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1971 BMW 1602 Convertible - Silver

Make: BMW
Model: 2002
SubModel: Vollcabrio
Type: Convertible
Trim: 2 door
Year: 1971
Mileage: 000000
VIN: 1558610
Color: Silver
Cylinders: 4
Fuel: Gasoline
Transmission: Manual
Drive type: RWD
Interior color: Black
Drive side: Left-hand drive
Vehicle Title: Clean
Item location: San Francisco, California, United States

1971 BMW 2002 2 door Additional Info:

This a super clean, solid and well maintained 1971 BMW 1602 Vollcabrio in original Polar silver and black interior. One of a relative handful left in the world (they only made 1500 or so of this model, and a lot of them are gone now).

If you’re looking at this car, chances are you’re a fan of the 02 series design lines, especially the round tail lights. Maybe you even owned a 2002 at some point, or rode in a friend’s. Special line of cars.

My first car was a 1968 BMW 1600 hardtop that a soldier had brought back from Europe. I always wondered what a convertible would look like in this model, not knowing that they actually had made any.

Fast forward to 5 years ago, I stumbled across this gem. The only issue? It was in South Africa.

Luckily, a really good friend of mine has an uncle who works at Mercedes Benz in S Africa, and he knew the owner. So the owner brought it over to the dealership so I knew it wasn’t a scam, then had it shipped to the US.

There was a slight hiccup after registering it in CA where I live: DMV didn’t renew my plate 12 months later, and made me go through a whole process to have it exempt in CA (the Air Resource Board gave me the exemption letter - I have it on file). It is now licensed in CA and has the ARB exemption (that's rare....many don't come to CA because of that requirement).

From what I can gather, the owner bought it from a woman who is an eye doctor in S Africa. She brought it over from Europe, from her son in law who had passed. She owned it for 30ish years, and during the whole process, the previous owner managed to get the original title/license from her from when she imported into S Africa many years ago. I have that document in my files, so I know the car is the real deal.

The upside: it drives REALLY well, and gets a LOT of looks. It starts and runs very smoothly. Mechanically it’s super sound. The upholstery is very well kept. The top is still complete, although the fabric has tightened, so it’s a bear to close (I typically leave it down at all times,, but in a pinch, you can put it up...the top itself has no holes, the window is good, and the clamps work). Wheels have been recently powder coated. Air filter housing has been powder coated too (looks sharp!). It has seat belts (shoulder). It’s super easy to work on, if you’re inclined (it comes with a Hanes manual). There is no ‘cancer’ on the car (as Phradeus the mechanic in SF said, is rare): wheel wells in the back have no rust.

Some nitpicks: there is some bubbling paint on the passenger door. My friend’s uncle sprayed the car with oil to protect it during shipping, so it still coats some parts of the car (doesn’t bother me, and protects it, but looks like hell). Some of the chrome in the interior is chipped. Someone put speakers in the doors at some point and the grills rusted (looks awful to me) - but door panels can be easily recovered (in SF, anywhere between $200-400 per door). The front bumper is SLIGHTLY off (it can be bent back if you know a body shop). The rocker panel cover on the driver side is off, but I have it.

Why am I selling it? I bought it when we lived in Marin, and I envisioned driving it around back roads. But we moved back to SF, and it sits in the garage most of the time (on a trickle charger). I do run it every two to three weeks to the bank or Whole Foods, but it loves to drive. Plus we have two small kids, and my wife won’t let me drive them around in it (don’t blame her); it’s more fun to share the drive.

Other facts: mileage shows 800 km or so, and I THINK it’s only gone around the horn once. But I have no way to guarantee that other than I think if it’s over 200k, the car would be in terrible shape.

You won’t regret buying this car. It’s pretty low maintenance and is a blast to drive. Fingers crossed it lands up in the right home!