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Calypso-E34

Do many of you run 80s / 90s cars as regular drivers?

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I'm considering the merits of giving up the modern car in favour of something older, with a bit of character.  New cars are fine things when new or under a manufacturer's warranty, but as they get older, can become unreliable, and seem to have become very expensive to maintain and repair.

 

Obviously, older cars will come with their own set of issues.  While they are mostly simpler, less time consuming and therefore cheaper to repair, I recognise that there may at times be issues with availability of parts.

 

I'm not talking about cars from the 60s / 70s, and probably not even the 80s (unless it's a Mercedes W123 200 series) - but well presented 90s cars which have been either exceptionally well looked after, or restored. Cars from that decade will be old enough to be interesting and straightforward to repair, yet new enough for things like air conditioning, ABS, parking sensors etc to have become widely available.  As I know a little about BMW cars, and I generally like the marque, this is probably where I would start, but I wouldn't necessarily rule out other marques.  It would have to be something which, with some proper care and preparation, would be capable of handling Scottish winters of course.

 

What do you all think?  I'd love to hear from any of you who run old cars on a daily basis, and whether you enjoy this, or long for a new car!

Edited by Calypso-E34

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I don't think I'd have any qualms about using any 90s BMW on a daily basis. One has to accept that you will need to give them a refresh to give you a base point but I've run 20 year old bmws daily and racked up miles with out issue. 

 

There  are always teething issues but once worked though have proven reliable.   Even taking them abroad. 96 m3 round France in 2013 and 86 m535 to France in 2010. 

 

My fear mark is you wont have the patience to work through the teething period. 

 

 

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8 minutes ago, duncan-uk said:

My fear mark is you wont have the patience to work through the teething period. 

 

 

Yes, this is something I would have to consider certainly.  Generally, I have been OK fixing up and maintaining E34 level cars, but none of those were daily drivers.  I had a lot of issues with my E39, and in the end, nice as it was and despite all the expenditure, I ditched it.  My current E34, which ranks as the lowest spec 5 I have owned so far, has been utterly reliable, and there's nothing hard to fix on it really, other than the wiper mechanism maybe.  Starts first time, every time, and it's a treat to drive.  Glacially slow of course, being the 520i automatic, but keeps up well enough.

 

A last of the line E32 would be a lovely car to own. 

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3 minutes ago, duncan-uk said:

Why not run the e34 for a month and see how you get on?

 

I've been driving it this week!  That's what has got me thinking this way. Not much wrong with it for a car of this vintage.  There's a hole in one of the headlamps, but I have a replacement, the wheels need a refurb (for which I have a voucher Mrs Calypso bought me for Christmas), and ideally, the panels which were replaced by Andy need painted again, as the colour isn't a perfect match for the Orient Blue of the rest of the car.  BUT - the air con still works!!

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Me .. all the time .. i run the Volvo S70 everyday, its still immaculate and a great place to be and if it goes wrong its usually a straightforward fix .. saying that it hasnt gone wrong in 2 years, its over 200000 miles and actually owes me nothing !I have got teh T5 now so probs teh S70 will head off soon but its one of those cars i woudl jump in and head to Holland in at any point .

 

Next up is Daniel .. he runs the compact everysingle day , its doesnt sit still , again its nearly 200000 miles

 

And i also use and 1996 Scenic that has been in eth family for years for tip runs, dog waks , piling bikes in if going to the woods.. its get general maintenance and is great too even tho its french .. i just keep on top of tehm and they do all OK ! 

 

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8 minutes ago, The Flying Banana said:

Me .. all the time .. ! 

 

 

I should have known to ask you first Scott!

 

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I had a 1990 and 1992 Honda CRX & Del Sol as my daily drivers for years 

 

Never any issues (typical Honda really) but rust was always waiting :lol:

 

TBH I've seriously considered an E34 myself too, but would love en E30 325i if I could find one! Always loved the shape etc

Edited by d_a_n1979

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the S70 cost me £300 2 years ago , its went thru 2 MOTs not needing anything but i did replace 2 tyres and wipers before it went in first time .. second time it just went thru.. I has full history and belonged to a lawyer not far from me ... if it all went wrong tomorrow then i havent lost a bean really and it will weigh in for £100 ... but it still looks smart, no rust , comfortable and i see no reason it wont trudge on for many more MOTs if i was honest

 

Even teh E39 is old now and it has huge mileage but it does go to Holland goes thru MOTs and the secret is just just keeping on top of them .. i jumped in teh E39 couple of weeks ago and headed to Oxford and back .. put diesel in and headed off .. if its going to break it will like any new car .. just easier to deal with but it hasnt either !

 

I would use your E34 everyday if it was mine :)

Edited by The Flying Banana

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Just now, d_a_n1979 said:

would love en E39 325i if I could find one! Always loved the shape etc

 

You might be waiting a while for that! :lol:

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2 minutes ago, d_a_n1979 said:

Oh cock :lol:

 

Meant an E30, bloody autocorrect :P

 

I'd like an E30 too, but to be honest, the E39 fits around me better!!

 

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I would happily run the E36 all year round if it was not a convertible.

 

Looked into getting a 323i Sport touring auto as a second car - low annual mileage and depreciation free motoring. This is still on the cards however my son is 17 in October and if still at home will need a car to learn in so the current 2011 1.25 Zetec Fiesta stays until we know what is needed.

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Probably OK for someone like me though who runs a business from home & does c4k miles a year etc. 

 

I think with a higher commute, a newer car would pay dividends etc... 

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I am a fan of the older car, when ever I see an e34 anywhere, usually when I’m driving in a different direction, I’m breaking my neck to get a better look, even the low spec work horses stand out from the crowd now! I had 4 sierras at one point, got none now unfortunately, shall we hijack this thread now and talk about sierras?

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4 minutes ago, TerryTibbs said:

shall we hijack this thread now and talk about sierras?

 

Youll only encounter very mild resistance from me Terry - I had Sierras too, from a 1.8 LX to an XR4x4 2.9, hatches, saloons and estates.  I liked them a lot!

Edited by Calypso-E34

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13 minutes ago, Calypso-E34 said:

 

Youll only encounter very mild resistance from me Terry - I had Sierras too, from a 1.8 LX to an XR4x4 2.9, hatches, saloons and estates.  I liked them a lot!

Same here my second car when I was 19 was an xr4x4 also had the 1.8lx a few xr4i a v8 sapphire and best one I had was a 1986 2.8 Ghia estate 4x4 twin turbo, a proper sleeper! Super super rare turbo technics car

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44 minutes ago, TerryTibbs said:

They fetch decent money these days

 

It had an RS three spoke steering wheel, leather seats, aircon and an amplified sound system. That twin cam engine was a nice thing too - plenty of torque I thought at the time, coming from an Orion 1600i Ghia. 

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Still using my E34 as a daily and definitely not longing for a new car. I think new cars should be painted Appliance White as they're about as exciting as a new fridge freezer ☺

Drove a newish Volvo V50 for a month last November, very civilised and easy to drive but ultimately very boring and uninvolving,  couldn't wait to get back in the E34. 

Seem to spend a lot of time in Greater London traffic these days which the E34 still copes with no problem. Just this afternoon I spent 90min doing 15 miles to work at Heathrow, poxy traffic !

Seems to get more and more attention the older it gets (now owned it 18 years), on Wednesday at 5am a lorry pulls up to my right at some traffic lights and starts sounding his horn, I'm thinking what's up with him, so look up and he's leaning right across his cab smiling and giving a thumbs up.

 

Sorry never owned a Sierra but drove lots of Cosworths back in the day. Owned many Capri's and still have the one in my sig. 

Looking to get a Puma for some cheap fun, my son bought one for £177 last month, usual rusty arches (wonder who will be doing that job, hmm),  great fun to drive though, never thought I would say that about fwd.

 

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2 hours ago, Calypso-E34 said:

 

It had an RS three spoke steering wheel, leather seats, aircon and an amplified sound system. That twin cam engine was a nice thing too - plenty of torque I thought at the time, coming from an Orion 1600i Ghia. 

an Orion 1600 injection...never had one but still want one ..needs to be red with the grey bottom half , the little fuel computer ..rear headrests ...what a car 

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