I have struggled for years with my weight, never seeming to be able to get a handle on it. 3 years ago I started on a path to get myself healthier when I reached a very high peak weight of 535lbs. Now on a 6'4" frame this didn't look too bad but it was terrible.
Aside from the back pain there was other joint pain and life was generally not great for me. Health wise I was not doing badly, I even had a blood pressure that made my doctor jealous but it was time to change everything. I entered into a weight loss program and had Roux en Y bariatric surgery which has allowed me to lose 262lbs. It has been a struggle but so far I am on track to live a much longer, healthier life.
I know this will sound corny but I decided that I would treat myself when I got to a certain goal and try to get a fun car for myself. I have always been a gearhead but fun cars were always out of my reach given my stature. Forever they were to remain images on paper, or something that I would look at while at car shows, never to have one because simply anything that I desired was far too small for me.
Fate stepped in one day, and an opportunity hit that I had to take.
10 years ago the father of a very good friend of mine purchased a 1972 BMW 2002tii in Inka Orange. He loved this car a lot and cherished it, but at the same time his taste when it came to automotive accessories and restoration were... questionable.
The car was originally owned by a gentleman in the US who owned the car from new, using it as a daily driver for a while before turning it into a track car. He raced the car for a few years before he sold it and it made its way up to Canada.
The car was very original but in need of work so my friend’s father decided to do a lot of the work himself and set about "improving" the car. He purchased a set of seats from a newer 320, and had the orange inserts and piping done on them and I admit that looks pretty good to me, and they are original BMW Recaro units so no complaints there at all. After that he attacked the dash, which was cracked and he replaced the rare original tii dash with one from a newer 2002. I have since come to find out that if you can find a genuine 2002tii dash with clock it will set you back near as makes no difference $1000... OUCH
He now turned his attention to the engine and removed the entire Kugelfischer fuel injection system on the car and replaced it with the single carb setup found on a standard 2002. He then constructed his own version of a "forced air" setup using a length of dryer hose, a cake dish, and some hand moulded fiberglass thing instead of just getting the proper air cleaner for the car.
Finally he decided that this classic BMW needed a cheap 90's style Supra wing on the back of it, and added the most hideous thing I have ever seen. Even after numerous people told him not to do it, including his son, there it sits, on the deck lid.
in 2008 his father parked the car in the garage with the intention of doing some more work on it, but things in life stepped in to not allow that to happen and the car sat.
In 2010, around the time that I decided to go ahead with the surgery and get my life in gear so to speak, my friend’s father passed away suddenly. For 2 years after his passing, his mother tried to sell the car but was unsuccessful. They live in a pretty rural area and most people when they hear 1972 their mind goes Chevelle! or Mustang! or Cuda! not BMW!
Cut to September of 2012 and I was talking to my friend about a huge bonfire bbq that they were having and made a comment to him about the car and that I will look it over when I get there, to give his mom an idea of what it is worth. She was happy to have me look at it. The days comes around and I take a good look at the car, making mental notes about it and stating what it could be worth as it sat.
We left it at that and had a whole lot of fun that night partying around the bonfire. His mother asked me if I liked the car and of course I said yes. I have a soft spot for BMW's and she asked me what I would pay for the car. I told her that I could only ever insult her as I had only just started saving for my future sporty car purchase but I threw a number out there for her knowing that it was far too low to even think about. She basically shook my hand and told me to have the car out of there by the end of the month.
I was a bit stunned as I was not planning to purchase a car but here it fell into my lap.
September 22 2012 my dad, my friend and I were loading the car up onto a trailer to make the 150km drive back. The car was stored at a local storage facility in preparation for its rebirth.