One of BMWs most iconic cars is probably one that few have heard of outside the classic car industry. As with the rest of its production years, the 1961 BMW 700 is a stroke of luck and genius that not only saved BMW from a hostile takeover by Mercedes-Benz, but helped to shape it into the company we know and respect today. It was based on the 600, whose sales were cut short by its odd appearance (the door was in the literal front of the car, which swung out, steering wheel and all) and falling consumer willingness to buy bubble-cars due to the still-fresh memories of fuel shortages and a failing economy. However, if you were to place the 600 and the 700 side-by-side, youd be looking at two entirely different styles of design. The 700 looked much more like a conventional car, and quite a handsome one at that, whereas the 600 looked more like an alien spacecraft compared to anything that pops into our heads when we think the word car. In order to see the similarities, youd need to strip both down to their frames and internals. They shared both the two-cylinder motorcycle engine and the innovative rear suspension developed for the 600. The suspension system in particular would go on to be featured in BMW designs for many years after either car was produced.
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1961 was the first year that the 700 was available in three styles, rather than two: Coupe, saloon, and convertible. The convertible is relatively more rare than either of the other two, with only 2,600 built (as compared to the saloons 155,000 and the coupes 31,000), and so a convertible 1961 BMW 700 in good condition is quite the find indeed. If you find a car that you suspect might be more valuable than other cars of its type, thats all the more reason to get it professionally inspected. They might see something you dont, and what money it takes to hire an inspector to come out and take a look is well-worth not being surprised by interior issues you might have missed, such as signs of hidden rust or mechanical issues, not to mention the fact that they can tell you if the car is made of original parts much more quickly than you could have researched on your own. This tip brought to you by the professionals at the Beverly Hills Car Club! For more information, or if youre in the market for a great deal on a classic car, give them a call, theyd be more than happy to help.
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