E30 1986 325es

6/3/1996 – 6/14/2004

A perfect first car.  Slow but fun.  A drivers car.  And a mechanics car.

The picture above was taken on what would end up being the last time I ever saw this car, 4/19/2008.  The car was totaled shortly after in an accident (to the person I sold it to in 2004) but it was starting to rust out anyways so it was on its deathbed.  I believe it had over 250k miles.

Considering this car was flooded and I completely dissembled and reassembled it (see main BMW page for story) it was very reliable.  This car was ahead of its time in that it had ABS and other electronics (check control, on board computer, Digital Motor Electronics ignition controls) that were extremely advanced in 1986.  BMW was still learning and although the engine may be the most solid engine they ever built a few of the electronics including the idle stabilizer valve were finicky at best.  Oh yeah, and the A/C rarely worked.


  • Production date: 10/1/1985
  • M20 engine
  • Bronzit Beige Metallic
  • Leather sport seats
  • 5-speed manual transmission
  • s sport package (suspension/exterior/interior)
  • —-Sports suspension
  • —-Limited slip differential
  • —-Front and rear spoilers
  • —-M-Technic steering wheel


  • Eibach sport springs
  • Bilstein sport shocks
  • Short shift kit
  • BBS wheels
  • Stereo system
  • Black front spoiler
  • Rear view mirror with reading lights
  • K&N air filter
  • Dinan performance chip
  • Leather handbrake boot
  • Hardwired Valentine One radar detector
  • Illuminated shift knob
  • Illuminated window, sunroof switches
  • Winter floor mats
  • License plate frames
  • Fog lens guards


  • A/C system (9 times)
  • Water pump (5 times)
  • ABS sensor, brake sensor (3 times)
  • Idle control unit (3 times)
  • Coolant fan (3 times)
  • Muffler, resonator (2 times)
  • Guibo (2 times)
  • Antenna mast (2 times)
  • Blower motor (2 times)
  • Sub-frame bushings
  • Air flow meter
  • Motronic computer
  • Lights for on board computer
  • Back-up light switch
  • Service interval batteries
  • RPM sensor
  • Oil pressure sensor
  • Starter valve
  • Replace brake line
  • Replace parking brake cable
  • Cruise control clutch sensor
  • Washer fluid pump


  • Brake rotors/pads (3 times)
  • Spark plugs (3 times)
  • Oxygen sensors
  • Hoses/seals/belts/fluid/filters

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