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If you like turning a wrench, buy a project E30 M3 (archive)

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Posted by B. Wheaton on January 27, 2002 at 12:27:12:

In Reply to: should I dive into ownership? posted by MFB on January 27, 2002 at 09:07:01:

You will learn everything there is to know about the car and you will know for a fact the exact condition of it, hence no major "surprises" down the line. It'll take some time and a lot of effort but consider paying 3K for a fixer-upper, putting 12K into it to do everything just right. If you found a nice example for 15K it would save you a little work but you wouldn't have learned anything and you wouldn't really know the car's maintenance history. If I had a garage and the time I'd get a project car over a cream puff any day.

Just an opinion.

Brandon Wheaton
1989 E30 M3

Last summer I was serious about acquiring an E30 M3. I traveled many hours to test drive a handful, but they all were in need of vast amounts of attention. Having read that the S14 must be maintained well, I was soured and gave up. Now I'm back to the issue. I autocross my E30 318is, and my 95 325is, but would rather be running a nice M3.

Should I dive in? What should be my top considerations? I turn my own wrenches, and I'm not afraid to tackle any job. What should I expect to pay for a nice runner.?


72 2002 (headed to Spartanburg this week)
91 318is
95 325is
thinking of moving the 318is out and an M3 in.

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