The 1991 BMW 850i once, allegedly, owned by basketball legend Michael Jordan is now up for auction on Bring-A-Trailer. Originally purchased new and retained by Jordan until 1995, the vintage 8 series currently shows just over 30,000 miles on its odometer, accounting for both the basketball icon’s use and that of its present owner. Painted in the striking Mauritius Blue Metallic, the E31 8 Series is a classic and an icon in the BMW lineup.
A Timeless Beauty
Laden with state-of-the-art features for its time, the BMW 850i includes an electric sunroof, dual-zone climate control, and cruise control, all indicative of its premium status. The pièce de résistance, however, lies in its 5-liter V12 engine, a formidable powerhouse generating 296 horsepower with an impressive top speed of 156 mph. That might not sound like a lot for a V12, even for its time, and it really wasn’t. There were plenty of smaller engines that made more power, especially some American V8s. However, the 850i wasn’t primarily about straight performance. Instead, it was designed to be a quick, but not mind-melting grand touring car that could cross continents with ease. So it needed a long legged engine, a comfy ride, and stock-solid stability, all of which the BMW 850i had. As you’d expect, a six-speed manual sends power to the rear wheels. It was one of the only cars in the world with a V12 engine and a manual transmission and very possibly the only front-engine one.
Featuring AC Schnitzer Parts
The 850i’s exterior boasts distinct 90s features such as pop-up headlights, fog lights, and a power-operated sunroof, while the AC Schnitzer body components, a modification from its previous owner, enhance its distinct appearance. Additionally, this E31 BMW 8 Series also features 17-inch multi-piece AC Schnitzer wheels, lending a touch of athleticism to its elegant design. In terms of performance, the BMW is well-equipped with four-wheel ventilated disc brakes, ABS, and Continental ExtremeContact tires installed in 2023.
Internally, the cabin exudes 90s luxury with power-adjustable front seats adorned in Light Parchment leather, accompanied by matching door panels and carpets. An additional touch of personalization is evident in the form of a custom ‘M AIR J’ license plate, an homage to Jordan’s iconic Air Jordan sneakers. As of now, the vehicle remains open for bidding, with the highest bid standing at $25,600 USD and six days left in the auction.