Mid Week Match-Up: A $7k Car For Oakland Jeff

It’s Wednesday, so time for another episode of Mid Week Match-Up, the weekly matching game where we help our readers pick the best car for their budget.  Today’s MWMU request comes from Oakland Jeff who writes:

The trusty BMW wagon is getting a little long
in the tooth…’02 325i (e46) with earth to the moon mileage. I talked
the wife into a lower mileage (sub 120k?) 330i with a manual trans
(woohoo!). Still has 4 doors & room for the 4 year old and
associated gear, much more fun than the slush box wagon.

is problem. Kelly blue book maxes out at around $5k but all the
craigslisters around here seem to think their car is special ($8 -12k on
up). Budget is ~$7k including purchase price and the list of things my trusted mechanic will want to do to bring it up to excellent cond., tax & lic., etc…

-Dream car is 330i 6 speed, black (ZHP is prolly too much to ask). 5 speed OK, other, non-douchey, colors OK
unlike the guy last week I’m a BMW driving tool. I’d consider other
makes but Japanese and american cars give me a rash. Anything that
smells like a VW is off the list for obvious reasons.

Not sure if I have unrealistic expectations. IF so please feel free to grab me by the lapels and shake some sense into me.


DT E-i-C Vince: The easy thing to suggest is a BMW E39 540 6-speed like this one, but instead I’m going to suggest this 2005 Cadillac CTS equipped with the 255 horsepower 3.6 liter V6 and 5-speed manual gearbox offered for $5,200 located in Fischers, IN.