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Treasure Trove: BMW E Series Convertibles and Parts

Most automobile collectors migrate to one brand, type, or style of car. In this case, the collector is/was into BMW E Series cars, particularly the E30. These cars were in production from 1982-94. There are five E30 325i convertibles for sale and the seller also seems to have cornered the market on parts for these machines. Anything that you might want looks to be in his garage/barn. This collection can be found in Livonia, Michigan and here on craigslist where buyers will strike their own deals with the seller. Thanks, Dave Frick, for the heads-up on this one!

The BMW E30 is the second generation of the BMW 3 Series. The cars included both coupés and convertibles along with sedans and wagons. Multiple engines powered these machines, i.e. both four-cylinder and six-cylinder (gas and diesel).

The variants of the E30 that would be sold in the U.S. included:

  • 318i (1984-1985, 1991)
  • 318is (1991)
  • 325, 325e and 325es (1982-94)
  • 325i, 325is (1987-1991)
  • 325ix (1988-1991)

Thanks for a brief E Series introduction, Wikipedia.

The seller has five BMW 325i convertibles for sale, although we only see four in the photos. We don’t know anything about them except that one is from 1987, it’s a six-cylinder and it’s black in color. Whether any of them run or come close to that is not known. Much more attention is placed on the parts, which seem to be endless in supply. Needs doors, hoods, or fenders? He’s got ‘em. Need engines, transmissions, and related parts? He’s got ‘em, too. Interior seats, trim and tools? Well, you get the picture.

If you share the seller’s affinity for these cars and can’t find a this or that for your car, or would like to add a convertible to your stash, check out the seller’s “Barn Open House” listing and hit him up!


  1. unclemymy Member

    A great collection of parts, to be sure. But I can’t quite figure it out about the cars/bodies – were these parked there, or dug out of that muddy hillside?

    Like 1
  2. alphasud Member

    Have you seen prices of E30’s lately? Like most things just a few years ago a E30 could be had for little money. A technician friend I worked with would buy these up for less than 1K and thrash them to they gave up. He always had a spare waiting. They were fun and economical cars back when BMW still built descent stuff.

    Like 3
  3. Steve R

    No prices = overpriced.

    Steve R

    Like 10
  4. Phlathead Phil

    5 ‘Verts? I only see 4.

    Like 1
  5. djjerme

    The money in that collection is the hardtops, as long as the interior lining is there and not trashed. They can be sold in good shape for a grand or two.

    Next would be those sport seats on the top shelf, and if he can put together a good full interior, it’s about 2K on the open market.

    The rest is just bits and pieces you’ll be scraping the CL to offload for a few bucks here or there. Nothing in that is really “rare”, vert’s were always “Drivetrain donors”.

    Being that this collection is near the rust belt, I’m guessing the chassis are junk. And most of the easily sold body parts (fenders, door panels, seats..etc.) are vert specific due to the different reinforcement (bottom sill) done on verts.

    The motors since they have the heads off, are cores. You could maybe sell any 885 heads to some one, but the rest of the motor is common as heck, and fairly stout, so few people are looking for bottom ends.

    Any auto tragics are landfill bound, if there is a manual, the pedal box setup and driveline is worth reselling. And unless there is some unique LSD rear installed in one, they are probably scrap as well.

    Like 2
    • Phlathead Phil

      Excellent write up. You appear to know your stuff on these. Interesting.

      Like 1
  6. Bernie H.

    Hey Djjerme, you pretty much hit the nail on this one. I used to work on these older 3 Series and got my parts from Chris at Bodywerks in Detroit. Retired now, still have a 91′ 318IC daily driver. Most of this is almost scrap as no real demand exists anymore. Their just not worth spending big $$ to fix, especially when later cars can be had for the same money

    Like 0
  7. piston poney

    if you have a 4 cylinder E30 then you could get the 6 cylinder suspensions front and rear and have a pretty good handling car and if you want more power in that 4 cylinder then buy some low compression pistons and put a turbo on it and boom your 4 cylinder E30 is just as good as your friend’s 6 cylinder E30 (my granda bought a 318I with a 4 cylinder and a manual trans form a guy out in California who do so much to the car, low compression pistons and turbo, direct port nitrus injection, front bumper delete, raceing seats with 5 point harness and a bunch of other thing i don’t rember) and my grandpa but the 6 cylinder suspension under it. we still have the car but it needs work

    Like 1

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