Every year, some of the most collectible and noteworthy cars are brought to Monterey, California, where they face they the ultimate test of valuation: crossing the auction block. This year’s edition of Monterey Car Week and its accompanying auctions marked the return of festivities after 2020, and brought with it an interesting array of compelling cars from across the automotive landscape of origin and era. In total, although there were fewer cars brought to market, the total value of sales during the 2021 Monterey Car Week exceeded that of 2019, sell-through rates were high, and multiple auction houses set new records. Check out some of our favorite BMWs sold during Monterey Car Week 2021—and why they piqued our attention—below.
1967 BMW 2000C
Although the BMW E9 coupes seem to get all of the attention, the 2800CS, later 3.0CS, and their subsequent variants all trace their roots back to the Neue Klasse coupes upon which they are based. These include the BMW 2000C and 2000CS, which were introduced in 1965 after the Bertone-designed and V8-powered 3200CS ceased production. The large, vertically-oriented kidney grilles are reminiscent of some of BMW’s prewar designs, and are what the current 4 Series, M3, and M4 can trace their styling back to. Finished in Chamonix White, the 2000C in question is from the model’s final year—1967. More than 50 years after production of the BMW Neue Klasse coupes ended, the 2000C is the rarer of the two, and this automatic example sold for $29,700 when it was auctioned by Mecum in Monterey.
1967 BMW 2000CS
The BMW 2000CS is the more desirable of the Neue Klasse coupes, because it uses twin carburetors to allow for output of 120 horsepower from the M10 four-cylinder compared with the 2000C’s 100. The 2000CS was also only available with a four-speed manual transmission, while the 2000C could be had with an optional three-speed automatic, like the preceding example. Sold from the same collection and finished in the same Chamonix White, this 2000CS is also from the final model year, but was the subject of a $40,000 refurbishment effort in 2017 according to a 2018 Bring a Trailer auction listing, which included rebuilding the brakes and suspension, retrimming the interior, refreshing the instrumentation, and more. Fitted with a period blue and yellow California license plate, this 2000CS sold for $36,300 when it was auctioned in Monterey by Mecum, $300 more than what it fetched when it sold on Bring a Trailer in 2018.
1973 BMW 3.0CS
The BMW E9 coupe is still considered visually stunning by automotive enthusiasts from a variety of interests, backgrounds, and age groups. With a design that remains captivating more than 50 years after its introduction, more than a few have been claimed by rust, which makes the remaining survivors all the more desirable and valuable. The example here sold for $201,600 when auctioned by RM Sotheby’s in Monterey, substantially more than Hagerty’s valuation for the model, which tops out at $137,000 for a concours-condition example, or $60,200 on average. The reason why is simple: this BMW 3.0CS has given up its original M30 inline-six engine for an S38B38 M inline-six from a European market E34 M5. The engine is backed by a five-speed manual transmission installed by La Jolla Independent BMW Service, and sends power to a limited-slip differential sourced from an E30 M3. The S38 engine was built using special connecting rods and pistons, and is said to develop more than 400 horsepower. Other items of note include a reupholstered interior, window regulators from a modern BMW, a CSL steering wheel, Alpina-style alloy wheels, custom coil springs, and invoices totaling more then $20,000.
2001 BMW Z8
Thanks to handmade construction and production that totaled 5,703 units, any BMW Z8 is special, but it’s the paint colors and interior upholstery that sets them apart. This 2001 BMW Z8 is one of 291 finished in red, which is the rarest Z8 color aside from Stratus Gray. The Créma leather interior, however, elevates things to another level, making it one of just 62 trimmed in the color combination.
Exported from New Jersey to France when new, this Z8 returned to the U.S. in 2003, and is accompanied by its windscreen, owner’s manuals and documentation, its hardtop (which is unlikely to fit any other Z8 thanks to their hand-assembled construction), along with its original BMW CPT 8000 TDMA cellular phone, which is said to remain unused in its original box. This Z8 sold for $247,500 when auctioned by Mecum in Monterey, a healthy premium over the $231,000 it changed hands for in 2017 at RM Sotheby’s Amelia Island auction (and substantially more than Hagerty’s average value for the model, which is $155,000). It did not, however, exceed Hagerty’s Condition One valuation of $260,000, which has been on the rise over the past few years.
2003 Alpina V8 Roadster
Thanks to production which totaled just 555 units (initially planned as 333 units), Alpina V8 Roadsters don’t come up for sale particularly often. They’re also rather peculiar in terms of equipment, eschewing the Z8’s S62 M V8 for an Alpina-massaged 4.8-liter version of BMW’s M62 V8, and using a five-speed automatic Steptronic transmission instead of a six-speed manual. Nevertheless, equipment and performance that are more oriented toward comfort and grand touring haven’t seemed to have hurt the Alpina V8 Roadster’s valuation and desirability. Only 29 have been auctioned since 2017, and of those, sixteen have sold for an average price of $236,000, which equates to a sell-through rate of 55%.
The Jet Black example in question was previously the subject of an extensive paint correction and detailing process carried out by Larry Kosilla, during which it was brought back from a neglected state after being parked outside for approximately five years. Despite its previous condition, this Alpina V8 Roadster had covered less than 3,000 miles at the time of its consignment by RM Sotheby’s, and sold for $335,000 in Monterey. That hammer price places it second behind the most expensive Alpina V8 Roadster, which sold for $401,000 in 2018. The sale price is also well above Hagerty’s average valuation for the model of $160,000, and the insurance provider’s Condition One concours valuation of $276,000.—Alex Tock
[Photos courtesy Mecum Auction, Inc., RM Sotheby’s.]