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1997 BMW M3

Feeling brave? The E36 M3 has been a fantastic performance deal for quite a few years, but we’re pretty sure that thanks to it’s dad, the E30 M3, prices are on the rise. A fair amount of these cars were modded to death, driven to death, or became donors for motor swaps into earlier chassis. But every once in a while you come across one that’s covered some miles and been loved – even if it wasn’t the way you would love it. Today’s example is a rare Techno Violet coupe with some light modifications and some not so light mileage:


Year: 1997
Model: M3
Engine: 3.2 liter inline-6
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 229,000 mi
Price: $5,999.99 Buy It Now


1997 BMW M3 2 door coupe 5-speed with 228,000 highway miles. Car runs and drives like it has 20,000 miles. No issues whatsoever. The paint is immaculate, nice clean, no rust, couple of minor scratches but no dents, very, very clean body for a 16 year old vehicle. The car has Pioneer 7 inch screen with navigation, Bluetooth, a basic sound system with kicker sub in the rear, a back up camera when you put it in reverse. The vehicle is lowered, new glass German headlights with Angel Eyes, HID system headlights and foglights, Euro eyelids, custom two tone suede/leather interior, suede headliner, brand new tires all around, 99 M3 steering wheel, etc. What you see is what you get. No engine check lights, no malfunctions, no leaks and the AC is cold as a refrigerator. Just one sold car with no stories attached. A lot of time and money was spent. Please no crazy low offers, let’s no waste each other’s time. I have a 100% eBay feedback and I stand behind my product. Good luck… lowered price!

If you have any questions please free free to give me a call, my name is Alex and my cell is (201) 926-8725.


I went on a several minute rant regarding “Angel Eyes” to my wife just the other night when we were looking for an E46 M3. They bother me when they’re not on the cars they’re supposed to be on. Maybe you like them, but they really tick me off. You know what else ticks me off? Headlight “eyebrows”. Why would you cover up your headlights? I don’t get it. And while I value good music, I’ve never been a fan of cars that have big stereo systems. They never seem to work correctly for anyone other than the original owner, and even then, only occasionally. I’m sure there are plenty of examples that prove me wrong, but I haven’t seen them yet. All of that said, the interior recovering doesn’t bother me and reminds me a similar B5 Audi interiors. While the M Contours and the rear spoiler don’t really suit me, I believe they’re correct for the luxury package and were reasonably popular items. For me, I prefer the earlier wheels and spoiler-free design, but as I’m reminded occasionally, it’s not all about me.

We’ve shown a few M3s over the past couple of months, including this Red 1995 that failed to sell at it’s original asking price. With two and a half times as many miles but at 1/3 the original asking price, is this E36 reasonably priced? If this were a 1995 Audi S6, I don’t think I’d be very worried, but this many miles on an E36 M3 gives me pause, especially when I see some modifications – perhaps it’s unfair of me to judge in this manor and stereotype, but I associate these types of mods with cars being driven hard, even if they’re very much loved by their owners. That said, how much less expensive can an E36 M3 really be?



  1. G
    G September 3, 2013

    Also, purchased at an auto auction and now up for sale in Queens… plus the wrong steering wheel for that model year. I’d say stay away unless a thorough inspection checks out. Too bad, because I love that color.

  2. KevinR
    KevinR September 3, 2013

    It’s hard to say what to do with this one. I’m not a fan of purple. I know it’s rare; perhaps there is a good reason for that fact.

    The spoiler was optional on all M3s; not my style but it can be considered correct. The Contours are correct. The steering wheel, though not correct for this year, is a simple swap that many people have done. I prefer the original wheel, but to each his own, I guess.

    The stereo, if installed with the proper wiring harness, is no big deal to reverse. The factory radios in these cars were basically garbage so it’s not surprising it has been replaced. The biggest question mark is how the subwoofer is installed and wired. I could do without the fold out screen.

    I hate the eyebrows and agree that angel eyes don’t work on cars that didn’t come that way from the factory. My personal opinion is that HID retrofits are dangerous to oncoming drivers.

    The biggest problem for me is that the car has 228k miles on it and there is little to no discussion about the mechanical condition and any refreshing that may have been done. Granted the car is only $6,000 but you could easily double or triple that amount if you have to start rehabbing or replacing key components.

  3. Raymond
    Raymond September 3, 2013

    Agree with the above. My take is that if the mechanical condition of the car can be verified, to me this is a perfect weekend track toy. You could even seemingly drive to and from the track in comfort. And at $6k and 228k miles, you won’t shed any tears if the car picks up some bumps and bruises.

  4. […] wanted; but I’d keep them all in place. To me this car is an interesting counterpoint to the high mile M3 I wrote up the other day; I feel like I’d have to undo everything the owner upgraded on that […]

  5. Scott J.
    Scott J. September 4, 2013

    Ditto regarding the aftermarket stereo comment. My E46 M3 came with a poorly installed stereo system that sounds terrible. Wires all over the trunk and a giant amp but missing subwoofer. When I pulled a door panel to replace a broken speaker cover I noticed the aftermarket speakers were mounted with sheet metal screws right into the door versus the factory bracket. When one of the crappy aftermarket tweeters starting crackling and buzzing I pulled the rear panel and noticed the tweeter was glued into place to make it stay. Urrrr!

  6. MDriver
    MDriver September 4, 2013

    no mention of records of any kind.other than “everything works…a/c is like a refrigerator”….
    even at 6k I’d still to see what maintenance was done here….
    the mods…well..those are the mods…if they work for you…then you got a car already done…if they don’t…then you move on…
    Techno violet is not common…matter of taste…personally I like it.
    the interior…I’m a purist…when the hides go in my 95 they will be replaced w/OEM leather.
    the steering wheel…my only concern is that the airbag did not deploy on the original one..otherwise no biggie.
    the stereo…yes as someone mentioned the original one is CRAP…with CRAP sound…dealer had to replace mine twice!….
    rims…well here is the rub…those are M-Contour wheels which were standard on cars with the Luxury package…and cars with the Luxury package did not have Vaders to the best of my recollection…so something has been flipped here….best wheels IMHO are the alloys that came on the M3 lightweight which you could have ordered as an option…
    all this being said…if I could have maintenance records dropped in my hand & a solid PPI….this car is not a bad deal

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