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Where Do My Ratings Come From?

October 6th, 2010
M Coupe Rating Scale

M Coupe Rating Scale

Many people have asked how I determine my ratings. Well, the star ratings on the sale listings are really just my off-the-cuff impressions of the coupe and are relatively subjective, but I do have some rules I try to follow. Here are my general guidelines.

1 star – Needs significant body or mechanical work
2 star – Repaired salvage, in need of lots of TLC, simple mechanical issues
3 star – Average condition, possibly needing some mechanical or aesthetic work but nothing significant
4 star – Above average condition and well sorted mechanically
5 star – Like it drove off the showroom floor yesterday. Usually reserved for the ultra-low mileage and garage queen/show cars. I also need lots of good photos or to see it in person before I’ll give a coupe 5 stars.

1 star – 1 of 100+
2 star – 1 of 50+
3 star – 1 of 25+
4 star – 1 of 5+
5 star – 1 of less than 5
I adjust the ratings somewhat based on how often I see them for sale. For example, I often add a star for alpine white and steel gray which are not super rare numbers-wise but don’t come up for sale very often. I also sometimes add a star for S54 coupes in color combinations also available with S52s. There are other instances when significant modifications justify increased rarity like an S50 engine swap or Dinan signature certificate.

1 star – Priced way over what it should be and should never sell at asking price
2 star – Priced a little bit over what I think it’s worth based on year, condition, mileage, modifications, etc.
3 star – Priced in the neighborhood of where I would recommend someone to price it at
4 star – Priced at what I would consider a really good deal
5 star – Priced in such a way that the buyer is basically stealing it
This is the most subjective of the ratings as different things are worth more to different people. Sometimes coupes to which I give 2 stars sell really fast and others I think are great deals sit on the market a while. Almost all my value ratings will fall between 2 and 4 stars with the only rare exceptions being those that are $10k over- or under-priced (in my opinion).

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