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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Bonjour from Montreal !

This is now my e46 coupé, a pretty well maintained 325 CI with a roaring 2.5 M54 engine. Examined it, checks out, nice suspension firm feel, engine purrs and roars, and on the whole the interior is well kept with no major tears except I noticed one today on the side bolster. Not bad though for a 2001. The rust is not major so far, just what you see up front here on the driver's door and front quarter panel. It has about 215 000 kms (150 000 miles ?).

No squeaks. The previous owner assured me the bushings were changed, as well as the wheel bearings, and I was happy to find a 2019 Behr expansion tank in it with decent tubes. But it leaks a bit of refrigerant at the expansion tank all the same, and I rather suspect that there ought to be a seal or gasket in the cap of that tank which I think is missing. Pretty silly, but I'll take a pic to make sure. Sure enough, I added some coolant, which is green and I'd rather see OEM in there, so I'll flush it and see about the cap.

The previous owner did not drive it much, so the battery was weak and I had to boost it a couple of times on the day we did the registration exchange, and after that was all done, I drove it harder to feed the battery, for more prolonged times, and so far the car has started on its own battery power. Still, I already had a portable battery that is now at the ready in the trunk should I require it. I may buy a battery charger as well, but first I should check how old the battery really is. It looked kind of recent when we jumped it from the back.

Another tiny issue was the front right turn signal not working, but it did at times. So the bulb was not blown, I thought, something else was awry. Poking or moving wire did nothing, except one time.

Well, enough faffing around, I pulled out the bulb. The filament was fine though, as I correctly assessed, but its center terminal was charred a bit, and the center metal contact tab in the socket it goes into was a weird shape, like it fused or blew. It was still a nice metal color as it should. I should have taken a pic. Anyhow, put a fresh bulb in, checked conductivity before putting it back into the car, and low and behold, I have a working flasher. Probably should change the socket, but works for now.

Car Wheel Automotive parking light Tire Land vehicle


Another issue I'll get to is the right wiper. It works, though the wiper skips, which gave me a hint. And once I raised the right arm to clean the windshield when I gased her up... wibble, wobble, just a bit, the arm needs a fixing.

Other than that, it's a blast to drive. The stock stereo system sounds really good, which I did not expect. What must the Harmon Kardon be like? No air con, it's empty, so I ought to have it filled up for the sake of preserving its functionnality, if it still works.

I might have it painted at some point, or DIY. I'd at least like to fix the rust so it doesn't get much worse like ruining the door.

It's a beautiful dream for me that is now come true. I used to have an e34 525i that I had kept for 9 years and enjoyed it a lot. This one is more nimble and more to my taste, though e30 and e90 are up my alley as well, as I really like coupes. Even considered 128i, but this e46 is more in my budget, includes summer and winter tires, and the previous owner really loved it too, which is a good sign.

I look forward to hanging about the forums among other passionate e46 owners.
 

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1980 733i, 2006 m3
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Welcome!
Greta intro, and what a fabulous color. Going to keep it if you respray?
I'll second having the battery load tested. Some odd things happen when the battery is low. It seems like everything is controlled by a computer of some sorts in these rides.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Welcome!
Greta intro, and what a fabulous color. Going to keep it if you respray?
I'll second having the battery load tested. Some odd things happen when the battery is low. It seems like everything is controlled by a computer of some sorts in these rides.
I'll see about a respray, maybe first stabilise the rust. But for know, I'm getting to know the car.
 

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2006 BMW M3 Competition MT
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Hey! I'm glad you've found a car you're happy with. Those are some interesting wheels! I've been a long time e46 owner. I've had mine for about 7 years, and it is also a 325i! It currently has 167k miles and drives like new!

I suggest you install a new battery (unless by now you've determined yours runs well); eliminate it as a variable for future electrical issues. Ensure the contacts are clean and tight. Looseness or weak battery can cause several issues such as ABS lights turning on for no apparent reason and car turning off suddenly at stops. Make sure the tires are up for the snow as they seem a bit old from the picture. If you are looking for a good all-season tire, I suggest Conti Extreme Contact DWS 06. I've taken my RWD e46 up the mountain for snow trips on these with no issues. They are also tremendously sporty tires given their snow performance and just enough for the M54 power w/ open diff (no need for PS4). Otherwise, just slap on some used decent winters (perhaps Hankook iPike series if lucky). Also, in case you didn't know, FCP Euro is your best friend! Check out 50s Kid on Youtube. Install INPA and BMW Scanner on your laptop and get a K-dcan cable from ebay!

These forums are a tremendous resource for owning an M54 car. I hope the car brings as much cheer as it has brought me.

Best of Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for the tips! I decided to see for a bit if the battery holds up. I bought a charger and fully charged it and gave it a 'repair' cycle. I have a small;,new lithium battery pack that ought to be able to boost (they say 600 Amps). I'll risk it because the recharging went well and was not too long. It was, I am betting, just due for a full refill. It started so well when I put it back in. And since I don' t really need the car, I can afford to take some risks. I'll keep to small trips, it's just starting that was an issue, so nothing mechanical and no other electrical quirks came up, so I'm pretty confident so far that the battery can do well. I just wish I had its manufacturing date or install date.

Thanks for mentioning the scanner stuff, I do want to get into that. I'm also itching for a Bentley manual.

The treads on the tires are good, but as winter goes on, I will see about them. Maybe the hubcaps and the dirtiness make them seem old? But I ought to look at the dates on the tires indeed. Good point there too, but by law I must have full winter tires until March.

I did come across 50s Kid, I'll look into FCP Euro too then! Sreten (I forget his channel name) is also fun to watch.

Cheers!
 
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