Right, the bottoming out and the leaning is probably due to the softer suspension on the SE. (Sway bar type, springs type). I'm not a strut expert, but when they are going bad, your car won't pass the bounce test; they struts are more for holding the car in one place when you go over bumps or uneven surfaces.
I did change the struts out on my car about a month ago. It'* not for the faint of heart! I went with the factory (AC Delco) all around, and got the same results as if the car was new again. I think there are other types of struts that people have been satisifed with, but I chose the AC Delco just to play it safe. I liked the way the car rode before the originals went bad, and they lasted 120,000 miles.
1999 540iA Sport
Former 93 SSEi Owner
Former 89 SE Owner