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1988 BMW (E30) 325iX JDM Sedan

1988 BMW (E30) 325iX JDM Sedan

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Details

Price: SOLD

Mileage: 87,700 Miles (139,520 Kilometers)

Engine: M20B25 2.5-Liter Inline 6-Cylinder Engine

Transmission: 4-Speed Electro-Hydraulic Transmission with Sport Mode

Exterior color: Alpine White Exterior (146)

Interior: Indigo (Blue) Leather Interior

Additional features:

Sport Seats

Heated Seats

Heated Washer Nozzles

Leather Sport Steering Wheel

Map Light Mirror

Rear Arm Rest

Rear Headrests

Sony CDX-GT10W Stereo

Factory Tweeters

Tinted Windows

ACS Kopi Rear Apron

Bosch HID Projector Headlights (non-smiley)

HID Fog lights

15” Borbet Type C Wheels

Nokian WR Tires

All Maintenance Items Up to Date

Japanese Domestic Market (same as European) with Highly Desirable Options

25-Year Rule Exempt

Clean Carfax

Colorado Title

1988 BMW (E30) 325iX JDM Sedan exterior photo

Background

The 1984-1991 BMW 3 Series, known generationally as the E30, is the one model more than any other that earned BMW the Ultimate Driving Machine reputation. E30s are one of our specialty vehicles at Glen Shelly Auto Brokers. I have restored, rebuilt, and sorted a dozen E30’s over the years and currently own three 1989 E30’s including an IX, an IS and a Touring. The “iX” was released to the U.S. market for the 1988 model year, however European market examples were released two years earlier. Japanese domestic market (JDM) E30s were European-spec cars sold in Japan. The iX was BMW’s first all wheel drive model, it is simply unstoppable in the snow. What makes it so good isn’t the all-wheel drive; it’s the E30’s perfectly balanced and telepathically communicative chassis. It is light, tossable, and wonderfully controllable. Adding all-wheel drive to the mix only makes the iX that much better. Limited production numbers and exposure to the cold weather climates they often live in have decimated the iX’s population, making clean examples very rare.

European market iX’s received options never available in US, one of the best (for automatic cars) was option code 201—the 3-mode driving program selector, which controls a 4HP22-AA electro-hydraulic automatic transmission. Select S for sport mode and the transmission will automatically delay upshifts to hold the RPMs in the power band and will proactively downshift when slowing down. US-spec automatic iX’s are noticeably slower than manual iX’s, but the selectable drive modes combined with the electro-hydraulic transmission completely negates this on a Euro-spec car with option code 201. For 1980’s technology, it is surprisingly effective and completely transforms the driving experience of an automatic transmission equipped iX.

 exterior photo

Summary

This 1988 European market 325iX came to us via Japan and Canada. We imported it through the 25-year exempt rule; it comes with a clean Colorado title. Besides the desirable Sport Mode option, it has other exclusive options like heated sedan sport seats (US sedans with sport seats were very rare), rear headrests, heated washer nozzles, a map light mirror, and the delightfully retro—but completely useless—cassette holder. It indicates only 87,700 miles, which is much lower mileage than the mean example available in the US market. It was imported to Canada from Japan and lived in a BMW enthusiast’s collection before we brought it to the states. In that time it was driven sparingly and treated to regular maintenance. The timing belt sticker shows it being recently replaced at 130,000 kilometers (80,0000 miles), which we confirmed as part of a complete mechanical inspection. While still in Japan it was given a high quality re-spray, in what looks to me, like Alpine White 2 and fitted with an ACS Kopi rear valance over the stock one. The paint is in excellent shape. Matching 15-inch Borbet Type C wheels wearing Nokian WR tires are mounted, but I will include a set of stock iX weaves for extra.

1988 BMW (E30) 325iX JDM Sedan exterior photo

Exterior

Alpine White is one of the best E30 colors. It complements the E30’s form and always presents fantastically, even when dirty. This iX presents even better thanks to its Euro grills, bumper trim, side markers, iS lip, iX fender flares and skirts, and an ACS Kopi Rear Apron. It has received a high-quality re-paint in Alpine White II. The paint is in excellent condition with no glaring defects; no failed clear coat or chips. Euro and JDM cars never got VIN tags, but all panels are original and there is no evidence of accidents. Underneath the Kopi rear apron the stock rear valance is present, but it does have one superficial dent—which is irrelevant. There is virtually no rust underneath; common spots like the lower windshield cowling, fenders, and floorboards are all clean. The only exceptions are a small spot in the battery tray and front left jack point (pics are on our website if you are reading this elsewhere). All trim is in place and in good condition. The retractable antenna is manual, which means it won’t break like the automatic ones do. We refinished the brake ducts in a slightly whiter color. We replaced the windshield, as a result it has no cracks or pitting. The side and rear window glass are tinted, which has protected the interior and looks great. The front side window glass is lighter than the rear side window glass and rear window. The headlights are Bosch (non-smiley) projectors with lightly smoked protective film. The passenger side one has a thin crack, but it functions correctly. Inside the projectors are HID lamps that are also wired to HID lamps in the factory fog lights, so all turn on at the same time which leaves no shortage of brightness for an E30. The fog light lenses are crack-free. The 15-inch Borbet wheels are color matched—which is solidly JDM. I like them much more in person than I do in photographs. They are wrapped in Nokian WR snow tires with over 50% tread remaining.

 interior photo

Interior

The interior is in excellent condition. Indigo Blue sport leather is a rare interior color that looks fantastic and it complements the Alpine White II wonderfully. There are no odors and it has never been smoked in. The carpet has no tears and just very mild discoloration on the driver’s side. Clean E30 sport seats are hard to come by and rare in a sedan; these are in very good condition and are heated—which works. The driver’s seat has two areas of broken piping on the outer bolsters (pics on our website), but overall looks great. The passenger seat is in great shape. All seat adjustments work, we rebuilt the recline shocks and locking mechanicsm. The rear seat is in great condition, as are the door cards. The dashboard is crack-free, rare for any E30. The map light mirror was an original and highly desirable option; both lights work on command. The 3-spoke steering wheel looks great, with minor leather wear. All instrument cluster functions work and all Euro-spec gauges are in place, except for a US-spec MPG display below the tachometer. We repaired several bad grounds in the cluster, but couldn’t salvage the L/100KM portion. It is included with the sale. The odometer gears and trip meter function correctly. The Euro front and rear fog light switch is present, but it doesn’t work because the fogs are wired into the headlight switch. The 6-button onboard computer works. The Sony CDX-GT10W stereo sounds great through the premium sound speakers and has an aux input. The heat blows warm and the air conditioning blows cold thanks to a fresh re-charge with R12. The shifter leather shifter is nice, but the handle underneath has a little slop. The transmission mode selector works in Sport, Economy, and 321. The power windows and sunroof work correctly, as does the central locking system. The trunk is clean and the toolkit is complete.

 engine photo

Mechanical

In preparation for sale, we gave this E30 a complete inspection and service. We replaced a sticky starter solenoid, leaking power steering lines, flushed the power steering fluid, and gave it a fresh oil change with Castrol semi-synthetic 20W-50. We replaced the smaller Euro-spec radiator with a large automatic US radiator, then replaced the thermostat and fan clutch and bled the cooling system. The last order of business was a front end alignment. The engine fires on command, idles smoothly, and pulls super strong to redline. The transmission shifts smoothly and on command in all of the selectable modes. The drivetrain is quiet with no excessive whine or vibrations. There are slight oil seeps at the valve cover gasket, cam seal, transmission output shaft, and rear diff seals (all common issues). None are significant and we can address any or all for extra cost, but I opted to price this iX as low as possible. None of the seeps leave spots on the garage floor. The suspension is firm yet compliant, with no creaks or noise. The ride height is lower than stock for an iX with what looks like either non-IX E30 springs or aftermarket springs, but I couldn’t find a part number on them. They are dampened by Bilstein HD shocks. All suspension bushings are in good shape. Catalytic converters are fitted with a Euro-spec single tip muffler in very good condition. The muffler is welded to the cats, but any competent exhaust shop could replace it with the muffler of your choice for cheap.

Overall this 325iX is an excellent example with very desirable and unique options. There is no better daily driver than an AWD E30 sedan—my personal DD is a 1989 325iX sedan and it makes me smile every time I drive it. The E30’s connected and communicative chassis is unparalleled and the sedan’s extra doors add rigidity and utility. When the snow falls, the iX destroys the white stuff like an ‘80s cocaine habit. We would like to find a buyer who will care for and enjoy this unique E30 for years to come.

 exterior photo

VIN Decode

VIN Decode

  • VIN: WBAAE010902026019
  • Type: AE01
  • Model: 325iX – Europe
  • Development Code: E30 (16)
  • Chassis: LIM
  • Steering: LL
  • Doors: 4
  • Engine: M20
  • Displacement: 2.50
  • Power: 168 Horsepower
  • Drivetrain: AWD
  • Transmission: Automatic
  • Color: Alpine White (146)
  • Upholstery: Indigo Leather (0293)
  • Production Plant: Regensburg
  • Production Date: 12-2-1987

Options

  • 201 3 Driving Programs, 4-Speed Automatic
  • 219 Sport Leather Steering Wheel
  • 296 Td-LM Wheels
  • 314 Heated Windscreen Washer Nozzles
  • 350 Heat Green Screen Glass Protection All Windows (tint)
  • 401 Power Sunroof
  • 411 Power Windows
  • 481 Sport Seats
  • 494 Heated Seats
  • 497 Center Armrest in Rear
  • 530 Air Conditioning
  • 556 Exterior Temperature Display
  • 562 Map Light Mirror
  • 690 Cassette Holder
  • 850 Add Fuel Tank Filling For Export
  • 853 Language Version English
  • 860 Turn Signal Lights Front
  • 945 Beruecks. Price Dependency
  • 979 Suede Floor Mats