By on March 6, 2014

11 - 1974 BMW 2002 Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinI see a fair number of BMW 2002s during my trips to wrecking yards, but for some reason I’ve been hoarding the photos of the few that I photograph. We’ve seen this ’73, this ’73, and today’s ’74. I found this car in a Denver self-serve yard about four months back, which means it has been fed to The Crusher by now. Just as well— this car had some scary, Minnesota-grade rust.
02 - 1974 BMW 2002 Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinWhen you see this on the fenders, you know the important structural unibody components probably aren’t so safe.
06 - 1974 BMW 2002 Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinStill, this car was visiting Colorado state parks as recently as 2006.
05 - 1974 BMW 2002 Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinThanks to all the E21 320is in wrecking yards, there’s not much demand for used M10 engines. This one probably went to The Crusher along with the rest of the car.
01 - 1974 BMW 2002 Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinSomeone had already grabbed the instrument cluster by the time I got to this car.
12 - 1974 BMW 2002 Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinPlenty of Bondo to be seen.

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26 Comments on “Junkyard Find: 1974 BMW 2002...”


  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    That’s a year 2000 sticker, not 2006!

  • avatar
    Morea

    Not fuel injected?

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      That would be a 2002TII. The regular 2002 was single-carb, the 2002TI (not sold in the US AFAIK) was dual-carb.

      I’d call that Colorado rust. If it had been in Minnesota it would have been in a junkyard 20 years ago. These cars are absolute world-champion first class rust magnets. For German cars, beaten only by their big sister E9 Coupes.

  • avatar
    1998redwagon

    it’s brown!
    save it!

  • avatar
    raresleeper

    What’s the horsepower on these little guys? 130 or something of that sort?

    Would have loved to have known the amount of miles this car traveled. I bet its had quite the adventure before being fed to Jaws.

    Look at that rust? Wow. Epidemic proportions. It was time to go.

    I’ve seen a 2002 Turbo on Ebay going for an excess of 50K. Granted, that may not be too bad for the rare bird it was.

    I also wouldn’t mind a clean, well-preserved, round tail light version 2002 to add to my stable.

    • 0 avatar
      JuniperBug

      I’m pretty sure the base 2002 was about 100 hp. The tii was the 130 hp variant. My dad had one of these in the 70s, and said that, FWD aside, my Mk2 Jetta reminded him a lot of how it drove – similar power, weight, upright greenhouse, and Germanic stability on the highway for such small, boxy cars.

  • avatar
    MAGICGTI

    Are these appreciating yet? It seems that given BMW’s large enthusiast presence that the iconic 2002 would climb in values. Not that this one is anything other than crusher fodder but I’ve seen the E9 3.0Cs slowly appreciate.

    The E30 has been climbing a bit for the more desirable models (late 325is in particular).

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      Very much so. A clean 2002 in nice shape is easily a $10K car these days. Not many years ago they were $4-$5K for a nice one. TIIs are $15K and up. And prices are going nowhere but up.

      I too would like to have one, but I want one with a few updates, like a 5spd and A/C. Makes them a lot more usable.

      The biggest issue with the E9s is that they are HORRIFYINGLY expensive to restore. The body is very complex, and was not particularly well built to start with. Just getting the power windows working right is a nightmare. And they are even worse rusters. So they are not worth much more than a 2002. Such lovely cars when they are right though. President of my local BMWCCA chapter has a decent one (and a PERFECT 2002TII), and another member is doing a nut and bolt restoration of one.

      Clean, lowish mileage E30s are going for crazy money now. I kick myself every single day for selling my ’91 318is. Stupid, stupid, stupid. I haven’t found another one as good since.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        There is a beautifully restored 2002 I occasionally see in the summer parked way back in the farthest lot at work (where I generally park). Still trying to figure out whose it is.

      • 0 avatar
        photog02

        The prices are getting crazy, and I speak as someone that has owned a 2002 or 2002tii for each of the last 15 years. My first car was a 2002 that I paid well under a thousand to make mine. It is sad that some 16 year old won’t get that chance in the future.

      • 0 avatar
        3Deuce27

        I have a near perfect, low mileage one(318is). Can’t imagine selling it. The last ‘really’ fun to drive BMW 2-dr saloon. Almost as much fun as my ‘Girlie’ Miata. In the corners, more fun then my M5 powered E-36 328is

        Most, decent ones, when you can find one, are bringing numbers above $5,000_Plus

  • avatar
    rmwill

    No pictures of the rear shock towers. That’s the rust point that kills these cars dead.

    • 0 avatar
      Stumpaster

      You know it!

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      And the front shock towers, and the sills, and the firewall, and really the whole darned car. I saw one years ago in a junkyard here in Maine that had a gaping rust hole in the ROOF! How does that even happen?!?!

      • 0 avatar
        Lorenzo

        But they had all those problems solved when the successor E21 came out! The 2002, and the E21, were the cars that induced GM to turn a Chevy Cavalier into the Cadillac Cimarron. Too bad the clientele they were going for was more Pontiac than Cadillac, otherwise the Pontiac Cinnamon Bun could have become the poor man’s Beemer.

      • 0 avatar
        3Deuce27

        “gaping rust hole in the ROOF” _ _ _ When there is a dent in the roof, like when someone sat on it, or a runaway cantaloup tried to fly fleeing its pursuers and abortively came to earth on the roof of the unfortunate rust magnet.

        Really, never could understand the attraction of the ’2002′. Didn’t handle that well in comparison to the Opel Manta, Pinto, Vega, and Capri, even the Celica could hang with it and then run away from it in the straights. And, it looked like a kindergartener’s crude drawing of a car. Build quality was suspect, and obvious, even when new. Oh, and did I mention, it was over priced… Go figure.

        Ok, fanboys, let it fly.

  • avatar
    Mark in Maine

    @krhodes: The ’02 that you saw might have begun life as a Florida car – I’ve heard from several people up here that a Florida vehicle will begin rusting from the top down. That, and the fact that I often see “Clean Florida Car” in ads for used vehicles. My 2002 rusted out in the usual fashion.

    • 0 avatar
      mkirk

      I had a 68 Cougar that spent its life in Jacksonville and I will vouch for the rusting from the top down. It was a vinyl roof car though but one could poke fingers through the A-Pillars when i got it. Should have walked away then.

  • avatar
    motormouth

    Is Colorado essentially one big auto wrecking yard, or does Murilee never go anywhere else?

    (I used to live in PA and I’m sure I remember some yards up there, too.)

  • avatar
    z9

    By 1976 BMW sold both this car and the 530i in the US. By comparison, the 2002 is unrefined in every possible way and despite being a bit smaller, not nearly as much fun to drive. But the 2002 did have the advantage of an engine that didn’t crack every 50,000 miles. Over the long term, I guess that’s what mattered. Rust can be fixed. Cracked engines get old real fast.

  • avatar
    threeer

    I weep for every 2002 I see in this condition. I owned a 1974 in Baikal Blue (actually sold away a 1991 Sentra SE-R to clear the deck to get the 2002). Of the (over) 2 dozen cars I’ve owned, the ’02 is still the ONLY car I truly miss. Yes, it’s a brick on wheels, but for those of us that love them, they are OUR bricks on wheels!

  • avatar
    AllThumbs

    Just checking TTAC after about a week, and I hope Murilee’s not trying to tell me something, since this is two JFs in a row that are very close to cars in my current mini-fleet. I’ve got an 84 K car and a 73 2002tii. Maybe I should be feeling cold up and down my spine or drivetrain or something about now.


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