Missing The Dream Wagon (By That Much)

Three days ago, someone posted a Le Mans blue, six-speed, BMW 328i M-Sport Touring on the BMW CCA Classifieds for $5,900. I’ll save you some time though: it sold.

For wagon aficionados, it was the dream wagon. A spectacular culmination of all things that the E91 3 series Touring could be. It was a one-owner and a 2011, which is compelling enough on its own, but it was also rear wheel drive when most Tourings were xDrive; it was an LCI, meaning “Life Cycle Impulse”, the streamlined, facelifted body that began in 2009; it was Le Mans Blue, a deep color that stands out amongst the seas of Space Gray; it was an M-Sport pack, a final-run option that combined the most aggressive bumpers, wheels, suspension, steering wheel, and interior options with the wagon body style; and of course, it was a six-speed manual. The miles were high, at 172,000, but that didn’t scare away BMW CCA members for what the seller described as an “overwhelming” response—probably because the price was very right, at $5,900.

It is not, however, a one-of-one car, just a brilliantly well-priced  example with enough miles that it could make the perfect daily (without feeling bad for the chassis). The ad in question had no photographs, just a written description, but there happens to be at least one other wagon in similar spec for sale. Oh, look: here it is offered by Enthusiast Auto Group in Cincinnati, Ohio. EAG is hiding the price of this dream wagon publicly (and I don’t blame them—this is an “if you know, you know” car), but I have it on good authority that it has five digits and begins with a three.

I’d make the bold claim that it’s worth that tall figure—which makes the wagon on the classifieds, at 20% of the price, the deal of the decade.

By EAG’s calculations, there are 429 manual, rear-wheel-drive E91s in the US—but very few of them are the well-equipped and expensive M-Sport variants. To wagon people, something like this in the 3 Series chassis is the dream. No doubt, BMW CCA members all around the country quickly began planning how to retrieve the dream wagon on the Classifieds from its previous home in Virginia. In fact, my own effort to retrieve it resulted in a Cannonball-esque plan that involved me and my girlfriend driving the wagon to California for a friend and fellow E91 enthusiast (who, in exchange, would sell me his stake in an old 7 Series we co-own, resulting in another drive back to the East Coast). It’s the stuff of dreams—but so is that wagon.

This brief saga ended much more quietly, as it did for most interested parties. The very polite seller (no doubt the most popular man on the Classifieds for three days) sent me an email back to let me know the car had sold after just two days online. I know it will have gone to a good home, but if there’s a takeaway from this, it’s that even for cars produced in double-digit numbers, you can still find that diamond in the rough listing that just might be perfect.

Search well and search often, because when it does happen, I’m willing to bet it will be on the BMW CCA Classifieds. —David Rose

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