Searching for an E30 M3 in 2016 is no easy task. The classic German car bubble has been inflating since 2010 and has yet to lose any momentum. The days of ratty $10,000 range E30 M3 finds are long gone, now just old legends that we will reminisce about for years to come. These days, even a heavily road worn M3 can command big dollars. That brings us to today’s eBay find, a 1988 model with 325,000 hard earned miles.
The E30 318is is commonly referred to as the poor man’s M3. It shares some traits with the M3 including a 4 cylinder engine, near perfect 50-50 weight distribution and a thrilling driving experience. While it’s 1.8 liter M42 engine boasts a modest 138 horsepower compared to the M3’s 197 horsepower, it is still a fun little drive.
Finding a rust free E30 325ix these days can be extremely challenging, considering they were designed for traversing snow, ice and salt covered roads. The best region to buy any vintage car is obviously in the South or West, far away from any frozen precipitation. Today’s 325ix find brings us to Costa Mesa, California. Listed on Craigslist for $6,000 this iX boasts a desirable 5 speed manual transmission and a rust free sun baked body. Always choose faded paint and a dry body over gloss and rust.