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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, Jul-14-2017, 01:28:42 PM   #1
warez
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Default Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast?

As regulated by the NHTSA, 25 year old or older cars are legal for import into the US.

Let's say a few years from now, some Euro E36 M3 (3.2 S50B32 in particular) are available in the US market as collector cars, as an enthusiast you are looking to collect an E36 M3. There are two choices in front of you:

1) 1998 US E36 M3, Estoril Blue/Dove Gray, 5MT, S52B32, 240HP
2) 1998 Euro E36 M3, Estoril Blue/Dove Gray, 6MT, S50B32, 321HP

Assuming that Euro M3 is legally imported and can be registered. Both cars are in decent condition and under 100K miles.

Question:

1. Which E36 M3 would you buy?
2. How much more are you willing to pay for the Euro E36 M3?

Please feel free to share your thoughts and views on this!
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 02:14:28 PM   #2
M_Parallel
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Default Re: Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast?

Not sure how serious you are, but I take it you are.

If everything is equal, condition, color, etc, who wouldn't pick the Euro version?

The only reason I could imagine, is that is harder or impossible as I sometimes read, to obtain spare parts.

But it won't be untill 2021 that the first MY of the S50B32 reaches 25 years. It will be the 3.0 version for the first couple of years from now.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 02:56:40 PM   #3
warez
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Default Re: Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast?

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Originally Posted by M_Parallel View Post
Not sure how serious you are, but I take it you are.

If everything is equal, condition, color, etc, who wouldn't pick the Euro version?

The only reason I could imagine, is that is harder or impossible as I sometimes read, to obtain spare parts.

But it won't be untill 2021 that the first MY of the S50B32 reaches 25 years. It will be the 3.0 version for the first couple of years from now.
Agreed! Spare parts could be a problem, especially for mechanical and electrical parts but the rest are pretty much the same.

I would be willing to pay 20-30% more for an Euro E36 M3 but not sure if that is too low or high? Now a clean low milage US E36 M3 could cost more than 15K+ or even more. Can't imagine how much the Euro E36 M3 would cost if they are available by then.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 03:00:47 PM   #4
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Default Re: Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast?

The euro e36 is probably already 25-35% more all things equal. Add the cost of importation to that. At that price, I'd likely be saving a bit more and buying a Porsche.
Thats not to say it hasn't been worth it, and won't be worth it again due to changes in the market, and currency fluctuations.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 03:18:58 PM   #5
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Default Re: Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast?

As someone who has an S50B32, I can say that it's an enormously more satisfying motor.

Because of the S52's gruntiness, it's probably not actually that much better around town, but taching out the euro motor is nice. And there is nothing like a cable throttle ITB engine.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 03:28:17 PM   #6
M_Parallel
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Default Re: Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast?

Quote:
Originally Posted by warez View Post
Agreed! Spare parts could be a problem, especially for mechanical and electrical parts but the rest are pretty much the same.

I would be willing to pay 20-30% more for an Euro E36 M3 but not sure if that is too low or high? Now a clean low milage US E36 M3 could cost more than 15K+ or even more. Can't imagine how much the Euro E36 M3 would cost if they are available by then.
Seeing the price hike the last few years on Euro M3's here, by the time they become legit for US import, after import, shipping, registration, it could be unobtainium.


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Originally Posted by nrubenstein View Post
As someone who has an S50B32, I can say that it's an enormously more satisfying motor.

Because of the S52's gruntiness, it's probably not actually that much better around town, but taching out the euro motor is nice. And there is nothing like a cable throttle ITB engine.
Can't but agree.

But S52 grunty or not, the S50B32 makes more torque at any rev than the S52B32.

So that grunt is all relative compared to the top end.

Keep in mind the S50B32 makes, thank double vanos for that, over 236 ft-lb of torque from 2600-6200rpm, peaking at 258 ft-lb at just 3250rpm.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 05:23:35 PM   #7
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Default Re: Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast?

I'd be willing to pay about $5k more for the Euro. I used to dream about importing one, but now I think I'd rather have an imported Skyline instead and keep my modded US E36.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 06:07:37 PM   #8
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Default Re: Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast?

In California, the Euro spec cars will never be able to pass smog legally without major modifications, the process of which would ruin "collector" status. Because of that, I would take the same lump of cash and build a S54 CA State BAR Certified swap and upgrade other aspects of the chassis to mimic or improve upon Euro spec performance. This is assuming you'd want to actually drive the car and not just look at it.

Or, get a P.O box in Arizona...
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 06:24:45 PM   #9
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Default Re: Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammyzuko View Post
I'd be willing to pay about $5k more for the Euro. I used to dream about importing one, but now I think I'd rather have an imported Skyline instead and keep my modded US E36.
I think $5k isn't going to cut it. Not even a slice.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 06:41:01 PM   #10
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Default Re: Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast?

Eh, I'd rather have an old 911SC.


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Discussing Would you buy a Euro E36 M3 as an enthusiast? 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)