1939 BMW 327 Cabriolet  Chassis no. 79023 Engine no. 79023
Lot 154
1939 BMW 327 Cabriolet Chassis no. 74023 Engine no. 74023
Sold for €143,750 (US$ 192,639) inc. premium
Lot Details
1939 BMW 327 Cabriolet
Chassis no. 74023
Engine no. 74023
The acquisition of the Dixi works at Eisenach in 1928 provided BMW, hitherto a manufacturer of aero engines and motorcycles, with a foothold in motor manufacturing. Dixi's built-under-license version of the Austin Seven was gradually developed and improved, ending up with swing-axle suspension and overhead valves, and then in 1933 came the first true BMW - the six-cylinder 303. The latter adopted a twin-tube frame and abandoned the rear swing axles in favour of a conventional live axle, while up front there was a superior transverse-leaf independent suspension and rack-and-pinion steering. These features, along with the four-bearing, overhead-valve engine, would provide the basis for the more powerful and sportingly inclined models to follow. Introduced in 1938, the 327 sports-tourer used the shortened, boxed, ladder-type chassis of the 326 saloon, shared by the 320, but with semi-elliptic rear springing in place of torsion bars. The gearbox was a Hurth four-speed manual unit with freewheel between 1st and 2nd gears, enabling clutch-less gearchanges at low speeds, while there were hydraulic brakes all round. BMW's pushrod six had by now been enlarged to 1,971cc and developed around 55bhp in the 327, which could also be ordered with the 328 sports car's 80bhp unit at extra cost.
This Danish-registered example of a rare and highly desirable early BMW sports car was sold new in Stockholm, Sweden on 31st December 1939 and delivered from the factory equipped with indicators and an American heater, while the colours and its overall appearance were as it is today. The car was then 'sold' to a Mr A K Jacobsen of Slagelse, Denmark and registered 'E2931' on 16th June 1947. He 'officially' handed the car to his son, motor dealer Poul Jacobsen (said to be the real owner from the beginning) on 4th November 1954.
On 23rd June 1955 the BMW passed to its next owner, accountant J B Jensen of Valby Denmark and was reregistered 'AR 20.839'. Mr Jensen drove the car for three years until an accident diminished his enthusiasm for fast driving. The director of the Ford main dealer Aarhus Motor Company then bought the car for his private use, in November 1958. However, when Ford's general manager heard about this he was ordered to sell the BMW and buy a Ford instead. The BMW was then sold discretely to the well-known Danish motoring journalist and photographer, Bjarne Kornbech of Brønshøj for a nominal sum and reregistered 'KA 32.651' on 24th December 1958. At this time the odometer was showing a total of 123,000 kilometres.
The BMW turned out to be the perfect car for Kornbech, who kept it for the next 38 years and used it all year round. Kornbech also toured Europe in the BMW, crossing the Alps on several occasions and sometimes covering as many as 40,000 kilometres annually.
The 327 participated in numerous races during the period 1962 to 1967 and by November 1981 the odometer reading had risen to 550,000 kilometres. In June 1997 the reading was 637,000 kilometres and both the car and its owner were beginning to show signs of fatigue. In fact, the 327 was now so tired that it could not pass the roadworthiness inspection and Kornbech reluctantly purchased a newer BMW.
The present owner was 'allowed' to buy the 327 in June 1997 having promised to restore the car and not break it for parts. Bjarne Kornbech said he wanted it to live on as 'a memory of the time when the BMW 327 and 328 were some of the kings of the road.' Unfortunately, he passed away before the car was finally complete in June 2009.
Late in June 1997 the car was taken to the Yngve Falk workshop in Esrum, Denmark, Yngve having had plenty of experience of owning and working on these pre-war BMWs. Starting in July 1997, the 327, which appeared complete and mainly original, was totally stripped down, a process that took the rest of the year to complete. Recognised specialists entrusted with the initial rebuild, which was undertaken in Germany, were Classic Concepts (Ingo Fabek) of Willish (body restoration and painting); and Der Oldtimerservice (Jörg Enger) of Krefeld (interior re-trim and convertible hood). Engine components were supplied Frank Mellmann of Lübeck, Germany with the full engine rebuild to factory specifications being carried out by Ingana ApS Balke & Wedel of Valby, Denmark.
In January 2008 the BMW left Germany and came back to Denmark where it was reassembled and tested in Esrum. Reunited with its original Danish registration number 'E2931', the car left Yngve Falk's workshop in July 2009 and since then has covered some 700 kilometres with only minor adjustments required.
Based on pictures and a description, the 327 was judged 'concours' by the daily web magazine PreWarCar and was invited to attend the annual Klampenborg Classic Motor Meeting in May 2010. Despite the meeting's theme being 'Alfa Romeo – 100 Years' it was this BMW 327 that took away the 'Car of the Day' award! Painstakingly restored, this beautiful pre-war BMW sports car is offered with its original handbook, sundry restoration invoices, miscellaneous magazine articles, assorted paperwork and Danish registration papers. The original heater and rear mudguard covers come with the car.

Das Dänisch zugelassene 327er Cabriolet wurde am 31.12.1939 in Stockholm registriert. Das seltene und gesuchte Fahrzeug wurde mit 'Winkern' und einer Amerikanischen Heizung ausgeliefert. Die Lackierung ist bis heut in den gleichen Farben geblieben. Im Juni 1947 wurde der Wagen nach Dänemark, an eine Familie Jacobsen verkauft, die ihn bis 1955 behielt. Nach zwei weiteren Besitzerwechseln in Dänemark, ging der 327 schliesslich im Dezember 1958 an den Dänischen Motorsport-Journalisten und Fotografen Bjarne Kornbech. Zu dieser Zeit betrug der Tachostand 123.000km. Kornbech behielt den Wagen 38 Jahre (!) lang, fuhr ihn das ganze Jahr über und legte zeitweise 40.000km jährlich zurück. Zwischen 1962 und 1967 nahm der BMW an zahlreichen Rennen teil und schliesslich war der Kilometerstand im November 1981 auf 550.000km angestiegen. Schliesslich, im Jahr 1997 und 637,000 Gesamtkilometern zeigten Fahrer und Fahrzeug Ermüdungserscheinungen. So konnte der gegenwärtige Besitzer den BMW im Juni 1997 erwerben, nachdem er versprochen hatte ihn zu restaurieren und nicht nur als 'Teileträger' zu verwenden. Die Fertigstellung, im Juni 2009, erlebte Kornbech leider nicht mehr.
Ab 1997 begannen anerkannte Spezialisten in Deutschland eine komplette, aufwendige Restauration: Classic Concepts, (Ingo Fabek), in Willich, (Karosserie und Lack), Der Oldtimerservice, (Jörg Enger), aus Krefeld (Interieur und Cabrio-Dach). Motorteile wurden von Frank Mellmann, Lübeck, geliefert. Die komplette Überholung des Motors, nach Hersteller-Spezifikationen, übernahm, schliesslich die Firma Ingana ApS Balke & Wedel of Valby, in Dänemark.
Im Januar 2008 kam der Wagen zurück nach Dänemark, wo er komplettiert wurde und wo das "Zerlegen in Einzelteile" im Juni 1997 begonnen hatte. Hier dauerte es nochmals bis Juli 2009 bis zur Komplettierung und seitdem wurden nur 700km problemlos gefahren, und es wurden lediglich einige kleinere Einstellarbeiten notwendig. Eingeladen zum 'Klampenborg Classic Motor Meeting' gewann der top-restaurierte 327 'Car of the Day' award, obwohl das eigentliche Thema 'Alfa Romeo' hiess! Aufwendigst wiederhergestellt, wird das wunderschöne Cabriolet mit der originalen Betriebsanleitung, allen Restaurationsbelegen, sowie einer grossen Anzahl von Fotos und Magazinberichten versteigert. Zum Fahrzeug gehören Dänische Wagenpapiere. Original Heizung, und hintere Kotflügelabdeckungen werden mitgeliefert.

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