1989 BMW 320i Touring (wagon), ~254,000km
I bought this car in January 2009 from the previous owner who had imported it from Germany and had the M52 swap done (see ‘Drivetrain’ below). I’ve put about 60,000km on it since then, including three round trips from Ontario to Newfoundland. The combination of classic E30 style, wagon practicality, and “modern” BMW power makes for a pretty compelling and rare package. The bare-bones options list means there is very little to go wrong, and it has proven to be a pretty reliable car. I’m a bit hesitant to sell, but I have my eye on an E39 525iT manual wagon as a replacement.
Diamantschwarz-metallic paint, probably mostly original - faded, scratched, chipped and dinged. This has been my year-round daily driver for 4 years. It is not a pristine collector car, but it’s not a rust bucket either. Note this is a German car and the body panels don’t have the VIN stickers that North American cars do. It has factory shadowline trim. Being a German car, it has euro “smiley” head lights. I think both fog light lenses are cracked.
This car basically came with no options: manual windows, manual sunroof, no OBC (analog clock), and no A/C. It has a grey cloth interior. It was originally equipped with ‘comfort’ seats, which were in pretty poor condition when I bought it. I replaced these with factory sport seats (no rips or tears). I also had the headliner recovered in black cloth, since it was torn, stained, and falling down. There are no cracks in the dash. It has a Nakamichi CD-45z head-unit which sounds good and looks reasonably period-correct. This is hooked up to a Hi-Fonics amp, Boston Acoustics Rally components in the front and a small Infinity sub that I’ve been meaning to build a box for but haven’t.
The original 2.0 six was swapped for a 2.8 M52 out of a ‘97 328i by Bimmersport Automotive (PO had this done) with an OBD I conversion. It is equipped with the 5spd manual from the same car, and a 2.93 LSD rear-end. I have documentation for the swap and the car the swap parts came from. The drive train has about 150,000 km on it.
Suspension and steering:
This car has a manual steering rack. It’s fairly heavy at parking lot speeds (depending on the tires), but feels great at city and highway speeds. It is not a ‘quick’ rack. It sits on Bilstein Sports with Tokico springs. It currently has 205/50-15 Kumho XS’s on it, mounted on 15x7 ACT LS’s (Ronals). I bought these new a couple of years ago as probably the last NOS set of these wheels available in North America. Since these also fit my Miata, sale of the car without these wheels is negotiable if they’re not to your taste.
Front brakes were new last summer. The rears probably need some attention - I will likely do them prior to the sale.
- 4 185/65/14 Cooper Weather-Master snow tires mounted on bottle caps. Snow tires have three or four seasons on them.
- Thule roof rack with 2 fork-mount bike carriers.
- Bavauto rubber floor mats
Major maintenance history:
- RF wheel bearing (May 2013)
- Gas tank & hard lines (Feb 2013)
- Exhaust (Feb 2013)
- Front calipers, rotors, and pads; fluid flush (July 2012)
- Accessory belt (July 2012)
- Transmission mounts, CSB, guibo, and rebuilt driveshaft (Nov 2011)
- Rear subframe bushings and rear wheel bearings (Sept 2009)
- My insurance company didn’t have any issue insuring this car, though I had to explain to them that it was a german import. That said, best to go to your insurance company for a quote with the VIN before making a deal on this car.
- Technically, it is in need of a new cat. It passed e-test last time when tested as a hot-rod under 1980 emissions standards (engine swap to an engine not available in that car; original engine has no Canadian emission standards). It should still qualify as a hot-rod under the new driveclean program, and the test should now be even less stringent (2 speed idle test only). It should pass a regular emissions test with a new cat, but I’m not particularly interested in putting one in.
- Selling as-is.
You can contact me by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
These are older pictures (different wheels):
This one is from last summer:
I'll take some newer shots this week.