When the Z07 concept car was unveiled to the world at the 1997 Tokyo Auto Show, the oohs and aahs it elicited were so great that BMW decided to bring it to production. As an homage to the BMW 507, a 1950s roadster with a 3.2-liter V-8 and style that rivaled a certain gull-winged German competitor, the $128,000 Z8 hit the streets for 1999 largely faithful to the Z07 concept. In five years, BMW produced 5,703 Z8s, with 2,543 coming to the U.S.
According to RM Sotheby's, Larry Ellison, the CEO of Oracle, raved to Jobs that the Z8 was the epitome of German thinking, which matched nicely with Apple's modus operandi. And that was true. The Z8 featured a 50/50 combination of form/function yet wasn't a one-trick show pony: Its 394-horsepower 4.9-liter V8 (shared with the M5) and under-the-skin components offered performance that stood up to its contemporaries — including Ferrari.
This particular Z8 was built on April 1, 2000, and was delivered to Jobs on Oct 6. He kept it through 2003 before selling it to its current owner. The latter kept it for one year but soon regretted the decision to sell, managing to score it again 18 months later. Now showing 15,200 miles, this Z8 includes key accessories like the standard hardtop and stand, car cover and, by golly, a signature BMW/Motorola flip phone. Also included are registration papers, owner's manuals, and service records.
Jobs' Z8 is the most common color combination of Titanium Silver with Black interior (with 1,895 built), and the signature combination that perfectly presents its lines and form — as clean and uncluttered as the original iPod that would debut a year later. NADA Guides lists a 2000 Z8 being worth close to $200,000 on average, but RM Sotheby's estimates this car's ownership history will push it towards $300,000 - 400,000 at its New York "ICONS" auction on Dec. 6.
That's quite the bargain compared to a 1957 507.