Companion Piece

When I posted my little paean of car-lust for the BMW 507 a few days ago, there was a certain degree of good-natured ribbing of Beemer drivers.  For all that, though, we all know that BMW has turned out some pretty good cars over the years, and another of my personal favorites was the first of the M series, the M1.

I first saw one of these back in the early 1980s in South Africa, and fell into complete lust for it.  Of course, it was way out of my means to buy one, and I was saving for another classic at the time anyway.

But in doing some research on this beauty, I unexpectedly stumbled on something fine:  a man who repairs and restores classic cars such as these, and I was instantly drawn in.  (Many hours later…)

We’re all familiar with the brilliant “Primer” series, hosted by Othias and Mae — who educate us about classic guns — and I think I’ve discovered a similar channel for those of us who, like me, are in love with old cars as much as we are in love with old firearms.

This would be Tyrell’s Classic Workshop, hosted by Iain Tyrell, and here’s his take on the BMW M1.

Just as watching Othias and Mae talk about old guns makes us (well, me at any rate) want to possess one of those old beauties, Tyrell’s discussion of the car’s history, his repair and final test drive of the M1 makes me want one of those M1s with a desire so much it hurts.

So I hereby announce that the BMW 507 and M1 are my current automotive love pairing:

1950s, meet the 1980s.


  1. Until you posted that picture, had never seen a 507 at all. But first impression was “that has Pininfarina” written all over it. Has some flavor of my old Fiat 124 spider (just a smidge).

    As to the M1, at my age could not see myself getting back out once climbing in, kind of same issue with the 64 E type FHC which I sold before getting too old (sniff!).

  2. I dunno. I never really found the wedge shaped cars to be all that pleasing to the eye. They look too much like a doorstop for me.
    But then, I suspect that I may be younger than many other commenters, enough so that even the late 70s and early 80s cars were “old” and “classics” to me when I became aware of them, instead of the coolest new hot rods on the market. As such, I have exactly zero sentimental attachment to them from my youth, so they get graded for appearance right next to their older cousins, and to my eye, they lack in aesthetics.
    (For the record, I love the swoopy curves of older Corvette Stingrays, the melted grills of older Pontiac and BMWs, the overall lines of almost any car from the 1930s and 40s, and my “dream car” has always been a 1967 Mustang GT frame that has been gutted and replaced mechanically with modern powerplant, steering, transmission, and suspension. I actually LIKED the looks of the Pontiac Solstice, despite it being an undeniable “chick car,” precisely because of the throwback appearance with modern machinery).
    Each to their own, just like with firearms and alcohol.

  3. I’d add the 840csi to that list of great beemers.

    I had an M Roadster back in the day. Z3 with M3 3.2 litre 6 cylinder. Fantastic car. A 2000 model car that’s doubled in value since I sold it….

  4. Since I have neither the independent wealth nor the mechanical skill to keep a classic car running (and one or the other is necessary), this is purely an exercise in daydreaming. On that basis, I’d want a 1927 Duesenberg, like the one I saw as a pup in the Cleveland Auto Museum.

    Not as fast or as agile as younger cars, but I don’t have that level of driving skill anyway. For sedate touring only.

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