Ends on 01.Jan, 2024
not sold / reserve not met
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description parameters bid comments
  • One of only 459 examples of this iconic pre-war race cars built
  • Recreation of the body and chassis that needed to be replaced in USA in the 90's
  • Specially prepared engine for the Mille Miglia
  • Mille Miglia wheels with brakes
  • Aluminium racing finned sump
  • US title and history, customs documents and a Czech historic registration
  • FIVA card issued in 2023
  • Complete with original tools (very rare)
  • One of the most successful race-cars before WWII, supercar of its era
  • Considered one of the most important cars built in the 20th century
  • Comes from a great car collection
  • Not only Mille Miglia eligible, this model was the overall winner in 1940
  • After a recent service and recently issued historic registration plates
  • Partly exchange would be also acceptable
  • All documents were checked and the car was photographed personally by Auctomobile
  • Other features: possibility of assisting with registration, transport, insurance, storage and Trusted Checkout payment
  • Please note that this car will be available for viewing by prior appointment in Brno, Czechia

The Iconic 1938 BMW 328 Roadster: A Timeless Automotive Marvel


In the annals of automotive history, there are certain vehicles that stand out as true icons of their time, leaving an indelible mark on the industry. Among them is the legendary 1938 BMW 328 Roadster, a masterpiece that epitomizes the blend of performance, elegance, and innovation. As a triumph of German engineering, this classic roadster has etched its name in the hearts of car enthusiasts worldwide, becoming a symbol of BMW's early prowess and cementing its legacy in the automotive world.

Design and Aesthetics

The 1938 BMW 328 Roadster possesses a design that exudes timeless elegance. Its sleek, aerodynamic lines are characterized by a long, graceful hood, gently sloping fenders, and a curvaceous body, making it a truly captivating sight. With its low-slung stance, the 328 Roadster showcases the perfect balance between form and function, accentuating both its aesthetic appeal and its performance capabilities.

Under the Hood

What truly sets the 1938 BMW 328 Roadster apart is its impressive performance capabilities, especially considering the era in which it was produced. The heart of this iconic roadster lies in its advanced engineering and innovative design. Powered by a 2.0-liter, straight-six engine, the 328 Roadster produced an astonishing 80 horsepower, a remarkable feat for its time. The lightweight construction, combined with the engine's responsiveness, allowed the car to reach a top speed of approximately 100 mph (160 km/h), making it one of the fastest cars of its era.

Racing Legacy

The 1938 BMW 328 Roadster's claim to fame is not just based on its exceptional design and performance; it also boasts an impressive racing pedigree. The roadster achieved numerous victories in motorsport events, cementing its status as a formidable contender on the racetrack. Notably, it triumphed in the 1940 Mille Miglia, a grueling 1,000-mile endurance race in Italy, securing a class win and second place overall. This success showcased the roadster's reliability, handling, and speed, elevating its reputation and bolstering BMW's standing as a performance-oriented automaker.

Innovation and Technological Advancements

The 1938 BMW 328 Roadster featured several groundbreaking innovations that helped solidify its status as a technological marvel. The car's lightweight design utilized aluminum for the body panels and a tubular space frame, contributing to its remarkable agility and handling characteristics. Furthermore, the engine incorporated hemispherical combustion chambers, twin carburetors, and a cross-flow cylinder head, enabling the 328 Roadster to achieve exceptional power output for its displacement. These advancements showcased BMW's commitment to pushing the boundaries of automotive engineering and performance.

Enduring Legacy

Even after nearly a century, the 1938 BMW 328 Roadster continues to captivate car enthusiasts and collectors worldwide. Its rarity, timeless design, and historic significance make it a highly sought-after classic car. The 328 Roadster's influence can be seen in modern BMW models, as its engineering principles and performance DNA have been passed down through the generations.


The 1938 BMW 328 Roadster remains an automotive icon that epitomizes the harmonious blend of elegance, performance, and innovation. Its design, performance capabilities, and racing success have solidified its place in history as a true masterpiece of German engineering. As a testament to BMW's enduring legacy, the 328 Roadster continues to inspire and fascinate enthusiasts worldwide, reminding us of the profound impact a single vehicle can have on the automotive landscape.

According to the earliest available record, chassis 85223 was purchased in 1955 by Mr. Stanley V. Willhight, a watchmaker living in Coupeville, Washington, USA, then aged 41. Accounts of the late Mr. Willhight reveal him to have been very much the Renaissance man, not only a car enthusiast and skilled horologist, but also a keen violinist and amateur artist, with widespread interests encompassing architecture, astronomy, Egyptology, local history and maritime history. The car was later owned by Mr. Van Bibber and Mr. Tom Graham, who got the car in disassembled condition and started later the renovation of the car while still in the USA with a rebuilt of the body and the chassis.

This car came from USA to Czechia in 2014 with its former US title and all customs cleared. It was registered in Czechia as a historic vehicle and a rebuilt of the engine has been performed. The car has a specially prepared engine. The engine comes also with original Solex carburettors. It was built to race in the Mille Miglia a few years ago, unfortunately the owner did not race it due to health reasons. He also added special light magnesium Mille Miglia wheels, where the brakes are directly built into the wheels for a quicker change during a race. The installed transmission is not original anymore, it has now a 4-speed Volvo gearbox for a quicker shifting, but the original transmission is included in the sale. It has also an additional oil cooler, the ventilator cooler is also included in the sale as well as spare wheel screws. It has an aluminium racing finned sump to give the car better oil cooling under extreme racing loads. Those are the little details on the car, for better performance and durability.The car is perfect mechanical condition, it runs absolutely perfect. It comes also with the original BMW tools, which is very rare to see in a pre-war car.

This car comes for a second time for a sale. The first sale of the car was cancelled due to new found information about the replacement of the body and chassis in the USA. The car was found in USA in 90's in disambled condition and then recreated. The estimate was reduced due to this information and the car will be now sold again.





Production date1938
Body TypeRoadster
Engine1.971 ccm, 80 PS, I6
SteeringLeft Hand Drive
LayoutRear Wheel Drive
Color - exteriorIvory White
Color - interiorDark Blue
Miles/Kilometers shown1.099 km
Chassis / VIN85223
Location - CountryCzechia
Location - CityBrno


2-door roadster body type; RWD (rear-wheel drive), manual 4-speed gearbox; gasoline (petrol) engine with displacement: 1971 cm3, advertised power: 59 kW / 79 hp / 80 PS; characteristic dimensions: outside length: 3900 mm, width: 1550 mm, wheelbase: 2400 mm; reference weights: base curb weight: 830 kg; top speed: 150 km/h (93 mph)

Auction finished

LIVE auction from 01.Jan, 2024 08:00:00 (CET) to 01.Jan, 2024 19:00:00 (CET)

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