Today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Alpina is a grand cheaper on the dealer site than in its Craigslist ad, proving the value of Sherlockian sleuthing. No matter where it is, it’s wicked cool, but could its flexible price make it even cooler still?
Do you like escargot? When prepared right, they are delicious—garlicky, buttery and rustically decadent. The thing of its is, what they also are is snails, those slimy, crunch things that make you queasy when you accidentally step on one in your barefeet.
In some ways, last Friday’s 1982 Ferrari Mondial 8 was like those escargots. It was a Ferrari after all. And its add-on supercharger would likely have given it performance that would make you forget its age. On the other hand, the Mondial was never all that good looking, and with its long wheelbase necessitated by its 2+2 mid-engine layout, the car’s handling will never live up to to the expectations its Prancing Horse badges imply.
Still, at $39,995, most of you were able to overlook that well-presented car’s inherent shortcomings and awarded it a narrow but decisive 53 percent Nice Price victory. Now let’s all go celebrate with some snails.
Before we do that however, let’s extend our consideration to this 1994 BMW Alpina B3 3.0/1.
Now, we’ve talked previously about Alpina, or more properly, Alpina Burkard Bovensieen GmbH. The company was founded by industrialist Burkard Bovensiepen in 1965, and adopted its name—Alpina—from an earlier Bovensiepen family business manufacturing office machines—typewriters and the like. The company started out as strictly an aftermarket tuner, but graduated to full manufacturer status in 1983.
This B3 3.0/1 is evidence of the extent of Alpina’s re-manufacture of BMW’s basic product. The M50B25 under its hood has been punched out an additional 500ccs to 2997 total, and features Alpina-spec innards. That all offered a nice bump in power from the BMW 2.5’s 197 horsepower to a more M3-challenging 250 ponies from the 3.0. Here, a five-speed Getrag does shifting duties behind the more athletic mill.
Brakes and suspension are pretty much as they were in the source 325i, however Bilstein struts and shocks were upgrade add-ons. Alpina-specific 18-inch wheels and body aero-aids have also been appended, as has a decal package to help the uninitiated know what it is they’re seeing.
This one comes in a very typical Alpina metallic blue with grey/blue graphics. The body looks straight and aside from some noticeable peppering on the nose, to have no major blemishes in that paint. The engine bay shows an engine with Alpina badging, as well as some wear showing on the cam cover. There’s a sticker on the radiator support with sharpie on it indicating either the date of a notable service or a recent visit from the current administration.
The interior shows well, with Alpina cloth upholstery that presents without evident wear and tear, and additional wood trim that also looks to have held up its end of the bargain. Alpina gauge faces and an octane rating warning face the driver. The car comes with just under 140,000 kilometers on the clock.
It should be noted that that clock, er, odometer—as well as the speedo—read in metrics, indicating that this was not originally a U.S. market car. It’s 25 years old however, and as we all know, that means it’s welcome to the party pretty much anywhere in the States other than California.
This B3 is offered by a shop in Kirkland, Washington that also has another, similar Alpina on tap. That car looks to be a little cleaner, and carries fewer miles, but asks $3K more as a result. I don’t know about you, but I’d put up with a little wear if I can save three grand in the process.
That process means this car asks $26,995, and that’s with a clean title and the plaque on the dash noting this is car number 127. Yes, the Craigslist ad offers the car at a grand more than that, but as I noted at the outset, it always pays to dig a little deeper.
What’s your take on this Alpina and that $26,995 asking? Does that sound like a good deal to make this B3 your BFF? Or, is that way out of line for even so rare an Alpina?
H/T to Lin G for the hookup!
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