carmudgeons.com  

Go Back   carmudgeons.com > Automotive Forums > Car Talk

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-30-2021, 05:22 AM   #1
3LOU5
Slacker Extraordinaire
 
3LOU5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Reno, NV
Posts: 3,352
Should I keep looking ??

So as many of you are aware, I've been searching (though not very hard I'm afraid) for a pre-owned Miata that is 2010 or newer.

However, I came across this ad in the Facebook Marketplace for a 2003 BMW Z4.

The description:

"Relatively low miles for age and only 20k in past 5 years.
Mechanically sound but air bag sensor may need replacement. Tires almost new. Convertible top has some wear spots. Interior leather is in reasonably good condition but is ‘aging gracefully’. Body has a few minor chips and scratches as expected mostly on front end due to highway ‘road rash’. No accident history that I am aware of. Clean title. You will absolutely enjoy this fun, quick little roadster! "

The car has 146k miles on it and the owner is asking $3800.

Here is the link:

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...0428360536246/

Many of you also know that I have been driving my current E46 since September 2002. I've been performing maintenance on this car since it was new, so I'm pretty familiar with the 2.5L that's in the Z4.

I guess my questions are:

(1) If you were me (with an E46 and all), would you purchase this 'vert, or do you think the driving experience would be pretty much the same, and

(2) What would be a good counteroffer to the asking price without insulting the owner ??
__________________
2016 Toyota Sienna SE - hers
2002 BMW 325i - his
1994 Chevrolet Silverado K1500 Sportside Z71 - whoevers vehicle is in the shop
2009 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL883 Low (Vivid Black) - his
2018 Can-Am Spyder RT Limited - hers
2007 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL883 Low (Pearl White) - hers (SOLD 02/29/20)
2011 Tao Tao 50 - whoevers bike is in the shop
2007 Reinell 186 FNS - the dog's
1995 Fleetwood Flair 27R - EVERYBODY'S !
3LOU5 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2021, 06:38 AM   #2
Nick M3
Relic
 
Nick M3's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Bethesda, MD
Posts: 11,120
My memory of the Z4 was that it was quite a bit more entertaining than the E46. If you can get over the looks, I’m sure it would be amusing.
__________________
2011 M3
2006 Sierra 2500HD 4WD LBZ/Allison
2004 X5 3.0i 6MT
1995 M3 S50B32
1990 325is
1989 M3 S54B32

Hers:
1989 325iX
1996 911 Turbo


Nick M3 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2021, 08:35 AM   #3
clyde
Chief title editor
 
clyde's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 25,694
My first gen Z4 experience was quite some time ago, pretty limited, and was with a 3.0, so keep that in mind. Agree with Nick that it should be more engaging than the E46, but...meh. I wasn't very enamored with it when it was brand new. It provided a solid driving experience, but it was kinda numb and not as fun as I thought a car like that should be. At 2900 pounds or so, it's not super heavy, but it's not really light, either. Like, Z3s are not great cars in a lot of ways, but its flaws make them kinda lively and fun. The Z4 addressed the Z3's shortcomings which made it a "better" car, but that also prevented it from having much personality.

Miatas, OTOH are much more elemental, direct, and engaging to the point of producing the benchmark convertible sports car experience. The NC would be my fourth pick of Miata generations, but I'd definitely choose one over a Z4. At 2,500 pounds, they're pretty light. There is all the aftermarket support in the world for it...no matter what kind of simple and mile or wild and crazy kind of thing you may want to do with it. There's a huge community and tons of knowledge to tap. Parts are plentiful and cheap. Cars are easy to work on. And when you're driving them, they feel like cars should feel. Not great for freeway cruises of any distance, but short of that, if it's about driving, the Miata is the answer.

All that said, if you don't think you'll find a Miata quickly and this car is solid, buy it and see what you think. If you don't love it, keep looking for a Miata and enjoy the Z4 until you find one, then sell the Z4.

No idea what Z4 market pricing is like right now, or what that car might be worth. Do some research to see what others are asking and subtract about 25% from that to give yourself a nominal target for that type of car. Where does the asking price on this car fit in compared to the others? High, low, or middle, factor that in. When you inspect and drive the car, note anything that will cost you time and/or money to fix and reduce your target price by about half what you guess it will cost to fix. Whatever that final target is, subtract $200 more and make that your initial offer. It's negotiation from there to a number you're happy with. For a car in this price range, it's probably worth overpaying a couple hundred bucks to get it done so you can stop looking. Finding the right low-cost older car can be tough. When you find it, you don't want to let it slip away over a small amount of money.
__________________
OH NOES!!!!!1 MY CAR HAS T3H UND3R5T33R5555!!!!!!1oneone!!!!11

Team WTF?!
What are you gonna do?
clyde is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2021, 10:29 AM   #4
Josh (PA)
Hello.
 
Josh (PA)'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Carmudgeonly Ride: '11 135i C, '17 c2, '19 S213
Location: Downingtown, PA
Posts: 4,469
I always enjoyed the first gen z4s and think they along with 6cyl z3s are the roadster bargains on the market currently. Having said that, any BMW of that era is probably going to be pretty tired if hasn't had a suspension refresh, plus all the cooling maintenance, etc could double or triple the cost of that car pretty quickly. I would want a lot of history info on the car or be ready to put a bunch of time and money into it to get it back to "good"
__________________
Josh (PA) -
`19 E450 Wagon
'17 991.2 C2 Cab
'11 135i Convertible
Josh (PA) is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2021, 11:06 AM   #5
JST
195
 
JST's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 22,791
Yeah, agree with Clyde and the other Josh. I don’t think I’d spend the money needed to get a cheap Z4 back into shape.

I’d keep looking for a Miata.
JST is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2021, 01:00 PM   #6
Alan
Carmudgeon
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 3,643
Quote:
Originally Posted by JST View Post
Yeah, agree with Clyde and the other Josh. I don’t think I’d spend the money needed to get a cheap Z4 back into shape.

I’d keep looking for a Miata.
Alan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-31-2021, 02:36 AM   #7
equ
Alphanumeric
 
equ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Carmudgeonly Ride: 981S, 340i
Posts: 9,275
I'm sure it's at a different price point, but my favorite z4 is the 06+ 3.0si with the n52 engine of the 2006 330i. That's a fun little car with the right amount of pep and sound.
equ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2021, 04:54 AM   #8
3LOU5
Slacker Extraordinaire
 
3LOU5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Reno, NV
Posts: 3,352
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick M3 View Post
My memory of the Z4 was that it was quite a bit more entertaining than the E46. If you can get over the looks, I’m sure it would be amusing.
Imho, I don't think it looks THAT bad. I favor its looks over the Z3 actually.
__________________
2016 Toyota Sienna SE - hers
2002 BMW 325i - his
1994 Chevrolet Silverado K1500 Sportside Z71 - whoevers vehicle is in the shop
2009 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL883 Low (Vivid Black) - his
2018 Can-Am Spyder RT Limited - hers
2007 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL883 Low (Pearl White) - hers (SOLD 02/29/20)
2011 Tao Tao 50 - whoevers bike is in the shop
2007 Reinell 186 FNS - the dog's
1995 Fleetwood Flair 27R - EVERYBODY'S !
3LOU5 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2021, 04:58 AM   #9
3LOU5
Slacker Extraordinaire
 
3LOU5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Reno, NV
Posts: 3,352
Quote:
Originally Posted by clyde View Post
My first gen Z4 experience was quite some time ago, pretty limited, and was with a 3.0, so keep that in mind. Agree with Nick that it should be more engaging than the E46, but...meh. I wasn't very enamored with it when it was brand new. It provided a solid driving experience, but it was kinda numb and not as fun as I thought a car like that should be. At 2900 pounds or so, it's not super heavy, but it's not really light, either. Like, Z3s are not great cars in a lot of ways, but its flaws make them kinda lively and fun. The Z4 addressed the Z3's shortcomings which made it a "better" car, but that also prevented it from having much personality.

Miatas, OTOH are much more elemental, direct, and engaging to the point of producing the benchmark convertible sports car experience. The NC would be my fourth pick of Miata generations, but I'd definitely choose one over a Z4. At 2,500 pounds, they're pretty light. There is all the aftermarket support in the world for it...no matter what kind of simple and mile or wild and crazy kind of thing you may want to do with it. There's a huge community and tons of knowledge to tap. Parts are plentiful and cheap. Cars are easy to work on. And when you're driving them, they feel like cars should feel. Not great for freeway cruises of any distance, but short of that, if it's about driving, the Miata is the answer.

All that said, if you don't think you'll find a Miata quickly and this car is solid, buy it and see what you think. If you don't love it, keep looking for a Miata and enjoy the Z4 until you find one, then sell the Z4.

No idea what Z4 market pricing is like right now, or what that car might be worth. Do some research to see what others are asking and subtract about 25% from that to give yourself a nominal target for that type of car. Where does the asking price on this car fit in compared to the others? High, low, or middle, factor that in. When you inspect and drive the car, note anything that will cost you time and/or money to fix and reduce your target price by about half what you guess it will cost to fix. Whatever that final target is, subtract $200 more and make that your initial offer. It's negotiation from there to a number you're happy with. For a car in this price range, it's probably worth overpaying a couple hundred bucks to get it done so you can stop looking. Finding the right low-cost older car can be tough. When you find it, you don't want to let it slip away over a small amount of money.
Thanks for such a detailed reply, Clyde.

I was actually set on taking it for a test drive, but decided against it for fearing of plunking down some cash for a vehicle that really wasn't my top choice.

Also, I'm not one of those that keeps a car for a short duration. This Z4 would have probably made me do that.
__________________
2016 Toyota Sienna SE - hers
2002 BMW 325i - his
1994 Chevrolet Silverado K1500 Sportside Z71 - whoevers vehicle is in the shop
2009 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL883 Low (Vivid Black) - his
2018 Can-Am Spyder RT Limited - hers
2007 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL883 Low (Pearl White) - hers (SOLD 02/29/20)
2011 Tao Tao 50 - whoevers bike is in the shop
2007 Reinell 186 FNS - the dog's
1995 Fleetwood Flair 27R - EVERYBODY'S !
3LOU5 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2021, 04:59 AM   #10
3LOU5
Slacker Extraordinaire
 
3LOU5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Reno, NV
Posts: 3,352
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh (PA) View Post
I always enjoyed the first gen z4s and think they along with 6cyl z3s are the roadster bargains on the market currently. Having said that, any BMW of that era is probably going to be pretty tired if hasn't had a suspension refresh, plus all the cooling maintenance, etc could double or triple the cost of that car pretty quickly. I would want a lot of history info on the car or be ready to put a bunch of time and money into it to get it back to "good"
I hear you about the maintenance.

I already have enough of a hard time keeping my E46 in perfect running condition, and really do not want a "project" car.
__________________
2016 Toyota Sienna SE - hers
2002 BMW 325i - his
1994 Chevrolet Silverado K1500 Sportside Z71 - whoevers vehicle is in the shop
2009 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL883 Low (Vivid Black) - his
2018 Can-Am Spyder RT Limited - hers
2007 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL883 Low (Pearl White) - hers (SOLD 02/29/20)
2011 Tao Tao 50 - whoevers bike is in the shop
2007 Reinell 186 FNS - the dog's
1995 Fleetwood Flair 27R - EVERYBODY'S !
3LOU5 is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:37 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Forums © 2003-2008, 'Mudgeon Enterprises - Site hosting by AYN & Associates, LLC