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I'm thinking about buying a ti. Ask all your questions about the possible purchase of a ti. Keep in mind, we are biased.

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Old 03-01-2011, 08:03 PM   #1
illini837
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Default As the thread title says...I really really want a 318ti

Hello, So this is my first post on 318ti.org but I've visited the website for years. I'm seriously considering finally buying a 318ti this summer but I have a few questions to the many experienced members here. I'll admit I'm in/going to college and I want to get a car to whip around this year but since I'm a straped for cash student, I would like a cheap car. My first question would be, is there any diffrence between the sport/M package or the regular car? I've seen many of both cars and I was wondering if there is a significanct diffrence between the two. Any diffrence cost wise? Second, I love to race cars and of course would like to bring my 318ti to the track when I get it. Do any of you recomend what to do/make a 318ti race worthy (I would love to instal a roll cage, roll bar, new suspension, etc.)? Also, should I look for specific things on the car to see if it is in good shape to race? Third, does anyone recomend specific things to work on the car to make the 318ti top notch after I buy it? I suspect that I'll have to buy a car with over 100k miles on it. Should I look out for specific parts to replace or anything else like it when I make a decision to buy the car? Finaly, what should I expect for the price of the 318ti should be? As I said before I would like the best car for the cheapest price, don't we all : ). Thanks for reading guys p.s.: if anyone is looking to sell their 318ti in the Chicago land area feel free to respond.
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Old 03-03-2011, 12:04 AM   #2
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the sport package comes with M3 style bumpers, a different interior, slightly lower suspension and slightly thicker sway bars and 16" rims, in 95 the sport package was just the interior and suspension but you could get it with an LSD since BMW stopped offering LSDs in non-M cars in 96

cooling systems and window regulators are the most common problems, there's a few really good threads on here detailing how to fix them
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:31 AM   #3
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Buy the best ti that you can afford. You never come out financially buying a cheap car and fixing it up. I would try to find a ti that was owned by a non-enthusiast, and was maintained by the dealer. That's what I did, anyway.
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Old 03-08-2011, 03:27 PM   #4
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^ i agree with that.
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Old 03-10-2011, 01:57 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jca View Post
Buy the best ti that you can afford. You never come out financially buying a cheap car and fixing it up. I would try to find a ti that was owned by a non-enthusiast, and was maintained by the dealer. That's what I did, anyway.
Why from a non-enthusiast? Just curious your thoughts on that. I'm just starting the process of looking for a 318ti for my son, and would have thought that buying from an enthusiast would be the way to go. Oh, and are you at Sheppard? I just left from there...
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Old 03-10-2011, 02:32 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BiloxiGuy View Post
Why from a non-enthusiast?
I guess it really depends what type of enthusiast.
Some will cut corners or mod a car to their taste and budget.
You are more likely to get a stock car from a non-enthusiast.
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Old 03-10-2011, 04:36 PM   #7
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The problem is that these days, even the newest 318ti is too old for a BMW dealer (or any front line dealer for that matter) to keep in the lot. (Unless it had wicked low miles, like < 50K...)

They get wholesaled and the records get lost, and BMW of America is NO help at getting car history in my experience.

At this point you should start with finding a good independent BMW mechanic to do a survey of the car before you buy. The newest one in the pipe in the US is a 98/99 car.
Its going to average about 100K miles. and up.

Budget to do day 1:
Radiator,
Coolant pipes and fittings under manifold,
all the rubber lines,
the air tube from the throttle body to the air flow meter.
Fluids (PS, Trans, Engine)

Plan on 500 to 1000 to basically do a heavy service so you know whats what...

Never ever drive with the temp gage past the center point. "Its a bad thing" (TM)

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Old 03-20-2011, 02:26 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BiloxiGuy View Post
Why from a non-enthusiast? Just curious your thoughts on that.
Think of the stock as a clean slate. If you were to get a car from an enthusiast, things on the car may not suite your personal tastes and may have problems with it. Also you may never known what has completely been done to the car to tune/mod it. With the stock you can mod or enjoy the car the way it is with no worries. Good luck finding one! haha
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Old 04-10-2011, 12:34 PM   #9
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Mine is for sale
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Old 04-14-2011, 05:23 AM   #10
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Thanks guys for the responses. I'm looking at a 318ti right now with a head gasket that needs to be replaced, I'm thinking about replacing it with a 4 valve instead of a 2 valve, and then putting on a chip... Any comments or advice??
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Old 04-14-2011, 05:34 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illini837 View Post
Thanks guys for the responses. I'm looking at a 318ti right now with a head gasket that needs to be replaced, I'm thinking about replacing it with a 4 valve instead of a 2 valve, and then putting on a chip... Any comments or advice??

I'd say that you're treading into very dangerous territory by purchasing a ti that "needs a head gasket". Depending on what actually happened to the engine to necessitate the new head gasket, you could be looking at anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars to get that car road worthy again. Unless you know the seller or know a good amount about the car's history, I would probably walk away from that seemingly "good deal".
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Old 04-14-2011, 06:33 AM   #12
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??/ All m42's in E36 chassis are 4 valve motors. Arent they??

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Old 04-14-2011, 07:18 AM   #13
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4cyl 16 valve DOHC

8 intake valves, 8 exhaust valves, no?
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Old 04-15-2011, 03:54 AM   #14
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Biloxi Guy,

I take it that you are active duty Air Force and stationed at Keesler, right? I retired from Sheppard in 2006; was stationed here three times, two by design. I like the non-enthusiast ti for some of the same reasons mentioned above. I also happen to think that the average ti enthusiast drives his car hard, and that kind of car I shy away from. I'm also a fan of base models which if owned by an older non-enthusiast is almost sure never to have been abused. I continue to look at the ti ads just for fun and the few pristine examples out there are usually base or active models, not sports. I wouldn't buy a ti with much over 100,000 miles on the odometer. You can find them, but you have to watch and wait and then be prepared to get on a plane and go get the car. That's what I did anyway, and I had a ball doing it. I'm sure that your daughter will love getting a ti. They're fun cars, but they are not reliable if not well maintained. Good luck finding a nice one, and have a great Air Force day was we used to say.
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