The time has come to sell my Delphin Metallic 1987 325is. I started driving E30’s back in 2003 after purchasing my first 325i for $700. It was arguably the coolest cheap car you could buy back then. These days, a 325is in original form commands more dollars and more respect after many years of flying under the radar. The secret is out: the E30 is a bonafide cult classic.
Finding a glass company that has the skill to replace the windshield in your classic BMW can be a very challenging task in 2016. Your E30 most likely sports its original windshield or has one that was last replaced several decades ago. Over time, pitting of the front glass can make it nearly impossible to drive in sunny conditions due to the solar glare and reduced visibility.
This weekend I came across a 1987 325is which has been converted to E30 M3 bodywork and listed on eBay. This M3 tribute car appears to have been done rather well and was built with some authentic E30 M3 body panels. It doesn’t have an M3 c-pillar however, which certainly gives it away that it’s a standard E30 body.
Today’s Craigslist find brings us to Ventura, California. A 1987 325is with automatic transmission is listed for only $5400 which seems to be well priced for the condition. Of course, the automatic transmission detracts from the value a bit compared to an original factory 5 speed model.
Keeping your E30 in good running order doesn’t have to be costly. If you’re a BMW enthusiast, chances are you’re also a DIY enthusiast. Let’s be honest, not many people can afford to run to their indie mechanic every time they need a repair on a car that’s over twenty years old. For example, something as simple as a clutch slave cylinder replacement can cost nearly $400 with parts, labor and tax at a local garage. This is something the weekend mechanic can repair in a few hours with around $60 in parts.
Learning how to correctly adjust the valves on your M20 engine is an essential part of E30 ownership. Howling sewing machine sounds are to the E30 as air cooled flat six sounds are to the Porsche 911. Just how much sewing machine you get is up to you and your valve adjusting skills.