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Discussion Starter #1
I've found an E92 325i on AutoTrader for £2,950, which I am hopefully going to go and buy on Saturday. I've owned an E90 320i previously, but just wanted to get peoples opinions on if I'm making a bad purchase/missing out on any vital parts of the service history.

Details of the car:
56 plate 325i (early 2.5L model)
119k miles
New Bridgestone run flats all round
Msport wheels recently refurbed
Full service history, 4 owners but owned by this guy for the last 8 years
Recent new battery, starter motor, spark plugs, waterpump & thermostat
Body work in great condition (per seller - not seen in person yet)
Stacks of paperwork/invoices - not seen myself yet again, so not sure exactly what's been replaced.

Per the last MOT there is a minor oil leak, I've spoken to the guy who said this is from the Valve Cover Gasket, which as I understand isn't too hard to DIY, and will almost always leak on a car of this mileage.

My main concern is the mileage - but providing there is a full service history with some bigger ticket items such as waterpump/thermostat replaced then it may be okay.

Are there any other things I need to look out for? Does £2,950 seem like a good price - to high or to low? Should there be any other expensive repairs carried out by this mileage that I need to check?

Thanks for any and all advice!
 

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I would want to know that it has had all the recalls done, in particular: coils; injectors (version 11); battery connector; and heater blower.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yeah it's a manual - he didn't mention the clutch being previously replaced, but at 120k that must be pushing it on the stock clutch?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I would want to know that it has had all the recalls done, in particular: coils; injectors (version 11); battery connector; and heater blower.
I can't see any outstanding recalls on the gov.uk website when searching the number plate - does this mean that it has been done or not?

If it isn't proof, does BMW issue invoices for the work if its F.O.C.?

Thanks
 

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You could try contacting a BMW dealer with the car reg. They might give you the car's service and recall history...
 

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As an owner of an E92 325i of course you’re making the right choice!

£3k is a relatively cheap car and is at the lower end of the market. I’d say price seems about right but it’s all dependent on condition. Prices for these vary a lot with low mileage cars with desirable trim and options being up to twice that price at the same age.

From what you described it sounds okay to me.

Injectors are not an issue as that would be the older N52 engine which isn’t direct injection.

I do think they are a lot of car for the money. However, one reason they are cheap to buy is that they can be very, very expensive if something goes wrong so it’s always a risk. If you’re handy with diy that’ll help.
 

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Chris is right about potential cost of repairs. It's worth considering buying a warranty for the first year or so...
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Chris is right about potential cost of repairs. It's worth considering buying a warranty for the first year or so...
I'm happy to DIY most of the jobs possibly needed such as VCG, Clutch, Brakes, Suspension etc.

Are the engines reliable up to say 200k then? Obviously consumables will need to be replaced, but what else counts as consumable on these cars apart from the usual?

Thanks all for the advice so far
 

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Mine's just passed 100K and seems fine. Mind you, I do change the oil and filter every 6K. Some will say this is overkill, but when I read on line the kinds of issues that people suffer with, many of them are oil-related and the BMW change intervals are (in my opinion) crazy...including not changing the gearbox and diff fluids AT ALL!!!

Also worth ensuring the serpentine belt is changed every 50K. If it fails, it shreds, gets into the front crankshaft oil seal and then is ingested into the engine, with potentially catastrophic results.
 

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Details of the car:
56 plate 325i (early 2.5L model)

Thanks for any and all advice!
This is the older N52 engine. Later engine is the N53 3.0i.

I think the N52 engines started 2001 therefore is a very dated technology. Its fine if you already own one but to buy now..

You seem handy with tools so maintenance cost should be low if you shop around for parts. I would personally go for the later N53 engine and put some cash aside for set of new injectors.

You not mentioned if its leather interior or fitted Idrive as that can affect price a lot.

For £3k don't expect a E92 325i to be drive like its in its prime. Most of the Suspension parts most likely tired by now and need a refresh.
 

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Most engines are good for 200k if maintained and looked after. That’s the danger of buying with 120k as you have very little idea of how the car has been treated. Even a full history can be misleading as modern BMWs usually only get serviced as and when the computer requires. As Phil said it could have gone 20k miles between oil changes yet still have ‘Full history’.

It’s a cheap car. No point in a warranty, in a couple of years that will cost you the value of the car. Mind you, a couple of expensive repairs will also cost you the value of the car. That’s why it’s cheap I’m afraid. A 13 year old car with 120k can’t be expected to run faultlessly. But if you are prepared for problems and handy with spanners then it’s worth a punt.
 

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My issue would be the oil leak. If it’s a simple fix then why hasn’t it been done?

I would never sell a car with an oil leak or any other known problems.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
This is the older N52 engine. Later engine is the N53 3.0i.


You not mentioned if its leather interior or fitted Idrive as that can affect price a lot.

For £3k don't expect a E92 325i to be drive like its in its prime. Most of the Suspension parts most likely tired by now and need a refresh.
It's leather interior - non Idrive. I prefer it without Idrive tbh as both the hardware and software are probably massively outdated by now



My issue would be the oil leak. If it’s a simple fix then why hasn’t it been done?

I would never sell a car with an oil leak or any other known problems.
Yeah it is a bit of a concern, but I believe leaky VCG are very common on these cars at this mileage/age right? I'll obviously be fully inspecting the car prior to purchase, but I think most of the plastic covers will get in the way of actually being able to check the gasket?
 

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There are other bits that do wear over time

Most of the rubber bushes and suspension ball joint most likely dead now.

I have owned my E92 4 years. Its a 9 year old car now.
I am now refreshing the suspension as they seem tired. Parts cost me £360 for 4 shocks and mounts.
Just received delivery of front control arm set paid £150.
Although I fit parts myself still spent £500+ on parts.

A 13 year car will need many parts replaced to bring it to point that it should drive like a BMW..otherwise its just gonna be a BMW shell.
 
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