E46 BMW Social Directory E46 FAQ 3-Series Discussion Forums BMW Photo Gallery BMW 3-Series Technical Information E46 Fanatics - The Ultimate BMW Resource BMW Vendors General E46 Forum The Tire Rack's Tire Wheel Forum Forced Induction Forum The Off-Topic The E46 BMW Showroom For Sale, For Trade or Wanting to Buy

Welcome to the E46Fanatics forums. E46Fanatics is the premiere website for BMW 3 series owners around the world with interactive forums, a geographical enthusiast directory, photo galleries, and technical information for BMW enthusiasts.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   E46Fanatics > Other BMW Models > General BMW Model Discussion

General BMW Model Discussion
All non E46 BMW model questions in here. Look below for E36, E90 and F30 specific forum. For additional model specific forums check out bimmerfest.com!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 12-30-2009, 10:34 AM   #1
jbfrancis3
Formerly Snox400
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 456
My Ride: 1999 323i
Advice Needed! - Purchasing a MINI COOPER

Members familiar with the Mini offering, please chime in, thanks!

I'm looking to purchase a used Mini Cooper for the following purposes and with the following objectives:
-Daily driver
-Find most reliable year for standard Mini (no S-version or JCW)
-No performance upgrades will be done
-Prefer manual transmission
-$10,000 budget

I've searched around on the forums and have only come up with this:
http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...highlight=mini

I've searched for Mini forums and found a great site, with the following specific article:
http://www.northamericanmotoring.com...mini-help.html

I'm still wondering about the following, please consider:

1) Can someone give me rundown on the generations and designations of the modern mini? (ie R53) Or direct me to a good location?

2) What year(s) tended to be some of the better-built cars. My initial searching has revealed to avoid the early 01-03 models, correct? I cannot stress enough that I'm looking for a known trouble-free year.

3) Maintenance will be performed by a shop, not DIY. What are thoughts on going the dealer route, as in a CPO car, versus purchasing independently with or without a remaining factory warranty.

4) Need to locate quality listings. I know Ebay can be great as well as I disaster (heck, I recently had a great first buying experience purchasing a 4.8is). A dealer is an option, albeit more expensive one. Forums might have some quality cars, though are there any deals to be had? What else am I overlooking?

5) How do these cars wear, mileage-wise? Personally, I would be comfortable purchasing an E46 with 60,000 miles as an arbitrary number, but not much more. Can I use the same logic on the Mini brand?


That should keep me busy for now, an comments/insight would be much appreciated! Thank you
__________________
jbfrancis3
jbfrancis3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Ads by Google

Guests, get your FREE E46Fanatics.com membership to remove this ad.
Old 12-30-2009, 01:09 PM   #2
jbfrancis3
Formerly Snox400
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 456
My Ride: 1999 323i
Update: Found info on #1 above:

"The 1st Generation"
R50: 2001-2006 Mini Cooper
R52: 2002-2006 Mini Cooper Convertible
R53: 2002-2006 Mini Cooper S

"The 2nd Generation"
R55: Mini Cooper Clubman (an extended length version)
R56: 2007-current Mini Cooper & Mini Cooper S
R57: 2007-current Mini Cooper Convertible & Mini Cooper S Convertible



Can some knowledgeable members comment on the others??? Thanks!
__________________
jbfrancis3
jbfrancis3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2010, 10:58 AM   #3
MLZ225
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Montreal
Posts: 873
My Ride: Land Cruiser
Avoid BMW dealer at all costs.
Girlfriend drives one, they tried to charge her $1500 for a MINOR door ding.
Parts are pretty expensive too
MLZ225 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2010, 11:09 AM   #4
Chris-TK
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Sacramento
Posts: 16,309
My Ride: Mk VI GTI
Mini no S
__________________
K.
Chris-TK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2010, 02:20 PM   #5
330ciandr6
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: .
Posts: 6,605
My Ride: .
Send a message via AIM to 330ciandr6 Send a message via Yahoo to 330ciandr6
you must have an S. they are uber fun.

most problems we see up here are: oil pan gasket, NUMEROUS thermostats replaced, every once in a while a water pump, sometimes valve cover gasket. honestly there aren't too many problems with them.
__________________
Have a oil or coolant leak? Click here!:http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...732&highlight=
ABS/DSC/Brake/Airbag light on?? Click here!:http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...648&highlight=
330ciandr6 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-06-2010, 10:13 AM   #6
jbfrancis3
Formerly Snox400
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 456
My Ride: 1999 323i
^ Thanks for the responses so far!

Dealer is most certainly being avoided. Private party is the preferred route with ALL services records.

No S, I know . Its a vehicle for my girlfriend and low maintenance/low cost is a must. It would also put any vehicle out of her budget range.

Currently looking at 2003-2005 models, and avoiding the 2001-2002. Anyone else have comments on years with respect to build quality and problematic areas? That was helpful listing the failed parts by the way 330ciandr6

Also, I'm struggling with the mileage debate. I specified less than 100,000 while looking for the best car possible in order to attempt to avoid serious repairs. Now I'm starting to think this is unrealistic. A common rationale for buying a low-cost, higher mileage car is that you're deferring sinking a lot of money into the initial cost, but setting aside plenty of funds for future maintenance and repairs. Right now, I'm looking for a lower cost car ('03-'05 R50) with 80,XXX but would have a very thin margin for any work on the car in the future. Am I just setting myself up for headaches in the future?
__________________
jbfrancis3

Last edited by jbfrancis3; 01-06-2010 at 10:15 AM.
jbfrancis3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Censor is ON





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:25 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
(c) 1999 - 2011 performanceIX Inc - privacy policy - terms of use