In Reply to: Take it for a drive before accepting it. Listen.. posted by Alex on April 15, 1999 at 18:47:45:
: ...for rattles, braking vibration problem (as experienced by many E46 owners here), check radio/CD for defects (take a CD with you and pop it in for a listen), closely inspect the paint for any dings, inconsistencies in paint quality (in daytime), check for low miles upon pickup (should not be mor than 15 or 20), and listen for rattling of doors on your test drive.
: Good luck.
: PS: Always pick your car in broad daytime. It is really easy to miss paint or ding defects at night.
My detailer claims that fluorescent light is the most unforgiving, and shows every little imperfection. You might also ask if you can give it a visual examination in the service bay area. I wish I had, as I have a nasty scratch on the bumper of my Miata that I believe was on the car when I got it.