An E39 BMW 5-Series first owned by legendary comedian Sir Norman Wisdom OBE is to go under the hammer at Historics’ Ascot sale on March 2 – with no reserve.

Wisdom is well known for a special brand of humour that made him a global star of stage and screen, but was also a lifelong car enthusiast. In 1998, at the tender age of 83, he ordered a new BMW 528SE from Rydale BMW, Newport, taking delivery in early 1999. He drove ‘NMN16’ extensively, and also upgraded the already high SE specification with an Alpina body kit and split rim alloy wheels at not insignificant expense.

The car left Wisdom’s ownership and his Isle of Man home after five years and, following a very brief spell at a motor trader, it was purchased by the current vendor who has enjoyed the car since 2004. Sir Norman passed away six years later at the age of 95.

Finished in metallic Glacier Green metallic with a Stone Green over back leather interior, the car comes to market with 168,000 miles and a good history file, including a copy of the original V5 registration document showing Sir Norman Wisdom’s name as the original owner.

Details of this car and all 150-plus consignments are regularly updated on Historics website, which also features the full details of the auction – visit