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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 10-14-2008, 08:54 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Should I Buy This E30?

I just got back from the test drive and realized I know very little about BMWs. Sorry, I forgot to take a picture, but here's what it is:

1984 325e, AT
98xxx Miles
(She got it from her Grandma)
Beige Paint w/Bro. Leather
$550 obo (I could get her to $400 easy, but read on...)

What's wrong:
-I wish it had a 5-speed.
-Rough idle when not moving. (Park/Drive/Neutral)
-Lots of oil smoke from tailpipe at startup when cold.
-Smokes a little at tailpipe when driving/idling.
-She says it has a vacuum leak...but who knows.
-There's a hose w/bolt shoved in it above the intake manifold?
-Strange "clank" from rear pass. side suspension over pot-holes.
-Broken left corner/tail-light
-Turn signals don't blink, stay solid, maybe from the tail-light.
-Small dent/scrape rear left quarter panel and another on corner of roof.
-Random int. parts missing/broken like the E-Brake button, pass. door handle, roof courtesy light...
-Hippie flower drawing all over the center console.

What I like:
-Original wheels with newer rubber.
-Unmodified, grandma owned.
-AC works.
-I saw a new fan, new air filter and she says new spark plugs and regular maint.
-Sunroof works, power windows and mirrors work.
-CD player (I don't have to install one)
-Front fog lights
-Good paint
-Interior leather looks like new from what I could see.
-She says it gets 30mpg hwy, smogged last year (before the smoke), and she has the pink slip.

I'm taking it to the local auto shop tomorrow for a compression test and complete check-through. In the meantime, what do you think?
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Old 10-14-2008, 11:15 PM   #2 (permalink)
OMFG another one!?
 
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You gotta find out about that smoke and the mystery bolt and hose deal (might be contributing to the exhaust issue). But at the lowest $$ it may be a good fixer with those miles. But only after that rear clank noise and any suspension issues are made clear. Good luck!
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Old 10-15-2008, 10:13 AM   #3 (permalink)
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good luck with the car, sounds like a nice little challenge
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Old 10-15-2008, 11:21 PM   #4 (permalink)
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If you want a car to drive around you should get it. If you want a car to play with, you're looking at the wrong car. Even if the cars isn't modified, and you decide to modify it, it will be a waste. Automatics are trash compared to manual transmission vehicles when it comes to playing around. Just my opinion, but I think you can find another one. Just look around. By the way, that car doesn't get anywhere near 30 mpg. You'd be lucky to get 25!

Last edited by snagiloohklat; 10-15-2008 at 11:26 PM.
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Old 10-16-2008, 09:34 AM   #5 (permalink)
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$400? this thing is either a massive steal or ABSOLUTE beater....dig deeper...from reading it again, run....find something for $3k that runs perfect...cause you will easily put $2k into that thing
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Old 10-16-2008, 10:43 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Well, I bought it!

Update:

I took it to my local shop for a check-through, they said it may have trouble passing smog (high HC and OC), but with some TLC and a hot cat. it could pass. Besides that they said the car is mechanically perfect.

I gave her $400 and now the fun begins. I'm thinking about starting by changing to a little heavier oil and really running the crap out of it. The mystery hose ended up being a plug in the EVAP line, so reconecting that may help. Here's what she looks like:

DB front bumper and mis-matched fog lights:


I already changed the relay for the blinkers, nice to have those back!
Now I've got to figure out why only one wiper blade moves...?


M20 ETA runs like new (when warmed up), notice the mystery bolt:
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Old 10-16-2008, 10:44 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Congrats, hope it works out well for ya'!
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Old 10-16-2008, 10:46 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Oh, and the mystery "clank" was just a loose lower shock mount...easy fix.
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Old 10-16-2008, 11:15 AM   #9 (permalink)
OMFG another one!?
 
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