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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 10-03-2004, 05:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Hello forumers,
I recently had opportunity to buy my first car of my own choice, and decided instantly to go for a BMW since I wanted speed and quality. I decided on a 92-98 3 series because the newer ones were out of my price range and though I read on enthusiast sites that the E30 chassis handled quite nicely, truthfully I wanted all the modern conveniences and luxury of a newer model. Today a found and agreed to buy a car which is in good shape except for my worry about the mileage, and I lack the experience on BMWs to know if this is a bad deal. As follows,

1995 325is Coupe w/ Sports Package
176,000 Miles
Manual Transmission
Black/Black
$6,000

The car and driver give the impression that it was cared for, as it has an aftermarket exhaust system, a Stereo/Sound/Subwoofer system, as well as M3 floor mats.

The paint has somewhat noticeable chips and embedding of rocks along the leading inches of the hood, but is otherwise good. I noticed however some white on the bumper in a seam on the rear, but could not tell whether it was paint. As for the interior, the leather had no damage, but was noticeably worn and faded , which I intend to try and fix. The only thing I noticed was plastic molding missing from the passenger side door handle and two pieces of molding on the floor which had come loose. Most of the toolkit was missing as well.

It is below Bluebook and the seller says regular maintenance has been followed with a local mechanic. Ominously, the check engine light is lit, the seller claims this lit after he installed a non-BMW airfilter, and that it remained lit after he replaced the stock filter.
The car does seem to run quite well, with very nice acceleration though our test drive never left residential streets. It seems to be a good car, and I am only worried that the reason he is selling it is to shed it before it dies.

The seller has agreed to me having it inspected by the mechanic of my choice before I buy it, and I hope that any long term issues will be recognized by him. Please advise me if the car as a whole is probably a bad idea, or if with its advanced mileage if high speed driving would be advised against because of engine wear.
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Old 10-03-2004, 07:04 AM   #2 (permalink)
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The car has a very high mileage, I should look for a car with less miles on it for sure!
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Old 10-03-2004, 08:44 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Yeah that price is a little high for the milage. Unless the car is in exceptionally good condition. Sometimes people put in aftermarket stuff and call it "sport package". Dark window tints and chrome rims and aftermarket trunk speakers should not increase the value of a car! Even though alot of private sellers and dealers seem to think so.

"If there's rice dont buy"

This was my rule when I was shopping for my BMR. I realized there was alot of sellers who for some reason bought e36 sedans and spent thousands adding aftermarket junk to it in order to create sport packages or M3-like cars. Then for some reason they sell them and try to sell them at higher than average cost.

The signs are:
1) Unsually high milage (like in your case)
2) Cars advertised w/ having some sort of nondescript "Sports Package" (like in your case)
3) Cars sold above average value with not much mention of interior condition/ engine condtion, and the other important stuff (like in your case)

I could be wrong! but DO NOT buy the first car you see. Even if you think its a good deal. A year ago I almost paid $8900 for a 1993 boston green (yucky ) BMW 318i with more than average cosmetic flaws (missing hubcaps, old ass tires, BMW logos chipped off, no radio, broken glove box, dirty carpeting) with 130,000 miles on it. The only thing that stopped me was I needed about $1000 more to get it and my Mom did not want to give me the dough and the dealer did not want to go lower. Anyway last june I got a 1995 calypso red (sweet ) 318i in mint condition (just needed new tires, armrest, basic BMW servicing, and fuel/air sensor) for a little over $5000 and the milage was 130,000.


Check Ebay or Autorader for good examples of what people are selling e36s and you'll get and idea of what you'll be paying for something decent.
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Old 10-03-2004, 09:45 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I bought my 1997-328i -at the auction for roughly US$15 000...It's is worth it??
-Milage- 5600miles(the day i bought it).
- New interiors....
-No chips at all.,no stratches.like new paint
-In the garage since 1997 never moved since then..
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Old 10-03-2004, 09:55 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by zeaq@Oct 3 2004, 08:45 AM
I bought my 1997-328i -at the auction for roughly US$15 000...It's is worth it??
-Milage- 5600miles(the day i bought it).
- New interiors....
-No chips at all.,no stratches.like new paint
-In the garage since 1997 never moved since then..


more pic here..

http://www.bmw-forums.com/forum/inde...howtopic=22413
[snapback]203876[/snapback]
Dude You have a awesome car!!! But BMWs aren't made to sit in garage. The real worth and beauty of these cars come out when you drive them. $500,000 Ferraris and Maybachs can sit in a garage for 7 years and be worth it not BMWs!

So my answer is. I don't think it's worth $15,000 to have your 328i sitting cold and undriven in a garage grave for the rest of it's life.

Ride that thing man!!!
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Old 10-03-2004, 10:01 AM   #6 (permalink)
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i feel a song coming on,

come on ride that thing, and ride it, woop woop.........
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Old 10-03-2004, 10:24 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Delmarco,

Yeah i do agree cars sitting in the garage for a long time is not good.$15k is high for a 328i i think ,there are many cheaper E36 at the used car shop i don't really impress with their condition until i see this car at the auction and i straight away felt in love with that car...so clean ..so new...and all i have is too change the battery and new tyres....
i will keep my 328i forever and never in my life to sell it...

Here the place of auction where i bought my BMW 328i...too bad i can't take my 328i at that time of auction where's there is too many security..since no photo taken is allowed..
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Old 10-03-2004, 10:41 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I'm going to get the car inspected, which I hope should dispell any worries. Is Inspection I enough to identify any problems? About the sports package, I think it's legitimate as it has the wider wheels and power passenger seats, both of which I would think would be harder to do than lowering the suspension. In any case, the dealer inspection will be able to tell I assume.

Better to take it to a dealer for inspection or to an import shop?
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Old 10-04-2004, 12:35 AM   #9 (permalink)
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the mileage to price is alittle off for my tastes but if it is in really good condition and drives great buyt it up!

David
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Old 10-04-2004, 11:00 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Shak@Oct 3 2004, 09:41 PM
I'm going to get the car inspected, which I hope should dispell any worries. Is Inspection I enough to identify any problems? About the sports package, I think it's legitimate as it has the wider wheels and power passenger seats, both of which I would think would be harder to do than lowering the suspension. In any case, the dealer inspection will be able to tell I assume.

Better to take it to a dealer for inspection or to an import shop?
[snapback]204313[/snapback]

I would take it to a BMW dealer. Because BMW dealer are very meticulous and usually exaggerate evrey little thing they find wrong. Plus they may have a better idea of what would possibly be wrong with a car of that age and if they were any recalls or consistent problems with that model.

My impression of import shops if that they do too many other cars at once like the way a Vetenarian deals with lizards, monkeys, and dogs all in one day) and may not know that much about a particular BMW model's history.

One Last thing, If the car feels right to you then get it . But DUDE try your hardest to deal him down at least $1000 . That price is still too high for that year. Plus you'll have other costs ahead of you for regular monthly maintanence for a car that age. And I'm sure you could spend the extra money fixing or modding the car to your liking.
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Old 10-05-2004, 10:00 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Delmarco@Oct 3 2004, 09:44 AM
Yeah that price is a little high for the milage. Unless the car is in exceptionally good condition. Sometimes people put in aftermarket stuff and call it "sport package". Dark window tints and chrome rims and aftermarket trunk speakers should not increase the value of a car! Even though alot of private sellers and dealers seem to think so.

"If there's rice dont buy"

This was my rule when I was shopping for my BMR. I realized there was alot of sellers who for some reason bought e36 sedans and spent thousands adding aftermarket junk to it in order to create sport packages or M3-like cars. Then for some reason they sell them and try to sell them at higher than average cost.

The signs are:
1) Unsually high milage (like in your case)
2) Cars advertised w/ having some sort of nondescript "Sports Package" (like in your case)
3) Cars sold above average value with not much mention of interior condition/ engine condtion, and the other important stuff (like in your case)

I could be wrong! but DO NOT buy the first car you see. Even if you think its a good deal. A year ago I almost paid $8900 for a 1993 boston green (yucky ) BMW 318i with more than average cosmetic flaws (missing hubcaps, old ass tires, BMW logos chipped off, no radio, broken glove box, dirty carpeting) with 130,000 miles on it. The only thing that stopped me was I needed about $1000 more to get it and my Mom did not want to give me the dough and the dealer did not want to go lower. Anyway last june I got a 1995 calypso red (sweet ) 318i in mint condition (just needed new tires, armrest, basic BMW servicing, and fuel/air sensor) for a little over $5000 and the milage was 130,000.


Check Ebay or Autorader for good examples of what people are selling e36s and you'll get and idea of what you'll be paying for something decent.
[snapback]203856[/snapback]
Are you saying that Boston Green is "yucky"? I'll take my 94 325is boston green w/ 92,000 miles I bought for 6500 over your calypso "ticket me" red 1995 318i w/ 130,000 for 5000 anyday. How much did you spend fixing all that shit up?
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Old 10-05-2004, 02:00 PM   #12 (permalink)
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There is a e36 with 156000 for 3000 grand down the street from me. Runs good but would need some work. Leather is still good.

In other words that is way to much for the car your looking at. Get on autotrader and you will find a bunch to compair and get a better price.

Bimmersrus.com out of saint louis always has good deals on cars. Most have been maintained at the shop. Most of the car go for left hand book (whole sell).
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