Market Finds: Pick Up a Rare-in-the-US BMW E30 320i Touring

Pick Up a Rare-in-the-US BMW E30 320i Touring

Petrolicious Productions By Petrolicious Productions
April 15, 2014
7 comments

The car: 1988 BMW 320i Touring

Price: $13,950.00 BIN

Location: La Jolla, California

Original Ad: Click here

Do you ever get mad when there’s a cool car that’s being produced, only to find out the manufacturer isn’t going to import it to the United States? Perhaps the company doesn’t think demand will be enough to make up for the cost of the EPA certifying it for American consumption. Or any other number of reasons.

So here’s your chance to buy one of those unicorns: a 1988 BMW 320i Touring. This car, both in 320i and Touring forms, was never available in the United States. The seller brought this wagon from Amsterdam last year, but its 2.0L six has been upgraded to a 2.5 and the auto switched to a 5-speed. It currently has 156k miles on the body (and a little more on the motor), but you wouldn’t know it because it has been “preserved extremely well for its age.” It is certified by California’s Bureau of Automotive Repair, so it blows clean. With a solid, uncracked dash, and new clutch, spark plugs, and windshield, there’s not a lot to worry about, although there are a few tiny rust spots (one on the driver’s side windshield and few on the corner of the hatch) that are typical of Bimmers of this vintage. Paint is original and has no faded clear coat, and there is no indication this Touring has had an accident.

The E30 Bimmers are popular with enthusiasts, with a good supply of parts and a strong network of like-minded folks. Why bother with a new, bloated 3-series when the original should suffice?

If you know of a great, stylish car for sale and would like us to feature it, please let us know!

Petrolicious makes no claim as to the accuracy of the information contained in the car’s original listing, nor will it be held responsible for any errors in said information. If you’re interested in this car, do your homework and research it extensively before you buy.

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Frank B Gabry
Frank B Gabry

My dream car back then, now BMW has lost it luster unless your a tech-savey i-Drive techo. Great car, the rest of the world got to enjoy great cars as North American’s suffered w/large Buicks. BMW’s six was/is the finest engine, I’m sure it can be serviced here in N.A. as the ‘NET’ has been able to reach every corner of the planet. But wait wasn’t the 2.5 six sold here in America? Thank you for this great wonderful car Americans never got.

Matthew Lange
Matthew Lange

While I guess it’s rarity in the US would add some value, this is silly money for a Touring in the condition described with the mileage. Here’s a similar car listed as sold in the UK for £1950 (around $3200) http://www.pistonheads.com/classifieds/used-cars/bmw/e30-3-series-82-94/sold–bmw-e30–sold–full-black-leather—very-clean-car—video/2180990?isexperiment=true no idea what it costs to get it registered in the US but would assume $5000 to ship to States so I can’t believe you wouldn’t be ahead if you really really want an E30 Touring.

Stephen Fitzgerald

Based on research I’m currently doing to import an Evo II, it’s 2k to ship here + 2.5\% purchase price in duties. The only issue with UK cars is the extreme danger of rust. Shop with care!

ASB
ASB

Why is it that in the land of the (supposedly) free, we cannot choose what to drive. If motorcycles are allowed, I do not see how this could possibly be less safe. Oh, and more thing, new euro cars pollute less but we can only import old ones. It has never been about safety-only control. Pathetic government interlopers, stay out of our hobby.

FW Brit
FW Brit

Completely agree – So many cool cars like TVR Chimaera, Lotus Elise Mk1 etc that cannot be imported due to the 25 year rule. At least in Canada it’s only 15 years….

jah1mon
jah1mon

Sharp looking car. Engine parts must be a challenge to find.

Sam Thomas
Sam Thomas

Based on the 2.5 engine swap, parts should be plentiful. We didn’t receive the 2.0 but the 2.5 was sold here in the US.