20k: Seller Sub: 1999 BMW M Coupe

Ahh, the E36 M Coupe. Was it designed by the architect who built a house for the little old lady who had so many children she didn’t know what to do?  Most certainly not– the M Coupe was developed by an elite team of BMW engineers, led by a madman named Burkhard Göschel.  The team did not like the floppy rear end of the Z3 convertible and grafted a shooting brake style rear onto the car that allegedly increased torsional rigidity by 2.7 times.  The resulting car is now something of a legend among BMW fanboys and prices are going up fast.  Find this 1999 BMW M Coupe offered for $20,000 in Los Angeles, CA via craigslist.  Seller submission from Alex V. 

The M-shoe was polarizing when it was first released, with a contingent of stodgy old (and young!) dudes clamoring out about it being ugly. Thankfully, BMW released a crop of Banglized butts and something called i-Drive that gave the unwashed masses something else to bitch about, because the M Coupe is wicked no matter how much it resembles a clown shoe.

The standard skinny Z3 was powered by the E36s basic selection of inline fours and sixes, but the M Coupe got Kardashian sized fender flares and the powerful S52 I-6 from the M3.  The US market S52 puts out 240 horsepower from its 3.2 liters and its quite a few ponies down from the European version, but it pays dividends in reliability. Out of all the things to worry about falling apart on your BMW, the S52 isn’t one of them.  The coolant expansion tank, rear subframe bushings, water pump impeller — those are the parts to keep you up at night — but Great News Everyone! — the seller has recently serviced all of these potentially troublesome items.

With 115k miles on the odometer and a nice looking exterior, this M Coupe looks to be a great way for any BMW fanboy or genuine driving enthusiast to get into a car that is rarer than the E30 M3…and is also faster, drives better and costs less.  As an added bonus, it even uses the tail-happy semi trailing arm rear suspension from the E30 generation 3 Series instead of the multilink setup found in the E36 sedan & coupe, so you can have your satisfying E36 cake with nostalgic E30 sprinkles too.

See a better car for carving up Mulholland or cruising down Hollywood Blvd with equal ease? tips@dailyturismo.com