Titles by the Author
Rob Siegel was hooked on BMWs from the time he was 13, when a college student gave him a ride in a '71 BMW 2002 with a license plate that said GEIST (German for "spirit"). He bought his first 2002 in 1982. At last count he's owned 30 2002s. Most of these have moved through his garage and back out into circulation in better condition than when he found them.
In 1984 Rob began writing for Roundel (the magazine of the BMW Car Club of America). His Roundel column, "The Hack Mechanic," has been published monthly since 1986. Rob writes about his own experiences with buying, fixing, and loving cars in the hope that his hard-earned wisdom (which he shares with equal parts hands-on tips and quirky humor) will help his readers' keep their own cars on the road with minimal trips to the dealer service department.
Though a few air-cooled VWs and Porsches have graced his garage, and a gaggle of Suburbans have hauled his stuff, his main poison remains 70s-era BMWs; the 1973 3.0CSi he has owned for 30 years is the black hole around which all other automotive bodies revolve. Rob is slowly coming to grips with the adolescent mindset that made him buy that '73 Triumph GT6+ when he was 18, and is still atoning for the powder blue '63 Rambler Classic he left by the side of the road in 1981.
At present, Rob owns 13 cars, including the ever-loyal '73 3.0CSi, three 2002tiis, a '72 Bavaria, a Euro '79 635CSi, an '87 E30 325is, a '99 Z3, a '99 Z3 M Coupe, the daily driver 2003 530i stick sport, the Suburban (basically a self-propelled parts closet), his wife's Honda Fit, and a 1974 Lotus Europa Twin Cam Special that shows he clearly learned nothing from owning the GT6+.
In both his column and his books for Bentley Publishers, Rob has concentrated on practical solutions that can be achieved with a minimum of expensive tools. His new book The Hack Mechanic Guide to European Automotive Electrical Systems continues this tradition by showing readers that electrical issues are nothing to be afraid of.