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Let's name some 30 year old daily drivers

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    Let's name some 30 year old daily drivers

    So I am just shocked really that my stock spec 1989 325i (build date 10/88) remains a rock solid daily driver. It has been continuously on the road for over eight years and was preceded by a nearly identical 1989 325i that served ten years before being sold in running condition to a non-mechanical friend. I even gave it to my mom for a couple of years (2016-2017ish) with no problems/breakdowns because I was living in the city and mostly commuted by bike. No worries! So my question is: what are some other makes and models that remain rock solid daily drivers, available across the country that could serve as well as the M20B25 powered E30? Okay Californians - you guys have no rust, so please keep that in mind - the car must hold up to rust as well as a late model E30.

    #2
    80s and 90s FWD Corollas

    e30 or bust...
    "Time doesn't heal anything... It just teaches us how to live with the pain." - My Cracked Dashboard

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      #3
      I see 1990-93 Accords pretty often - even here in Philly. They look like hell, but they are running.
      R135 /// 1990 Alpinwei├č II 325is
      └┼┼┘ /// 1993 Black/Black Convertible (sold)
      ..24

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        #4
        I daily ed my 85' 323i for a number of years. Rebuilt the top end of the engine and did a manual conversion with all new parts, and gave the rest of the car a once over when i first got it, for a few months it was doing 256km per day as i drove to a construction site and back. never missed a beat. But the AC broke and its kind of annoying getting my kid in the back with the FD rx7 seats.

        Current daily now is a 2003 subaru impreza (just an "RV", with the crappy sohc 2L ej motor - non turbo) with 260,000kms on it. which was supposed to be a stop gap before getting a better daily but this thing just keeps going. I do have it apart at the moment for a new clutch but ive spent nothing on it for 2yrs or so (except oil changes, oh i think i changed the air filter...). It does need new tyres....



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          #5
          Ford F250.

          Toyota FJ60

          t
          now, sometimes I just mess with people. It's more entertaining that way. george graves

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            #6
            Toyota Tacoma

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              #7
              Daily drove a 1986 VW GTI for a couple of years (the car was 23 years old when I got it) and then gave it to my brother, when I could no longer be bothered to give the car constant attention. He used it as a daily for a few years, and it now sits inoperative, and unmoved for well over a year. Haven't seen another A2 Golf on the road in about six months, and don't expect that my old GTI will ever see the road again.

              Should add that M42 powered cars, both my first E30, a 91 318i, and my current daily, a 95 318ti have been the most trouble free cars I have owned. The E30 left me stranded twice (both times within easy walking distance of home) in about seven years of regular use, and the E36 has given four years of perfect service.

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                #8
                I daily my E30, but if you want something more comfy nothing will beat a 190e
                Simon
                Current Car:
                -2003 Mini Cooper
                -1968 Datsun Roadster 2000
                Previous Car Count : 23 ... and climbing...

                Make R3V Great Again -2020

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                  #9
                  There are plenty of 30 year old cars that make good, reliable daily drivers. What sets the E30 apart is the combination of factors that make it good. Simple, reliable, easy to work on, good aftermarket, light weight, RWD, strong drivetrain from the factory, good handling.
                  • All manner of Hondas and Toyotas form that era are practically unkillable and very cheap to run, but they're god awful FWD shitboxes and the ones with performance potential are very expensive.
                  • Volvo 240s and 740s are bulletproof after '87 when they stopped having biodegradable engine wiring insulation, but if you want to mod; the transmissions are weak as hell, the axles are barely any better, and the handling is not great and doesn't have as much aftermarket, rust is no more of an issue than on E30s.
                  • Mercedes Benz knew how to make a reliable and solidly built car back then, but they're mostly heavy barges and the lighter ones have limited aftermarket.
                  • Saabs are solid cars, but are FWD.
                  • Just about any late '80s/early '90s pickup is reliable, easy to work on and cheap to own. But it's a truck and probably beat and rusted to hell.
                  @turbovarg
                  '91 318is, M20B25, T3/T04E 60 trim (15psi), megasquirt, coilovers, Z3 rack, cold AC
                  [b u i l d]
                  [Car of the month: April 2018]

                  0c8b7c9527af628a346878feb14bf757

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                    #10
                    Still running an e28 535i personally. While an auto e28 is the exact opposite of fast, it does get me where I need to go, comfortably.
                    IMG_0145 by Jonathan Martin, on Flickr

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                      #11
                      87 yugo. i don't have one....but you should.
                      sigpic
                      Gigitty Gigitty!!!!

                      88 cabrio becoming alpina b6 3.5s transplanted s62
                      92 Mtech 2 cabrio alpinweiss 770 code
                      88 325ix coupe manual lachsilber/cardinal
                      88 325ix coupe manual diamondschwartz/natur
                      87 e30 m3 for parts lachsilber/cardinal(serial number 7)
                      12 135i M sport cabrio grey/black

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                        #12
                        Originally posted by flyboyx View Post
                        87 yugo. i don't have one....but you should.
                        I prefer my shitboxes to be French, so Le Car for me.

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                          #13
                          Saw a Holden (Isuzu) Gemini being daily driven today in 111F - hopefully the AC was still working! Basically GM's lame alternative to the e30 :) At least they are RWD. In the states the coupe version of these was sold as the Isuzu I-Mark I think. The original 70s coupe & sedan weren't bad looking, but tarting up the front and rear for the 80s & strangling the weedy 1.6L with emissions equipment made for a pretty poor result. There was even a diesel in response to the fuel crisis, which was the slowest car on the market at the time 0 - 100km/h in 19.2 seconds!

                          Click image for larger version  Name:	holden_gemini_1983_petrol_1983_gemini_classic_car_8170094577455229900.jpg Views:	0 Size:	56.5 KB ID:	9902305
                          My e30: OEM+ with M30B35

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                            #14
                            Originally posted by flyboyx View Post
                            87 yugo. i don't have one....but you should.
                            I was actually thinking about a Trabant

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                              #15
                              Surprised XJs haven't made the list. They're solid, but gas mileage is pretty meh.

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