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    Elizabeth
    Elizabeth posted a new blog post, JDM-styled BMW M3 E46

    JDM-styled BMW M3 E46

    Posted in Cars on 25.04.2020

    Wild JDM-styled BMW E46 M3. With its ultra-aggressive Japanese performance-inspired styling, this hardcore E46 M3 most definitely goes against the grain, which is exactly what makes it so good. Words: Elizabeth de Latour. Photos: Patrick Lauder.

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    600whp turbo GM 6.0-litre LQ4 V8-swapped drift BMW E46 Coupe

    Posted in Cars on 07.12.2019

    600whp turbo V8 E46 insane wide-arch drift missile. Sometimes you need to let loose and go a little crazy, and this insane LQ V8-swapped E46 drift beast is an unhinged creation that’s been built with no compromise and no caution. Words: Elizabeth de Latour. Photos: Patrik Karlsson.

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    Paul Cowland
    BMW E46 M3 SMG Issue

    / #BMW-M3-SMG-E46 / #BMW-M3-E46 / #BMW-M3-SMG / #BMW-M3 / #BMW-SMG / #BMW

    I thought I’d write in with a query about my car to see if anyone has any suggestions – or if BMW Car’s resident expert, Andrew Everett (my favourite writer), has any thoughts?

    I have a #2005-BMW-M3-Convertible-SMG-E46 with the #SMG-transmission and approximately 80,000 miles. It has had the usual issues associated with these cars but I still love it – once you’ve learned how to drive with SMG I strangely prefer it to a manual.

    It’s had the boot floor reinforced, the Vanos system rebuilt at Mr Vanos in Darlington (www.mrvanos.com) and the dreaded SMG problem (almost) fixed. The gearbox decided it didn’t want to choose every gear when asked so I drove it to my local BMW dealer recently in Cumbria (used for over 30 years). They looked and diagnosed the hydro-electrical actuator as the problem, unfortunately after this was replaced it still didn’t ix the issue. The detent springs on the gearbox were then replaced and finally gears could be selected with a final bill of £4500. I drove it home and all seemed almost fine with life.

    I only use my M3 for longer journeys. After two weeks of it not being used, for the first five minutes first gear was met with some vibration and reluctance for drive to engage. As if the clutch or flywheel were not being engaged properly. All other gears were fine. This problem was not there before the initial SMG problem (the original clutch and flywheel were not replaced). After a few miles the problem disappeared and taking of in first gear was totally fine. I’m not an aggressive driver, I’m mechanically sympathetic to my car and the SMG selector is always left in the middle setting. As for Sport mode... I enjoy having my licence too much so it’s never used.

    I again left the car sitting for a couple of weeks and was met with the exact same problem with first gear. Before I return to my BMW dealer (and yet another bill) I was wondering if anyone could shed any light on this issue?
    • This could be a few things.... We spoke to ex-BMW Master Tech Barry Sheward at BMR Performance (www.bmrperformance.co.uk). Firstly, you need to be takThis could be a few things.... We spoke to ex-BMW Master Tech Barry Sheward at BMR Performance (www.bmrperformance.co.uk). Firstly, you need to be taking this back to the dealer that did all the work as it’s clearly not right. For £4500 we guess it’s had either the actuator on the gearbox replaced or the SMG pump under the inlet manifold/airbox – or both. If it’s on the original clutch then this may be the problem – even if the clutch plate still has meat on it, it could be dragging on the gearbox input shaft splines due to a build-up of dirt on the clutch release fork, the plastic pivot and the metal release bearing sleeve will all be very well worn by now. The release bearing wears a groove on it and can stick. The flywheel should be alright at 80k.
      The first thing is to get the fault codes read – these need to be proper BMW codes and not just generic P codes, the clutch should be bled through twice as well. If no fault codes are showing then it is bound to be a mechanical wear issue, and a new clutch with all the parts mentioned above need replacement; clutch kit, clutch fork, release bearing sleeve and plastic pivot pin.
        Еще...
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    Andy Everett
    PRE-PAINTED WINGS / #BMW-E46 / #BMW / #BMW-E46-Wings

    The E46 has always suffered from rusted front arches and to have a pair of wings put on your average example by a bodyshop and painted, is going to be prohibitively expensive. The accepted method to do this on a car is to paint the wing shuts, bolt it to the car, paint both the wing and into the door to blend the colour and then lacquer both panels. That’s into 500 quid, at the very least plus.

    But, these days, few E46s warrant that sort of expense unless it’s a 330Ci Clubsport, or a nice, late-model Convertible. But look on eBay and there are companies selling pre-painted front wings. There isn’t much variance in BMW colours, so the usual suspects – Titan silver, Black Sapphire, Topaz blue, etc, are pretty easy to match.

    The better pattern wings also fit pretty well so, if you can fit the wings yourself (not hard), then this is the answer. Prices are around 100 quid each for saloon and Touring wings, and £115 for Coupé and Convertible panels.
    Clayton Auto Salvage Ltd is a good example of a number of suppliers selling on eBay and, when you can have a new, painted wing delivered free for 100 quid, it’s rarely worth trying to find a rust-free original. Fitting isn’t too bad, although the top Torx bolts can be a real bitch. The rear, A-post bolts are easy with the arch liner pulled back, and plenty of masking tape around the door, sill and bonnet edges.
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    Elizabeth
    Elizabeth posted a new blog post, Air-ride 319whp BMW M3 E46

    Air-ride 319whp BMW M3 E46

    Posted in Cars on 23.03.2019

    Seriously sexy BMW M3 E46. Fulfilling a lifelong dream of M3 ownership, Tyler Grimes has blended pure NA performance with some serious style and individual flair, and the end result is an expertly-executed, head-turning build. Words: Elizabeth de Latour. Photos: Tony Lopez.

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    Simon George
    What about the BMW 325ti E46?

    I’m commending you on such a great magazine. It really covers what I feel are the cars most of us mere mortals aspire to or do own without having to sell our souls. I love the mix of makes and the direct comparisons that caused such debates when the cars were new in our youth. Indeed, you featured one of my cars (my glorious BMW 850CSi E31) and that issue has achieved cult status on my coffee table.

    I would like to draw your attention to a car you seem to have overlooked, unless I have missed an article somewhere. In fact, the only mention of it appeared two years ago where you tipped it for future stardom. I give you the BMW E46 Compact 325ti.

    It’s about time we looked at the BMW 325ti E46.

    / #BMW-325ti-Compact-E46/5 / #BMW-325ti-Compact-E46 / #BMW-325ti-E46/5 / #BMW-325ti-Compact / #BMW-E46/5 / #BMW / #BMW-E46 / #BMW-3-Series-E46 / #BMW-3-Series / #BMW-3-Series-E46/5
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  • Post is under moderation
    Elizabeth
    Elizabeth posted a new blog post, Wide-arch BMW 330Ci E46

    Wide-arch BMW 330Ci E46

    Posted in Cars on 01.01.2019

    Overarching stance wide-arch BMW E46 330Ci. With custom metal rear wide arches hiding in plain sight, this seriously-slick E46 goes the extra mile for perfect fitment. Words: Elizabeth de Latour. Photos: Scott Paterson.

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    Aron Norris

    657hp 2JZ-engined BMW M3 E46 drift monster

    Posted in Cars on 11.12.2018

    It’s not easy being green Die-hard purists better run for cover because this genetically modified Java green drift mutant is powered by a rabblerousing Japanese straight-six. Prepare to wrap your head around a BMW that Frankenstein would be proud of… Words: Aron Norris. Photos: Matthew Moscone.

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