BMW 3 series tuning.
BMW 3 series
The BMW 3 series was first launched in 1975 with the E21, however it was not until 1982 the 3 series was a success with all the E30.
In particular the Ultimate Driving Machine really kicked things off in 1985 with the E30 M3 which was produced as a race car for the road.
This was because BMW wanted to compete in touring car racing.
After this success, 3 more lucrative generations have followed.
BMWs naturally have very good suspension, especially thanks to the 50: 50 weight distribution found through the entire range.
Tuning articles and tips
But any suspension setup can be improved upon. A good beginning to a suspension overhaul will be to install a pair of adjustable coil overs. These are available in many varieties from eBay specials to high-end track setups.
When installing coil overs, be sure to select some adjustable top mounts as well. This should help you gain camber and castor. If you plan to go extremely low, generally the lower the greater, however some models demand a sump guard. If ride comfort is vital to your everyday journey then we recommend you go for a pair of lowering springs instead as being a coil over setup can be very stiff.
Stunning handling and a great range of engines clearly mark the 3 series BMW out from the competition as a drivers car.
BMW 3 Series Tuning
You will notice that older BMWs need more work to get the nearly all of out of them as parts have endured more wear due to their life span. Especially pay attention to the bushes. The better the bushes, the stiffer the ride will likely be. Powerflex give a great selection of polyurethane bushes (poly bushes) for all BMWs that will stiffen up the help and ride handling.
Anti-roll bars are also a great way of improving how the car handles as chassis roll is reduced through hard cornering. Adjustable setups can be purchased and are very beneficial if the car is used both on the road and also on the track. Strut braces are an easy modification that helps reduce chassis flex. Front and rear strut braces will make sure the car stays stable at top speed.
An important part for any project is making the sure the vehicle stops. Luckily BMWs let you swap parts from other BMWs to create a bigger, better setup. An example of it becomes an E46 330i brakes being applied to an E36. Just be sure the correct master servo and cylinder are used otherwise the middle pedal won’t do anything whatsoever! If you want serious brakes though, many setups are available.
Grooved and drilled discs are a smart idea to stop brake allow and fade up rated cooling. These characteristics are answer to track cars, but can be too much for a daily drive car as brakes might not exactly reach optimum temperature quick enough. Brake pads are also important and should be chosen wisely depending on what the car is used for.
By using a pad made for track use may not be perfect for road visa and utilize-versa. A simple but effective way to improve braking is usually to install some stainless steel brake lines. These reduce any flex from the lines and don’t corrode like OEM ones do. This will improve the feel in the brakes in every setup.
Now we go to the exciting part of any BMW 3 Series project, more power! Exhaust systems are an effective way of increasing throttle response and adding a number of extra horses. Pipe diameter is the key element in choosing your exhaust system. The right size for an M3 will no doubt be too large for a smaller powered version.
BMW 3 series engine
For example, the optimum exhaust size for any 318is is 2.25 inches, nevertheless the M3 utilizes a 3 inch diameter. This is to achieve the best flow rate vs back pressure. Induction kits can achieve good power gains across the range, but make sure to use a heat shield around enclosed filter as heat soak mean a loss in power.
Smaller engines can achieve similar gains with just a panel filter, however. Throttle bodies can also be an important part of adding power to your 3 Series.
Big bore throttle bodies (BBTBs) or individual throttle bodies (ITBs) help deliver more power and a better throttle response to your BMW. By getting a remap done, once you’ve finished with your power modifications then make sure you take advantage.
This may ensure that there no flat spots meaning drivability is in it’s best and power is increased further. When you have a smaller engined BMW, nearly as good gains are around for most engines, especially diesels, Don’t be put off. A turbo or supercharger may be the path to take if it isn’t enough for you.
Styling is probably the most enjoyable part of a 3 Series project. There are so many parts to select from you will spend hours looking and planning. Non-Mtec models may benefit from an Mtec conversion and Mtec models may be inspired by many aftermarket manufacturers including Alpina, AC and Hartge Schnitzer.
The greatest choice you can expect to make throughout your 3 Series project is the thing that wheels to choose. TorqueCars recommends going for lightweight wheels to maximise performance. This means avoiding replica wheels as they are usually heavier than standard wheels.
A common wheel choice is to get 5 Series rims onto a 3 Series. When you purchase this route then make sure a spigot ring is commonly used to reduce centre bore size. Otherwise you will endure wheel wobble.
BMW 3 series
To ensure you select a good base for your project be sure to check the rear arches for rust as replacements will be expensive.
If equipped, VANOS., other areas to check on are the wiring contained inside the boot harness as tear and wear may cause electrical problems, the Nikasil issue found with Nickel lined alloy blocks, exhaust manifolds.