eBay Find of the Week: 1992 BMW 318i convertible
Common advice in the car world is always buy the good car, never buy the cheap car. That’s because the cheap car almost always ends up more expensive. Even the smallest fixes turn into a litany of projects that will bleed the fattest wallet through many tiny cuts. That said, the cheap car is often too tempting to resist.
This 1992 BMW 318i convertible on eBay is a lesson in the better decision of paying a little extra for a lot less work and a lot less money over time. The E30-generation BMW 3 Series is heralded as one of the greatest cars ever made. And while the convertible version gets short shrift from enthusiasts for its period-correct lack of chassis stiffness, it’s worth slightly more according to the Hagerty Valuation Tool.
From the photos, this 318i appears to be incredibly clean and in excellent condition. It’s the kind of summer-only garage-kept gem you get from northern climates—in this case Vancouver Island, British Columbia. Importing into the U.S. should be relatively straightforward given the car’s 25-year age, which makes it exempt from DOT and EPA import restrictions.
The listing states a new cloth top has been installed along with some other mechanical updates. What’s not written are things you don’t need to deal with, like worn seats or broken trim that would lower the price, but not as much as the cost of a perfect repair. Aside from tires showing dry-rot cracks (which should be replaced before driving) and a few minor scuffs, this Bimmer looks ready to roll straight into the nearest Cars and Coffee.
The Buy It Now price of $12,500 is between #3 and #2 condition values in the Hagerty Valuation Tool, which seems appropriate given the lower mileage and clean photos. 3 Series prices from this generation have been flat over the last five years, which is all the more reason to get one that won’t throw any extra bills your way.