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Unread 11-05-2015, 05:49 PM   #1
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Question So I'm thinking about trying to buy my boyfriend a car for Xmas

I literally know nothing about cars and I'm only here to get an idea of different gift ideas. I may go all out and just buy him a car if the price is right. I found a 1991 BMW E30 325i Sedan 5 speed and from the pictures it seems to be in okay condition. They want $3,000 for it, and considering my truck was $32,000, I can't wrap my head around whether they're asking too much or not.... since I don't know crap about cars. I need to know if it would be worth the investment given the problems the ad says it has. He likes to work on cars, so small problems are okay. I just don't want it to cost him too much to work on.

here's the ad:
1991 BMW 325i 5 speed sedan
376,000 miles on chassis

Brand New Exedy OEM clutch(installed less than 100 miles ago)
H&R Springs
Tokiko Blue shocks
Catless straight pipes
M-sport steering wheel and shift knob
Z3 shifter
E30 euro hella "smiley" headlamps(not installed)
4 spare BMW "bottlecap" wheels with decent tires
Brand new spark plugs, distributer cap and rotor
Brand new output shaft seal and new trans fluid
Engine was rebuilt less than 20,000 miles ago and apparently there is some sort of tune or "chip" that the car has and must run on premium fuel according to the guy I bought it from.

The bad:
A/c compressor was removed by previous owner
Steering rack leaks
Broken emergency brake cables
Axle boots torn
Minor rust on rear quarter arches and under passenger side tail lamp
passenger side interior door handle doesn't work
Passenger side seat cover torn
Headliner is coming down over drivers seat
Diff cover seeping fluid
Both rear window regulators broken
Key doesn't work in the drivers side door

The suspension is very tight. Bushings and links all look good. I have new tie rod ends to go with it since I was going to replace the rack. The car is in really good shape for the miles and age.
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Unread 11-05-2015, 08:40 PM   #2
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Sounds like it needs a lot of work and with BMW parts costing a fortune here in the states, it can get exspensive quick. If he's looking for something to fix up, go for it and ask for a lower price, otherwise stay away...
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Unread 11-05-2015, 09:42 PM   #3
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You shouldn't buy modified cars.

You really shouldn't buy modified German cars.

You really really shouldn't buy modified E30s.
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Unread 11-05-2015, 11:42 PM   #4
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Are they **** cars or something? From what I know, he wants one. He used to have a similar car but wrecked it during an ice storm.

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Unread 11-06-2015, 10:10 AM   #5
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No, they can be perfectly reliable and are typically fun cars to drive. You're very thoughtful and generous for looking around for something like this for your boyfriend.

You will want to buy one as close to stock as possible. The one you pulled up is heavily modified and has probably had the absolute piss beaten out of it. At least the seller took the time and was honest enough to list out the problems the car has, or at least the ones they're aware of. You probably won't be so lucky with a lot of car sales in this price range.

If you're up for spending about 3 grand, why not go for a E36 instead? There's a lot of those out there for around $3k and would probably be a better bet. I would also highly recommend seeing if you can find a friend who DOES know about cars to come with you in person to see any car you're thinking of buying.
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Unread 11-06-2015, 10:14 PM   #6
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Thank you so much. I'll keep an eye out for an E36 and I will definitely make one of his friends go with me to look at any car I consider, if my funds allow it. I'll continue to post asking for help, I'm sure, but this is a great start. Thank you again!

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Unread 11-07-2015, 11:51 AM   #7
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Default E36

Found this ad for an E36 for $2400. Would this be a better bet?

ad:
93 E36 Coupe
176,XXX Miles and climbing
5 Speed
LSD
Leather Heated Seats
SunRoof
Depo Glass headlights

CONS: Needs 02 Sensor installed (have sensor), No amp so no radio, Rear brakes are due soon, and Pass window is off track, stays up perfect, Driver side seat switch

Pros: Fresh Oil Change, Fresh Valve Cover Gasket, New Starter, New PS Pump, New Control Arms, Control Arm Bushings, New Sway Bar Links, New Front pads and rotors
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Unread 11-08-2015, 02:21 AM   #8
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Looks good though it's really tough to tell from the information given. Might be worth going and taking a look at, at least.
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