BMW E30 M3 Roberto Ravaglia
- Mileage: 41,990
- Year: 1989
- MOT Expiry: June 2020
- Exterior Colour: Misano Red
- Interior Colour: Anthracite M-Technic Cloth
- Top speed: 150
- 0-60mph: 6.7
- BHP: 215
- Transmission: 5-Speed Dogleg Manual
- Engine Capacity: 2302cc
- Engine Configuration: 4 In-line
In order to celebrate the many competition victories of factory drivers Johnny Cecotto and Roberto Ravaglia, BMW produced two special versions of the E30 M3 during 1989 that were named in their honour. These models introduced the 215hp version of the catalyst-equipped 2.3-litre S14 engine, still rated at 170 lb/ft of torque (though now peaking at a slightly lower 4,600rpm). This engine, which would become standardised on European-spec M3s beginning in September of 1989, can be identified in the Ravaglia/Cecotto by the body-coloured valve cover and plenum chamber.
Instead of the M3 Johnny Cecotto edition, the UK market received only the Roberto Ravaglia edition, which was essentially an identical car except for the signature of a different BMW factory race driver on the numbered plaque. A total of just 25 examples were produced, 16 in Misano Red (236) and 9 in Nogaro Silver metallic (243).
The Ravaglia featured the front and rear spoilers of the Evo II and was further distinguished by its thinner rear window glass and 16-inch alloy wheels with unique black centres. On the inside, the standard sport seats were trimmed in a special Anthracite or Silver M-Technic cloth with Bison leather bolsters. Additional special features included door sill plates with a colour ‘M3’ insignia, an M footrest for the driver, and a plaque on the centre console that displayed the signature of Roberto Ravaglia. The cars were further equipped with a green-tinted windshield stripe, electric windows, internal headlight aim adjustment, on-board computer II, and cassette storage box.
Misano Red paintwork, Anthracite M-Technic cloth with black Bison leather bolsters, Roberto Ravaglia Numbered plaque, 16-inch cross-spoke alloy wheels with black centres, Evolution II front chin spoiler, Evolution II rear lip spoiler, ‘M3’ door sill plates, M driver footrest, Electric windows, On-board computer II, Cassette storage, Front fog lights, Fire extinguisher, Alloy spare wheel, BMW toolkit, BMW first aid kit, Warning triangle, Car cover.
This has to be one of the cleanest, most original E30 M3s we’ve ever had the pleasure of selling here at 4 Star, and as one of just 25 Roberto Ravaglia editions it’s extremely rare too. Just 16 examples were supplied in gorgeous Misano Red – definitely one of the best M3 colours – and the paintwork remains in stunning condition, with a great shine to every panel. Even on close inspection there are few blemishes to speak of, the only real imperfections being some expected light chips towards the front end. The remainder of the body is factory-fresh with even panel gaps, pristine rubber trims, and BMW-stamped glass all round. A true collector’s piece, in outstanding show condition.
Much like its Johnny Cecotto twin, the Roberto Ravaglia was gifted special M-Technic cloth with Bison Leather bolsters, which are anthracite and black in this example. Open the door and you’re still greeted by that new car smell. Original interiors of this age and in this condition do not come around often. The bolsters are hardly worn, and the stunning M cloth appears as new.
Glancing across the driver-focused dash you’ll find a pristine finish to every component. Everything feels really solid to the touch, with no wear or marking to report. Commonly worn items like the steering wheel and gear knob retain a lovely satin sheen, and the carpets are protected in the footwells by a set of tailored overmats. The boot area is extremely clean and still present with the complete BMW toolkit, first aid kit, warning triangle, and matching spare wheel.
ENGINE & TRANSMISSION
The E30 M3’s S14 engine was designed for racing applications and was therefore compact and high-revving. Special features included individual throttle plates for each cylinder, machined intake and exhaust ports, and a crankshaft with eight counterweights. The Ravaglia edition’s catalyst-equipped S14 produced 215hp at 6,750rpm and 170 lb/ft of torque at 4,600rpm.
As to be expected the engine bay of this example is exceptionally clean throughout. Everything appears really fresh with no signs of any corrosion, damage or poor repair to be found. Both the plenum chamber and valve cover are still wearing their factory Misano Red paint, and traces of original protective wax can also be found on some components. All in all, a real treat for the enthusiast.
WHEELS, TYRES & BRAKES
Sitting on its original 16-inch BBS the M3 looks magnificent. The wheels are correctly finished in black with contrasting silver rims and centre nuts, a feature unique to the Ravaglia and Cecotto editions. On very close inspection there is some light marking to report but nothing worthy of a refurb in our opinion. The alloys are shod in a matching set of Continental Sport Contact tyres, all with plenty of tread remaining. The pads and discs show plenty of life left having been replaced all round at 34k miles.
This rare Ravaglia M3 was first registered in August ‘89 and was supplied new by BMW in Doncaster. Since that time it has driven just 41k miles in the hands of only three careful keepers, with the current owner having purchased the car way back in 2007.
This example has clearly been treasured all its life, never needing any restorative work or mechanical re-commissioning. All aspects of the car are amazingly original, the only aftermarket additions being a stainless steel exhaust and later-style radio head unit. The History File is complete the original document pack, service booklet, and a raft of invoices. Services have been carried out at the following mileages: 1k, 5k, 17k, 24k, 31k, 34k, 36k, 38k, 39k, 40k, 41k, 41k, and most recently again at 41k miles in May 2019.
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