Even with automatics, I love perfect examples of old bimmers, and this 20k-mile 320i is no exception. It has lived most of its life in Japan but is thankfully still LHD. The island life has kept its use regular but minimal, resulting in the extremely low amount of miles. It’s a beautiful example of the E30 sedan and would make a great daily driver with a pay-no-mind transmission deciding how to best use the most diminutive M20, a teacup 2.0-liter inline-6. The seller is hoping for strong E30 money even though it’s a basic model, but that’s to be expected when the car has traveled roughly one American’s yearly miles over a quarter century.
Thanks to a Road & Track tuner feature, AC Schnitzer (along with Ruf, TechArt and HPA) was one of the first tuners to really catch my imagination. Big chunky 5-spokes and wings fore, aft, and midship were plenty to turn middle-school me into a daydreaming Autobahn master. In this day and age and much like the cars they tune or the pop stars we are force-fed, aftermarket design has become a caricature of hyper-stylized aggression. There was a time, however, when bodykits and wheels were subtly aggressive extensions of classic designs. This 325i sedan is exactly that, having received a bodykit, exhaust, wheels, and suspension that make it look more like an appetizing foreign model rather than a crazy tuner cartoon. Originally a Euro model that was imported to Japan and then Florida, it’s covered 43k miles on the road and nearly half that amount in shipping. The automatic is a bummer, but with so few miles and such beautifully restrained modifications it can be forgiven. The exhaust and suspension will help make the drive more exciting (as long as it doesn’t have the sad sound of good exhaust droning across an auto trans’ overly-smooth revs), and the bodykit and wheels will put a smile on any BMW fan’s face. Eventually a manual swap and some engine mods would help it keep up with its appearance, but for now it’s a very cool E30 that won’t break the bank.
Click for details: 1989 BMW 325i AC Schnitzer on eBay
Welcome back to Friday Fail, our opportunity to provide your Friday with a little more levity as you obsessively refresh your blog roll and count the minutes until the weekend is here. My favorite target for FF is misleading or misinformed sellers, but today we’ll just focus on what looks to be a pretty serious basket case of an E31.
This Friday Fail is quite a head turner due to its repaint in the E46 fan-boy favorite Laguna Seca Blue, a color whose only claim to fame is being obnoxiously bright and having the aforementioned ALL CAPS INTERNET DEVOTEES. Bright colors certainly have their place, but I’ll take Estoril over LSB ten times out of ten. A bright-ass exterior and reasonably low 117k miles appear to be the only high points here. Despite reportedly being “babied and well taken care of,” this 840Ci looks pretty piggy once you get past the lipstick. The interior is beat save the brand new suede headliner(!?), yet the seller gives it 8/10. It should automatically lose an extra 3 points due to that ugly sliding gear selector. The engine bay looks like someone scrubbed it with dirt and shot it with a bb gun. Apparently it has new front suspension and a RACING RADIATOR FAN because Laguna Seca is a race track.
I like the E31 and I don’t actually hate Laguna Seca Blue, but I can’t think of any situation in which I would buy this LSB E31.
Click for details: 1995 BMW 840Ci on eBay
Here’s a doozy, folks – a 1991 325i that’s covered just 20k miles. The car didn’t cover much ground in its first decade, after which it went unregistered and unused for the better part of 15 years. It was then picked up by a Pittsburgh auto dealer who is now liquidating his stock for retirement. He’s letting it loose with no reserve, as well as the other car on his eBay profile right now – a Ferrari yellow convertible Cadillac Allante. We talk about rare cars here, but that Allante – whew!
For being such a fun little bronze coupe, this thing sure hasn’t found much love. It is in pretty much brand-new shape though, especially after a repaint to correct years of sitting – perhaps it was the automatic transmission? Whatever the reason, it’s time for it to find a home that appreciates what a lovely representation this is of the E30 breed. It should be on the road, daily driven by someone who likes driving but needs shifting taken care of.
Click for details: 1991 BMW 325i on eBay
Many people love the E36 “M3/4/5,” the 5-speed manual, 4-door sedan sleeper. It was the first M-car I fell in love with (and drove… funny how that works). This M3/2/5A is the opposite, the only less desirable version being the convertible. An automatic sedan is unfortunate but perhaps defensible as a family car. This coupe, looking hot in Hellrot and on the perfect Style 22s, deserves to be the Ultimate Driving Machine. Without the lovely 5-speed manual to play the S50 as you please, it’s just not. Dang pretty though.