by pyite on Sep 11, 2011 Vehicle: 1998 BMW M3 4dr Sedan
I have owned this car for almost 2 years now, and it just feels great to drive.
Check the "Melted Rubber" web site for a thorough review.
With 230 HP, it is not going to win too many drag races; and I only get 25 mpg with 95% freeway driving.
I could probably squeeze a couple more out of it, but it is practically impossible not to be a leadfoot.
One thing to watch out for if you get one is the routine maintenance.
It is typical for people to neglect this until 130,000+ miles, at which point the car will likely need shocks, bushings, etc all around and a clutch.
BMW st^H^H dealers have turned overcharging into an art form - finding a good independent mechanic will save you a fortune.
by Kevin on Jul 25, 2010 Vehicle: 1998 BMW M3 4dr Sedan
I have had my 4 door M3 since 2003. I bought it from a private dealership with only 17K miles on it. I added the Dinan software one day at the dealership on a whim and wow 155 mph and I had to stop. It might have done 160, but who knows, I could also have gone to jail because of that. Used it as a daily drive until 2007. Now it is strictly for weekends and appointments. I have a truck for daily use now. Now have 107K miles. Normal maintenance and no major problems thus far. I could keep this car forever. My 9 year old son loves it and wants me to keep it for him when he gets 16. Yeah right!
by mlebauer on Apr 16, 2010 Vehicle: 1998 BMW M3 2dr Convertible
Owned this car for almost 10 years, love it almost as much as my family. It stays parked most of the winter, but now that spring has sprung, pop the top and hit the twisties. It handles like a slot car, nothing tracks better. Not the most powerful, but the horsepower race is overrated. Mine is a 5 speed, a 6th cog would be nice, but NEVER would I consider a self-shifter. Car is all smiles :-) Even 12 years old I still find people gathering around it in parking lots.
by M3 Cruzer on Jul 10, 2009 Vehicle: 1998 BMW M3 4dr Sedan
I love this car. I wish it would last forever. I bought it used with 15K miles on it in 2002. I have driven it 90K+ miles with 100% reliability, it has never broken down once. This car is so much fun to drive that I can't imagine stepping down to any other car. I am forever spoiled! With 105K miles, this car still feels new. This is not exactly an inexpensive car to own. I get about 23 MPG in mixed city/hwy driving. Tires cost $1K every 25K miles. I have probably spent $5K+ on routine maintenance during the seven years I have owned it. Who cares though, what I love about this car is that it has 4 doors, hauls, gets 23+ MPG, has achieved 100% reliability to date, and is a blast to drive.
by Melitameister on Jul 27, 2008 Vehicle: 1998 BMW M3 4dr Sedan
In my 60s and after driving economy family cars for many years, a friend gave me low down on E36 M3s. Found one cheap with 95k on odometer. Now, excited every time I climb in, even just for the short drive to work. Recently signed up for BMW Club "driver's school" at Watkins Glen and got to run total of over 100 minutes over two days hitting 130, sliding through corners at 80 and passing some hot cars. Will be doing that again! The feel of the road in this thing is so perfect you can't imagine the fun. Plenty of smooth power at all speeds. Quiet, winding country roads are heaven on earth. Shoot past cars when passing. Best way to have an affordable world class driving experience.
by Bryan Delong on Jul 5, 2008 Vehicle: 1998 BMW M3 2dr Convertible
This is a well engineered car that is a blast to drive. The car is balanced and poised on either back roads or the highway. Maintenance costs can be high, but this is the trade off for owning a great sports car. My M is ten years old and still handles and drives better than many new cars. The convertible may not be for everyone, but I love the top down cruising. Find one that has been taken care of and you will not regret it.
BMW further expands the M3 lineup by adding a four-seat convertible version for enthusiasts who crave open-air motoring. Like the M3 sedan, the convertible is available with either a manual or automatic transmission. Napa leather upholstery and a rollover protection system are standard. All M3s get standard side airbags this year.