Alfie's new Imola ///M....! (Long)

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Post by Guest » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 21:54

Well done mate. Bootyful!

Can't think of anything more to say.

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Alfie
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  M roadster S54
Location: Broadchurch....

Alfie's new Imola ///M....! (Long)

Post by Alfie » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 21:56

Apologies for the delay in getting this done, but here it is.
Thanks Si.

Well, after a year and a half of searching, I’ve finally achieved my goal!

Buying my first Z3 back in July 2003 was a bit of a landmark in my life. A wish I’d had for so many years had finally come true. My Topaz 3.0i took three months of searching to find, and oh, what a gem she is!
With my comparatively little detail knowledge of Z3s and to be honest, sports cars in general, I had decided that the ///M roadster wasn’t for me due to the ‘extra care, attention and cost’ that they demanded, but I still hankered for something substantial under the bonnet. A 2.8 or 3.0 was the way to go and I still reckon that was the best choice for me at the time.

I’ve always been immensely happy with my 3.0i, but in June 2004, the inevitable happened…..I met Charlotte….and fell head over heels! I knew at that moment that an ///MR in Imola was the ONLY next step for me. She looked AMAZING, and by all accounts, she performs as good as she looks. I also met DavidM’s stunning Imola, and some time later, Big MrP (an older model S50 in the same colour combo) both of which simply served to reinforce my desires.

I read all the books and all the posts on Zroadster (the latter being far more useful than the former) and boned up on the facts and figures about the ///MR, the differences between the S50 and S54 models and their respective problems. The characteristics (and characters) of each soon became clearly apparent!
I decided that the S54 was the model for me, not just because of that little DSC button and the much improved suspension, but for other reasons too, especially the ‘rarity appeal’ which (sadly perhaps) gives me a real buzz…!
All ///MRs are rare, (how often do you see one on the road…apart from your own, obviously?) but just incase you weren’t aware, the later S54 model saw allegedly only 79 right hand drive examples produced, (Source: www.bmwmregistry.com) the majority of which I believe were either Estoril Blue or Titanium Silver. That doesn’t leave many examples in the other seven colours!

And so, a year and a half ago, the search for an Imola S54 began.

Charlotte came on the market, but Bryn was damn quick off the mark and struck a deal before I could even stop dribbling and get my offer in! I’m just happy she stayed in the fold.

I was well aware of how rare these cars are, so I widened my search slightly to include Black Sapphire with Imola and Black interior, like Phil’s, because that’s just stunning too.
And some time later, I paid a visit to the amusingly overpriced Hexagon of Highgate to check out AussieZ3’s Phoenix Yellow ///M before it was exported to Oz. She sat there sparkling in the sunlight looking like liquid gold. I soon changed my mind about Phoenix and realised that it’s an exciting, bold, strong colour that really suits the car. Then I met Jay’s too and I was completely sold.

Almost every lunchtime was spent trawling the usual local and national websites with zero results. BMW.co.uk, Auto Trader, Pistonheads, Exchange and Mart and any other site that came up on a search. There were S54 Silvers and Estorils in fab condition every week, but never the elusive Imola.
There were a few false starts. I found a black one in Coventry at a really good price, but it was quite high mileage and their offer for my 3.0i was slightly less than stupid.

Then there was that rather odd Phoenix I found in Slough. First UK registered January 2001, but RHD S54 production didn’t start (allegedly) till February 2001….! Very strange. The price was right, but I decided against it because there were too many questions about its history. Plus, the wife ‘suggested’ that Phoenix was a colour suited to the ‘slightly younger man’…..So that was the end of that!

I also came across a few examples in black which were advertised as 2001 but turned out to be late registered S50 models.

I replied to a private ad in Auto Trader for an S54 in Steel Grey with Imola and black inside. What a FAB looking motor….and talk about rare! I’ve only ever heard of one other in this colour. I thought for a long time, but didn’t buy in the end because it just didn’t feel right. I can’t explain exactly, but I didn’t feel a passion for it, perhaps because I’m fed up with seeing silver, grey and dull coloured cars everywhere. I much prefer a little colour in my life, especially on an extroverted motor like a Zed!

Then at last, it happened….. Whilst trawling the BMW web site just before Christmas 2005, I ventured into the ‘Under Preparation’ section of the ///MR + ///MC search. There it was! An S54 ///MR in Imola with Imola and black inside! And the incredible thing was that it was at a dealer just 5 miles away in Watford! Obviously, I bunked out of work early and dashed straight round there.

She had only just been dropped off by the previous owner who had PX’d her for a new Chelsea Tractor. They’d given her a quick wash, but nothing else had been done and she was looking a little tired and jaded.
She’s got all the bells and whistles though, (hard top, cruise, HK, etc.) and after a blast up the A41 towards Aylesbury, and Scotthall’s assurance that they would make her all bright and shiny again, a few days later I put my money down.

They took several weeks and did a whole load of work on her both mechanically and cosmetically and she was finally ready for collection on Friday 13th January…

They turned her out a million times better than when I first saw her, but she still needs that extra TLC and personal touch that only unhurried weekend dedication and graft can achieve. (Or maybe £500 at Porsche Restorers….?)

There are ongoing things which the dealer is still to sort out for me. There are some standard accessories missing (tonneau cover, rear window towel, hard top cover, etc.) and a few cosmetic issues which I’m insisting they sort out. I paid top dollar for the car, so I won’t give up till everything is perfect and as good as new. They are aware that I have another car for the daily slog, so are not exactly rushing to get the Imola sorted. It’s taking longer than it should, but we haven’t come to blows just yet!

One of the things I’m pleased about with this example is the fact that she’s totally original. That’s exactly what I wanted, so I then have a free reign to do a few tasteful changes of my own. Whatever I do change though, will be easily reversible so she can be restored to stock later in life if she does become, as I believe she should, a true collector’s piece.

Mods I’m considering are:
Front strut brace. Essential, but Admiral Insurance are putting the dampers on that.
ACS polished steel roll hoops. Coz I can.
ACS front splitters. Nice but pricey.
Slightly louder set of pipes. Yum!
Z8 chrome washer nozzles. Tiny addition, massive effect.
Chrome door handles. The wife likes them.
Painted brake calipers. Nice, but straying a little too far from original perhaps?
Silver indicator bulbs. Easy.
Lowering springs. Maybe, but I’m no expert.

Apart from that, I intend to keep her pretty much as stock, but only time will tell if I manage to keep that vow!

Selling the Topaz will be a great wrench because it’s a fabulous car in stunning condition, but sadly it’s got to be done. Keeping both (along with my everyday E36 323i cabriolet) would be a bit audacious, wouldn’t it?

So here’s to the first summer of fun in the new Imola ///M….!
I can’t wait!

Incidentally, she doesn’t have a name yet.
I realise I’m opening myself up for some serious jibes here, but any suggestions?

Thanks for reading.

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Cheers!
Alfie.
Last edited by Alfie on Thu 02 Feb, 2006 12:24, edited 1 time in total.
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martlet
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Post by martlet » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 21:58

Looks brilliant, congratulations Alfie!
SEP 2003: Bought 2002 Z3 M Coupé Titanium Silver with Black Leather.
OCT 2003: Adjustable interior Rear View Mirror.
Early 2005: Front Strong Strut. Replaced all tyres with F1s. Added rear Strong Strut.
AUG 2005: EXDOS Mod
SEP 2006: Retrofit Cruise Control

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Mr Tim
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Nice one

Post by Mr Tim » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 22:09

hi Alfie
nice one she looks Gorgeous and RED YES! now for the summer sun injoy

Mr Tim 8-)

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JAY
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Post by JAY » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 22:09

YIPPPPPPPY!!!!

Once again............. NICE ONE Alfie. 8-)

We're very pleased for you. :D


Jay & Lisa
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spokey
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Re: Alfie's new Imola ///M....! (Long)

Post by spokey » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 22:21

Alfie wrote: Slightly louder set of pipes. Yum!
Surely your pipes are loud enough? :twisted:

Congratulations, hope you and the hussy will have many happy miles together.

And the car, of course! :lol:
Ciao,
Spokey
jackal on PH wrote:i love your profile... an endless pornographic paroxysm of the letters BMW

do you actually like driving at all or are cars to you just a manifestation of some sort of pathological mother complex ?

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c_w
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Post by c_w » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 22:22

Looks nice! If there were only 79 S54 RHD roadsters, then there must be even less RHD S54 Coupes?

I think you're right about maybe lower springs; it seems to sit quite high, particularly in the top picture??

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Gazza
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Post by Gazza » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 22:33

Congratulations on the new arrival,she looks as bright as a button.

Gazza.
Gazza

"Understeer is when you hit the wall with the front of the car, oversteer is when you hit the wall with the rear of the car. Horsepower is how fast you hit the wall and torque is how far you take the wall with you"

S54 M roadster Image Mustang Fastback, BMW Z1, BMW M3 CSL.

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garyw
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Post by garyw » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 22:34

Congratulations again Alfie, looks mighty fine to me, plenty of polish been used there 8-)
Stunning in the red :colourful:
Pleased that you've finally got round to introducing her properly :D

Z8 washer jets, doesn't that involve drilling the holes larger ? non reversable- but excellent addition


Garyw

psst. the plates do match (front to rear :wink: )

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BostonGreenZ3
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Post by BostonGreenZ3 » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 22:49

Congrats again Alfie - absolutely stunning example & colour, well worth the wait 8-) :P
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tags
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Post by tags » Wed 01 Feb, 2006 22:53

Nice one Alfie.

Must have been hard to look for that long before finding the right one, very patient, well done.


Tags

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ChrisXL
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Post by ChrisXL » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 00:42

Alfie and Di.......... congrats with the new baby :lol:

She is beautifull........ where's the pic with the top up???? Have been waiting for that one!!!!
Can't wait to see her IRL, shame you're not coming down to Switzerland or to Scotland. :(
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AussieZ3
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Post by AussieZ3 » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 00:48

Congrats mate!
Enjoy!!!

Ps Is it 01, or 02??

FYI ACS don't make the hoops anymore, so get them from Alumex (who used to make them for ACS) I did, thanks to Simon for alerting me to them.

ps lucky getting the cruise! Mine's being retrofitted, but they are having a hard time getting the computer to recognise that its there, and so far it's not happening. :bawl:

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TonyCal
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Post by TonyCal » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 06:43

c_w wrote: If there were only 79 S54 RHD roadsters, then there must be even less RHD S54 Coupes?
Actuallly according to the M registry site there are 168 RHD S54 Coupe's built, so they are not as rare as the Roadster.

Well done Alfie, great find. Now stop polishing it and get out on a cruise. :)

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stu
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Post by stu » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 08:03

Alfie, MARVELLOUS. Chuffed to bits for you mate.

I'm sure it won't be long before we see 'Milly' out on a dawn raid!

It's nice to hear plans afoot to make her totally unique, reflecting your style.

Tony, I think the questions was S54 RHD M Coupe's. Can't be many.

May soon be realising a little pipe dream of my own too!
someone in a minority once wrote:I know I'm in a minority
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Paul.Stuhlfelder
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Post by Paul.Stuhlfelder » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 08:34

Stunning looking car, lovely colour :D
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Bloke
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Post by Bloke » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 09:07

stu wrote:


May soon be realising a little pipe dream of my own too!

So come on Stu, whats that all about?


Bloke


pps Garyw, no you dont have to drill to fit the Z8 washer Jets, well not on a 2.0 ltr 2000 they fit in as astandard, with the fitting kit

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Robin
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Post by Robin » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 09:08

Alfie
Congrats it bootifull !
So OBL now drives a chelsea tractor then :lol:
Do get a front strong strut. Well worth it. Tighter turn in & less bump shudder.
Elephant added £20 pa for mine. Having said that, my renewal is due & Elephant have bumped my premium up to £816 because of my claim last year so I'm switching to Norwich Union who have quoted me happy at just £666 just to get my business.

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Phoenix Nights
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Post by Phoenix Nights » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 09:17

Robin wrote:quoted me happy at just £666 just to get my business.
:devil: :devil: :devil:
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Phoenix Nights
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Post by Phoenix Nights » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 09:18

On a more serious note, many congrats to Alfie on the new arrival ;)

I can certainly relate to the sentiments expressed in the story too.

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Robin
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Post by Robin » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 09:45

Phoenix Nights wrote:
Robin wrote:quoted me happy at just £666 just to get my business.
:devil: :devil: :devil:
Blimey..... & I was wondering if my OBL remark was a too sinister :lol:

RussJ
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Post by RussJ » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 09:50

Well done mate, looks fantastic.
have you seen this site?
Lots of Imola Red bling!
May soon be joining you in the S54 club..
http://www.geocities.com/jarruda/

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JAY
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Post by JAY » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 11:00

RussJ wrote: May soon be joining you in the S54 club
More info Purrrlleeeeeazzzzzzze.

What have you decided on Russ
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BimBeema
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Post by BimBeema » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 11:13

Congrats. Looks absolutley stunning!
Mods:
ECU Remap - Chipped UK
Angel Lights - Chromeline Design
E-Tech Strut Bar
///M Polished Aluminium Pedal Set
///M Silver Oil Filler Cap
Boot Spoiler
BMW Hardtop
BMW Chrome Tyre Valve Caps
Sony Headunit
BMW Williams F1 Tax Disc Holder

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Alfie
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  M roadster S54
Location: Broadchurch....

Too kind!

Post by Alfie » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 12:39

Thanks everyone!
You're all fart oo nice.
:D

I've added a few more pics if you'd care to pan upwards.

Sorry Chris, I forgot to take some with the lid up.
Never a priority for me!
Next time, I promise!
AussieZ3 wrote:Is it 01, or 02??
Built date Feb 01.
First registered in UK August 01.
AussieZ3 wrote:ACS don't make the hoops anymore, so get them from Alumex.
Already got the pukka ACS polished steel ones on my Topaz, so I intend to swap them over unless someone makes me an offer I can't refuse....
AussieZ3 wrote:lucky getting the cruise!
Not something I've ever had before, or really need. I can understand why it's so important for you though!
stu wrote:I'm sure it won't be long before we see 'Milly' out on a dawn raid!
I sure hope not!
'Milly'.....Hmmmm....I'll think about that.
Any other inspiration?
Robin wrote:Do get a front strong strut. Well worth it. Tighter turn in & less bump shudder.
Already have one on the Topaz, so I'm well aware of their benefits. Again, I intended to swap it over, but Admiral have said NO!

Cheers!
A.
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c_w
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Post by c_w » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 13:07

I've got cruise on my Coupe, its one of the best options to have IMO, makes motorway driving much better on longer journeys and can help fuel economy when you're in no particualrly rush.

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exdos
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Post by exdos » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 13:09

Alfie,

If you're having trouble with your insurers and mods, then try Adrian Flux. I came across this company last year when I suggested that this forum might be able to negotiate a group specail deal.

I've just transferred this year's insurance for my MC to Flux and I've done £5k of mods and they're all covered on a like-for like basis £438 including protected no claims and legal cover :P 8-) I've saved myself more than 25% on my last insurance which would insure my moddded car but the cover didn't extend to the mods!

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stu
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Location: On the edge!

Post by stu » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 13:16

Bloke wrote:
stu wrote:


May soon be realising a little pipe dream of my own too!

So come on Stu, whats that all about?


Bloke


pps Garyw, no you dont have to drill to fit the Z8 washer Jets, well not on a 2.0 ltr 2000 they fit in as astandard, with the fitting kit
Gonna tease you all, Like ALF 1E did for far too long with 'Millicent'.

I'll start a 'guess what I've got' thread, but suffice it to say, I'll have to be posting on other 'specialist car' related forums fairly soon.
someone in a minority once wrote:I know I'm in a minority
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///M_aniac
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Post by ///M_aniac » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 13:57

Nicely done, Alfie. Well worth the wait I'd say. Looks terrific. :P
BMW Z3, the only way to build a true roadster

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With an M??


The World's gone mad :D
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SledgeHammer
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Post by SledgeHammer » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 14:30

My favorite color AND engine. :oops: It's a beauty, congrats!!! :D

BartS
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Post by BartS » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 14:42

I'll start a 'guess what I've got' thread, but suffice it to say, I'll have to be posting on other 'specialist car' related forums fairly soon.[/quote]


we all do read piston heads mate you may as well spill the beans....
Bart

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ChrisXL
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Post by ChrisXL » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 15:11

SledgeHammer wrote:My favorite color AND engine. :oops: It's a beauty, congrats!!! :D

It is Red, Sledge :twisted:
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ChrisXL
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Re: Too kind!

Post by ChrisXL » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 16:22

Alfie wrote: Sorry Chris, I forgot to take some with the lid up.
Never a priority for me!
Next time, I promise!
Shame........ I bet she looks stunning with the Imola top too :wink:
One of a kind Imola-Imola conbination
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El Tel
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Post by El Tel » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 16:33

The Lady in Red. Congratulations Alfie she's a beaut!

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ChrisXL
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Post by ChrisXL » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 16:56

Still a new Red Beast family member :twisted:
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SledgeHammer
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Post by SledgeHammer » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 17:01

ChrisXL wrote:
SledgeHammer wrote:My favorite color AND engine. :oops: It's a beauty, congrats!!! :D

It is Red, Sledge :twisted:
U can't compare red with imHolYa. :lol:

estocks
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Post by estocks » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 17:08

Wow what a car.


You may find this item interesting.
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Orginal-BMW-Z3-Ha ... dZViewItem
Image
Use the Search button before posting newbie questions about hard tops and fitting kits, footwell speaker amps, water in the boot, hood maintainance and those horrific angel eyes. We get like 10 threads a week on the same subject, it's obvious that you haven't searched.

Phil
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Post by Phil » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 17:36

Looks stunning and the interior looks identical to ours which is the first I've seen other than ours.
Enjoy
Sapphire black/Imola red and black interior/ red roof/ S54 - the only RHD one made.

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Giles
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Post by Giles » Thu 02 Feb, 2006 20:16

Nice one Alfie - your patience paid off :D

(Stu phone me, you git!)

greg_ch
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Post by greg_ch » Fri 03 Feb, 2006 09:40

Well done, it's obviously been a labour of love. It's just a shame you can't come to Switzerland this summer and 'test' it in the mountains.

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Alfie
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Post by Alfie » Fri 03 Feb, 2006 10:22

greg_ch wrote:It's just a shame you can't come to Switzerland this summer and 'test' it in the mountains.
:bawl: :bawl: :bawl:

A.
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garyw
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Post by garyw » Fri 03 Feb, 2006 11:47

how about Wales....?

garyw

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calbens
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Post by calbens » Fri 03 Feb, 2006 17:50

Congratulations Alfie, the Red Devil is a stunner!

Now when do i get to test drive it.............

:roflmao: :roflmao: :roflmao: :roflmao:

It's still not as nice as mine tho :wink: ........ :mrgreen:

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Big Mr P
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Post by Big Mr P » Fri 03 Feb, 2006 18:39

Well done Alfie and welcome to the Imolla club.
see you on a cruise soon I hope.
Graham,
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Something for the weekend!!!

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Kipper
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Post by Kipper » Fri 03 Feb, 2006 18:47

Hi Alfie,
Love the car, I'm gonna regret asking this. I also have a 3 litre, of course would have preferred an M but couldn't convince my wife.

How do they compare back to back. Is the performance difference huge also how different is the cars character.

Finally what wax do you use - she looks amazing.

321bhp
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hi

Post by 321bhp » Fri 03 Feb, 2006 18:53

even though i love my cosmic black,with red/black interior,i think the imola red with red/black inside is the best ever put on any z3 z3m 10/10 a beautiful car :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

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  Z3 roadster 1.8 TU
Location: Hann. Münden

Alumex rollbars

Post by Falk23 » Fri 03 Feb, 2006 19:09

Hello Alfie,
I hope you dont mind if we (ALUMEX) add your pics in our satisfied customers
Z3 webgalery?
http://www.alumex.de/galery/galery.htm

Sure better would be if you send us some...

Falk

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AussieZ3
Joined: Mon 21 Mar, 2005 05:05
Posts: 288

  M roadster S54
Location: Perth

Post by AussieZ3 » Sat 04 Feb, 2006 00:36

Hi Falk,
Marc here, you sent me a set of your hoops over here in australia.
I have now fitted them, and will be happy to send you a photo.

Cheers

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Marvellous
Joined: Sat 15 Oct, 2005 18:10
Posts: 274

  Z3 roadster 2.2i
Location: Saddleworth

Post by Marvellous » Sat 04 Feb, 2006 00:52

Fantastic Alfie, makes me want to make the step!!! But her in doors might not me so keen!!
Z3 2.2 Sport - Honda XR400R.
Image

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Alfie
Z Register member
Joined: Thu 29 Apr, 2004 15:28
Posts: 3306

  M roadster S54
Location: Broadchurch....

Re: hi

Post by Alfie » Sat 04 Feb, 2006 01:33

321bhp wrote:even though i love my cosmic black,with red/black interior,i think the imola red with red/black inside is the best ever put on any z3 z3m 10/10 a beautiful car :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
Thats's a really big complement.
Genuinely, thankyou.

A.
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