The enthusiast's tied-in-knots relationship with BMW makes the Bavarians one of those brands especially ripe for nostalgic flights. That's why as soon as we saw the opening shot of Motorweek's review of the 1986 BMW 325e and a 635Csi, we let out a long sigh and thought, "Ahhhhh, I remember those days..."

The two red barons were the new entries for the year, the 325e offering a couple of extra doors for the first time, the 635CSi rounding up the powerplant's displacement compared to the 633CSi that preceded it. The inline six-cylinder in the current 335i sedan gets on with 300 horsepower; 28 years ago, the 325e made do with a 2.7-liter inline six offering 121 hp, taking 9.3 seconds to get to 60 miles per hour from a standstill. That's four seconds more than today.

Those willing to pay $41,000 for the 635CSi got a 3.4-liter inline six with 182 hp, and Motorweek praised it as a "confident handling car that does feel big and clumsy at times." The more things change, you know... Check out the video for a reminder of how BMW got to be what it is, and to hear the most unusual use of the word "oriental" we've heard in a while.


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