Saturday 25 January 2014

E39 + E21 sold... Enter the E60 - Planet5 lives on!

Managed to shift the E21 last weekend for practically what I'd spent on it, so it's nice to get money back for hard work. It's also given me a wad to spend on my next Beemer and I have fancied an E60 5-series for a while now, so when a lad at work offered a grand for the E39 I decided to have a look for a newer 530d. On a good day on eBay I reckon the E39 could fetch about £1,200, so letting it go for a quick sale at £1k is fair does. I met him today and we did a nice, quick deal. There was no real reason to let the E39 go, everything still works and it has never really let me down, service costs have been next to nothing, but I have had it just over 3 years now and the only justification I can give to upgrading is pure E-number snobbery.

The 530d that I've found this week is a 2004 E60 on a 53 plate, so one of the earlier ones, but still benefitting from the full HID lights and facelift. As with its predecessor, it's an SE with a full BMW service history and 120k miles. It's also mint, but this time it's got full black leather and a silver M-sport interior, as well as a few other sporty bits. I had hankered after the full M-sport car, but they are still commanding 6k+ and I got this for a song, so I guess I can buy and fit M-sport bumpers at a later date, as I said I would with the E39, but probably won't get around to once I've settled into it, even though a guy in Warrington says I can have a purple front M-bumper for £100 if I collect, so just maybe. It does have upgrade wheels, but rather than M-sports it has the 18" (I think, maybe even 19s I forgot to ask) wheels from a 7-series, which look rather nice and a bit different.

I am off to collect it tomorrow, from the east-coast of Essex no less. I managed to get the train ticket booked in advance for just £36, that's all the way from Liverpool Lime Street to Euston, the tube to Liverpool Street and then a regional SE train to Manningtree on the Essex coast, which is a ridiculous discount. The car is already paid for via instant bank-transfer, the first time I've done that buying a car, so when the guy meets me at the train station all I need to do is sign the log book and I'm away, plus I won't need to carry any cash with me. That's if he meets me at the station at all that is, but they're a reputable seller and I received a receipt of purchase on Friday, so it seems all legit so far. The only down side to my cheap train fare is that it won't be a super-quick Virgin train to London and will take over 3 hours instead. The departure time is also 8am, but at least this gets me into Essex for half one in the afternoon and that gives plenty of time to do the 270 mile drive home, which I'm sure will fly by.

Sunday 19 January 2014

E21 316: Car sold...

Met up with Jake yesterday and did the deal. He was getting the train down on his own from Newcastle, so asked if we could meet him in Manchester with it to halve his train fare, which was fair does, it's only about 40 miles from us and was a good chance to see if the car was up for the Newcastle run before handing it over... 

Obviously it was and once I'd hit the M56 I was whipping past cars in the middle-lane with my Dad struggling to keep up in his Audi. Apart from getting a bit warm in the cabin, the engine was ticking along beautifully at about 3,400 revs @ 70mph and I did manage a few stints at 80mph @ around 4,000 rpm, but my right foot was quickly subdued at the sight of a steaming Volvo Amazon on the hard-shoulder - the stranded owner grimaced at me as the Bavarian stalwart roared past, but as we got into Manchester the car was just as sedate in the long traffic-light queues and turning a lot of heads! 

After such a charming run into the city-centre, public-transport showed its true colours and there was bedlam with the Trans-Pennine trains and Jake's arrival was delayed by about 40 minutes. After that the switchover went nice and smoothly, the car speaks for itself and I knew he was keen anyway,so we were back on the road home again in about half an hour with no haggling. I threw in the original 13" steel-wheels, the beige rear seats, the short SPAX springs and a few other bits and bobs including the black rear grille-panel. Jake is only 20 and has had a couple of slammed Mk1 Golfs, so he's well into the scene and I can tell the E21 has gone to the right place, where it will be equally coveted and, hopefully, seen out a bit more.

Of all my car projects, this one was by far the most popular. Bye bye little E21, you will be missed.

Last ever fill up. Took it into work up the motorway for a pre-run check and it was flying.  I threw the 16s on for the trip to Manchester and was expecting a bit of steering-wheel wobble with them not being balanced, but above 50mph the wheel became eerily calm and gave the best high-speed ride so far, even with those stretched tyres.
The highest speed (and most fuel in the tank!) since the day I brought it home from Surrey :)
Parked up in Picadilly station car park, where it drew quite a bit of attention. There were 2 parking-attenants in the place and both were suddenly drawn to it like a magnet, which was unnerving at first.
Timeless lines. Probably the only E21 out in the city that day and getting a lot of love from the Mancs.
The E21 shape just has to have deep-dish wheels - it's well worth the effort to get 9Js on the back.
Coombs of Guildford, endorsed by the Queen no less. Old Beemers famously outlive their dealerships, but I'm pleased to see Coombs is now Vines of Guildford, still a BMW specialist.
In the immortal words of Andy L. - "I do love a sticker". 

Saturday 18 January 2014

E21 316: Last week with the E21...

Quite a sad time this week as the car is now confirmed sold, but it's nice to see it will be going to an enthusiastic new owner, a lad called Jake from Newcastle ways. Quite ironic that the car doesn't leave leafy Surrey for 29 years, then in the subsequent two makes it's way through Liverpool (230 miles away) and then as far North as it practically can to 'Castle (another 175 miles)!

It will be very dearly missed, the handsome E21, not just for the sentimental reasons of it being the exact same age as me or the extent of work and restoration I carried out, but mainly because it is such an awesome car to behold. Time waits for no man and it would be even worse to see me SORN it, hide it away somewhere and let it fade away... it needs to be kept on the road so it can be enjoyed by both the driver and the public. Like any BMW old or new, the thing just loves to be driven and gets better and more rewarding the more you do. It's also great that other people like the shark-nose classic (and in some cases, rare but gratifying, actually get the stance scene :D) and appreciate the work that's gone into the project.

E21 Dub Club has had over 12,000 hits and a heap of good feedback and I would like to thank everyone who has checked it out, not just those who gave props props on the motor, but for those who found it useful and have been helped or inspired with their own E21s... hats off to you. Finally, a big shout out to Clint Warburton for his support - hope with all the space of the Ozzy outback you get to keep your E21 for the foreseeable future.

Never the less, a new project beckons, but sadly it's a bricks-and-mortar style project this time. That time has come again for me to flee the parents nest and give up my natty cars, though I'm sure another retro BMW will appear when the dust settles from this house!

Back in the car gallery at West Wal, where it's not been enough this winter....
Turning heads in Co-Op car park, Wallasey...
Built, not bought. Driven, not garaged. And simply stunning to boot,, even rocking the 15" Melber wheels...

Checking out the bad boy evil Angel Eyes in the tailgate of this Mini. The poor girl must have wondered what I was doing taking photos... obviously she hadn't seen the eyes approaching and got out of the way - it was flying in the cold air!

Saturday 11 January 2014

E21 316: Flared wheel-arches painted.

I have a buyer organised for the car, coming to pick it up next weekend. Just throwing up some recent pics of the painted wheel arches.