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BMW 6-Series (1976 - 1989)

Last updated 11 April 2013

Room for four, fast in 635CSi form, well behaved, good looking and ever so cool in the right colour
Parts costs high, lots now now longer available, watch out for abused examples masquerading as cherished classics.


The BMW 6-Series was a logical evolution of the luxury saloon in range this time, the 7-Series. As before - and just like the larger saloon - the 6-Series had sharp steering, keen dynamics and excellent performance. The styling was less clean, losing its pillarless side windows, but it aged very well during its production run. Conceived as a grand tourer, the 6-Series was easy to live with, and gratifyingly agile.

They weren't as quick as they might have been though. The launch 628 and 633 were rapid, but not blisteringly so. And compared with the Jaguar XJ-S and Mercedes-Benz 450SLC, they just lacked muscle. However, in 1979, the larger-engined fuel injected 635CSi was introduced, and it went a long way to redressing these shortcomings, thanks to its crisp new engine and altered chassis settings.

Throughout its life, the CSi continued to be improved, thanks to further running changes. When it was replaced by the 850 in 1989, commentators bemoaned the fact the new car wasn’t as instantly appealing as the old – sound familiar? Today, and as a classic car, the 6-Series makes a huge amount of sense thanks to its commodious interior and improved reliability and rust resistance.

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