1985 325e- Should I? - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums

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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 04-07-2005, 08:25 PM
Mercski Mercski is offline
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Location: Oklahoma City
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Mein Auto: Ford F150
1985 325e- Should I?

I currently drive a 2001 F150....I have about a 150 mile round trip commute daily.

As you can imagine, gas prices are killing me!

I have been in the market for a small commuter car and I found a 1985 325e....
It has 168,000 miles, it has a new clutch, engine ran strong, no oil leaks, etc.

The inside is a little ragged out, dash cracked.....I am willing to fix that stuff up...my concerns are about the life expectancy of the engine/tranny.... I need it to be dependable.
I don't need it to last forever, but I would like to get 2 or 3 years minimum without major engine issues? Am I crazy?

What can I expect from this year/model as far as trouble to look for/ longevity, etc?

Thanks in advance,
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Old 04-07-2005, 08:55 PM
Lanc3r Lanc3r is offline
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Do you have service records?

Can you take it to a mechanic?
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Old 04-07-2005, 09:22 PM
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Jim H Jim H is offline
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Mein Auto: 2006 330i Sport/6spd
I would take it to a mechanic for review, and as the other poster mentioned, service records help. On the plus side, e30s are great cars and can last a very long time with proper maintenance. I have a 1987 325e that I bought in 2002, and had for 2.5 years with very few problems. Most importantly, it NEVER broke down on me. I don't know what kind of mileage you currently get, but my e30 never got amazing gas mileage. I guess about 28 PURE highway with not a lot of hills or traffic. It dropped to upper teens in town.

Oh, and you should be able to find a used dash for under $100 and replace it in a day. I did it with my car. It was a pain, but it made all the difference in the otherwise good interior. I could send you instructions if you needed them (PM me if you need them later).
My Ride:
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Old 04-07-2005, 10:01 PM
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pup pup is offline
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Mein Auto: 89/94 325is 02 325i 05mcs
i had an 85 eta that i sold to a friend when it had 297k on the clock, nothing but the usual maintanence items. he is currently putting an i engine in it as he would like a bit more power and came across an inexpensive motor.
have it checked over, in particular, find out the mileage on the timing belt. if it goes you'll need at least a new head.
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Old 04-10-2005, 04:11 PM
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9x16 9x16 is offline
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Mein Auto: 89 BMW 325i (4 door)
I had an 85 325e that I sold to my mechanic.His still driving it and it has 260.000KM.The only big thing needed to be replaced was the timing belt/water pump.The "e" is a low rpm car therefore it cant really be abused.So I would say go for it.They are like a diesel,they will run when the currently new cars are in the junkyyard.
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Old 04-10-2005, 04:32 PM
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gojira-san gojira-san is offline
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I agree with the other posters here. If you have good maintenance records and it checks out with a mechanic, it should run for quite a while. The trick with BMWs is to keep up on the little things before they become big things. The I-6 engine is bulletproof and will give very long service if maintained.

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Old 04-21-2005, 11:13 AM
99flhr 99flhr is offline
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I realise this heresy but here goes, If you are only seeking a "commuter car" and are more of a truck guy (assuming .99 a gal fuel) You`d probably save more in the long run by finding a low mileage 97 or 98 Ford Escort ZX-2 or similar econo-box. Cheap to buy, run, maintain. my .02
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Old 04-26-2005, 03:06 PM
Fragmaster170 Fragmaster170 is offline
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Mein Auto: 1985 325E
I also own an '85 325e, love the car and have had not a single problem with it. Of course it still having under 100k/mi might have something to do with that. From what I hear grabbing a chip bumps that fuel economy up quite a bit.
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