1996 BMW 318ti Sport Package

Before the introduction of the MINI Cooper and the 1 series, BMW gave the small car segment a shot back in the mid 1990s with the introduction of the hatchback version of the E36, otherwise known as the ti. Clean, low mileage examples are rare these days, but here’s a clean, original example with the desirable sport package for sale on eBay:

The seller states:

Super clean real nice. Comes complete with all Book’s,Manuals,service records and two sets of remote key’s. This BMW is in excellent condition inside and out! Serviced and 100% road ready. Timing chain. All tuned up. Motor and transmission run 100%. Rotors and pads are new, tires, exhaust, hoses, belts, fluids all good. Front end and rear all good. air condition blows ice cold. There are no engine indicator lights on. I would drive this BMW anywhere! This vehicle is immaculate! always pampered and detailed! Never abused! The engine runs 100% with no problems detected. The under carriage is dry with no visible leaks. The 5-speed manual transmission shifts smoothly through all gears and performs as it should. The suspension is good and the vehicle is responsive to all driving conditions. This vehicle provides precise handling, effortless performance, and an excellent and comfortable ride. The cockpit is well designed with all controls at your finger tips. The acceleration is spirited and fuel economy respectable up to 29 mpg. The previous owner took pride in maintaining the absolute beautiful condition of this affordable BMW 318Ti Sport package hatchback coupe. The paint is glossy with No major blemishes. see pictures! The interior is in excellent condition. The Leather seats are like new and show little wear. The carpets are clean and fresh. Non smoke . No odors. No pets. Two sets of floor mats for winter and summer. The leather steering wheel, Door panels and Dash are in great shape. The carpets are clean and fresh. Do Not let the highway miles fool you this unit runs and looks great! Please do not hesitate to bid. This vehicle runs and looks great!

With 170k miles, anything over $5,000 would be a bit much for this car. $3,500 to $4,000 is probably a solid bet for what would be a good, most likely hassle free and efficient commuter vehicle that would stand out from the herd.

-Paul

Supercharged 1997 BMW 318ti for sale

I don’t think I’m alone in saying that I’ve never given the BMW E36/5 318ti a second glance, let alone any respect.  Kind of the predecessor to the 1-series, it was BMW’s unique (eschewing more common derisive descriptors) rear-wheel drive compact, the only of its genre in North America.  MSRP’d below $20k, it was definitely an economy-BMW, and this association along with it’s slightly awkward profile kept it from being taken very seriously and it never sold well.

Today, however, I found one on Craigslist that has me questioning my dismissal of the baby Bimmer.

Supercharged 1997 BMW 318ti for sale on Craigslist

Not only does this beautiful white 1997 version have the sport package, it’s been upgraded with a very clean Eaton supercharger installation.  That has to make some positive steps towards discarding the frumpy reputation, as well as the M3-style front fascia and the very, very well-chosen 17-inch BBS RKs.  The M-accented cloth seats are decidedly 90s, but that’s ok and the rest of the interior is clean and sporty.  The proportions will always be funky on this car, but the aforementioned upgrades along with a trunklid spoiler and M3 mirrors really suit it and make you think how tossable that short wheelbase must be.  For sale just under $9k, 165k miles seems like a bit, especially with a boosted engine.  That said, it looks extremely well cared-for, and is probably a ton of fun for under ten grand.

For the first time, I’m finding myself giving a 318ti a long, desirous look.

-NR