Welcome to Craigslist Crapshoot, our weekly search for the most bizarre, awesome, and/or terrible vehicles that the online classifieds has to offer.
Being an American, I always got the giggles when on Top Gear they would refer to a car with a Z in its name as a Zed, like in 240-ZED. BMW obviously gave the show plenty of fodder as their modern line of two-seater convertibles and coupes all carried the Zed series appellation. That’s what we went looking for last week, Z3s. Z4s, hell, even Z8s if you’re aspirations were high. We’ll see what zoomed to the top in sec, but first, hmmmmmm.
BMW long made its name on the straight six engine, a format that is intrinsically balanced and hence as smooth as the proverbial baby’s cheek. You know what’s even smoother than that? That’s right, Felix Wankel’s rotary engine, the pistons of which took their shape from Paul Revere’s hat. Let’s find us some rotary goodness for sale, whether it be from that most ubiquitous of purveyors, Mazda, or from NSU, Citroen or that rarest of the rare, the Suzuki RE5.
As always, we want your finds to go down in infamy and not in the site’s spam filter. Since we’ve changed commenting systems, you may need to update your commenter account. Make sure you have a Disqus account – they’re free and easy to get – and then comment away.
I’m glad we decided to throw some love the BMW Z series’ way because seeing how unloved many of those up for sale seem to be, they could certainly use it. Take for example the excremental Z3 found by Manic_King. Yeah, it was the lowest of the low when it came to engines but no car deserves that kind of paint job. Hell, I think a big the reason that Microsoft’s Zune music player failed a decade back was because it came in matte turd finish. I mean, who wouldn’t feel uncomfortable digging that out of a back pocket?
On the other end of the spectrum sat this 1998 Z3 2.8 located by Muthalovin. In its obscure Dakar yellow paint, it proved that a BMW Z can be different without being dorky. Of course sometimes the dork is just too strong and that’s why the winner of last week’s search is not the most desirable, or the best value, but the most WTF.
Uncovered by Andrew_theS2kBore, here we have a Z3 Clownshoe that takes its nickname very, very seriously. It’s as though Batman had suddenly experienced cutbacks in his cashflow and needed to downsize the whole crimefighting operation. No, none of us would ever be seen within 100 yards of this, but it’s still a remarkable testament to the vast panoply of Z treatments you will find out there. The sad thing is, in 20 years or so, the cars will likely be even more rare and dear, and the cosy of un-screwing ones like this will be tragic.
Congrats to Andrew_theS2kBore, and thank you all for playing. Now, go find me something that goes hmmmmmm.