Cheers Redrat, I'll take a look at the retro-fit cruise control as it'll open up the field of potential donors for me.
People who bought six cylinder Z3's seem to have ticked all the show off options: nasty colour combination leather seats, vulgar 18" black alloys, chrome windscreen surrounds etc, but skimped on things like a/c, cruise control and servicing.
That meerkat sticker did make me smile, I might try to get my hands on a pair of these instead though -
...but I'll probably fit more authentic badges to the car.
Speaking of which, this turned up in the post today -
Genuine late 50's/early 60's part which looks suitably weathered for my preferred patinated look. Bit of a bargain too as it was roughly £300 cheaper than the only other genuine script I could find for sale -
So, back to the issue of a potential donor. ebay had a 98,000 mile car in silver in the dealer classified's for just under £2k, and it was only 35 miles away.
It looked pretty good in the pictures so I took my better half and went to test drive it today with a view to potentially buying it. OK, it was a 1.9 M44 engine car but I wanted to give it a chance to impress me despite the poor (undeserved?) reputation.
The ad stated it had air conditioning, cruise control and service history, calling it a 'stunning example'.
On arrival it was parked right at the front of the forecourt, presumably to attract people in to view the other stock, and I have to say we were stunned when we saw it. In fact my wife was so stunned she refused to get out of the car. Our car that is, not the Z3, which was a mess.
It had no air con, no cruise control, it was full of fag ash and there was mildew on the seats. The service history turned out to be a sheaf of MOT failure sheets padded out with Chinese restaurant menus and the MOT had expired.
Under the bonnet the engine looked fine - no oil leaks and the oil was nice and clean - but some boy racer had fitted an aftermarket induction kit that looked cheap, nasty and unnecessary.
To be fair it started on the first turn of the key and sounded fine mechanically and not bad aurally (I think the four pot might even sound pretty good with the right exhaust fitted), and I was surprised how quickly it picked up and lost revs (I expected it to have a much more pronounced flywheel effect).
I'd asked the dealer if I could take it for a test drive (even though there was no way I was going to buy it) as I wanted to see if WCA is right about the M44 both sucking and blowing.
Key in hand, a quick walk round the car to check a few essentials revealed a tyre that was balder than me and a handbrake that didn't work.
So, I still haven't ever driven a BMW as I didn't want to risk my licence or my life driving a piece of crap death trap on the public highway.
I appreciate your post btw WCA, I know you don't rate the driving experience the 1.9 gives but I still
want to see for myself as one man's meat, etc.
Oh well, the perfect donor's out there somewhere...