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E34 (1989 - 1995)

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  #1  
Old 07-04-2016, 09:45 PM
Mohammed nawar Mohammed nawar is offline
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New iraqi e34 enthusiast

Hello mates am happy to be in your forum specially given the fact that its global and includes such a large number of people, that being said i am from iraq and in here we have lots of e34s mostly the 1993 and as it happens i am considring buying one now i am not actually a tech expert but i do love how the e34 drives and looks and feels but the problem is i need some general info about wheather this car with milage above 150.000km can still be road worthy with reasonable maintance i am willing to give time labour and money(reasonably of course!) to enjoy driving it also in here the weather is very hot in summer(40-50c) so is that will be a problem? And does a price from 6.500$-75.000$ is reasonable?

P.S sorry for my bad english.
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  #2  
Old 07-05-2016, 03:16 AM
kingpin025 kingpin025 is offline
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Mein Auto: 1993 & 2001 M5
I have over 241,000 miles/387850 KM on my 93 M5 and it runs like a champion. So yes they will run and be reliable with proper maintenance. You must remember that because we are talking about a 23+ year old car it will take some work to get most of them back to that reliability level. There is a ton of expertise on this forum and Bimmerforums to draw from so you're in the right place. As far as the initial price, for about $3000 US you can find a e34 525i in decent shape. Maybe less if you look around. The more powerful models would be a bit more expensive in kind. I'm not sure how those prices would translate to you though. Good luck on your search.
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  #3  
Old 07-05-2016, 09:51 AM
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thumper600 thumper600 is online now
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all about parts availability. If a new to you car is 20+ years old you can be assured there will be problems. Are you mechanically inclined? You need not be a tech expert in that these cars are really straight forward. But the old adage is true for this as it is for anything else, once you know how to do something it's easy. So check into parts availability and talk to some one who owns one and who has no vested interest in making anything sound better then it is about the ownership. If you decide to get one, happy motoring.
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  #4  
Old 07-05-2016, 11:49 AM
Mohammed nawar Mohammed nawar is offline
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Actually thats reassuring to know specially from you guys given that you do own and run cars with over 300.000km!! I am really amazed. The parts are available and even if i needed am sure i will find it on ebay wouldent i? And yes i am mecahnically inclined but i am a bit worried about somethings like the VANOS system and how to check the integrity of its electrical system
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  #5  
Old 07-05-2016, 01:46 PM
Mohammed nawar Mohammed nawar is offline
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Actually i am both impressed and reassured that you still drive it like a champion. Currently i have a chinease car its called lifan 320 which is basically a copy of the british mini cooper it have a 1.3cc engine with 16valves and 5 gear manual trans after only 8.000km now i am hearing strange sounds when it is at 1st and 2nd gear and thats the reason i am going for a used e34 mainly as i am afraid that this car will basically fall apart after few years and lose alot of its original value which was 7500$ my
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  #6  
Old 07-05-2016, 02:36 PM
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thumper600 thumper600 is online now
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On the early models I believe you will not find any VANOS components. (Haven't found anything similar to it in 12 years of ownership). And for the electrical system either it works or it doesn't. Again, the e34 is really quite straight forward. Perhaps you should invest in the Bentley Publishing e34 repair guide.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Bentley-...JXaOu7&vxp=mtr

The information is great
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  #7  
Old 07-05-2016, 07:51 PM
Mohammed nawar Mohammed nawar is offline
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Many thanks mate i will try to get one and learn more about it.
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  #8  
Old 07-07-2016, 07:54 AM
hans747 hans747 is offline
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Hi Mohammed,

1993 was a cutoff year for the vanos/nonvanos engines. Mine was built in late 1992 but does not have Vanos.

Here's how you can tell the difference. Vanos engines have a round bump at the front of the engine. Non vanos engines do not have the bump.


But even a faulty vanos will not be the death of the car. It will just make it run poorly. And it is a relatively easy fix for any mechanic who knows BMW engines.

In my e34, I have found that the suspension parts are pretty badly worn. So that is a place to look before you buy.

And please don't apologize for your ability to speak english. You are doing very very well!
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  #9  
Old 07-07-2016, 09:06 AM
Mohammed nawar Mohammed nawar is offline
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thanks a lot hans i try my best not to commit spelling errors. and thanks for the kind words and explanation i did lots of research on what VANOS is and what it does and i came up with the understanding that its mainly giving the engine more torque at low speeds and more power at high speeds by changing the cam shaft angling and thus it somewhat more fuel efficient and can give some extra HP out of the same engine. i dont know if i am wrong though. in here the m50 engine is more popular and wanted than the m20 but like i said earlier it will help to know where to look for rust and worn out pieces. also i dont know why the prices are so high in here compared to europe and the US i did some searching online and i found out lots of e34s with m50 engine in a very good shape at 4.000 to 5.000$ in here the prices can go as high as 8.500$!!!! i would have come and buy one if i could but to add the transport and the border fees i think it will translate to the same price but i havent checked that to be sure actually. the other matter that i want to discuss with you guys is the overheating problem in here its like the Achilles heal for the e34s but do take in mind that in summer we face a 45-50C and also we use an air conditioner which i am sure it will overload the engine somewhat. so any of you in here have ever faced such problem in hot climates?and if so whats the solution?
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  #10  
Old 07-07-2016, 01:54 PM
paul1733 paul1733 is offline
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I wouldn't worry about the overheating, I get temperatures above 40C in Australia. As long as the viscous fan,auxiliary fan,water pump are in working order + you run a 50/50 mix coolant (I reccomend genuine BMW) you shouldn't have a problem, I don't. In regards to wiring, if you don't mess with it it will last, my E34 will be 28yrs old in september. What's the fuel price in Iraq $0.80 per litre? I would pay $1.27 per litre here but BMW prefer higher octane so it's around $1.37 per litre. I just thought fuel economy would be the last thing on your mind.
Welcome to the forum
Good luck with you purchase/choice
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  #11  
Old 07-07-2016, 04:20 PM
hans747 hans747 is offline
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There are two different versions of the M50 engine. The M50 and the M50TU. "TU" stands for technical update, which was the addition of Vanos. If you want to get really technical, the names usually have either a 20 or 25 to denote the 2.0 liter engine or the 2.5 liter engine. So if you are looking at a 1993 525i with vanos, the engine is called M5025TU.

Now I just made BMWs boring. Sorry!

Vanos helps with the torque a little bit. But if you find a good car, I would buy it regardless if the Vanos is in good shape or not. It's not a difficult repair.

As for the cooling, just make sure that you keep the cooling hoses, thermostat, and waterpump up to date. People get lazy on that maintenance, and that causes headgasket failure.

Good luck!
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  #12  
Old 07-07-2016, 04:30 PM
Mohammed nawar Mohammed nawar is offline
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thanks mate.well i dont own an e34 yet but i have drove it and some not all people who own it in here do complain from overheating problems and some of them had replaced the stock fan with an electrical one thats why i brought up the overheating issues. another thing in here there hasnt been any official BMW office or services until 6 years ago and even so they only serve newer models so we had to rely on our own trial and error concept in fixing them however now things are a bit better and there is lots of parts and expertise on them. as for the fuel its like 0.6$ but its a very bad poorly refined fuel so i am thinking of adding this high octane additives to enhance it but i have no information about its reliability/safety. am not concerned about fuel economy for the time being actually. it will be helpfull though as i said before to know where to look when to buy an old car what places should i check in the car body/systems etc.
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  #13  
Old 07-07-2016, 04:57 PM
Mohammed nawar Mohammed nawar is offline
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BMWs never git boring for me not yet anyway. thanks for the explanation but yea i am looking for 525i with an m50 regardless of whether it have VANOS or not as people in here are going crazy specially in prices when it comes to VANOS inclusion. as for the overheating i think its as you all said a matter of maintenance. my main concern now is how to make sure that the car is not rusted beyond repair i mean where to look for rust? and is there anything else i should know? it will help a lot actually.and can they hack it?like fooling me in its mileage or is that impossible?
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  #14  
Old 07-07-2016, 10:23 PM
hans747 hans747 is offline
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1. You have rust problems in Iraq?! I thought that was a problem for people who live in snowy/salty places. Ok, I will stop being amazed and answer your question. Some of the common rust areas include: bare metal components under the car like exhaust and suspension. Sometimes the door panels will rust if their drains get plugged up with dirt (causes the doors to hold water). Aside from that, look around the wheel arches and rocker panels.

2. Can they hack it?
A. The way someone would falsify the mileage is by replacing the odometer with one from a lower car. I am not sure how you could verify this.
B. When you put the key in the ignition and turn it foward (without starting it), you should see the engine light and the airbag light (if it has airbags) on the dashboard. The airbag light will turn off after a few seconds. The engine light will turn off once you start the car. If either of these light stay on, that means there is a problem in their respective systems. If either of the lights never come on, that means those systems (or their lights) have been disabled by someone. That's a sign that someone has been tampering with the car.

3. If anyone is charging a lot of extra money for Vanos, they are crazy. It makes a little bit of difference, but not a huge amount.

4. Can you take it to a mechanic for an inspection? It might cost you some money for them to take it for a test drive and look under the hood. But it could save you a lot of money if something wrong is hiding in the car.
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  #15  
Old 07-08-2016, 11:32 AM
Mohammed nawar Mohammed nawar is offline
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I can understand that actually but in here rust is caused by another more important factor even without snow/salt wich is simply (neglect/HUGE amount of off road driving ) when they first were introduced in iraq BMWs was basically owned by either high level officials(the ones am looking for as they are basically well maintained) and army officers and many of those had thier relatives in somewhat the countryside(mainly mud dirt and more mud) and these cars are the ones am trying to run from as they treated them basically as US jeeps. If it was up to me i like manual non VANOS m50 as i like realibilty more than anything but the manual is very hard to get and i am still looking.
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  #16  
Old 07-08-2016, 11:55 AM
hans747 hans747 is offline
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That sounds like a good combination. I have one with the automatic transmission, and it's not a very good transmission. It's rather slow and not as reliable as the manual transmission.
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  #17  
Old 07-08-2016, 01:15 PM
Mohammed nawar Mohammed nawar is offline
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Yea it sounds good but its a pain to find specially in good condition and by the way can i replace an automatic trans with a manual one?or is it a difficult procedure.
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  #18  
Old 07-08-2016, 01:20 PM
hans747 hans747 is offline
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It is possible. And commonly done.

See the links in this recent thread:
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=919585

It's best if you can find a complete e34 manual that can serve as a donor car. The transmission is the same as the e36, but a lot of the other parts are specific to e34.
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  #19  
Old 07-08-2016, 02:13 PM
Mohammed nawar Mohammed nawar is offline
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Thanks will try to find one for sure but it wont be easy
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  #20  
Old 07-13-2016, 01:01 AM
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thumper600 thumper600 is online now
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Mohammed, please don't belittle your English skills. They're great in that your points come across clear and concise. I know there are many languages spoken in Iraq but let's just pick one, Arabic. Just imagine us trying to communicate in Arabic. Me for one would have a really difficult time, even with the help of a translator because I'm unsure of the noun verb situation in sentences. Anyhow, I don't know when the VANOS introduction date is but my e34 540 doesn't have VANOS. My friends 98 e39 540 does not have it. My '99 e39 540 had the single VANOS and my '01 M5 has a double VANOS. Mine are all V8 models, so the difference may be in the six cylinder vs the eight. There are help articles by BEISAN who walk you through the VANOS rebuild so hopefully this presents no obstacle. I've also noticed some prices you've mentioned. They seem astronomical. I am clueless as to shipping but in Germany e34 and e39 BMW's are sold inexpensively. I am unsure if you have to change out the European norm ancillaries like bumpers, lights, different switches performing different functions like one sided park lights, rear fog lights. etc. to Iraqi specs but I'm sure you can get a decent example for not a lot of money. I'm also sure the math will work out in your favor but you're the one who has to sit down with the pencil and paper. And as for overheating, check the website for the manufacturer, (I think it's RK), that makes a four core completely metal radiator. Don't know how plastic holds up in Iraq but this metal and the four core seems to be the bullet proof way to go.

Last edited by thumper600; 07-13-2016 at 01:07 AM.
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