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Mileage: 63,416 Indicated Miles (Total Mileage Unknown)
Engine: M10 4-Cylinder Engine
Transmission: 4-Speed Manual Transmission
Exterior color: Mint Green Exterior (070)
Interior: Beige Interior
H&R Sport Springs
Bilstein Sport Shocks
3-Spoke Steering Wheel
Recovered Front Seats
Alpine Stereo w/ Bluetooth
Coco Floor Mats
Euro Chrome Bumpers
13-Inch Steel Wheels
Cooper Trendsetter SE Tires
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.
This 1975 Mint Yellow 2002 came to us as part of a bundle of 2002s from a collector who favors unique colors of the 2002 palette. Shod in Mint Green over a Beige Leather interior with matching green Coco floor mats it makes a statement, always drawing thumbs up from enthusiasts and non-enthusiasts alike. Other than a 3-Spoke steering wheel, Alpine stereo, Silverline exhaust, and Euro-style chrome bumpers it completely original. The OEM U.S. market impact bumpers are included in the sale. Importantly, all of the stock California emissions controls are intact, and functional meaning it is smog and CARB compliant. There is a thorough binder of records showing extensive documentation from the original purchase invoice in 1975 to the early 2000s. It was originally purchased from H&E German Car Sales in Palo Alto, California on September 2, 1975 for a total purchase price of $7143.76—that’s $34,011.60 in today’s money! The documentation from that point on is extensive showing California registrations and frequent regular services for the next thirty years. The trail picks up again a few years ago when it landed with the collector that I purchased it from in Texas. He first sold it to an owner in Europe, then bought it back before selling it to me. The exterior was refinished at some point, as well as having European style bumpers installed. The original impact bumper holes are present (which we plugged with rubber grommets), in case someone wants to revert it back to the original impact bumpers. In preparation for sale we had 2002 specialist Mark Hutto give it thorough service. This included re-routing and cleaning up the engine bay wiring, vacuum lines, fuel lines, and emission control equipment, battery, battery cables and hold down, valve cover, valve cover gasket, coolant flush, and replacing the reverse light switch. He then replaced the dashboard and rebuilt the heater box including the blower motor and heater valve, replaced the windshield, front and rear window trim, and removing the beginning of surface corrosion in the windshield channel. He also performed a tune-up including tuning the carburetor for Colorado altitude, replacing the drive belt, points, and condensor, and a fresh oil change. We had our fabricator repair a shoddy fix to the driver’s door hinge mount, ensuring it will last for long run and repaired the beginnings of surface corrosion in the spare tire well. As a result, there is no rust and it runs fantastic. The end result is a well-sorted 2002 in a rare color combo that would be equally at home as a useable collector. It receives compliments and attention on every drive and is equally at home on display at the local Cars and Coffee as it is ripping up some of Colorado’s finest canyon roads. We would like to find a new owner, who will continue this car’s unique legacy for the next chapter of its story, and enjoy it for years to come.
The Mint Green paint is in excellent condition. It has been repainted at some point, but there are no glaring defects and even close examination reveals only minor imperfections in the form of a few dents around the vehicle commensurate with age and use. There is evidence of filler in the driver’s side rear quarter panel. There is no notable rust; Mark Hutto repaired the beginnings of a spot in the windshield channel and we addressed the door brake mount and spare tire well. All trim is intact and in good condition, and is original with the exception of the Euro-style chrome bumpers. There are some small door dings in the belt-line trim. The headlight, indicator, and brake light lenses are clear and crack-free with the exception of light spider cracks in both taillights and the right rear marker. The windshield is excellent thanks to our replacing it, along with the front and rear window trim. The windshield wiper arms and inserts are in good condition; the speed fairing on the driver’s side wiper is present. The 13-inch E21 wheels are in very good shape with good Roundel emblems and the Cooper Trendsetter SE tires have over 75% tread remaining.
The Beige interior is in excellent shape. Open the door and you greeted by the perfect 2002 smell—classic vinyl with a hint of gasoline. 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 is protected by matching Coco floor mats. The front E21 stock seats are in excellent shape thanks to being recovered. The door cards are in good shape, but there are small imperfections in the trim and door card material. The “scissor” door handles are quintessentially classic BMW. The manual windows operate smoothly and quietly. The door brakes are quiet and we repaired the driver’s door brake mount. The dashboard is crackfree, with the exception of a hairline crack in front of the instrument cluster cover. The 3-spoke steering wheel is clean with just a little patina. The headliner does not sag but does have some minor staining. All instruments function properly. The stereo has been upgraded with an Alpine CDE-143BT head unit playing through front speakers and 6x9 inch rear speakers. The heat blows warm and all controls function correctly. The blower motor is quiet. The trunk flooring panels are present, as is the spare tire and jack underneath. Three keys are included with the car.
As it sits this is a turn-key 2002. There are no unresolved mechanical issues. The M10 fires on command on cold or hot starts. It idles smoothly and pulls strongly to redline. It runs cool, even on hot days, and doesn’t leak or spot. All cylinders have good compression, 130 across the board uncorrected for Colorado altitude. The 4-speed transmission shifts perfectly smooth and the shifter bushings are crisp and tight. The clutch take-up is correct. The H&R and Bilstein suspension is firm and compliant and the brakes are strong with plenty of pad thickness and rotor run-out remaining. There are no driveline or wheel bearing noises or vibrations. The Silverline exhaust is quiet with no drone. As it sits, this is a turn-key 2002 ready to be enjoyed by its new owner. None of us would hesitate for a moment to drive it across country.