The Werk Shop - Professional BMW Restoration, BMW Preservation and BMW Service by Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen's shop in Lake Bluff - just north of Chicago, Illinois.  Serving the BMW enthusiast.
The Werk Shop - BMW Restoration and Automotive Service in Lake Bluff, Illinois
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Rare and Special BMWs
Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen present The Werk Shop - BMW Service and BMW Restoration Services : BMW Restorations Registry : Red 503 Cabriolet Gallery - Don 's 1956 BMW 503 Cabriolet

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Red 503 Cabriolet
 
Owner : Don
Year/Model : 1956 BMW 503 Cabriolet (VIN # : 69081)
Project End Date : 5/1/2011
About this restoration : We started the restoration of this car a couple of years ago and have now completed it. The aluminum body has been completely reworked. After winning its class at the Hilton head concours in 2011, It has just sold via the RM auction in 2012 where it will be going home to Germany.

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Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen present The Werk Shop - BMW Service and BMW Restoration Services : BMW Restorations Registry : 1947 Mille Miglia Special Gallery - Menno's 1935 315 Chassis with One Off Body

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1947 Mille Miglia Special
 
Owner : Menno
Year/Model : 1935 315 Chassis with One Off Body (VIN # : 67556)
 
About this restoration : Menno found this rare old race car in Belgium and asked us to have it brought back to our shop for a complete restoration. It was built during World War II as a covert operation in a small garage by the mechanic and the driver who funded the project. Both planned on running the car in the first Mille Miglia race after the war ended. They used a 315 chassis and re-bodied the car in a sleek one off style. The car ran the 1947 Mille Miglia with number 193 across its nose and on each door. Cesare Beretta was the driver, and Alberto Garatti the co-driver/mechanic. The pair made it past the first check point at Padova and then retired with mechanical problems. When the restoration is completed, Menno plans to take the car back to Italy and run the Mille Miglia retro race.

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Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen present The Werk Shop - BMW Service and BMW Restoration Services : BMW Restorations Registry : 3200CS Gallery - Don's 1965 BMW 3200CS Coupe

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3200CS
 
Owner : Don
Year/Model : 1965 BMW 3200CS Coupe (VIN # : 76528)
 
About this restoration : We built this car some time ago (after rescuing her from a junk yard) and she has won first place in every Concours she has been entered in. This example is probably the finest in the world and is very rare as only 603 were made. This beautiful piece of BMW history is for sale and was last seen at the 2004 BMW Oktoberfest in Pasadena, California. Call Don for details.

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Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen present The Werk Shop - BMW Service and BMW Restoration Services : BMW Restorations Registry : BARN FIND 327 Gallery - Karra's 1938 327

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BARN FIND 327
 
Owner : Karra
Year/Model : 1938 327
 
About this restoration : BARN FIND – NOT SEEN IN 40 YEARS

We found this 1938 BMW 327 buried in a barn in Ohio. This rare car is the most beautiful of all pre-war BMWs. It's restoration is scheduled to begin in 2012.

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Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen present The Werk Shop - BMW Service and BMW Restoration Services : BMW Restorations Registry : BARN FIND 503 Gallery - Karra's 1958 503

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BARN FIND 503
 
Owner : Karra
Year/Model : 1958 503 (VIN # : 69283)
 
About this restoration : 1958 BMW 503 Cabriolet that we literally took out of a barn in Ohio. This rare treasure, a series II car and 1 of only 129 produced, is currently undergoing a full concours restoration. Karra plans to take her 503 to Pebble Beach once it's completed.

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Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen present The Werk Shop - BMW Service and BMW Restoration Services : BMW Restorations Registry : BMW 507 Gallery - Otto's 1958 507

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BMW 507
 
Owner : Otto
Year/Model : 1958 507 (VIN # : 70046)
 
About this restoration : Born and raised in Germany, Otto has a deep passion for BMWs. He has more than a few and bought his 507 over 40 years ago with Corvette engine power. Having raised three sons on the East Coast he always had a desire to share his cars with his boys. He spent many years searching out the correct 507 engine in Germany and had it rebuilt locally. He collected various parts and even had the interior re-done but never got the car on the road. When the BMW Vintage Club announced their tour through Northern California, Otto contacted us and asked if we could paint the body and put his car together with all the items he had assembled. The schedule and his budget were both very tight but we got the job accomplished.


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Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen present The Werk Shop - BMW Service and BMW Restoration Services : BMW Restorations Registry : Estate Wagon Gallery - David's 1974 3.0Si Estate Wagon

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Estate Wagon
 
Owner : David
Year/Model : 1974 3.0Si Estate Wagon (VIN # : 3270603)
 
About this restoration : David from England has requested we bring this rare BMW Estate Wagon back to it's former stature. It was being restored by a shop in England for many years when David pulled the project away from them because he was not happy with the quality, nor the length of time that had passed. We have since started this restoration, and have been asked by David to start from scratch.

Being one of only 19 ever made, we knew parts for this vehicle would be an issue. As luck would have it, we serendipitously found a parts car in England that we had shipping over to our shop.

To get a better perspective on why enthusiasts from around the world are choosing to restore in the U.S. (and learn a little more about what makes them so passionate about the marque), we asked David to share his take on the following four questions:

1. To what do you attribute your passion for cars and what's the attraction to BMW as a mark?
2. What is it about THIS car (the one you're currently restoring) that made it a "must-have" to restore and add to your collection?
3. Why did you choose The WerkShop to handle the project for you and why did you choose to have the car restored in the U.S.?
4. If you could add any other BMW to your collection, which would you choose to restore next?

Here’s what he told us…

1. I have no idea of where my passion for cars came from. My mother used to attribute it to having driving lessons while she was pregnant with me (and mothers always know best)! My interest in BMWs goes back to the early 70s when a wealthy friend of my father’s bought one of the very first 2500 E3s and then took me out in it and did 100mph! I was totally hooked by the whole experience and the vision of these machines flying down the autobahns was irresistible. Remember, the British motor industry was turning out some pretty awful stuff at that time!

2. 3 Litre E3s have always been special to me. Smooth, fast and because of the high pricing at the time, very rare in the UK. We didn’t have a Max Hoffman trying to get the prices down! E3 wagons were the rarest of the rare, used only by BMW Motorsport and a few lucky gentry. A bit like the legendary 250bhp Alpina 3.0Si of 1973. People knew it existed but nobody had ever seen one!

3. I chose The WerkShop after reading an article in a BMW magazine. Their workmanship and attention to detail seemed to be of the standard that I was looking for. I didn’t know of anyone in the UK who took classic BMWs quite so seriously.

4. The only other BMW of any age that I would add to my collection is a late 3.0CSi. The 3.0CSL may be more sought after, but I can relate more closely to the CSi and besides, I wouldn’t have to worry about the aluminium panels. It’s more usable and not that much slower.

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Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen present The Werk Shop - BMW Service and BMW Restoration Services : BMW Restorations Registry : House Collection - 1800 Ti/SA Gallery - Don Dethlefsen's 1965 BMW 1800 Ti/SA

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House Collection - 1800 Ti/SA
 
Owner : Don Dethlefsen
Year/Model : 1965 BMW 1800 Ti/SA (VIN # : 995146)
 
About this restoration : Only 200 made and all as factory race cars! It took five years of searching to find this donor and then we restored her to better-than-new condition. She is probably the finest example in the world and has won first place in every Concours she has been entered. She has run the Copperstate 1000 and the BMW 2004 Vintage Marathon, where the car won the "Most Desired BMW" award.

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Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen present The Werk Shop - BMW Service and BMW Restoration Services : BMW Restorations Registry : Leichtgewichts Gallery - Brian's 1995 M3

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Leichtgewichts
 
Owner : Brian
Year/Model : 1995 M3 (VIN # : EH07421)
 
About this restoration : The E36, 3 series “Leichtgewichts” is an interesting story and an even more interesting car. When Erik Wensberg was handling the Motorsport efforts for BMW NA and shortly after PTG started racing the E36 chassis, Erik convinced the folks in Munich to make a small run of special “Lightweight” cars for the newly formed BMW CCA Club Racing program, and “Uber Brand Enthusiasts” in general, just as Porsche has done so effectively for so many years.

The cars were conceived void of creature comforts; no radio, no AC, no sun roof, no sound deading materials, no undercoating, etc. thereby saving nearly 200 LBS from the stock production car. They were all painted White and all had a Motorsport Flag design on the driver’s side front hood and the passenger side rear trunk. Initially, only 85 cars were to be made, but in the end somewhere around 200-210 were produced; BMW has never published the exact number.

What is not commonly known about the project is that an extended negotiation over content, or lack of same & US DOT legality led to the entire project being delayed one full model year. This was terrible news as the racing season would start in some two months, and many IMSA Fire hawk Teams were waiting for delivery, and the racing exposure was a key facet of creating dealer and consumer demand for the car. A quick compromise was reached where in near desperation , Wensberg negotiated with M to build ten unregister able prototype versions -by hand- so they could be sold to the race teams and hit the track. But by then the real damage had already been done, as the remaining production cars were destined to arrive as Model year 95 vehicles, in the late fall, as most all dealers were waiting for their ’96 models.

The U.S. BMW dealer network had some 400 dealers at the time, so not every Dealer received this model and those that did only could get one car. The retail price was $36,500.00, and a few of the early sales were over sticker. However, the car did not find a home in Club Racing as the series was to new and the car was too expensive for the new Club Racers. Nearing the end of the model year, some Dealers ended up getting “stuck” with their allotted car and many were sold at below sticker price, some as low as $27,000.

Several years later the car became recognized for what it really was and Club Racers began hunting them down, many became very competitive race cars. They also became very collectable and are an awesome street machine. Many years after their intro, Brian wanted to add one to his collection and hunted for some time before finding a very low mileage example. We installed all the special parts that came with the car, which were in cardboard boxes in the trunk. The rear wing, along with a baffled racing oil pan, front sub member strut brace and a trick retractable racing front splitter. As none of these parts were DOT tested or eligible, they were delivered in the truck of the car for “off road use only”. One of many hoops the authorities put us through before the project was completed. We then serviced it, repaired a few faults, and gave it a concours detailing. It now resides in his collection in Denver, CO.

As a side note; I drove this car some 200 miles on all types of roads before the delivery and must say, for me, it just may be the best BMW drive I have experienced, a real race car that can be driven on the street. So many were used up as race cars that few choice examples exist today. Today Wensberg casually refers to the project as “the great idea that almost got me fired before we even got started with building M in this country.”


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Mike Marijanovic and Don Dethlefsen present The Werk Shop - BMW Service and BMW Restoration Services : BMW Restorations Registry : Red E30 Gallery - John's 1988 M3

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Red E30
 
Owner : John
Year/Model : 1988 M3
 
About this restoration : John has a true passion for BMWs. After parting with his 1974 BMW 3.0CSL a short while ago, he was in need of filling the seemingly ever-expanding void that was left. After many months of hunting around, a package deal crossed John’s path. He was offered an E30 M3, and a 2002 Turbo for a fair price. Both cars needed extensive work to bring them up to John’s standards. Thankfully, he was confident in The Werk Shop’s abilities, and he felt comfortable that everything would be done exactly as requested. After he finalized the deal, he wanted us to start with the M3 first. We completely rebuilt the motor, and repaired several other mechanical items. We were also instructed to remove a pin stripe that had been placed on the body, and fix the paint issues that John identified with the car. After all the work was completed; the test drives, and break-in period were done. John finally had a chance to be reunited with this powerful red machine. Needless to say, the two are now inseparable.

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