Question concerning Reliability - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
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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#1 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 12:23 AM
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Hey all, I am looking into buying a BMW 3 series, the years that i am looking at are 92-96.. I am TRYING to get a dependable one for under 6.5k. Basically, I dont care how many miles are on the car AS LONG AS it doesnt require TOO many repairs. My question is, how long (miles) can you expect one to last if it has been serviced regularly. Just to let everybody know, here is a link to a BMW i might have a look at. Give me any feedback on the pricing or mileage. Also, how much does say... a 94 BMW 318 IS go for with a manual and 110k miles on the average. Thanks for your replys, Dave

http://www.autotrader.com/fyc/vdp.jsp?car_...or=&cardist=129
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#2 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 01:02 AM
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Wow that is a great price ! throw some clear corners and tails and rims and that thing is frieking P.I.M.P..... mine has 170k and still running strong and i bought it for 5300 US at 155K miles so that one your getting is frieking awesome in my opinon

<span style='color:red'>- Conforti cold air intake
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#3 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 01:43 AM
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provided you get it checked out and there are no major problems ... that is a great car for money they're asking. My family used to be afraid of high milage, but when you buy cars made by good (foreign) companies you can easily run then past 200,000 miles. The M50 and M52 engines are very solid. They have their problems, but if cared for properly they will run into the high 2xx,xxx mark. There is a spec somewhere of how long BMW engineered the inline-6 to go ... its somewhere between 200 and 300k

That said ... there are some preventative maintenance items that do need to be taken care of ... plastic thermostat housing for one ... there is a list of common e36 problems on here ... you could do a search. Some basic stuff can go awry ... but then agin, you are dealing w/ a car w/ over 10 years of use ... so it may not be *perfect*

judge their reliability by how many are still on the roads, and still looking fine after 10+ years.

take volvos for example ... volvo's are known for having quirks, and for always having something wrong with them ... that said ... there are 20 year old 240's running around everywhere.

bottom line ... it will last if you let it last ...

hope that helps

alex

<span style='color:blue'>1992 325is
I think i'm in love ...
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#4 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 05:34 AM
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think about it like this:
if you buy a $5,000 bmw... to keep it in shape its going to cost you $5,000....

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#5 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 06:49 AM
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Thats not exactly a good way to think about it Skaw... to find a good deal... watch for good deals.. then investigate them... inspect the car.. and make sure everything looks good... or even take it to BMW and let them inspect it.... then if it is a cheap buy... buy the car.


1997 E36 M3 1990 E30 325i
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#6 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 08:01 AM
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thats a reasonable price for that car, but get it checked out by a pro


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#7 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 03:15 PM
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Thanks for the replys everybody, is what skaw said accurate though? If I buy BMW for 5,000 with about 150,000 miles on it, should i expect to put 5,000 into it? Assuming it has a clean carfax and passes inspection n all. Thanks
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#8 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 03:22 PM
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Best thing is to have it checked out like everyone else says. There's no telling what could be wrong or what could be right with the car. You need to drive it and have it inspected thoroughly by someone who knows their shit. That car can be a tank that can last longer than any Honda ever would if you really want it to. But as cars get older and put more miles on, they need the maintanence. Its like Grandpa...the older he gets, the more times he needs to see the doctor and the more medicine he needs (may be a bad comparison, but hell, enlightened my day).


My car I KNOW for a fact is in pristine condition...its a 318i with 83K on it, great records and maintanence history, and Blue Book only lists that I could get $7000 if I were to sell it...so with the miles on your car, it sounds like a reasonable price...DO YOUR HOMEWORK

1996 318i
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#9 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 03:24 PM
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bah i am doing my homework!
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#10 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 03:32 PM
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good, then ignore what I said

1996 318i
5 Speed Manual

Alpine CDA-7895 Head Unit
12&quot; Alpine Type-R, sealed box
Pioneer 400w amp for $20 at a yard sale (to replace my fried MRV-1507)
Infinity Kappa 4&quot; 2-way speakers(rear)
Infinity Kappa 5.25&quot; component speakers(front)
Debaffled airbox, K&amp;N filter
Tracked Mud on carpets
Shampooed and cleaned carpets
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#11 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 03:51 PM
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Anybody else though on what skaw said?
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#12 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 04:10 PM
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Skaw is partly correct. I bought mine with 160K on it for $10K. Its a little newer than this and its in roughly the same area of the country as me, but 10K is still a great price.

Now since I paid $10K for it, Here have been my expenses:

Brake Pads: 110 (Pagid, Bavauto)
Rotors: 225 (Brembo, Bavauto)
Pad Sensors: 25 (Bavauto)
Anti Squeak: 5 (Bavauto
Caliper Grease: 9 (Bavauto)
Fan Clutch: 65 (All OEM)
Thermostat: 25 (Stealer)
3 Gallons Coolant:54 (stealer) (Don't ask, jack ass forgot to tighten the cap ghead )
Air Filter:30 (stealer)
oil filters:25 (Ebay)
Oil: Too much (local store)
Trunk Tool Kit: 50 (ebay)
Cig lighter: 5 (ebay)
Flashlight: 10 (ebay)
Peak Reader: 150
Oh yeah, the peak reader told me I need new cats: 1500 (havent bought yet, just keep resetting the code)

Things I haven't bought yet:

Front struts:325
rear shocks:100
new suspension bushings:400

Luckilly it had some good Yokohama tires on it, so I haven't a need for them yet...

Its not quite $5K, but it'll nickle and dime you.

I think its a good deal, but then again I haven't seen it. Maybe its bombed out inside, or the paint isnt that good.

Take a look, let us know!

Need a new sig...

A BMW is for the soul, a Chevy is for groceries...

BAN KRAFTFAHRER!!!!
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#13 (permalink) Old 07-29-2004, 09:27 PM
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If you are looking for something inexpensive, why not go with a less expensive e36 like a 318. Last year, I got my 96 ti with 52,xxx miles for about $7,000.
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#14 (permalink) Old 07-31-2004, 06:57 PM
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yes... costs 2.5k more but you get 100,000 less miles, only thing though is i dont like the way the TI's look too much
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#15 (permalink) Old 07-31-2004, 08:03 PM
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make sure you check out the blue book price on it first. it seems to me like its its a pretty reasonable price... but call the owner and ask him for the VIN, ask someone to run a CARFAX report on it, and make sure its not a salvage title. If the Title isnt salvage, call the owner again and ask him/her when you can check out the car for yourself. Since it's a manual, you're probably gonna have to change the clutch pretty soon [considering the mileage is pretty high] the clutch kit costs about $200. Just check it out, and see for yourself.

.snice.
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