150K on the old Bey-Em-Vey today!

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17,298
Location
OH
Want reliability plus good fuel economy and driving entertainment? Find a well cared for four cylinder e36. A drop top is always a plus, at least to me. I was determined to see 150K before storing the car for the winter. Last week, it looked as though I'd missed the window, with three or four inches of snow last Monday followed with a few 10F mornings. Things warmed up Saturday, with even warmer temps on the way and plenty of rain to wash away the road salt from the previous week. By Monday morning, it was 60F. It was cooler today, but dry. I got my two more days of commuting this fall out of the old BMW to reach my goal. I paid a little less than 4.5K for the car in 2010. It had 105K on it then, so by my standards, it now owes me nothing. The only thing I've had to do to it beyond routine maintenance over the intervening 45K has been to replace the boot that runs between the AFM, or MAP, or MAF, whatever it might be, and the intake manifold. I'd had a hunting idle as well as rough starting from rest for awhile, although the car was fine once you got it rolling and fuel economy was good. One day I was checking the oil and noticed a crack in the boot. I thought, well, you dummy, this is what's wrong. Ordered the part, which was maybe $30.00 delivered, replaced it in about as much time as it takes to fill the fuel tank, and presto, smooth idle and easy starts from rest were restored. Fuel economy remained about the same, which kind of surprised me, since I'd thought that the extra air might have caused a lean condition and an excess of O2 in the exhaust stream which would in turn have caused the O2 sensor to have called for a richer mixture. Anyway, the car has been reliable and enjoyable. It easily averages an abstemious 32-33 mpg top up or down. It also has very good A/C and heat and all of the toys still work, although I hope never to test the function of the deployable roll bars. Very happy with having purchased this old dear, a car that was fifteen years old when I bought it and will shortly be twenty years from build. I'd doubt that a '95 Honda would be any less trouble to own and use and the four cylinder e36 has no timing belt needing replacement.
 

fdcg27

Thread starter
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17,298
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OH
Yeah, but you've daily driven your Integra for how many years? You've also got another 64K on that car. I like Hondas and have always had good experience with them. I'm just impressed with how good an old BMW can be.
 

JHZR2

Staff member
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46,272
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New Jersey
Yep, I love my E30. Rust is starting to show underneath, but nothing topside that anyone would see. A blast to drive, fun to operate, simple to work on. Nearly 170k young. Hopefully I'll make 200k before rust or the need for a minivan makes me trade it. Too bad the newest ones are so much more complex and they try too hard to be "upscale". My 318 came with plastic wheel covers.
 
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9,122
Location
Marshfield , MA
I bought my first '88 528e with 150k on it. I drove it 12 yrs and put another 200K on it.A joy to work on compared to other cars. Im not hearing good things about later model UDMs though
 

fdcg27

Thread starter
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17,298
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OH
There is surface complexity and there is the real complexity of good design and development. I know that you're a W123 aficionado and we've had a couple of them ourselves. No later car has a better suspension than does the 123. Rough roads don't challenge it and no corner is too fast with the help that the rear end gives the driver. Oversteer dialed in to help the driver through an overcooked corner? Genius, and you don't even notice it when you drive a 123. It's just there. There is room for that kind of careful development in our current nannied into safe behavior cars, whether they be badged as Benzes, BMWs or Chevys.
 
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8,307
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Grand Rapids, MI
Originally Posted By: fdcg27
Yeah, but you've daily driven your Integra for how many years? You've also got another 64K on that car. I like Hondas and have always had good experience with them. I'm just impressed with how good an old BMW can be.
I bought it almost 8 years ago with around 120k on the clock. I do like Hondas and even with all of the repairs, I still love the car. It just hasn't been as reliable as I would've hoped... but that probably has more to do with how many years it's been driven in the rust belt.
 
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6,356
Location
KY
My 318ti rolled over 140k last week. I special ordered it in August 1995 and picked it up 19 years ago last Saturday. No major issues; t-stat, LCABs, a couple of idler pulleys, and a timing chain tensioner(replaced as a precaution). And since it's been my primary HPDE instructor car, two sets of pads and one set of rotors. And tires. Lots of tires... And yes, I know it's in need of a serious detail...
 
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3,941
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Ohio
MCompact... can you give me your rear subframe and hub assembly? My 28 year old 325i convertible could use the 5 lugs laugh
 
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6,170
Location
North Coast
I guess 150k on a BMW is a milestone...but honestly I am now used to a Lexus where at 150k you change the spark plugs and get ready for the next 150k.... hide
 
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1,127
Location
USA
I bought my 1996 BMW 318ti in May 2004 at 97,000 miles. It's now at 244,000 miles. I love the car but I can't say it's been great in-terms of having its issues. They mostly are minor, and thankfully I do everything myself. . Things that have failed: Cam sensor Cam sensor - again Idle Control Valve Thermostat Plastic cooling connector fell apart Valve cover gasket leak Oil filter housing gasket leak Oil pan gasket leak Washer pump ABS unit Headliner fell Driver seat frame cracked Driver's side mirror heating element Passenger side mirror heating element Driveshaft u-joint Front control arm ball joint(s) Front control arm ball joint(s) - again Rear spring snapped - also destroying a CV boot. Rear spring snapped - again Fuel pump (215,000 miles in) Alternator (175,000 miles in) Fuel pump relay Fuel level sensor Driver's side belt buckle switch (airbag light triggered) Fuel pressure regulator Exhaust bracket rusted away Brake light switch Driver's side window regulator Drivers side window switch Passengers side window switch Sheet metal cracked at hatch latch Hatch lift support Hood lift supports Oxygen sensor Cold weather coolant leak now Longer than the Chicago phone directory wink
 
Messages
6,356
Location
KY
Originally Posted By: L_Sludger
MCompact... can you give me your rear subframe and hub assembly? My 28 year old 325i convertible could use the 5 lugs laugh
Sorry... wink Right now I'm trying to figure out how to fit an N20 under the hood...
 
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10,122
Location
Nut farm
Originally Posted By: MCompact
Originally Posted By: L_Sludger
MCompact... can you give me your rear subframe and hub assembly? My 28 year old 325i convertible could use the 5 lugs laugh
Sorry... wink Right now I'm trying to figure out how to fit an N20 under the hood...
LS6 might be easier. laugh
 
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6,356
Location
KY
Originally Posted By: Jarlaxle
LS6 might be easier. laugh
Aside from old school hot rods, I'm not a fan of swapping in an engine of a different make. I can always stuff an S52 or similar under the hood with not a lot of trouble, but I'd like to keep it a four banger...
 
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