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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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Old 05-04-2019, 02:41 PM
OtakuFantasy OtakuFantasy is offline
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Join Date: May 2019
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Mein Auto:
Buying my first car

Should I buy this BMW i'm pretty nervous:
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Old 05-04-2019, 11:18 PM
hornhospital's Avatar
hornhospital hornhospital is offline
D'oh, You Kids!
Location: In the Grumpy Chair
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Mein Auto: E24x2,E36x3,E30x2, F150
Welcome to Bimmerfest!

No, don't buy that one. It looks like it's been beat to death. For $1500 you're bound to be able to find one with no body damage. Keep looking.
Quotes to live by:
guessing gets expensive...drivinfaster
nothing is more expensive than a cheap BMW...c4harpe13
buying a ratty example (of a BMW) is a parasitic relationship.(and you ain't the mosquito) 7pilot
Ken Kanne, Silverhill, AL, Bimmerfest Site Moderator
BMW-CCA #441426

1993 325is M3 clone"Ashlyn"; 1993 325is "Elvira"; 1985 635CSi "Katja"; 1984 633CSi "Sylvia"; 1987 325is "Odette";1995 318is"Bebe "; 1985 325e "Hazel Ann"

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Old 05-06-2019, 12:32 PM
u.nanimous u.nanimous is offline
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Location: SE Michigan
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 5,227
Mein Auto: 1999 740iS, 2008 335xi
This one that you posted in the E34 forum looks a lot better, although it is an E46. The E36 you linked in that same post sold for $550 so I'm wondering what is your budget (purchase + ongoing maintenance)? Mechanics don't charge less just because the car is older so will you be doing the work yourself? Looking at 15-25 year old cars may seem like a good cheap idea but in some cases that's enough time/mileage for everything to have worn out twice - ask for maintenance records. The good news with BMW is the I4 & I6 engines are excellent for getting well over 300k miles out of them just by not overheating them and the manual transmissions are basically bulletproof, it is just all the other little things that add up depending on what model you finally decide on (brakes, suspension, cooling system, regulators, pixels, etc).

Please note that pictures on the web should not be considered a reliable way of separating the good from the bad. Yes the E36 you linked is beat to death and this E46 you linked in the other forum looks clean, but a good wash and lighting can still make a crappy car look good. The only real way is to see it in person, drive it around, check the fluids, put it on a lift, etc. Take someone with you who either knows BMW's or at least has the sense/ability to talk you out of a bad impulsive decision in case you just get too excited about buying a car to say no.

2005 Venture Extended LT - what else you gonna drive when you have 6 kids, cargo and still want better than 10MPG
1999 740iA - long term project/summer DD
2000 Impala LS - RIP 12/23/2016, officially totaled by insurance company
2001 330xiA - fXtXeX/son project - now April's car
2008 335xiA - winterbeater Impala replacement
2002 530i/5 - 2.5 years searching...and it is John's car
1989 535i/5 - the spare car
2002 325xiA - to be Charlotte's when she gets her license (?2019?)

Last edited by u.nanimous; 05-06-2019 at 12:41 PM.
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Old 05-17-2019, 04:28 AM
touringexpert touringexpert is offline
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first, u should know what would be the purpose. Is it everyday car, project or missle car ur looking for?
and I highly recommend ask someone for help in searching for ur first car, cuz u can buy a junk, E36 is really cool, but there're really a lot of dead bodies, be careful)
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Old 05-20-2019, 11:41 AM
h82crash h82crash is offline
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Location: Durango/Bayfield CO
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Posts: 12
Mein Auto: "93 E36 coupe
The e36 is my favorite body style. That said, I'm very disappointed in the part support and even enthusiast support for it. Parts are scarce and expensive compared to other models. I acquired a much better example for free and having second thoughts about keeping it because no matter how nice I make it, it will never be worth more than $1500.
Past cars:
2003 E39 530i
1998 E39 528i
1995 E34 530i
1988 E28 528i M30 swap
1987 E30 2.7i
1972 2002 5sp swap

My 2.7i M20
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Old 06-09-2019, 02:45 AM
Nasher16 Nasher16 is offline
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Mein Auto: 97 328is
If you buy a old beat up one like I did just be ready to open up your wallet. All I gotta say lol

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Old 06-09-2019, 07:05 AM
luigi524td luigi524td is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: The State of Southern NJ
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Posts: 4,043
Mein Auto: '17 540xDrive; '98 Z3 2.8
Thanks for the easy question: NO!
A driver's "FIRST CAR" should NOT be a test of the buyer's mechanical skills or financial ability.
My opinions are free - you'll get exactly what you pay for!
Current: '17 540 xDrive | '13 X1 MSport | '98 Z3 2.8
Past: '13 535xDrive|'07 530xi|'01 740i|'98 740i|'94 740i |'86 524TD
"Seek and ye shall find" - start with your owner's manual!

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