The seller of today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe BMW M Coupe says it’s one of only 678 offered with the S54 powerhouse. Let’s see if that, its seemingly immaculate condition, and its price has you saying send in the clowns.

Let’s disambiguate the genus of last Friday’s Spitfire-based “2013” Lotus Se7en, shall we? Lotus—Locost—Lost. That’s pretty much it. And, while the idea of a four-figure Seven replica is intriguing, that car’s execution and questionably reliable Triumph base garnered it a substantial 70-percent Crack Pipe loss. Guess it just wasn’t lo-cost enough.

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The terms low cost and BMW really don’t go together very well. They’re neither peas and carrots, nor chocolate and peanut butter, and god forbid you ever confuse them for conjoined twins.

The fact is, any sort of initially cheap BMW is likely only masquerading as such, and will end up being a huge money suck in the longer term. It’d be sort of like the Clark Kent of cars, only its hidden superpower would be emptying your wallet.

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That’s why, if you’re keen on a particular model from Bayerische Motoren Werke AG, it’s probably a good idea to by the best—and probably most expensive—example you can find.

I’ve found a pretty expensive one, now let’s see how good it comes off.

The seller of this 2002 BMW M Coupe opens his ad by touting its exclusivity:

This is one of 678 BMW Z3 M Coupes produced with an S54 engine, one of 340 built in 2002, and one of only 24 S54 M Coupes in Steel Gray with a Dark Gray/Black interior and a sunroof.

I supposed that’s a little like some dude trying to pick up a girl in a bar by telling her that, out of the 20-odd guys there, he’s the only one wearing Spongebob underpants. I mean, there’s a certain point where unique minutia just doesn’t matter, am I right?

Given that however, this is still a pretty sweet looking M Coupe. Well, I mean if you like the looks of a car given the nickname “Clownshoe.”

I’m guessing that many of you do, and that even those not fully on board with the little Bimmer’s unique micro-machine shooting brake style will likely jones over the S54 under its clamshell bonnet.

That 3.2-litre S54B32 six is shared with the E46 M3, and in M Coupe gives it up to the tune of 321-bhp. That’s less than the M3’s 338, but the M Coupe is about 10-percent lighter than the hot 3. The M Coupe also gives up a gear to the concurrent M3, sporting a five-speed Getrag rather than the Three’s six-cog 420G.

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Yes, it may be less attractively kitted than the contemporary M3 but the ad for this particular M Coupe states that the parts is has are in stunning condition.

The car comes in Dark Grey over black and grey Nappa, and with basically no wear nor tear in evidence inside or out. Hell, it’s even annoyingly clean underneath. Geez, looking at the spotless exhaust makes me want to do a better job wiping on the can. Um, you probably didn’t need to read that.

Part of the car’s cleanliness may stem from the dearth of miles it’s covered to date—a meager 39,000 showing on the clock. It’s also mercifully been kept modestly stock, with only a Dinan ECU upgrade, strut tower brace, drilled rotors, and a phat shift knob as deviations from the norm.

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In addition to the normal maintenance, the 2nd-owner seller states that a lot of preventative maintenance has gone into the car as well, fixing things like a drippy compass in the rear-view and rocky seat rails before they became problems. All that and more is apparently provided with the car in the form of maintenance records, along with an old paper edition of Bimmer magazine in which this very car appeared. Fame!

I noted earlier that, when it comes to buying a BMW you’re going to want to buy the best one your budget allows, lest you end up paying for your poor choices later.

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This seems to be one of the—if not the—best S54 M Coupes on the market, and hence it might just prove a safe bet for future enjoyment without making Benjamins disappear like it was the automotive equivalent of Penn and Teller. Of course, that’s going to cost you. The asking price for this one of 678 S54 M Coupes is an eye-watering $59,999. That’s a price so high that you might need oxygen and a Sherpa just to give it regard. Still, we have a job to do.

What do you think about this impressive M Coupe and that $59,999 price? Does that seem fair considering the car’s exclusivity and condition? Or, does that price make you think it’s the seller that’s the clown?

You decide!

Los Angeles Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

Help me out with NPOCP. Click here to send a me a fixed-price tip, and remember to include your Kinja handle.

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