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

I'm going to say three words, and many of you will immediately swoon upon hearing them. Are you ready? Diesel, E30, Touring. Now that you've recovered, check out today's Nice Price or Crack Pipe 1989 324TD and decide if its price is also swoon-worthy.

What is it they say, close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades? Well, that's certainly true considering yesterday's Subie-powered '75 914 home brew which ended up on the wrong side of close with a 52% Crack Pipe loss.

You know I probably should have mentioned that the Subaru transmission in its present configuration at the back of that Porsche offers a rear-facing power take-off. That could make the car useful on the farm or at remote construction sites. Oh well, live and learn.

Speaking of living, how can you go on knowing that a car such as this 1989 BMW 324TD exists and it isn't in your possession? I mean, is this Jalopnik nirvana or what? It's an E30 Touring with a turbo diesel engine, 5-speed Getrag, and a for sale sign in its window.


Well, a bit about that for sale sign. Yes, I know this eBay auction has ended. The thing of it is though, the car apparently didn't sell and so I'll bet you could contact the seller and slip 'em the asking just as on the down low as you please and then you'd be the proud owner of this 88,000 mile boxy beauty. Come to papa!

Of course seeing as it's now old enough to qualify for the Fed's get out of jail free card (and to rent itself!) this oil-burning Bimmer may not even need to marry to get to stay stateside.


Now, even if you do have to do some work to make it so, making the engine too legit to quit may not be all that tough as this mill - the M21, 2,443-cc six was once sold here in the 524td. It was also made available in Lincoln's Continental and Mark VII, and when those failed to sell in any number Ford sold the engines they bought from BMW to the makers of the Vixen motorhome. That means you'd have lots of options as to where to steal parts if necessary.

Here in the 5-series the turbo-equipped six managed 114-bhp and was only made available with an automatic. In this E30 it comes with a manual as God intended, which should make keeping the turbo lit easier and those ponies more accessible. That is if you can stand the diesel's fart gatling gun noise.

Okay, are you deaf now? Good. You don't need ears to appreciate just how clean as a bean this Touring appears. The interior looks like it's straight out of a a BMW brochure and seems to be in perfect condition. It is a low-spec car so you'll have to wind your own windows and the seats are not of the sporty variety. It does have the little cassette tape slots in the console next to the e-brake so you'll have a place for those old Whitesnake tapes.


The exterior is equally nice - with just a minor ding in one of the doors - and one would assume that it's also in good shape underneath. At least the engine bay shots allude to that being the case.

The car apparently was brought over from Germany and is presently living in California. I don't know for how long that'll be however, as if you think registering the car with the Feds is going to be pa piece of cake I can assure you that trying to do so in the Golden State will only end in tears and a crumpled metal cube.


The seller claims that these diesel Tourings (Touringers? Tourists? too rah loo rah loo rah lies?) are extremely rare even in Europe, and I'd wager that this one might just be the only one to make it stateside. It is apparent the only one to do so and be for sale.

That sale - and yes I know the eBay auction has ended, we already went over this - asks for $13,500. Now, that's a lot of money for even the nicest gas engined E30 south of the M3's border, but considering the kit on this kaboodle, that may just be a fair deal. You of course need to say whether that's the case or not.


What do you think, does that price ensure this Bimmer wins the Touring award? Or, does this grey market car get a black mark for its price?

You decide!


eBay, or go here if the auction gets yanked.

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