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Discussion Starter #1
My uncle is looking at a 2000 323Ci. What should he/we know about the car? What should he/we look for or make sure has been done?

Thanks guys.:thumbup:
 

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The early E46s are know to fall victim to subframe failures, which BMW finally admitted was an issue and worked to fix. That's the one that came to mind right away, for more general info on buying an E46, read through the wiki here (specifically section 2.3 "Buying an E46?"): http://www.bimmerfest.com/wiki/index.php/BMW_E46
 

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Discussion Starter #5

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Skip it please....192K miles, automatic, $7K...those three right there are a BIG no. Keep looking and you can find a nice car with less than 140K, manual, same price.

Is automatic a must? If not, definitely grab a manual...save yourself loads of hassles.

Ideally, look for something a little newer. 99-00 models are the first run group and, by default, are just slightly less reliable of cars. So, if your price range is going to put you into something a little more used/higher mileage, your best bet is to try to get a newer one with those miles on it.
 

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Here are a few options I found on the classified section here, all in Michigan. Granted, most are probably sold by now...point being, there are options for better cars at cheaper prices.

2000 BMW 323iT (Touring/wagon) - 5MT - ~100K miles - $7,800
http://forums.bimmerforums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1489261


2000 BMW 323ci - 5MT - Sports package - 174K miles - $4,850
http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=802045&highlight=michigan

I like this one, with work completed and touring:
http://www.bmw2002faq.com/component/option,com_forum/Itemid,50/page,viewtopic/t,360083/
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I was going to tell my uncle to offer $4,500 for the car. In no way do I think it is worth $7k. I know my uncle could go as high as $9k or $10k on the car. He is replacing a gas hog Dodge Ram and he is selling that for $9k.

And I know a manual would actually be more desirable to him. If those are more reliable, that would be great. But he does want a Coupe so no Sedans or Wagons.

Here are a few local ones I found that I thought might be better for him.
http://www.autotrader.com/fyc/vdp.j...s=25&seller_type=b&cardist=115&standard=false
http://www.autotrader.com/fyc/vdp.j...e=b&num_records=25&cardist=215&standard=false
 

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Yeah...$4,500 would be a good price for it, but that said, it's still a 200K mile car that will need attention in ways that might start to be costly/time cosuming...not sure if your uncle is fond of hours of DIYing to keep it roadworthy.

$9K-10K will get you a respectible facelifted model coupe with a manual trans...and that's what I'd aim for. Keep away from xi since RWD will do great in snow with proper winter tires and forgo the extra maintenance parts of the AWD system...less to break, naturally.

Looking at the two autotrader ads, I'd go for the 2000 323ci over the 325....just because it's a manual, but really, I'd suggest looking for a '01 or newer.

If you start seriously considering any older E46 (1999-2002ish) then make sure you check if the subframe was inspected at the dealership. It was free to do so for a while and the 1999-2000 models were most affected by this.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
He CAN do lots of work/maintenance himself. I'm just not sure he wants to. He is VERY big into the Mopar community and has a '68 Challenger drag car with 800hp and a '70 all original Hemi Cuda. That is his scene. He is actually going to MOPAR Nationals this weekend.

I will pitch the idea to him to either offer something like $4,500 for that car OR consider a 2001-2003 325Ci Manual. That seems to be the better route to go for not much more money.
 

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as said the most important thing buying that or any E46 is having the subframe redone. i would much rather have a 2000 yr that had this replaced/fixed than a later one that was told didn't need it.(yet)

the 323Ci is a great car, the early Coupes came with so many more things than the sedans standard, even the next year 325. I'd suggest looking for one with the Premium Package(ZPP) and Sport package(ZSP) and best to stay away from automatics
 
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