- BMW’s Z3 roadster appeared in 1996 as a kind of German-accented Miata.
- The arrival of the six-cylinder engine added enormously to the Z3’s enchantment.
- This Z3 2.8 with simply 28K miles is up for public sale at no reserve.
The roaring success of the Mazda Miata touched off a roadster mania within the Nineteen Nineties, with BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Porsche all fielding attainable (if not fairly Miata-level reasonably priced) two-seaters. BMW’s Z3 arrived in 1996 with a 138-hp 1.9-liter four-cylinder engine below its classically-inspired lengthy hood. It solely took a 12 months for the Z3 to extra totally attain its potential, with the arrival of a 2.8-liter inline-six bringing a further 51 horsepower concurrent with a limited-slip rear differential. Swollen rear fenders, essential to clear a 2.5-inch wider observe, properly balanced the styling.
This crisp-looking instance at present on Carry a Trailer—which, like Automobile and Driver, is a part of Hearst Autos—is powered by that fascinating six, paired, crucially, with BMW’s ultra-slick five-speed handbook.
In an in-period street take a look at, we clocked a ’97 Z3 2.8 at 6.3 seconds to 60 mph, a outcome that is nonetheless credible right now. For 1999, the two.8-liter engine noticed output nudged to 193 horsepower. This 2000 mannequin additionally advantages from different operating adjustments together with the fitment of facet airbags, rollover hoops, and a barely nicer inside. This automobile additionally boasts an influence prime, heated seats, and leather-based trim.
Latest service contains the alternative of the drive belt, a brand new transmission selector seal, and new rear dampers (final 12 months). The plastic rear window for the highest has additionally been changed. Whereas there are just a few minor paint chips and underbody scuffs famous, however the automobile general seems to be in very tidy situation as befits its odometer studying of simply 28,000 miles.
This automobile is situated in Newburgh, New York, and might’t you simply image flying out and driving it dwelling, flogging it down twisty roads with a contrail of foliage behind you? With New York State’s leaves already altering to an autumnal palette of pink and gold, now’s the time to take pleasure in a traditional roadster.
Act quick, nevertheless, as this no-reserve public sale ends October 1.
Brendan McAleer is a contract author and photographer based mostly in North Vancouver, B.C., Canada. He grew up splitting his knuckles on British cars, got here of age within the golden period of Japanese sport-compact efficiency, and commenced writing about vehicles and folks in 2008. His explicit curiosity is the intersection between humanity and equipment, whether or not it’s the racing profession of Walter Cronkite or Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki’s half-century obsession with the Citroën 2CV. He has taught each of his younger daughters learn how to shift a handbook transmission and is grateful for the excuse they supply to be perpetually shopping for Sizzling Wheels.