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1972 BMW 3.0 CSi 'Wide Body' Coupé
Registration no. JYN 78K
Chassis no. 2230313
Engine no. 1270006

BMW returned to six-cylinder power for its top-of-the-range models in 1968 with the launch of the 2500 and 2800 saloons together with the stylish 2800CS coupé. Designated 'E9', the latter was powered by the 2800 saloon's M30 engine, though its running gear had more in common with the existing, four-cylinder 2000C/CS. The 2800CS's replacement by the similarly styled 3.0-litre CS in 1971 brought with it numerous improvements, including four-wheel disc brakes in place of the old disc/drum combination. With 180bhp on tap courtesy of its larger engine, the 3.0CS was good for in excess of 130mph, with even more performance on offer from the 3.0 CSi. The latter's Bosch D-Jetronic fuel-injected engine produced 200bhp, only a whisker below the maximum enjoyed by the lightweight CSL Group 2 'homologation special', affectionately known as the 'Batmobile' on account of its futuristic body kit.

Developed at Stuttgart University and used from mid-1973 onwards, the so-called 'Batmobile' aerodynamic package consisted of a front chin spoiler, large rear wing and various other devices. Illegal for road use in Germany, the wings were left in the boot for final installation after purchase. Thus equipped the Batmobiles were able to defeat the previously all-conquering Ford Capri RS2600s, Toine Hezemans capturing the 1973 European Touring Car Championship for BMW at the wheel of a 3.0 CSL and co-driving one to a class win at Le Mans that year with Dieter Quester. Ford bounced back in 1974 but from 1975 onwards the BMW 'Batmobiles' won five consecutive European Touring Car Championships, a quite unprecedented run of success. Today these exciting and charismatic Grand Tourers enjoy an enthusiastic following and well-preserved examples are increasingly sought after.

This stunning, right-hand drive 3.0 CSi has been converted by the German firm of Alpina. Founded by Burkard Bovensiepen, Alpina began producing tuned versions of BMW models in the 1960s, before the Bavarian company's own Motorsport Department launched its now famous 'M' range. A close collaborator with BMW from its earliest days, Alpina enjoys motor manufacturer status in Germany and can take much of the credit for establishing BMW's high performance image thanks to a succession of sensational road cars and countless race-track victories.

It is not known when this car was converted, though the history file contains a photograph, taken in the late 1970s, showing it in its present configuration at that time. Modifications include a 3.5-litre engine equipped with triple Weber 45 carburettors; five-speed dog-leg manual gearbox; custom-made stainless steel straight-through exhaust system; twin boot-mounted fuel fillers; 12" wide front/14" wide rear wheels; and, of course, the Alpina aluminium 'wide body' kit and aerodynamic enhancements. In addition, the interior features heated electric front bucket seats, trimmed in blue leather to match the rest of the refurbished cabin.'JYN 78K' benefits from a 'ground upwards' three-year restoration, completed in 2014, and is described as in generally very good condition.

Works carried out included re-commissioning the engine, fitting a new clutch, and a bare-metal re-spray in BMW's striped racing livery. Currently taxed and MoT'd, the car is offered with sundry restoration invoices and V5 registration document. A 'Batmobile' at a fraction of the price of an original example.

Bonhams 1793
101 New Bond Street
United Kingdom
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Bonhams Collectors’ Car department