My good friend....just bought a used VERY clean and VERY good condition 1997 318is (5 speed manual, heated seats, 6 disc changer, 88K miles) for....$7,200.
Just keep looking...you'll find one.
But the killer thing...is insurance.
I'd start with the 318. I'm not sure how much more the e36 (95ish) 325s/328s are.