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1989 BMW Z1

  • 1989 BMW Z1
  • 16,000 miles from new
  • Rarely seen modern classic
  • One of just over 100 examples registered in the UK
  • Accompanied by its original service box

BMW designed the Z1 to give fun-loving drivers the opportunity of owning a concept car. The two-seater Z1 was first shown to the public in prototype form in August 1986, and 4 years later, ten were leaving the Munich production line each week.

The BMW Z1 features a wide range of new ideas including a monocoque-styled steel chassis with a bonded plastic boot and resilient plastic body which is resistant to minor damage. The body panels are recyclable after return to the manufacturer where they are ground down and the material re-used. The doors slide down into the side sill by an electro-mechanical system.

Close attention has been paid to the aerodynamics, particularly the underside of the car. The undertray conducts the airflow beneath the car effectively that the Z1 is claimed to be the first production car to utilise racing car ground effect. This effect reduces aerodynamic lift at the front and rear wheels.

According to the cars Service Book, this particular example was delivered new to Switzerland via the BMW dealership in Basel, Olympic Garage AG in November 1989. We know the car was barely used for the first 3 years as it came up at auction with Christies in November 1992, showing less than 200km on the clock. It had a pre-sale estimate of £22,000-£25,000 and sold for a whopping £32,328 GBP including premiums, a huge result for a 3 year old sports car. Who bought the car is unclear but a Swiss registration document dated 2004 shows it in the name of Ho-Hotel GmbH in Rümlang, Switzerland. Also on file is a letter from Ho-Hotel GmbH confirming that the car has been owned by a Herr Klaus E. Sträuli since 1989, which we believe is incorrect and it is more likely he bought the car at the auction in 1992. The date of the letter confirming his ownership is August 2005 and would indicate that the car was being sold at that point.

The next owner is not known to us but we do know that the BMW Z1 ended up in the Bahamas because in 2010, the previous owner, Peter Hannen, bought a house in Nassau and it came with the Z1 in the garage! Peter is a very well known English car collector and racing driver who ran all sorts of amazing historic Grand Prix cars through the 1980’s and 90’s and was also the co-founder of the Grand Prix de Monaco Historique with Valentine Lindsay, another well known collector and racing driver.

In Peter’s ownership the car was used sparingly and was looked after by a local BMW specialist, who had looked after the car since it had arrived in the Carribean and who serviced the car every year regardless of mileage. The car was also driven once a fortnight in a 30km loop to keep it in good working order.

In 2016 the time came to sell the BMW Z1 and the current owner, Mary Davison, bought the car in December 2015, shipping the car back to the UK in February 2016. The car was then UK registered and taxes paid and has been used on high days and holidays since then.

Today the BMW Z1 presents beautifully in its original colours of Red with Black and is an absolute joy to drive. These delightful sports cars are fast becoming very collectible and with just over 100 examples registered in the UK, these are a very rare sight to see on the road and with this examples low mileage and stunning condition, it must be one of, if not the finest available in the UK.

Please note the registration number RAF 93 is not automatically included in the deal but can be bought separately.

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