(Image: Author)

A few months ago we drove a fantastically well-dialed 1974 BMW 2002. Fun as the car was on-road, it’s not historically significant or a desirable Tii, turbo, or even round-taillight variant. Which makes the price it pulled down pretty impressive.

This baby Bimmer was put together by SoCal restoration shop Coupe King and the whole build was organized by car stereo company Clarion. It was born from Clarion’s desire to raise its profile among consumers in the company’s “Clarion Builds” video series which basically does nice modernization/restorations of fan-favorite cars and fits them with a big ol’ stereo system.

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We took the car to the canyon roads above Malibu and had so much fun I almost drove it off a cliff just to guarantee I went out on a high note.

(image: Author)

After being handed around to pro drift-driver Chris Forsberg and pretty much every LA-area automotive journalist, the Clarion Builds 2002 was finally sent off to a Barrett-Jackson automotive auction in Palm Beach, Florida where it sold for a whopping $125,000.

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To give you an idea about just how extraordinary that sum is, you can see that this auction house has previously sold these cars for about $100,000 less. Heck ten years ago somebody picked up a lovely blue ’74 for $4,400 at the very same auction.

Classic car appraising and insuring company Hagerty says an “average” 1974 BMW 2002 is worth a little under $11,000.

Now of course there are several factors inflating the price of this particular car. First and most importantly 100 percent of the hammer price was set to be donated to TGen. That’s the Translational Genomics Research Institute, “focused on developing earlier diagnostics and smarter treatments” in their words.

Barrett-Jackson has a longstanding relationship with TGen, having reportedly raised nearly $2 million for the institute’s research. That’s because auction Chairman and CEO Craig Jackson’s father, Russ (a founder of Barrett-Jackson) and his brother Brian both tragically died of colon cancer.

Clarion has done a classy thing by sending all the money the car fetched to the sake of medical science. Which brings me to the second reason somebody spent so much money on this 2002.

(Image: Author)

You don’t have to be a car stereo freak to get behind what Clarion did to this car, which we discussed extensively in our road test. The subtle modernizing was brilliant under a classic design, the car was expertly put together, and really was terrifically behaved on the road.

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The new owner will have themselves the perfect vintage Bimmer to actually enjoy driving without worrying about sullying a museum piece. What more could you possibly want?