In today’s economy, car prices are unprecedentedly high. New cars like the GMC Hummer EV sell far more than their sticker price, and other older cars like the Honda S2000 also fetch a pretty penny on auction sites. This is really bizarre because all cars have a tendency to depreciate over time, but sometimes exceptions are made because a car is exceptionally rare or great to drive.
European cars tend to be the most victims of depreciation, and that includes BMW. Today, however, we’ll be looking at a variety of Bavarian-built machines that will soar in value in the coming years, and if you’re an avid collector, or looking to acquire a car investment, these are the ones to keep an eye out for.
10 BMW 1M Coupe
For today’s list, we’ll start with the least surprising car overall, the BMW 1M Coupé. Many Beemer purists consider the 1M Coupé to be the greatest modern BMW ever made, even bigger than the BMW M2 Competition, and with such a remarkable reputation, these have been rising in value for years and don’t seem to be stopping anytime soon.
The 1M was powered by a 3.0-liter, twin-turbocharged six-cylinder, the N54, also found in the 335i E90 3 Series, it delivered 335 horsepower and 332 lb-ft of torque, and was mated exclusively to a 6- speed standard transmission. If you find one in good condition, go ahead and buy it, because it will be more day by day to see these sell for six figures.
9 BMW E36 M3
6 different generations of the BMW M3 have been produced so far, the G80 is the latest, and of the whole range the E36 is the most underrated M3 to date. It featured a traditional naturally aspirated 3.0-litre inline six and was offered in a coupe, sedan or convertible.
The E36 is also the cheapest M3 on sale right now, but that doesn’t mean they will remain affordable forever. In recent years, the E46 M3 has seen a huge price increase and we wouldn’t be surprised if the E36 followed in its footsteps.
8 BMW E60 M5
The E60 M5 is arguably the wildest M5 ever made. It was powered by a naturally aspirated 5.0-litre 500 hp V10 engine, but it was notorious for being unreliable. This fact alone has put many buyers off, resulting in prices for these super saloons falling.
That said, the time has come for the chart to follow a different trend entirely, and buyers are beginning to realize that with just a few pre-fixes, the S85 powertrain could be nearly flawless. Of course, some stick shift V10 powered M5s were also made, and if you find one for a reasonable price, jump on the gun.
7 BMW E63 M6
The E63 M6 had the same 500 horsepower drivetrain as the aforementioned E60 M5, but the M6’s demise wasn’t just due to its reliability issues, no, the E63 M6 was initially frowned upon for its design – the emphasis was initially on design. Over the years, this 6 Series design has aged like a fine wine, and interest has increased.
Fortunately, demand for this Bimmer has not yet reached astronomical status, but soon after buyers realize what a great investment the E60 M5 is, they will flock to this M6 and prices will go through the roof.
6 BMW F06 M6 Gran Coupe
After the E63 M6 came the F13 M6, which closed the V10 powertrain for two less cylinders, but got two turbochargers. It was powered by a 4.4-liter twin-turbocharged V8 producing 552 horsepower and 501 lb-ft of torque, delivered to the rear wheels only, and this M6 was available in a coupe, convertible, or sedan, the body style called the Gran Coupe – the latter is the voice of this M6 generation.
Of course the M6 Gran Coupé was not the last high-performance BMW sedan ever produced, the M8 Competition Gran Coupé still exists, but it lacked a very special feature that the M6 had: a manual transmission. Though rare, M6 Gran Coupes fitted with a gearshift are the holy grain of modern BMW sedans, and if you can find one, rest assured it will be worth more than six figures someday.
5 BMW F10 M5
The F10 M5 was the first-ever turbocharged M5 to hit the road, and it was powered by the same S63 twin-turbocharged V8 that powered the M6. However, it wasn’t the powertrain or the fact that the M5 was fitted with an optional manual transmission, the secret was in the numbers.
There were a few limited-edition F10 M5s built throughout its lifecycle. This includes cars such as the M5 Competition Package, the 30 Jahre BMW M5, as well as the Pure Metal Silver Edition. If new the limited edition models would have cost a lot more than the base model M5, but these days they all sell for about the same price, but in the long run these limited edition super saloons will be worth much more than the standard M5.
4 BMW E31 850Ci
Many people often forget that an 8-Series was built before the current generation of 8-Series, which is why they remain relatively affordable today. The E31 8 Series had numerous trim levels such as the 840Ci, 850i, 850Ci, 850CSi, and even some of them were tuned by Alpina themselves and called the B12.
The 850CSi is already worth far more than the average person can afford, but the 850Ci is still viable. On the used market, these 322 horsepower V12-powered timeless Grand Touring cars cost less than $30,000, but eventually they too will reach over $100,000.
3 BMW Z1
The BMW Z1 was the very first Bavarian-built machine to bear the Z decal, and it’s also the strangest BMW ever made. It was powered by a 168bhp 2.5-litre inline six, so it wasn’t a powerhouse, but it cornered like a true lightweight roadster – by the way, did we mention the doors disappear into the body?
Seeing a BMW Z1 for sale is a rare sight, and when they do they usually sell for around $50,000, but if these followed the same pattern as the Z8, they’ll be worth a fortune.
2 BMW Z4 M
The BMW Z4 is probably BMW’s most popular topless sports car ever, and the Z4 M was its most dangerous version. It inhabited a 343 horsepower 3.2-litre six-cylinder engine derived from an E46 M3… on paper adding such a powerful powertrain to a small rear-wheel drive sports car sounds ridiculous, but BMW did it anyway.
When new, the Z4 M cost about $50,000, at the time that was unbearably high compared to its rivals like the Porsche Boxster, and they’ve fallen well below their original value since then. That said, the average value for a Z4 M is increasing by the day, and it’s only a matter of time before they cross the $50,000 mark again.
1 BMW i8
We were stunned to see how cheap i8s are these days – less than $70,000. On the one hand, we’re focusing on owners who bought them brand new, but on the other, it gives buyers like us the chance to pick up the very first true hybrid sports car ever built by BMW at a fraction of the cost.
Best of all? The i8 was discontinued, so no new ones will be built. So, according to the rule of supply and demand, if the demand behind the i8 remains constant and the supply becomes scarcer, the price people are willing to pay for it will rise. The i8 is probably the most expensive car on our list, and it’s certainly the newest, but it’s well worth it. The i8 is said to have a successor, the i8 M, but that’s a different story altogether.