments that the original mechanical ignition did. The 5-speed transmission shifts perfectly smooth and the shifter bushings are crisp and tight. The clutch take-up is correct and it does not slip. The steering has the typical feel of a 2002 steering box, but it does not have excessive play or the dead spot that is common in so many 2002s. The suspension is firm, but compliant, and the brakes are strong with plenty of pad thickness and rotor run-out remaining. There are no excessive driveline or wheel bearing noises or vibrations. The Stahl header to Bavaria center section and 2002 Turbo muffler adds the perfect amount of grunt without being overbearing when cruising. As it sits, this is the definition of a turn-key Concours-condition 2002 ready to be enjoyed by its new owner. Even the undercarriage is immaculate, which can be seen in the lift shots on our website if you are reading this elsewhere. None of us would hesitate for a moment to drive it across country.