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E46 M3 (2001-2006) Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006.


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Old Tue, May-02-2017, 04:33:45 PM   #1
crisis1231
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Default M3 values

I know that this has been discussed multiple times, but I wanted to start a thread that really asks a few questions.

1. I have seen some e46 M3s going for >50k. Do you think anyone would buy one at this price now, even if it had all the options (LSB, sunroof delete, manual seats etc).

2. Have the prices really bottomed out? I cannot imagine that someone would buy an e46 m3 at the price of a newer model at this point in time.

With the price of an e92 m3 going down I think the e46 is going to drop a little more, but I want to hear your opinions.

Reason why I am posting this separately is I would like to own an e46 m3, but my current financial situation (student) does not allow me to buy one. So I want to hear everyone's thoughts.
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Old Tue, May-02-2017, 04:39:25 PM   #2
Slowmobile
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Default Re: M3 values

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Originally Posted by crisis1231 View Post
1. I have seen some e46 M3s going for >50k. Do you think anyone would buy one at this price now, even if it had all the options (LSB, sunroof delete, manual seats etc).
Yes, as collectors items... or if they have cash to blow. Stuff vanishes off EAG's website all the time.

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Originally Posted by crisis1231 View Post
Reason why I am posting this separately is I would like to own an e46 m3, but my current financial situation (student) does not allow me to buy one. So I want to hear everyone's thoughts.
Dont forget the maintenance costs after your purchase!
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Old Tue, May-02-2017, 05:28:07 PM   #3
divedoc
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Default Re: M3 values

Just my opinion here...when it comes to older high-performance cars like this, you will find some very clean/special examples selling for big bucks, sky's the limit. Then you'll find a bunch of solid cars, maybe not perfect but 8-9/10, that center around a general price range. And then you'll find the cars that list for much lower prices.

If you're looking for a good car that you intend to drive, expect to spend in the mid-teens for a car with 100k on the clock, and expect to pump some more money into it for the inevitable maintenance and oh-crap repairs that will happen in the first several months. If you spend less on the purchase, expect to spend more to keep it up; if you spend more up front, expect to spend less. But in general you will probably spend the same total amount, probably up to $20k (maybe less depending on 6MT vs SMG, convertible vs coupe, color combos).

If you see a car listed for, say, $10k or less, be VERY careful. You may be really lucky, but most likely you're about to buy a car that will need well over $20k total by the time you're done. And if you're unlucky, you're looking at car with serious problems that are either undisclosed or just being ignored, and you'll end up hating life (or at least your new car).

Look around this forum, see what some of these cars are selling for, and ask yourself if you can afford all of the related costs. There's a sales tracking thread that should help you decide how much is a reasonable price for the kind of car you want.

There's no telling whether or when E46 M3 prices will go up. The super-clean, low mileage unicorn cars are already fetching high prices, while the solid cars are holding steady, maybe ticking up a bit. I kind of doubt they'll end up following the E30 M3's trajectory, but one never knows. I would base my purchase decision on what's going on right now, and what you can afford right now. For sure they're less expensive than E90x cars, and will be for some time.
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Old Tue, May-02-2017, 05:39:05 PM   #4
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Default Re: M3 values

If its too good to be true,its false--my personal guideline when looking.
If you cant afford just the purchase, you probably cannot keep with the maintenance, wait till you graduate.
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Old Tue, May-02-2017, 06:14:37 PM   #5
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Default Re: M3 values

Nice ones have already been going up for ~2 years. Not nice ones seem to have bottomed out, but I don't see them going up any time soon.

But, we'll see. Cars are getting more and more dissimilar to it, so if this experience is what you want... this is what you have to get. I'm pretty sure that's why the whole sporty car from yesteryear market is on the rise.

I think the e9XM will end up cheaper than the e46M eventually. What it has the people prefer over the e46 (comfort, refinement, tech) are not things that make for a special driving experience in your older car.
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Old Tue, May-02-2017, 07:05:57 PM   #6
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Default Re: M3 values

i definitely have not forgotten about maintenance, but the real problem here is by the time I start working with a steady income, I worry the prices will be too crazy like the e30. Plus maintenance and parts for it will start to become rarer and more expensive so it's almost not feasible to buy unless you're making big bucks. Although some cars on EAG and others are priced at ridiculous tags, I'm just not sure if the car price will actually go up or if the hype will die down. I could not see anyone paying over 40k for this car as of yet. I'm sure that 10-15 years from now it will certainly be worth 50k+ for a pristine example, but it worries me that I'm starting to see these prices already.
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Old Tue, May-02-2017, 07:55:08 PM   #7
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Default Re: M3 values

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Originally Posted by crisis1231 View Post
i definitely have not forgotten about maintenance, but the real problem here is by the time I start working with a steady income, I worry the prices will be too crazy like the e30. Plus maintenance and parts for it will start to become rarer and more expensive so it's almost not feasible to buy unless you're making big bucks. Although some cars on EAG and others are priced at ridiculous tags, I'm just not sure if the car price will actually go up or if the hype will die down. I could not see anyone paying over 40k for this car as of yet. I'm sure that 10-15 years from now it will certainly be worth 50k+ for a pristine example, but it worries me that I'm starting to see these prices already.
Doubt it. The production numbers of the E46 M3 are much higher compared to the E30. High production numbers will also help with the problem of parts being rare, since there will be more demand for the parts so I don't think they will be too rare to find.
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Old Tue, May-02-2017, 08:01:23 PM   #8
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Default Re: M3 values

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Originally Posted by Obioban View Post
Nice ones have already been going up for ~2 years. Not nice ones seem to have bottomed out, but I don't see them going up any time soon.

But, we'll see. Cars are getting more and more dissimilar to it, so if this experience is what you want... this is what you have to get. I'm pretty sure that's why the whole sporty car from yesteryear market is on the rise.

I think the e9XM will end up cheaper than the e46M eventually. What it has the people prefer over the e46 (comfort, refinement, tech) are not things that make for a special driving experience in your older car.
Very well said. I agree 110%. The e9x models are just not as special of a car as the e46 M3. One of the biggest reasons why I say this is because the e46 M3 shares the same wonderful and amazing DNA as the e46 BMW M3 CSL. The car that many have said in the past and still say, is one of, if the THE most desirable M3/BMW M of all time. This shared DNA will make the e46 just that much more of a special car. The e90 models will drop down to a lower price than the e46 when the e46 BMW gains momentum and starts to rise in value/price/desirability. Its just a more special car.
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Old Tue, May-02-2017, 08:07:04 PM   #9
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Default Re: M3 values

Its a simple equation: how much do You have to spend?
The car is going to cost you money. The more of a mechanics special you get, the more of a mechanic you have to be. Does spending 25k now to (presumably) not have to spend the money on maintenance over a 10k car that needs 15k in maintenance make sense for you? In my case, that was exactly what i wanted. I searched for a project that i expected to spend a fair amount of time and money on. And so far thats wht ive got. I spent 9k on a car ive been able to drive exactly once before the entire rear end was removed and ive been slowly rebuilding it since then.
If you want a car to drive now, youll have to spend drive now money

In either case, good luck!
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Old Tue, May-02-2017, 08:21:54 PM   #10
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Default Re: M3 values

I sold my '88 M3 in 2004 when I went back to school. I've been kicking myself in the nuts ever since.

That said, it was the right thing to do at the time. I was going to be a student again, with very little money and even less time for hobbies. While I might have found a way to make the payments and maintenance work within my budget, it would've been irresponsible and a constant stress in my life. I didn't need to worry about door dings, rod bearings, or just keeping the battery charged while I dealt with schoolwork, finals, family, etc. I needed that time to focus on the truly important stuff...and, as much as I liked that car (I really, REALLY did), both it and I deserved a better arrangement.

Of course, now I couldn't begin to touch one for the kind of money I'm willing to spend on cars. So I get what you're saying, but honestly I don't think any car is worth starving yourself or neglecting all of the other more important things in life. In the end it's totally your decision, of course.

I also agree with the folks here who think that the E46 will *not* appreciate like the E30. And parts and labor for these cars will be plentiful for the foreseeable future, as well as the aftermarket.
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Discussing M3 values in the E46 M3 (2001-2006) Forum - Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006. at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)