Traveling in style while going very fast frequently involves something along the lines of Gulfstream G5. Today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe 750iL is a big Bimmer that’s imbued with both a supercharger and a stick, but will the price have you going with its style?
Some people love to own exotic pets—tigers, wolf-dogs, snakes, Kardashians, etc. Other people like to own and enjoy exotic cars. In both cases there’s a significant chance for that prized possession to turn around and bite you on the ass, in the former case literally, and in both cases financially.
That very real threat simply isn’t enough to scare off some folks, and that’s why yesterday’s 1989 Lotus Esprit was found so appealing despite the model’s rep for fragility and wallet emptying upkeep. Its $23,500 price was likewise found desirable, earning a narrow but decisive 53-percent Nice Price win.
When considering today’s 1989 BMW 750iL I think it’s important to note that both it and the titular protagonist from Mary Shelley’s seminal book, Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus are both German.
Why is that an important distinction? Well, take a look at the car, and then page through the Cliff’s Notes for Frankenstein that you saved from high school. In Shelley’s novel, the good Doctor, Victor Frankenstein is discovered near death on the wind-swept ice by the crew of an arctic exploration ship. He then chronicles to that ship’s captain the sordid tale that brought him to this end. It’s an old maxim that ‘clothes make the man,’ but as Victor Frankenstein relates, that’s untrue. It is he who has made a man.
That ‘man’ turns out to be more a monster and ends up shunned and pursued by a frightened populous to the great white north because he is different, and different is scary to most. In the end Frankenstein has unleashed his unholy creation upon the world and the novel ends with the monster’s whereabouts or potential villainy unexplored.
In contrast, today’s big Bimmer is pretty much a mad mashup created by someone unbound, not by the finality of death, but by what the bean counters at BMW allowed. Like Frankenstein’s monster, it too has been imbued with superhuman capabilities. Well, to be pedantic, it has been given a blown V12 and a manual transmission. Both of those are mad scientist level additions, however.
The supercharger is a Vortech V2 and that feeds the 4988-cc M70 V12 through a tightly packaged series of cross-over tubes and hose clamps. It’s a bit of a dog’s breakfast under the hood, but according to the ad it’s been running with the blower since 2012 so it’s not like the mod’s going to majorly crap out now.
Behind the big blown twelve sits a Getrag 6-speed pulled from a 1995 850CSi, and claimed to have been professionally installed. That feeds a factory-installed limited slip diff in the back. The ad notes high flow injectors, updated CPUs, a Dinan E32 suspension kit, and 4-pot Brembo brakes as other updates. The package is supposed to put 400 horses to the rear wheels, and likely a smile on your face.
The body is a little beat up, but seems serviceable for the near term. Aftermarket turbines underpin and the tires are new. The custom front and rear bumper caps look a bit tacky and even the seller says it might be better just to yank them off.
Inside, things look fine until you get to the center stack, which is now way more stackier. A large box has been added above the center air vents and houses a number of ancillary gauges in its rudimentary construction. I’m guessing the builder never heard of A-pillar gauges, but seeing this set up I think somebody should make him aware. There’s 180,000 on the clock and the car comes with a clean title.
What’s wrong with the car? Well, apparently the clutch is a goner. The ad claims that the car starts and runs without issue, but that it’s presently underivable due the clutch having taken a big-ol’ dump. How big a deal is replacing a clutch on a car that has been cobbled together to be a manual? I guess somebody will need to find out. Maybe they could get back to us on that?
The seller realizes the daunting task of selling such an odd property as a wounded mod monster. He attempts to temper the downsides by saying that at his asking price you could part out the car and still come out ahead. He’s also throwing in a box of other mods—you can never eat just one—and says those are worth $550 alone.
He’s asking $6,500 for the car, the parts, and the problems that go along with them. In a somewhat scary but telling admission, he opens his ad by stating that he bought the car just a few weeks ago with the intent of wrenching on it, but now doesn’t have the time to do so. The questions we have to answer is whether it’s worth anyone else’s time, and more importantly, is it worth anyone’s $6,500?
What do you think, does this German monster meet that $6,500 price tag? Or, is that just crazy talk?