Technology moves remarkably fast, and nobody knew this better than late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. That said, his excellent taste in automobiles was decidedly old-fashioned: powerful, two-seat sports cars, usually convertibles, and typically German.
The BMW Z8 he owned briefly at the turn of the 21st century will be offered by RM Sotheby’s at their New York ICONS sale on Wednesday, December 6th.
After a smattering of Porsches and a long line of Mercedes SLs, Jobs was apparently convinced to jump ship by Oracle CEO Larry Ellison. Steve’s love of BMW motorcy
cles certainly played a part, too.
With architecture based on the E39 BMW M5, the Z8 combined classic roadster styling—penned by Henrik Fisker as a tribute to the classic 507—with brutal, modern performance courtesy of an S62 V8. Even today, it’s a respectable performer.
That balance of poise and power was plenty for a smattering of famous owners, both real and fictional, from Steve Jobs to James Bond and Rush drummer Neil Peart, who loved his Z8 enough to write a novel, Traveling Music, centered around driving it.
What hasn’t aged quite as well, however, is the included Motorola flip phone. While both automotive and cell phone technology has improved tremendously in the past fifteen-plus years, we’d expect a lot more enjoyment out of using a Z8 than we would using a contemporary cell phone. Some things are timeless; others fade into their rightful place in history.
This particular Z8 has managed to cover a mere 15,200 miles in its lifetime, and is being offered for sale by its second owner.
Already a valuable car on its own, Jobs’ provenance—and to a lesser degree, the included hardtop—are expected to help this Z8 fetch between $300,000 and $400,000.—Cameron VanDerHorst
[Photos courtesy of Karissa Hosek/RM Sotheby’s.]