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Thread: Buying a Z8 FAQ & For Sale section guidelines...

  1. #1

    Exclamation Buying a Z8 FAQ & For Sale section guidelines...

    This is the Go To thread for PRIVATE INDIVIDUALS buying a Z8.

    It is open for dealers and motor industry professionals as a FOR SALE resource only.


    If you are considering buying a Z8 I absolutely recommend either you check the car yourself using the list in the following post, or alternately I can check and certify it for you. I am based in LA, but will travel to inspect so long as my expenses are covered along with the inspection fee. My service will give you a photographic report of the car you are considering, covering all points of its condition with special attention given to all the known areas of concern.





    To place an ad selling a car here please follow these simple guidelines -

    1. Use this formatting for your car's info in the Title section -
    2001 Z8 (#60884) Topaz Blue - For Sale

    2. Make sure to list anything that may help your sale, like is the PP fitted, do you have "The Book", and all the covers and bits that were in the trunk with the car.

    3. I suggest add at least 3 pictures of the car.

    4. Don't forget to post when your sale is completed.

    5. If your post sits on the board for a long time, and you don't answer my final "Did you sell your car yet?" question, it will be marked as sold.
    Andrew Macpherson

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

  2. #2
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    Question Buying a Z8 FAQ

    For any new potential owners this is the definitive list of items to look for and the questions to ask that will help you get a car that can be delivered as built and story free. My lessons learned, and they were in the not too hard way, were the missing windscreen ($1000), and the phone console button was broken ($1200 to repair). Optional costs were related to having a Performance Package kit installed (new tires and kit cost $5000). So to make my car complete, with one upgrade to prevent extremely costly repairs, cost an additional $7200 to make it complete.

    FRAME / CHASSIS:
    Check for shock tower deformation.
    Verify if a Performance Package has been installed.
    Verify if tires are OEM runflats or new tires installed (Michelin PS2's are preferred by Z8 owners on this site)
    Check front dam/spoiler for damage.
    Check hood underliner for damage (cuts, wears, and all push pins).
    Check firewall liner for damage.
    Check wheels for damage - chips, bent, or curb rash.
    Get underneath the car - check for damage to rocker panels, cables, and lines.

    ENGINE / DRIVETRAIN:
    Check receipts for regular fluid flushes even on low mileage cars.
    Get all maintenance documentation,
    Verify maintenance stamps in owners manual up to date.
    Check service records for VANOS issue fix on cars # 60000 > 60800. More VANOS info here.
    Check the radiator for dirt accumulation.
    Have your dealer check the MAF's.
    The Z8 is a battery eater, make sure you have a fresh battery if possible, and keep it trickle charged.
    Check battery compartment for 90 degree vent through the underneath ($3 part from dealer)

    INTERIOR / EXTERIOR:
    Interior/Exterior color combinations raise rarity factor further, but only 5703 ever made and only half that made it to the U.S.
    Trim Types - Z8 and Alpina (2002/3 automatic only - 555 made)
    Check to see if all body panels have VIN stickers.
    Check body seams for conformity and black plastic strip inserted.
    Check for dashboard delamination.
    Check soft top condition, pay special attention to the strings, the canvas above doors and the rear window.
    Check that you get the hard top plastic vent covers (2) for inside the shell when installed are present.
    Check hard top tips for damaged.
    Check hard top protective mounting caps (plastic bobs) are available when top uninstalled.
    Check that all latches in cockpit work (behind seats, console, glove box and hidden radio, cigarette lighter, and cigarette holder)
    Verify if original (BMW logo bottom left hand corner) windshield installed (original with driver side sticker) or OEM replacement. After-market windshields can be prone to cracking.
    Check that the radio is working correctly, the OEM unit is prone to problems.
    Check heated seats.
    Check that seat backs are correctly attached, the top clips are prone to becoming unglued (see fix in Problems/Solution forum).
    Check air conditioning.
    Check all lights working (costly taillights and turn signals)
    Check for unfogged rearview mirror.
    Check for unfogged or chipped headlamps (see any spiderwebs beware) and working washers.
    Check the paint with a paint meter if possible.

    ANCILLARIES:
    Verify you have all 4 keys (2 regular, 1 valet (Light Grey with Metal), 1 emergency key (Black Plastic Wallet)
    Check for original BMW cell phone - Motorola CPT 7000 & Timeport 8767 were both used, home charger is a plus.
    Check for OEM flashlight behind driver's seat is installed.
    Check for navigation CDs (six pack disc holder) and navigation CD packaging for 2000>2002 cars, or DVD's on '03 cars.
    Get the factory Z8 leather key case/fob
    Verify that you have all books & documentation, (VIN plated coffee table book with box, sample interior leather and Polaroid, owners manual, window stickers, Z8 leather glovebox booklet with owner's manual, the original BMW VIN stamped Roadside Assistance Card, front license plate)
    Verify that you have all the trunk components (first aid kit, windscreen/bag, softboot/bag, toolkit (all tools and gloves), battery trickle charger and cup holder. There is no emergency reflector in US Zs (lead based - restricted import item)
    Check for hardtop storage cover.
    Check for hardtop storage rack - with original box is better.

    QUESTIONS TO ASK:
    Get it inspected by a BMW dealer (saved me the trouble of getting a new rearview mirror)
    Get a CarFax Report - but don't rely on it, many cars get repaired without it showing up on these reports.


    Ask the specific questions -
    • Has the car ever been wrecked or repaired?
    • Has the car been flood damaged?
    • When was the last fluid change conducted?
    • Is the car a US made Z8 or gray market (non US specs)?
    CA window tinting will fail a MD auto inspection
    Try to make sure the car was never a lease or fleet (DE - driver's experience VIN 60010 - 30) car, unless the price reflects it.

    Essential set of downloadable info on the cars here.

    As a rather sad footnote please be aware that the internet is awash with illegal and dishonest scams, as this post well illustrates. Do not buy a car unless you can see all the legal paperwork. Never buy anything sight unseen, either you or someone you trust must do a visual inspection of the car, and remember if something sounds too good to be true, you can be sure that it is!

    And don't be afraid to ask us for advise - Happy motoring in the world's best roadster. An experience based on nostalgia and tuned with technology - the best ever made and that is before the tuner parts are added (See post)!
    Last edited by macfly; January 27th 2009 at 22:46.
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  3. #3
    Great post, made it sticky and added some live links, and also combined it with the For Sale section guidelines.

    Lets make this the 'go to' post for new buyers, and add our shared knowledge to it.
    Andrew Macpherson

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

  4. #4
    Team Z8 KenZ8's Avatar
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    great list

    but you got me on the "emergency key"? I know that the emergency key for a Ferrari is the one that operates the flatbed , but I have not heard of one for the Z8.

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    The emergency key I got was a small black plastic wallet key that will unlock the doors, and I actually got the original 'red turtle case' for the keys.

    I haven't tried to start the car with it.
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  6. #6
    Team Z8 jawz's Avatar
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    I can vouch for the fact you should've received a black plastic "emergency" key. One came with my car, too. Although I haven't tried it yet, I still have it accessible just in case.

  7. #7
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    I don't think I've ever seen a Valet key for these cars.
    Usually the two main button keys, and the one little plastic key.
    Am I wrong on this?

    Great list BTW.


    Gar

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    The 'valet key' is a light grey with a metal key insert, the 'emergency key' is a black plastic wallet key.
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  9. #9
    Z8 Madness
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    I've had two Z8s and both of them only had the two keys + the plastic

  10. #10
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    I've seen those keys for 740's and M5's, etc. . . I've just never seen one for any of the Z8's.

    I'll have a look again at what we've got for the cars.


    Gar

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    Well there is at least one Z out there with this key I have it for 0037
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  12. #12
    Team Z8 jawz's Avatar
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    There should be a total of 4 keys: The 2 normal ones, the valet key and the black plastic emergency key.
    The valet key will "lock out" the glove compartment, the center console and trunk so the valets don't have access to those areas. However, it also forces them to try to find the door lock since it doesn't have a remote button. Take it from me, it behooves one to explain the whereabouts of the door key lock since that's the only way they can lock and unlock the doors to bring your car back. Works great!!

  13. #13
    Z8 Madness
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    You guys are correct.

    According to the Manual (Page 30), there should be a total of 4 keys.

    Now I have to go search for my missing key (Keys found )

  14. #14
    Team Z8 riverflyer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenZ8 View Post
    but you got me on the "emergency key"? I know that the emergency key for a Ferrari is the one that operates the flatbed , but I have not heard of one for the Z8.
    Oh, thats what that key is for!

  15. #15
    Team Z8 riverflyer's Avatar
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    Brian, great post. Wish I had read it before buying!
    Luckily, my seller, Mike M. is a prince of a guy and a very caring owner and he made sure every last item was accounted for and more.
    Great cars, eh?

    I often find it takes a bit of money to make any older car right after purchase so dont feel too bad.

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    Thanks, I think it is a helpful post, and short of the 'upgrades' the only gotcha was the cell phone console latch that set me back $1200 to repair. That type of repair wasn't in the BMW repair guide so it was T&M and I ended up paying for the mechanic to learn about the Z8 console. But the car is 100% now and it is a 'GREATTTTTT' car, best roadster ever made in my opinion. It has looks, appeal, power, handling, style, and uniqueness all rolled into one.
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  17. #17
    Team Z8 riverflyer's Avatar
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    "It has looks, appeal, power, handling, style, and uniqueness all rolled into one."

    Aint that the truth.

  18. #18
    Brain I reformatted the list a bit, and added more links to it - thanks so much, it is a really great addition to the site, and will be a boon for everyone looking to join our 'family'!

    If anyone has any other ideas of things to add pop them on here, and I'll put them into Brian's master list above.
    Andrew Macpherson

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

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    Thanks Andrew, that was a very good idea and added feature and it makes it easier to add new concerns or items or when looking for specifics.

    Starting to look like a real jet fighter checklist!
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  20. #20
    Sport Button On - DSC Off jpklecker's Avatar
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    Incidentally, the Motorala Timeport 8767 does still operate and function normally when using Sprint PCS as the provider. I know, as I still have and use this phone. I don't know about using other providers.
    John Klecker - 2002 Topaz / Crema (61782)

  21. #21
    Great tip - thanks!
    Andrew Macpherson

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

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    I also think that by law that all analog cell phones have to work for 911 if nothing else. But I don't know how far back this legacy compatibility function has to be applied to for existing cell phones.
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  23. #23
    Z8 Madness
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    On my 03, once the hard top is removed, there are two little plastic plugs that plug into the rear mounting holes. I do not have these on my 02. Something to look for.
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  24. #24
    Sport Button On - DSC Off jpklecker's Avatar
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    Anyone know where you can get these "plugs"; my 02 never came with them even though I'm the original owner.
    John Klecker - 2002 Topaz / Crema (61782)

  25. #25
    Sport Button On - DSC Off gutMD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpklecker View Post
    Anyone know where you can get these "plugs"; my 02 never came with them even though I'm the original owner.
    Ditto.
    mine makes 3 2002's without them.
    ---------------------------------
    Regards,
    Gary
    2002 Topaz // Crema

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    I ordered mine from the dealership. They cost either $14 or $38 dollars for the set, but I forgot which. When I am back home, I could look up the invoice.
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  27. #27
    Team Z8 jawz's Avatar
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    I had one of the plug "retainers" break and MY dealership couldn't find them while under warranty. Does anyone have a part number? Thanks.

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    Hard top plugs - Argghh, the ones I got from the dealer are the wrong plugs, thanks for the photo shot of the correct plugs. I guess I will try to find the right part number.
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  29. #29
    Z8 Madness
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    Couple more items to check:

    - Check the battery compartment. The battery has a vent port feeding into a 90 deg. connector, which feeds into a tube, which exits through the trunk floor to the outside. If the 90 deg. connector is missing, you can get it from the dealer for about $3.

    - Where most body panels come together, you should find a black plastic strip. If those are missing, you can obtain those from the dealer.
    2016 Porsche GTS/MT

  30. #30
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    ?? - I don't see these black plastic strips on my Z and I have checked the fenders, bumpers, and rocker panels. I do see sealer black strips on the doors, trunk, and hood - is that what you are referencing? If you have a picture of where these black plastic strips would be nice.
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  31. #31
    Z8 Madness
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    These are strips of rubber found in these areas (at least the ones I know about):
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    Thanks, and I found them. Funny that the rear rocker panel gap by the front of the rear wheel wouldn't have one.
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  33. #33

    Exclamation Buyer beware!

    Yesterday I heard a sad tale of a gentleman who bought a car sight unseen and shipped it back to Germany where it was found that the frame was completely distorted, and the entire car will have to be rebuilt, at a combined cost of double his purchase price! If he chooses to repair it'll be the first $300,000 Z8 since heady days of mad dealer mark ups in the summer of 2000 when the first cars arrived here in SoCal.

    If you are thinking of buying a Z8 or Alpina, or any other car that you cannot inspect yourself, then make sure that you get it inspected by an expert. I am happy to inspect any car that a buyer is interested in, and help you find anything that you are looking for. Contact me directly through the board, or email me.
    Andrew Macpherson

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

  34. #34
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    Great advice, Andrew. There is no such thing as too much protection.

    I have also found a couple of $40K Z8's on the internet-these are, to be kind, not owned by the sellers. One even lifted a picture from the Scottsdale dealership that DOES have the car.

    I sent warnings to AutoTrader on both ads.

  35. #35
    Sport Button On - DSC Off Lisa's Avatar
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    wonder if it would be interesting to find out the vin of cars that we know have problems and keep track of them - not necessarily publicly but just for our own reference

  36. #36
    We kind of do in this section, when something that is dodgy gets brought to my attention I add it in here with a red thumbs down.
    Andrew Macpherson

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

  37. #37
    Z8 Madness
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    Perhaps the German owner should buy one of the new Z8s instead of repairing the damaged one and keep the damaged one as a DD.

    If a car makes it past Marty's inspection, it is as good as it gets.
    2016 Porsche GTS/MT

  38. #38
    Sport Button On - DSC Off jim's Avatar
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    Wow, what a nightmare. So, hypothetically, could such a car be fixed & what value discount if any, would a car experience that was fixed at a certified BMW (1 of 3 in US) facility. They have frames yes?

  39. #39
    Yes, absolutely it could be fixed, but doing so would require complete frame off 'restoration'. The real issue is cost, and since this car is in Germany and the repairs will be done at/by BMW Classic Division I don't think it will negatively affect its long term value, but the owner will just have to wait a long, long time to get his money back!
    Andrew Macpherson

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

  40. #40
    I want to reiterate that the For Sale section of the site is open to anyone looking to sell a car, or any other associated Z8 memorabilia.

    It is not to be used as a general "Want To Buy" resource for dealers, brokers or other motor industry professionals. If you work in the industry you must connect to each seller directly and privately, and not use this forum as a general purpose "catch all".
    Andrew Macpherson

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