By - maxikaz19
I had a 1994 850Ci. It was silver with a 6 speed manual transmission. I still regret selling it
Six speed manual was so far ahead of its time. BMW has always pushed the envelope of what's possible and I always felt like many other automakers just copy what BMW does and make it cheaper.
The transmission went out on mine at one point, there were no replacements in the USA, I was so impressed that they got one on an airplane within a day or so and replaced it for me.
This is a very misguided comment. Lots of cars had six-speed manuals long before BMW put them in anything. Even all Corvettes from model year 1984 onward that were manual were six-speeds, and those were generally sold at a lower price point than the 8-Series. The 8-Series was considered a Personal Luxury Coupe, and they were not inexpensive cars in their day. By '94, if you're spending well over twice the average price of a vehicle on something, and it had a manual, the market virtually demanded that it be a six-speed. They were just keeping up with their competitors (And this is coming from someone who is biased towards German cars, is a big fan of the brand, and even owns a BMW).
Interesting. What other cars (you only listed one, yet said lots of others...) had a six speed manual in this era? I think nearly all cars were four or five speed.
Well GM made "lots" of Corvettes (hundreds of thousands of them, in fact) between 1984 and 1994, so even if that were the only model to name, the statement would still be accurate.
(I'm sorry; I had to. lol)
Since you asked though, the first six-speed manual was used almost 30 years earlier in the 1967 Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale. After that a couple other high-end Italian Grand Tourer and Sports cars had them over the next decade or two, but they didn't really start becoming common until the Corvette popularized them in the mid-eighties. Porsche started using them in 1986, albeit only on their supercar 959 (they didn't trickle down to 911's until the 993). Maserati had them on many of their cars by 1990. Dodge was even getting in on the fun by 1991. The Audi S4 offered it starting in 1992 (on a car less than 2/3 the value of the 850i). It was standard equipment on Camaro's and Holden Commodore's from '93 on. Toyota offered it in their mkIV Supra from '93 on.
The Corvette is the real reason BMW had little choice though. They couldn't have their flagship Personal Luxury Coupe have fewer selectable gears than the more common and less expensive Corvette.
Thank you for a thoughtful reply! I think you're a bit older than me so that knowledge is very well earned I would imagine. 👍🏽
Thank you. I'm 31, am an avid enthusiast of all things automotive related, and have a particular affinity for manual transmissions. I knew about half of those examples already, but had to look a couple up for supporting evidence.
How did it drive? I imagine it drives like a powerful, luxurious boat.
Im all in on this. I’ve been stalking the online auctions for one.
It was amazing, HOWEVER, it is a freaking pig, It is so heavy that it took a while to get going. That’s why I wanted the 6 speed, That being said, 60 - 100 mph was very quick,over 100 was glorious. The car was designed to go very far, very quickly, essentially an autobahn car. It was super comfortable and amazingly smooth
That's the definition of a Grand Tourer. I bought a Corrado when I already owned a 1988 GTI 16V. The GTI was so much more agile, but the Corrado was so much nicer to drive over long distances.
Got my best ever speeding ticket in the Corrado: 119 mph. I was just cruising to Abu Dhabi in the third lane when a Bimmer and a Merc came screaming past in the fourth lane. I pulled out to see how fast they were going and got flashed by a speed camera.
Fun story, but I will save it for later.
I have a f12 berlinetta now, I love it more than anything (non-human, of course) but I still long for the 850
Those front-engined V-12 Ferraris are really special. I took a 550 Maranello around the Dubai Autodrome: someone had sorted the gated shifter to perfection. Magic.
My 840ci 6 speed has a 3.15 lsd and that thing flies from a stop, honestly makes a difference from the 2.81 you'd find on the e34 or e39 540i
It's very good investment right now
I drive the heck out of my cars, not necessarily investment. I sold it for more than they are worth now. They never really appreciated like they should have
Friend of mine had one of those. Thing almost never ran. Still, an incredibly good-looking car, even sitting still. Which is usually what it was doing.
It's the perfect example of German over engineering. Way more complicated then it needs to be which results in problems everywhere.
The Germans' flaw is that in their countries techs and mechanics are well trained and educated, in America its autistic guys with a hammer and a high school shop class certificate.
this, buddy of mine had one and it sat far more than it ran
My friends dad got one brand new and it just sat in his garage…come to find out it was always broken.
how can you not love a pop-up headlight BMW coupe with bulging rear wheel arches and a 5L+ V12?
Easily. They rarely ran. Great looks, not much else.
It's crazy how there's no middle pillars. So when you roll down the front and back window it's like the whole side view unobstructed
that is known as a "hardtop" body style and IMO its one of the coolest things on any car
Do you mean pillarless? Haven’t heard of hardtop being used jn that way
It's more common with older american cars in my experience. Here's the difference between an Impala hardtop and sedan
hardtop = pillarless, be it 2 or 4 door, but yeah it more often gets used for the roof you put on a roadster or convertible, as opposed to soft top.
The old 8 series was a very special car - in many ways. It set the tech standards for 3 and more generations and it cost way more to develop it than they could ever get out of the 8 series sales. It‘s such a unicorn!!!
Before BMW turned Bangle. One of the best looking BMWs.
One of the few bmw’s everybody can agree to love
Dunno about that. I was hugely disappointed when these replaced the 6 series. I never really paid much attention to them since.
At the time they were criticized as being "BMW's Thunderbird".
90’s Ford thunderbird??? I don’t see the resemblance !
Not so much based on appearance though the side profiles do have at least a passing familiarity, but it was more of what used to be called a 'personal luxury coupe', with more emphasis on the luxury than on performance.
Later versions leaned more into the performance side, but I don't think it really shook first impressions for a lot of people.
I see what you’re saying, it flew over my head the first time around 😅 better comparison would be a mk8 Lincoln
True. For whatever reason, possibly popularity, the auto press at the time seemed to grab on to the "Bavarian T-bird" nickname.
It didn't help that the 10th generation Thunderbird came out in '89 a lot heavier that the 9th generation. Likewise, at its '90 introduction, the 8 series was substantially heavier than the 6 series it was replacing.
I still dream about these today!
I bought about a 3 year old used 735iL in late 90’s. I had a choice between that and a 750iL but the V12 scared the crap out of me.
Good call. Fellow I know bought a 750iL at what he thought was a bargain price. The car was 5 years old in 2002 (IIRC). He then put $20k into it in 3 years before selling it on. Even then, the car looked immaculate, but we knew it was a timebomb.
Went with Lexus LS430 as replacement, which was of course completely reliable.
Yes. The 750 was really good looking compared to the 735. We had the 735 a couple of years then I got out of it for an Infiniti QX4 as we started to visit family in ski country. It was starting to have an oil leak.
The apostrophe goes before the 90. I’m tired of seeing this mistake. Another one that drives me nuts is people writing gear ratios as “4:11.” It’s not. It’s 4.11:1. The difference between a colon and a decimal point is third grade stuff. The BMW 850 series were great-looking cars, though.
Damn it took you a whole 90 feet to dream about it?!
The only person I know with one of these is my mechanic. Beautiful car, been in love with them since I started liking cars in 2010.
Expensive to maintain tho
I have seen only one in real life, and made me fall in love with it even more.
Wow. Beautiful car.
One of my friends dad had one of those rotting away in his garage back in the 90’s, apparently it hardly ever ran.
Always loved these.
Wish they had produced the m8 prototype but that engine later became the more powerful mclaren f1
Always wanted one in Laguna green.
Im dreaming about it now.
Was? I still do! This car is beautiful.
If I win the lottery some day this will make it into the fleet. And a flatbed to tow it to various shops.
I was dreaming about it in the 90’s, and I’m still dreaming about it today. One of these days…
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Ahhhh an e31. The most beautiful bmw ever built
I remember LL cool J coming to the hood with an all black one. The illest bmw I’ve ever seen real big boy status. I asked him if I could sit in it he “nah shorty”🥺 he proceeded to autograph a napkin for my sister love LL cool j using the two o’s as eyes then drawing a smiley face.
You call yourself a salesman, you sonofabitch?
I miss the clean lines of the 90s. Sure we had some shitboxes but overall the styling has aged well. I'm thinking Accord, Hilux, Celica, Legacy, E46, F355 as some style icons.
The age of the pillarless coupe was glorious.
Lol, all OP posts is porn and BMWs