What would you pay for a 1988 E30-generation BMW M3 in pristine condition? Well, a buyer in the United States has just responded to that very question ... with a R4,1-million answer.

Yes, this low-mileage E30-generation M3 has just sold for $250 000 (which works out to some R4 118 050 at the prevailing exchange rate) on bringatrailer.com. After 59 bids, a user called “SouthFloridaWings” came out on top.

Finished in Zinnoberrot exterior paint, chassis number WBSAK0300J2196644 has just 8 000 miles (less than 13 000 km) on the clock and is thought to have been sold new in California, remaining with the original owner until his passing in the mid-1990s.

According to bringatrailer.com, the M3 was then garaged and “driven occasionally” by the original owner’s family before being acquired by the latest seller in 2010 and moved to Missouri.

An M3 Sport Evolution rear spoiler, front splitter and tow-hook cover plus 15-inch wheels wrapped in Dunlop Direzza DZ102 rubber were added, although the factory wheels and rear spoiler as well as service records and owner’s manuals were included with the sale.

The interior is finished in Natural Tan leather with matching carpets and door panels, a black dash and centre console, and factory BMW-embossed floor mats. A factory M-Tech 1 steering wheel is also present.

As a reminder, power comes from the Munich-based firm’s 2,3-litre four-cylinder (S14B23) engine, driving the rear axle via a Getrag G265 five-speed manual gearbox.

The E30 M3, of course, wasn’t available here in South Africa; instead we had the SA-only 333i and 325iS.