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Old 04-04-2009, 03:43 PM   #1
ejohnson
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Default 325iX buyers guide

Looking at picking up one of BMWs greatest AWD sports car? well there are a few things you should know about them while you are looking. First, here is a little background info/specs on the car







Now when you go to look at your very first iX. First thing is first, look at the front CV boots. Are they torn? If so, talk the price down alot... new shafts can be upwards of $1000 each, the cv joint could be fine, but its your chance to get the price down some more. If the boots are good, then you should be good to go on that part. The front diff is pretty hard to break, so dont worry about that one. Control arms and steering racks are iX only parts, so check them for wear and adjust price as needed.

Next, look at the tires, are they the same size? If they are not the same sized tires, walk away right there. There is a good chance the t-case will be damaged due to wheels turning at different speeds for a extended time. Wheels, for the iX only work on the iX, but 2wd wheels will work on the awd cars (offsets and what not)

You may want to check to see if the t-case works. In order to do that you need to jack up the rear of the car with a floor jack. Make sure your on a flat clear surface. Jack the car by the rear diff (with a block of wood) and slowly try to drive forward with just the front wheels on the ground. Here is a video to show you how. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4exvt2_Yjc

Rust!! this is the leading cause of iX death.. since they are awd most people use them in northern areas that use salt. Common places that these thing will rust are:
front fenders under the wheel flares
front and rear jack pads
rear battery tray
rear corner of door jam
lisence plate lights
rear most part of pop out windows

That is about all I can think of right now, but would like to tell you right off the bat, a iX that needs work will cost you big time to repair. A iX that doesnt need any work will cost alot less over the years... you can catch any problems before they become a big issue.
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Old 04-04-2009, 08:43 PM   #2
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nice write up, test the VC kind of sketches me out but my car went up some very icy hills on all seasons with out even flinching.


I love seeing the original articles about the car
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Old 04-04-2009, 09:12 PM   #3
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Very nice! Thank You. I wish my interior looked like that!
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Old 04-05-2009, 02:00 AM   #4
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since this is a sticky, i thought that i would mention that it is prudent to buy a car with a serviceable/rebuildable engine. awd engines are pretty hard to find since the ix engine isn't interchangeable with a standard e30. of course the oil pan is different, but the dipstick is in the wrong position where it is drilled through the block. also the oil pump is completely different as well as the machined pads on the engine where it mounts. seems like it spins the opposite direction.
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Old 04-05-2009, 02:57 AM   #5
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Lovely Erik! I also love the origional ads.

Add this to the buyers guide.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8nBpDNYPeTQ
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Old 04-05-2009, 08:01 AM   #6
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General note - in the last year or so, most ix specific parts have shot through the roof - brake master = $1100, stock cat=$1500, one front axle=$1100, steering rack=$1400, front strut housing=$800-900, etc. People are parting cars more and more, but these are (mostly) wear parts, so putting a steering rack or t-case on with 130k miles on it is not buying you much time. If you buy one of these cars, you have to be (in my humble opinion) 1) a patient enthusiast; 2) a decent shadetree mechanic; 3) willing to spend money. This is not a typical E30 and they have a unique ability to make you crazy. They are the coolest of BMWs though. I think still the best AWD BMW ever made.

After this many years, it's almost impossible to find a trustworthy service history. All it takes is one bad (two wheel) tow or mismatched tires during the life of the car to blow the VC. Even if the car has matched tires now, you can't tell if they were always that way.

I agree that rust is a primary issue with these cars, but I'd be more focused on body rust than things like doors and fenders that can be replaced. As long as rust is not under the fenders, it's salvagable. The steel squares at the rear of each wheelwell, in the trunk under the plastic cover by the battery, the gas tank, hard brake lines, floors, exhaust hanger attach points, etc. Don't forget front struts.

No matter what you pay to buy the car, that's just hte down payment on the cost of ownership. In my opinion it's worth it because a well sorted ix is just a blast to drive. My favorite car even over my E38.
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Old 04-05-2009, 08:03 PM   #7
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Thanks for all the info! I'm looking to buy an e30 ix and this helps a lot. Those original articles are awesome!!
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Old 10-26-2009, 09:53 PM   #8
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With a mint 91 318is and 88 M3 in the stable I was looking for a winter driver to spare the 318 from the winter. A 90 IX posted on craigs next town over for short money had me there with cash in hand. It didn't llok too bad, usual rust, engine started right up and sounded fine. But because of leaking brake lines it was not drivable. The seller had a trailer and was more than happy to deliver. Home and up on jack stands I now see that the car has too long a road to recovery. The body and undercarriage are not bad at all. But the rust has attacked the brake, fuel lines and my expereince is that once you touch one bad hard line your into them all.
So if buying look carefully at these items because they can render an otherwise perfect driver into a parts car.

Which BTW is what I'll be doing 1990 4 dr IX black interior will be parting out. anything specific needed send me a PM
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Old 11-05-2009, 10:14 PM   #9
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http://books.google.com/books?id=AZK...age&q=&f=false
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Old 11-19-2009, 08:09 PM   #10
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Default '90 IX on Ebay

Know ANYTHING about it? I am thinking it might be a good buy anywhere south of $5,000 (though a few more miles than I am hoping for). Thoughts?

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/BMW-3...m#ht_776wt_959
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