At $ 23,000, Is This Supercharged ’98 BMW M3 Dinan a Super Deal?

Nice Price or No Dice 1998 BMW M3 Dinan

The seller of today’s Nice Price or No Dice M3 droptop threatens that if it doesn’t sell on Craigslist, they’ll take it to Bring a Trailer. Let’s see if we think its price tag will save them the trip.

The 2000 Jeep Cherokee two-door we looked at yesterday offered little in the way of options or extravagance which meant that it had a lot going for it as far as simplicity and ease of maintenance were concerned. Unfortunately, its parsimonious pleasures didn’t seem to extend to its asking price. At $ 7,488, that was too rich for our blood, earning the Jeep a 57 percent No Dice loss.

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We’ve all seen those old-school infomercials where a product is touted as being the best thing since bivalent booster shots only to be made even more amazing when the announcer says “but wait, there’s more.” That trigger phrase is intended to motivate fence-sitters by making the thus-described overall value much greater than initially expected.

Today’s 1998 BMW M3 convertible is a bit of a “but wait, there’s more” kind of a car. First off, it’s obviously an M3, which is a hotted-up edition of the standard 3 Series, here in E36 guise. On top of that, however, this one offers a slathering of Dinan go-faster parts that make it an even more intriguing deal.

The seller encapsulates the car’s attractions thusly:

In a nutshell, this car is super clean for the miles, an absolute beast, and a total head-turner. If you don’t like getting attention from everyone around you, this is not the car for you … lol

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According to the ad, this M3 has been “Meticulously maintained its entire life with tens of thousands of dollars worth of maintenance and repair records.” Some of that maintenance involved updating the cooling system from the OEM boobytrapped plastic bits to a Mishimoto setup as well as a recent rebuild of the Powerdyne (didn’t they make the Terminator?) Supercharger. The seller stresses that all the performance parts are California street legal, which is a considerable feat for a car with such a deep bench of engine mods.

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Altogether, the performance parts are claimed to make 300 horsepower at the rear wheels. Those wheels, by the way, are Dinan alloys and are wrapped in new Kumho rubber. There are lots of other mods on the car, which is not totally surprising considering its age. What’s a little more surprising is that the car has all of this hardware and has done 187,000 miles. That’s a lot, but they don’t seem to show in the Estoril Blau paint or the plastic bits and pieces. The bodywork appears straight, as does the fabric of the top, although the plastic rear window could stand a thorough de-yellowing.

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Other issues include some curbing on one of the wheels, a tear in the leather on the back seat squab, and the need to replace the tension straps for the top. Perhaps more worrisome than any of that, the seller says that the rear main seal has started to weep. That’s a gearbox-out job and while it’s being fixed, renewing the clutch would be a good idea too.

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Other than those issues, the car seems to be a solid citizen, although one would imagine things like bushing and bearings might need some love sometime soon. It might be worth that investment in time and future expense seeing as it’s a bit of a rare bird and is set up in a pretty decent fashion. Also, kudos to the seller for the comprehensive description (both good and bad) in the ad and for making available all the photo documentation.

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This M3 had been listed at $ 29,000 for a few weeks but apparently didn’t get any serious bites at that price. In that ad, the threat was made that if Craigslist failed to seal the deal at that price, the car was going to Bring a Trailer. It’s now been re-listed on Craigslist at $ 23,000, and it’s up to us to see whether the bites will come at that new lower price.

What do you think, is this Dinan-ized M3 convertible worth that much as it’s presented in its ad? Or, do the miles and the mods — and the price — pile too much on?

You decide!

Los Angeles, California, Craigslistor go here if the ad disappears.

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