Check out this stunning 1972 BMW 2002Tii

BMW 2002 Tii

Helping cement BMW’s claim that it built the ‘ulitmate driving machine’ the BMW 2002 has become a legend, and this 2002Tii is one of the best we’ve seen.

Proudly brought to you by Oricom: Back in 1971, Wheels Magazine said if you reckoned you’d driven the world’s top 10 cars but that your list didn’t include the 2002, then that list would be incomplete.

The BMW 2002 lobbed onto the market in 1968 and while that one wasn’t too much chop, BMW had hit onto something. It was quickly updated with the 2002Ti boasting twin Solex 40 carburettors and a higher compression motor which not only gave it more power but also a higher top speed.

The 2002 was now on an even keel with some of the sharper vehicles of the age, only it offered four seats and a reasonable boot whereas the others were mostly two seaters. BMW fiddled around with lower powered engines again and a drop top version in 1971.

But it was the other 2002 that arrived in 1971 that had performance fans enthused, the 2002Tii with its beefier engine with Kugelfischer fuel injection upped grunt to 130hp. This model replaced the earlier 2002Ti. And then in 1973, BMW pushed the boat right out with the 2002 Turbo which made 170hp and propelled the thing to 100km/hin 7.0 seconds compared with the 2002Tii that took 9.3 seconds.

Like a lot of early turbo cars though, its performance was like a lightswitch. Meaning, nothing, nothing and then everything…it was too hot to handle for most and the model didn’t sell well.

The collector’s model is the 2002Tii which might not have been as quick as the 2002 Turbo but it handled like a peach with its beefy MacPherson strut front end, and both a four-speed Borg Warner box as well as a four-speed manual.

The car we’re looking at today is a 1972 BMW 2002Tii which was ordered in Australia and picked up at the BMW factory by its first owner who then fanged it around Europe. Following his tour, it was packed up and shipped back to Australia with the current owner, Tony Piperkos still in possession of the original shipping papers. Here’s what Tony told us about his gorgeous 2002Tii.

MotoFomo: Have you always been into cars?.

Tony Piperkos: Yes I’ve always been into cars; from an early age my brother was a mechanic, and I fell in love with German cars, like Wolkswagen, Porsche, Mercedes-Benz and, of course, BMW. But I also loved Aussie muscle cars. I would love to have a E49 R/T Chrysler Charger (in orange, of course).

MotoFomo: What was your first car?

Tony Piperkos: 1969 Volkswagen Beetle.

MotoFomo: Why the BMW 2002?

Tony Piperkos: I loved the boxy shape of the 2002, they are cool and Iconic. I remember seeing them in movies, and also a good friend of mine had rebuilt a stunning 2002, and he was very knowledgeable. He gave me lots of guidance and we looked at quite a few together.

MotoFomo: How long have you owned it?

Tony Piperkos: Two-and-a-half years.

MotoFomo: What condition was it in when you bought it? 

Tony Piperkos: The car was in great condition and really well looked after by the previous owners.

MotoFomo: Had you been looking for a long time?

Tony Piperkos: I had been looking for several years, and always not the right car, price, project etc. I held out until I found an Inka Orange on black. A few months earlier, there were a few others that I nearly pulled the trigger on, however I didn’t go ahead as I didn’t like their condition or colour.

MotoFomo: What work have you done/had done to it?

Tony Piperkos: Not a great deal as the car was in pretty original condition, and well looked after over its history.

MotoFomo: Have you done the work yourself?

Tony Piperkos: No I leave that to the experts

MotoFomo: Is it a daily driver?

Tony Piperkos: It was my daily driver for a short while, and it always puts a smile on my face when I drive it. It gets lots of thumbs up from people, and everyone always comments about the colour and how they love vintage cars.

MotoFomo: What made you join Highball Motor Club?

Tony Piperkos: I met the Highball Motor Club out and about one day and really liked their approach and attitude to the car scene. They are a great bunch of people, happy to chat about all things cars and have a laugh with. Some great cars in the club too. Fact – This little car wears the No.1 title of being the First Club Car Registered under Highball Motor Club,

MotoFomo: Anyone or any company you want to thank?

Tony Piperkos: The car is currently on display as part of a collection at Southern BMW in Moorabbin. It has an amazing workshop and the team is very knowledgeable across all things BMW both classic and new.

MotoFomo: Is the 2002Tii standard?

Tony Piperkos: It’s pretty standard all-round, it’s a 2.0-litre inline 4 cylinder engine and is fitted with twin 45mm Italian webbers, Bilsteins, original interior four-speed manual transmission, 13-inch Alpina-style wheels. 

The BMW 2002Tii wasn’t fragile like plenty other performance cars of its age. It was happy to be flogged pretty hard and helped BMW make the claim that it built the ‘ultimate driving machine’.

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Isaac Bober has been writing about cars and 4x4s for more than 20 years, has worked on some of the country's biggest motoring magazines (remember what they were?), and launched Practical Motoring. Now he's back, back again... to share dad jokes and much more.