OT... Educate me on the E30 M3

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by mnewell, Feb 2, 2004.

  1. mnewell

    mnewell Lucy.

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    So I've been thinking about it and I think I'm gonna sell my car (in the near future) and buy an E30 M3. I know a little about these cars but wanted to hear what you all have to say about them...

    -average costs?
    -what goes wrong with them?
    -easy to work on?
    -parts costs?
    -usual mods to look for?

    I've always liked these cars and have had them on my list of cars to own for quite awhile now. Any information would be helpful.

    Thanks! :bigthumb:

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Juggernaut

    Juggernaut Guest



    -average costs? For a good E30- think about 3-5k depending on miles

    -what goes wrong with them? Nothing really. My injectors had to be changed at 300k, but that's it. Just change the oil regularly, oh and the headgasket needs to be changed around 200k.

    -easy to work on? Extremely. I call it the Ford Mustang of BMW. You can tear it apart with your hands and put it back together in a single afternoon.

    -parts costs? Well because its an older car, they are not as pricey as new BMW parts. Remember, these arent all driven by electronics. They are simple systems, not complex beasts like a current Bimmer

    -usual mods to look for? Conforti chip on my 84 Eta brought me 30HP!!!! And that's just with a freaking chip!

    Usual BMW mods go: Intake, exhaust, injectors, chip, underdrive pullies.

    But if you want to go extreme, drop in a S50 M3 engine, supercharge it... and holy shit NOTHING will touch you :cool:
     
  3. TS skilzz

    TS skilzz New Member

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    post more pics...what year was that 94?
     
  4. mnewell

    mnewell Lucy.

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    Hmmm... Based on the prices you listed, it sounds like you are talking about the regular E30 (318/325/es/is). I'm looking for info about the M3...

    Although some of that info can probably relate to the M3. Especially the comment about it not being a complex beast like the current BMWs. I really think that the BMWs of that era are some of the best built cars around. None of that extra crap that can go wrong.

    Thanks for the info!
     
  5. LEGbEND

    LEGbEND .

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    mmmm.... I love them.

    theyre hard to find, and usually overpriced when you do. i would love to make one into a project car.
     
  6. LEGbEND

    LEGbEND .

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    like 88.
     
  7. 00soul

    00soul halfsharkalligatorhalfman

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    when dealing with a e30 m3, remeber the 15k rule. if you buy the car for 3k, look to spend about 12 k to fix it up to good condidtion. if you guy the car for 14 k, look to spend 1k to get it in good/better condidtion.

    also parts cost about 3 times more than your regular e30.


    of course there are exceptions to the rules.
     
  8. Juggernaut

    Juggernaut Guest

    My mistake, I thought u were referring to E30's in general, not the M3.


    Alright, well the M3 is basically the E30 with just the S14 M3 engine, and some stiffer suspension.

    Price wise, expect to pay 10-15k for a good car. The only problems they have is at 100k you have to change the timing chain, that's really it.

    Overall, VERY easy car to drive, but not very fast. They win because they are nimble, not because of speed. So as long as you know that you're not going to win stoplight to stoplight racing, but rather rape people left and right on the autocross course, you're good to go! :bigthumb: :cool:
     
  9. LEGbEND

    LEGbEND .

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    EvoIII = WIN!
     
  10. Buzz Killington

    Buzz Killington nunc fortunatus sum

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    No.

    The guides are the problems, not the chains, on an S14, as with an S38.

    No.

    They are nimble and handle well enough to get you into serious trouble. Tons of them are now sitting in junkyards for that reason.

    It's like a powerful, small caliber rifle. It might look small, but it can still kill you.

    Buy one with records. Do not buy one owned by a young chump. Buy one as close to stock as you can. Get a pre-purchase inspection from an independent garage (not the one who did the work on the car).
     
  11. 00soul

    00soul halfsharkalligatorhalfman

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    ^^^:werd: i belive the only thing the e30 and the e30 m3 share is the hood
     
  12. mnewell

    mnewell Lucy.

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    More pics...

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I heart these cars.
     
  13. bokhan

    bokhan i love you

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  14. mnewell

    mnewell Lucy.

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    That's exactly what I don't want to do. I've had too many cars in the past where I paid cheap for it in the beginning and ended up getting ass-raped on the little things.

    Nope. I'll gladly pay the extra money to insure that the car is in tip-top shape.
     
  15. Juggernaut

    Juggernaut Guest




    Pick up any Bmwworld magazine at your local barnes and nobles, flip to the back of the book, and they rate the E30 M3 with 5 stars and state clearly the only problem is the chain.
    I'm not saying they dont have a problem with their valve guides, but the main problem is the chain going out @ 100k. Either way, the S50 engine drop in is a logical choice instead of dropping a rebuilt S14 IMO.

    Secondly yes in terms of HP / Tq, the S14 M3 is SLOW. I am talking about straightline drag style racing that many stupid kids buy them and ruin BMW cultural Icon's. We're talking 190HP / 170 Tq. That's slow stoplight to stoplight, YET on the track is PLENTY for what the car is.

    (taken from: http://www.bmwworld.com/models/m3_e30.htm)


    I completely agree with the records thing. I was reading a story about a guy in England who bought an E30 M3 only to realize it was 2 cars welded together to make one whole one ( chop shop job). Be very careful!!!!
     
  16. mnewell

    mnewell Lucy.

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    I'm glad you came into this thread...

    A good percentage of these cars have seen track time. A good percentage have been modified. It seems to be the nature of the car.

    My feelings on the subject are that I'd probably want/do the usual mods. I want the car as a daily driver with the occasional track day. Ideally, these cars are usually owned by BMW zealots who take care of them to the nth degree. Would mods really be a problem considering past ownership?

    Your thoughts on this subject?
     
  17. NYM3

    NYM3 Is this teal life or is it....fanta-sea?

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    You mean price...you're looking at a 10k to 15k range...every car will need something...and there is always something to fix on them...ALWAYS...parts are expensive but not ridiculous...the problem is if you cant do the work yourself...you need a good mechanic who knows this specific cars and its engine...veyr hard to find...and even harder to find for a reasonable price.


    What goes wrong with them? Nothing really...just usual wear items as on all 15 year old cars...bushings, timing chain tensioner(NOT THE CHAIN), control arms....nothign major should be wrong with it...the engine should go to 200k...before a rebuild is needed...stock rebuild=5k tho...a 2.5(evoIII style) from 8k to 25k....

    The best mod is to ditch the AFM...via an Alpha-N setup or an MAF setup...this really opens up the engine giving much more torque and midrange...even a big boost top end also....other than that...just usual mods...suspension...cams...wheels...

    I have 2 of them in my garage so i know a little about them :bigthumb:
     
  18. NYM3

    NYM3 Is this teal life or is it....fanta-sea?

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    Bimmerworld magazine....written in the UK correct....this thing about the chain going at 100k has proven to be a huge rumor mainly started in the UK by independent shops looking to make money....ask anyone about it and NO ONE HAS EVER REALLY HEARD OF A CHAIN BREAKING...if the itming system is maintained...new tensioner(MOST IMPORTANT) and guides are checked for major wear...its not an issue at all...

    I can gaurantee you this as I have over 7 years of e30 m3 experience...

    All you need to do is install a US e36 3.0L timing chain tensioner and you will be good to go for easy 200k miles...

    Its a double row chain...those things almost never break
     
  19. Buzz Killington

    Buzz Killington nunc fortunatus sum

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    NYM3 is probably still typing a response :o

    You have to commit 100% to the car. If it breaks, fix it NOW. If it needs maintenance, do it NOW.

    I just dropped $830 to get a new radiator and pressure test for my M6. And that was with $300 off the radiator because I know the shop owner :hs:

    Be prepared and be willing to blow money on the car.
     
  20. mnewell

    mnewell Lucy.

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  21. NYM3

    NYM3 Is this teal life or is it....fanta-sea?

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    Past ownership is a big deal...but if the car is right....and you get it checked out right...then its not as big a deal...most cars you come across wont have records...some will...but more than likely not...


    If you are really serious PM me about it...i can give you some good sites to go to...
     
  22. NYM3

    NYM3 Is this teal life or is it....fanta-sea?

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    :rofl:

    This man speaketh the truth
     
  23. Buzz Killington

    Buzz Killington nunc fortunatus sum

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    Seems to me to be a split. Maybe half the cars I see for sale have some track time or driving school time. The other half are owned by people who just love the car for what it is and don't track them.

    Mods that I would consider as a plus:

    Bilsteins (should be at this age, anyway) and H&Rs
    SS exhaust of reputable build (NYM3 will say Triflo = poop, but there are other options ;) )
    cam gear
    short shifter

    Anything else and I would be leery unless the owner seems 100% and the records are perfect. YOU should be the one to modify or leave the car stock. Sadly, there ain't many of these left to play with :sad2:
     
  24. Buzz Killington

    Buzz Killington nunc fortunatus sum

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    PS I would be in one right now except that this M6 fell into my lap.
     
  25. NYM3

    NYM3 Is this teal life or is it....fanta-sea?

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    I do not suggest this at all...as it totally changes teh engine's characteristics...

    You lose hp to gain torque....not worth it IMHO....it shifts the whole powerband down...the S14 was made for high end power...thats where the fun is...
     

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