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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 3 Series / 4 Series > E36 (1991 - 1999)

E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 10-22-2012, 12:52 PM
Nackem Nackem is offline
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Looking to purchase first M3 - Worth it?

Hey guys,

New here but not necessarily to BMW's or the M3 in general but new to the E36 M3 specifically. I have been looking to upgrade my "track" car since I am currently running my 95 Integra GSR DD pretty hard with 200k+ miles and have been interested in getting into an E36 M3 with the intent of it becoming a track only car eventually. I see them a ton at the tracks and they look great and know that they have a very desirable chassis in terms of dynamics. I have found one pretty close to me and it looks to be a really good deal but wanted to get some thoughts/opinions from you all if anyone is up for giving me a little advice. I know about the cooling issues and bushings and such so I'm already prepared to invest a little money but just wanting to see how you all find this "deal" which I think I can get him to $8500-9k. Thanks in advance!

http://roanoke.craigslist.org/cto/3309979240.html
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  #2  
Old 10-22-2012, 01:44 PM
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jonesin jonesin is online now
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It is right at the point where it is needing or about to need a ton of work. Look at the stickies, specifically "Buying an E36?" for what all to look for. And what receipts to ask for.
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  #3  
Old 10-22-2012, 01:50 PM
granlund granlund is offline
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If you are turning it into a track car and putting it on a diet, you can make money selling off the apparently very good interior.

It doesn't matter if the car has the original cooling system and suspension bushings since you would want to upgrade that anyway for track use. Is the "ground control" suspension something you could use when first starting to track the car?
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  #4  
Old 10-22-2012, 02:04 PM
Nackem Nackem is offline
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Jonesin your post kinda scares me a bit, I will definitely take a look at that sticky. I had already put in my head that the cooling system and bushings would be a must to upgrade so that was definitely in the plan. As for the suspension I believe it is the full kit that includes the camber plates and ride height adjustments so I would say that it would be a viable suspension for the track, at least for now.
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  #5  
Old 10-22-2012, 02:25 PM
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ZeGerman ZeGerman is online now
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In general terms, the E36 M3 is a pretty bulletproof car. You need to replace the cooling system, bushings, suspension, and a few other odds & ends every 75-100k miles, but it's all fairly inexpensive and easy to replace yourself. If this car has had the suspension replaced recently, and you already plan to replace the cooling system (smart move), you will have taken care of the bigger maintenance items. If the owner didn't replace the control arms and/or bushings along with the rest of the suspension, those items are likely at the end of their useful life. I'd also recommend changing the spark plugs, drive belts, fuel filter, trans fluid, diff fluid, power steering fluid, and of course make sure the brakes are good. At this age, it probably has a dried up valve cover gasket, so that may need to be replaced as well. It's a $40 part and is easy to replace yourself.
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Last edited by ZeGerman; 10-22-2012 at 02:28 PM.
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  #6  
Old 10-22-2012, 02:57 PM
GroupBquattro GroupBquattro is offline
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Or you can start looking for track cars for sale. Much cheaper than doing it yourself. I built a rally car myself, and after all was said and done, after all the headaches, I put way more into it than I would've if I got an already prepped car. Of course once it's a track car, you will never sell it for anything close to what you put into it.
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  #7  
Old 10-22-2012, 03:50 PM
Nackem Nackem is offline
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Does $8.5-9k sound like a good deal even with the little bit of preventative maintenance type stuff? All "car value" calculators say something different but kbb has it at over $11k with the current condition of "fair"
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  #8  
Old 10-22-2012, 04:37 PM
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I think $8.5-9k is a fair deal for an OBD2 M3 with 86k miles on it, provided it does not have any rust or other damage.
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  #9  
Old 10-22-2012, 04:55 PM
Nackem Nackem is offline
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Do you feel that is a little on the high side or maybe low side? Emphasis on the OBD2 I take it wasn't on accident lol, care to elaborate? Not sure if you mean it to have a positive or negative connotation or maybe neither.
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  #10  
Old 10-22-2012, 06:37 PM
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OBD2 just means model year 1996-1999. I prefer the S52 powered OBD2 M3s built between '96-99 because they have more torque than the S50 powered OBD1 '95 M3s. Many people prefer cars managed by OBD1 software due to being easier to tune, but realistically, you can still tune an OBD2 car pretty easily, and/or convert an S52 OBD2 M3 to OBD1 and have the best of both worlds.

People here may disagree with me, but I never see E36 M3s with only 86k miles sell for as low as $8.5k. I'd say that's a good deal, if the car does not have other underlying issues.
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For sale: E30/E36 front sway links
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Last edited by ZeGerman; 10-22-2012 at 06:39 PM.
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  #11  
Old 10-22-2012, 07:32 PM
Nackem Nackem is offline
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Right, thanks for all the input I really do appreciate it! I'm gonna try and stitch up the $8.5k and possibly pull the trigger!
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  #12  
Old 10-22-2012, 08:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nackem View Post
Right, thanks for all the input I really do appreciate it! I'm gonna try and stitch up the $8.5k and possibly pull the trigger!
Odd question: how are you going to get it for $8.5k if he's already rejected $8.7k?
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  #13  
Old 10-22-2012, 10:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EnserioJose View Post
Odd question: how are you going to get it for $8.5k if he's already rejected $8.7k?
Details, details...
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For sale: E30/E36 front sway links
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  #14  
Old 10-22-2012, 10:36 PM
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I think its a fair price for that car provided he isn't hiding anything.
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  #15  
Old 10-23-2012, 05:17 AM
Nackem Nackem is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EnserioJose View Post
Odd question: how are you going to get it for $8.5k if he's already rejected $8.7k?
Well anyone can "say" they have an offer for X amount but that doesn't mean you can't persuade them with a quick sell. I also think he just had a deal fall through with someone so I may prey on that fact. Kill or be killed lol.
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  #16  
Old 10-23-2012, 05:26 AM
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bimmer claus bimmer claus is offline
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http://buffalo.craigslist.org/cto/3285331680.html <---- just saying car sold in like a week cuz i called a week after it went up and he said it just sold haha was in a minor accident but regardless very nice looking car so im not sure alot depends on location too
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Last edited by bimmer claus; 10-23-2012 at 05:39 AM.
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  #17  
Old 10-23-2012, 06:13 AM
Nackem Nackem is offline
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Im sure the salvage title had a little to do with the price, plus bringing that into VA would probably be a nightmare with the salvage title since VA hates cars in general. Definitely a good find especially for a track car!
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  #18  
Old 10-23-2012, 06:15 AM
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bimmer claus bimmer claus is offline
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yeah i figured as much so if that m3 does have a clean title like fore mentioned id go for it man could be a steal esp with that low mileage and if the thing is unmolested its a huge win for you
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