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Discussion Starter #1
Runners up:

88 M5 (hard to find under 10K)
E30 M3 (hard to find under 10K)
Corrado

discuss.
 

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All four of those will run you down to the ground with maintenance costs.

I'm personally in love w/ E30 M3s though, so I'd get that. :p
 

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Well, I really like the 944 (esp the 951). They def are cool cars, and they work on the track. You could even get a 944 w/ decent mileage for around $5k. I wouldn't worry so much about the cost of merely buying the car though. I'd worry about the cost of parts, reliability, and maybe insurance premiums. Ditto for the M3 and M5. I'd love to own a E30 M3 for a DD if I was richer though.

Given the options, I'd say the Corrado would prob be the most practicle and easy to maint. car.
 

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Personally E30 is my favorite BMW ever....I love those things better then new ones. Im sure it would outhandle the currant M3 also....

Its also the only BMW ever made with 50/50 weight distribution.....;)....I think...

For that money you could get a used A4 1.8T Q......

Old M5s....are great, but they are not the most reliable....and much more to fix then M3s.....

In real life.....Corrado. I think Corrado are awesome cars, I see people bitch about the reliability all the time.....Ive had a friend with one for many years..with no problems at all, so just like any car....it s luck

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Finding E30 M3 parts is like treasure hunting. Or you just gotta give up your first born child. The 944 parts availability is actually quite good...but the maintenance schedule is a lot to swallow. Ever want to replace your timing belt (I think 30k is regular schedule?)? 10 hours labor. No ifs, ands, or buts. And you better do your water pump while you're at it, unless you wanna shell out another $1k for labor. Clutch slipping? Add another 10 hours. :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I just did a Progressive online quote (I love their site), and to replace my POS 86 E30 (325i) with an 86 944 (adding collision) the 6 month premium only $123 more.

I'm ok with Maintenance. That's all luck, like someone said.

Luke.
 

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And you can't do it yourself without a $300 tool. 10 hours for a clutch? Hm, book time is 20 hours on the later cars, 25 hours on the earlier ones. Old German cars do not make good daily drivers, really, you're not the first to have tried. :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I test drove an old 88 5 series this weekend that someone had transplanted a Euro M6 drivetrain into and slightly modified (lowered, wheels, suspension) and wasn't really impressed. The motor is gorgeous!! but it didn't feel as quick as I thought it should. ...plus the body and interior were not pretty.

Luke.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Define early/late Mac, and why SO many hours??

My old E30 hasn't been too big a pain in the ass, but you're a 944 fan, right?, and you're telling me to stay away, so humm...

Luke.
 

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stealthx32 said:
Finding E30 M3 parts is like treasure hunting. Or you just gotta give up your first born child. The 944 parts availability is actually quite good...but the maintenance schedule is a lot to swallow. Ever want to replace your timing belt (I think 30k is regular schedule?)? 10 hours labor. No ifs, ands, or buts. And you better do your water pump while you're at it, unless you wanna shell out another $1k for labor. Clutch slipping? Add another 10 hours. :wink:
Thats with any car.....and it helps when you have relitives in Europe as far as parts go.

I would go for E30 M3 anyday.....and I will one day....and it will be turbocharged;)

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The best description I've seen for the clutch replacement procedure on these cars is "disassemble car. Replace clutch. Reassemble car." You have to remove virtually everything mechanical including dropping the tranny (which isn't anywhere near the clutch of course), significant parts of the motor, like the starter, fuel rail/injectors, intake manifold, exhaust system of course. 87+ turbos don't require pulling the intake manifold. Fun job, the one I had could have used it but I never got around to it. It was on it's second clutch and needed it's third at 120k miles. The friction material lasts forever but a defect causes the clutches to fail mechanically relatively frequently (50-60k miles). I'm a big 944 fan but the ones that have survived this long should live out the rest of their years where they were meant to be.. on the racetrack. My boss just bought one to go club racing with and is having a blast.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Ehh... _uck it. I see plenty of people driving them everyday who look they can't afford the maintenance. :beer:

Luke.
 

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Passat maintenance actually isn't too bad (at least not until you mod and race the crap out of it). Apart from coilpacks, there's really no costly repairs or stuff that needs to be fixed. The 1.8t is an extremely bulletproof motor for one. I will say that owning a VW isn't a pleasant exp if you don't have a good mechanic, and/or you don't have decent auto-repair skills.

Otherwise, it's never cheap the thing with any car that's maint intensive, heavily modded, and/or is raced. If you're doing a project, that's cool. Otherwise, if it's your only car and DD, it's better to be a lot more conservative. TBH- for $10k (which is a hell of a lot of $$$ imo), I'd get a cheap, reliable, yet fun to drive Civic as a DD, and also the 944/m3/corrado as a fun car. I got a CRX, a '92 civic hatch, and a '92 miata pretty much for $10k, and I'm very happy with what I got. Unfortunately, I have trouble keeping all my cars stock though :p
 

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$10k will also buy you a beatup old Impreza and the drivetrain out of a new STI, FWIW :) There really are plenty of cheap reliable driver's cars out there. The nice thing about older Japanese cars is the parts and labor are just absurdly cheap. They just don't quite make it on the "sexiest, classiest" list. But when you see a car on that list that performs extremely well, but can be purchased for dirt cheap, you should be able to figure out why..
 

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S14 240SX w/ a RB25DET (2.5L turbo - Skyline power!), or the ever popular SR20DET (powers everything that Nissan ever built :p ). And get a S15 Silvia front end conversion while you're at it. :)

 

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Passat maintenance actually isn't too bad (at least not until you mod and race the crap out of it). Apart from coilpacks, there's really no costly repairs or stuff that needs to be fixed. The 1.8t is an extremely bulletproof motor for one. I will say that owning a VW isn't a pleasant exp if you don't have a good mechanic, and/or you don't have decent auto-repair skills
The problem with the Passat is usually not in the 1.8T or VR6 engines, both of which are very well made. EVERYTHING else seems to be the problem. I just had to replace control arms and tie rods, plus a bunch of other regular 40K mile stuff, and the bill came out to be $2500. Absolutly nothing's had to be done on the motor, it's been mainly the suspension that made my maintenance bad.

And I think you're overrating the B5 reliability, it seems like people are always having new, weird problems. There are also people with 100K miles with no problems, so I think people before me have summed up B5 reliability as "hit or miss"
 
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