If your idea of luxury means being swaddled in leather then today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe L7 will certainly fit the bill. That’s because its interior is nothing but leather, but will that mean its price is just the right number of bills?
Do you know what ‘80s band name best describes yesterday’s 1988 Nissan 200SX? That’s right, Survivor!,That’s because not only did it survive to this day in seemingly all-original condition, but it also survived our scrutiny, winning a 76% Nice Price win for its four-grand price. Eye of the Tiger, people.
Speaking of eyes, some of you threw some serious shade at yesterday’s Nissan for its automatic transmission, an obvious betrayal of its sport coupe roots. Of course that is a feature bred from the desire for convenience, status, and luxury, and not plebeian manual labor.
That role makes the automatic transmission in today’s 1986 BMW L7 completely appropriate, as this was the Bavarian brand’s most over-the-top luxury ride of the era. The L7 shared dealer floor space with the similarly high-zoot 6-series based L6, but that one had two fewer doors, and hence less opulence.
The E23 L7 itself was based on the 735i and shared that car’s 3,430-cc M30 mill. That makes the L7 a luxury accommodation for all 182 ponies the engine produces. The automatic transmission we were discussing is in fact a ZF four-speed. This was all pretty standard 7-series stuff at the time, and nothing that would have raised so much as an eyebrow in places like the Hamptons.
While the L7’s mechanicals may not have elevated it over its lessors, its interior accouterments certainly did. The standard E23 is a pretty nicely kitted car, but the L7 turns that up to 11… er, 7. The cars were outfitted with just about every single convenience and luxury option available at the time. That means power everything, automatic climate control, and interestingly, BMW’s first driver’s side airbag.
On top of that, every conceivable surface in the interior was then covered in supple - and in this car’s case, dove grey - dead cow skin. How many cows gave it up to turn the E23 into BMW’s ode to bovine rind? I don’t know but there must be a whole herd of them in there, at least five gimps-in-a-box worth.
Wrapped around that is the elegant Paul Bracq-designed four door bodywork, and in this car’s case that all looks to be in excellent shape. The Diamond Schwarts (doesn’t that sound like a euphemism for a painfully hard poop?) paint looks flaw-free and the brightwork comes across as, well, unerringly bright. I think the Hartage wheels are kind of a love ‘em or leave ‘em addition, but to each his - or her - own.
Mileage is a remarkably low 82,000 and it’s equally remarkable that the ODO in this nearly 30-year old Bimmer is still working. The ad makes the claim that it has been pampered its entire life, which may be the reason. The only major update noted is a new A/C compressor, although there’s no word on if it’s still running R12 or not.
Regardless of what it’s running there’s no argument that this is a very cool - and pretty swank -car. The question for you however is whether or not it’s $15,000 cool and swank. What’s your take on this ‘80s luxury Bimmer, does it seem worth $15,000? Or, is that a luxury you wouldn’t afford?
Help me out with NPOCP. Click here to send a me a fixed-price tip, and remember to include your Kinja handle.