1998 BMW M3 Evolution Cabriolet (E36)

83,700 mi
316 BHP



  • Rare and collectible
  • Only one previous owner
  • Purchased by the current owner in 1999
  • Hood fabric and headlining replaced
  • Well-stamped service record


The E36 became available as an M car in 1992, but it wasn’t until 1994 that the model was released with a folding fabric roof. The example we see here was sold new in ’98 then found its second owner a year later, and it has remained with this owner ever since.

And it’s easy to see why you’d want to hold onto a car like this: just have a play with that 3.2-litre straight-six engine, coupled to a six-speed transmission. Six gears in 1998. Unbelievably decadent.

This particular M3 is an ‘Evo’ model, meaning that it punches a little higher than your average M3, sending 320 hp to the rear wheels. This allows for spirited driving when the fancy takes, and you can even do so with the roof neatly stowed away, to enjoy the full open-air motoring experience.

Accompanied by a decent sized pile of paperwork, this car has been well looked after by its long-term owner. There is a very well stamped service record and it even comes with a BMW dealer sales invoice from 1999.

In all, this is a great opportunity to head back to the 90s and get a feel for the M car experience as it used to be, without all that modern electronic wizardry doing all the thinking for you.

History and documentation

  • Registered 1 Feb 1998
  • Stamped service book with services as follows: May 1998 @ 1,336 miles, Mar 1999 @ 6169 miles, Mar 2000 @ 11,750 miles, Sep 2001 @ 21,690 miles, Feb 2003 @ 29,586 miles, Jan 2004 @ 36,047 miles, Mar 2005 @ 42,563 miles, Jul 2008 @ 56,844 miles, Jun 2011 mileage not recorded, Mar 2014 @ 65,824 miles, Mar 2017 @ 70,085 miles
  • Sales invoice on file from when the vendor purchased the car second-hand in 1999
  • Original leather document wallet
  • Comes with a large stack of invoices
  • Three keys and two remote fobs
  • Only 84,000 miles since new
  • Current MOT expires 27 Feb 2025
  • V5 present in owner’s name
  • HPI clear


  • This M3’s smart light grey leather interior is generally very well preserved for its age
  • The driver’s seat has gained a little light ‘patina’ through use but this may respond well to a professional clean
  • The rest of the upholstery looks good, from what we can see, with only light signs of use and creasing to the leather
  • Dolby sound system with radio, cassette player, and six-CD changer
  • Dual-zone climate control
  • Polished burr walnut veneers add a touch of class to the interior
  • The vendor informs us that all the instruments as well as the sounds system and onboard computer are in full working order
  • The original footwell mats are said to be in reasonable condition for their age
  • To the rear, the fully carpeted boot is clean and tidy
  • The original toolkit remains fitted to the bootlid, and is still almost complete
  • Full size spare wheel under the boot floor fitted with a Michelin tyre
  • Jack and wheel brace also stored under the boot floor


  • Finished in an attractive shade of Boston Green Metallic, this M3 remains a smart example ready to be driven
  • The retro styling looks great and marks it out as something a little different in today’s traffic
  • It has picked up a few chips and scratches over the years, for example the bonnet has a couple of chips and a small, unobtrusive dimple hear the badge
  • Generally the body panels look good, with nice shut lines
  • Colour-matched bumpers with black trim
  • The green mohair hood and headlining were professionally replaced in 2017
  • This hood appears to fit well and the fabric remains free from any significant stains or damage that we could see
  • We’re told that the sometimes the automatic hood mechanism needs a little manual assistance, which can be done from inside the car
  • There is a small amount of bubbling on the offside rear wheel arch
  • The 17-inch alloy wheels look generally good, but there are a few small grazes in the rims, and the BMW centre badges could benefit from being replaced
  • They are shod with a pair of Michelin tyres at the front (the seller tells us these were recently fitted), and Continentals at the rear
  • There is a little delamination to the number plates, but they remain legible
  • The headlamps and other lights look clear and bright
  • Underneath, there is a little surface corrosion to be seen, as usual for a car of this age


  • 3,201 cc six-cylinder petrol engine
  • Six-speed manual transmission drives the rear wheels
  • The Vanos variable camshaft control unit was changed by BMW in 2003
  • A 2014 invoice states that the clutch, spigot bearing, and dual-mass flywheel were replaced
  • Since the most recent MOT in February 2024, the front brake flexible hoses have been replaced
  • Minor corrosion was also noted on the coil springs, this has been investigated and monitored, with accompanying photographs
  • The vendor tells us that the car always starts easily from cold and runs without issue
  • It sounds good and pulls well through the gears
  • The engine bay looks clean and tidy


If you like to know the full history of your car, you can’t do much better than purchasing from the person who has owned it since 1999. And this M3 has received a number of significant services in recent years as well as a new roof.

As well as being a collectible nineties car, it will satisfy anyone’s need for a spacious four-seater which is still designed very much with the driver in mind.

To arrange a viewing, please request this in the Q&A section. You can click through to the seller's profile and use the 'Email Me' function to arrange a viewing privately. This seller is located in Cobham, Surrey.

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