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Long-term review

BMW M635 CSI - long-term review

Cheaper than a kitchen
Published: 20 Feb 2020


  • SPEC

    BMW M635 CSi

What do you think of our new project car?

Welcome to the world’s most impractical kitchen. No, this isn’t a Top Gear challenge where Tom Kerridge ends up in the boot surrounded by prosciutto. But rather the result of saving for a new kitchen while browsing classic car websites. Man-math has claimed another victim.

There’s a very simple reason for this. My current kitchen works absolutely fine, even the extractor fan. My garage, on the other hand, is empty, and what better solution than something 80s, Bavarian and broken?

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You’ll be pleased to learn the terms ‘fantastic deal’ and ‘broken’ are entirely connected, because inevitably this doesn’t work. Yet. One man’s junk is another man’s treasure, or in this case, one man’s headache is another man’s financial mistake.

Anyway. What you’re looking at is a 1986 BMW M635 CSi – E24 to be precise – complete with iconic shark nose front end and an interior so rectangular it could be a level in Minecraft. Not to be confused with the 217bhp 635 CSi Motorsport Edition, the M635 CSi is the one you really want. That’s because it’s powered by the 286bhp M88/3 engine found in the E28 M5, the same one derived from the original M1. Officially it’s the first-gen M6, even if it was only badged that way in America and Japan.

What’s the plan; utilise an appreciating classic as the base for a resto-job before flipping it for a tidy profit? C’mon, that’s the sort of attitude someone with a nice new kitchen would have. Instead, it’s becoming a track car.

Because the moment you start obsessing about a car’s future value is the moment you stop enjoying it. That and the interior is getting a bit tatty… so it may as well be stripped out in favour of a rollcage and bucket seat. The suspension is getting tired too. Best fit some Clubsport dampers with BBS Motorsport wheels just in case. A perfect recipe for one spicy bratwurst. Albeit a takeaway one, because who knows how long my old kitchen will last.

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