BMW Baur Convertible 1986. AUCTION FINISHED

In the current climate and especially with BMW there was a distinct pattern to the launch of a new model. First, they come out with the saloon, next comes the estate, then the coupe, then a convertible and then we start on the performance version of all of the above.

But in the 1990’s things were slightly different. Back then, there were only two body styles: a coupe, which is what everyone bought. And one of the most bizarre convertibles on the market.

That convertible came courtesy of a Stuttgart-based coachbuilder named Baur, who had a long history with BMW and apparently saw the market for a BMW convertible before BMW did. So the two teamed up to make a convertible 3-Series – with only one little problem. It wasn’t quite a convertible as we all know it.

You see, Baur had to start its convertible 3-Series by taking an already-built 3-Series coupe and effectively sawing off the roof. As a result of this Baur had to engineer this rigidity into the top as there wasn’t any extra rigidity built into the body or the chassis

The result of this was a convertible of … unusual … proportions. But in today’s society this has made it unique and an absolute classic.

The result of all this top engineering is that the Baur E21 isn’t really a convertible – but rather more like BMW’s take on the targa top, which was all the rage back in the ‘70s. But unlike a Porsche 911 Targa, which only had a removable roof panel, a top-down Baur E21 had the roof off and the rear window removed, giving it slightly more of a convertible feel.

This BMW 316i Baur Convertible is a smart example of the E30 generation, which presents in highly original and unmolested condition. For a 35-year-old car, it also boasts very low mileage of 56,000 low mileage and only 2 owners from new. Its reliable reputation would make it an eye-catching modern classic daily driver, and it should also appeal to any BMW collectors.

First registered on 19 March 1986, this elegant executive car is an original UK-market model which left the factory with the Sport kit applied, which included multi-spoke BBS wheels, front and rear spoilers and M Technic side skirts. The vendor has owned the car for just over four years, and the service history is comprehensive to say the least.

Finished in metallic Alpine White, it presents in great condition, with minor marks as you would expect from a 35-year old vehicle. The front end is largely free of stone chips, and the light lenses are in good order.

While the bodywork appears to be straight and solid, please bear in mind this is a 35 year old car, but we have seen the car in the flesh and it’s a fantastic example for it’s age and mileage.

The BMW has managed to retain its original Sport-specific 14-inch BBS alloy wheels. These are in good condition, with no discolouration and no kerbing. The M Technic body trims are all present and correct and give the car a fantastic presence on the road. The tyres are Kumho 175/65/14 and have at least 7mm all round.

The E30’s cabin is an attractive blend of driver-focused conveniences and a sporting aesthetic. The grey cloth upholstered seats are in excellent order, with no frayed stitching or bolster damage present. 

As a high-specification BMW 316i Baur Convertible, this example features an on-board trip computer in the dashboard, which is in working order.

The E30 was last serviced in August 2019 at 49,506 miles. This was a standard service, with the engine oil and oil filter replaced and new tyres fitted at the time. In the last few years we have receipts for new clutch and fly wheel, rear wheel bearings, new exhaust and front and rear shocks replaced at an Independent German car specialist.

The most recent MOT test was on 28th August 2020 at 50,547 miles when it passed with no advisories. The car comes with its original handbook and wallet, as well as the original BMW boot-mounted tool kit. In addition, a folder of historic service invoices and tax discs will be supplied.

Combining a timeless design with a strong engine and solid maintenance history, this E30-generation BMW 316i Baur Convertible would make for an interesting daily driver, or a fun weekend toy, and should prove to be a good value modern classic.

The description of this auction lot is, to the best of the seller's knowledge, accurate and not misleading. Zoo Auctions completes all of the details about the lot from the seller and performs a level of due diligence through HPI checks and MOT history where available. However, it is the bidder’s responsibility to satisfy themselves as to the accuracy of the description and complete any checks they feel is necessary before bidding on an auction. Please see our Terms and Conditions for full details.

All vehicles are checked through an online HPI check. This vehicle shows no insurance database markers for damage or theft and has no finance owing.