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3-Series (E21, E30) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1975-1983 and 1984-1991 line. Specific models: BMW 315, BMW 316, BMW 318, BMW 318i, BMW 320/4, BMW 320i, BMW 320/6, BMW 323i, BMW 320i. E30 Family models include: BMW 325e, BMW 325i, BMW 325is, BMW 325ix.

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Old 09-10-2004, 08:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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M'kay, here we go. This is my father's 1992 325i cabriolet, and I'm selling it for him...or maybe I'm keeping it. That's why I'm here...looking for opinions.

I've been driving this car around for a couple of weeks, and I like it a lot. I'm not much of one for convertibles, but I'm liking the feel of the car, the classic look of the E30, well, the whole package....and I've really missed having a stickshift. Dad's offering it to me at a reasonable discount to what he wants it sold to a third party for, but I still don't know if it's worth it. If I ended up keeping it, it would share time as a daily driver with my 1994 Honda Accord (meaning, it would be the fair-weather driver).

Here are some details:

110,000 miles, five speed manual. All stock, that I can tell. Idles a little rough; probably just needs valve adjustment and new plugs, which I'm capable of. I'm not experienced in analyzing engine performance, but it seems to run just fine...it accelerates smoothly, has nice power above 3000 rpm, shifts fairly well, and feels pretty bulletproof. The last inspection was a II, about 7,000 miles and (believe it or not) five years ago. I got the oil and filter changed (at a dealership) immediately. The service record book is spotty, but I think it's just because my father didn't know to hand it over to the service guys. There are like three stamps in there.

The body is in overall good condition; it doesn't appear to have ever been in any sort of mishap. All of the VIN tags match. There are a handful of sheet metal dents, but nothing horrific. The rear deck has a number of spots where the clearcoat has peeled off, but the paint beneath it seems fine...see the pic below. There are two spots on the hood and rear deck where the paint has chipped through to the metal, and those points show rust, but no spot is bigger than an eighth of an inch in diameter. There are scratches in the topcoat / paint, but nothing that can't be fixed with elbow grease.

The dash is perfect. In fact, the whole of the instrument cluster / radio / climate control / glovebox area is in excellent shape.

The A/C works fine. The cruise control works fine.

Vinyl interior parts are not *awful*, but are probably the worst looking parts of the car. There are several nicks, slits, holes, divots, etc., and the door panels are starting to separate on the driver's side. The e-brake trim has three screws driven through it where the cell phone used to be mounted, and looks like shite. Rear ashtray is broke.

The leather is, I think, in overall great shape, considering it's 12 years old. The standard split at the back of the rear seat, where the tops of the seats are also dried. The outer side supports of the front seats are getting wrinkled / dried / showing some white, but there are not rips or tears anywhere.

Convertible top is genuine BMW, and has been manualized. The fabric itself is in really good shape, except for a small spot of wear where the storage compartment lid rubbed on the top when it opened, and some frays around the rear window. The window itself has a dark spot on each side (see pic), is moderately foggy, and has one or two short hairline cracks.

What I've done since picking it up: oil and filter change, new Yokohama Avid H4S tires (the old ones were dry-rotted), and a detail.

Things that I believe need to be fixed (and part cost guesses): guibo ($30), brake sensor ($10?), OBC light panel ($30), power antenna insert ($30), fog light ($50), various switches (~$70), driver's side lock cylinder ($40), front and rear emblems ($20). I don't think any of these are beyond my abilities...I've changed out timing belts and done cylinder head sets before, and the M20 looks, well, less complicated.

Pics...

Some dents visible in front fender...


Rear window foggy, and surrounding top fraying a bit...


That lower lip is missing, isn't it?


Clearcoat peel spots...


Just detailed...need to replace those awful carpet pads...


Driver's seat...not worn too bad...


Small split and dryness above the rear seat...


The console...factory radio (no CD)...all glisteny from an overapplication of vinyl "protectant"...


Go topless!


So, I haven't told you how much dear old Dad wants for it yet. I've put $600 into it so far (tires, alignment, oil & filter change, detail, MD state inspection). He wants $4,900 after my expenses. He'll sell it to me for $3,900 (with no credit for my expenses, so it would cost me, actually, $4,500 as it sits right now).

So? Whatcha think?

Thanks!

--Chris
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Old 09-10-2004, 08:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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im not a cab fan but id say its worth around $4g's to $4500 so if you like it buy it! hah
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Old 09-10-2004, 08:36 PM   #3 (permalink)
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not sure if i gave you one of these yet but here goes


To the wonderful BMW forums!!!!!!! Stick around..we're all good people

But im not making fun of the people with free cars from the rents...i just envy you...
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Kyle Sutherland

1995 BMW 540i/6:
The Calypso Beast Vid 0-70ish
1987 BMW 325es: Face & Butt Lifted/M50tu Swapped*Sold*
1985 VW Scirocco: Too many mods, money pit*Sold*
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Old 09-10-2004, 08:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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BTW mad props to your dad i must say for making you buy it and not just handing it down... im tired of all these kids getting easy street when i had it like you
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1995 BMW 540i/6:
The Calypso Beast Vid 0-70ish
1987 BMW 325es: Face & Butt Lifted/M50tu Swapped*Sold*
1985 VW Scirocco: Too many mods, money pit*Sold*
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Old 09-10-2004, 08:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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the car looks great man! of course you would expect a couple of paintwork/interior bad spots at that age but i reckon you should go for it. they are very rewarding cars to own, and will put a smile on your face every time you drive it. not to mention they still look and drive sweet. and welcome!
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Old 09-10-2004, 10:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
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i dont like cabs and i dont like green cars...but thats just me...if ur happy driving it than go for it
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Old 09-11-2004, 09:01 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Beautiful...I would definitly buy it!!
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91 BMW 325 IX
BLACK
2 DOOR
5 SPEED
THE MORE RARE IT IS THE MORE IT COSTS TO FIX!

95 BMW 325 IS
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LET THE MODS BEGIN
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Old 09-11-2004, 10:33 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I just bought that exact same car except mine is an automagic. It's for my wife when she moves back to the US from Germany, to the DC area.

Fun thing is I only paid $2500.00 for mine due to auto top was broke so made it a manual and the valves were clattering away. Spent 15 minutes adjusting them and got myself a bargin. I just looked at buying a Wiesmann hardtop for it in Germany, I need to drive up to Bremen to pick it up.

I believe Kelly blue box on these is still about $6k so if it good other wise buy it. In standard they are rare as most iC's were slushboxes and were more expensive than the mighty E30 M3 at close to $37k new. Forgot to mention mine was a 92 also and has 103,210 on the odo.
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Old 09-13-2004, 12:13 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Thanks for the replies...and the welcome!

I'm still deciding; his price was a little above what I originally thought I would pay, but it *does* seem to be a good price anyway.

Dad *did* give me my first car, but it wasn't much to give...a 1983 Mitsubishi Cordia. Miss that car. I sold it for $250 when it had 262,000 miles on it, when I graduated from college in 1992.

--Chris
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Old 09-13-2004, 04:57 AM   #10 (permalink)
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thats in incredible condition esp being convertible. id say buy it. but you should also look into a hard top... just my opinion.
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Old 09-13-2004, 09:47 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally posted by e30devo@Sep 13 2004, 05:37 AM
thats in incredible condition esp being convertible. id say buy it. but you should also look into a hard top... just my opinion.
I was thinking that, too. There's one on eBay right now...what's a good price for a hardtop in excellent condition? Are they available aftermarket at all?

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Old 09-13-2004, 10:47 PM   #12 (permalink)
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well thats really cool that u had to buy it instead of getting it free, and it is very clean kept!

:P :lol:
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Old 09-14-2004, 12:02 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Thats a fine car in exelent condition ! i would buy it if I where you !

I just imported a 1991 320i convertible from germany to denmark and i love this car

But be really happy that you are living in US, here in demark i gave 19200$ all inclusive !!! the danish goverment loves taxes and so on n
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Old 09-14-2004, 01:17 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I think I'll be keeping it. At least until the springtime, when the market for cabs gets warmer. In the meantime, there are a number of little issues that I can take care of while it's garaged, or getting modest use, over the winter.

Thanks everyone!

--Chris
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Old 09-14-2004, 04:28 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by 320icab91@Sep 14 2004, 12:42 PM
Thats a fine car in exelent condition ! i would buy it if I where you !

I just imported a 1991 320i convertible from germany to denmark and i love this car

But be really happy that you are living in US, here in demark i gave 19200$ all inclusive !!! the danish goverment loves taxes and so on n
omfg thats so much money!!! is it plated with gold?!@$@^#$?*$&)5076830756 sfd@$^$#&$%(^

ok wow.
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