Welcome to Found, a series where classic goods are handpicked by Gear Patrol‘s writers and editors and ready are for a good home.
Few cars can boast being the industry standard in their segment. Fewer cars still can boast that superlative across every one of its generations — but the M3 is one of those cars. From the E30 in 1985 all the way to the current F80 — each one is the template for what sports cars should be. It’s no surprise, then, that when a new M3 is unveiled, competitors like Mercedes, Audi, Cadillac and Lexus pick one up to benchmark their own cars. But why should they have all the fun? Now’s your chance to own a piece of every generation M3.
What we like: First generation M3s have enjoyed collector’s status for a few years now, so any E30 in good condition with a reasonable price tag is worth a look. This particular example also has a few modest upgrades to sweeten the deal.
From the seller: “This highly desirable and collectible E30 BMW M3 has 113,500 miles on it. It was purchased it back in 2009 from a local buyer in Colorado and has remained here the past 7 years.”
Location: Denver, Colorado,
What we like: The second-generation M3 is easily the most overlooked. It doesn’t have the flared arches of the original, or countless M badges, but it was the first M3 to get a straight six, which makes it a true sleeper car. The Canadian Edition here is essentially the more powerful Euro-spec M3 we never got in the States, which only ups its sleeper status.
From the seller: “Offered for sale is a 1994 BMW M3 ‘Euro Spec’ Limited Canadian Edition car, number 5 of just 45 European specification cars imported to North America by BMW Canada. Unlike the standard E36 M3 variants imported to the USA and Canada from 1995-1999, the 1994 limited production run for the Canadian market-only featured the venerable 3.0-liter S50B30 engine from the European market M3.”
Location: Miami, Florida
What we like: Normally we wouldn’t recommend an SMG-equipped M3, but finding an E46 with low miles, in respectable condition and a low price tag is near impossible. And besides, this is a convertible, so it’s designed for cruising anyway.
From the seller: “No accidents, immaculately maintained, almost new tires, just serviced, runs perfect and very fun car to drive.”
Location: Mesquite, Nevada
What we like: The E90/92/93 generation could easily be considered first modern M3. With a V8 up front it brings modern power and torque, as well. But since this generation is still relatively new, finding one at this price point is a gift, especially considering all the factory options included.
From the seller: “Jet black exterior over black Novillo leather interior and optioned with the technology package.”
Location: Skokie, Illinois
What we like: This is basically a brand-new M3.
From the seller: “Optioned with Executive package as well as the Driver Assistance package.”
Location: Marietta, Georgia