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The ultimate e46 inspection checklist (attached)

having just bought another e46 to 'complete the fleet'... I updated the metrics I use.

Here are the checks I do shared with you all. It is quick to print this out and use it to score the car as you go around, but it also gives a comprehensive view of the market value.

Of course, what really happens when I tabulate the repair costs is I see just how much money I am going to lose on the car I already bought! :excited::ben::thumbsup::bow:
 

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Thanks for sharing!
 

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Exceptional post. I've printed out your checklist in prep for my trip tomorrow to look at a 2002 330i with 65,000 miles. Basically one owner. It's a January 2002 build according to RealOEM.

I'm concerned about the subframe cracking! Never seen that. It's a dealership and they seem on the level. Owned by a salesman there. I'm also a bit worried about the coolant system, so I'll take extra care checking that out. It's so low mileage that I had to take a look. And I'd really like a 330i. Any other thoughts or cautions? Thanks very much. Todd
 

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Discussion Starter #184
Todd, I would consider a complete coolant system change even if it looks good. Not because of the miles, but more because of the age. The plastics can deteriorate after time. Post up some pictures if you end up getting it.
 

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Hey all, I just got my second E46 330i sedan. My first was a 2004 zhp that I bought with 94,000 miles on it in 2015 for 6k. It was a zhp 6-speed manual. I drove it for just under 20,000 miles as a second car. It had the usual A-Pillar and headliner issues. Horn was dying, parking brake was wearing out, and I had to do the cooking system refresh on it. But it was pretty rock solid for the 2.5 years of ownership until I got the head gasket leak and it was going to need suspension refresh. So at 115k miles I sold it for 8k to a zhp lover. Then I daily drove a 2017 340i manual lease (there was some crossover in ownership). Today I turned that lease in and saw that the dealer had taken a 2004 330i sport and premium package orient Blue With gray leather inside in on trade. The car had 55,000 miles, was bought and serviced at the same dealer that took it in on trade and was probably washed more often than driven. It seems in amazing shape and the only cosmetic issue is the beginning of the a-pillar sag. The only other issue mechanically is the moonroof shade seems to be off track and only retracts and goes forward with the glass.

The car had rotors brakes and spark plugs done at 52,000 miles last year. The man then traded it because he said he was too old for such a small car and upgraded to an SUV. Anyway, I couldn***8217;t help myself and I bought it for 8500 bucks and bmw waived my disposition lease fee and gave me $250.00 credit for my under miles lease turn in.

Anyway, I just was wondering whether you guys think I should do any preventative maintenance on the car or just wait for the normal service intervals. As far as I can tell there is no leaking as of yet from the cooling system, but that would be my first place to look if I was going to do something preventative. Also, I***8217;m having a hip replacement in a month, so it***8217;s an automatic transmission. I***8217;ve never had one before from bmw and thought I would ask if 55,000 miles is close to any transmission service or anything. Anyway, super happy to be back in an E46. Let me know your thoughts team.
 

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Discussion Starter #187
The first thing I tell people is to do a Cooling System replacement. That will give you another 60k miles or more. Can you post some pictures?
 

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The first thing I tell people is to do a Cooling System replacement. That will give you another 60k miles or more. Can you post some pictures?
Well before taking possession I found out that it has a brand new expansion tank, thermostat and radiator hoses. So, woot woot. Ok try and post pictures.
 

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Discussion Starter #189
Well before taking possession I found out that it has a brand new expansion tank, thermostat and radiator hoses. So, woot woot. Ok try and post pictures.
Nice, one of my favorite colors for the E46.
 

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Welcome mwm1166. Did the dealer disclose that the car is upside down!? Nice ride!

G.A.S. CCV and DISA rebuild. Add them to your list (no rush)!
 

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Thanks KJ I got lucky 3 1/2 years ago, 1'st BMW, thrill still there! Maint cost "price of admission". She's a joy to work on.
 

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EDIT: The post I responded to is gone... :)

Random fun fact of the day? I have a feeling there are no plans for any more e46s, full stop... lol... Too bad as it is a d-mn good looking car! Are you a person or a bot of some sort? Based on you other posts I think you are real... I managed to make it this far without actually knowing (or wondering) what the ´e´stood for, so thanks for that!
 

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You guys are talking about if there are plans on some futuristic e46 while for the past 15 years BMW has been completely changing the course.
The whole automotive industry has gone towards completely different concepts in terms of look and the engines. THERE IS NO MORE E46 M CARS EVER.
The 17 year old e46 you owe with 250k moles on it might be actually more reliable than what some premium automobiles are like today.
I am questioning owning another new like BMW at this point knowing the facts the engine entrusts are bringing to me now about the post e46 product. They take these engines a part they know the stuff.

Everything that BMW makes today and other brands like Audi or Lexus produces overachieving amount of horse power at engines that are built with less lifetime resource than that old 323i.
100-150k miles is the new norm ODO death certificate for these new high performance cars that sell for 60k.
The shortened pistons, thin cylinders, stupid chain tentioner desigs etc.
That's it guys

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
 

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You guys are talking about if there are plans on some futuristic e46 while for the past 15 years BMW has been completely changing the course.
The whole automotive industry has gone towards completely different concepts in terms of look and the engines. THERE IS NO MORE E46 M CARS EVER.
The 17 year old e46 you owe with 250k mo
Miles on it might be actually more reliable than what some premium automobiles are like today.
I am questioning owning another new like BMW at this point knowing the facts the engine entrusts are bringing to me now about the post e46 product. They take these engines a part they know the stuff.

Everything that BMW makes today and other brands like Audi or Lexus produces overachieving amount of horse power at engines that are built with less lifetime resource than that old 323i.
100-150k miles is the new norm ODO death certificate for these new high performance cars that sell for 60k.
The shortened pistons, thin cylinders, stupid chain tentioner desigs etc.
That's it guys

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
 

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Some good information here!
Just picked up a project 330!
 
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