I’d like to try a social experiment if you’ll allow me; I’d take an E30 M3 listing and say absolutely nothing about it. My hypothesis is that it wouldn’t matter; the car would still generate lots of comments both positive and negative, outlining both the strengths of the E30 and the rapid appreciation of the market. The convergence of factors that has resulted in the M3 market as we see it today is the evolution of not only a naturally occurring timeline coupled with a increase of personal wealth vis-a-vis the ownership group juxtaposed with those who actually ponder ownership. This, in turn, can be viewed as in part the skeuomorphic racing details of the M3 coupled with the natural analogue interface of the E30 chassis. Immersion in the marketplace has resulted in datafication as we try to quantify the various appeals of the models and even sub-models, while the scalability of the marketplace seems to utilize fuzzy logic – models constantly morphing in and out of vogue as the relative price of ownership fluctuates. Modularity in the E30 platform has not helped but convoluted the matter. Coupled with the emergence of internet fora the M3 is the first truly viral car. The rapid influx of various examples in order to take advantage of these previously stated confluence of factors has resulted in, ironically, crowdsourcing in an effort to elicit an explanation:
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Let’s be honest; going to the track is a bit of an addiction. Few make it out the other side without having at least contemplated heavy and expensive upgrades to their cars. The symptoms of the illness vary from patient to patient, but most exhibit similar characteristics; starting with a somewhat sporty road car, the owners quickly engage in a series of modifications that will make them “faster”. These modifications nearly always degrade the everyday usefulness of your road-going machine, and ultimately no matter how much you modify a street car, it will still be a compromised design. You simply can’t create a track weapon that is road-legal without some compromise. The result, then, is bobble-headed enthusiasts driving their barely-suspended, over cambered and too loud cars around looking – let’s be truthful – a bit of a fool. What’s a smarter option? Well, if you really want to drive faster on track, you find a slow car that someone has already made into a racer. First off, you’re getting into a more pure track car. They’re not road legal generally, so all of the goodies that make life bearable on the street are gone making them lighter. If the build was done right and well, you’re probably saving a lot of money, too. But the real benefit of getting a slower car is that you’re doing more of the driving – ask any racer, and most will say that extracting maximum performance from a slow car is more rewarding than allowing the computers in your GT-R to obliterate the pavement for you. Two of the most popular German cars to hit the track in are here today – the venerable E30 in 325is form, and the iconic Porsche 944. Which will hit the finish line first?
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 BMW 325is on eBay
Following on the heels of the 1990 BMW M3 we featured last week, here comes an even later model 1991 M3 for sale in New Hampshire. This car has slightly less mileage and has a rebuilt, blueprinted motor under the hood and wears the iconic Alpine White on the outside. Bidding is strong on this one, eclipsing the $30,100 that the M3 from last week fetched.
Click for details: 1991 BMW M3 on eBay
I have a confession to make. Speaking as a former owner of a BMW E30, I’ve fallen out of love with them. Blasphemy, right? Hear me out. I feel as if this car has become a bit of a hipster in the world of modern classics. It’s a fantastic car, with plenty of engine options and body styles to choose from, not to mention good roadholding abilities. But somehow the myriad of aftermarket modifications coupled with the M3 pricing craze that has trickled down to the rest of the range leaves me a bit unmoved. After piloting GCFSB co-manager Carter’s race prepped Audi Coupe GT this summer, it made me realize there are plenty of other interesting, more exclusive machines out there that can be had for much less money. Subsequently, my attention has shifted to some nineties rarities like the Audi S6 Avant and Porsche 968.
This E30 M3 for sale in California isn’t a clapped out high mileage example, but it has been used and is described as reliable. Perfect, then, for the person who might want to use one of these early ///M machines daily.
Click for details: 1990 BMW M3 on eBay
Rounding off Turkey Day here at GCFSB, here’s a car that’s could be considered anything but a turkey. A tasty, late model E30 in the form of a 318is. Known in some circles as the “poor man’s M3″, this 3er had the new 1.8 liter M42 four cylinder engine with an updated Bosch Motronic system. With 138 horsepower, this was no dragster, but had excellent weight distribution and was the gateway drug to many great BMWs that would appear over the course of the 1990s. Even though E30 production was soon to be phased out, this model would reaffirm that the 3 series was still the vehicle of choice for those moving up in the world. This 318is comes to us from our reader Corey, who also happens to be the seller.