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BMW 2002: Buying guide and review (1966-1976)

BMW 2002 tii front BMW 2002 tii side BMW 2002 tii rear BMW 2002 tii driving BMW 2002 tii touring BMW 1600-2 side BMW 2002 interior BMW 1600-2 cornering
It's fair to say that the 2002 range helped make BMW the force that it is today. Before the 02s and the Neue Klasse saloons that preceded them, BMW really was struggling to survive. 
 
Looking back, the success of the 02s is no great surprise - these are great-looking cars that are easy to look after but also a hoot to drive, thanks to torquey engines and safe but entertaining rear-wheel drive handling. 
 
Which one to buy? 
 
It all started when BMW condensed the Neue Klasse's best attributes to a smaller, more affordable package. In 1966 the 1600-2 was launched: a two-door saloon, powered by a 96bhp version of the M10 engine from the 1600 saloon. 
 
BMW wanted to market the car in the US, but the sole engine choice was hampering sales, and the more powerful twin-carb 1600ti engine wasn't homologated for use Stateside. However, the 1991cc M10 engine from the 2000CS Coupe was, and inserting it into the smaller and lighter body spawned one of the greatest sporting saloons of the '60s: the 2002. This, coupled with the addition of the fuel-injected tii, took BMW to new heights, especially in the USA, where it was a huge success. 
 
At the top of the tree is the 2002 Turbo, one of the very first turbocharged performance cars. Featuring a large KKK turbocharger, power was increased by 40bhp over the tii, with wider wheels, brakes and arches to match. Although our guide focuses mainly on the naturally aspirated models, but the much of the information – especially rust spots – applies to the Turbo.
 
Performance and specs
 
BMW 2002 (1968 model) 
Engine 1991cc four-cylinder, SOHC, single Solex Carburettor 
Power 113bhp @5800rpm 
Torque 116lb ft @ 3000rpm 
Steering Worm and roller 
Brakes Discs front, drums rear 
Top speed 108mph 
0-60mph 11.3secs
 
Dimensions and weight
 
Wheelbase 2500mm
Length 4230mm
Width 1590mm
Height 1410mm
kerb weight 940kg
 
Common problems
 
We spoke with Barney Halse of East Sussex-based BMW specialist Classic Heroes to find out about the 2002’s weak points:
 
• As with most cars of this age, corrosion is the biggest killer. Most panels are readily available, but it could be prohibitively expensive to buy a car with a rusty shell and restore it with all new panels. 

• Low values in the '80s and '90s means lot of older restorations will have been done on the cheap, using non-original parts and patching up corrosion instead of repairing it properly. A lot of these cars are on the market now, and even though they might look shiny on top, they can hide all sorts underneath.

• The main hot-spots are the rear spring boxes on the inner wheelarch housings, outer arches into the rear sill areas, inner and outer sills (especially around the four jacking points), front inner wings, the lower outer and inner front panels, front floors, lower A-post areas, inner front wing box sections and boot floors. 

• The Touring is slightly more complicated, although most of the metalwork can be repaired using saloon parts. It’s important that you check the condition of the tailgate, though. If it has rusted badly, it could be extremely hard to repair and it's almost Impossible to replace. 

• With regular oil changes and maintenance, the M10 engine is good for over 100,000 miles between rebuilds. If the engine hasn't been rebuilt by now, it will definitely need a thorough going over. 

• A small amount of oil burning is normal but any blue smoke from the exhaust indicates worn valve stem seals, or even worn cylinder bores.

• When the oil has warmed through, hold the car at about 4000rpm for a short distance, back of the throttle, and check your mirror for signs of smoke.

• Be wary of any car that appears to have cooling issues, as the aluminium cylinder head can warp and crack if it overheats. 

• Both manual and auto gearboxes are strong, and should outlast the engine if they have been serviced correctly, though the manual’s synchromesh can wear out, causing a crunch into second and third gear on downshifts. 

• A floppy gearlever can usually be rectified with a couple of new bushes, costing around £30. 

• A limited-slip differential and five-speed close-ratio gearbox are rare and desirable options, although later five-speed gearboxes from other models are regularly swapped in for extra drivability. 

• For ease of servicing and reliability, the carburettor car is the one to go for – tii’s complex Kugelfischer fuel injection warrants specialist servicing, though is a wonderful car when it is set-up correctly – and is certainly worth the extra effort if you can. 

• There’s great parts support for the '02, from BMW Classic in Germany, and companies such as Jaymic in the UK, 2002 specialists for over 20 years. 
 
Model history
 
1966: 1600-2 introduced in Europe (name soon changed to 1602)
1968: 2002 (carburettor) launched with 113bhp, first in the USA then the rest of the world. Twin-carburettor 2002ti (with 120bhp) introduced into Continental Europe later that year
1969: 130bhp 2002tii introduced, featuring Kugelfischer mechanical fuel injection
1971: Range-wide minor mid-life facelift with new indicators, bumpers and side rubbing strips. Europe-only1.8-litre 1802 debuts, straddling the gap between 1.6- and 2.0-litre. Michelotti-styled Touring three-door hatchback launched, as a 1602, 1802, 2002 and tii
1973: Another facelift, this time changing to square tail-lights and black plastic front grille strips. 2002 Turbo is unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show. It’s produced for just ten months, until being killed off by the global fuel crisis  
1974: Simplified base-spec 75bhp 1502 launched in Europe as an economy model
1976: Production of all models (except the 1502, which went on to 1977) ends.
 
Owners clubs, forums and websites
 
• www.classicheroes.co.uk
• www.jaymic.com
• www.02forum.co.uk
 
Summary and prices
 
As long as the shell is solid and the engine pulls well, you can enjoy an ’02 on a modest budget. It’s more important to buy on condition than on model, although our favourite all-rounder is the tii – the injection gives it a stronger pull that you’ll really appreciate on the road.
 
Values are generally still very affordable, with even the best saloon commanding around £10,000. Pay between £4000-£7000 for a decent runner, with £1500 the starting price for a resto project. The Touring has always been the value option, with the best coming in at around £7000. 
 
Things get considerably more expensive when you start looking at the 2002tii models. These start from around £7000, with usable examples sitting between £12,000-£20,000. The best command upwards of £25,000. Turbos take another step up, with projects starting from around £15,000-£25,000. Decent cars go for around £55,000, although special cars could have been known to push £85,000. 
BMW 2002 tii front BMW 2002 tii side BMW 2002 tii rear BMW 2002 tii driving BMW 2002 tii touring BMW 1600-2 side BMW 2002 interior BMW 1600-2 cornering
Last updated: 4th May 2016
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BMW 2002 cars for sale

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BMW 2002
14995 39950 GBP
  • Rare BMW 2002 tii Project Car

    POA POA

    Rare BMW 2002 tii Project Car Only once in a blue moon does a car this rare and this special come up for sale in such a pure and unadulterated form. Ordered new from BMW Park Lane in 1972, LHD was specified as the owner planned to use the car to tour around Europe and at the same time explore the possibility of taking up residence in Portugal. Many happy motoring kilometres were had travelling in the tii around countries such as France, Spain and Switzerland before arriving in Portugal. Eventually a plot of land was bought and construction of a villa commenced. However progress was disrupted by the Carnation Revolution and the decision was made to relocate the tii back to the UK where it was left in dry storage. There it remained for many years eventually being passed on to his stepson who also kept it dry stored until he finally decided to bring it to Munich Legends for a valuation. Initially the outside appearance of this Golf Yellow tii suggests neglect, but look only a little deeper and the car’s true soul reveals itself; our workshop team were stunned by the integrity of the car’s chassis, underside and danger-spots. It turns out that the superficial damage to the paintwork be

    • Year: 1972
    • Mileage: 38600 mi
    For sale
    Munich Legends
    01825 740 456 VIEW CONTACT NUMBER
  • BMW 2002 Alpina Look '74

    €39,950(£35,619.42) €39,950(£35,619.42)

    Specifications >>>>> Oldtimerfarm specializes in consignment sales of vintage and collection cars and we are proud to present you this car. Oldtimerfarm is located in Belgium, 9880 Aalter, Steenweg op Deinze 51C, where this car is in our showroom. We are open from Tuesday to Saturday 10-17h (also without appointment). We are closed on Sundays and Mondays. Mondays on appointment only. Make sure you scroll down to look at the extensive photo report (100 pictures). Of course, a more detailed description can be obtained by telephone. Contact us: Xavier: 0032 472 40 1338 (NL, FR, DE, EN, IT) info@oldtimerfarm.be Olivier: 0032 473 11 7300 (NL, FR, DE, EN) olivier@oldtimerfarm.be Oldtimerfarm from Aalter would also like to sell your classic car or car collection. For more information, please contact Xavier. Exhibitions where you can find us: 18-20/11/2016 InterClassics Brussel - Belgium 25-27/11/2016 Milano Autoclassica - Italy 17-18/12/2016 Dreamcar International Kortrijk - Belgium 12-15/01/2017 InterClassics Maastricht - The Netherlands 28-29/01/2017 Auto Retro Brugge - Belgium 11-12/02/2017 Flanders Collection Car Gent- Belgium 03-05/03/2017 Antwerp Classic Salon - Belgium

    • Year: 1974
    For sale
  • BMW 2002

    £14,995 £14,995

    Alloy wheels JUST ARRIVED IN AND RARELY OFFERED TO THE MARKET THIS EARLY BEAUTIFULL BMW 2002 CONVERTIBLE GARAGED SO THE CONDITION EXPLAINS ITSELF PLEASE CALL TO HAVE THIS BEAUTIFULL MACHINE EXPLAINED TO YOU THOUSANDS OF POUNDS AND LOVE SPENT ON THIS AMAZING 2002 A TRUE INVESTMENT COMES COMPLETE WITH A WHOLE BOOT FULL OF GENUINE SPARES COLLECTED ALONG THE WAY INCLUDING A ORIGINAL RARE BLUE POINT BLAUPOINT RADIO PLEASE CALL TO DISCUSS

    • Mileage: 90000 mi
    • Engine size: 1990
    For sale
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