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1972 BMW 3.0 CSi Coupé
Registration no. GEL 92L
Chassis no. 2262705

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 2800 CS 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 2000 C/CS. The 2800 CS'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 3.0 CS 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.

Although designed as a fast and comfortable touring car, the 3.0 CSi in its Batmobile form would turn out to be one of the most successful competition saloons of all time. Developed at Stuttgart University and used from mid-1973 onwards, the Batmobile aerodynamic package enabled BMW to defeat the previously all-conquering Ford Capri RS2600s, commencing with the 1973 European Touring Car Championship. Ford bounced back in 1974 but from 1975 onwards the Batmobiles won five consecutive ETCCs, a quite unprecedented run of success.

Today these exciting and charismatic E9 Grand Tourers enjoy an enthusiastic following and well-preserved examples such as that offered here are increasingly sought after. A rare UK delivered right-hand drive model equipped with the rare Webasto sunroof, 'GEL 29L' has formed part of a 20-car collection since it was purchased by the vendor and restored in 2014. Since then the BMW has been used sparingly over the summer months. The interior is very good indeed, with correct blue cloth seats (so often poorly re-trimmed) while mechanically it is in very good order, benefiting from a recent service by marque experts. All brightwork presents well and the shut lines are good. Accompanying documentation consists of restoration invoices, a current MoT, and a V5C Registration Certificate.

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