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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 05-19-2004, 12:01 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Ok, I have had several cars. I am getting rid of one. It was a civic hatch hybrid with engine swap and street race ready if u know what i mean. My question is. I am looking at a 93 318is with 190,000 miles on it. It has a custom paint job done and M3 body kit. He is aking 4000. I talked with BMW in Odessa Texas and they said as long as it has had its normal service done then it should be fine. What is all of your opinions. I love the way the car looks, handles. It is sharp. I am 16 and do not want to spend 5000 dollars a year on servicing it. Do you think it will be a reliable car? What should I look for when i test drive it again? I think i can get him down to 3500. What is your opinion? Thanks for helping me!
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Old 05-19-2004, 12:09 PM   #2 (permalink)
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BMW's are the greatest in the world...and if you're gonna get a car with that kind of mileage, it would have to be a bimmer (although maybe by default, I don't know what other cars run that long). Although, I think you may be able to do better regarding the mileage for the money. I could be wrong. Just my 2 cents.
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Old 05-19-2004, 12:16 PM   #3 (permalink)
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As far as price...go to www.edmunds.com and plug in all the details for used car appraiser. I plugged in everything and loaded it up...in my part of the country its worth low 3's...but you should check it out.
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Old 05-19-2004, 01:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Assuming it is in excellent condition, I mean EXCELLENT, that car is worth around 3,500. I can see 4000 as a price, but only because of the mods. DOes it have custom wheels as well? If it's in good condition, it's worth 3,100 and I would offer 3500 and stay firm. Your choice, also, get some pics so we can judge better. If you can.
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Old 05-19-2004, 01:35 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I am going to advise you not to get the car. Given your apparent taste in cars and what you ask of them (4cyl base as racers), the 318is will not satisfy and at 190k will not hold up to much heavy modding, unless the owner has modded the engine already. If you don't plan on racing though, its a great car then.

There will be some preliminary work you will want to do to make sure the car is running well. The easiest thing to do is to perform an Inspection II service to make sure everything is replaced. I would also check the suspension bushings, as at that mileage they may be getting worn out.
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Old 05-19-2004, 02:53 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I am not into racing anynmore. It is too dangerous and i also have a bad back. So getting in and out of a honda that is slammed and that rides like a go cart is BAD for my back. I have slipped disk in my back. My taste in cars has always been a BMW or mercedes. My mother has owned merceds for her whole life. Im just wondering if im gonna get screwed each year for maintenence. I can get the car for 3500. It has a NEW custom paint job and has a m3 body kit. U think i should get it?
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Old 05-19-2004, 03:03 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'm almost in the situation you are. There was a 1990 525i in PERFECT MINT condition. The car was pampered its whole life. The catch: 220,000 miles. I said no right then and there, and chose a 1991 325ix for the same price with only 104,000 miles. If the car's been taken car of, there shouldn't be a problem. Think of the mileage though. Some BMW's can get to 300,000 miles, some only 250,000. If the engine and tranny are original, you don't know when they're going to give out. You won't want to get your new Bimmer home and reach 200,000 only to throw a rod or something. Think of the mileage and driveline condition. My standard for everything is 150,000. Anymore than that and I walk away.
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Old 05-19-2004, 05:17 PM   #8 (permalink)
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High Mileage is not as bad as you would think as long as the car has been maintained, also since gas has gone through the roof the 318 may be a smart choice, if you're not racing. Gas is probably cheapest down here in Tx, but its still more now than it was before.
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Old 05-19-2004, 06:22 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I would agree, but keep in mind a car with that many miles is not running at it's original efficiency. The gas mileage could be quite a bit lower than the original manufacture data.
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Old 05-19-2004, 09:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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dont get that car unless the engine is going to rebuilt...
you got:
a/c
tranny
engine mounts
engine
engine components (LOTS)
wheels
etc etc

to worry about.... all that crap could cost you THOU$AND$
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Old 05-19-2004, 09:20 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I think it's safe to say, no matter how cool it might look, it will only look so cool when it's sitting in a mechanic's garage, burning your hard earned money. Don't get it.
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Old 05-20-2004, 01:17 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Ok, well let me ask u one more question because im telling u its a SWEET car. I want to swap a M3 motor into it. Unless it cheaper to rebuild with new cams and pistons, but u think it would last until i saved up for an m3 swap? Im not going to rag on it. Im a change everything possible when or if i get it (oil, tranny fluid, EVERYTHING). I mean its worth 7 grand to this one guy. So i guess i could always buy it for 3600 and sell it to him. But what u think about swapping the motor or doing a rebuild whicever would be cheaper. I do want to do that tho.
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Old 05-20-2004, 01:27 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Something like that would work out. The car would definately last that long at least. But you also have to consider the tranny. How much longer is that going to last? You may want to consider a rebuild on that, too.
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Old 05-20-2004, 01:39 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Here's a link to a 1995 318is w/ 109k miles for 5.5k.

Also, it's easy enough to get a compression check of all the pistons and compare the numbers to a new one. That usually tells you what the condition of the motor is.

Maybe you should save a bit more $$ and buy one with less mileage.

Good luck.

btw, if you don't want to spend a lot of money on maint./repairs, then buy a car with lower mileage.
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Old 05-20-2004, 10:54 AM   #15 (permalink)
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OK, thanks very much. I appreciate the help. If i get that one which is a possibility cuz my father is going to pitch in for the new motor and tranny swap. I might even ge that 95 but thanks for the help. If i do get one ill post pics.
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