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Classic Auto Insurance – Not Your Ordinary Collector Car Insurance Company
BMW is known as the “Ultimate Driving Machine,” so why would you insure it with just any ordinary car insurance company? You need the kind of complete auto insurance a BMW beauty deserves. That’s what Classic Auto delivers.
BMW – A Symbol of Luxury and Style
Your BMW is a source of pride and a symbol of your success and style. Classic Auto Insurance shares the passion BMW owners have for their cars and we understand that you need insurance that’s as unique as your vehicle.
No “One Size Fits All” Policies Here
A BMW is a standout that fits its owner like a glove. We understand that at Classic Auto Insurance and can help you find the perfect policy. With our customizable BMW Car Insurance plans tailored to each customer and their vehicle, there are no “one size fits all” policies at Classic Auto Insurance.
At Classic Auto Insurance we offer you Agreed Value coverage on your BMW. Unlike other insurance companies who want to tell you what your car is worth, we will work with you to determine the real value of your car and write a policy based on that price. So if life throws you a curveball and your BMW is totaled in a covered loss, you will receive the exact agreed-upon value on your policy minus your deductible.
Classic Auto Insurance – Offering Peace of Mind at Affordable Rates
In addition to Agreed Value, our “Inflation Guard” provides an automatic increase in Vehicle Coverage every quarter, throughout the policy term, so you don’t have to worry your BMW may be underinsured. This is just another way we offer peace of mind to Classic Auto customers.
Flexible Plans and Rollover Miles Keep You Rolling Along
Choose from one of our three mileage plans -1,000, 3,000, or 6,000 miles- to tailor your Aston Martin insurance policy to your needs. For example, say you plan to attend a number of car shows this year but only manage to make it to one. No problem. Classic Auto Insurance offers rollover miles from one year’s policy to the next. We understand plans change and we don’t feel you should lose miles just because you didn’t use them.
Roadside Assistance – Only a Call Away
The BMW is built for performance but an occasional breakdown is hard to avoid. Never fear! Your Classic Auto Insurance policy includes nationwide BMW roadside assistance with guaranteed flatbed towing. We are just a call away.
The Ultimate Luxury of BMW
This curvaceous roadster looks surprisingly unlike other vehicles produced by BMW. It was developed in the 1990s under the codename E52 as a way of maintaining the secrecy and mystique of the line. After a 1997 concept launch at the Tokyo Motor Show and prototype testing until 1999, the Z8 finally launched in the year 2000.
Its design echoes the BMW 507 from the mid-to-late-50s, which may be why it was selected as James Bond’s car in the 1999 movie The World is Not Enough. In its initial release, it came in soft-top form only with a sleek, pared-down interior and all-aluminum knobs and switches that made it feel like a classic racer.
The Z8 zips down the road with an all-aluminum body and chassis that keeps it light and maneuverable. It feels like a race car but is designed to be road-driven. Although it was designed to give off a retro vibe, BMW also gave it a more modern 4.9-liter S62 V-8 engine with 375 hp.
With the launch of this car, BMW was competing head-on with expensive, easy-riding luxury cars like the Aston Martin DB7 and the Ferrari 360 Modena. In this respect, it was not a resounding success because it didn’t offer any clear advantage over other luxury vehicles. Critics called it “everything, but also nothing.”
Just over 5,700 of these cars rolled off the production line, making them relatively rare to find today. If you ever buy one, make sure you check on the known problems with these cars like valve leaks, brittle interior and exterior plastic, failing cam sensors, and warped components in the aluminum chassis.
When the BMW8 series launched in 1989, it was the culmination of extensive prototype testing that had been happening at BMW since the late 1970s. It came on the heels of the successful 6 series, which had strong sales from 1976 to 1989 and was much-beloved among BMW buyers.
To BMW’s relief, the first car of the 8 series was also an instant hit with luxury car buyers and attracted fans from competitor brands like Ferrari and Porsche. In fact, the car was so popular its first run quickly sold out and left the marketplace waiting expectantly for more.
The 850CSi was a souped-up version of the 8 series that had even more power and speed than the other cars in the series. Although it’s not labeled “M,” it’s considered a motorsports car in the BMW M-car tradition. Introduced in 1992, it packed high horsepower for the era with 375 hp and 406 lb/ft of torque from a 5.6-liter V-12 engine. It also had a six-speed manual transmission with tight steering that allowed it to whip through turns quickly despite its relatively stiff suspension.
With the capacity to do zero to 60 in 5 seconds and a top speed of 180 sans limiter, this car feels like a true speed car among BMW’s more sophisticated road riders. Of course, with the factory limiter, it tops out at 155 and shifts with optimum smoothness. Either way, it has the sleek-meets-tight look of the early 90s that BMW fans of the era couldn’t buy fast enough.
BMW M Coupe
This might be one of the most divisive cars in BMW’s history, with fans viewing it as a cool collector’s classic and skeptics calling it a clown car. The “clown” jab comes from the M Coupe’s odd, front-forward, rounded shape with a long nose and stubby rear. Add the color red, and there’sno denying it looks quite a bit like a clown shoe.
Maybe it’s just the right kind of ugly. It holds strong value in the collectible car market and today, a new generation of collectors finds it fun, quirky, and turn-of-the-century endearing. You’ll probably have to pay $20,000 for even a poorly-preserved M Coupe and at least $75,000 for a pristine example in a Sotheby’s auction.
The BMW M Coupe is one of the rare cars that was produced during two separate production periods, from 1998 to 2002 and again briefly between 2006 and 2008. Because its designers faced difficulty getting BMW’s board to approve the M class in the first place, they agreed to share many parts of its design with the M Roadster, ultimately creating two cars that resemble one another.
The M Coupe has a rear-wheel drive with a 5-speed manual transmission and a 3.2-liter I-6 engine with 316 hp and a top speed of 155 mph. But most people don’t buy it to crank it up to top speed. They buy because they want to own a BMW with personality – a unique and charming character produced by a pedigreed luxury brand.
BMW E30 M3
The E30 M3 is a legend among legends, a classic BMW that’s probably what many people think of when they think of BMW. Its production has crossed five generations and along the way, has solidified the reputation of BMW as a major player in both auto racing and the luxury car marketplace.
It was BMW’s first M3 and was produced from 1986 to 1991 as an “M” class motorsports car that could still give a smooth, comfortable road ride. BMW gave it a 4-cylinder engine – not even a 6-cylinder or turbocharger – with a unique high-powered design that allowed a maximum output of 200 to 238 hp, with a top-of-the-line ABS including ventilated discs.
Try to count the number of racing wins this fast, light super sports car holds, and you’ll reach well into the thousands. The E30 M3 is essentially the street version of the world’s all-time most successful DTM race car and incorporates genuine racing technology under the hood. Put the road version next to the racing version, and it will be hard to tell them apart from a distance because they are almost identical to the untrained eye.
That’s why it’s interesting to consider that without its iconic spoiler, the E30 M3 would look a whole lot like any other boxy BMW on the road. Maybe that’s one reason it maintains such a high position of love among BMW enthusiasts: it’s sporty and classic.
The E30 M3 was produced in only two original colors: Brilliant Red and Glossy Black, which along with silver are two of BMW’s all-time best-selling colors. However, there were some later special editions that came in sparkling tones of blue metallic, silver metallic, and diamond black metallic with a sparkling diamond-like sheen.
BMW 3.0 CS
Looking for a collectible, classic BMW that’s comfortable for a weekend cruise? Consider the 3.0 CS, which has a classic European-style body and high-powered engine that proved to be quite successful in the European Touring Car Championship. Its line was produced during the early 70s, delivering an instant classic that’s still fun to drive and fun to look at.
The BMW 3.0 CS arrived in 1971 to launch a new era for BMW coupes. An early road tester from Autocar described it as a quiet and comfortable car that should make BMW’s competitors take notice. He raved, “It scores over some of its competitors in being more compact and practical as a town car, while still very fast and manageable as a main road express. We thoroughly enjoyed driving it, and its appearance aroused admiration wherever we went in it.”
This sleek little beauty has BMW’s M30 straight-six engine with 180 hp from its 2.8-liters. It hits 60 mph within 7 seconds and can reach a top speed of 137 mph. The 3.0 CS exterior is narrow and low-slung, with a large nose many people find reminiscent of a shark, especially in the line’s common silver-grey color.
This deceptively humble, high-status car drives quietly and doesn’t feel too souped-up for the average driver to enjoy. In fact, this model gained a strong audience among ordinary buyers who weren’t necessarily sports car enthusiasts, which is likely due to its deft blend of everyday usability and luxury credibility.
BMW 3.0 CSL
The letters in the BMW 3.0 CS and CSL might not stand for exactly what you’re thinking. The “L” isn’t for “limited” and the two “Cs” mean two different things. Confusingly, BMW says CS stands for “club sport” and CSL stands for “coupe sport lightweight.”
This car is indeed quite lightweight because BMW outfitted it with some of the world’s most advanced weight-reducing technology of the early 1970s. These improvements brought numerous firsts for BMW that were still new to the world of lightweight racing.
Its clever weight-limiting design included aluminum doors and lids, a magnesium housing around the 5-speed gearbox, and even minimalized knobs and controls within the cockpit. The overall weight of this car at the production point was a sleek 2,408 pounds, significantly lighter than many comparable cars at the time.
It was also the first BMW with a 4-valve 6-cylinder inline engine that would later become standard on subsequent lightweight racing BMWs. To combat its ability to skip along at a breakneck pace, BMW gave it an early anti-lock braking system that allowed it to stop almost instantly even when traveling at top speed.
BMW introduced it as both a street and racing-prepared model. This meant speed addicts could buy 800 hp while everyday BMW road drivers could go with something a little less powerful and a bit less expensive.
The 3.0 CSL invited a new generation of racecar-loving drivers to join the mystique of BMW, and the strategy worked well. It may be one of the company’s closest cars to its motto of, “The Ultimate Driving Machine.” Motorsports magazine summed up this vehicle in four words: “All hail the Batmobile.”
BMW 2002 Turbo
If you had to choose the naughtiest BMW, the bold, boxy, gas-guzzling 2002 Turbo would be an excellent choice. It was a smaller and less expensive addition to the BMW brand, but it was also an emissions nightmare that faced challenges with exportation into some countries.
Picture the state of the world. It was 1974 and the oil supply was being choked by a few of the planet’s most powerful producers. The U.S. had recently imposed a 55-mph speed limit amid skyrocketing oil prices. And here came the BMW 2002 Turbo, thumbing its finely-crafted nose at the global oil crisis.
But BMW didn’t seem to mind and simply increased the size of the gas tank by 52% to maintain the right fuel balance. BMW was focused on staying alive and it needed this car to succeed with the buying public. This was the company’s second motorsports-but-roadworthy car and it helped keep the company solvent during a difficult financial time.
On the outside, the 2002 Turbo looks almost prim and proper, as if a professor might pop out of the driver’s seat. It has a box-shaped body with edge-highlighting trim details that make it look unlike any other car, BMW or not.
Under the hood, it has a fairly powerful M10 4-cylinder engine with 170 hp using a KK&K German-engineered specialty turbocharger. Even the base model has a single carburetor creating 101 hp and the dual-carburetor high compression creates 119 hp. It might be the opposite of “green,” but there’s no denying it’s a symbol of BMW bravado.
It’s small. It’s earth-friendly. It’s kinda cute. It’s one of the most beloved BMWs of all time. The BMW Isetta is the little one-cylinder bubble car that was the world’s first microcar before the modern version of the term even existed.
BMW introduced it in 1955 and blew the world’s collective mind by announcing a fuel efficiency of 78 miles per gallon. Even today, the average fuel efficiency is about 25 miles per gallon, showing how far ahead of its time the Isetta truly was. Plus, it was just 7.5 feet by 4.5 feet and ultra-lightweight, making it easy to transport for exporting to foreign markets.
The Isetta used Italian engineering from Iso, a company that was at the time perhaps best known for its mini-refrigerators and scooters. Isetta literally means “little Iso,” showing the company’s dedication to developing a tiny car to honor its own name using the best Italian micro-technology.
BMW and Iso gave it a 236 cc 7.1 kW 2-stroke internal combustion engine with a 4+R speed chain drive transmission. As you can imagine, an Isetta has a tight turning radius with a bumpy ride due to pared-down, lightweight, barely-there shocks and struts. Just for fun, the Isetta came in a variety of pale sherbet colors like light pink and baby blue.
The Isetta wasn’t just about producing a fun, planet-pleasing car. It was also BMW’s way of meeting a worldwide need for inexpensive cars that could be produced fast and shipped at a low cost. BMW was on the brink of bankruptcy when the Isetta was born, and this tiny miracle helped save the company from going under at a crucial point in its history.
It’s not a Lamborghini, but it’s close. The BMW M1 was produced in partnership with rival Lamborghini and looks more like a lambo than a bimmer. When it was introduced in 1978, some BMW devotees viewed it as a bastardization of the brand and others couldn’t wait to get their hands on one.
The M1 is unquestionably the result of Italian engineering with its space frame chassis and wedge-shaped fiberglass body. But BMW gave it their own 274-hp, 3.5-liter, straight-six engine and 5-speed manual gearbox. Unfortunately, the Lamborghini company went nearly bankrupt during the prototyping of the M1 and as the design process continued, BMW had to contract with a mix of German and Italian companies to complete the car for production.
When it finally rolled off the production line, it represented numerous firsts for BMW. It was their first international collaboration at such a large scale and at a point of such dire financial risk. It was also the first mid-engined BMW automobile to be mass-produced for the domestic and international marketplace.
And, of course, it was the first BMW to generate such a high level of controversy that even to this day, some people don’t even consider it a BMW. Several prominent names connected to BMW saw their careers tank as a result of this car’s introduction, including Jochen Neerpasch, the man behind BMW’s racing prestige.
But let’s not allow the naysayers to taint the glory of the M1. Car and Driver calls it a monument to automotive excellence that shows what a group of the world’s best engineering geniuses can do together – regardless of where they’re employed.
BMW 3200 CS
The BMW 3200 CS was introduced in 1962 and was produced until the fall of 1965. Only about 500 were ever built, so good luck getting your hands on one of these classic BMWs today. They’re the last gasp of a postwar luxury line that BMW later replaced with more tech-heavy and cost-saving vehicles in the 1970s.
The timeless body style of the 3200 CS was based on the 501 and was later revived in the BMW 2000 CS coupe. This was the first appearance of the famous Hofmeister kink that would become one of the company’s iconic looks. The Hofmeister kink is a forward-bending design flair found in the back of the back windows in the C or D pillar of the vehicle. It’s named in honor of Wilhelm Hofmeister, BMW’s design chief spanning the mid-1950s to 1970.
BMW gave this clean, modern vehicle a light-alloy V8 engine with a full synchromesh transmission and a top speed of 124 mph. It offered a lumbering 16 miles per gallon just before the global oil crisis created a strong demand for fuel-efficient vehicles.
On the inside, this car absolutely oozes luxury. Sliding inside is like easing your way into a leather-clad wingback chair in a 50s-era millionaire’s study. It’s a shame that it represents the end of an era for BMW. This car embodies many “lasts” for BMW. It was the last of their cars to have pushrod-operated engine valves, a perimeter frame, or a solid rear axle.
Meet the car that nearly put its automaker out of business: The BMW 503. The 503 and its sister car, the 507, came close to sending BMW into bankruptcy during the 1950s due to unexpectedly high production expenses and internal disagreements over cost-cutting issues.
The big dogs at BMW intended for it to slide into a tight niche in the luxury automotive marketplace. It would be priced above the less-expensive European sports cars, but below Mercedes luxury models that kept the average person mostly out of high-end car buying. However, this plan utterly failed when production costs spiraled out of control.
Design-wise, the 503 is a gorgeous example of the BMW brand. It has graceful, curving body lines with perky little lights and two long, vertical snout-like front vents. Beneath the trapezoid-shaped hood, BMW installed an alloy OHV V8 capable of 3,168 cc and 30 more hp than any of their sedans.
It has twin carburetors, an advanced lubrication system including a chain-driven oil pump, a 4-speed manual transmission powering a live rear axle with torsion bar springs, and a front suspension with double A-arms. Braking comes from drums on all four corners with an option to fit front discs, which was a high-end option at the time.
And don’t forget that the 503 could zip around at 115 mph, which was breakneck speed in the 1950s – especially for such a laid-back luxurious car. Still, none of this was enough for the 503 to outshine its souped-up sister car, the 507, or to save BMW from its financial struggles. It wasn’t a huge seller and the company ended its production by 1959, making it a relative rarity for today’s collectors.
BMW 328 Roadster
One of BMW’s early vehicles, the 328 Roadster was only produced for a short time in 1939 and 1940. It didn’t make a huge splash in the marketplace at the time – primarily for economic and political reasons – but almost 60 years later, it was named The Car of the Century by a global panel of automotive journalists.
The 328 Roadster arrived at a complicated time in world history. After World War Two, its German manufacturing plant was occupied by the Soviets and automotive production was directed by the state. Not only was the 328 Roadster under Soviet control, but the entire plant would remain so until 1989.
Back when it was first introduced to the public, it had already scored a track victory in 1938 at the Mille Miglia. And later, when it was no longer available for public sale, versions of the 328 continued to rack up victories at the Australian Grand Prix and other venues.
It’s easy to let history overshadow the design beauty and automotive genius of this car. It was at the pinnacle of innovation at the time, so advanced that the Bristol Aeroplane Company took notice and based some of its own designs on ideas from the 328 Roadster. BMW had powered it with a straight-6 OHV light-alloy cylinder engine and a 4-speed manual transmission. Its light aluminum body was strengthened by a steel ladder frame, keeping it safe and steady on the track.
The production version had a top speed of 93 mph – certainly not fast by today’s standards but impressive at the time. When it needed to stop, it used 11-inch hydraulic drum brakes and slid to a stop quickly for a late-30s roadster.
Here’s yet another rags-to-riches story for BMW. When the 507 was produced in 1956, it wildly exceeded expense expectations and added to the company’s severe financial struggles. In fact, it almost pushed the company to bankruptcy when executives realized it couldn’t be affordably exported to the United States to recoup the losses they were seeing.
Of course, today we know the rest of the story: It ended production in 1959 at a total of 252 cars and became a collectible car worth millions by 2020. Today, you’d be lucky to ever see one of these beauties in person.
The classic version of the 507 is a bright red convertible with a tidy little black top or a detachable matched-color hard top. The wheels would be painted to match and the whole car would perch front-forward like a little cougar ready to pounce. The 507 had a smaller frame and shorter wheelbase than its close cousin, the 503, giving it a much sportier stance.
It has a 3168 cc M507/1 V8 engine and a 4-speed ZF manual transmission, giving it a top speed of 122 with an ability to hit 62 mph in about 11 seconds. This car also got an unusual fuel storage system that included a large tank behind the seats that significantly limited its trunk space.
This was Munich’s dream car – luxurious, racy, compact, and theoretically inexpensive enough to compete with low-cost MGs and other little wonders of the day. It was said that anyone who laid eyes on it had to have one, yet the factory’s financial problems denied most buyers’ dreams almost from day one. The design was just too perfect for mass production and BMW never figured out how to give it all the right specs on an efficient assembly line.
That didn’t stop famous people from acquiring their own 507, though. Elvis Presley owned one, as did Fred Astaire and actress Ursula Andress, who acquired hers as a gift from Presley when he decided he didn’t need two! Later, British billionaire Bernie Ecclestone paid more than 900,000 for one in 2007, just before similar examples began selling for about $2 million at auctions around the world.