2000 BMW 323Ci

Sometimes it’s not the performance of a car that catches my eye; case in point, today’s bottom-of-the-E46 range for the U.S. market 323Ci. The budget entry, these often seemed to be snapped up by junior executive types that wanted to say they owned a brand new BMW, but couldn’t actually afford a brand new BMW. Yet that’s not the car’s fault, and it’s a lovely design. For a budget coupe with a fair amount of practicality and a special feel, the 323Ci works just fine. This particular car is presented in rarely seen Light Yellow Metallic and is interestingly optioned with Sport Package and little else:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2000 BMW 323Ci on eBay

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1998 BMW 323Ci

Vehicle nomenclature got a bit weird in the 1990s. It used to be that a lot of cars could have their engine size deciphered from their name, for example, a 560SL came equipped with a 5.6 liter V8 and a BMW 535i had a 3.5 liter inline six. BMW dropped the 1.8 liter four cylinder engine from its duty in base model 3 series sedans, coupes and convertibles in 1998. In its place, they supplanted a 2.5 liter inline six. But was it called a 325i? No. This new entry level model was known as the 323i, as a possible way of spacing the numbers out from the top dog 328i.

The E36 series have pretty much depreciated their way down to the realm of affordable daily drivers, so to come across a clean one that isn’t an M car is rare. This 323i Convertible for sale in New Jersey is nice in that it is a 5-speed manual. A lot of these open roofed 3 series convertibles were of the two pedal variety. Also, with just a hair over 20,000 miles on the clock, this one is pretty much showroom fresh.

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Year: 1998
Model: 323Ci
Engine: 2.5 liter inline-6
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 20,420 miles
Price: $12,500 Buy It Now

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1998 BMW 323Ci on eBay

I’m selling my summer toy – extremely fun, low-mileage E36 convertible. Why? Well, I bought it from my colleague when his son turned 17 and got his driver license. Now I’m in the same boat. The car has to go 🙁 With manual transmission, lightweight body (3,296 lbs.) and silky-smooth inline 6, the car is as much fun as a Miata, but way more practical and luxurious. It also feels refreshingly solid – none of that plasticky feel of recent BMWs with their thin doors, electrical steering and throttle by wire, riding on hard-as-brick run-flats.

The car’s condition is pristine (at 20K miles it has to be). This BMW has always been a garage queen, being driven only 3-4 months a year and spending the rest of year under protective cover (the cover is included, you can see it on one of the pictures). I doubt this car has seen any rain at all – at least in my hands it didn’t – engine and underbody are all shining.

I have all the original books and the window sticker ($38,670 in 1998, $55,250 in today’s money). I’ve installed a Pioneer MP3/USB player, the original tape player will be included. There is also a CD-changer in the trunk. The car has a 100 Club of Connecticut shield attached (hundredclubofct.org) – it is my advice to keep it where it is.

After I bought the car in 2010, I’ve also bought:
Wind deflector (designed by Paul Klee)
New set of tires (driven about 6,000 miles on them)
New battery (still on warranty)
Dinan front tower brace (sharper turn-ins)
New engine and cabin air filters.
Oil has been changed every 12 months (every 2K miles), changed intake and return hoses for power steering. Local BMW dealer found everything else in perfect shape.
Exhaustive list of “issues” – making sure I list every imperfection, however minor:
remote key doesn’t work (dead key fob battery/code erased when replaced car’s battery?) – never bothered to check – top is mostly open anyway and the car is driven in a safe neighborhood
scratch/ding on plastic rear bumper (left rear corner – can see on pictures). About 1.5×1 inch.
leather on seats looks/feels brand new, save for small hairline scratch on driver seat – depicted below
THAT IS ALL!!! HAPPY BIDDING! …. OR you can buy it for $12,500 right away (and get practically new car for almost 80% off its cost when new)
The car is also selling locally, so I reserve a right to cancel the auction if any of my neighbors knock on my door holding a $12.5K check.

I’m also willing to ship worldwide (a bit of a hassle, but that’s okay). Buyer pays shipping charges, of course. I’m still riding my BMW while I can, will drive to upstate NY this weekend, so expect a few hundred more miles on the odometer. I’ll try my best answering any questions you might have. Thank you for checking my auction.

I’m not really a convertible person. I’ve never owned one and they are not really on my radar, but every now and then during the warm months I find myself longing for a little bit of open air motoring. I’m not sure if it’s enough of a desire to want to live with a convertible for the rest of the year, but one of these days I’ll probably get around to procuring one just to check it off the bucket list. These late model E36 convertibles aren’t lighting the charts on fire when it comes to values. A good one like this with low mileage will run you somewhere between $9,000 and $12,000. The fact that most people want an automatic and this one is a manual might hold it back a bit, but for me, it would be a bonus.

-Paul

1000 horsepower 2000 BMW 323ci M3 clone, kind of

You probably read that title and wondered how someone juiced a 2 liter M52 engine to 1000 horsepower. In reality this 323ci isn’t packing some massively nitroused or turboed inline six BMW engine, but instead a full race 410 cubic inch Chevy small block with a supercharger.

There has to be a bit of crazy sparkle in the eye of the gent who thought this conversion up, not to mention more than a couch full of spare change. This car has been around the net for a number of years, gathering its share of cheers and jeers.

The 2000 323ci has a salvage title so the car itself was probably sitting around awaiting a less interesting fate or was purchased for a song. Somehow, perhaps after an evening of drinking in the garage, someone got the idea of dropping an engine worth 10 times the value of the car up front, the seller says there is $40,000 invested in the engine. The seller lists the engine has having dyno sheets showing 850 honest horsepower before the addition of the supercharger, which is being claimed to push the beast to close to 1000 horse power. The engine a bored over 350 was pulled from a World of Outlaws sprint car and is mated to a GM 700R transmission. I’d probably want to see updated dyno sheets and I’d think twice about wagering on there really being Veyron horsepower at the rear wheels.

The car itself has had a BMW M3 GTR widebody kit added along with some M badges. A few extra holes in the body work have been added, presumably to help with heat. The trunk is filled with a fuel cell.

Inside the car looks stock other than the new autobox shifter and a redone digital dash.

The seller gives mileage as 5,000, who knows what exactly that refers to. Probably would be worth knowing how much track time the engine saw before the transplant.  I suspect it has seen some hard miles since the conversion. The ask price is $30,000. Some other crazy might buy it for that much. I’d be a bit scared of the longevity of something like this, but the hard work has been done so even if something breaks it would be easier to replace the second time. This would be pretty fun to surprise some people out on the street, but the novelty may wear off pretty quickly as this is probably two complete handfulls to keep in straight line. I’ve posted a few videos below showing the car as it appeared back in 2007, thankfully it has lost the ridiculous wing since these were made.

1000 horsepower 2000 BMW 323ci on eBay

 

~Evan