In 1991, BMW revitalized the 4 cylinder 3 series in the U.S via the 318i, which was able to bring E30 prices to below $20k for the first time since 1986. While Americans usually prefer more cylinders, BMW thought they could capture some of the M3’s energy and appeal at a much more modest price point
The 318i was only offered in 4 door configuration, while the 318is was coupe only. The 4 door 318i weighs 55 lbs more than the coupe @ 2,657 lbs
As the 318i models were the cheapest model of the E30 range, no automatic transmission was offered. All 318i and 318is cars are 5spd only
The low weight not only makes the car nimble, but it allows for incredible braking performance. Stopping from 60 mph to zero requires only 100 ft – substantially better than the Porsche 911 and Corvette of the same era
The available 318is trim was a $1,600 option – for that, you get the M-Technic chassis (thicker sway bars front and rear, M-Technik dampers, and the same basket-weave (Style 5) wheels from the 325is
The DOHC 16v M42 engine uses 4 valves per cylinder (just like the M3) and revs to 6400 RPM, making peak power at a stout 6,000. And unlike the 6 cylinder (M20) 325i, the M42 uses a timing chain instead of a timing belt
Key Model Year Changes:
First and only year of the M42-powered 318i/318is in the U.S.
Electronic central locking (with deadbolt) was added this year to the entire E30 range, as well as a new Master key. Front passenger receives automatic seatbelt tensioner
79k original miles
One owner until early 2021
Powertrain is completely unmodified
Interior is near perfect (9.9 out of 10)
All books, manuals, brochures, radio code, BMW cassette tape included
Spent its life in Cincinnati, OH
Heat and A/C work great
SRS light ON, Needs steering intermediate shaft, and has a couple of small cosmetic imperfections
New fuel pump, battery, exhaust, plugs/wires, crank/cam sensor, IAC, thermostat, coolant flush, DME relay, rear tires, and more
CONTACT SELLER – Update: Seller’s Craigslist ad has been deleted (sold or removed from market)
*SAE rated from factory. May not reflect current output.
*Performance numbers pulled from either the factory brochure or reputable automotive road tests.
*Base price when new does not reflect original MSRP of this particular car, nor does it reflect what the original owner paid for it.
*Advertised price at time of posting. Sellers can raise or lower prices on their original ad at any time. Click on the original ad to view current price/availability.
Mileage Disclaimer: NOC has not confirmed if the mileage stated by the seller is true and accurate. It is up to the buyer to verify these claims. Vehicle history reports, service records stating mileage, and even inspections of odometer tampering are recommended.