1991 BMW E30 - Reader Ride
Mike Wilson's ultimate driving machine gets more ultimate
Mike Wilson's 1991 BMW E30
My introduction to the BMW E30 was a 325I convertible I had in the UK and was going to bring over to Australia, but I broke my leg up the top of the French Alps skiing and couldn’t drive so I lent it to my brother-in-law who took off from a green light and got T-boned by a Volvo, writing my car off.
When I came back to Australia I was looking for about five years before I found this one in Sydney. I did the negotiating over the phone and flew down and drove it back up to Brisbane. I knew I wanted to modify it and saw the S38 engine, from an E34 BMW M5, come up on eBay in Melbourne. So I did my research, bought it, and started the conversion. It took me a little over 12 months to complete as I had to custom make everything; driveshaft, exhaust, I even did the brake and clutch lines to fit the conversion and save myself some bucks.
My housemate used to laugh at me because the engine was in and out that many times, I had to take the sub-frame out and make it 20mm lower so that the bonnet could shut with that big engine in it.
It’s been on the road about 12 months now but I haven’t used it that much because in summer with the black leather it’s no fun and in the wet it was no fun until I finally got some decent tyres on it. The first three gears just used to go up in smoke when you put the foot down. I think I’ve balanced it just right. I wanted a mature build not like the thrashed out E30s you see around these days.
Value Guide: BMW E30
Prices vary wildly according to condition, from under $5k to more than $20k.
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