1944 BMW 327 Coupé
Chassis no. 74169
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 gear changes 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 60bhp in the 327, which could also be ordered with the 328 sports car's 80bhp unit at extra cost. Autocar magazine got its hands on a 328-engined Type 327 Sports Cabriolet in 1939, achieving the highly creditable maximum speed, for a 2-litre car, of 96.77mph while testing the BMW at Brooklands.
This example of a very rare and highly desirable early BMW sports car was manufactured in March 1940 and delivered new to Vienna, Austria, while the engine's identification plate dates it to 1944. Restored in 2009 by Mercedes-Benz agents Hirschvogel GmbH of Straubing, Germany, it is finished in black/cream with beige interior and presented in a condition commensurate with this relatively recent professional refurbishment.
The car is offered with starting instructions, German registration papers and roadworthiness certificate.
- Please note that this car was built in 1940 and not in 1944 as stated in the printed catalogue. Only the engine cover is from the year 1944.