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Old 12-21-2004, 07:12 PM   #1
BMetal
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Question Used e36 engine issues?



Looking at a few late 90's e36 328IS and was wondering if there are any major engine issues with these cars? How do they retain their power? Are there any gasket or mounting issues. Anything you could tell me would help.
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Old 12-21-2004, 09:16 PM   #2
DINAN 3
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Thumbs up My Engine runs STRONG at 122K

BMetal,

From my experience and I believe most fellow owners on this board will back me in saying: "BMW engines are known for their strength and reliability, well above 300K.....An E36 inline six is ONLY considered high mileage beyond 250K...they really are bulletproof".
Where you will run into repair cost is suspension components and minor electrical glitches (not as common on late '90's cars), as well as the standard Inspection I (+/- C $600 @60K) & II (+/- C$900@ 120K).
Make sure you find yourself a good privately run garage (stay away from the dealer) and shop for your parts online (much cheaper and higher quality than BMW original).
Keep in mind that BMW's are sporty kind of cars and therefor get driven accordingly. Suspension and brakes get most of the wear and tear.
Otherwise, I find these cars no more expensive to maintain than the average import. My '98 328ia set me back on average $1200/year in maintenance (and I'm fussy about my baby), over the past 4 years that I have owned it. The engine is really the last of your worries, as long as you change your oil frequently (every 5K) and keep your car in optimum shape.

Best,

Marv.
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Old 12-21-2004, 09:25 PM   #3
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Thanks

Awesome. That's a lot of the info I was looking for. One of the reasons I asked was I'm trying to decide whether or not to buy a 98 328IS now, or save a little longer and go for the 2001-02 330ci. I honestly like the e36 body/styling/simplicity much more, but I don't know too much about the e46 either, other than the power difference and what you can read in car reviews.
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Old 12-21-2004, 09:53 PM   #4
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Another note that would should slant you over to the e46 model since it snows were you are.
They carry over the same reliability and faults (- the electrical but their not old yet)
but also have double sided gavenized steel unlike the e36 model which is only one sided. Ever see the rust on a 90 Audi and notice how little their is? This is why.
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Old 12-22-2004, 03:37 AM   #5
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Go with the 328iS

A 328iS w/ a few choice mods and a ssk kit in it will always rip a 330ci + the body of the e36 is a timeless classic.
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Old 12-22-2004, 06:30 AM   #6
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save up for the e46 if you can afford it, but the e36 is a great car to own as well...very few problems once a the common ones are fixed ahead of time. (ie: water pump)
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Old 12-22-2004, 02:28 PM   #7
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Thumbs up Both are GREAT cars

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMetal
Awesome. That's a lot of the info I was looking for. One of the reasons I asked was I'm trying to decide whether or not to buy a 98 328IS now, or save a little longer and go for the 2001-02 330ci. I honestly like the e36 body/styling/simplicity much more, but I don't know too much about the e46 either, other than the power difference and what you can read in car reviews.
Funny.....I faced the exact same dilema back in 2000, when I bought my car.
Wether you buy an E36 or 46 is a personal choice, which you have to make based on your current and future anticipated lifestyle.
I always try to get the most for my buck and the deal I scored on my car was hard to pass on, especialy since it was a Montreal Blue w/Dove Grey interior (stunning combo ),all HYW driven, executive car.

Therefor, without knowing more about your lifestyle, it is difficult for me to steer you towards one vehicle or the other. My only advice is, if you're gonna go for an E36, make sure to ONLY buy a 1998 or if lucky a '99 car.
It was their last year of production and most of the troublespots had been ironed out by then. Another option, if you have the extra coin, might be to testdrive an E36 M3. That would probably be your best value/$ at the moment.

GOOD LUCK !
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Old 12-22-2004, 05:36 PM   #8
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Hmmm... Much to think about. Thanks for all the help.
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Old 12-22-2004, 06:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DINAN 3
BMetal,

From my experience and I believe most fellow owners on this board will back me in saying: "BMW engines are known for their strength and reliability, well above 300K.....An E36 inline six is ONLY considered high mileage beyond 250K...they really are bulletproof".
Where you will run into repair cost is suspension components and minor electrical glitches (not as common on late '90's cars), as well as the standard Inspection I (+/- C $600 @60K) & II (+/- C$900@ 120K).
Make sure you find yourself a good privately run garage (stay away from the dealer) and shop for your parts online (much cheaper and higher quality than BMW original).
Keep in mind that BMW's are sporty kind of cars and therefor get driven accordingly. Suspension and brakes get most of the wear and tear.
Otherwise, I find these cars no more expensive to maintain than the average import. My '98 328ia set me back on average $1200/year in maintenance (and I'm fussy about my baby), over the past 4 years that I have owned it. The engine is really the last of your worries, as long as you change your oil frequently (every 5K) and keep your car in optimum shape.

Best,

Marv.
if i don't know much about cars, how would i know what would need fixing/maintaining, and when?
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Old 12-22-2004, 06:25 PM   #10
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Lightbulb Maintenance

Find a good privately run BMW shop in your area (ask on these boards for a referal) + pickup a detailed print-out of Inspection I & II Service Schedules from your BMW dealership's service department.
If you have any further questions.....just post them on these boards...that's what I do when I'm unsure.
The closest shop to St Cathrines I know is located in Oakville, which probably is to far for you.

Best,

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Old 12-24-2004, 04:12 PM   #11
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you will hear that the engines on BMW's are pretty much bullet proof.
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