96 BMW 318is

I've found the bmw I'm most likely going to get its a 1996 BMW 318is and I was fortunate enough to find one with only 48k miles on it. There is only one problem with it, the right brake light doesn't work
so a circuit board or something needs to be replaced which doesnt really worry me. I was wondering if anyone had any insight to things I should keep an eye on as well for this car. Also I noticed that it has an A & M switch which I'm guessing is the Auto/Manual Switch- Anyone know where you doing the shifting at after entering manual.
Thanks, Brandon
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

The brake lights are an ongoing problem, but usually easy to fix. The bulb is in a removable socket under a plastic cover accessed easily in the trunk. You can touch up the contacts with fine sandpaper or an emory board, and bend the contacts up a little. New sockets are pretty reasonable from the dealer. My 92 and 94 both needed ball joints, and handled much better after replacement. I got the whole control arm from the dealer with the new ball joints already installed in them. Both my cars also needed a new pump for the windshield washer. The factory part is costly, but I found that a "universal" pump from Walmart works just fine for something like $8. Both cars also have parts of the instrument backlighting out, but I've never bothered to see how hard it is to find the bulbs back there. One car had a problem with the ignition switch which I understand is common. The warnng chime would not go off when the key was removed, and sometimes the key was hard to turn or remove. I read that a little pin insidee breaks. You have to replace all the locks and have the new key matched to the security system to fix it, but over time the problem went away. I guess the broken part finally disintegrated. Otherwise, both have been extremely trouble-free cars for me. The A/M switch prevents the transmission from shifting, and use use the regular shift lever to select the gear you want. I have found it useful in the mountains, but seldom use it otherwise. Good luck, and enjoy for BMW!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Before you buy it drive a six cylinder version. The 318iS has a good engine but the automatic tranny strangles it.
--
Who needs a life when you've got Unix? :-)
Email: snipped-for-privacy@unixnerd.demon.co.uk, John G.Burns B.Eng, Bonny Scotland
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.