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

Today's Nice Price or Crack Pipe 325iX comes with your choice of 2-different sets of BBS or some black steelies for its four-driven wheels. That choice sets the price, but will even the lowest have you set on thinking it's a deal?

You may remember last week we offered up what was arguably - no really, go ahead and try to argue it - one the least sporting editions of BMW's venerable E30 line. That of course was an auto-equipped convertible. Surprisingly, that car proved extremely popular, perhaps proving that this past winter was exceedingly long and brutal, and that a little sunshine on your shoulder was just what the doctor ordered.

In contrast to that cruiser, today's 1988 325ix is a model a reputation for accomplishment even if winter never ended. Well, perhaps not winter, but that mud season that comes in many areas just after winter but before the giant mutant mosquitos drive you into screened-in porches and Deet-induced hallucinogenic episodes.


The iX (yes, lower case i, upper case X as though it's Sarah Jessica Parker in L.A. Story - go look it up) went up against its major rivals in a Road & Track mega-test published in the May '88 issue and called Snow White and the Seven AWDs. Along with the Bimmer, that seven included an Audi 80, Subaru's Justy and XT6, a VW Quantum Syncro, Toyota Celica All-Trac, and a Pontiac 6000 STE. Geez, aside from the Germans, those cars have no modern analogs, what's up with that?

One of the takeaways that R&T took away from the test was the the iX had issues with cold weather starting, and that neither it nor, ironically, the Audi took top handling honors when the going got slush. They did applaud the Bimmer's engine - the 167-bhp 2,494-cc M20 - at least that is when it started, as well as the car's Getrag five speed gearbox.


This car has that very same brand of five-speed cog box, and comes from the Bay Area where it almost never gets cold enough to snow nor cause a car's computer to have temperature-related conniptions. It has a litany of new parts, a few of them being quite expensive players, as well as a few things that might cause you to pause. That's part of what makes it a perfect candidate for our nefarious purposes.

First off, on the downside, the paint on the car looks pretty horrible in places. In other regions it covers rust bubbles. Overall the seller gives it a 5 on a scale of one to ten, one being poorest and ten being best. Moving indoors things looks a little better with only the driver's side sport seat evidencing significant wear and - literally - tear.


Plusses include that previously mentioned litany of new parts already in place, as well as others - notably a new but contrastingly hued sunroof - yet to be installed. The ad also notes that the car runs strong and handles well. YMMV. Speaking of mileage, this car has 260K on the clock

The biggest note of interest in the ad however is the availability of wheel options which influence the asking price. At the present, the car rolls on a set of BBS RZ alloys with fairly new tires and in that configuration is offered at $4,500. Switch those for some black steelies with snow tires - two of which need replacing - and drop a grand off of that. Alternatively, step up to a set of multi-piece BBS RSs, again with low-mileage rubber - and the price goes up a grand to $5,500.


We're going to stick with the $4,500 price and the RZ wheels as that's how the car is set up. You'll need to vote on the car as presented. You can also weigh in down in the comments as to whether or not you'd take the seller up on any of the other wheel/price options.

What do you say about this all-wheel-drive E30 for $4,500? Is that a price that would have the wheels turning in your head? Or, is this Bimmer priced to make sits chance of a sale dimmer?

You decide!


SFBay Area Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

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