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E30 (1982 - 1993)
God's Chariot. The E30 was produced primarily from 1982 through 1991. The cabriolet was the one exception which was produced through 1993.

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Old 09-25-2013, 06:12 PM
BIGBOI3 BIGBOI3 is offline
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Location: California
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Thoughts/Suggestions on E30 318

I have always had a sweet spot for a really cute E30 (but it seemed to be a car for me in teh future). I am actually looking for another BMW (E39) but until I find my exact one (hard to fine), I really need a car ASAP that I won't want to kill myself when I step inside.

Fast forward to now. I always walk past this beautiful 1991 2dr 318i (s?) 5sp E30 on my way to work and the other day I left the guy a note telling him to contact me if he were to sell it. He called me and told me he has had it for 15 ish years and it has 180,xxx miles on it. The interior is ok, seats are pretty cracked up though.

I looked up on KBB and the farthest back it went was a 1993, which in excellent condition for this many miles is around $1,400.

1) I have seen many E30's go 200k, 300k plus miles, so is this 180xxx miles no biggie, if he has maintained it well? What if only avg maintenance?

3) What questions should I ask him about what things have been maintained/replaced?

4) What should I look out for thin these cars?

5) What is a decent thing to offer him? If a lot of people are saying go for it on (1), then if I get it for under a 1000, I think I will be pleased.

6) Other thoughts on the car, how is the ride comfort, etc.

Thanks a bunch guys! I really appreciate it.
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Old 09-25-2013, 06:33 PM
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hornhospital hornhospital is offline
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Re: Thoughts/Suggestions on E30 318

Those things will run forever on even minimal maintenance. No timing belt to worry about, very easy on gas, hp and torque almost the same as an M20. If the body is in good shape and you can get it for less than $1400, BUY IT. Even $1400 isn't bad. I don't know how the rest of the E30 regulars feel, but a 91 318is is on my " I will own one one day" list.
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Last edited by hornhospital; 09-25-2013 at 06:38 PM.
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Old 09-28-2013, 09:00 AM
bimmerized bimmerized is offline
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If you can get any M42 318i(s) E30 in good condition for anywhere near $1400, buy it. They are collectors' cars now and the KBB value is way off. People are paying $4000 for decent ones, that are far from perfect, at least in CA.

180K miles is nothing for an M42. It can go 300 easily. Listen for noise coming from the timing chain guides, the rest is common to all cars. PS is prob leaking, the pumps do go out. A/C is prob not working either. If it's a 91 and a 2dr, then it's an "is". don't bother w/ the M10 318i unless you want fuel economy.

As far as power, it has sufficient, but not much until over 4500 rpm. The motor seem extremely flexible and loves to rev to redline.
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