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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm just about to pull the trigger on a 98 dakar m3 with under 100k miles, i've talked to tech's about these cars and it seems the fail points are about the same as the e46, but I read these stories online of engine rebuilds, vanos failures..ect. I also see e36 m3s pushing 300k miles, what is the actual deal with these, I know we have a few fanatics here with e36 m3's, any info/tips? Thanks!
 

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S52s are fantastic motors! Engine rebuilds? The only time I can think of that is with moneyshifting or FI. I've never really seen a NA S52 in dire need of a rebuild nor a catastrophic failure.

My old E36 M3 took a beating and never left me stranded. I'm talking drive down to Deal's Gap 5 hours away, drive all day, drive home, and do it again next week.

If you have any specific questions let me know, but it sounds like you already know what's going on with the car.
 

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Cooling (Radiators especially prone to cracking more so than the expansion tank--replace both to be safe) actually, replace ALL cooling components.
Suspension (usual FCABs, shocks will be dead if they are original)
RTAB pockets (Check these for cracks)
Rear shock towers/Front shock towers (Check for cracks or mushrooming--S52 cars less prone but still check)
Oil pump nut (Like the M54, susceptible to undoing itself usually under track conditions)

Other than that, rock solid reliable car.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys, this is good news! I'm getting a PPI done on it tomorrow, I should be bringing it home Monday if all goes well.
 

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I just picked one up...they're fantastic cars but show their age a little in terms of build quality.

Mechanically the same things go wrong on them as do E46s...cooling system, RTAB pockets, rear swaybar tabs if you have aftermarket sways, shocks, FCAB, RTAB, etc. I spent probably close to 5k in mine so far (and mine was CLEAN) in maintenance (full cooling system overhaul, all bushings/balljoints in the rear, coilovers, etc etc)

If you don't mind little things like a sagging glovebox, squeaky steering wheel, cracked window rubber seals, and love to drive, go for it. I love mine even with all the little problems (that are slowly going away as I work on it).

Oh yeah, early 95 cars didn't have the subframe reinforcement.....so keep that in mind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I just picked one up...they're fantastic cars but show their age a little in terms of build quality.

Mechanically the same things go wrong on them as do E46s...cooling system, RTAB pockets, rear swaybar tabs if you have aftermarket sways, shocks, FCAB, RTAB, etc. I spent probably close to 5k in mine so far (and mine was CLEAN) in maintenance (full cooling system overhaul, all bushings/balljoints in the rear, coilovers, etc etc)

If you don't mind little things like a sagging glovebox, squeaky steering wheel, cracked window rubber seals, and love to drive, go for it. I love mine even with all the little problems (that are slowly going away as I work on it).

Oh yeah, early 95 cars didn't have the subframe reinforcement.....so keep that in mind.
Thanks for the info, I just had it looked at and it's very clean, only issue as of now is it needs a new driver side control arm (ball joint is shot), I'll just do both while i'm under there. I'll be bringing it home Monday.
 

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Basically what everyone else says, I've had 3 of them and unless it's been done recently expect to do suspension and coolant work. Other than that, no complaints
 
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