Photo: Craigslist
Nice Price Or Crack PipeIs this used car a good deal? You decide!

The seller of today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Bimmer gives us plenty of shots of its reasonably unblemished driver’s side, but only one of its less-pretty curb face. Let’s see if that, and its high miles, overcome a stick shift and a potentially low price.

Well, I was shocked—shocked, I tell you—by the 55 percent Crack Pipe loss suffered by last Friday’s 2001 Lexus LX470. That big SUV was little more than a Toyota Land Cruiser with good elocution, and those generally command some bank. I’m just glad I didn’t post one of the ones asking half again as much.


Last Friday’s Lexus had, to put it in technical terms, a butt-load of miles. The odd had rolled up to the far side of 270K to be exact. That can scare off a lot of prospective buyers since most of us are of the mind that the more miles a car goes, the fewer miles that will be left. In the case of that LX470 it’s probably a moot point since the cars have a pretty good reputation for racking up road. What happens however, when you come across a car without such bragging rights but with similarly high miles? Further, what if that car, and/or truck is something still worth considering?

Well, you needn’t ponder that as a hypothetical any longer since we have before us today a 1991 BMW 535i with 230,000 miles and a five-speed stick. Now, if you’re like me, when you think of BMW the first thing that pops into mind is a silky smooth and torquey inline six. Yes, the company makes a ton of other configurations, many with more to offer when stepping up to the plate, but it’s the straight six that made the company’s name here in the States.


In the case of this E34 535i that six is a M30B35. That’s a 3430cc, SOHC unit featuring an iron block with an aluminum head. The engineers at BMW were able to coax 208 horsepower out of it with Bosch L-Jetronic fuel injection, and meet U.S. smog rules. Behind that sits a fairly rare but eminently desirable Getrag 260 five-speed.

This one also comes with the aforementioned 230K on the clock. But that’s okay since the seller says he drove it from Idaho to Texas without a hitch. I guess that means he didn’t trailer anything down there since without a hitch there wouldn’t have been any place to hook one up. What? Why are you all groaning?


The ad notes that the car doesn’t burn or leak oil, and that the heater valve has recently been replaced so it probably doesn’t drip coolant either. It’s said to pull like a freight train once you get it about 3,000 revs and to have working sunroof and windows all the way around.


The interior comes across as you might expect, with a seemingly solid dash but some tearing and crazing on the driver’s seat squab. The back seats seem okay and the headliner looks to be still headlining.


Outside things are okay on one side, and less so on the other. That’s reflected in the number of pics the seller provides in his ad for the relatively clean driver’s side, versus the one pic from down the driveway he gives of the scraped up and clear coat denuding passenger side. As it sits, the car has a cool kind of Phantom of the Opera vibe, if you’re into such things. The wheels are aftermarket and look a good bit like Borbets, but there isn’t a close enough shot to confirm that. This car does come from an age when 15-inch wheels and 60-series tires looked just fine.


After reading all that you might think that the car’s modest $1,800 asking price is just fine too. Alternatively, you might add up all the car’s demerits—mileage, scratch city bodywork and that tear in the seat—and think that even that is too much.

What’s your take on this mile-maker 535i and that $1,800 asking? Does that seem a fair deal for the car as it’s presented? Or, are the miles too high for even that low a price?


You decide!


Dallas, TX Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

H/T to glemon for the hookup!

Help me out with NPOCP. Hit me up at and send me a fixed-price tip. Remember to include your Kinja handle.

Rob Emslie is a contributing writer for Jalopnik. He has too many cars, and not enough time to work on them all.

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