Would You Go $6,500 For This Clean, Low Mileage 1989 BMW 735i?

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

Today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe 735i is the short wheelbase edition, but still seems long on charm. Let’s see if its clean condition and low miles should make it sell in short order.

You sometimes have to channel your inner Sherlock Holmes when it comes to dealing with descriptions in car ads. Take for example last Friday’s 1993 Toyota Land Cruiser which was super cheap owing to what the ad said was a blown head gasket.


Okay detectives, why did that gasket blow, hmm? A clue might be found farther down in the ad’s description where it notes the addition of a new radiator. If that truck had been run for any length of time with a crapped out radiator and hence no coolant, a head gasket could be the least of a new owner’s worries. Still, two grand is two grand, and enough of you felt that it was worth getting all wrenchy on it to earn that broken Toy a solid 78% Nice Price win. Elementary by dear Watsons!

Say, what if you’re not all that handy? What if you have a jones for an old set of wheels but couldn’t reliably tell a spanner from a salad fork? Well, first of all good on ya’ for being here. Second of all, it probably wouldn’t be a good idea for you to be tempted by today’s 1989 BMW 735i. Sure, this white over saddle beauty looks both handsome and remarkably clean, but let me let you in on a little secret—come a little closer, I won’t bite—these cars are not for the faint of heart.

Yep, if… I mean when, something does go wrong on it, if you do not have even a modicum of mechanical knowledge, or alternatively a great big wheelbarrow full of money for a mechanic, you’re going to have a real bad time. It’s an old car, many of the main systems of which—computers, trim pieces, mechanical parts, etc—are going to become increasingly difficult to find, and you’ll have to be smarter than the average bear to deal with it. Bimmerforums may not be enough of a crutch if you don’t know what you’re doing


Of course, if you’re not shy about rolling up your sleeves and getting a little greasy, then this may just prove a tempting ride considering its condition, miles, and apparent maintenance history.

First off, it looks to be in fine shape. The seller says he had it detailed just prior to taking the pics for the ad, which is better than the typical blurry nighttime snaps after a trip through the Arby’s drive-thru that seem to plague most Craigslist ads.


Both the interior and exterior appear clean, and the passenger-side footwell looks like a peacock may have lounged there, so that’s pretty cool. There’s no rust on the outside as the seller goes to great lengths to note that the factory undercoat (thanks Mr. Lundegaard!) remains intact. There are no major dents or dings in the Alpine White body either, and the rubber trim seems to still be doing its job. Miles are an appreciably low 38,000.


Now, having extremely-low miles on an old car kind of makes buying it for that reason a moot point. That’s because adding any more would quickly erase your original investment. This one’s odometer is reasonably untaxed, but not so bereft of miles that you might feel compelled to leave it in the garage.


Mechanically, it’s said to make those miles without complaint. It does have newish fuel injectors on its M30 straight six—208-bhp/222 lb-ft of torque—as well as a replaced coil (?) and distributor cap. The front suspension enjoys newer control arms and the car comes with the remainder of the kit from which those were sourced. You can here the engine roar to life here.

How much would you pay for this seemingly well-preserved and still stately 735i? The asking is $6,500, which is a lot for an E32 simply because most of those that haven’t met the crusher are simply not nearly as nice as this one.


Ah, but is the E32 735i a car that warrants such fealty? Is this car interesting enough to maintain its ongoing maintenance? More importantly, would you pay that $6,500 asking price in order to have the mantle passed to you?


You decide!


Quad Cities Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

H/T to QCGoose for the hookup!

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About the author

Rob Emslie

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