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Thread: Is this M3 ZCP a good deal?

  1. #1
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    Question Is this M3 ZCP a good deal?

    Hey all, I'm new to this forum and have a few questions about an 05 M3 that is for sale locally. I would appreciate your subject matter expertise and help with letting me know if you believe this car is a good deal.

    The M3 is a 2005 with the ZCP Competition Package. It's had 6 owners, and currently has 108,600 miles. It started its life in California, then went to Minnesota with the 5th owner and then came South where it is now. The fact it was in the snow belt for quite a few years is a concern. However, you can tell that it has been mostly garaged and there is absolutely no rust present anywhere as well as no corrosion on the subframe. By the way, the subframe has been professionally upgraded at some point with reinforcement plates and whatever recommended upgrades are normal for the E46's rear subframe woes. The paint is Carbon Black Metallic and is original, and mostly looks very well taken care of except for the front bumper cover. There is a lot of road rash on the front bumper cover and on the front headlight lenses. However, the lenses are totally clear of fogging or hazing. The passenger side rocker cover has some clear coat starting to separate on the top, and the wheels all have a slight amount of paint coming off, but no major curb marks. The tires have at least 75% tread remaining and look good. We have a local road course in the area, and the tires show some high-heat wear on the very outside lip of the tread, so I think this car has seen a few laps. All mechanical items function perfectly, including the SMG transmission. The shifts are perfect and the different settings all work exactly as designed. Because the current owner only has his service records for the past two years, the early records are only the vague information shown on the CarFax report. There are 17 service records there, and it looks like the 4th owner went to either an Indy shop or just did oil changes themselves because there is absolutely no records of maintenance for those 4 years. The engine is as clean as I've ever seen and there are no leaks present. Also, no loud chatter from the valves, so I think they have been adjusted at some point. I have no idea if the Vanos system has been upgraded.
    The interior of the car is fantastic in all black with aluminum trim, with the back seat and passenger seat looking brand new, the headliner and pillars having no sag, the Alcantara steering wheel is barely worn, and the driver seat just has a little wear on the outside bolster. Lastly, I have checked on several BMW VIN sites to ensure it's a legit ZCP car, which it is. Also, the CarFax says the car has a clean title and there are no previous accidents. I believe it because the car drives straight, tight, and handles like it's on rails. I'm having a local Indy BMW specialist shop conduct a pre-purchase inspection next week.

    So, the owner is asking $15,500 for the car. Is this a good deal given all the information, or should I be wary of the car, and either pass, or offer much lower?


    So, here is the specs on the car:

    S1CAA Selection of COP relevant vehicles

    S210A Dynamic stability control

    S354A Green windscreen, green shade band

    S403A Glass roof, electrical

    S415A Sun-blind, rear

    S431A Interior mirror with automatic-dip

    S441A Smoker package

    S459A Seat adjuster, electric, with memory

    S473A Armrest front

    S508A Park Distance Control (PDC)

    S520A Fog lights

    S521A Rain sensor

    S522A Xenon Light

    S534A Automatic air conditioning

    S550A On-board computer

    S640A Preparation f tel.installation universal

    S645A BMW US Radio

    S650A CD player

    S661A Radio BMW Business (C43)

    S674A Hi-Fi System Harman Kardon

    S692A Preparation, BMW 6-CD changer I-bus

    S710A M leather steering wheel

    S775A Headlining anthracite

    S785A White direction indicator lights

    S793A Sequential M transmission Drivelogic

    S7MAA Competition package

    S818A Battery master switch

    S845A Acoustic belt warning

    S853A Language version English

    S876A Radio frequency 315 MHz

    S8SPA Control unit COP

    S925A Dummy-SALAPA

    S946A Dummy-SALAPA

    S992A Control of number-plate attachment

    S9AAA Outer skin protection

  2. #2
    MauiM3Mania's Avatar
    MauiM3Mania is offline Observer/Master Skeptic Moderator
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    Without the PPI, who is to know if it's a good price? I'd read up as much as possible on these cars before even looking seriously. Most of the 'specs' you list are how the cars are delivered.

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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by MauiM3Mania View Post
    Without the PPI, who is to know if it's a good price? I'd read up as much as possible on these cars before even looking seriously. Most of the 'specs' you list are how the cars are delivered.

    https://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/s...Links-and-more
    Thanks for your input. I am definitely cramming in information about these cars as much as possible lately before I jump on this purchase. I'll have a better picture of its value after the PPI is completed next week. Just hoping there is quite a bit of wiggle room from the owner on the cost.

  4. #4
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    Doesn't everyone build in a bit of wiggle?

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  5. #5
    dworthy's Avatar
    dworthy is offline Wagon meister :) BMW Tech Expert
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    As soon as you said "6 owners", I wouldn't touch a car like that.

    Basically a person owned that car for about 2 year and probably ran the hell out of it before selling it to somebody else. This can also say that those owners didn't know the cost of maintenance and when something big came up, sold the car.
    Darin
    Current:
    16 220i Active Tourer Platinsilver MET (C08)/Dakota Black (PDSW), P7ACA, P7LDA, P7LHA, P9BDA, 6sp Manual - Wife's new toy!
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    05 M3 Imolarot II(405)/Gray(N5TT) ZCW, ZPP 6sp Manual C.F. Lip, CSL diffuser, Euro Infra-Rot front windshield and a trunk liner! Mr. Go_Fast Stored for the Winter
    Past:
    95 318is Montreal Blue Met (297)/Beige(K1SN) A Hooptie!
    84 M535i gray market Burgandy Rot Met/Black Leather Lowered by Intrax on bilies, poly everywhere, B&B cat back system, K&N, and a hitch! Da Beast - Still running w/375k+!
    91 316i euro Tizianrot/Gray cloth - E-36 w/M-40 motor, such a beater, but great on gas! Best was 38 MPG
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  6. #6
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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by MauiM3Mania View Post
    Doesn't everyone build in a bit of wiggle?
    Definitely!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by dworthy View Post
    As soon as you said "6 owners", I wouldn't touch a car like that.

    Basically a person owned that car for about 2 year and probably ran the hell out of it before selling it to somebody else. This can also say that those owners didn't know the cost of maintenance and when something big came up, sold the car.
    The number of owners is one factor that concerns me a lot. If the PPI doesn't come out exceptionally clean, and if I cannot get the BMW shop to pull some of the maintenance data from their system, then I will probably pass on it. My goal is to beat on it during weekend drives around the twisty back roads and take it to the occassional open track day at our road course. I just don't want to be the schmuck that gets stuck with a major part breaking after all the good luck of the previous 6 owners ran out. Thanks for your input!

  7. #7
    dworthy's Avatar
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    When I was looking for my M3, there were several criteria that was a must:

    1) 1 or 2 owners MAX.
    2) Full service records from new.
    a) This was to look at the tires -> If rear tires were replaced every 6-8k = abused; 10-12k = driven hard; 14-16k = Normal; and 18k or higher would mean Opa driven.
    b) Ensure all the recalls/service intervals have been completed.
    3) Color, and options, and mileage.

    It took me 6 months to find the one I wanted, and that was 8 years ago when most were at the dealerships.
    Darin
    Current:
    16 220i Active Tourer Platinsilver MET (C08)/Dakota Black (PDSW), P7ACA, P7LDA, P7LHA, P9BDA, 6sp Manual - Wife's new toy!
    05 325it Electric Red(438)/Gray(N6TT) ZCW, ZSP 5sp Manual Back set cover, trunk mat, Euro Infra-Rot front windshield, and mud flaps! Mr. Wagon My new Winter car.
    05 M3 Imolarot II(405)/Gray(N5TT) ZCW, ZPP 6sp Manual C.F. Lip, CSL diffuser, Euro Infra-Rot front windshield and a trunk liner! Mr. Go_Fast Stored for the Winter
    Past:
    95 318is Montreal Blue Met (297)/Beige(K1SN) A Hooptie!
    84 M535i gray market Burgandy Rot Met/Black Leather Lowered by Intrax on bilies, poly everywhere, B&B cat back system, K&N, and a hitch! Da Beast - Still running w/375k+!
    91 316i euro Tizianrot/Gray cloth - E-36 w/M-40 motor, such a beater, but great on gas! Best was 38 MPG
    82 528i euro Saphire Blue Met/Blue Leather RIP
    79 525 euro Green/Green RIP
    79 318 Silver/Black - The first one that got it all started
    M-Flight Member

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by dworthy View Post
    When I was looking for my M3, there were several criteria that was a must:

    1) 1 or 2 owners MAX.
    2) Full service records from new.
    a) This was to look at the tires -> If rear tires were replaced every 6-8k = abused; 10-12k = driven hard; 14-16k = Normal; and 18k or higher would mean Opa driven.
    b) Ensure all the recalls/service intervals have been completed.
    3) Color, and options, and mileage.

    It took me 6 months to find the one I wanted, and that was 8 years ago when most were at the dealerships.
    That's a good plan for finding a diamond in the haystack. However, I'm not looking for a perfect version, just one clean enough that it doesn't really need anything repaired, painted, or re-upholstered. This one fits that description, plus I like Carbon Black Metallic M3s with black leather interiors and the SMG. I have driven a manual trans on 4 of my 8 vehicles, and the SMG is one neat transmission if you learn its' quirks (in my opinion). Glad you found the right one for you, Dworthy. Viel Glück für Sie mit Ihrem M3.

  9. #9
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    Ok, so the PPI is complete. The shop was thorough and provided a pretty good overall mechanical picture of the car.

    Here is the list of issues:

    Lower radiator hose chafed
    Visco Fan clutch low resistance and rusted
    Valve Cover leaking
    Oil Pan gasket leaking
    Various spots of rust underneath car
    Rear shocks (original) rusted
    Transmission rear seal leaking
    Rear control arms rusted and squeaking
    Motormounts need to be replaced
    Paint chipping on hood and on front bumper
    Transmission needs SMG update (not sure what this means)
    No indication of SMG service in history
    No indication of VANOS repair in history

    Current Fault codes:

    Boot lid mechanism, unlocking (1 fault)
    Light switch for left/right turn indicator (2 faults)
    Tank lever type sensor (1 fault)
    Steering angle sensor, internal (1 fault)
    A/C system heating (1 fault)
    Park Distance Control (1 fault)
    Driver's Mirror Memory (1 fault)


    So, I'm realizing that this is not a good car as it sits. Anyone think $10,000 USD is a good offer or is that even too high given what needs to be repaired on the car?

  10. #10
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    So, the owner came down $500USD to $15,000. I told him with all the repairs necessary per the PPI, that I could offer $13,500. He said he's not willing to go lower than $15k. So, I said, thanks but no thanks, and keep me in mind if you still have it in the next few months. So, it's back to looking for a clean M3 ZCP. This time I'll try to find a more preferred color combo with a 6MT. Thanks again for all the help!

    Jason

  11. #11
    MauiM3Mania's Avatar
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    I'm not waving the flag for this car in particular, rather questioning the reality of expecting to find a 12 year old M3 which was $60K car new for $10K today. One with zero issues, much less. To me... the number of owners is a turn off as is the paint issues, the rest of routine maintenance for a car with a 100K. Few used cars are flawless and if they are, the selling price is going to reflect that.


    I imagine that car could be parted out for much more than 10K.

    My $0.02.

    Project | 88M3 AW 43k miles OEM Shift Knob
    Auto-X | 99M3 Cosmos 60k S50B32 284° euro 6Spd 3.91
    Sat/Sun | 04M3 TiAg 65k non-sunroof 3 pedal
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  12. #12
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    6 owners could mean nothing but you've got skeptics out there. Upon your own re-selling of it, it will raise flags. That's the only value loss with 6 owners.
    108,000 miles is low but it's also an SMG. The 6-speed manual cars are soooo fun. You feel that engine on your foot better. An SMG to 6mt swap is $3,000 so the SMG is worth ~$2,000 less on average.

    The oil-pan and tranny seal are the 2 concerns for me. May as well do the rod bearings whilst in there and that's basically a grand. Then NO Vanos, subframe, SMG or Rod Bearing preventative maintenance? Your 13.5k offer was realistic if you ask me. IBlue is very desirable but I can't put a 1500 price on that alone.

    I'd keep shopping if I were you but one other thing. The PPI is done by someone who is not personally involved and can be a waste of time and money you can use to actually fix stuff. In time, you'll be able to look at a car yourself and determine the value.
    Last edited by egebhardt; 02-19-2018 at 10:07 AM.
    97 Byzanz on Magma M3/4/A - Sold 7.7.17Jerad in CO
    98 TiSilver on Black M3/4/A - Sold 7.19.17 Jono driving it
    96 Boston on Dove M3/2/5 - Sold 10.28.17 Benny and Suad
    98 Estoril on Dove M3/4/5 - Sold 9.23.13 Garrett driving it
    98 Arctic on Dove M3/4/5 - Sold - 4.2.13 - Ron driving it
    98 Estoril on Dove M3/2/5 - Sold 8.6.12 Thy driving it
    99 Estoril on Sand M3/2/5 - Sold 7.31.12 Eric driving it
    98 Arctic on Dove M3/2/5 - Sold 3.10.12 Kyle driving it
    96 Techno on Black M3/2/5-Sold 6.13.09 Ross totaled it

  13. #13
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    As many have said 6 owners doesn't necessarily mean bad car, but its usually a sign of some neglect, as having 6 good owners in a row is highly unlikely, and it appears your PPI reflected that. My opinion is pay more for a good well kept car. In my many years of owning BMWs, buying them new, used and everything in between, when buying used you look for a car with well documented maintenance and in need of little maintenance. You can show me ANY 5 year old BMW and Ill show you it needs something, so dont let a few things deter you from the right car, but when you see excessive rust, leaks, corrosion etc, then pile on multiple owners and multiple states, just keep looking. Even if the car is cheap, you still in the end will be right back to the price of a nice one after you put the money into it.
    2003.5 BMW M3 Coupe

    Options: SLICKTOP! Sterliing Gray over Black Leather, 6 MT, Manual Seats, Leather, Xenons and No Sunroof

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