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Heathen Speed Redux

A while back, I wrote up an E30 M3 that gave me weird feelings – I couldn’t tell if it was awesome or terrible. Flat black with an S52 turbo swap and a rebuilt title, it was otherwise pretty straight and seemed to be free from the normal constraints of E30 M3 respect. Well, it’s back on the market, albeit this time with a new paint job and some more eurotuner-appropriate polished-lip, painted-center BBS RCs. Those are pretty much the only changes, other than some further confusion regarding the state of the title. It now stands more as an M3 pushed closer to 11 as opposed to a true oddity, but the core remains the same: it will be a less-expensive, blisteringly fast E30 M3.

1988 BMW M3 with S52 Turbo for sale on eBay

A straightforward description:

1988 BMW E30 M3
Diamondschwartz Black.
158K Miles
M52b25 Engine- 140MLS Headgasket with ARP Studs, New gaskets, seals.
e36 M3 cams, Excellent Compression
HID Headlights
255 Walbro Fuel Pump
GT35R ball bearing turbo
V-band External 3″ downpipe 42lb injectors
Super sequential blow-off valve HKS
OBX Wastegate Kit 44mm w/ V-band External WG
Treehouse Wiring Harness Adapter
Custom dyno chip
Power Steering
With 5 speed transmission
UUC Stage2 lightweight flywheel with less then 10,000k since install
RACING DYNAMICS Thick Sway Bars front and Rear
LSD Rear- 2.93
D2 RACING RS Coilovers: 36 levels of adjustable damping plus Height
Stainless Steel brake lines
Upgraded Rotors and Ceramic Brake Pads
RACING DYNAMICS Steering wheel
SPARCO Sport Seats
Alpine CD Player
BBS 17” Style 5 RC rims- Freshly Polished with Dunloop tires at about 50% tread life left.
Gauge cluster is 100% working
New windshield. Tinted Windows front and rear
Custom Vented Hood
Fresh Body work: Re-sanded, primered, block sanded and then painted, cleared all with TOP notch PPG Paint. Then Wet Sanded and Buffed out.

The Bad: Has a Salvage/Branded title. Bought it with no engine no interior. Didn’t care as this was a project car for me. Was not wrecked the only reason it’s salvage is because the tow yard could not provide a smog so to save them self’s they wrote the car off.

Biggest issues are fleshing out what the hell actually happened with the title and preparing to deal with scornful looks from the S14 faithful. I think the seller made a good choice getting the car painted in that deep Diamondschwartz, and while I might do without the vented hood and Evo II front lip, they certainly signal that this M3 is packing a lot more heat than the S14 could muster. The lack of S14 and provenance are its downfall as well, and the price will reflect that. Bidding is warm, with 14 bids pushing it close to $8k with 5 days left and the reserve still on. With the pros and cons factored in, I’d say this car is worth less than $15k, but not by much.



  1. Wes
    Wes November 18, 2011

    Yeah, I just don’t see the point of an E30 M3 without the S14 engine. The previous owner may as well have done all those mods on a run of the mill 325i.

  2. Nate
    Nate November 18, 2011

    My one excuse for it is the box fenders, but I’m with you, especially after seeing cars like the Hartge H26 we posted. Throw on a classy kit like that and drop an S52 in it, then you have a cooler and more respectable car than this.

  3. Wes
    Wes November 18, 2011

    The Hartge H26 is the heat. I was looking at it yesterday on eBay before it was posted here.

  4. Larry
    Larry November 18, 2011

    At $12K with 4 days left, this isn’t something I’d want to take a chance on. The value of this car comes down to how well the work was done. Resale-wise, questionable title/vehicle history + VERY non-standard motor = limited buyer pool.

  5. Igor
    Igor February 6, 2012

    Our shop did all of the work on this car.
    I can say the salvage title was due to State of CA regulations that no car can sell with out a smog. The car was missing the S14 engine and this made it un smogable. The way to sell the car was to junk it making it a salvage title car. The car has all of it’s vin tags on the panels and has not been wrecked. The engine replaced is very common in the e30 community. Making this even more attractive.
    -thx IP

  6. Bubbah
    Bubbah February 7, 2012

    Car is a piece of shit and is not worth it. M3 is an m3 s14 a must.

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