My 2002 Tii - Barney on a budget
My Dad raced a 2002 Tii in the BMW Car Club Championship back in 1987 when I was 15 years old. He won the class and the championship outright in a car that was prepared on a fraction of the budget compared to some of the other competitors. No limited slip differential, no 5 speed close ratio gearbox and the car was driven to every single race that season. No trailer or massive spares package in-tow.
Watching my Dad and many of his friends hurtling around race tracks all over the UK in their race 2002 Tii's, started a love affair with these cars. The Tii was the slightly more powerful fuel injected 2002 with 140 bhp. Imagine that amount of power in a compact, quite light two door car in the early seventies. Most contemporaries of the time where lucky if they produced 80 bhp. Even driving a 2002 Tii today, you can't help but immediately notice the sporting nature of these cars.
So its really thanks to my Dad that I still own a 2002 Tii today. I am only the second owner and the car has every single document from new. Even the original service book is in the glovebox, the original purchase invoice for the car in Switzerland in 1975 is still in the file. From memory, I bought the car for about £500, needing some light restoration work from the first owner who had become a little old for the car.
At the time, I had very little money having just bought my second house so I was on quite a budget. I spent a year or so carrying out the work and carrying out some boy racer modifications. A 5 speed gearbox, over-drive, not close ratio as I wanted the taller top gear for long runs, limited slip differential, Bilstein shocks, lowered sport springs, sports exhaust, Campagnolo wheels, lightweight rear bumper, removed front bumper, additional driving lamps, sports classic seats and Motolita steering wheel. Most of the parts came out of the loft at work and the entire build without the paintwork cost about £900. Not bad even for that time.
I can’t tell you how much pleasure this car has given me and still does. Trips to Nurburgring, Spa and many runs to our house in Cornwall. Some of you will recognise young pictures of my son Zak when he was about 10 years old. Zak is about to turn 19 and has recently got our Tii back out of storage for a bit of light restoration work before some fun in her over the summer.