How I made $4k parting out a BMW E38 7-Series – only half way done!

How I made $4k parting out a BMW E38 7-Series – only half way done!


About 14 months ago, I bought the cheapest
BMW E38 on the internet. I found this 2001 740i on ebay for $400. It had a salvage flood
title and had recently quit starting for the owner, who at that point just wanted it out
of his driveway. The first time I saw the car in person was the night I went to pick
it up. It had some cosmetic issues and rust bubbles on the exterior panels, garbage tires,
and was already missing the tail lights and trunk navigation unit. All that, plus the
salvage title, in addition to not wanting to start, or even crank, helped me to decide
I’d be better off parting it out rather than making it road worthy and trying to sell
it for a couple grand. I have been selling and/or trading parts from
this car over the past year on ebay, craigslist, and Facebook. I’ve taken photos and kept
a list of each part sold. For parts that were traded, I’m using the average market price
for the same used part sold on ebay. Although I was going to wait to share my part out progress
until everything was sold, I’ve had a few subscribers ask for an update. So here’s
part one of my $400 BMW 740i part out list… park brake handle
27.35 transmission, which I found out had no reverse
250 rear bumper cover had a bad crack in it. I
kept the trim and sold it for 20 bucks Left & right mirrors $80 trunk lock actuator $24.95 glovebox handle $79.95 golf bag illustration card $2.95 Front left grab handle $13.95 Left rear fender moulding$7.95 Left Rear Door Moulding $25.95 Right rear door mounding $25.95 left int door handle $11.95 right rear bumper moulding $21.95 Mt 5-year old tool a liking to the Motorolla flip phone, so I gave it to her. Then I looked on ebay to see they sell for $40 to $50 bucks! Oh well… she loves it. Center rear bumper moulding $55.95 rubber intake boot $29.95 sill lamp $5.95 sun visors $44.95 right rear fender moulding $7.95 Front right door speaker $17.95 radio trim plate $25.95 right rear speaker $19.95 The rar springs found a perfect home, on the struts of the Weirdmobile to get the rear lifted enough to fit those big truck tires. front left door speaker $22.95 rear floormats $28.95 left rear trunk panel $32.95 another sill lamp $5.95 left rear bumper moulding $25.95 left rear speaker $19.95 left interior handle $11.95 radio $99.95 The screen didn’t turn on due to the missing nav unit in the trunk. Rather than get another nav unit to test the screen, I sold it as-is. It turns out it worked perfect and the buyer got a great deal. owner manuals $54.95 fuel door actuator $17.95 fr bumper tow flap $14.95 lower driver dash panel
$22.95 top left B pillar trim
$35.95 Left rear ext handle
$21.95 trans ecu
$25.95 top right b pillar trim
$35.95 glove box
$19.95 coolant expansion tank
$24.95 hood latch
$19.95 hood buffer
$3.95 engine cover
$92.95 C pillar right trim
$74.95 shift knob
$13.95 hood buffer
$3.95 hood alarm switch
$19.95 rear sub box
$65.95 right front ext handle
$21.95 air quality sensor
$21.95 2 cig lighters
$19.95 pass fog light
$10 (8) coil packs
$80 trans crossmember
$28.95 L lower b pillar trim
$37.95 shift boot
$14.95 RR window channel
$29.95 front seat pocket panel
$29.95 (2) license plate lights
$17.90 cat converters
$115 Front Left interior sill strip
$12.95 DME ecu
$37.95 cd changer
$10.95 3rd brakelight
$9.95 garage door remote
$24.95 pair of cig lighters
$16.95 RR window regulator
$62.95 front seat back panel pocket
$31.95 left fog light
$20.95 A pillars L + R
$39.95 seat rail covers
$19.95 top left c pillar trim
$17.95 voice recognition module
$19.95 left dash wood trim
$9.95 trunk ski bag panels L + R
$22.95 rear center console
$39.95 The entire rear end was donated to Mike’s CBR 600 F4i Go-Kart project. red door safety light
$4.99 heater control valve
$72.95 left rear reading light
$21.95 pass wood dash trim
$18.95 RR Door insulator liner
$19.95 trunk mat
$19.95 FR int sill trim strip
$12.95 foglight switch
$14.95 2 front seat recline vert motors
$29.95 Right fender liner
$36.95 Pass seat headrest motor
$15.95 LR window regulator
$58.95 m62 flywheel
$24.95 strut cap cover
$4.99 m62tu engine wiring harness
$99.95 After picking it clean of any worthy parts, I scrapped the shell and got $180.73 $28.50 of that was for the 57 lbs. of wiring I took out of the car! And that wasn’t even including all of the power wire, which I kept. turn signal bulb sockets
$10.95 pass distribution box
$55.95 pass seat harness
$18.95 center console switch module
$19.95 hood vent trim
$55.95 cluster
$39.95 The cluster had burned out pixels. Good ones are worth much more. headlight switch
$14.95 another door safety light
$4.99 rear headrest
$12.95 m62tu tensioner
$16.95 console wood trim
$59.95 front left door air bag
$22.95 srs control unit
$65.95 left front door lock actuator
$45.95 front seat belt set
$35.95 alpine radio unit
$65.95 front lumbar pump unit
$15.95 L + R windshield trim
$20.95 back seat headrest
$12.95 upper left timing cover
$35.95 trunk lid power lock drive
$25.95 right exhaust manifold
$94.95 rear seat belts
$25.95 oil pump
$48.95 coolant pipes
$27.95 lower oil pan
$55.95 fr right seat belt buckle
$26.95 steering wheel clock spring
$42.95 hood release handle
$9.95 leather center armrest
$75.95 fr bumper grid
$19.95 The grand total so far???
4,188 dollars and 45 cents! I honestly thought I’d end up somewhere
between 3 and 4 grand when it was all said and done. At the rate things are going, I’m
guessing I’ll end up between 7 and 8 grand… maybe more!
This has been a fun experiment to see how much I could get out of this car. It’s been
over a year and I still have plenty of BMW parts in my basement. I’ve always wanted
an E38, but this wasn’t the right car for me – or for anyone. It makes me feel good
inside to see so many parts going to keep other E38’s on the road. If you’ve had
a good or bad experience with an E38, let us know in the comments. Or if you’ve had
good luck parting out any vehicle, I’d like to hear what it was and how you made out in
the end. Give this video a like if you want me to do a follow up when the rest of the
parts are sold. As always… Thanks for watching!

About the Author: Michael Flood

15 Comments

  1. I have a 740 as well timing chain is shot and was trying to sell the vehicle as a whole. Shoot I might just part it out now that looking at this vehicle lol.

  2. very inspiring!!! Would you say you sold most items on ebay? How did you deal with the hundreds of insertion fees? Have you packaged/boxed up all the parts beforehand or do you box them only after they sell?

  3. I've been buying salvage Mini Coopers (2002-2006) over the past 4 years. 1st one was a 2004 JCW that too far gone to repair. Bought for 2250.00. total parts sales = ~6600.00. so around 4k profit. Rebuilt the 2nd one, a 2006 JCW convertible into my summer daily driver. And finally have another 2004 S that is currently being torn down in the garage. Keeps me out of trouble and funds other projects that I can't get by the finance dept. 🙂 Great channel by the way, glad to see you are still working on cars/trucks and expanding into being a youtuber.

  4. Such a great informative video! Im subscribing for sure! Love to see more vids like this about other vehicles and maybe get some hints and tips on how to be as successful as you are! Great job and great content bub!

  5. HIT ME UP if you want a clean e38. I have one in my garage. Drives great looks great clean title. Black ext tan int. 1998 740il. VERY LOVED.

  6. I’ve been parting E38s for about a year now. Currently on my 7th one. I love it because it’s fun but also very profitable as you are seeing.

  7. Just run into your videos today (10'27'19); and have been enjoying them. Thanks for sharing. Awesome channel. Was going to ask you about the shipping fees. These odd looking items they are pretty expensive to ship. What methods have you been using? if you don't mind sharing. Thanks

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