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E36 M3 (1992-1999) {Euro - S50 B32 321hp @ 7400 rpm} {U.S. - S52 B32 240 hp @ 6000 rpm}
Total Produced: 71,212 - Years Produced: 1992 to 1999


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Old Fri, Mar-31-2017, 02:59:18 PM   #1
thirtysixnick
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Question E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question

Okay, I'm unsure if this post fits here, but I need some opinions.(and I know you guys have plenty of those)

So today I found a pretty great condition stock 1990 Nissan 240SX S13 Coupe for $3800. I'm pretty sure it's the single overhead cam KA, but it's very clean for what it is and could easily be an SR/RB swap project or even maybe some sort of M5X or S5X swap project?????
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SO, my question is, should I/could I trade my 1997 Estoril/Mulberry M3/4/5 with 160k on it and a currently money shifted engine for it? The only justification I have is that the 240 would probably not break again on me and I could easily tinker on it for half the price of the E36.... I don't want to part ways, but honestly at my age the M3 is pretty hard to keep up with. I understand the M3 is becoming a more and more "rare" car when clean, but that's not why I own it.

Do I keep the M3 and fix the engine and continue to make it better in every way (while also dumping every penny I seem to have), or do I ask 240 guy on CL if he would like to trade, or...???

I know this all is pretty much personal preference, but I know a lot of people on here have experience with other cars/situations. There really isn't much left to fix on the M3, but after money shifting it I really just don't know about fixing it. Maybe I'm just tired of having it sit. I'd much rather have an M3, but for my age and current income I've really started considering revisiting the E36 (maybe E46) M3 chassis when I can afford it.

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Old Fri, Mar-31-2017, 03:04:27 PM   #2
TheJDub-E36
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Default Re: E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question

If you just need a daily the s13 will do that, but going from an M3 to a single cam KA s13 is going to suck...
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Old Fri, Mar-31-2017, 03:15:07 PM   #3
thirtysixnick
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Default Re: E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question

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Originally Posted by TheJDub-E36 View Post
If you just need a daily the s13 will do that, but going from an M3 to a single cam KA s13 is going to suck...
Yeah the loss in power will probably make me hate life. It isn't all about going fast, but it does play a factor in having fun.. A clean S13 coupe is hard to come by when they're well done and not beat to shit though, and that would be what I'd want mine to be. Debating on maybe trying to trade the M3 for a clean 328is E36 instead because I love BMW too much, but a clean S13 Coupe would be so sick
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Old Fri, Mar-31-2017, 03:44:02 PM   #4
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Default Re: E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question

Don't be fooled by an s13s potential.
Consider the Silvia K an M3, and a US 240 is a 318i by comparison. By the time it's a goood car it will have paid for your m3
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Old Fri, Mar-31-2017, 03:47:08 PM   #5
thirtysixnick
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Default Re: E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question

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Don't be fooled by an s13s potential.
Consider the Silvia K an M3, and a US 240 is a 318i by comparison. By the time it's a goood car it will have paid for your m3
Damn, such a good comparison. I didn't even think about it like that. I'll probably hang onto the M3.
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Old Fri, Mar-31-2017, 05:09:45 PM   #6
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Default Re: E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question

"Condition: excellent"

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Old Fri, Mar-31-2017, 07:58:43 PM   #7
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Default Re: E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question

Please tell me your joking? There's no comparison here. I'd rather have an M3 in the garage with a blown head gasket for 2 years than trade it for an old 240. Not even on the same playing field. If it was a mint sr20 swapped with all the mods then maybe
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Old Fri, Mar-31-2017, 10:30:46 PM   #8
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Default Re: E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question

If this is an emotional decision because the money shift put a bad taste in your mouth, that's one thing. But from a practical standpoint, I think it would be a bad decision.

It looks ok, but the paint is baked on that car. I personally wouldn't touch it unless I was planning on dumping $5K into it for a re-spray. It's also a very early production S13. Always go for late production cars.

I know there are die hard Datsun fans out there, and I'm friends with some of them. But IMO, the only thing that car has going for it is the fact that it's RWD. Any car that's 27 years old is going to require upkeep to stay on the road reliably. It's not like a Nissan that's nearly 30 years old will be reliable simply because it's Japanese. That car was built when E30's were the current model. Think about that for a second...would you buy an E30 to DD and not expect much maintenance? It's the same deal.

The E36 M3 is a brutal machine compared to this little 4 banger, and is in another league entirely. It would run circles around the 240 from a performance standpoint, while also being much more refined and safer. M3's require a little upkeep, but IMO they're very reliable if you put the time in to go though the car.
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Old Fri, Mar-31-2017, 10:44:44 PM   #9
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Default Re: E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question

why not put a $1500 long block in the M?
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Old Sat, Apr-01-2017, 01:22:08 AM   #10
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Default Re: E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question

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Originally Posted by betrezra View Post
why not put a $1500 long block in the M?
^^ S52s are cheap! S54s are even cheap now (although have to put some $$$$ into it).

This is a no-brainer. The M3 is such a good car. Plus, pretty much ANY M3 that runs and is not a wrecked chassis or rust bucket is close to 10k in value now, if not more. You could fix your car and sell it and still have money left over buying this car you are considering...
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Discussing E36 M3 vs S13 Coupe Trade Question in the E36 M3 (1992-1999) Forum - {Euro - S50 B32 321hp @ 7400 rpm} {U.S. - S52 B32 240 hp @ 6000 rpm}
Total Produced: 71,212 - Years Produced: 1992 to 1999 at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)