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SubDad 04-29-2012 10:28 PM

Sell or fix 325iS, or franken30?
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Hello MaxBimmers.
Long-time lurker needs advice and input.

Short story: I now have two E30s. Probably one too many, if such a thing is possible. One is an 88 325iS - cool car, Zinnabarrot, got all the toys, goes like heck. Rotted 'frame': all the parts that are supposed to be strong aren't. Safetied last year via a guy with a sense of humour.
345,000 km.
Just bought the new one, an imported from Serbia European 86 320i 4-door, 6 cylinder 2 litre. 240,000 km showing, but apparently the odometer doesn't meter odos anymore. 4 door, boring green on green. Not running at the moment while I figure out what appears to be L-Jetronic. Got spark, fuel pressure and compression, injectors not injecting. Engine starts on injected WD40.
Body and interior minty-mint. This car has metal in places where my 325 doesn't have places. Super strong, there really is *no* rust. Interesting little chrome bumpers.
Rear drum brakes, green interior, only RealOEM recognizes parts I need for injection and brakes.
Should I:
1/ Swap the 325iS motor (including Motronic 1.3 and LS diff) into the 320i and part out the leather interior, OBC and uncracked dash etc. ? >>Thus, Sleeper 320i.*smoke*
1b/ As in 1a, and sell a rolling 325 chassis sans motor?
2/ Sell the 320 and use the money to get more welding done on the 325iS, beyond the floor and rear shock tower that I had done last year?
3/ Sell the 325iS as is, sadly wave goodbye to a very cool but dangerously weak car?:(

Intended use is to have a fun to drive, semi-to-mostly reliable weekend car.

All opinions considered, please advise.


cormier 04-29-2012 10:37 PM

I like the euro, and a crappy body will always haunt you....

I would suggest:

Getting the 320 running on its own motor or a swap of any sort


Selling both and getting one that you like the looks of AND is in good shape

SubDad 04-29-2012 11:15 PM

"and a crappy body will always haunt you"
There really is a world of truth in that, thanks Cormier.
That's a vote for the Staid Strong Mint*, anyone for the Red?

I'll get the 320 running on its own motor even if I have to change the battery in my multimeter.

*It's actually Planetengraun Metallic, if you'll pardon my spelling.


edited for "it's". Sigh.

DIY 04-30-2012 10:19 AM

Go project "mean green"
Swap the motor, brakes, wheels, lower valence, add go fast parts.....but keep the interior :)

Shell be a beauty when she's done

The Twin 04-30-2012 11:33 AM


also...dibs on some of the parts from the 88 red:P when you part it!
local Ottawa here!

everlast 04-30-2012 11:47 AM

Option 1.

SubDad 04-30-2012 01:47 PM

Thanks for the input, guys.

That green is starting to grow on me, so to speak.

Say very quietly... the green cloth seats are actually more comfortable that the fancy black leather iS ones. (Shhhh...)

Drove the iS yesterday for the first time this year. It started right up and runs strong. It's really quick even though the shifter is loose and finding the right gear is more a matter of luck than skill. I was leaning towards keeping it and fixing it some more but then it leaked gas and steering fluid all over my driveway. And it's going to rain tonight so that means the carpets are going to get wet again, since I can't out a gas leak in the garage.

And that ABS system is driving me buggy.*mumble*

Definitely leaning Green.
I'll decide if I want to swap engines after I drive the 320 with the current engine.
"You can have more fun driving a slow car fast than driving a fast car slowly."

everlast 04-30-2012 01:50 PM

Green e30's can be hawt.

Your little chrome bumpers are very desirable euro bumpers. I personally think they're the best bumper for the e30 actually!

craz azn 04-30-2012 02:22 PM

Sell me that euro 320 :D

BimmerBoys 04-30-2012 02:49 PM

Go green euro awesomenessness! Most of us spend e30 money making our e30s look like euro cars, you can spend a few bucks and bring this bad boy back to life!

Strip and sell the red cars parts keep what you like from it.

Swap an m/s52 into it and you'll be in love!

lost 04-30-2012 08:28 PM

I like the green euro

BmW1819 04-30-2012 08:37 PM

Go green or sell it to me lol

SubDad 04-30-2012 08:57 PM

The Green it is!
OK, that's clear. Thanks for your input, the unanimity of your responses really clarified my (what passes for) thinking.

The Green One's a keeper. I'll get it running and decide if it needs more power. I guess I'll have to join the lepers in the 4-door thread, too.

I'll drive the red one until the Green One is ready, then depending on the power question I'll sell it whole or as a rolling chassis.

Now, who wants to play L-Jetronic?
Anybody got a set of trailing arms with disc brakes attached?


Proud owner of a Green, Four Door E30 *par-t*

craz azn 04-30-2012 09:25 PM

I've got disc brake trailing arms, but its a bit of a trek for you...

SubDad 04-30-2012 09:38 PM

I'll be passing that way in July, if you still have them then. It seems a lot of E30 guys are going 5-bolt, so I'm sure more 4-bolt setups will surface.
First things first though. I want to hear that little engine start, then get a safety. After that, I can start buying stuff without worrying that I'm buying pretty stuff for a car that's about to break in half.

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