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View Full Version : Help me decide which E36 to buy!!


djcontra
06-16-2002, 09:03 PM
I've put my car up for sale starting monday, i want to buy a standard E36 this time around.

I've been pondering on a few models and can't decide which route to take. I want to limit myself to a maximum of $17,000 maybe 18 but it's pushing it a little..i wanna save some money for rims.

1. 1992 to 1994 5spd 325is (approx cost $10,000 ~ $18,000)

2. 1992 to 1994 5spd 318is w/ m3 engine conversion
(approx cost $6000 ~ $10,000 for car without conversion)

3. 1992 or 1993 5spd 325is w/ supercharger
(only considered if i can pickup the car for under $12,000)


which would be the best route to go?
i kinda like the idea of putting an m3 engine into a 318 since i can pick up a few near my house for $6000 or $7000.
There is a nice light blue one, a dark green one, and a black one near my house around those prices. The black one is $8000 though.

All i know for sure is i want a 2door, 5spd, and i wanna get at least less than 160,000km's on the car. (mine is above 200,000 now and it runs perfect, but i wouldn't mind less for resale purposes)

Harry
06-16-2002, 10:01 PM
I would go with the m3 conversion. you can save some money on insurance with the 318 v. the 325. i've seen some 95 318's online for less than $10k, so a 92 or below would be a lot cheaper. I would persoanlly buy the blue one, but I like blue. I wouldnt buy the green because I don't think they look as nice modified.

Why don't you put the m3 engine into your 325? is there somehting that you don't like abotu it, like 4 doors or something? I think that would be the cheapest route since you already have the car.

oktay
06-16-2002, 10:10 PM
OK where do you guys see these 94-95 318is for 7-10K?

djcontra
06-16-2002, 10:15 PM
Harry: Yeah i dont like the green that much either, but i'll take any colour, it doesn't matter to me, i just dont like red e36's that much.

i dont want to do the conversion on my car because of the high mileage. I would prefer to mod a car with less mileage on the body.
Plus it would cost me less to convert a 318is than to put an m3 engine in my car.

And i want to get a 2door now =)

oktay: auto trader the newspaper...online doesn't have all the cars listed in the papers.
and along kingston rd scarborough...the hotspot for cheap used cars.

Harry
06-16-2002, 10:19 PM
Curious.. why would it be cheaper to do the 318 than a 325? is it due to the tranny being auto in the 325 or something?

Is there any rust or anything on the body of your 325?

Also.. can't you sue the internals from the 325 to convert a 3.2 to OBDI, or am I just loaded again?

djcontra
06-16-2002, 10:24 PM
My car cost me about $15,000 after taxes
if i put up $5000 for the m3 conversion and another $1000 for a manual tranny and plumping, that brings the cost of my car over $21,000.

If i buy a 318is for let's say a realistic price of $8500 and add the conversion, it's only about $13,500 or $14,000 in the end

that's about the only reason why
it's the same with my fieros. Why bother swaping a V6 fiero to a V8 if the V6 fiero costs approx $2000 to buy, when you can buy the 4banger fiero for $600 =)
They're the same car, just different engines.

'88 325e
06-16-2002, 10:24 PM
There are a couple of nice E36 328IS in www.trader.ca. I have been in a couple of 328's and i'm impressed on the low torque and high horsepower they put out.

Good luck,
Dave
*th-up*

Harry
06-16-2002, 10:35 PM
What the resale that you can get for your car you think?

If you can find a 318is with a great body on it then I would definetly do that.

When did you buy your car? Would you sell the mods youre done, or just try top put them on the new car?

djcontra
06-16-2002, 10:44 PM
I'm not sure what i'll get for my car, but i always advertise higher than what i know the car is worth because i know the buyer will talk me down...so i let them talk me down to MY price *th-up*

Depending on what i get, i might keep the performance chip, and my subwoofers. I'm letting the coilovers go with the car because it'd be too expensive to convert the thing back to stock...but if the buyer wants me to certify the car for some extra money i'll switch it at their request because i know my car doesn't need much to get cert'd.

The rims will be an option, i'll probably sell them seperately for $1500. or add that value onto the final sale price if they want them (who wouldn't ??) =)

i HOPE to get somewhere along the lines of $14,500 or less without rims.
i dont know if that's asking too much or not, but i know if i wait for the right person i can get what i'm asking which is what i'm prepared to do.

SickFinga
06-17-2002, 12:32 AM
If you want an m3 swap get a 318ti.

KIRASIR
06-17-2002, 09:30 AM
WHA??

Why on Earth would he have to change the tranny and the differential?!??! The 318 tranny is a direct bolt-on to all of the L6 engines.

SL



Originally posted by ROB89M3
Don't get a 318 because if later you wanna do an engine conversion to a "six" you're gonna have to sawp the tranny/differential + exhaust + computer as well.It will be more expensive to do the conversion after. Get a 6 cylinder!!!

KIRASIR
06-17-2002, 09:34 AM
Actually Vlad the Downing Atl. supercharger is probably a better way to go since it can always be sold for 70-80% of its original sticker price, while the money for the swap can never be recovered.

I also went for a ride yesterday with James in his supercharged 318ti. Damn what a rush! That thing pulls like crazy in every gear.

SL

Originally posted by SickFinga
If you want an m3 swap get a 318ti.

GR8 Ride
06-17-2002, 09:50 AM
First of all, I'd be surprised if you could get a decent quality 3.2L motor for $5000 CDN. Try $5000 US, if you're lucky.

Plus shipping, and another $2500 CDN to install the unit.

I'd seriously budget $10,000 CDN towards getting the 3.2L motor into your car.

I'll have to check when I get home, but I'm pretty sure the tranny for the M44 and M50 motors is identical (318 and 325), and the M52 / B30/B32 motors is the same across those lines (328 and M3...).

Ratios are identical either way, but a 318 is going to have a 3.91 or 4.10 rear end, which is WAY too short for a 3.2L motor. 1st gear would be essentially useless to you.

A better choice is the 325, as these will come with the 3.15 rear diff, which will work well with the 3.2L motor (which came with either a 3.15, 3.23 or 3.64 rear diff). The 3.64 was Euro only, and has a completely different housing from the others. It's not a bolt in unit.

A good, low mileage 325 is going to run mid to high teens (94 and earlier), and another $10,000 for the engine swap. You'd also want to look at upgrading brakes and possibly suspension in the near future as well.

The other difficulty is this; you can either convert the 3.2L motor to OBD-I (which makes emissions testing difficult), or convert the car to OBD-II, which your engine *may* or *may not* include the complete wiring harness and computer. For $5,000 CDN, I'd doubt you'd get all of it.

Pat

djcontra
06-17-2002, 10:02 AM
i think i might have to call up motronix or somebody and ask them what's involved. If it's feasable to do the 318is to m3 engine conversion for less than $6000 then i'm gonna do that most likely.
I did see a nice black e36 325is in the autotrader for $7000 it's a 1994 too. it was a theft recovery and needs new corner lights. I think i might go check it out.

Lil'Smoothie
06-17-2002, 10:15 AM
If your going with the 318 your gonna have to redo allyour suspension will you not? Considering the M3 engine ways alot more thanthe 4 cylinder, also wouldn't you have to replace the computer?

djcontra
06-17-2002, 11:56 AM
well when you buy the engine it comes with the computer
i wouldn't buy one without it.

the suspension should handle it, but i'm going to go with an H&R/Koni Adjustable suspension anyway on the next e36 i buy.
I want to adjust the firmness as my daily comute to work is hell on my car, i want to set it softer for things like that.

i'm gonna ask the experts for some advice on what to do
i may just get another 325, i dont know yet
first i need to sell my car =)

KIRASIR
06-17-2002, 01:30 PM
The difference in weight between m42/m44 and m50/m52 is about 30-35kg. That's ALL!

Remember that if you buy a car for $10k + $6-10 for the engine swap, later on you won't be able to sell the car for more than $11-13k.

So either buy an 328/M3 or buy a 318 and supercharge it.

SL


Originally posted by djcontra
well when you buy the engine it comes with the computer
i wouldn't buy one without it.

the suspension should handle it, but i'm going to go with an H&R/Koni Adjustable suspension anyway on the next e36 i buy.
I want to adjust the firmness as my daily comute to work is hell on my car, i want to set it softer for things like that.

i'm gonna ask the experts for some advice on what to do
i may just get another 325, i dont know yet
first i need to sell my car =)

SickFinga
06-17-2002, 03:31 PM
yes if you are worried about reselling value get 328is or m3.
Ofcause you will never get your money back, but you will have almost one of a kind car. and remember when you SC you 318 that's about it and you still can SC or even turbo m3 engine

djcontra
06-17-2002, 03:44 PM
Naw i'm not worried about resale value, i think the e36 is the best car i've ever owned and i would be more than happy keeping it around for quite some time, just like how people hold on to their e30's.

thanks guys for the suggestions and points to look for and ask about. We'll just have to wait and see what i eventually get.
I am also eyeing some convertable e36's as well.

GR8 Ride
06-17-2002, 04:04 PM
So, why not keep your existing car, and swap out the auto tranny for a 5-spd manual?

This is an upgrade which would cost about $1500 or so, as the tranny is pretty cheap, and the face plate is really easy to swap out.

Then, you could easily swap out the 2.5L OBD-I motor for a 3.0L OBD-I motor, or even the 3.2L OBD-II motor at some point in time.

Pretty easy deal....rather than unloading your car, and buying a completely new one.


Pat

'88 325e
06-17-2002, 05:27 PM
Originally posted by Bad-Karma
So, why not keep your existing car, and swap out the auto tranny for a 5-spd manual?

This is an upgrade which would cost about $1500 or so, as the tranny is pretty cheap, and the face plate is really easy to swap out.

I also think that this is the best route too! Is there something wrong with your car? Has it been hit before? If your car is solid just keep it repaint it and do the conversion! If you buy another used car you "don't" know what you are getting. Thats why I didn't sell my E30. I could have gone the E36 M3 way but my car is solid and it is also lighter than the E36. :)

djcontra
06-18-2002, 10:54 AM
well if you guys know where i can get my car converted for $1500 sign me up!! *th-up*

Does that include the tranny as well?

i honestly dont want to sell my car but from what it seemed like on other boards and so on that it wouldn't be worth it to convert my car.

JJ.
06-18-2002, 12:27 PM
yeah I'd be down for a swap for 1500 too! Does anyone know the exact cost to install the M3 engine? Because I may be able to get 3.0 one for cheap. How much could I resale my 320is engine for with 130,000kms?

GR8 Ride
06-18-2002, 12:31 PM
A 5-spd manual tranny for the E36 runs about $1000; you can buy the ZF unit for that price if you want, a Getrag unit is probably even a little cheaper.

All you need then is to find a wrecker E36 325, grab the clutch pedal out of it, and the assembly for the shift knob. All told, these parts shouldn't run much more than $100 or so, used (no point in buying them new; plenty of wreckers around with these cars).

You'd then spend about a day's labour at a good shop to have the swap done. Bavarian Motors has done this for a few customers, and will source the tranny, and all required parts for you if you wish.

(905) 479-1769. Ask for Steve.


Pat

danbean123
06-24-2002, 06:47 PM
Personnaly, I would buy a 325is 5 spd and I would order a stage 1 turbo kit from AA and smoke M3's.

SickFinga
06-24-2002, 10:03 PM
Originally posted by danbean123
Personnaly, I would buy a 325is 5 spd and I would order a stage 1 turbo kit from AA and smoke M3's.

You would be able to smoke not just a slow ass m3