1989 BMW 325ix Touring

1989 BMW 325ix Touring


Status: Sold to Bo B., Nashville TN
Manufactured: Germany
Imported: Zaragoza, Spain
Engine: 2.5L six-cylinder  
Transmission: 5-Speed Manual

One of my first cars after college was an E30 BMW. Mine was a 318i. A 1987, if I recall correctly. With the help of a good friend I found it down in Kentucky, picked it up for $400, got a new alternator installed, and was off to the races. Mine was special too; some wise soul had removed the paltry four-cylinder M40 engine and replaced it with the 325i’s mighty M20 six-cylinder. It was a little two-door E30 that felt like the fastest thing I’d ever owned. It also helped that my insurance company still thought it was a four-cylinder, meaning my premium on a 20+ year old car was almost laughable. It was my first E30, and it became an expression of freedom, and connectivity to the car world as my hands got dirty, bikes got loaded, and I made the world my own. Sadly, the mechanical prowess of the motor belied the car’s true condition, as everything from windows, air condition, gauges, and even the radio didn’t work. But hell. I was 22. It was perfect.

Time marched on and the BMW changed hands. I found my way into other BMWs and eventually moved into station wagons. The wagon became my secret as life seemingly required compromises getting older. Need space for the dog? Car seats? Bikes and gear? “Grow up; get a bigger car.” Fine, I’ll do it. But you can’t tell me what motor to put in there. The love affair for me peaked with a 2000 BMW 540i Touring. The 4.4L V8 could move, baby, just move.

BMW’s E30 325ix Touring is an early expression of this freedom. Put yourself back in 1989, walking into the BMW dealership in Madrid. You tell the salesman, “I need space for the kids and their junk. But I still want to get up and go; I’m not ready to lay down and buy the minivan. And while we’re at it, imagine if you had something that could get me into the mountains when it’s snowing, and out to the trails when it’s not. Got anything that scratches that itch?” A wry little grin would pull across his face, and he’d pull you off to the side and show you the 325ix Wagon. It is thinly veiled compromise, a-la the 1980’s: 168 hp from a six-cylinder bolted to a satisfying five-speed, with an absolutely timeliness design (that roofline…. Come on!).

We found and sourced this ’89 BMW 325ix Wagon at the request of a customer down in Tennessee. It comes to us from an enthusiast in Zaragoza, Spain, who has been lovingly restoring it to as close to showroom condition as he can get it over the past few years. Most of these have been used hard and put away wet; they were bought and built to be used, after all. An AWD show queen station wagon is an anomaly on four wheels. Ruben – Thanks for what you did to get this car just right.

So for all you fellow wagon junkies, this one is a nod to you. Keep loading them up, finding new roads and trails, with the dogs, kids, friends, or whatever moves you. Just don’t forget to give the wagon-wave when you see a kindred spirit out there on the roads. What’s the wave? Well, if you have to ask…

Driveline. The M20 starts and pulls beautifully, coaxing you up into the rev range, eager to show you just what it can do when bolted to an AWD platform. We played with scientifically researched the car and the powerplant thoroughly on some back roads near the dealership. The AWD drivetrain keeps the wagon beautifully planted and clawing it’s way through corners, while the six-cylinder works through the gearbox easily to keep the pavement flowing underneath.

Exterior. The Royal Blue Metallic paint is recent and is an interesting color on the car. The black bumpers and trim pieces begin to disappear into the blue in the right light, while the shadows and undulations you might expect to see from the wagon’s lines hide in the dark hue. Body lines are straight, and the car is rust-free. The OEM 15” BBS wheels do well to give the big (relatively speaking) car better proportions.

Interior. OEM fabric interior is present and beautifully intact. The interior is clean, straight, and undamaged. This luxury wagon even has power front windows and heated front seats. A guy could get spoiled driving this thing. An M-Sport steering wheel and shift knob give your mind all the context for sporty driving you’ll ever need as you step in and begin whatever adventure lies in front of you.

Interested? Contact Us for more information. 


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