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Purchase Price £5000 

E34 535i se Manual · Delphin Grey · 117k

We are selling this fabulous E34 535i se on behalf of the current owner who has owned the car since the year 2000. He has only decided to sell the car because he is retiring from driving, so this presents an amazing opportunity to acquire a car that has been maintained and cosseted right up to the minute by a meticulous owner.

In my opinion, it is now much harder to find and buy a large engined E34 than it is an equivalent E28, really, yes really. E34’s have been in the line of fire far more so. Lots had their guts ripped out and stuffed into E30’s, and then once that trend passed they took a pounding from the scrappage scheme that culled so many late 80’s and mid 90’s cars, the culmination of which makes SE spec 535i’s in particular, exceedingly thin on the ground. If you are familiar with the American car classification, ‘surviver’, then this is a pretty good example of the definition.

As mentioned above, the car is exceedingly well specced for a manual gearbox equipped car. It is unusual for manuals to be fitted with cruise control or AC but this car has both! At the point of writing this advert the air conditioning is not functioning, but we are confident that after a full service and refresh of the system (week beginning 12/08) it will function beautifully, as does everything else in the interior. The car is equipped with a superbly clean and comfortable grey leather interior which is manually operated but does also include the desirable electrically operated lumbar support. The interior is extremely clean throughout and other than the slightest signs of wear to the driver’s bolster, the interior is in pristine condition with none of the heavy staining that is common with grey interiors. Some repairs have been made to the interior, the common roof lining sag and rear door card separation have been addressed tastefully but not invisibly. Overall the interior is fantastically comfortable and in gleaming condition.

The bodywork has largely original paint that has been well cared for having been waxed and polished to protect it. The bodywork retains a fantastically pleasing depth of shine that brings out the best in the Delphin grey paintwork, enhancing its understated charm and handsome silhouette. Although it has some imperfections that show this car has been used, they are minor and few. The panels are straight, clean and free of rust in all the normal areas. Bottoms of doors, fuel filler flap area, number plate light area and rear arches are all refreshingly rust-free. The story is the same underneath, with spotless jacking points and pristine inner triangles (the area opposite the rear axle carrier mountings).

Drive train: the E34 was the last car to be fitted with Munich’s legendary M30 engine. The final incarnation found here is the M30b35 or ‘world engine’ as it is also known, and they don’t come much sweeter than this one. Overall, I would not hesitate to say that this is the best E34 I have ever driven. It’s tight, responsive and utterly on point in every way. The engine runs perfectly and pulls like a train in every gear. The gearbox is tight without a hint of any slop and effortlessly easy to use. I think to a great extent this car owes its sense of urgency and vigour to the only non standard element of this car which was added by the previous owner as an upgrade, a 3:15 ratio limited slip differential from a BMW E32 750i. It certainly does make it pick up its feet when required. The car has benefited from the meticulous and preventative nature of the care and servicing bestowed upon it by its long term owner, who, being an engineer, no doubt appreciated the finer aspects of these motor cars. The result is a 30 year old car that drives like its just been collected from its pre inspection at the main dealer in ‘89.

As anyone who has owned or driven an E34 for an extended period of time will tell you, they are real drivers’ cars and a worthy proponent of BMW’s ultimate driving machine slogan. This car in particular encapsulates the message perfectly. This is not a perfect vehicle but it is extremely good, and based on their scarcity, as good as is likely to be found. It has a full service history comprising of the original service schedule, receipts for work undertaken and a full complement of old MOT’s to back up its modest mileage. We have been right through the car and with nothing to be found, we have simply completed a service and so it is ready for its new owner to enjoy. It is a fantastic driver’s car: engaging, well balanced and mechanically faultless. It is extremely presentable inside and out and is a credit to its current owner, who in my opinion, is now stoically putting the car first, by allowing us to find it a new owner to whom it can be a faithful servant, as it has been to him.