Good timing on this submission from the CC Cohort. This superb 3.0CSi (E9) coupe (Update: shot by bobloblaw2010) is the ultimate evolution of the Neue Klasse sedans as profiled in today’s CC. Of course, it picked up some new front sheet metal when it also was graced with BMW’s new six cylinder engines in 1969. That was a facelift in the best sense of the word, as its old face was decidedly lackluster:
Here it is in its original form, as the 1965 2000C/CS coupe. Very Corvair-esque indeed. And not a big seller. The transition to 2800CS in 1968 really turned this ugly duckling into a swan, and not just from a looks point of view.
The new six was the finest of its kind anywhere, and the combination made the e9 one of the most desirable coupes both during its production run from 1969 through 1975, but ever since too. A true modern classic.
The 3.0CS/CSi may be my favorite BMW, ever.
Gorgeous car. I know of a clean one near me, a 69 or 70 maybe, in original turquoise-blue. Owned by some non-gearhead folks who inherited it, so it just sits…car deserves an overhaul, but I bet it wouldn’t be cheap.
They are surprisingly inexpensive in an unrestored state, mainly because they can rust at an Olympic level, and in hard to repair structural areas. Mind you even ‘good’ ones (and CSL’s) are still not that dear for what they are in my mind.
And I must be one of the few who likes the 2000C/CS, if only for its uniqueness.
I was a bit hard on it calling it an “ugly duckling”. I like it too; just in a very different way than the E9. It is unique unique indeed.
Here you go…. looks a nice project.
I like a lot. Those are too old for the smog inspection here in Tx so I really like.
Gorgeous. Always wanted one but good ones are rare due to the aforementioned rust problem. Karmann didn’t do much in terms of corrosion protection, but Porsches of the time weren’t much better.
And it cost more than a 911, too. Which might have been OK had BMW decided to bring over the injected 3.0 CSi. Instead, we got emissions-strangled carburetors that extended 0-60 times to more than ten seconds. Not good for Ferrari Dino money, even then.
So the trick now is to retrofit later fuelie systems or even the 3.5-liter six and 5-speed combo out of a 6-series. Provided you can stay ahead of the rust.
How’s that for timing… I took these pictures while babysitting my 3 yr. old last thursday — only preceding your Newe Klasse entry by a couple of days….
I can kick myself for not having a legitimate camera onhand since my Blackberry phone could not cope well with the glare. The interior, while a bit cluttered with the gentleman’s belongings– was a beautiful tawny brown leather. In short, a wonderful car that I truly envied.
There’s one of these right now on craigslist in Santa Rosa, CA, with the aforementioned 3.5L/5-speed conversion. $15000, “lost title”.
While not a BMW fan, I can appreciate some of their older models, such as the 2002 and the early iterations of the 318i 2 door coupes. Good friends once had a light metallic blue ’76 that he had for years. Don’t know if one of his sons has it or what now that he no longer drives and lives near his daughter in Davis CA.
This 3.0 BMW looks very nice indeed and that front clip is very classic BMW and has a timeless quality to it IMO.
If that color is accurate, it looks to have been painted a grape-y purple and if so, it rocks it mightily.
That color was a decidedly navy blue… my basic BB cam and shadows are playing tricks on your eyes… it was a basic navy blue.
but a brillant car nonetheless.
I’ve always been a fan of huge greenhouses and low belt lines, and these BMW coupes are some of the best examples of that look. Thanks for posting the photos!
I own one of these (check it out at http://khamsin.kodakgallery.com ) and can confirm most of the above.
Unrestored examples are still relatively affordable (under $15K in these parts, at least for the carburetted 2800 CS and 3.0 CS models) but tend to have severe rust issues. The main reasons for that are 1) as pointed out by Paul, these cars are essentially 2000C coupes to which BMW grafted the front end of the new-for-1968 E3 sedans, resulting in a patchwork of overlapping sheet metal between the A pillars and the front shock towers and 2) they were assembled by Karmann (of Karmann Ghia fame) whose rustproofing was inferior to that applied at BMW plants. Once restored and rustproofed by people who know what they are doing, they tend to hold up rather well.
The engine, fitted with a Bosch D-Jetronic electronic fuel injection in the 3.0 CSi is delightful. It effortlessly produces 200 hp (DIN) and has its redline above 6000 rpm. 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) times are in the low 7-second range and the brakes (ventilated discs with four-piston calipers all-round) are more than adequate.
msquare is right in pointing out that the pricing was in Porsche 911 territory but so was performance (Auto Motor und Sport compared it to the 911 S 2.4 back in the day) while seating four.
Having driven both, I personally wouldn’t recommend the 3.5 “upgrade” as the old 3.0 is a more sporty engine with a higher specific output. The 5-speed conversion makes a lot of sense though. My personal favorite it the “dog-leg” close ratio 5-speed from the early 635 CSis.
there’s a wonderful e9 in Tundra green listed in ebay. Have you noticed the ad?
I believe it originates from Fall River, MA. It’s a wonderful car and I am having some serious thoughts!
I just checked it out and personally, I wouldn’t pay much more for it than its current bid price. From the looks of the front fenders, the A pillars are likely to be a mess. The fenders themselves are going to need their bottom sections replaced. Also, judging from the rusty tail ends of the rocker panels (seen from the rear wheel wells, there may be some nasty surprises lurking under the covers. More generally, unless you keep it completely dry (something the seller mentions), this car is not going to remain in roadworthy condition much longer as there is rust in all sorts of critical places.
Goes to show what you can see if you know where to lookfor it. AFter that ad, I took a peek at e9coupe.com and that community has also roundly lambasted the car–essentially echoing all your points.
It must be nearly impossible to locate a decent dry car under 15k, anything under that amount is in line for massive rust proofing it appears. what a shame.
BTW, love that car in silver. But those lines look good in most colors. Is it your daily driver?
Nope. My daily drivers are an electric bike (ideal for a congested smallish city like Geneva) and a pair of old 3-series wagons, a manual E36 328i and an automatic E46 330d driven mostly by my wife. Cheap, quick and reasonably practical. The 328 even has a tow hitch for loads up to 1600 kg.
Frankly, the CSi is simply too good (and too thirsty) to use in stop-and-go traffic. Also, there is salt on the road roughly from November to April.
I like silver a lot but frankly, color was at the bottom of my list of priorities when I began shopping for an E9. The first 3 items were rust, rust and rust. In the end, I found my current car, which had been rear-ended but had very little rust and was cheap enough to leave a budget for fixing what needed to be fixed.
csi.ch, yours is a real beauty. i’m surprised that your seats look different from the u.s. model and i don’t see any seatbelts.
i’ve posted a picture from ebay of an almost perfect example:
at $37k it hasn’t yet hit the reserve on ebay. imho, it’s worth every penny. blue isn’t my favorite interior color but it works here. also, i believe some of them have a factory sunroof option which this one is missing here.
i’ve always thought that if i had the money to spare a 3.0cs would be my weekend toy.
Thanks! I believe my seats are the same type as those pictured. They may look different as they (mine) still have their somewhat tired original leather. Seat belts in mine are three-point automatic but retrofitted from a more recent (1973) car. The original seat belts were probably manual.
I would rather skip the sunroof option. It’s an additional source of rust (clogged drains) and it’s tiny anyway…
you’re right about the seats, of course. i think it was the lack of headrests that threw me. i’ve always admired that era bmw seats and headrests. i also like the contemporary saab and volvo leather seats.
i’m sure your car is better off without the sunroof. i know collectors prefer it with out one but i find that i really like sunroofs (when they work properly.
anyhow, it’s a great car and i’m jealous!
Safe as Milk…. is that a Captain Beefheart reference???
Actually, these are old photos. In the meantime I managed to source the correct headrests, so it looks even more like the ones in the blue car.
Re sunroof: I am with you. Sunroofs are a great addition to most cars and I have them in both my daily drivers. It’s just that in the E9, they are a source of constant trouble. Also, you get plenty of fresh air without it…
Mathis, at last we see your beauty, and what a gem it is! I’m literally drooling here. Enjoy, and take good care of it!
Thanks, Paul. One more reason to come over and check it out by yourself!
I just saw that you filed this as a 1970 model. The 3.0 CSi was actually launched in October 1971. It’s difficult to pinpoint the date of the pictured car as it is no longer original (pre-1973 wipers, side grilles and wheels but post-1973 “kidney” and headrests. If I had to guess, I would say it’s likely to be a 1972 or 1973 model .