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Best BMW for a 30 yr old

Discussion in 'Buy, Lease, Finance & Insurance' started by Autohaus, Dec 10, 2008.

    Autohaus guest

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    Currently my household has a 87 528eA, a 01 525iM and a 03 325xiA. I am considering these two other BMW's. A 1985 M535iM with 200K for $3700 vs 1992 535iM with 190K for $3250. Both cars have extensive work done to it. M535iM needs a muffler. Has minor rust. 535iM has no rust. Either of these cars (if I do decide on buying a 4th bimmer) would (are you ready for this!?!?) would be the DD. I don't know what to do :confused:. I do miss the E34 535iA/E34 525iM that I had. However, M535iM's are rare. Heck, the E34 535i is rare as well. The M535iM is red on tan cloth while the 535iM is black on tan. The M535iM will also be included with rotors and pads all around and a euro cluster and some other suspension parts (car is lowered with 17's and new tires). All fluids changed out. 535iM had a new clutch put in and includes snows. I saw and drove the M535iM on Black Friday and I was impressed. Need advice. And no, I'm not going to college (graduated from SUNY New Paltz class of 06) so I'm not worried about size, space, etc... Any of these cars would become Peyton's car (in about 15 years from now) but maybe by then he will want a 2015 F10 M5 ;). Help me decide................
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    az3579

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    Umm... why are you getting a 4th? Where the heck are ya gonna park it? BMWs are already pouring out of your household as it is! You even park one of them on he street where lots of people pass by...


    And what will happen when your 5th is on the way? 135i, perhaps? :rolleyes:
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    mooseheadm5

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    Does the euro E28 have a close ratio gear box?
    ABS? Do you have snows for it already? If you are going to beat it through the snow, you know that it will only rust more, and you may not care. Any critical rust? How are the floor pans, frame rails, rear bumper mounts, tail lights, license plate lights, suspension mounts, gas tank, etc? With the exception of the tail lights and license plate lights, any serious rust in any of the other areas would be a deal breaker for me (unless I could get it cheaper and install all the goodies on the 528e.) I don't like 17s on E28s. They are subject to tramlining and the ride is pretty harsh, not to mention tire noise and bent rims. Oh, that and wider, lower profile tires on an E28 tend to rip the inboard steering box mount tab from the subframe, and they beat the hell out of control arm bushings.
    I'd go for the E34 if it were my money, provided that it is in decent shape. Black and tan is a nice color combo. How is the interior? Are the door panels hosed? Does the cluster work properly? The new clutch is good, because they are time consuming to install, and the parts alone are over $350. Comes with snows that will work on the 528e, as well.

    Autohaus guest

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    Fortunately I don't drink, do drugs nor smoke. Unfortunately BMW is how I get high, drunk and smoke :). BMW is my drug. I just like the older one's with a stick. Well we are gonna see this house on Saturday and it sits on 3 acres. So I could park as many bimmers as I can.

    I am not sure about all the parts on the car. I am having 2nd thoughts about the M535i. I would bring it to my mechanic for a PPI. I haven't seen the E34. It is in NJ. Has been for sale for about a month. It is on bimmerforums. Lots of people have shown interest but no bites. If the E34 535iM is still available next month, I may offer $2750 in cold hard cash on the spot (he is asking $3250). Silly question as I know nothing about body work:

    1) Can rust be fixed? My 528e has some rust issues where you jack up the car on both drivers and passenger side under the fender.
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    CRKrieger

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    Anything can be fixed. The question is whether it's worth the bother. In those locations on a very common and not particularly desirable E28, my own opinion is, probably not. Part it out either to yourself (buy another good one onto which to install the good parts) or to others.
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    mooseheadm5

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    Terminal rust can be fixed, but the car better be worth a fortune. Terminal rust includes anything structural such as frame rails, suspension mounting points, shock towers, and rocker panels (where you have rust.) You essentially have to cut the car apart and add all new metal to fix it. It is generally not worth the trouble, plus you can only get the rust you can see. Don't buy another rusty car if it has terminal rust. Terminal rust makes it a parts car unless it is a Ferrari.

    Autohaus guest

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    This car holds a sentimental value to me. First car I have ever owned. Like a brother (or sister) to me. Sounds corny but I get attached to cars. I guess in my eyes its worth a fortune. That car made me into the BMW nerd I am :).
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    mooseheadm5

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    Well one rusty car is enough. I have a 535is that I am going to spend more on restoring than it is worth, but it is a family member. I get sentimental value, but if that M535i has any such structural rust, I'd probably run and hide. I sold my 3.5CSi (i dumped in a 91 535i motor and Motronics) due to standard coupe rust.

    Autohaus guest

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    So if I wanted another car get the 92 535iM. Gotcha. Yeah, having more than one rusty car is not good. I though about bringing my E28 to the guy who painted it about 9 years ago and have him give me estimates soon on the rust. Maybe after that I'll get the euro bumpers, etc... Now here is another option. $400 buys a M30, drivetrain and driveshaft from a E28 535i. Put that drivetrain into my 528eA? That drivetrain has 120K miles.
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    MGarrison

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    So.... anyone seen any good movies lately?? What's the weather like where you're at? :D :D

    Autohaus guest

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    I called in for work today. So did my wife. Gotta finish Christmas shopping today. I want to see Transporter 3 and The Day The Earth Stood Still. OFF TOPIC :rolleyes:
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    MGarrison

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    Well, ya... but! Steve closed the other thread, so we gotta hijack and sidetrack _something_!

    Title-wise, this seemed like the logical choice; and, unlike the other thread, this time we might figure the OP won't up & disappear after the initial post! :rolleyes::p;)

    It'll take a long time to make this thread EPIC tho... AND it might be kinda forced, the other one evolved out of it's own accord.
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    mooseheadm5

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    So now that you know rust is difficult to fix, are you still thinking of the M535i?
    As for the drivetrain swap into the 528e, if it turns out that the car needs have rust repaired, that would be an ideal time to drop the entire drivetrain out and restore the body. You will end up with more money in the car than it is "worth" but if you are going to fix rust, do it right or it jsut comes right back, and if you arer going to do it right, why not restore the car? And if you are going to restore the car, why not go for the big 6? I do have one bit of advice, though. If you want a big 6, why not go for an 88 753iM or 89 535iM powerplant? You get much better injection, more power, bigger valves and intake, etc. Or, dump in an M/S 50/52/54. It will bolt to your trans, and you can get almost as much power as the big 6 (more if you get a 2.8 or 3.0, or even 3.2 and go OBD1 or megasquirt.) THAT would be the perfect car for a 30 year old.

    Autohaus guest

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    You have some pretty good ideas. The thing is that I am torn between getting the M535i or a E34. I though about not buying any car for a while. Having three cars for two drivers is enough. However, I saw this 92 525iM for sale and I could probably get if for $1500. Has some upgrades like angel eyes, lowering kit and E39 M5 wheels plus two other sets of wheels. Service records and its pretty clean. And now, a moment of silence for the death of the thread "Best BMW for a 18 yr old"............
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    az3579

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    Uh, no. This thread isn't going to become epic, and there is no need to make it epic. :rolleyes:


    Methinks he should get the 535i. He loves E34's, and I doubt he'd be happy with an E28 that has rust, especially for over 3k. It's manual, it's more refined, and it's, well, a 5... he's a 5 lover. :p


    And he used to own one, so how's that for nostalgia. :)
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    mooseheadm5

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    1500 is a darn good price, if you ask me.

    Autohaus guest

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    5 is fine by me :D

    He is asking $2K OBO but I think offering him $1500 on the spot will make him fall for it. However, can't buy it till next month so I hope it will still be available but I doubt it. I though about selling the E39 M5 wheels on the car and putting on the BMW 17 inch he also has. How much do you think I could get those M5 wheels for? They are in excellent condition, no bends, no curb rash and they aren't fake knockoffs. If I could get like $700 for the set it would be almost 1/2 of what I paid for the whole car. Is the blower motor hard to install? Like how much labor involved? The ad states that it makes a loud noise and smoke comes out. The owner of the body shop (I trust as I have purchased two cars from him) said its the blower motor acting up.
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    az3579

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    We're going to see the car tomorrow. Hopefully it's everything you want it to be Chris, because what you need is another 5er. :rolleyes:


    Honestly, I'd be more excited for you if you got that house you were looking at. It looks cute in the pictures and I'm sure it looks better in person, though I still think it's a bit too small. But, for the price, you can't go wrong!

    Autohaus guest

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    That house would be great. Lots of space. Has a shed that can actually fit a car AND be able to walk around and do work in it (like I know how to take apart engines, transmissions, etc...) :rolleyes:. They are going to decide on either another family or us getting it. Hey Paul, if I get this house, come up during the spring so you can swap a M50 into Botond's E30 and restore my E28 :). As for the E34 525iM, I'll be able to decide if its in great mechanical shape (excluding the blower motor). A few more things:

    The owner is a police officer. When I called yesterday afternoon to see the car his ringtone was the Bad Boys theme...LOL.

    He states that the previous owner installed a newer engine (M50 non vanos) but no paperwork was present. Wouldn't the vin # of the car be stamped on the engine? If I see no vin # then the previous owner before the cop could have just taken it off. Shady! I guess the only way to tell is a PPI?
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    mooseheadm5

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    There should be a VIN on the motor. The only reason to replace the motor is if the original was fried. There would be no way to tell how old the replacement was, which likely came from wrecked car. It is possible that in the process of cleaning the motor that the VIN tag has come off (I think it is a sticker.) Good idea to do a compression test and look for the VIN. Check for oil leaks and odd noises from the motor.

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