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Old 07-14-2019, 07:25 PM   #1
Senior Member
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: San Diego
Posts: 174
iTrader: (1)
Default TWO! 1996 California Top Cars

Thanks to everyone that asked about these. A local 318ti enthusiast is converting the silver car for rally racing and the red car will have a new lease as his wife's DD.
Glad to see them moving to their next chapter...

We have TWO! 1996 California Top 318ti Cars I need to find a new home for.
Looking to get $2995 (OBO) for the pair.

The cars are here in San Diego. One is a project my daughter and I have almost complete and the other was her daily driver. Unfortunately, she now lives an hour away from me making it difficult to finish the project.

If it makes sense, I am willing to sell a short list of parts separately but I don’t want to part out the cars. Although I would entertain selling them separately.

Racing Dynamics Strut
M-Tech 318ti Wing
M-Tech Sway Bars (318ti specific)
M-Tech Rear Bumper

We have M44 parts to go with the sale too.
Although we still have a 1998 318ti, it now sports an M52 under it’s hood.

Car #1:
1996 California Top 318ti Red, 5 speed, 113,000 miles shown on the clock.
Safety inspection done
Registration paid
Ready to smog (plan to get this done ASAP)
Interior good (needs cleaning & door panels installed)
M-Sport Rear Bumper (installed)
M-Tech Side Skirts (installed)
M-Tech Larger Sway Bars (need install)
New brakes including vented front rotor conversion
Recent work includes: Oil filter housing gasket/O-rings, Coolant & Rear wheel bearing
Car had a new factory BMW top installed on it soon before we bought the car. It “lived” in a carport when we bought it and has been kept under cover since then.
The car has a salvage title from an off pavement excursion that bent control arms and caused some damage to the front bumper and hood. The control arms have been replaced. The bumper and hood are still on the car. I figured we would get an M-sport front bumper and maybe find a red 4 door hood to finish it off.

Car #2:
1996 California Top 318ti Silver, Automatic, actual mileage unknown but likely 200k +. (The cluster was replaced when the fuel gauge stopped working)
The good:
Lots of good parts including a rebuilt low mileage M44 and complete cooling system.
We recently installed this motor and cooling system in the car to replace the old M44.
Great condition top including brass replacement gear in the motor assembly.

Photos Link:

I read somewhere there were 600 California Top cars imported for dealer sale for 1996 and they could be special ordered with the California top through the 1999 model year so I think they have pretty low production numbers. I am not sure what the manual to automatic numbers were but most I see have automatics.

For those unfamiliar and that might suggest a "convertible" to be a better choice, for a rag top car, these are very quiet compared with a convertible. One feature not easily noticed is that these cars have a model specific windshield rubber with an extra protrusion I would guess causes the airflow to miss the leading edge of the top. Another bit of impressive German engineering detail I suppose.

Some of the mechanics for the California top are shared with the VW Polo model but I do not know if the tops are the same size or interchangeable. I have the complete BMW service manual for the top posted somewhere on the site too.

98 318ti MSport M52, 88 M3, 97 M3/4

Last edited by Trusted-1; 11-05-2019 at 04:28 PM. Reason: Sold
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Old 08-28-2019, 03:43 PM   #2
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This is the "center of the universe" for ti enthusiasts globally and you have placed a free ad to target that audience. Smart.

Please consider becoming a site supporter. The future of the site is depending on user support.

Thank you.
"Speed's just a question of money. How fast you 'wanna go?"

Order Swap Manuals Here => http://www.318ti.org/forum/showthread.php?t=12912

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