The Project M1 (the ‘Donor’ car)

The Werk Shop

28814 Nagel Ct., Unit B

Lake Bluff, IL 60044

(847) 295.3200 Telephone

(847) 615.9375 Fax



Why is this the ‘Donor’ car –and people did ask me this question– ?  It is because this M1 will, if everything goes according to plan, undergo a metamorphosis, it will change into a new and even better M1. For that reason this is a ‘donor’ and not just a car that is subject to restoration.

On Sunday, March 5 2006 she was delivered in the Chicago land area.

I had an opportunity to fully examine my ProjectM1 on Saturday (March 11th 2006) and my impression was that it is more of a true Project than I had imagined. The custom paint job is in rough shape and if I hadn’t planned for a new paint job I would certainly be planning for one by now. There seems to be a lot of rust in the fuel-tanks, reportedly a very common problem for M1s that sit still for too long. Brown muck is clearly visible underneath the oil filling cap. The front and rear bumper-covers were butchered as part of the ‘federalization’ process, robbing the car, in the eye of a discerning beholder, of some of it’s beautiful lines.

The good news is that the car is in good hands. Eventually, after spending enough time, effort and, of course, money she is going to be a stunning beauty.

It is a real shame that the original Campagnolo wheels are missing. I’ve been told that only the front wheels (less wide than the rear ones) are available from BMW. There is at least one private party in Germany that still has complete sets of NOS wheels available. I paid $1950 for a set including the original balancing weights, valves and center caps but excluding shipping.

I took the picture above of some of the instruments on Saturday (March 11th 2006), this 25 year old car only has 760 miles on the odometer. I am not sure if I believe in the accuracy of this number especially in light of the presence of a sticker with the color-code of the current paint job. This color was never a standard option. At some point, while still in Europe, the car must have been repainted in it’s current candy-apple red. It must have been in Europe since no American paint-shop would use stickers with the word “Color” in 3 different (European) languages. It is unlikely that the first (European) owner would have had the car painted only to immediately sell it to someone in America. All this indicates that the car had something of a life in Europe before coming to the USA. Therefore 760 is probably the true mileage since its arrival on the American Shores but it does not include the distance traveled in Europe, before the Miles Per Hour speedometer was put in as part of the federalization process.

This is M1 # 435, needless to say I would appreciate any information...