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3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

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Old 07-31-2004, 03:28 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Hi everyone,
Pardon my ignorance here, but I value your opinions as you actually own BMW's rather than trying to sell me one.

I am in the process of buying a BMW e36 Series. I have been looking at the 318i, 318is, and 320i. Is there much diffence in torque between all 3 models? I've test driven a few 318is manuals, and feel they are a beautiful car to drive. I am very curious to know if there is much difference in torque between the 318i and the 318is, and also, beteen the 318is and the 320i...? I have read the engine specifications.

Any help would be welcomed.
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Old 07-31-2004, 03:59 AM   #2 (permalink)
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i have heard that the 320 is slower than the 318, but i am not sure. the 320 is a 6 cylinder, which makes it heavier, and doesnt have much more power than the 318.

the 318i is a 4 door, while the 318is is a 2 door. besides that, i dont know. possibly "sportier" wheels or something.
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Old 07-31-2004, 05:36 AM   #3 (permalink)
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What kind of things should I be looking for problematic wise with the e36's? Are there any known problems with these cars?
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Old 07-31-2004, 05:49 AM   #4 (permalink)
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like any older car, check as much as you can.

i just had to replace 2 rotors, 60 bucks each, not too much of a biggy.

listen to the exhaust sound when accelerating. this is the 2nd time i have had to have my exhaust welded. i am not sure if it just because i am unlucky or whatever. getting it welded will set you back 80 bucks or so. if you leave it as it is, unwelded, it will lose a lot of power. trust me... make sure taht all windows are working. i think that sometimes the window regulators will go out, and it isnt cheap to fix.

i am not sure what the main common problems are, but those have been some of mine.
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Old 07-31-2004, 11:11 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Ok lets start 318i very sluggish and get m43 not m40 with cambelt. 318is best to get m44 engine not m42 ones 1800cc and other 1900cc. If 320i make sure its vanos model. 320i is best as you cant beat bmw 6cyl engines bullet proof. 318is m42/44 as fast as 320i but drink petrol. All depends what year your looking at as 320i is m50/m52/m52tu/m54 all different 2000cc engines.
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Old 07-31-2004, 11:21 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Yes, take the 320!
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Old 07-31-2004, 02:02 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I would say get the 318is for the stock LSD, however, they kinda went cheap on a few of the trim pieces in the s drs that I have seen. Such as on the steering wheel some of them just have the roundle embossed in the steering wheel, where as the 4drs have the roundel placed in the steering wheel. They are all 3 good cars, I would say stick to the 318's I've heard mixed things about the 320i. But since I am in the US I've never seen or experianced a 320i with my own eyes.
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Old 07-31-2004, 03:09 PM   #8 (permalink)
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HI guys Ali-bumble here.
Right lets start at the beginnig The 318i has 115 bhp and comes as four door saloon. It uses a 4 cylinder 2 valve per cylinder giving 8 valves and not much guts 0 - 62 mph in 12.9 sec. The 318is comes as a 2dr coupe up to 1997 and then a limited run of 4 door is saloons were launched with the whole mtech pack side skirts recaros etc. this model uses a twin cam unit giving 4 valves per cyclinder developing 140 bhp but torque is still lacking. You need to drive it hard between 4500 and 6800 rpm to get the best out of the engine. A full service history is a must as a neglected engine will cost you. Use a high grade fully synthetic oil. Still only a 4 pot engine tho. 0 - 62 mph in 9.9 sec. Sweetest of them all is the 320 2 litre 6 pot engine. Get a model built after september 1993 which has the vanos unit. without getting too technical it means variable valve timing which in the real world gives greater torque lower down in the rev range. The 6 cylinder engine has won numerous engineering awards and the exhaust note from the 6 pots is just fantastic. It has 150 bhp but does not need to be driven like a hooligan to get the best performance out of it. 0 - 62mph in 8.2 sec. It certainly is the pick of the bunch having owned 19 differente36's trust me it is a superior machine in all respects.
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Old 07-31-2004, 11:15 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Thanks guys, that is really helpful
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Old 08-05-2004, 02:38 AM   #10 (permalink)
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The 318is has a 1.9L engine (later ones) is lighter than a 320i. I may be a bit late to be of help. But I've driven all 3 and I own a 318is. Needless to say I like the is more.
But in Australia, the 318is is about the same price as the 325i....
Now I would get the 325 for speed, but hey, I wanted something to look like a M3... so.....
(I know you can get a E36 M3 in HK for dirt cheap!)
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Old 08-05-2004, 09:35 AM   #11 (permalink)
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318is coupe 16v DOHC generates nearly the same bhp as the 320 - add a OBDI chip and broom broom...quicker, torquier, sexier than the 320

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Old 08-05-2004, 10:23 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Wrong, the 318is has 140bhp and the 320i has 150bhp and alot more of torque.

A 318is can never keep up with the 320i
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Old 08-05-2004, 03:25 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Old 08-05-2004, 03:59 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I think we're mixing UKers with North American models here.

We don't have M40 or M43 here in NA. We have the M42/M44, both produce the same power. M42 and M44 is 138HP and 129lbs*ft of torque.

Secondly, 320 is NOT faster, it's actually slower than the 318, both 1/4 mile and 0-60

318 0-60 - 9.9 seconds
320 0-60 - 10.1 seconds

318 1/4 mile - 16.6 seconds
320 1/4 mile - 17.0 seconds

You guys are obsessed with bigger engines, you should be looking at the intelligent question of power to weight ratios. A 320 is much heavier and produces only slightly more power. Makes you wonder why there are no mods for the 320. It was only sold here in Canada for 1 year, which tells you a lot about how poorly it sold as well.

318 is a 16V (4 valves per cyl) DOHC 1.8L 4 cyl. The 320 isn't a good engine, if you want a 6 cyl, get the 325. 320 is far from bullet proof, it isn't even the same block as the M50, it has a much smaller block which is why the motor is often refered to as the "baby six". The only reason I'd trade up my 318 for the 320 would be that nice smooth sounding straight 6 engine, the 4 cyl sounds like a wheezing donkey. That said, I'd still take the 318, it's faster, lighter, handles better, there are more mods for it, and it's more fuel efficient. Get a 325!

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Old 08-05-2004, 04:41 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by frank de jonge@Aug 5 2004, 11:03 AM
Wrong, the 318is has 140bhp and the 320i has 150bhp and alot more of torque.

A 318is can never keep up with the 320i
If the increase is 10hp, from the 318, how can the 320 have a lot more torque?
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