Collecting Cars

1986 BMW (E24) M635CSi

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This BMW M635CSi is a sound example of a classic 1980s performance car, finished in a restrained factory colour scheme, and in very good mechanical order. Under the bonnet is the 3.5-litre ‘M88’ straight-six – originally seen in the M1 supercar – producing around 282bhp, driving the rear wheels through a five-speed manual transmission. The odometer indicates 122,360 miles from new.

A compelling combination of sports car performance with a luxurious cabin, just 524 examples of the M635CSi were built in right-hand drive, and fewer than 100 are understood to remain on the road or under SORN - and this is one of those cars.

First registered in January 1987, there are six previous registered keepers on the log book. The present owner acquired the car nearly four years ago, and has kept the car well maintained using leading BMW specialists during that time.

The bodywork presents in good order, though given its age and an older respray, it is perhaps not surprising to find a few areas where rust is bubbling through - including on the front spoiler, both front wings, the rear valance, sunroof, and the base of the rear screen. These patches are shown in the photo gallery below.

Its metallic ‘Diamantschwarz’ paint is described as being in fair condition, with cracks in the finish on the front spoiler, rear valance and sunroof, stone chips to the front end, and some flaked paint around the driver’s door frame. Overall, the car presents as a very honest classic, and would benefit from some cosmetic refurbishment in due course.

All of the light lenses and body trims present in fair condition, with the odd chip or stress crack in the finish. It has also received an upgrade to high-intensity discharge headlamps. The car rides on 16-inch BBS alloys, which have a few minor blemishes but no kerbing grazes, and the original metric wheels are included in the sale. It also had a Brembo big brake conversion, which was installed by BMW specialist Classic Heroes in 2017.

Inside, the Pearl Beige leather upholstery wears its miles very well. There are no rips or tears in the seat covers, and only some minor cracks in the piping on the outer side bolsters. The seats were re-connolised in 2017 to freshen up their appearance. The steering wheel and gear knob appear to be original, and the door panels are in great shape. It is equipped with a period Blaupunkt Atlanta SQR 47 radio cassette deck, which has been upgraded with an aux-in line for MP3 player connectivity. The air-conditioning has been converted to R134a refrigerant.

Mechanically, this M635CSi is in very good order, having been cared for by numerous BMW specialists throughout its life - and in the last four years in particular. Its last scheduled maintenance was carried out in December 2019 at 122,085 miles, which consisted of an Inspection I service at Munich Legends. The engine oil and filter were changed, the spark plugs were renewed, the valve clearances were checked, the brake fluid was replenished. The throttle cable was also replaced, and it was given new coolant. Notes from this service indicated that the power steering drive belt and exhaust mounts are in need of replacement, and that there is a small leak from the radiator.

In May 2019, BMW specialist Classic Heroes replaced the fuel pump, washer pump, ignition coil, distributor cap, and DME relay at 122,070 miles. The same garage carried out the HID headlamp upgrade in late 2018, when it also repaired the wiring loom, fitted the period stereo, and carried out an oil service.

Other recent work has included new outer track rods ends, pitman arms, and an Inspection II service in October 2017; and a new clutch, fuel tank, and repairs to the turret mounts in December 2016. The engine timing chain was replaced in February 2011 at 111,355 miles by BMW specialist Roy Alexander, when the exhaust was also renewed.

The most recent MOT was on 14 December 2019 at 122,085 miles, when it achieved a first-time pass and no advisories whatsoever. The seller reports that the tyres are all in good condition, with approximately 7mm of tread on the front items and 6mm at the rear.

Accompanying the car is the original owner’s wallet, handbook and 1986 service directory. The stamped service book was lost by a BMW specialist, but fortunately the seller has scanned evidence of maintenance visits, shown in the photo gallery. Invoices for all work undertaken since 2005 are also present.

A number of magazines featuring general articles on the M635CSi model are included for interest, and there is also an original tool set in the boot that is missing only the 10/11mm box spanner. Finally, it has a Classic Additions indoor car cover with BMW logo, and an attachment for a battery conditioner.

This BMW M635CSi is a rare modern classic that is honestly presented, and benefits from much recent mechanical work to ensure it drives very smartly. With some obvious cosmetic jobs on the to-do list for the next owner, it should be a straightforward process to bring this car up to a superb standard. A consummate grand tourer with an impressive turn of pace, this elegant coupe is a great opportunity to acquire one of the earliest M-badged BMWs.

Factory options:

  • S301A Alarm system
  • S339A Shadow Line trim
  • S350A Thermal Insulated Glass
  • S401A Electric Sunroof
  • S415A Rear Sun Blind
  • S458A Electric Front Seats
  • S498A Rear Headrests
  • S530A Air-conditioning


Date - Garage - Work Undertaken - Mileage

05/01/1987 - Cronk Garages Ltd - First Registration - 0

23/03/1988 - BMW First Front Ltd - Inspection 1 - 12,853

23/11/1988 - BMW Holland Park - Annual Check - 15,912

04/10/1989 - BMW Cheyne - Oil Service - 22,882

05/12/1989 - BMW Cheyne - Annual Check - 24,266

02/08/1990 - BMW Cheyne - Inspection 2 - 29,784

22/01/1990 - Able Engineering - Oil Service - 32,001

12/11/1991 - Able Engineering - Inspection 2 - 39,328

04/11/1992 - Able Engineering - Oil Service - 47,706

02/07/1993 - Able Engineering - Oil Service - 54,741

14/10/1993 - Able Engineering - Inspection 1 - 57,049

23/08/1994 - Able Engineering - Oil Service - 64,288

06/06/1995 - Able Engineering - Inspection 1 - 70,656

04/12/1995 - Able Engineering - Oil Service - 74,580

29/05/1996 - Able Engineering - Inspection 1 - 

25/10/1997 - Able Engineering - Oil Service - 89,416

18/04/2000 - Able Engineering - Inspection 2 - 103,000

28/08/2003 - Able Engineering - MOT - 105,391

25/08/2004 - Able Engineering - MOT - 105,533

27/01/2005 - Central Motors Canterbury - Front Brakes - 105,916

19/04/2007 - Able Engineering - MOT - 106,075

27/10/2008 - Jesmond Garage - MOT - 110,821

12/06/2009 - Eastern Garage Essex - Oil Service, ECU & Brakes - 110,829

11/11/2009 - Able Engineering - MOT - 110,836

16/11/2010 - Roy Alexander - MOT - 111,347

Feb 2011 - Roy Alexander - Inspection 2, Timing Chain, Exhaust - 111,355

01/10/2013 - Roy Alexander - 113,004

17/06/2014 - Hillcrest Specialist Cars - Shock absorbers F & R - 113,913

17/09/2014 - BMW Cooper Reading - DME Relay & Fuel Pump - 115,449

18/09/2014 - Hillcrest Specialist Cars - MOT, Anti Roll bar bushes - 115,449

01/11/2015 - Owner - Inspection 1 - 118,835

16/06/2016 - TW Classics - Oil Service - 119,500

19/12/2016 - Classic Heroes - Full Inspection, Clutch, Gear Lever Bushes, Fuel Tank, various bodywork - 119,869

16/6/2017 - Classic Heroes - Big Brake Conversion - 120,719

13/10/2017 - Classic Heroes - Service (Oil Change) MOT - 121,379

1/11/2017 - Classic Heroes - Seat Refurbishment - 121,414

12/11/2018 - Classic Heroes - Major Service MOT - 121,951

10/12/2018 - Classic Heroes - HID Headlamps - 121,982


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