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LC60348 - Part 1: Introduction

It’s my pleasure to introduce the third M Coupe Buyer’s Guide Project Coupe!  

We came across this 1999 Arctic Silver over Dark Gray coupe for sale in Fullerton, CA not long after our last project coupe was sold. There weren’t many pictures in the craigslist ad (7), but from what we could tell it was in good condition. We ran a Carfax on the coupe, showing it started it’s life in Pennsylvania and was sold in 2010 to it’s 2nd owner in SoCal and quickly made it over to it’s 3rd owner in 2012 (the seller). It also only had 53k miles.


Market Update - February 14, 2014

This week’s overview of what’s happened in the M Coupe market. February 14, 2014.

Currently Listed: 36 Average Asking Price: $24,677.03
S52: 29 S52: $21,016.72
S54: 7 S54: $37,749.57

Emancipated Navigators

Rupert was one of those couple visionaries who special ordered his S52 in steel gray before the color became officially available. I especially like seeing the color with hypersilver roadstar wheels and the S52 flat ///M badge. Here's his story:

On January 6, 1999 I attended the Los Angeles Auto Show and was about to become an “Emancipated Navigator.”  I had no idea what that was, an honestly, I still don’t.  My very first BMW automobile was responsible, and here is the story.


Helplessly in the Grip

Henry is able to put into words what so many of us feel about our coupes.

Okay, is anyone else as helplessly in the grip of this car as I am?

I found mine a little over a year ago and I am just goofy stupid in its thrall. I do this kind of thing on Saturday mornings:


LC60291 - Part 5: Conclusion

1999 BMW M Coupe in Arctic Silver over BlackFortunately, the delay in this conclusion article was not due to anything besides my own busyness. The new OEM Sachs clutch kit arrived safely to Alex’s and was installed without any significant issues. Alex got the coupe back to me, and it drives like a dream. I’m a little jealous of the nice, crisp shift feel after the shift pin service.


LC60291 - Part 4: The Mechanicals

1999 BMW M Coupe in Arctic Silver over BlackNow that the coupe looked brand new, it was time to make the drive match the looks. Step #1: shift pins. I knew I was completely out of my mechanical depth with that particular project even with Vinci's awesome DIY. I contacted another local coupe owner, Alex (the up and coming "Randy Forbes" of Colorado :-)). I knew he had done the shift pin service at least once before, and he also happened to still have the drift tools.


LC60291 - Part 3: The Detail

1999 BMW M Coupe in Arctic Silver over BlackA couple days later, Colby returned with his detailing/polishing gear. We were fortunate to catch a break in the rain to give it a good wash both outside and in the engine bay. When I attempted to remove the stoneguards from the rear fenders, they started to disintegrate. They had bonded to the paint and could only be removed in pieces. So, public service announcement, remove and wash your stoneguards with ever wash.


LC60291 - Part 2: First Impressions

1999 BMW M Coupe in Arctic Silver over BlackIt was dark, but the first things I noticed were the blacked out kidney grilles and rear fender stone guards. There were also new-ish silver lug bolts. Squinting through the tinted driver side window, I spot aluminum ///M logo pedals along with the factory ///M floor mats. Oh yeah, and window tint including the top 3rd of the windshield. Windshield tint may be worth it in Florida, but it would not survive long at my house.


LC60291 - Part 1: Introduction

1999 BMW M Coupe in Arctic Silver over BlackMaintaining this website, I obviously come across a lot of coupes. Most of the time I can just admire them from afar, but this time things worked out differently. For quite some time Rick Medeiros on the east coast, Mark Rand on the west coast, and I, here in Colorado, have thrown around the idea of buying a coupe with potential, helping said coupe realize it's potential, then finding a deserving owner to take it from there and enjoy it.


All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go

This was the first year since I bought my coupe that it did not work out to go to Dorkfest. Leaving my wife with a 5 year-old, 3 year-old, and 4 month-old to go be dorky just didn’t seem very thoughtful. I was also unable to come up with an economical way to get us all out to California either. What’s a guy to do?


LK60219 - Like Son, Like Father

I can honestly say my dad has had more influence on my life than any other single person. A high school scholarship essay I wrote attesting to this even made it’s way into the appendix of a parenting book, so it feels good to have a little positive influence in return. I’m pleased to introduce the newest member of the Coupe Cartel, my father, Randy Martin.


A Fortuitous Encounter

A great coupe story from Jeff who will hopefully soon be joining the Cartel.

I think my interest in BMWs first began back when I was in middle school. One of my best friend's dad had one of the first E65 745Li cars in I believe Space Grey. About the same time I began spending a considerable amount of time over at their house I saw the 2004 cheesy action film "Taxi" which featured Jimmy Fallon and Queen Latifah in a souped up taxicab chasing an AC Schnitzered up 760Li being driven through the streets of NYC by Brazilian Victoria's Secret models. Though the girls of course were a hit with everyone, I was the only one out of all of my friends who was more interested in the V12 Bimmer than the mental taxi.​


"It's about the car, not me"

Another great coupe story from Chris, who was one of the first people I talked to looking for a coupe after starting my site. I’m glad your long search finally paid off. I know exactly how you feel.

It’s a strange obsession, this car. In pictures it may not look like much, but seeing one in person is something else... The roofline is about as high as the wheels on a transport truck, the gas cap…so low you need to go down on one knee when filling up, the front of the car is long and low like a cruise missile, and the back end is completely savage… yet so inexplicably compelling that it almost hurts to look away from it. Whats best about those dramatic looks was how unintentional they were….much of the cars appearance was merely a consequence of necessity, cost effectiveness, and ice cold engineering.


Chasing Unicorns - The Z3 M Coupe

Neil recently purchased this coupe, but his coupe history is pretty epic. Read about it below. Thanks for sharing Neil and welcome (back) to the Coupe Cartel!

It's the tiniest of memories, but it's still there. Mum and Dad sitting up in bed on holiday in the North of Scotland, still in PJ's, eating bowls of cereal, unraveling The Sunday Times. It's a big newspaper, The Sunday Times, but my dad and I fought over only one small section - Motoring.  Somehow it seemed like the paper always got folded in a different order…that, or we just were not smart enough to predict it.  I was unfolding section after section and probably got stuck with something worthless like The Style (I had none of that at all, that’s for sure).  My dad found it first, but instead of a victorious snort, a puzzled look came over his face. "Humphh… well then, what do we think THIS is? How do you like that, Sue? That looks like the golf clubs might even fit"” he said as he thrust an ad on the front page in front of her.


"Best Product We Ever Made"

I get to hear lots of good coupe stories, so I thought I would start posting them in a new category. This first one is from Maurice who is currently looking to purchase back his original coupe.

When the car was about 6 months old, I drove it from Houston to Spartanburg (I went to college in Spartanburg and make the trip back frequently).  I was working for BMW in Houston at the time and stopped in Atlanta at the southern region headquarters to have lunch with some of the regional managers. 


My Coupe / 18

I bought my first 1:18 scale model car way back in 3rd grade. Since then my collection has grown quite a bit including several dealer edition M Coupes. It has always felt like something was missing though. I have found that the problem of having a rare color combination is that model companies will never build one like yours. I was very aware that I did not possess the skills to get it done. Thus began a long search for a 1:18 scale steel gray over imola red M Coupe.


S54 M Coupe vs Cadillac XLR-V, S54 M Roadster

Scott and Vicki are fortunate enough to own an 2001 M Coupe, a 2001 M Roadster, and a 2006 Cadillac XLR-V which is a little bit of both. Here’s how they think they compare.

This article is not technically a "Roadster Comparison" but we still thought that readers would find it interesting. What is our impression after living with both the S54 Coupe and Roadster? How do they compare to the Cadillac XLR-V which is both a roadster and a coupe as it has a retractable hardtop that offers structural support?


Future M Coupe Collectability

A special article from guest author, and new M Coupe owner, Cameron Lynch:

As a big fan of American muscle cars since I was a kid…and spent my high school years driving around with friends in classic 60’s Dodge Chargers and Pontiac Firebirds.  I’ve been amazed at the price inflation that we’ve seen on many of the most iconic examples of Detroit performance before the EPA and gas crunch of the 1970s.  These cars were iconic, and the most valuable were built in limited numbers.  It is interesting to compare the production numbers of some of the rarest and most valuable muscle cars against those of the BMW Z3 M Coupe.


Small Scale Fun

Majorette BMW M Coupe in SilverA new coupe model was added to my collection today but not for display. One of my 4 year-old’s favorite activities is playing cars (I started him very young) :). In order to join in, I need to make sure I maintain a respectable fleet of Hotwheels. Hence my long search for an M Coupe to add to my 1:64 scale garage. As Hotwheels, Matchbox, nor any other U.S. brand of toy cars makes an M Coupe, I had to look elsewhere. I eventually discovered the brand Majorette in France.


The Keyless Remote Dance (Step-by-Step)

To give a little background, each remote has a unique identification code that you need for your security system to recognize. The goal of the following process is to get your security system into learning mode, so that you can register your new remote’s ID. On a side note, if you lose one of your remotes, you can also use this process to delete it’s ID from your system so that it can never be used again (without reprogramming).


M Coupe Paintings

BMW M Coupe PaintingAlmost exactly two years ago, "2000mkoop" on Bimmerforums had a very talented friend of his, and College for Creative Studies graduate, create a painting of his M Coupe. As you could probably guess from the fanatical nature of the M Coupe community, everyone else wanted one too. His friend eventually opened an Ebay store where he sold paintings of many cars including the M Coupe. Eventually there were 5 different M Coupe paintings available.


Upgrading Your Auto Dimming Rearview Mirror

One of the weak spots of the M Coupes and Roadsters (as well as some M3s) is undoubtedly their auto dimming rear view mirrors. No one knows the exact cause of the issue as it can occur at any age or mileage of vehicle, but most problems seem to occur following long term sun exposure. The dimming fluid within the mirror can start to bubble giving you a two-tone rearview mirror that is always halfway dim. This is the state I found my mirror in when my coupe arrived.


S54 M Coupe vs Aston Martin V8 Vantage, Acura NSX

Bill Phillips is fortunate to have owned three of my all time favorite cars (he’s a man of good taste). Here’s how his S54 M Coupe compared to his 2006 Aston Martin V8 and 1992 Acura NSX:

I sold my Cosmos Black S54 powered M Coupe in 2009 after 2 years of stewardship. I have been blessed with the ability to own this car, a 1992 NSX (since 1995) and a 2006 V8 Vantage (since new) simultaneously.


Picking an M Coupe Car Cover

BMW M Coupe Indoor Car CoverAs you know from my recent Winterization article, I’ve been preparing my coupe for the long winter. Obviously the best protection is a garage, but even inside there are a lot of things that can hurt your baby. One of the most important parts of protecting your M Coupe while parked is a quality car cover. It will protect your coupe from dust, dings (important to me with two little kids), and moisture build-up.


Winterizing Your Coupe

I haven’t driven my coupe in almost 3 weeks. Winter is here in Colorado, and there has been snow on or near my favorite roads the past few weeks. While I don’t plan on parking it until spring, I know my opportunities for a good drive this winter will be few and far between. Therefore, I’ve been doing quite a bit of research on how best to winterize my coupe. Here are some of the winter storage tips I’ve come across.



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Car Enthusiast Guides
Jon Martin
Fort Collins, CO