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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 01-11-2014, 01:50 AM   #41
beeemerdude
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These guys ALL trying to SCARE you off on maintenance costs.

Owned my 5 spd 2005 40k 325ci cabrio for 4 years 4 months. TOTAL maintenance costs to date: $240. (in 4 years.) Granted, I keep my mileage low and I drive winter beaters (year round) . My 325ci baby is my spring/summer/fall driver, usually weekend driver, but sometimes drive to work....but WINTER BEATERS are where it's at. $100 Honda Civic to date...cost me...hmmm. $100 ...+ 2 oil changes in 6 years. Life is good.








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Old 01-11-2014, 04:07 AM   #42
Cowspoo
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Originally Posted by zheka130 View Post
Thermostat and water pump $100 each, coolant probably $60, i rounded it too $300

spark plugs $20 each, and had to give some money to the mechanic that allows me to use space in his shop
Stop going to the dealer, please.

Water Pump $50

Thermostat $58

Coolant $25

6 Spark plugs for $38
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Old 01-11-2014, 04:44 AM   #43
peytonracer4
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Originally Posted by Devakya View Post
That makes ALOT of sense. All of you guys have been great at helping me make a decision, I was afraid that when I registered on this website I would just get flamed and told to gtfo, but you guys have been nothing but helpful. I can't thank you enough. After reading all of your responses it is clear I'm i no place to comfortably own one. I'm going to do what you're all advising, and switch my priorities for now. So when that ultimate driving machine finally comes into my possession, it will be done the right way.
do you actually work on cars? if so, maybe you should look into an e30. cheap (although prices are rising) fairly easy to work on and an extremely rewarding driving experience.

and btw, just because they're old doesn't mean they're not reliable. i had a 318is that never let me down. and i currently have a 325i convertible that has only had one serious issue and it was resolved by me for cheap. it was a no start issue.
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Old 01-11-2014, 08:00 AM   #44
mjpgolf1
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Originally Posted by beeemerdude View Post
These guys ALL trying to SCARE you off on maintenance costs.

Owned my 5 spd 2005 40k 325ci cabrio for 4 years 4 months. TOTAL maintenance costs to date: $240. (in 4 years.) Granted, I keep my mileage low and I drive winter beaters (year round) . My 325ci baby is my spring/summer/fall driver, usually weekend driver, but sometimes drive to work....but WINTER BEATERS are where it's at. $100 Honda Civic to date...cost me...hmmm. $100 ...+ 2 oil changes in 6 years. Life is good.







You guys are forgetting that there's a big difference between a 2005 with 40k miles and a $5000 high mileage e46 like OP is budgeted for. You can't buy an 05 with 40k miles for $5000. He's going to be looking at 100k mile older cars that are in need of maintenance.


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Old 01-11-2014, 08:04 AM   #45
mjpgolf1
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Originally Posted by tonycajjo View Post
get on with it... get a 5 speed and hit it hard.
Yeah there ya go! Then OP can be broke just like most others here. He's got $5000. It's not going to happen. You need to prepare for the worst and hope for the best. If he rolls the dice and hopes that he doesn't have any issues and then ends up having huge maintenance problems, which is very common, then he's going to have money problems.


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Old 01-11-2014, 11:18 AM   #46
zheka130
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Originally Posted by Cowspoo View Post

Perhaps in the USA prices are lower,

except for coolant, nothing else was bought at the dealer

just checked on the same website where i bought these things

Graf water pump $103
Wahler thermostat $100

spark plugs were the required NGK ones,
I know cheaper ones can be bought for $7, but whats the point in that

you buy good ones, once and thats it for a long time
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:31 AM   #47
philliplong
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Your car will come when you aren't looking for it. That is what happened with me. I got fed up with all the crap online and then I started searching for Japanese cars then one day doing a lucky out of the blue search I found my car on Craig's list.
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:53 AM   #48
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BMWs are not expensive. You can easily find a e46 for $3000. Put $500 in misc. stuff if it really needs it and drive the **** out of it.

I've seen plenty with 150k miles in good condition from anywhere between 3000-5000.
These are bmw's. Not porsche, not ferrari. They are fun but they are not a "rich man's car". They are a wannabe rich man's car lol.

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Old 01-11-2014, 12:09 PM   #49
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BMWs are not expensive. You can easily find a e46 for $3000. Put $500 in misc. stuff if it really needs it and drive the **** out of it.

I've seen plenty with 150k miles in good condition from anywhere between 3000-5000.
These are bmw's. Not porsche, not ferrari. They are fun but they are not a "rich man's car". They are a wannabe rich man's car lol.
If he gets lucky. What if the guy doing his PPI doesn't know how to check the subframe? $1500-5000 Control arms--$500 Cooling system--$5-700
Tires--$4-500

What if the guy checking it doesn't figure out the car had overheated and the head is cracked? $1000-1500

Shocks/struts? Universal joint, csb, motor mounts, trans mounts...things even though a diyer could do, some they won't feel secure enough to do.

Just saying. He might get lucky; but if he doesn't? In the long run, sure, I agree with you. As golf said, hope for the best but plan for the worst.

There are many fanatics here on a short budget looking for bandaid fixes all the time...not withstanding some favorable anecdotal reports here, the General Forum reflects pretty well what the odds will be.
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Old 01-11-2014, 12:15 PM   #50
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BMWs are not expensive. You can easily find a e46 for $3000. Put $500 in misc. stuff if it really needs it and drive the **** out of it.

I've seen plenty with 150k miles in good condition from anywhere between 3000-5000.
These are bmw's. Not porsche, not ferrari. They are fun but they are not a "rich man's car". They are a wannabe rich man's car lol.
I don't know that I agree with that "wannabe" moniker. Higher-end BMW models are definitely aimed at more affluent drivers. The 3-series, OTOH, attracts both the enthusiast driver and those seeking a modern interpretation of the personal luxury car (epitomized by such cars as the Chevrolet Monte Carlo in it's early forms).

That's not to say a certain degree of affluence isn't necessary even in purchasing BMW's entry-level models when new, particularly in the USA. But, lacking the means (or desire) to purchase a more expensive car, while eschewing more pedestrian brands, does not make one a "wannabe".
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Old 01-11-2014, 01:47 PM   #51
mjpgolf1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TSF View Post
BMWs are not expensive. You can easily find a e46 for $3000. Put $500 in misc. stuff if it really needs it and drive the **** out of it.

I've seen plenty with 150k miles in good condition from anywhere between 3000-5000.
These are bmw's. Not porsche, not ferrari. They are fun but they are not a "rich man's car". They are a wannabe rich man's car lol.
A $3000 E46 is going to be trash and will have issues no doubt. Buying a $3000 E46 and only putting $500 into it is a pipe dream. At that point the car isn't going to be performing anywhere near what a BMW should so you may as well save the headaches and buy an old Buick, because that's what the car will ride like. I've said it before and I'll say it again, at the very least it takes $10,000 including the car to buy a decent E46 and get it into good shape. That's probably even low. Ask the guys here like myself that have a properly maintained and excellent performing E46 how much we've spent on our cars to get them into tip top shape. I know I've spent well over $10,000 so far on mine just in refreshing, not including the car itself and I'm sure guys like Dmax, Mango, and a few others here have also spent well over $10,000 to make their cars reliable and performing as an BMW should. I wouldn't want to drive around the block in a $3000 to $5000 E46, let alone driving one everyday.


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Old 01-11-2014, 01:55 PM   #52
TerraPhantm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TSF View Post
BMWs are not expensive. You can easily find a e46 for $3000. Put $500 in misc. stuff if it really needs it and drive the **** out of it.

I've seen plenty with 150k miles in good condition from anywhere between 3000-5000.
These are bmw's. Not porsche, not ferrari. They are fun but they are not a "rich man's car". They are a wannabe rich man's car lol.
They still cost quite a bit to maintain. $500 wouldn't even scratch the surface for a $3k E46.

That is if you actually care about how the car drives (which most of us here do). If you don't... then you might as well just lease a F30 320 and be done with it. Get a hell of a lot more "status", and it's under $300/month - perfect for someone who wants a wannabe rich man's car.
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