1963 BMW 700 LS Luxus Saloon (Long Version)
Rare vehicle, left hand drive Italian market BMW
Recently imported from a dry climate in Italy
Extremely original BMW with one recent respray, interior is completely original
Correct white over Capri Green exterior and ivory/gray interior
Rear-mounted 697cc flat two-cylinder engine producing 32HP (47 mpg)
Four-speed manual transmission
The first BMW to use a steel monocoque structure
Very nice original undercarriage
Produced in West Germany
Forty years before BMW unveiled its Mini, the company made its first foray into small but sporty models, pre-dating the famous 2002 model. MotoeXotica Classic Cars has an example of this early sporty rear engine BMW , which you may not have seen before unless you’ve been to classic BMW museums. We are pleased to present this rarely seen and very original 1963 BMW 700 LS Luxus two-door saloon. This BMW is a rare left hand drive Italian market car that was recently imported from the United States from a very dry climate of Italy. Other than a recent correct respray, this car is very original and hard to come by in such a survivor state!
Finished in correct white over Capri Green, the car’s paint and trim are in overall good condition. The car’s windows are clear and intact, as are the car’s lights, including its Fintail-style taillamps.
This wee BMW rides on vintage Michelin radials, size 5.20-12 at all four corners. The tires are old and do show dry rot in the sidewalls
This car’s bodywork is straight, including the hood in the rear overall very presentable, rare example with some bubbling in the paint. The engine bay is tidy, the battery appears new, the front cargo area is in good condition and the bumpers fit well though the rear one evidences some blemishes upon close inspection. The undercarriage is completely original, plus very dry and tidy.
Under that rear hood is the correct 697cc flat two-cylinder engine using a Solex 34PCI single-barrel carburetor mated to a four-speed manual transmission producing 32 HP with achievable mpg in the mid 40’s.
Inside, the car’s ivory and gray interior is in overall decent condition especially for being completely original. The thin-backed front bucket seats are in fair order, with the driver’s seat showing blemishes and wear but the material is correct and original. There is no carpeting; instead, the floor is covered in the hard to find BMW rubber matting that is in decent order. The headliner is in overall fair shape but does show some blemishes. The instrument panel, with its VDO gauges, is in good order, as is the factory, two-spoke steering wheel, inner door panels, mirror glass and shift lever are all in good shape. This is a radio delete model and the horn is inoperable.
The 700 models were a sales success at a time when BMW was close to financial ruin. More than 188,000 were sold before production ended in November 1965. Upon discontinuing the 700, BMW left the economy car market and did not return until 2002 with the Mini.
Wolfgang Denzel, the distributor of BMW cars in Austria, commissioned Giovanni Michelotti to prepare concept sketches based on a lengthened BMW 600 chassis. In January 1958, Denzel was awarded a development contract for the 700. Denzel presented a prototype to BMW’s management in July 1958. The concept, a 2-door coupe with a slanted roof, was generally well received, but objections were raised about the limited passenger space. BMW decided to produce two versions, the coupe, and a two-door sedan with a taller, longer roof.
The engineer responsible for the chassis and suspension was Willy Black, who had designed and engineered the 600. The drivetrain and suspension were similar to those of the 600, with a rear-mounted flat-twin engine powering the rear wheels, leading arm suspension at the front, and semi trailing arm suspension at the rear. The 700 used a steel monocoque structure and it was the first BMW automobile to do so.
These 700s are special cars for lots of reasons in addition to helping save BMW from being bought and picked clean by Mercedes Benz. That did not happen because the Quandt family stepped in to help keep BMW independent. Thankfully BMW remained independent, otherwise we would have had more bloated sedans for captains of industry instead of the M3, the M5, and now the M2, M4, Z series, and all those great handling small sedans powered by what were sometimes detuned race engines.
The engine was an enlarged version of that used in the R67 motorcycle and the 600. With a bore of 3.1 inches and 2.9 inches of stroke, the engine displaced 697 cubic centimeters. The engine originally used a single Solex 34PCI carburetor and had a compression ratio of 7.5:1. The 700 LS, a simplified Luxus with a lower price, was introduced in 1963.
If you’re looking to add to your BMW collection or just looking for a unique European city car, make sure to come by our facility soon and look this one over for yourself. We guarantee you will be the only one with this model at your local BMW meets!
Competition to the BMW 700 in 1963 included Alfa Romeo’s Dauphine, DKW’s Junior De Luxe, Ford’s Anglia Deluxe and Hillman’s Minx De Luxe Saloon.
This car is currently located at our facility in St. Louis, Missouri. Current mileage on the odometer shows 25,541 miles. It is sold as is, where is, on a clean and clear, mileage exempt title. GET OUT AND DRIVE!!!
Saint Louis, Missouri, United States