In the rarified world of automotive luxury, certain names stand out, and none more so than BMW. But among the Bavarian manufacturer’s numerous legends, which model holds the crown as the most expensive BMW? The answer might leave even seasoned car enthusiasts surprised. Diving deep into the allure and legacy of this esteemed brand, we’re about to take you on a thrilling journey into the world of BMW’s priciest masterpiece. And if you thought this was the pinnacle of luxury, wait till you see the most expensive car in the world. Buckle up, as this ride promises intrigue, nostalgia, and a touch of opulence at every turn.
|11||BMW Alpina V8 Roadster||$310,000|
|10||1981 BMW M1||$577,500|
|9||2014 BMW M5 “30 Years Of M5” Limited Edition||$700,000|
|8||1978 BMW 320i Turbo IMSA||$731,000|
|7||1939 Frazer Nash-BMW 328 Sportscar||$825,000|
|6||2014 BMW i8 Concours d’Elegance Edition||$825,000|
|5||1980 BMW M1 Procar||$913,000|
|4||BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage Concept||$1.5 million|
|3||1958 BMW 507 Series II||$2.4 million|
|2||BMW Nazca M12||$3 million|
|1||1957 BMW 507 Touring Sports Car||$5 million|
The Most Expensive BMW
11. BMW Alpina V8 Roadster – $310,000
Alpina stands as a significant emblem of excellence in the automobile world. Founded in 1965, this brand has masterfully crafted high-performance versions of BMW vehicles. With an intimate integration into BMW’s production processes, Alpina is not just any aftermarket tuner but has gained recognition from the German Ministry of Transport as a bonafide automobile manufacturer. This unique relationship is a testament to the company’s ability to fuse power, luxury, and exclusivity, making their cars absolute treasures for automobile connoisseurs.
Priced at a hefty $310,000, the BMW Alpina V8 Roadster stands as one of the most expensive BMW cars and is nothing short of an automotive marvel. Based on the classic design of the BMW Z8, which itself drew inspiration from the iconic BMW 507, this limited-edition model is a journey into the past, reimagined for the modern age.
But what sets the Alpina V8 Roadster apart? Instead of continuing with the Z8’s 4.9-liter V8 engine from the M5, the Alpina V8 Roadster opted for a 4.8-liter V8 engine from the Alpina B10 V8 S. This engineering marvel churned out 375 hp and 520 Nm of torque. Add to that a sophisticated five-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters, a gentler suspension, and an opulent leather and Alcantara interior, and you have an automobile that redefines luxury. The cherry on top? Those distinctive 20-inch wheels. With only 555 units gracing the roads worldwide, owning one is akin to possessing a piece of automotive history.
If you thought the price tag on this exquisite BMW is staggering, you might also be interested to learn about the factors that contribute to the cost of other automotive services. For instance, ever wondered why Take 5 Oil Change is so expensive? It’s not just about the oil; it’s about what you get for the money you pay. Just like the BMW Alpina V8 Roadster, sometimes you’re paying for more than just the basics.
10. 1981 BMW M1 – $577,500
Diving into the annals of BMW’s illustrious history, the M1 stands out, as the first and only mid-engined supercar the brand ever birthed. Designed between 1978 and 1981, it was a brainchild of BMW’s motorsport division, crafted to dominate Group 4 and Group 5 racing. And while a series of unforeseen delays and evolving racing regulations may have kept it from realizing its complete racetrack potential, it did birth the Procar racing series – a riveting contest where F1 drivers would compete in identical M1s.
At a staggering sale price of $577,500, this 1981 BMW M1 is more than just a car; it’s a legend. An impeccable combination of a tubular steel chassis and a fiberglass body, this beast was propelled by a 3.5-liter inline-six engine that boasted 277 hp and 330 Nm of torque. But that’s not all. The racing version of this engine, the M88/1, amped up the game with 345 hp and 392 Nm of torque.
Today, the M1 holds a place of pride in BMW’s legacy. It wasn’t just a car; it was the first-ever exclusively developed model by BMW M, the high-performance division. It laid the foundation for future BMW designs and is today a much-coveted piece among collectors.
9. 2014 BMW M5 “30 Years Of M5” Limited Edition – $700,000
The BMW M5 isn’t just another model; it’s an icon. Launched in 1984, it seamlessly combined the dynamism of a sports car with the plush comfort of a business sedan. As this legend turned 30, BMW celebrated with the “30 Years Of M5” Limited Edition. Reflecting on five generations of evolution, from the six-cylinder engine wielding 252 hp to the roaring twin-turbo V8 with 560 hp, this edition stands as a testament to BMW’s relentless pursuit of perfection.
With some models fetching a mind-boggling $700,000, the “30 Years Of M5” Limited Edition isn’t just one of the expensive BMWs – it’s an emblem of luxury. While it was based on the fifth-generation F10 model, it was anything but ordinary. Boasting an output of 600 hp and 700 Nm of torque, this beast could go from 0 to 100 km/h in a mere 3.9 seconds. But it wasn’t just about raw power. With features like the Competition Package and a unique “30 Jahre M5” badge, every aspect of this car screamed exclusivity. Only 300 units were produced, making it a rare jewel in the crown of BMW’s legacy.
8. 1978 BMW 320i Turbo IMSA – $731,000
If you’ve ever dabbled in the realm of expensive BMWs, the 1978 BMW 320i Turbo IMSA likely stands out. Introduced in 1975, the 320i from the E21 generation of the BMW 3 Series made waves. The 2.0-liter inline-four engine with fuel injection, producing a handsome 125 hp and 176 Nm of torque, combined with either a four-speed manual or a three-speed automatic transmission, earned it praises. Critics lauded it for its agile handling and refined ride.
Dive deeper into BMW’s racing history, and the Turbo IMSA variant reveals itself as an iconic game-changer. A collaboration between BMW Motorsport and McLaren Engines, this racing dynamo was engineered for the IMSA GT Championship in North America. With its steel chassis, fiberglass body, and the powerful M12/9 engine – a turbocharged upgrade from the standard M10 – it was a beast on the track. This 1.4-liter turbo engine could push out up to 600 hp and 540 Nm of torque, making it one of the most expensive BMW racing models.
Having contested and overshadowed dominant competitors like the Porsche 935, the 320i Turbo IMSA enjoyed numerous victories. It won laurels, including the 1978 IMSA Camel GT Challenge for Manufacturers. But its legacy isn’t just limited to the track. It played a pivotal role in turbocharged engine technology experiments which culminated in the M12/13 engine, powering Brabham to a Formula One World Championship win in 1983.
Only five of these treasures were crafted, making it an incredibly rare collector’s item. Chassis number 003, a special lightweight variant, recently clinched a whopping $731,000 at an RM Sotheby’s auction in Monterey.
7. 1939 Frazer Nash-BMW 328 Sportscar – $825,000
Shifting gears to another luxury spectacle, we have the 1939 Frazer Nash-BMW 328 Sportscar. This is where British automotive finesse met German engineering. Frazer Nash, renowned for their lightweight, chain-driven cars, became the official British importer for BMW in 1934, leading to the union of the two brands.
BMW’s 328 sports car, introduced in 1936, was already a marvel. With an aerodynamic body, a tubular steel chassis, and a 2.0-liter inline-six engine, it could top 150 km/h (93 mph). It reigned supreme in many European races and rallies, standing testament to its engineering prowess.
The union with Frazer Nash birthed the Frazer Nash-BMW 328 Sportscar, a car tailor-made for British aristocracy. Limited to only about 50 units, this beauty is a gem in any expensive BMW collection. One of these, previously owned by the renowned British racer A.F.P. Fane, recently set a new sales record, fetching a grand $825,000 at a Bonhams auction in Carmel.
6. 2014 BMW i8 Concours d’Elegance Edition – $825,000
The recent years saw the rise of the BMW i8, a beacon of innovation and efficiency in the world of sports cars. Part of BMW’s ‘i’ sub-brand, the i8 was introduced in 2014 as a technological marvel. With its plug-in hybrid system combining a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine and an electric motor, it set benchmarks in terms of performance and sustainability.
But the crowning jewel among the i8s is undoubtedly the Concours d’Elegance Edition. Created to commemorate the car’s US debut, this one-of-a-kind variant boasts exclusive features such as Frozen Grey Metallic exterior paint, a digital display key, and a unique charging station. To complement the luxury, it came with a Louis Vuitton luggage set matching the car’s aura.
Such exclusivity always fetches a premium, and this i8 was no different. At a Pebble Beach auction in 2014, it secured a staggering $825,000.
5. 1980 BMW M1 Procar – $913,000
The M1 Procar wasn’t just another BMW model. It symbolized a monumental period for BMW Motorsport between 1979 and 1980. As a complementary event to the European Formula One races, the Procar series set the stage for the most iconic drivers from Formula One and touring car racing to showcase their prowess. Imagine legends like Niki Lauda and Nelson Piquet maneuvering identical, fine-tuned BMW M1 cars, each roaring with a 3.5-liter inline-six engine boasting 470 hp! The M1 Procar series was more than racing; it was a spectacle.
Today, the BMW M1 Procar stands as one of the expensive BMW models that represents BMW’s racing zenith. With only 54 models ever built, these vehicles are a collector’s dream. Their allure doesn’t just stem from their rarity but their impeccable design, performance, and historical significance. Imagine owning a piece of history sold for a whopping $913,000 in 2016! With features like a tubular steel chassis, a fiberglass body, side-mounted exhaust pipes, and distinctive air intakes, it’s a tangible manifestation of BMW’s engineering genius.
4. BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage Concept – $1.5 million
The BMW 3.0 CSL series is a testament to BMW’s unmatched legacy in racing. Dominating the European Touring Car Championship in the 1970s, the Coupe Sport Lightweight (CSL) was not just a car but an embodiment of BMW’s performance and design philosophy, laying the foundation for subsequent BMW M models.
Price, Details & Futuristic Brilliance:
Unveiled in 2015 at the revered Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, the BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage Concept is a blend of vintage charisma and modern innovation, priced at a breathtaking $1.5 million. Its carbon fiber body, a roaring six-cylinder engine, and a cockpit from the future make it a marvel of contemporary design, paying fitting homage to the original CSL.
3. 1958 BMW 507 Series II – $2.4 million
The BMW 507 is a tale of ambition, elegance, and a dream to capture the American luxury sports car market. Designed by Albrecht von Goertz under the influence of Max Hoffman, the 507 was an exquisite aluminum-bodied roadster with a 3.2-liter V8 engine. Though intended to rival the Mercedes-Benz 300SL, its exclusivity and high price made it elusive to most.
The BMW 507 Series II, introduced in 1957, brought refinements to this classic beauty, from cosmetic tweaks to mechanical upgrades. The fact that only 252 units were ever produced makes the Series II a priceless gem. And with a sale price reaching $2.4 million in 2017, it’s a testament to its evergreen charm and significance in BMW’s rich tapestry.
2. BMW Nazca M12 – $3 million
The early 1990s witnessed a collaboration between Italdesign and BMW, birthing the futuristic Nazca M12. Crafted by Fabrizio Giugiaro, this concept car, inspired by Formula One and Group C racing cars, was a testament to what the future of supercars might look like, flaunting a carbon fiber body and a mid-mounted V12 engine.
Heralded as one of the most innovative concept cars by BMW, the Nazca M12, valued at an impressive $3 million, is the epitome of design, technology, and vision. With only three ever produced, it’s one of the most expensive BMW models that boast unparalleled rarity. And when you hear rumors of one being acquired by the Sultan of Brunei, you know you’re talking about an unparalleled masterpiece.
1. 1957 BMW 507 Touring Sports Car – $5 million
The most expensive BMW is undeniably held by the iconic 507 Touring Sports Car, a marvel of German engineering and a symbol of luxurious motoring from the 1950s. This vehicle is not merely a sports car, it’s a snapshot of post-war opulence, optimism, and the pinnacle of craftsmanship from BMW.
The genesis of the BMW 507 can be traced back to a daring initiative, aimed at filling the market void between high-end Mercedes-Benz 300SLs and more modest sports cars like Triumph and MG. The vision for this extraordinary vehicle came from Max Hoffman, a US-based importer with a keen eye for European luxury cars. He convinced BMW to create the 507, steering the brand back into the sports car market after the discontinuation of the 328 model in 1940.
When it came to the car’s design, BMW didn’t hold back. Albrecht Goertz, a protégé of the legendary designer Raymond Loewy, was commissioned for the task. Under his expertise, the 507 was transformed into an object of sheer beauty. Its design language spoke of elegant curves, a long bonnet, and a low, sleek profile. But it wasn’t just about looks. The vehicle featured a 3.2-liter V8 engine pumping out 150 horsepower, paired with a four-speed manual transmission, allowing it to reach speeds up to 124 mph with ease.
In 1957, BMW elevated the 507’s splendor with the introduction of the Touring Sports Car variant. This model retained the core elements that made the original 507 spectacular but added new refinements. From slight bumper redesigns to engine modifications, each change was meticulously crafted. Customization options abounded, from a wide array of colors to plush interiors. For convertible lovers, some versions even came with detachable hardtops or removable soft tops.
The 507 Touring Sports Car has the honor of being the most expensive BMW of its time, further underscored by its celebrity ownership; legends like Elvis Presley and Ursula Andress were proud to have this car in their collections. Demonstrating its sustained value and allure, a 1957 BMW 507 Touring Sports Car fetched a jaw-dropping $5 million at an RM Sotheby’s auction in 2018.
Today, this car is much more than a vintage treasure; it’s a testament to BMW’s unwavering commitment to quality, performance, and luxury, making it a highly coveted piece of automotive history.
Why is BMW So Expensive?
BMW cars come with a high price tag for several reasons. First, they’re known for their high-quality engines and durable parts, made from premium materials and assembled with precision. This commitment to quality naturally elevates the cost of production. Second, BMWs are popular among collectors and enthusiasts, adding a layer of value that goes beyond mere mechanics to encompass the car’s history and cultural impact. Finally, maintenance and restoration can be pricey, especially for older, rarer models, where sourcing authentic parts can be costly. Overall, BMW targets an upper-class market willing to pay for luxury, performance, and legacy. To see how BMW’s luxurious offerings compare with their competitors, you may be interested in our article on the most expensive Audi.
Over the decades, BMW has masterfully carved out a legacy of producing vehicles that epitomize luxury, performance, and style. Cars like the 1957 BMW 507 Touring Sports Car are shining examples of the brand’s dedication to perfection and innovation. As these models age, their legacy, combined with factors like auctions, collector interest, and meticulous upkeep, ensures their price continues to soar.
While classics like the 507 will always hold a special place in automotive history, the future beckons with promise. BMW’s ventures into electric and autonomous vehicles, like the BMW i8 and the Vision M NEXT, showcase a blend of sustainability and performance. Given their technological prowess and pioneering designs, it wouldn’t be a stretch to imagine them becoming future classics, joining the ranks of the most sought-after and expensive BMW models in the decades to come
In essence, the luxury car market is a dynamic confluence of history, craftsmanship, and passion. And with brands like BMW continuing to push the envelope, the future looks brighter and even more luxurious.
What BMW cost $1 million?
The BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage Concept is priced at approximately $1.5 million, slightly surpassing the $1 million mark.
Which is the luxury series BMW?
The BMW 7 Series is typically considered BMW’s flagship luxury series. However, when it comes to vintage and collectible models, the BMW 507, especially the Touring Sports Car version, is one of the most luxurious and esteemed in BMW’s history.
How much is the Nazca C2 BMW?
The BMW Nazca M12, also known as the Nazca C2, is valued at $3 million, making it one of the most expensive BMW models ever.