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Old 09-18-2017, 12:49 AM   #1
Syn
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Join Date: Mar 2011
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Arrow Looking to buy my first E30 - need advice.



I am looking to purchase 1991 320i convertible, it was imported from Japan years ago (no rust)

Car sits at 90km and looks to be in good shape. Vogtland lowering springs and KYB shcks, aftermarket wheels. I'll be taking it to the shop more than likely.

Since its from Japan with very poor history from current owner, anything I should be worried about or look for?


Thanks

Last edited by Syn; 09-18-2017 at 01:03 AM.
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Old 09-18-2017, 07:17 PM   #2
Sea Aych
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I'd take a look at all that suspension stuff since it's not stock and see if it was frankensteined on install or if any corners were cut - you don't want to inherit a "replace all the rubber" car where everything's banged up and clunky.

Take it for a drive on the highway and check for driveline vibrations or braking vibrations, ask about the timing belt history if the current owner knows it, and check for rust anyways and always (especially on the jack pads/points and under where the battery would be in the trunk - it's in the front in a vert). Poke around the engine bay and see if anything's obviously worn out - it'll give you a general indication of how much the owner takes care of his car in general.

Also make sure when you go to test drive it that it's starting from a dead cold. If it's already warm when you get there there's a chance he's hiding something like hard starting issues, etc. They can be common in these cars and are just a pain to deal with sometimes.

Good luck!

Last edited by Sea Aych; 09-18-2017 at 07:23 PM.
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Old 09-19-2017, 09:59 AM   #3
Syn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sea Aych View Post
I'd take a look at all that suspension stuff since it's not stock and see if it was frankensteined on install or if any corners were cut - you don't want to inherit a "replace all the rubber" car where everything's banged up and clunky.

Take it for a drive on the highway and check for driveline vibrations or braking vibrations, ask about the timing belt history if the current owner knows it, and check for rust anyways and always (especially on the jack pads/points and under where the battery would be in the trunk - it's in the front in a vert). Poke around the engine bay and see if anything's obviously worn out - it'll give you a general indication of how much the owner takes care of his car in general.

Also make sure when you go to test drive it that it's starting from a dead cold. If it's already warm when you get there there's a chance he's hiding something like hard starting issues, etc. They can be common in these cars and are just a pain to deal with sometimes.

Good luck!
Some great points, thank you.
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Old 03-07-2018, 08:22 PM   #4
TSI
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Cars from Japan tend to be well-maintained due to their Shaken requirements. When was it imported?

Sea Aych covered most of it. I'll add to listen for vacuum leaks from the engine, check the condition of the convertible top seals and straps, and the operation of the mechanism (power or manual?). Brake and fuel lines are also on the list.
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