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richpngu
Sep 19, 2006


I am looking at picking up a 96 BMW 318i, the car has 150k on it and the family is the original owners. From the reviews i have read about the car, everyone says its a solid car as long as the maintenance is kept up and done on schedule. The owners said that they would be getting the ignition fix, which i read is a common problem with these cars. There is a small oil leak but i have read that it is an easy fix that would only take a few hrs of work. They asking $1200 for the car, do you guys think that this is a good deal.

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CamH
Apr 11, 2008



I guess it could be!

edit: what color is it?

Nitr0
Aug 17, 2005

IT'S FREE REAL ESTATE


318 is a pretty gutless engine but 1200 isn't bad as long as it runs. I dunno, buy it if you want.

charliemonster42
Sep 14, 2005
VW: Ze Official Kar Ov Ze Sird Reich

This is gonna be a good one.

Make sure you check that the blinker fluid has been topped up regularly, they're very picky about that.

richpngu
Sep 19, 2006


CamH posted:

I guess it could be!

edit: what color is it?

alpine white

Nitr0 posted:

318 is a pretty gutless engine but 1200 isn't bad as long as it runs. I dunno, buy it if you want.

i am going to use this as my commuter car for school, so it actually works out because it gets high 20s on the freeway.

Lowclock
Oct 26, 2005


Automatic or manual? The 4L30E is a weird piece of poo poo, although it's relatively cheap to fix.

LO Technology
Mar 5, 2011

by Fistgrrl


richpngu posted:

The owners said that they would be getting the ignition fix, which i read is a common problem with these cars.

By "ignition problem" I guess you refer to the steering/ignition-lock problem. This is not a small issue labor-wise and potentially a safety issue too.

It's not something you fix in an hour or so. Also the ignition-lock/Steering-lock/backplate-assembly isn't exactly a cheap component, and replacing it with a re-keyed used one is not recommendable.

If my guess is correct, I would be drat sure they really replace it.

InitialDave
Jun 14, 2007

I want to believe


I'm going to say no, because BMWs should have a straight six, and the only 318 anyone should buy is an E30 318iS.

It sounds like an ok deal if they fix the issues before you buy it, but for a "getting to school" car, and if you're going to be running on a tight budget (which I infer you might, from your comment about mpg), a Toyota/Nissan/Honda from the same period might be a safer bet.

Elephanthead
Sep 11, 2008


I am not sure you can purchase a Toyota/Nissan/Honda of the same age for the same money that doesn't have the same amount of mechanical problems. People do not sell reliable cars for $1,200.

InitialDave
Jun 14, 2007

I want to believe


Elephanthead posted:

I am not sure you can purchase a Toyota/Nissan/Honda of the same age for the same money that doesn't have the same amount of mechanical problems. People do not sell reliable cars for $1,200.
Oops, I forgot about the thing with US car prices (new ones ridiculously cheap, used market hilariously overpriced).

Over here, $1,200 will always (and indeed, has previously managed to) get me something like a Corolla in decent average condition with everything still working, even though our new car prices are almost 50% higher than yours like-for-like.

runwiled
Feb 21, 2011


InitialDave posted:

I'm going to say no, because BMWs should have a straight six, and the only 318 anyone should buy is an E30 318iS.


But...but... I couldn't afford to run a straight-six

meatpimp
May 15, 2004

Psst... wanna buy some high quality meat?


richpngu posted:

I am looking at picking up a 96 BMW 318i, the car has 150k on it and the family is the original owners. From the reviews i have read about the car, everyone says its a solid car as long as the maintenance is kept up and done on schedule. The owners said that they would be getting the ignition fix, which i read is a common problem with these cars. There is a small oil leak but i have read that it is an easy fix that would only take a few hrs of work. They asking $1200 for the car, do you guys think that this is a good deal.

Hi AI, I'm looking at a 15 year old car. It's white. Should I buy it? Is it a good car?

Cat Terrist
Nov 9, 2004

SAY HELLO TO MY AXE

15 year old Bleed My Wallet going cheap?

THere's going to be a bloody big catch, BMW's do not go cheap. Even a shitbox like the 318 was when it was new, they do not become cheap unless there's something wrong

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Lincoln Freak
Sep 11, 2001
The Surgeon General never said anything about smoking the competition!

Cat Terrist posted:

15 year old Bleed My Wallet going cheap?

THere's going to be a bloody big catch, BMW's do not go cheap. Even a shitbox like the 318 was when it was new, they do not become cheap unless there's something wrong

This. A thousand times this.

Since you're a student fretting about gas mileage and a $1200 purchase price, I'm going to assume you have little money. Listen to us:

There is nothing more expensive than a cheap BMW.

All older cars are going to require maintainence and repairs. You want to find the ones where the parts and labor costs won't surprise sex you sideways.

$1200 should net you an ugly but reliable Cavalier, Escort, or Altima. Cheap to fix, maintain, and insure.

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