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Thread: Looking to buy and rebuild a totaled 03 Alpina

  1. #1
    Z8 Novice
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    Looking to buy and rebuild a totaled 03 Alpina

    I know how much you guys hate seeing these cars damaged (I read a few threads), but I love these cars and always have. Now here is my dilemma. The car that i am looking at is a Black 2003 Alpina. Its missing the pass side door probably due to the accident. The door sill there is bent in a bit but in all honesty, its not bad. I had a professional BMW body shop look at the pictures and he said its only crushed about 2 inches.
    Now the main problem that I am facing is that its missing the drivers side rear fender / quarter panel. The tail lights are intact and so is the trunk but there is no latch for the door to close. I can get pics of it on here but I have to know if I am allowed to post them or not. The same body guy said that it doesnt look to be damaged at all underneath the fender, that it was just removed.

    Now my question to you is how much do you think this car is worth right now? The current bid is at $30,000 and I know that these are worth $140,000 with a CLEAN title. With a rebuilt title, I'm sure 20-30% of the value is gone. Cost to repair will be about $40-50,000 from what I was told.

    What do you guys think I should offer for the car?

    Thanks for your help.

    Art

  2. #2
    It is a bit of a moving target in this economy, but if a total rebuild to mint is 50k then I wouldn't offer more than 50k to buy.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  3. #3
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Due to the tedious nature of aluminum repairs and the Z8 frame in particular, I'd be very cautious assessing the value of a car that has been in some sort of collision. Repairs at any facility other than one of the three BMW Aluminum Repair Centers in the US would not due. Quite simply, your average BMW service person is just not qualified to assess the status of the Z8 frame post damage. So, unless you have the BMW ARC give the okay, I think your 20% - 30% discount is a bit optimistic.
    thegunguy

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by thegunguy View Post
    Due to the tedious nature of aluminum repairs and the Z8 frame in particular, I'd be very cautious assessing the value of a car that has been in some sort of collision. Repairs at any facility other than one of the three BMW Aluminum Repair Centers in the US would simply not due. Quite simply, your average BMW service person is just not qualified to assess the status of the Z8 frame post damage. So, unless you have the BMW ARC give the okay, I think your 20% - 30% discount is a bit optimistic.
    Alright, in that case, where can I find the contact info of these places?

  5. #5
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Probably the easiest way to get an accurate assessment is to have a BMW Field Engineer inspect the car. You can attempt to do this through a dealer or by contacting BMW NA directly.
    thegunguy

  6. #6
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    If I win the auction and acquire this car, then I'll have it inspected by a few people and eventually, now that I know, be transported to one of those centers..

    Just out of curiosity, would you know if one of these centers is located near the NY area?

  7. #7
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    I believe the main ARC is near the BMW NA HQ in NJ.

    Don't get me wrong, you're welcome to have repairs done elsewhere if you're looking to do a budget build, but if you ever plan to resell, an ARC repair will hold a higher value.
    thegunguy

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by thegunguy View Post
    I believe the main ARC is near the BMW NA HQ in NJ.

    Don't get me wrong, you're welcome to have repairs done elsewhere if you're looking to do a budget build, but if you ever plan to resell, an ARC repair will hold a higher value.
    Even better news for me it probably being in NJ.
    I honestly believe that if I win this car, then I'll be keeping it for a long time.. But knowing that the vehicle was properly rebuilt is just that much more peace of mind.

    Thanks, gun, for the info. I'm an armature with these cars and am still learning.

  9. #9
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    If the frame has damage, you could easily be looking at $80,000, not including the other fixes....so, if you "win" it for 50k, fix the frame for 80k and the other stuff for 50k, that's 180k for a rebuilt car. Seems like a big risk. Have the car checked by a field tech BEFORE you own the car.

  10. #10
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Agreed. Because aluminum just can't be bent back like steel, any frame damage on the Z8 pretty much means new sub frames or worse.

    Don?t buy before you know.
    thegunguy

  11. #11
    in Coral Gables, Florida DirkZ8's Avatar
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    Buy the best you can afford.
    Dirk

    Alpina #142
    www.bmwccca.com

  12. #12
    Ditto that, while it may seem illogical, it is the best advice.

    I made the mistake of buying a beaten up, unloved, off lease Z8 for $70k a few years back. She was affectionately known as 'the beater' and I planned to restore, paint and trick her out to be my ultimate Z8. Two months later during a visit from the Z8 Club president I learnt that on top of all the little, but costly cosmetic issues, she also had the distorted shock tower crowns and upper frame rails that have become know as 'the frame issue'.

    In her rundown, unloved state she perfectly illustrated that these cars need to be owned by careful, caring drivers. Aluminum is a softer and less pliable than steel, and doesn't like hard knocks at all, thus the Z8/Alpina is a car that really doesn't do well in the hands of the clumsy or the careless.

    Anyway, the total cost of making her perfect would have been over $140, more than double what I paid for her, so she went right back to the dealer, and was traded in for a daily driver. Funnily enough I saw her again on EBay briefly last year, she sold for over $80k looking just as tatty as when I last saw her!
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.