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$7K for a salvage car? I would pass.
 

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I'd have an independent look it over top to bottom. These are old cars and near the point that a broken tail light is considered totaled. If a top to bottom inspection w 4 wheel alignment says it's a good car, I'd probably take it and smile.

That is, if you are prepared to work on a near 15 year old car that will surely need in the not to distant future: struts, front suspension re-do, disa valve, vanos, coils, fuel pump, etc ...

Jim
 

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Good points, MKJS.
 

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With a private party value ranging from $4800-$6100 I would run far away from it. They are asking premium price for a salvage title. And, if it were me, those pictures speak volumes about the previous owner and the dealer selling it. Take a look at the interior. I know it seems like something small but that floor mat is toast. Look at how dirty it is under the hood. Check that interior trim. Is it factory or is that a vinyl wrap silver? Do these things mean it is a bad car? No. But for the price they are asking EVERYTHING should be spotless. Like Jim said, at 15 years old with 74000 miles you are coming up on thousands in maintenance. Anywhere from 2000-6000 depending on whether or not you do the work yourself. Ask for receipts. Who did the body work? Do they have ALL maint. records from new? Who maintained it? It's a nice looking car, I give you that. But at that price.....NO WAY! Now if you could prove prior maint. AND body shop receipts AND get down around $4000-5000 it would be much more realistic. I'm not sure I would even go $4,000 if it were me. The salvage title is a killer. There are plenty of nice examples still around to settle for a salvage even if you have to drive a few hours to find it. This is just my humble opinion. If money isn't an issue go for it. From a maintenance standpoint the Acura is probably hands down the winner. Gas, oil and filters, gotta love those Japanese cars! They go forever.
 

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Wingnut
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gotta agree with everything stated up to now...that price and a salvage title iwould be a dealbreaker to me
 

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It is pretty pricey for a salvage title but I'm going to play devils advocate on this one.

It is a 530i Sport Manual. Rarer than most.
Paint looks to be in good condition
Aftermarket cup holders are a good thing
Trim looks to be OEM; not very many people would do such a good job on the shifter or cig flap if it were wrapped lol.

Most mods are good and show that the car was enthusiast owed. As long as they are tasteful. Never got why people prefer stock cars cause those are the ones driven by clueless A to B drivers. Give me the ones with DISA upgrade, aluminum rads, flip up center console, etc... One owned by an owner that cares.
 

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To expand on my earlier post. Don't be afraid of a vehicle with over 100,000 miles as long as it has been well maintained. You may even be in better shape than the one with less miles if all those maintenance items are already checked off. These cars are solid. There are some posts on the forums of these cars with over 300,000 miles.
 

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It is pretty pricey for a salvage title but I'm going to play devils advocate on this one.

It is a 530i Sport Manual. Rarer than most.
Paint looks to be in good condition
Aftermarket cup holders are a good thing
Trim looks to be OEM; not very many people would do such a good job on the shifter or cig flap if it were wrapped lol.

Most mods are good and show that the car was enthusiast owed. As long as they are tasteful. Never got why people prefer stock cars cause those are the ones driven by clueless A to B drivers. Give me the ones with DISA upgrade, aluminum rads, flip up center console, etc... One owned by an owner that cares.
Agreed. That is what I was referring to in my post. I don't mind mods either but if my floor mat looked like that and my engine compartment wasn't clean I'd kick my own ass. Now take into account that this is a dealer selling it. 110 bucks for floor mats and another 100 to pay someone to detail the engine bay. You won't part with a couple of hundred bucks to sell a car at a premium? That says to me they did as little as possible to move this vehicle. I wouldn't be surprised if they used aftermarket sheet metal for the body repairs. Like I said just ask for the receipts. I'm not knocking the car......only the price. Rare doesn't mean collectors item. Especially with a salvage. I would assume that it's going to be a daily driver. Plus if the op is also looking at an Acura I would say that rarity isn't that important and would suggest that maybe another E39 or perhaps an automatic would save him a ton of money.
 

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I totally agree. I wouldn't buy it either. Never said I would. I wouldn't touch a salvage title, but that's just me. But a dirty drivers floor mat is fine IMHO lol. These cars aren't Rolls Royces or anything. It comes with the territory when you're dealing with most car dealerships.
 

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Salvage title and from a used car dealer...personally I would skip it just for that, there are plenty more worthwhile cars to look at. Even if they have excellent documentation including hundreds of pictures regarding the insurance claim and it didn't bend anything important, an actual BMW dealership probably wouldn't be asking that much and it would be cleaner.
 

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I totally agree. I wouldn't buy it either. Never said I would. I wouldn't touch a salvage title, but that's just me. But a dirty drivers floor mat is fine IMHO lol. These cars aren't Rolls Royces or anything. It comes with the territory when you're dealing with most car dealerships.
Normally dirty floor mats wouldn't bother me that much either but at seven grand that car better be something special. That's priced over blue book WITH a salvage. I'm thinking at that price I want to see some Dinan upgrades. That was the point I was trying to make.:D
 

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I'm a bit surprised no one mentioned the issues of getting any kind of insurance on a salvage car. Some insurance companies won't touch a salvage title, while others will charge a much higher premium, regardless of the real reason it was deemed "salvage".
Plus, if it's sold again, it will have a lesser value due to the salvage title.
 

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Drive it, fall in love with it, explain that the car has been totaled and will never be paid out on again by insurance so it's a $3,500 regardless of how well maintained it is. Who will insure you if you have to finance the car? AND: You're buying a 14 year old car so prepare yourself to do a lot of maintenance before she's "reliable". Since they claim to be BMW specialists, ask them to show you under the hood and behind the fender skirt where wrinkles from crashes might appear. These guys sound like they flip cars for a living. Please research really hard and find that you can get an M5 for close to the same amount of money with a regular title. Cars.com has them staring at $7,555 for a 2000 M5. (My 2 cents)
 

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I have the same color combo. Looks good even when it runs bad. Acura TL is plagued with torque converter issues too.. Might as well go BMW.
 

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Keep life simple and keep as much of your money in your pocket as you can. My 98 528i 5 Speed is for sale in Ct Details on Craig, ny. looking for 3500. Car is perfect, montreal Blue w tan leather
 
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