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E21, E30 General discussion and technical help for 1975-1991 3 series cars.

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Old 08-25-2006, 09:57 PM   #1
yellow_dog9

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Always wanted one but ... 320i Help

Must say I've read quite a few threads here and I'm very impressed with the knowledge and organization. Nice job.

Here's my question. I've been looking for a 320i for a while. I think I've found one in really nice shape (in CA and I'm in Boston but thats a different issue), I'm struggling to put a value on it (both personal value and intrinsic value). In other words I don't want to do something stupid. Here's a description along with a link to some pics (I hope the link is not a no no - its not an add or anything). Anyway thanks in advance for any input.
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83 BMW 320i 79K ORG MI !! DRIVES GREAT !! RECARO SEATS WITH NO CUTS ICE COLD A/C BLACK/BLACK SUNROOF BRAND NEW MICHELLIN TIRES FACTORY STEREO FACTORY RIMS 5 SPEED TRANS GARAGE KEPT AND COVERD NO ACCDENTS

http://www.renovationshomeimp.com/faqs.htm
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Old 08-25-2006, 10:00 PM   #2
witeshark
 
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Welcome to the forums A really good 320i would be a treasure IMO. Oh, and BMW's are not great snow cars Some 320i info here

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Old 08-25-2006, 10:18 PM   #3
xsperf
 
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how much, yea its perfectly clean, but dont get ripped off on it, b/c even if it is clean, it still is an 83, and trust me after a while your gonna want more power... etc etc
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Old 08-25-2006, 10:31 PM   #4
yellow_dog9

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I'm not worried about the snow - I have a 4WD truck for that.

All in (including the shipping to MA) it would be over $5k. But if I buy a $1,000 fixer version it could cost me at least $4k to get it looking anywhere close to this one. Plus I'm better at fixing kitchens and baths than cars.
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Old 08-26-2006, 05:29 AM   #5
Dudesky

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No power, but hella lots of fun to drive! Pick up the latest issue of Bimmer magazine (Oct '06). They have an expansive E21 buyer's guide in it.
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Old 08-26-2006, 10:21 AM   #6
xsperf
 
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lol, i dunno man, do you want a classic car, or just a bimmer? b/c you could get a hell of a bimmer for 5K... but if thats what you want, good luck with it, its extremely clean, and that definately helps
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I keep forgetting that - I have a great memory but it doesn't last long

CRS disease = Can't Remeber Shit
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Old 04-08-2007, 03:13 AM   #7
osaywrd

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a good daily driver/classic if that is what you are looking for IMO
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Old 04-08-2007, 05:49 AM   #8
3050rpm
 
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Hmmm, I'm a bit confused, the link doesn't seem to match the description, one thing being a 323i vs. a 320i... Anyway, I had my '82 320i for 13 years, and had a ball with it, over 300,000 miles of fun. Very few problems, aside from those normally associated with so many years, e.g. replace worn steering rack, shifter bushings, etc.

There were two areas susceptible to rust, the rear trunk panel where it meets the bumper, and also the seam toward the front of the trunk, by the back of the back seat, so I'd check those areas carefully.

As to the power, that didn't present itself as an issue to me, in part because I think standing start acceleration runs are stupid, and also because that 4-cyl. engine was a delight and could go into its own version of afterburners at about 3000 rpm and above, and let's face it, anybody who doesn't coordinate his gears with his accelerator pedal can't call himself a real man. Then again, my car didn't have a/c (which was fine with me, the ventilation system did a fine job), so that may have made a difference.

As I alluded earlier, this car is a lot of fun in the dry, but you hafta curb your enthusiasm in the wet, and in snow, and if you do use it in the snow, be sure to add some additional weight over the rear axles, up by the front of the trunk, to gain a bit more traction. I don't know whether it's the weight distribution, the suspension, the power train, or whatever, but these things are twitchy in wet weather. Something substantial in the trunk, but not overly heavy, like a few copies of Schopenhauer or Heidegger, oughta do it.

As to pricing, I dunno, I'm not sure these cars fall into any informal designation of "classic," and the $5000 may be on the high side, but if it is in top notch shape, obviously it'll command some premium. I think they cost ~$13,000 back then, so paying 5/13 of the original value of a 24-year old car will require some careful consideration.
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