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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 09-24-2005, 06:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Newbie needing help

hi all! i am a newbie to the bmw world. I am looking at either like a 96 328 or 5 series. I read the buyers guide on here, but i have some questions still. Now if the car was mainted well, What parts are going out at certain milage? Such as when is the norm to have the tranny replaced? And would a 3 or 5 series be a better buy? thanks!
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Old 09-24-2005, 07:07 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I got a weird take on that question but I think it nails it......it depends how big your are. I know, I know, there are some of you guys out there that are 6 something loving their 3 and there are shorter guys out there tearin' it up in a 5. My thought is 5'11 taller go for the 5, shorter guys go for the 3. It will just feel right, kinda like a good suit, course some of you may not know what that feels like..........
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Old 09-25-2005, 12:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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thanks, that helps..but i was wondering which of the two was a better deal if they were both the same price? And when major componets start to wear out? thanks
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Old 09-25-2005, 01:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Well, as far as which is a better deal, that depends on a lot. If the 3 series is a really nice 328ic with low miles, and you like convertibles, and the 5 series is a decent 525 with average miles, it's a pretty easy decision. Basically, if you like a larger sport sedan that can seat 4 comfortably, and 5 with a slight sacrifice of comfort for the rear passengers, go with the 5 series. If you want a smaller sport sedan that is usually a little bit cheaper, but will only really fit two people comfortably (Rear leg space), but is also lighter, and has more aftermarket support available, go with the 3 series. Now that being said, if you could find a pair of Bimmers for let's say $10,000 (No comments on my dream world now), and the choice was between a 1998 328is with 50,000 miles, a nice set of wheels, some coilovers, a few doodads under the hood to spice things up, and nice air freshener, and a 1998 540i with 75,000 miles, a really nice interior, some cool wheels, a few more doodads under the hood, a set of upgraded shocks and springs, and the exterior looked mint, I would go with the 540i. Nice 4 liter V8 power in a very comfortable sedan that would be good for a young family if the need should arise. The value would be better on the 5 series, but the 3 series is a slightly sportier car, and the amount of aftermarket support for the 3 seires is almost unbelievable. But this is just my opinion. What exactly are you looking for in your BMW purchase?
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Old 09-25-2005, 05:12 PM   #5 (permalink)
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thanks BMWjesterfan, thats pretty much what i was looking for. I am starting a new career in real estate, and so i am looking for a classy dependable car. I have found many 540's and many 328's in my price range and i could not decide which one would be best.
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Old 09-26-2005, 11:48 AM   #6 (permalink)
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If there is a good chance you may be carting folks around looking at houses, go with the 5 series. More room, more refined and more luxourious. I would choose a larger engine than the 2.8 in a 5 series, but thats just me!
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Old 09-26-2005, 12:27 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Oh yeah, you carting people around to look at houses you need at least a 5, rear seat room in a 3 is a joke especially if you're sitting back some.
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Old 09-27-2005, 11:05 PM   #8 (permalink)
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thanks for the good advise guys
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