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View Full Version : considering a m5 '91, help


Steeltag
11-14-2009, 09:47 AM
Hi, I'm brand new here....I need some advice. I thought I wanted an e34 535i, found a nice condition m5 1991 model. I drove it, everything is great. Surprisingly, found two rust spots on identical sides of the rear corner panel close to the rear brake light. One on each side, isn't that odd or is this a normal problem with e34. This car dealer has owned it for 3 years, driven 3600 miles since he bought it with 6k miles on odometer.... ...but... ...he showed me the carfax report showed in '02 having 25k. What the heck happened? fraud? speed odmeter replacement, what?
So, would you buy it for $8,900 ( would offer less for the repair of the rust), is that overpriced? Also, after looking at photos of many m5's of that era, noticed that this one has a rear seat divider that is a storage/arm rest, but many others don't! Is that a factory/dealer option perhaps? The seats don't have 'M' emblems either like others I have seen. Thoughts?? Is it too fishy to purchase? Of course, I would have it checked out, but it rides/accelerates great! Everything works!

http://www.autotrad er.com/fyc/ vdp.jsp?ct= p&car_id= 270175000& dealer_id= 64724573& car_year= 1991&rdm= 1258158180464& lastStartYear= 1981&model= M5&num_records= 25&systime= &make2=&highligh tFirstMakeModel= &start_year= 1990&keywordsfyc =&keywordsrep= &engine=& certified= &body_code= 0&fuel=&awsp= false&search_ type=used& distance= 0&marketZipError =false&search_ lang=en&sownerid =56666255& showZipError= y&make=BMW& keywords_ display=& color=&page_ location= findacar% 3A%3Aispsearchfo rm&min_price= &drive=&default_ sort=priceDESC& seller_type= b&max_mileage= &style_flag= 1&sort_type= priceDESC& address=75067& advanced= &end_year= 1993&doors= &transmission= &max_price= &cardist= 8&standard= false&rdpage= thumb

CarDriver
11-14-2009, 05:46 PM
here is a link that works, it is the second one from the top.

http://autos.aol.com/used-list/year-1991/make1-BMW/model1-M5

Run your own carfax report on the car. VIN: WBSHD9314MBK05145 (it is worth the 30 bucks).

The miliage sounds sketchy at best????

Here is what NADA says the "Clean retail" value of the car is with up to 100,000 miles on it
http://www.nadaguides.com/usedcars.aspx?LI=1-21-1-5013-0-0-0&l=1&w=21&p=1&f=5014&m=1026&d=210&y=1991&c=16&vi=1874&da=-1&mi=100000

Ask him to deduct $1,000 for the rust. That is what it would cost to have a "real" bodyshop do the work correctly.

her is the NADA Definition of Clean Retail (this car falls shy of that due to the rust)
http://www.nadaguides.com/popup.aspx?LI=1-21-1-5014-0-0-0&l=1&w=21&p=1&f=5621&vi=1874#PriceID1

That is a Sweet Car. If it checks out and you can live with the price... Go For IT !!! :)

Tourburgring
11-14-2009, 10:33 PM
I would be very wary of this car. The pictures show what looks like rusting around the door hinges - you can see it on the driver seat interior shot and the one of the drivers door. The M5 badge on the trunk is mounted quite a bit further from the RH side than the other M5's shown for sale. Not sure if that means anything but it's different. Rusting on either side at the back could indicate a rear end shunt causing the rear fenders to crinkle. A bad repair would rust through quickly. $8900 is quite low for an M5, but I think this car has some hidden history. Rear Seat console was an option on the M5, in fact there is another white M5 with grey interior in the same listing that has that option.

gtopaul
11-15-2009, 07:03 AM
The car was built in Feb of 1990. Actually four cars behind mine. The rear center console came in the earlier model cars before 09/90 I believe. After that date they got the regular back seat. The cars been painted which accounts for the back emblem being misplaced and maybe accounts for the evidence of rust in the back. My sons M5 has a spot of rust in the same area though so it is a likely location if the car has spent time where the roads are salted. Also the bottom of the doors needs to be looked at carefully. The mileage, if not original, would indicate someone has replaced the instrument cluster or replaced the speedometer head. You can check the VIN number of the cluster by going through the self test routine. The front wheels are on backwards (they're directional) which indicates a lack of knowledgable or caring ownership. It would be interesting to see what a current Carfax would show.

Wolf-Strong
11-15-2009, 10:58 AM
This would be the perfect example of 'there is no such thing as a cheap e34 M5'. Sure, you can purchase the car for cheap, but just assume you are going to need to drop at least $5k into it in a years time to get it in proper condition.

Personally I would steer clear of this car just based on the odo fraud. It may of been something as simple as them replacing the cluster because the old one went bad, but it just goes to show the lack of concern they had not making it have the right mileage. Something as important as that, and they let it slide will obviously show the lack of concern for other things such as skipping out on valve adjustments, using gasket sealer to 'hide' leaks temporarily (someone did this on my brothers car), not putting the wheels on correctly, and who knows what else.

You can always have it inspected by a good tech to confirm all that is wrong, and try and pick it up for next to nothing if you wanted (couple thousand...?). Really push the odo fraud on this guy, because that brings in a whole legal issue, and if you ever wanted to sell the car, now you could be tied up in a REALLY big mess unless you re-replaced the odo with one with the correct mileage. I could be mistaken, but the mileage is probably recorded elsewhere on the car like in the ECU or something.

So, for a car like this, just wait for a better example and let the guy know about the legal issues he can face unless he reports it to the DMV of a non-functional cluster.

Steeltag
11-19-2009, 08:28 PM
thank you so much fellow's for the your thoughts and info. I thought I looked for the rust on the doors, didn't look bad....but. I will take it to a German autohaus that I trust if I were to make an offer on it to have it really checked out. I took it to a body shop for a quote on the rust spots in the rear quarters. they took off the inner trunk lining and didn't see any crash damage, perhaps a leaking taillight? ( it wasn't comprehensive eval though). Told me $500 to fix ( this is their low season, I've used them before too and have a professional relationship with since he sends me business, so perhaps he was giving me a deal.

Again, the mileage worries me....especially for my resale chances later down the road when I wanted to sell it. I would definitely offer him less due to the rust and mileage. But, it drove wonderfully...but I'd have the indy evaluators give me their opinion in case I was too 'stary eyed' to notice problems. ( thought I did have a friend with me who would catch more of the issues).

I would prefer one with a light grey interior over the black though.

Still, after reading a good bit on this site and the m5board, I'm a bit worried about the costs for repair. gulp...

Wolf-Strong
11-20-2009, 09:58 AM
Well have the thing inspected by someone who knows the S38 to do a leakdown, compression, and all that jazz. If it passes well, then I say go for it. If not, keep on looking.

Steeltag
11-23-2009, 11:52 PM
Would you think there was a compression issue if the car ran beautifully? I have asked two different shops if they do a compression check during a 'pre-purchase inspection', neither did and they are both BMW indy's.

Tourburgring
11-24-2009, 10:47 AM
Compression &n Leakdown tests are labour intensive so most people won't pay for that as part of a regular Pre-Purchase Inspection (PPI).

My suggestion would be to get the PPI and find out how good the car really is and whether it needs any major work. Then if you still want to go forward decide on the Compression & Leakdown test. It's definitely worth it if you intend to buy the car as it gives an accurate idea of the real condition of the engine and valvegear.

I would also get a Carfax to see if it verifies the mileage or not.

Steeltag
11-26-2009, 08:56 PM
He ordered the Carfax and showed it to me, gave me a copy actually. Remember my originally thread.....showed 25k miles in 2002 even though it now only shows 9000 miles or so. Speedometer cluster replacement? And if so, why would someone do that? It still shows km's as well as mph, so why would they change it out if it was only kilometers per hour? Perhaps b/c they moved from Vancouver, BC to the USA??

davidmeyer
11-27-2009, 11:33 AM
As a owner of a 1991 bmw e34 m5 i would strongly suggest you continue looking , the car you will want will be an original well cared for example. The engine in this car is truly the most important aspect also i would walk from any e34 with rust. Lastly become a scholar of this car it will beneficial when you make your purchase.