2000 BMW Z3 2.0

Straight-six engine adds energy and character to Carol Conte’s appealing roadster. It even has decent practicality.

Carol, what were the main reasons you bought this car?
When the Z3 came out, I thought it was the bees-knees, especially in red. About ten years ago, I stopped to buy fish and chips at the end of the working year and saw this car advertised in a dealer booklet. It sounds like a blonde woman joke when I tell people I went in to buy fish and chips and ended up with a BMW. I still love the way the car responds; the steering is lovely and the engine note gives the impression of strength and speed.

How do you rate the overall condition?
8 or 8.5. It’s regularly on the road but I take very good care of it.

The design feature you like most?
The lines of vents in the front guards.

Do you have long-term intentions with this car?
I’m frequently approached by people wanting to buy it, which makes me think I really ought to keep it. I did consider replacing it this year with an electric car but feel small EVs still need to be a bit better than they are.

Your longest trip in the car?
Personally, only from East to West Auckland, although my son has taken it up to the Bay of Islands.

The most complex repair job in your ownership?
Fitting a brand-new hood two years ago. It’s made a big difference because the old one had a hole in it and the rear window had deteriorated.

How often do you drop the hood?
Not as often as I expected. I thought I would always have it down but it has to be a cooler day or else you can get terribly burnt.

Any bugbears to report?
Practicality is generally good, however I do track and field and find that I can’t safely carry my javelin in the Z3. I dare not risk damaging the new hood and rear window. Also, an airbag warning light appears from time to time, which is very frustrating.

Would you be more likely to buy an Italian or American car?
Italian!

Have you owned other special-interest cars?
A small Triumph sportscar while living in Mauritius, and a compact Mercedes saloon, which my husband and I drove in Rome, in the early 1970s. It was diesel and particularly good during the fuel crisis that plagued Italy.

What was the first car you drove, and where did you drive it?
It was a Morris 12, my boyfriend’s old family car in Waterview, Auckland. I got my licence in that car.


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BMW Z3 2.0

YEARS PRODUCED 1999-2000

MILEAGE approx 105,000km

ENGINE 1991cc straight-six

POWER 110kW (148bhp)

TRANSMISSION 5-spd auto

DRIVETRAIN rear -wheel drive

WEIGHT 1345kg

LENGTH 4.05m

0-100km/h 9.2 secs

WHEELS 17-inch alloy

COLOUR Titan Silver metallic

UPHOLSTERY Black leather

OWNER Carol, Auckland

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