We’ve doubled our budget to $ 20,000 to see what we can find after seeing the best BMWs you can buy for 10,000. Now, we’ve raised it to $ 30,000. With this kind of money, you can get into a very attractive car with many M series. That said, more practical variants have been sprinkled, as not everyone needs or wants a full-fledged M car.
We’ve talked a little bit about the E34 at the 20,000 price point, but the E34 M5 has always ordered a little more cash. Despite rarely winning the popularity competition in the automotive litter, the E34 M5 is significant because it is one of the last hand-assembled M cars. It produces incredibly low; Throughout the three model-year lifetimes, North America saw only 1,678 of them. Up to 310 horsepower, 3.6-liter S38 inline-six-pair five-speed manual and it’s an excellent driving experience – even if it’s surpassed by European, 3.8-liter counterparts.
F30 / F32 335i or 340i / 435i
The 335i has been talked about before, and we’ve also mentioned the 335is in our “Best BMW Under $ 20,000”. $ 30,000 is enough to eventually jump on the B58-powered 340i and 440i, though it will probably be more miles. However, it can be worth it; The B58 is a significant leap in strength and reliability.
Or, you can’t go wrong with a 335i sedan or GT, or a 435i coupe or convertible; With so many options, you’ll probably be able to find one that suits your lifestyle. The nice thing about the F3X chassis is that they are very versatile; Create some modes and you’ll get a 400 horsepower Canyon Carver, or leave it in stock and they’re just reliable and sporty daily drivers. The season of taste.
Unfortunately, the only wagon option on the list, the 330i, 328d, or 328i wagon সমস্ত all effective options at a price point of $ 30,000. These are all xDrive, which makes this great candidate for everyday drivers where AWD is required. While not the fastest on the list, they are all powered by fairly reliable powerplants that provide decent enough power and stay away from the most practical cars here.
F22 M235i / M240i
We’ve written some nice words about the F22 in our buyer’s guide, and if you want to go for the Big Engine 2 series, you have the option. You might want to stick with a cleaner M235i, as the M240 available at this price is not exactly the best example. But, they are there, and the M235i’s N55 is still a treat for an engine and responds well to some changes, if that’s your thing. Watch for oil leaks, replace charge pipes, drive and enjoy.
E65 ALPINA B7
The second ALPINA model imported to North America, and of course the most controversial, was the E65 ALPINA B7 good for 493 horsepower via the supercharged N62 V8. In North America, we only got Facelifted E65 (thanks), and about 803 examples of this Autobahn ace have been imported. I personally don’t think anything of the look – I think the LCI is nicely aged and fills any gap that could represent the appearance of about 500 horsepower. It’s a controversial piece, but hey – it’s still an ALPINA.
This is quite a different choice than the other options on this list, but if you need a daily driver and a little i3 range works for you, there is no better daily driver than this! Basically while occasionally sticking to the 50,000 answer, using a smaller i3 can be a bargain in the market and even examples of low mileage can be under our budget. The REx (Range Extender) has a bunch of different flavors with trim that adds a petrol engine for longer traffic than sub-100 miles electric-only range. It travels at a speed of about 30 miles per hour – which makes it a lot of fun around town.
We also mentioned the E46 M3 at the 20,000 price point, but it’s worth a look again when you save a little more cash. This is where you start to see decent examples, and you can definitely get a clean driver-grade E46 for just under $ 30,000. It’s still a bit of a gamble, but as long as you can find one with the big three done (subframe, VANOS, rod bearings) you’re fine. Avoid SMG cars and suspiciously modified examples, and you’ll find yourself in the cockpit of one of the best driving experiences you can get at any price point.
E70 X5 M / X5 xDrive35d
The E70 X5 M was the first BMW M SAV, making it a significant part of BMW history and still an attractive and compelling vehicle. It’s definitely practical, too. You can take some solid examples of twin-turbo V8 super SUVs on this budget, and they even serve as a decent one-car solution. The X5 xDrive35d – Diesel Option – is also mandatory, as it is able to perform amazingly with some modifications and is notoriously unshakable.
E90 / E92 M3
The E90, E92, and E93 M3s have become almost achievable in our 30,000 budget. Powered by a high-revolving S65 (Redline at 8400) and available in a six-speed manual or dual-clutch automatic, the E9X M3 is a great performer that still feels truly special today. The S65 V8 is an event in itself, where a lot of engineering has been inspired by the Sauber Formula 1 engine – even being built in the same factory.
And while I usually speak for row-your-own gearboxes, DCT retains the character of the car – and in some cases, improves it – providing rapid power fluctuations and dramatic, sharp downshifts. Just be careful about maintenance on these vehicles – notably, throttle actuators and rod bearings are two “must dos” that will pay you back thousands of dollars. It doesn’t get much better than the E90 M3 – because it’s a versatile sedan that can do all the “motorsport” things you need – but there’s one more car on the list that makes it a little older than that old school.
A few years ago, the E39 M5 was something you could reasonably clean up on a tight budget – say, 15,000. And no – even examples of dubious origins will trade above that price point. But for 30,000 you can go to a well-arranged one with a few miles and it’s worth every red cent. The S62 V8 up front is much more durable than other BMW V8s, singing beautifully on a 7,000 rpm redline. There’s no fancy dual-clutch, as it’s only available with a Getrag six-speed manual. And did I mention that it’s drop-dead gorgeous?
There are a few other good options for a car that can play the designated driver for the night with friends but can be torn down by a ravine on the weekends. Even better – these cars are appreciated and hold good quality, so if you want to resell it, you probably won’t lose a ton of money. What are you waiting for Go buy one!
This concludes our recommendations for the best BMW below $ 30,000 How did we do that? Do we miss dear? And most importantly, why didn’t I buy an E39 M5 ten years ago?