1998 BMW 3 Series Review | Edmunds.com

1998 BMW 3 Series

BMW 3 Series Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.5 L Inline 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Rear Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 168 hp @ 5500 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 18/27 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 1998 BMW 3 Series

  • Info is not yet available.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    One of our all-time favorite cars. Carves turns faster than your dad carves Thanksgiving turkey.

  • Cons

    Price is a bit steep. Interior is a bit cramped.

  • What's New for 1998

    BMW swaps out the four-cylinder engine in the 318 coupe and convertible for a 168-horsepower 2.5-liter inline six -- these cars become the 323is coupe and 323i convertible (why it's "323" and not "325," we'll never know). Meanwhile, the 318i sedan and 318ti hatchback continue on unchanged. All cars get standard side airbags this year, except the 318ti, on which they are optional.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (11 total reviews)  |  Write a Review

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

210,000 miles on factory clutch

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Vehicle: 1998 BMW 3 Series 323is 2dr Coupe

The BMW 323is (chassis code: E36) is a very reliable automobile with exceptional fuel-sipping properties. Naturally you'll have to replace some parts along the way, however they are not as expensive as most would have you believe. Most repairs can be done by even the most novice of home mechanics. The cooling system should be overhauled every 60-80k miles but even with OEM parts the whole task should cost the DIYer no more than $350-400 (radiator, thermostat, water pump, hoses, etc.). The engine is brilliant and I still see 27 MPG as my overall avg. As mentioned in the title, I am currently at 210,000 miles and still on the factory clutch! I will keep this car for at least another 100k.



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

First 90 days

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Vehicle: 1998 BMW 3 Series 323is 2dr Coupe

I bought my '98 323is in September of '11 with 55,400 original miles. It has been about 90 days and the car has been a pure joy to drive and own. The M52 is the least powerful of the 2.5 I6 engines available but is still reasonably quick with a wonderful smooth character and a good amount of torque. The balanced feel and handling put a huge smile on my face in every corner. It is also comfortable and reasonably quiet on the highway inspite of its tight, sporty character. This car was well maintained by its previous two owners and it shows. I now understand why BMW calls their cars the "Ultimate Driving Machine".



1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Bloddy mangled wreck

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Vehicle: 1998 BMW 3 Series 323is 2dr Coupe

i always like the E36 since i was a kid so i bought one with 98,000 miles on the clock. it seemed that as soon as the odometer turned over 100,000 miles, it no longer wanted to do anything correctly. it needed fixing and the parts are expensive. i have spent $6k-$8k on this car in parts alone this past year. the check engine light always comes on; as soon as one problem is fixed another thing is wrong. i drive conservatively and i can not get more than 15mpg and it goes through back tires very quickly. the engine is very noisy and vibrates a lot. the power windows can not go up without help and the headliner is falling off. all in all: i can not wait to buy another car.




This is a real car

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Vehicle: 1998 BMW 3 Series 323is 2dr Coupe

Whenever I think of a car for the rest of my life, it will be a BMW. I've had this car for one month and the ride is unbelievable. The tranny shifts so freaking smooth you'll think it's an autostick. Mine has 72,000 miles right now, and I swear it drives like brand new. It takes windy roads like it's on tracks, and I've already hit triple digits on the highway twice without noticing unitl I looked down at my speedometer! I think that shows that I've really been driving the heck out of this thing, and I'm still averaging around 25 miles to the gallon; over 30 when I'm on flat highway. I think Hondas and Toyotas and Nissans are great cars, but after a BMW, I'll never be able to drive one again.




Truly the ultimate driving machine

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Vehicle: 1998 BMW 3 Series 323is 2dr Coupe

This car had about 40,000 miles on it when I bought it under the Certified Pre-Owned program - that has turned out to be the best car-buying decision I ever made. I LOVE THIS CAR !! It now has over 104,000 miles on it - I've driven it back and forth across the entire country several times and there was never a problem. BMW really has a way of making you feel at one with the car like no other carmaker seems to be able to duplicate. Maintenance costs have been average with no expensive surprises. Everyone is amazed at how clean the engine always stays, and at how shiny the original paint still is, although I've lived both in dry desert areas and very cold climates. Again - I love this car!




Great car

by on
Vehicle: 1998 BMW 3 Series 323is 2dr Coupe

This has been a great car. I have 103,000 miles and never a problem. I plan on keeping it another 100,000,



Full 1998 BMW 3 Series Review

What's New for 1998

BMW swaps out the four-cylinder engine in the 318 coupe and convertible for a 168-horsepower 2.5-liter inline six -- these cars become the 323is coupe and 323i convertible (why it's "323" and not "325," we'll never know). Meanwhile, the 318i sedan and 318ti hatchback continue on unchanged. All cars get standard side airbags this year, except the 318ti, on which they are optional.

Talk About The 1998 3 Series

Read more about the 1998 BMW 3 Series

Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 18
  • cty
/
  • 27
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs