Karosserie Baur

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Baur is a Karosserie or coachbuilder in Stuttgart, Germany, which has been building BMW convertibles since the 30's. Currently, they are the body and assembly works for IVM Automotive, a member the Ed Group. They enjoy an excellent reputation for quality and do prototype work for many manufacturers such as Porsche, Audi and Ford.

The Baur family received a patent for the design of a folding top for luxury automobiles about the time BMW was building the first car with the BMW name.

Baur was established in 1910 and produced, among others, 1682 1600-2 Cabriolets, 200 2002 Cabriolets, 2597 E110 700 Sport Cabriolets and most of the 450 or so M1's (after Lamborghini could not fulfil its contractual obligations).

In 1971 they began production of the safer "targa" style body with the 2002. (Targa was a registered Porsche name, so they had to call it something else) Originally an after market option available through BMW dealers, the E21 3 series TC1 was built with full factory authorization, and covered in the factory warranty. The roll-bar version or "Top Cabrio" (TC) continued with the E30 TC2 even after Baur developed the BMW E30 Convertible design for BMW, and which BMW built.

The Opel Kadett C Aero was produced from 1976 to 1978, with a Baur top.

Then there was the Baur TC3 of 1987, which was stopped by the production of the BMW Z1. The cars were aimed at the same market.

Even though BMW now had its own E36 convertible, you could still get an E36 Baur TC4 conversion, although this iteration was based on the E36 four-door and featured fixed door frames[1].

These TC cars can be built for the owner at any time, after-market; you supply the car to be converted.

Interestingly enough, all Porsche 959's were actually produced at Baur, not at Porsche, on an assembly line with Porsche inspectors overseeing the finished bodies. Most of Porsche's special order interior leather work was also done by the workers at Baur.

At one time all suspension components for the Audi Quattro suspension unique to that model were produced by robot welding equipment at Baur.

In 2002, the Baur G-Cabrio XL, a convertible based on the Mercedes-Benz G-Class was shown at the Geneva Auto Show.


  1. Eberhard Kittler: Deutsche Autos seit 1990, vol. 5. Motorbuch Verlag, Stuttgart 2001, ISBN 3-613-02131-5, p. 262.

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