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1990 BMW 325i Sport M-Tech 2

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1990 BMW 325i Sport M-Tech 2

Background

The BMW E30 was, and for many still is, the definitive 1980’s three-door saloon and estate. Its profile is instantly recognisable and the front engine/rear-wheel-drive platform offers keen drivers a perfectly balanced chassis with which to exploit the 169bhp and 166lb/ft of torque of the 325’s straight-six.

But the key to the E30’s continuing success, even after a quarter of a century, is its flexibility and durability. Few classic cars offer a better blend of civility and docility when the driver is happy to just amble around, and hard-edged snarling when he wants to play.

As a result, the BMW E30, especially when fitted with one of the bigger engines, has moved seamlessly from its position as the yuppie’s favourite to the weapon of choice for driving enthusiasts across the world - and prices are starting to rise as more and more discerning drivers are cottoning on to just how good they are.

BMW was so far-sighted that it realised something back-in-the-day that still escapes many BMW enthusiasts: that while the M3 is a brilliant sporting saloon, sometimes you will actually get more enjoyment from something that is a little less raw, a bit less focused.

Which is why it created the 325i Sport. It started by slotting that creamy straight-six engine under the bonnet of a two-door shell, where it fed power to the rear wheels via a close-ratio, five-speed gearbox and a limited-slip differential.

The chassis is a faint bit lower and stiffer than that of a standard 325i thanks to an M-Technic set-up and 7x15 alloy wheels fitted with low-profile (for the time, anyway) tyres.

The interior features sports front seats, and an M-Technic steering wheel and gearknob. An M-Technic bodykit, comprising front and rear spoilers and side trims, help distinguish the car from the standard model.

The Vehicle

This BMW 325i Sport M-Tech2 was first registered on 19 January 1990 by Rydale BMW, now Sytner Oldbury, in the western suburbs of Birmingham. The first owner kept the car for 6 years and the next owned it for an amazing 20 years - although in storage unused 2007-12 we understand.

In mid-2019 the 325i underwent some restoration work by its third guardian, Anglia Car Auctions (who kept it on trade licence in their collection and barely used it). It was then sold with 20% of the hammer price going to a charity. See History Highlights for more detail on the work done.

Bought from them by our vendor, a sports and classics dealer, the BMW is now looking for a new owner - maybe someone who not only wants to keep it looking great, but to use it and drive it as intended.

On the Outside

This 325i Sport has the full M-Technic 2 body kit, which was a development on the original M-Technic kit and replaced the original bumpers with its styling rather than incorporating them. The kit continues the bumper-line with body-coloured trim all the way down the side of the car rather than just skirts on the sills and also adds a boot lid wing-spoiler rather than the lip on the original M-Technic.

The Alpine White paint finish appears to be near perfect and very strong, having been given attention during the pre-auction renovation works a year or so ago. The so-called ‘Shadow Line’ black window surrounds provide a great looking contrast to the white and, kidney grille aside, there is no chrome on the car. The shut lines and panel gaps are, unsurprisingly, spot on. You’d really expect little else from a well put together and recently sorted BMW.

The 15-inch BBS style light alloys were also refurbished and are in good shape. They are fitted with matching Continental PremiumContact tyres which are dated 2017 but understood to have covered only 200 miles or so.

On the Inside

The interior too is immaculate. The Silver cloth upholstery has held up to the mileage very well, with barely even a plucked thread to be seen across the seats. The burnishing on the steering wheel rim and the gear knob (both M Sport items) is the only real give away for the 111,000 miles.

Whilst the front sports seats are manually adjustable, the mirrors, windows and sunroof are electrically powered. There’s also a pull-up rear sun blind and push-out rear window vents. A more modern Sony CD stereo with Aux input and Bluetooth has been fitted and is connected to a Kenwood CD multi-changer in the boot.

As we understand it, all electrics are working as they should and if you want to check exterior lights and fluid levels, just engage your inner airline pilot and touch the button on the overhead test panel.

The carpets and protective overmats front and rear are in good order, as is the headlining.

You don’t have to take our word for the great condition of this car. Use the ‘Contact Seller’ option to get in touch with the vendor and arrange a personal inspection (subject to Tier 3 restrictions) or a video call to look at the car in more detail.

Underneath

Everything looks pretty original under the bonnet - aside from Scorpion alarm/immobiliser - and it’s in good order too. There’s a little speckling on the inlet manifold and surface rust on brake servo housing but all the hoses and ducting look renewed so there’s nothing else to detract from what is a great looking engine bay for a 30 year old car.

Underneath the car everything seems in a good, solid condition with no apparent corrosion. Aside from a few shows, the vendor has kept the car in his indoor showroom since bringing it back from auction. Compared to the standard E30, the 325i Sport has sports coil springs and uprated dampers and so sits a little lower but there is no damage to the undersides that we can see.

The inside of the boot reflects the condition of the car’s interior - it is very good indeed with carpet and linings clean and intact. There’s a full size spare alloy with identical rubber to the road wheels, jack and warning triangle should they be required and a tool kit mounted on the underside of the boot lid.

History Highlights

We include an online HPI report run at the auction start which shows no finance outstanding and no insurance markers for theft or damage.

The most recent MOT expired in November 2020, having passed with no advisories, but this was a Covid extension and so hasn’t been tested for over 18 months. That said, it hasn’t been outside or driven much in that time either.

The history file contains every expired MOT certificate, various invoices from servicing and maintenance 1991-2005 and the V5, in the name of the 20-year-long owner. The service book is stamped up to 1999 (56k miles).

Anglia Car Auctions kept this car themselves for a few years and in 2019 they gave what was already a sound car a thorough makeover whilst retaining as much originality as possible. The body‑kit was removed and any problem areas addressed - reportedly a windows out respray - and the engine overhauled with the camshaft and cambelt replaced using genuine BMW parts. We understand that they invested around £20k in the car to bring it up to its near perfect condition.

The car comes with a spare key, handbooks and wallet, its full set of tools and even its original white glove box torch.

What We Think

The BMW E30 is a highly desirable modern classic, and the 2.5-litre straight-six manuals are one of the most appealing variants. The 325i Sport M-Technic is a pretty rare beast, there are only around 200 currently on the road in the UK with around 4 out of 5 having the second generation M-Technic styling.

So with something this hard to find, examples like this one that seemingly want for nothing and are presented in such a strong condition don’t come along every day. We think that such a great car is going to fetch between £24,000 and £30,000.

The vendor reports that the car is in great mechanical condition, and huge fun to drive too with a nice clutch and gearbox operation - so the only question you should be asking yourself is why you haven’t bid already?

Viewing is always encouraged, and this particular car is located with the vendor in Leicestershire; to arrange an appointment please use the ‘Contact Seller’ button at the top of the listing. Feel free to ask any questions or make observations in the comments section below, or try our ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.

If needed, please remember we have a network of suppliers we work with regularly including: Classic & Sportscar Finance for purchase-financing, Footman James for classic car insurance, Classic Concierge for storing your car plus we have a list of contacts who can help with transport and shipping.  

BORING, but IMPORTANT: Please note that whilst we at The Market always aim to offer the most descriptive and transparent auction listings available, we cannot claim they are perfect analyses of any of the vehicles for sale. We offer far greater opportunity for bidders to view, or arrange inspections for each vehicle thoroughly prior to bidding than traditional auctions, and we never stop encouraging bidders to take advantage of this. We do take a good look at the vehicles delivered to our premises for sale, but this only results in our unbiased personal observations, not those of a qualified inspector or other professional, or the result of a long test drive.

Also, localised paint repairs are common with collectable and classic cars and if they have been professionally carried out then they may be impossible to detect, even if we see the car in person. So, unless we state otherwise, please assume that any vehicle could have had remedial bodywork at some point in its life.

Additionally, please note that most of the videos on our site have been recorded using simple cameras which often result in 'average' sound quality; in particular, engines and exhausts notes can sound a little different to how they are in reality.

Please note that this is sold as seen and that, as is normal for used goods bought at auction, return policy does not apply. See our FAQs for more info, and feel free to inspect any vehicle as much as you wish.

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Seller

autobahn

  • Location: Leicester, Leicestershire
  • Odometer Reading: 111000
  • Gearbox: Manual
  • Colour: Alpine White (218)
  • Interior: Silver Cloth (0270)

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