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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 10-06-2004, 01:03 PM   #1
Qwietstorm
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Underhood paint and body paint

I am looking to buy a used 3 series VERY soon and sent an inquiry to a guy up in PA. The pics he had on autotrader were of a silver 323ci but it looked white under the hood (I can post the link if anyone wants to see.) I asked him about it and he said "No, the car has never been in an accident.
I can understand your concern for the color difference you see under the
hood. The manufacturers paint the inside of a panel a flat color
without any clear coat. When a flash is used to take a picture, this
comes out very pale. Hence, this produces the white you see under the
hood." So I figured I"m come to you guys since this is where all the experience is and find out if this is true.
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Old 10-06-2004, 01:38 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qwietstorm
I am looking to buy a used 3 series VERY soon and sent an inquiry to a guy up in PA. The pics he had on autotrader were of a silver 323ci but it looked white under the hood (I can post the link if anyone wants to see.) I asked him about it and he said "No, the car has never been in an accident.
I can understand your concern for the color difference you see under the
hood. The manufacturers paint the inside of a panel a flat color
without any clear coat. When a flash is used to take a picture, this
comes out very pale. Hence, this produces the white you see under the
hood." So I figured I"m come to you guys since this is where all the experience is and find out if this is true.
I don't know how you will be able to see this, maybe he can take a picture. Under the hood on the right strut tower, if you are facing the car, there will be a sticker that says the paint color of the car. I have steel gray, it is written in German, so it actually says Sthal Grau or something like that.

What he says is true. The car is not fully painted under hood ect.... mine almost looks like primer.

Steve
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Old 10-06-2004, 09:34 PM   #3
325 & 55
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This is a pic of the "Paint Code" sticker as mentioned above:
(note that it is still easy to see that my body color is "Steel Blue" under the hood)
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Old 10-06-2004, 10:13 PM   #4
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yes hwta he says is true under the hood and inside the body pannels and such are all a very dull paint like primer/ mine is almost white
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Old 10-07-2004, 09:54 AM   #5
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Alrigt. Thanks guys, I really appreciate it. I didn't want to take a chance driving all the way up there to look at the car and its been in an accident or something like that. Can't be too careful.
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Old 06-06-2011, 10:41 PM   #6
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Old post I know, but I found this using the search because I am doing the same. I am picking up an 05 M3 in silver and it was white under the hood. I asked the salesman if it had been painted, and he said that's how they all are. I didn't really believe him, but I had already seen the carfax that was clear as a bell. Glad I found this makes me feel better.
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Old 06-06-2011, 10:47 PM   #7
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holy batbumps! thread bump from 2004?!?!?!
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Old 06-06-2011, 11:05 PM   #8
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yeah it's old, but I hate asking a question on a forum and having 20 people telling me to use the search. So I did and found what I needed from 04. It's old news, but worked for me.
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Old 06-06-2011, 11:14 PM   #9
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Good job on using the search button
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Old 06-07-2011, 11:07 AM   #10
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You should be worried if you are looking under the hood and the paint matches.

also, check the tops of the fenders. Should be matte paint on them too like in the photo below. If they are clearcoated, the car has had paintwork and possibly was in an accident.

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Last edited by iansanderson; 06-07-2011 at 11:09 AM.
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Old 06-07-2011, 11:22 AM   #11
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My car is silver and under the hood it looks white.
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Old 06-07-2011, 11:48 AM   #12
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Yup, it's gonna be white. After I cleaned the underside of the hood it was even more white than how you see it below.

If you ever take the lining off the trunk, it's gonna look the same way, same as the inside of the doors.

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Old 06-07-2011, 12:58 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Andy_pha View Post
yeah it's old, but I hate asking a question on a forum and having 20 people telling me to use the search. So I did and found what I needed from 04. It's old news, but worked for me.
good, job. you need to invite Kpeng in here and show him that not all noobs are "class of XXXX "
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Good job on using the search button
yup! Andy_pha for class of 2011 president....
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Old 06-07-2011, 09:49 PM   #14
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haha thanks guys I spend a lot of time on forums and try to conduct myself as such. Thanks for the replies. I went to pick it up tonight at the dealer and the freaking power was out, I waited for 3 hours just shooting the bull with the sales guy hoping the power would come back on and we could make the deal. Unfortunately I had to go home and will try again tomorrow afternoon. Hope it's not fate trying to tell me to stay away from the car.
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