- Post is under moderationELIZABETH’S E63 630i SPORT
The BMW 630i has a fair few miles under its wheels now (about 96k if I recall correctly) and after being on the road for so long, 12 years now, you can’t help but wonder what sort of state the insides of the engine are in. When the time came for an oil change and I was booking in with #BMSport (as I always do), co-owner Jags mentioned that they could now offer an EDT Treatment and suggested I give it a try.
/ #BMW-E63 / #BMW-630i / #BMW-630i-E63 / #BMW-6-Series / #BMW-6-Series-E63 / #BMW / #MStyle / #BMW-630i-Sport / #BMW-630i-Sport-E63
So, just what is EDT? Well it’s certainly not an engine flush so don’t go calling it that – EDT is a deep clean for your engine and the company says that a treatment can deliver up to 26% better fuel economy, a 6hp average increase in power and 7lb ft of torque, a 69% reduction in CO emissions, improved performance and drivability, a smoother, quieter engine and improved engine longevity. I bet you’re probably scowling and are pretty sceptical right now, right? Well so was I when Jags started telling me about EDT and then he too said he had initially been rather sceptical about the whole process, right up until they decided to get an EDT machine in to try it out and noticed a difference on their own cars. That was enough to convince them to sign up with EDT and once they started offering the service they started getting superb customer feedback about the results, and at this point my mind had been changed and I was keen to have a go. People love to moan, they’re more likely to moan about something bad than speak up when something is good and yet take a look at EDT’s Trustpilot score, 9.9/10 after 152 reviews, which is seriously impressive. So, I was convinced to let Jags and the guys hook the 630 up to the Engine Decontamination Machine (which has been manufactured in the States and distributed around the world for over 20 years now) to see if I could feel a difference.
So how does it all work? Well, paraphrasing from the EDT site, the machine has been designed to remove all the sludge, varnish and debris from inside your engine, which improves the coefficient of friction as the components aren’t covered in gunk any more, allowing your fresh oil to perform as best as it possibly can. This in turn results in the improvements mentioned above, like the increase in fuel economy, improved performance and drivability. The first step is to drain your old oil from the car after which the machine is connected up and pumps in a bespoke mineral oil to deep-clean your engine and a clear container on the side of the machine shows you everything that’s being removed. The whole process takes less than 15 minutes, after which fresh oil and a clean filter are added and you’re good to go.
So, to the moment of truth – did I notice a difference? Well, the 630i was running well anyway but it seemed like a good idea to get the engine internals cleaned after almost 100,000 miles and I would say that I did notice a difference. Fuel economy has improved a touch and I would say the engine feels a little bit smoother and more eager. I’m not going to sit here and tell you that, in my case, the difference was like night and day because it wasn’t but I definitely felt an improvement. Beyond that, I have the added peace of mind of knowing that my N52’s internals are sparkling clean and the engine is performing at its best, so it’s definitely worth doing especially if your BM has covered a lot of miles and you want to ensure that it’s performing as best it possibly can.
Oh, also, the 630i is up for sale; I’ve decided it’s too sensible for me and I need something sillier as a daily, because why not…? If you’re interested then please drop me an email.
THANKS AND CONTACT
020 8304 9797
BMW 630i E63 in for its EDT treatment Gunk from your engine collects in here EDT filter after treatment EDT machine pumps bespoke mineral oil through your engine. Deep cleaning in progress.
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- Post is under moderationELIZABETH’S E63 630i SPORT / #BMW-E63 / #BMW-630i / #BMW-630i-E63 / #BMW-6-Series / #BMW-6-Series-E63 / #BMW / #MStyle / #BMW-630i-Sport / #BMW-630i-Sport-E63
One of the things that drew me to my 630i was the colour; Stratus grey is a seriously gorgeous, albeit understated, pearlescent colour that switches from blue to grey to olive to gold depending on the light. I love it but, when I first collected the car, it was obvious that the previous owner hadn’t done a very good job of looking after it. The 630 looked like it had been washed with a scouring pad and was covered in swirl marks, which seriously dull a car’s paint. If your car’s paint is swirly then sealants and waxes will only go so far to make it look shiny and glossy, as all those surface imperfections will interfere with reflections, scattering the light and robbing the paint of its full, glossy potential. I knew something had to be done so I booked the Six in with Barrett Motorwerks for a three-stage paint correction session. Barrett Motorwerks is run by James Barrett, who many of you on the UK scene will know, and the company has two elements to it; the first is the tuning and styling side of the business, with James able to supply everything from grilles to exhausts and suspension to superchargers, and the second is the mobile valeting that James also offers, which is so popular that I had to book my slot with him almost a month in advance.
James kindly offered to come to me in Kent but as that’s a bit outside his Essex valeting patch I was more than happy to drive to him as a) it’s not far and b) any excuse to take the 630 for a drive is a good excuse. With the weather against us, James had secured a unit for the day that would ensure he had a dry environment within which to work and he began with a thorough wash. The car was snow foamed, with this being allowed to dwell to help lift the dirt from the paint before it was blasted off with a pressure washer and then James got busy with his fluffy wash mitt, giving the body a good wash and washing the wheels with a second, dedicated wheel mitt. He then pulled the car into the unit and dried it with an ultra-plush microfibre drying towel before taping up all the trims around the car and claying the paint to ensure it was silky smooth and completely free of bonded contaminants in preparation for the paint correction.
This was carried out using a dual-action machine, a Rupes Bigfoot, considered one of the best on the market, and three progressively finer polishing compounds. You start off with the most abrasive one to deliver the strongest cut in order to remove the maximum amount of surface defects, before switching to a milder cutting compound to refine the finish and then onto an ultra-fine polish to give the paint maximum shine and gloss. Correcting paint is a long, slow process that takes many hours and requires a lot of patience as you can’t rush any of it; you have to take your time, working the machine slowly and methodically over each section and then you have to do it all again another two times if you’re doing a three-stage correction as James was for me. Watching him work you can see that he is passionate about detailing and applies the same level of care and attention to his customers’ cars as he does to his own, which is exactly what you want when you hand your pride and joy over to someone. James worked carefully and methodically, inspecting the paint after each pass with the machine, switching to the progressively finer compounds and once he’d use the ultra-fine finishing polish and was happy with the results the paint was now ready for its last-stage protection. Personally I am a bit of a wax addict, with quite a large collection, and I love trying out new waxes and seeing how they perform but James is very much a 21st century boy who’s all about sealants. Sealants are liquids that often contain man-made and synthetic polymers or resins; while they don’t deliver the same depth of shine as the very best waxes do, they do deliver unrivalled long-term protection, with James’ sealant of choice capable of lasting up to 12 months, so it’s easy to see why he’s such a fan and it’s the perfect choice for a daily driver like the BMW 630i Sport E63.
The end results were absolutely stunning, with the 6 Series looking the best it ever has during my time with it; the paint looked so much better than it did before and the massive reduction in the massive amount of swirls means that the pearl really pops now, while the sealant has delivered impressive levels of gloss and I’m totally sold on how durable it promises to be. James really did an exceptional job on the Six and I can see why he’s so popular and so busy, so if you’re looking for a mobile valeter in the Essex area to look after your pride and joy, give him a call, you won’t be disappointed.
THANKS AND CONTACT Barrett Motorwerks barrettmotorwerks.co.uk 07930 433427
James began by snow foaming the car Snow foam was left to dwell, jetted off and the car was then washed. Wheels were cleaned with a dedicated wash mitt. The paint was treated to a three-stage correction process. All trims were taped-up. The finishing touch was a coat of sealant The results speak for themselves. The car was dried and then clayed. The 630’s paint looks so much better now.
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- Post is under moderationELIZABETH’S E63 630i SPORT / #BMW-E63 / #BMW-630i / #BMW-630i-E63 / #BMW-6-Series / #BMW-6-Series-E63 / #BMW / #MStyle / #BMW-630i-Sport / #BMW-630i-Sport-E63 / #LED / #BMW-E63-LED
With almost all the niggles on the 630 sorted I decided it was time to treat it to some mods and one thing I have never been a fan of is chrome. BMW, and most other car manufacturers, seem addicted to the stuff, seemingly equating the amount of chrome with a car’s luxury level but unless you’re talking about something classic like an E9 or E23, or something like an oldschool Rolls-Royce or Bentley, then to me it just looks cheap and a bit tacky. With my 6 Series being a Sport that meant that I didn’t have any chrome window strips to worry about, with the window surrounds finished in gloss black, and even my washer jets are gloss black but it still retained the chrome front grilles and side strips. The side strips weren’t too bad but the E63’s kidney grille is pretty massive and that meant there were two big lumps of shiny plastic on the front end that I really hated looking at. I decided that I wanted the kidneys and the strips to match the rest of the exterior trim so they had to be gloss black and for these I turned to MStyle. If you want something for your BM and it exists rather than just being a figment of your imagination, MStyle probably sells it; the company’s catalogue of BMW styling and performance parts is simply enormous and I quickly found the parts I wanted on its site. However, it transpired that the gloss black side strips I wanted were out of stock and would be for the foreseeable future. As the E63 is not the most popular model of BMW, there really were no other shopping options for me.
But then MStyle head honcho Paul offered a solution: I bring the car in and the guys paint my side strips gloss black while I wait. I liked the sound of that so booked the Six in for a bit of a makeover.
When I popped into MStyle’s Romford HQ the workshop team wasted no time in getting the car in and whipping out the front grilles and removing the side strips to get them ready for painting. I also decided that I’d treat the 630 to a set of MStyle’s high-output LED angel eye bulbs and get them fitted at the same time as everything else.
As standard the 6 Series came with rather dull, yellow halogen bulbs for its angel eyes which don’t look particularly sexy. As well as not being very bright they really look out of place next to the xenon headlights and MStyle’s LED bulbs looked like they were exactly what I needed to give the headlights an upgrade. While my strips were baking and everything else was being installed the guys in the main office looked after me with plenty of coffee and episodes of The Grand Tour and before I knew it the Six was ready for me.
First of all, the new front grilles have made a massive difference to to how the car looks; as they’re so big and the front end is curved outwards the kidneys are especially prominent so they’re a big part of what gives the car its identity. In chrome they did the otherwise stylish Six no favours, but in gloss black they’ve really freshened up the front end and have made the car looks a lot more aggressive; they remind me of a pair of flared nostrils on an angry animal. Gloss black front grilles are a big win on the E63 as far as I’m concerned. The side strips, while a lot more subtle, definitely look a lot better gloss black; they’ve always been a slightly quirky design element of this generation 6 Series but where before they really stood out like a sore thumb on the 630’s smooth, clean and otherwise chrome-free flanks, finished in gloss black they now blend perfectly with the big loop of gloss black trim that surrounds the long side windows. MStyle’s paint department did an excellent job and the strips have a perfectly smooth finish that makes them look like they’d never been anything other than gloss black. Finally, the LED angel eye bulbs have also made a big difference and, as well as being much brighter than the old halogen bulbs, when they’re on they instantly give the front end a much more modern look, in line with BM’s current offerings thanks to their white colour. So, big thanks to MStyle for sorting out the 6 Series and it’s always surprising how big a difference just some small mods can make.
There were two other things that I also decided to take care of recently and that was the gear selector and the steering wheel badge. For some reason, BMW loves of bit of silver on its auto gear selectors and I’m really not sure why; on my E39 the gear selector trim matched the rest of the interior wood trim – very nice – and on E38s the whole top of the selector was finished in wood. With my 630 coming equipped with the rather nice dark grey birch wood trim that all pre-LCI Sports received you’d think it would make sense to maybe fit a similar strip of wood trim to the top of the gear selector so that it matches the rest of the interior. But no, BMW decided to fit a cheap-looking matt silver trim piece that looks more like it’s meant to match the interior door handles than anything else and which gets easily and badly scratched, revealing a horrible shiny surface underneath. It had to go. I discovered that BMW did offer an Individual gear selector with piano black trim, a much better match for the wood in my car, and I even found one for sale… for £300, so that wasn’t going to be happening anytime soon.
I briefly considered just buying a new original gear selector but then found that you can buy aftermarket ones on eBay which look pretty good and, at around £50, cost about half the price of a new one from BMW. I examined all the pictures I could find and read some forum posts about these selectors and everyone seemed pretty pleased so I decided to take the plunge and bought myself a piano black one. When it arrived, it was clear that the new selector was a much a cheaper item than the BMW part, but then it was much cheaper so that was to be expected, really. Where the body of the BMW item is covered in (supposedly) leather, my eBay selector’s body was made from hard, matt plastic; it was also slightly larger and taller than the original item but the piano black trim looked miles better than the nasty silver stuff from BMW so I was happy.
Fitting was easy – you can either start the engine to move the selector out of park or, with the engine off, pry up the plastic surround after which you can reach inside and press the emergency release button, which enables you to put the car in neutral. This now gives you plenty of room to pull off the standard gear selector and then you simply insert the new one. Because the construction of the selector’s insides is not identical to that of the stock item, it doesn’t fi t as snugly and, initially, would often come loose in my hand as I was moving it around. I was not impressed but decided to add a bit of Loctite around the edge of the metal lip on the bottom of the selector shaft that the selector itself slides onto and grips around. That seems to have done the trick as it now feels far more secure and has not once come off during use. It still feels a bit cheap and plasticky when you’re holding it, but the trim looks so much better so I can forgive it. I am planning to wrap the trim from the old selector in gloss black, though I haven’t got around to it just yet, but I’m keen to see how that will turn out. My prediction is not great, but we shall see.
Now it was time to sort out my steering wheel badge; when I took the delivery of the car I noticed that the badge, which is made of metal, had been pressed in, I assume because someone pushed it hard when going for the horn. As time went by it started to bother me more and more until I decided I had to do something about. So, you’re probably thinking ‘What’s the big deal? Just buy a new badge, easy.’ Expect it’s not. You see, the badge isn’t stuck onto the steering wheel, it actually has to legs that extend into the steering wheel and wrap around the airbag, meaning it’s impossible to remove and you basically need a whole new airbag unit from BMW if you want a new badge. Not impressed, I started searching for alternative solutions.
Initially I tried to see if I could pull the dent out using a suction cup but that got me nowhere so I went back to scouring the Internet. That’s when I discovered that BMW produces a very, very thin metal adhesive roundel designed to go on some specific centre caps that is exactly the same size as the badge on the steering wheel (45mm) and looks almost identical. What’s more it was just £10 on eBay so I ordered one. Once I had the badge, my next challenge was making sure I stuck it on as straight as possible over the existing badge. My solution was to line some masking tape up vertically and horizontally with the cross that passes through the middle of the #BMW roundel, delicately trim around the original badge, remove the tape from the centre and then stick matching masking tape strips onto my new badge, allowing me to line them up with the ones on the steering wheel, hopefully getting the roundel perfectly straight. Against all odds my system actually seemed to work and it looks like I managed to get the new roundel on perfectly straight, so I’m very pleased. It looks really good too, so much so that you’d never realise that it wasn’t the original badge and, most importantly of all, I don’t have to keep looking at that dent as I drive along, so I’m very happy.
THANKS AND CONTACT
020 8598 9115
Chrome kidneys were not ticking Elizabeth’s boxes #Chrome-side-strips needed to go too. Halos brighter, whiter and much nicer with LEDs. Gloss black kidneys look so much better. Side strips were painted gloss black to match. Old gear selector looked tired and worn. Piano black a much better match for wood trim. #Ebay #selector a little larger than OE. New roundel fits perfectly and looks great. Masking tape employed to get new badge on straight.Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderationTHE MPRESSIONIST 470hp 1M-kitted 135i / HARDCORE 135i 470hp, #1M-kitted beast
With 1M looks backed-up with a lot more than 1M power, what was once an unassuming 135i is now a package of pure muscle. Words: Elizabeth de Latour Photos: Matt Richardson
Fitting the 3.0-litre, twin-turbo, straight-six N54 engine into the 1 Series Coupé is one of the best things BMW has ever done. The engine amazed when it first appeared in the E9x 335i thanks to its combination of huge torque spread, impressive top-end, and stirring soundtrack (despite the presence of two turbos to muffle the exhaust note). And then BMW decided to stuff it under the bonnet of the smaller, lighter 1 Series Coupé creating something of a performance hero. But the story doesn’t end there because a couple of years later BMW came out with the 1M, with the E9x M3 running gear crammed under those swollen arches, more power and more attitude, this time creating a performance icon. These days you can pick a 135i up for about £10,000 whereas you’d need about £40,000 to get your hands on a limited edition 1M. Of course, the 1M is a very different prospect when compared with a plain Jane 135i but certainly as far as performance goes there’s hardly anything in it. And once you’ve whacked a remap on the 135i it’ll be the quicker car, if that’s what you’re interested in. Of course, there’s nothing stopping you from buying yourself a 135i and building it up into something that’s even better than a 1M…
Meet Sachin Patel, a man who’s done just that. And while he’s got a fair bit of cash invested in his long-term love of a 135i, he’s built this beast of a 1 Series for less than stock 1M would cost to buy. It’s packing some serious firepower, enough to refuse to be intimidated by all but the most heavyweight high performance machinery. And, of course, pouring money as well as your heart and soul into your BMW is just part of everyday life when you’re a lifelong fan of Bavaria’s finest.
“Actually, I was never a BMW fan,” says Sachin. Oh well, scratch that then. “I lived in West London and saw so many so I wasn’t really interested in them at all. That all changed, though, when I drove a 120d. I was really impressed by it. I was looking for a small, powerful car that was also economical and when I read Jeremy Clarkson’s review of the 135i I was sold and went and bought one.”
Sachin always knew he was going to modify his 135i and the first item on his list was more power, because when it’s so easy to extract it would be rude not to. In order to ramp up the power the 135i was treated to a remap, along with an induction kit and a pair of uprated diverter valves. This was enough to nudge power up to the very high 300s and plenty to be getting on with. Sachin also decided to give his chassis a bit of a tweak with the addition of some thicker Eibach anti-roll bars to improve its cornering abilities. And that was enough to satisfy his needs for mods for a while.
“After I’d had the car for about four or five years I decided to sell it and move onto something else,” says Sachin. “A prospective buyer came over one day to have a look at it and said that he was going to put a 1M kit on whatever car he bought. It sounded like such a good idea that I removed the car from sale and started looking at getting the 1M kit done myself. I called MStyle, said I wanted a 1M kit, and everything snowballed from there.”
The transformation was no gentle transition, though. “The styling went from standard to this in one go!” Sachin exclaims. That’s one hell of a transformation. The kit is a Prior Design M wide-body kit, consisting of front and rear bumpers, side skirts, wider front wings and wider rear quarter panels. It’s comprehensive and means that this 135i looks every inch the 1M that inspired its makeover. Now, the kit on its own is awesome and Sachin could have left things there and been extremely happy with the results, but he didn’t. At the same time as the kit was being added a whole host of other styling additions were thrown into the mix to take the car to the next level. Up front there’s an MStyle carbon fibre vented power dome bonnet, a full-length carbon front splitter, and #BMW M Performance gloss black kidney grilles. Then you’ve got the 1M door mirrors, a carbon boot spoiler and carbon fibre rear diffuser from #MStyle , plus LCI Darkline rear lights. These elements are all pretty subtle compared to the impact of the body kit but they definitely add the perfect finishing touches.
Originally, Sachin’s 135i had been white but with its transformation to a wide-body monster it needed a fresh new look. “I’d decided I wanted a matt colour and was debating between black and grey,” he says. You can see which choice won in the end, with the car now finished in stunning Frozen grey. It’s a gorgeous colour that accentuates all of the car’s lines and gives it an otherworldly look. In addition to the Frozen grey bodywork the roof has been painted gloss black, which offers a nice contrast. With the new body kit there was no way that the M Sport wheels that the car had come with would cut the mustard any longer, nor were they beefy enough to fill those fat arches, so the hunt was on for a new set of rims that would be up to the job. Those wheels are Forgestar F14s, forged 14-spoke affairs which are, usefully, available to order in some serious widths and with astonishingly deep concave designs. Indeed, the 9x19” fronts are labelled Deep Concave while the 11x19” rears are what Forgestar calls Super Deep Concave, and that’s no exaggeration, the spokes disappearing deep within the wheel before they hit the centre. With a kit as wild and wide as this you really need to make sure your wheel choice won’t be overwhelmed by those massive arches and that it is capable of delivering its own brand of wow. Well the Forgestars definitely deliver on that front.
With Sachin’s styling plans accomplished, he decided to look at getting a bit more power out of the N54 as, while the 135i was quick, there was still a lot of untapped potential. And who better than MStyle to help tap it? As such, the engine has been fitted with a Mosselman MSL 500 turbo kit, Mosselman twin oil cooler kit and oil cooler separator. There’s also an induction kit, uprated intercooler, uprated low pressure fuel pump, cat-less downpipes, a de-cat centre section with a custom quad exhaust system, and the whole lot is topped off with a Mosselman Stage 3 remap. The end result?
A dyno-proven 470hp with a thumping 480lb ft of torque, huge gains that deliver equally huge performance and really push what was once a humble 135i to the next level.
Up until this point Sachin was still riding on nothing more than the stock suspension with the only handling aids being those Eibach anti-roll bars, so that needed to change. MStyle recommended coilovers so he whipped his wallet out and opted for a set of BC Racing height and damping adjustable items with matching front camber adjustable pillow ball top mounts. “It rides and handles brilliantly now,” says Sachin, “and there’s so much grip it’s actually scary!” He’s has kept the standard callipers because they’re pretty massive, with six-pots up front, but they’ve been given a lick of orange paint which really makes them stand out against the black wheels and grey bodywork.
Inside you’ll find red leather, which looks equally good against the exterior, with carbon trim and a BMW M Performance gear knob, Alcantara gaiter, and matching Alcantara handbrake gaiter. Since the shoot Sachin has added an M Performance Alcantara steering wheel with shift lights and a digital display. He is now thinking about fitting a pair of M4 front seats, which would look awesome.
As we finish up our shoot, Sachin asks if I’d like to take the 135i it out for a spin. I grab the key off him with such ferocity he’s lucky he’s still got a hand left. The first impressions behind the wheel are defined by the stubby gear knob, UUC short-shift kit, and UUC Stage 2 multi-puck ceramic clutch.
It all feels a bit sharp and snatchy for someone who’s just jumped in the car for the first time, so I’m gentle with the clutch and gear change and it’s clear that you’d very quickly get used to the combination and drive it as smoothly as any other car. What a short-shift kit does do, though, is make you want to drive fast and rip through the gears – so that’s exactly what I do. The performance is awesome! It’s the torque that really gets you. There’s so much of it spread over such a wide rev range that it’s always there when you put your foot down. When you do the 135i just explodes forward. It’s incredible and makes this car ridiculously rapid. It takes no effort to find yourself travelling far more quickly than you ever had any intention of doing. The mid-range is so astonishing that you find yourself shortshifting, which drops you right back into the torque plateau, but when the opportunity arises I keep the throttle pinned to get a taste of the top end and it doesn’t disappoint. There’s no let up in acceleration and the power just keeps on coming. When you tap into that heady top end the car feels ferocious and furious and it’s addictive.
The ride is firm but compliant and the chassis feels taught and precise, the 135i cornering hard, fast and flat, while the brakes feel strong with plenty of feel through the pedal providing massive stopping power. Oh, and it sounds good, too. Really good. That fully-decatted exhaust really lets that straight-six sing. It’s a great noise, the icing on a very fast cake indeed.
“I’m very happy with the car,” grins Sachin as I hand back the keys, though perhaps that’s why he’s smiling. “It gets lots of attention. I’m actually surprised just how much. It’s got the look I’ve always wanted and it’s the car I’ve always wanted.”
What Sachin’s done is taken a good car and made it great, which is the ultimate modifying goal. And when the end result is as impressive as this, that’s something you can be truly proud of.
Interior features carbon trim, a shortshift kit and red leather, which looks great against the grey exterior; orange brake calipers add a flash of colour.
TECHNICAL DATA FILE #BMW-E82 / #BMW-135i / #BMW-135i-E82 / #N54 / #BMW-N54 / #Mosselman-MSL500 / #Mosselman / #UUC-Motorwerks / #N54-Mosselman / #BMW-135i-Mosselman / #BMW-135i-Mosselman-E82 / #Mosselman-Stage-3 / #BMW-1-Series / #BMW-1-Series-E82 /
ENGINE 3.0-litre twin-turbo straight-six #N54B30 , #Mosselman-MSL500-N54-turbo-kit , twin oil cooler kit and oil cooler separator, induction kit, uprated intercooler, uprated low pressure fuel pump, cat-less downpipes, de-cat centre section, #Mosselman-Stage-3 remap
TRANSMISSION Six-speed manual gearbox, #UUC-Motorwerks-Stage-2 multi-puck ceramic clutch, UUC Motorwerks double-shear Evo short-shift kit
CHASSIS 9x19” (front) #Deep-Concave and 11x19” (rear) #Super-Deep-Concave-Forgestar-F14 forged wheels in gloss black with 245/35 (front) and 285/30 (rear) Continental ContiSportContact 5P tyres, #BC-Racing height and damping adjustable coilover kit, #BC-Racing front camber adjustable pillow ball top mounts, #Eibach anti-roll bars, brake calipers painted in custom orange with M decals, #Quaife-LSD
EXTERIOR Prior Design M wide-body kit consisting of front and rear bumpers, side skirts, wider front wings and wider rear quarter panels, painted MStyle carbon vented power dome bonnet, MStyle full length carbon fibre front splitter and carbon fibre rear diffuser, BMW M Performance gloss black kidney grilles, OE 1M air ducts and arch liners, OE 1M door mirrors, MStyle custom quad exhaust, SuperSprint quad tailpipes, MStyle carbon boot spoiler, full respray in Frozen grey, roof painted gloss black, Darkline E82 LCI rear lights
INTERIOR #BMW M Performance gear knob and Alcantara gaiter, #BMW-M-Performance Alcantara gaiter for handbrake
“It rides and handles brilliantly now… there’s so much grip it’s scary”Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderationStylish E93 M3 Convertible
Convertibles can't be shy, meek or discreet, they need to big, bold and proud and an Atlantis E93 M3 is all of those things… Words: Elizabeth de Latour Photos: Rash Bajwa.
Typical. You wait ages for an Atlantis blue feature car and then two come along in a row! Last month we had the pleasure of Brad Wherrett’s turbo E36 and this month it’s the turn of Jags Bath and his E93 M3. As a show regular, you’re likely to have seen Jags’ M3 doing the rounds for years and there’s certainly no missing it, finished as it is in that striking shade of blue.
Atlantis is a rare but much-loved colour, and with good reason, with this Individual shade adding a striking turquoise flash to proceedings. It’s the sort of colour we need to punch through the sea of silver and grey we see day-to-day. It’s the sort of colour that a sun-seeking ’Vert deserves to be finished in, the sort of colour you’d expect to see gliding along a West Coast beach front but which is welcome everywhere.
As seems to be a trend with this month’s features, Jags did not grow up around BMWs at all and, in fact, his first motoring adventures involved Fords – an Orion that his dad bought for him as his first car and later a Sierra Sapphire, the first car Jags bought himself and which, unsurprisingly, had its fair share of mods. But despite his time with the Blue Oval, BMWs have always been close to his heart: “I have been passionate about BMWs since I can remember,” he begins, “as I have been into cars from a very young age and BMWs have always been my favourite. I am very much a petrolhead in the sense that I love all things cars, motorsport and especially modifying cars. I have always been buying mags like Autotrader etc to check out cars and Performance BMW , Max Power, and Fast Car to check out the latest products and ideas on the modding scene.”
Modified BMW ownership was, therefore, inevitable and Jags got his first taste of Bavarian ownership with an E36 M3 Evo Convertible in Estoril blue, his other favourite colour, and at the time his dream car. Not a bad way to get a taste of what BMW has to offer. That he owns another convertible M3 comes as no surprise, though he actually started out looking to buy an M6 before the ample charms of the M3 won him over. “After a short test drive in an E92 M3 I was completely sold on the car; the V8 rumble combined with the handling and grown-up interior and the fact that the car is full of so much tech had done it for me, especially the sound! The M3 has always been my personal favourite BMW so the fact that the E92 was so good and had so many improvements, especially the DCT gearbox, meant it was the only option for me.”
There followed a nine-month long search for the perfect E93, Jags having decided he definitely wanted a convertible, but every dealer he turned to told him the same thing: there were no Individual E93s on the system.
Just as he was about to give up, what seemed to be the perfect car surfaced at a Scottish dealership, an Atlantis blue E93. You don’t need to be Sherlock Holmes to figure out how the story ended and, after a road trip to Scotland to check out the car Jags arranged to have it delivered to London and that’s where the real adventure began.
“I knew I was going to modify the car before buying it,” laughs Jags, “but I wanted to enjoy the car as it was first, so kept it standard for around a year to enjoy how it drove prior to modifying, and used this time to decide what I wanted.” While Jags was keen to enhance the car’s styling, he didn’t want to go down the route of body kits and, with some help and advice from the #MStyle team in Romford, a whole heap of carbon goodies was obtained and added to the M3.
Up front there’s a carbon splitter, which helps to fill out the bumper plus it looks awesome against the Atlantis bodywork, as does all of the carbon. The kidney grilles and bonnet vents have been changed to carbon items along with the indicators, while the headlights have been treated to a smoke tint.
At the back there’s a carbon diffuser along with an LCI tail-light upgrade, the lenses having also been tinted, and the finishing touches are custom roundels finished in black and Atlantis blue and window tints. The carbon additions alone look fantastic, but the little details really add those finishing touches and make all the difference. It’s also the details that have given the interior a bit more personality and individuality; the custom steering wheel roundel matches the exterior ones, finished in black and Atlantis, while the flatbottomed M Performance steering wheel has been treated to Atlantis stitching and a matching centre stripe. Jags has also added BMPedals brake and accelerator pedals and a matching footrest with M engraving finished in Atlantis blue and finally a pair of BMPedals extended shift paddles with Atlantis plus and minus engravings.
While Jags hasn’t done much on the engine front, he’s added a few underbonnet bits, with a pair of RPI scoops, painted yellow and with custom Atlantis RPI logos, helping to funnel plenty of cool air to a BMC drop-in air filter. And, as there’s a V8 under the bonnet, there has to be an exhaust. “If I have to pick my favourite modification it would be the Eisenmann Race exhaust,” Jags smiles. “Funny, this is one mod I was never planning on doing as I have always liked the way the car sounds, even standard and didn’t want to change it unnecessarily. I first had the OEM mod done to the standard exhaust as I had heard a similar system on a friend’s car at a BMW meet and was impressed by the more aggressive sound.
“After a few months, I decided it was time for a change. I have always wanted an Eisenmann exhaust and when I found that it makes a system for the E93, it was a must!” he exclaims. “I absolutely love the look and sound of the exhaust, two years on and the exhaust note is still just getting better and better,” he adds with a grin. The full fat Race exhaust means maximum volume, with an Evolve X-pipe and primary de-cat, for even more noise and with a V8 under the bonnet, that’s a very good thing indeed.
With styling and soundtrack sorted, we come to the wheels, an essential part of any project. Jags knew he wanted 20s with either a race or performance look to them, not too many spokes and nothing in black. “I was first thinking of going for something like #BBS Le Mans wheels, as I wanted to go for more of a DTM look,” he says, “however after a long time looking I decided to go with a five-spoke wheel, as I have always liked five-spokes – they show off the brakes and calipers well and look best in concave, which is what I wanted as it makes them look more aggressive.
“In the end I decided to go for the Cades Calisto wheels as they ticked all the boxes for me: five-spoke, concave, staggered fitment, and with a diamond cut finish with grey inserts to break it up. Most importantly the wheels went well together with the overall look of the car, which is very important when modifying. The car has to flow and all the various components should complement each other. I feel the wheels added to the car and helped to achieve the look I was going for,” says Jags and we’d have to agree with him there.
Wheel snobs might look down their collective noses at Cades, but if you said the Calisto didn’t look good you’d be straight up lying because it’s a fantastic looking wheel, it really is, and it looks way more expensive than it is, which is definitely an added bonus. The style really suits the M3 perfectly, especially with a drop in ride height courtesy of a set of Eibach springs, and the combo of polished elements and grey areas works so well; it’s a wheel that’s definitely got a lot of presence. And, with those widely spaced spokes, it would have been rude not to give the brakes a bit of a makeover, the calipers having been painted in the same shade of yellow as appears elsewhere on the car. On paper, you might not think that yellow and Atlantis blue would work together but they really do, and with such a bold colour you need some bold elements to grab your attention.
With a selection of choice mods, Jags has put together a fantastic-looking car in a fantastic colour, but he’s far from finished yet, this M3 being very much an ongoing project. His shopping list for future mods include some carbon accessories for the engine. “I’m also planning an #Evolve-Stage-2 remap,” he tells us, “a custom plenum, which has been delayed so many times now, and custom front headlights, which have also been delayed.” Jags is also thinking about trying out some different wheels, as the Cades have been on the car for four years now. All that sounds like an awesome lineup of future mods.
That’s the fantastic thing about the E9x M3, it’s an awesome car straight out-of-the box but start tapping into its potential and the sky really is the limit…
TECHNICAL DATA FILE #BMW-E93 / #BMW-M3 / #BMW-M3-E93 / #BMW-3-Series / #BMW-3-Series-Cabrio-E93 / #BMW-3-Series-E93 / #BMW-3-Series-Cabrio / #BMW-3-Series-Cabrio-M3 / #BMW-3-Series-Cabrio-M3-E93 / #S65B40 / #S65 / #BMW-S65 / #BMW /
ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION 4.0-litre V8 S65B40 , RPI air scoops resprayed in yellow with custom #RPI stickers in Atlantis blue, BMC air filter, #Evolve-X-pipe with primary de-cat, #Eisenmann Race exhaust, seven-speed #M-DCT gearbox
CHASSIS 9x20” (front) and 10.5x20” (rear) #Cades-Calisto wheels with 245/30 (front) and 285/25 (rear) #Vredestein Ultrac Sessanta tyres, #Eibach lowering springs, #EBC pads, callipers painted yellow
EXTERIOR Smoked headlights, carbon fibre front splitter, grilles, bonnet vents, indicators, rear diffuser, custom BMW roundels finished in black and Atlantis blue, smoked rear LCI light upgrade, tinted windows
INTERIOR Custom BMW roundels finished in black and Atlantis blue, custom M performance flat bottom steering wheel finished in black leather with Atlantis blue stitching and centre stripe, BMPedals footrest with M engraving and finished in Atlantis blue, BMPedals brake and throttle pedals, #BMPedals shift paddles with Atlantis blue +/- engraving
“The car has to flow and all the various components should complement each other”
20” Cades Calisto wheels look great on the M3, as does all that carbon.
“The M3 has always been my personal favourite BMW”Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderationMIGHTY FIVE Seriously styled F10 520d
FIVE STAR Big, bold and very, very blue – MStyle’s F10 520d show car is all about making a big impact. With a dazzling paint job and a heap of stunning styling mods, this F10 is guaranteed to get noticed. Words: Elizabeth de Latour. Photos: Matt Richardson.
Following on from the E60, the F10 5 Series has proved to be a pretty massive hit as well as being, well, just plain massive, really. When we first drove the car at its launch we remember thinking it felt more 7 Series than 5 Series and BMW itself admitted that the 5 Series had gone up a size mainly for the US market, where size definitely still matters.
Among its contemporaries it no longer seems like such a road leviathan but the F10 remains a superb machine, brilliantly executed and a comfortable, elegant and refined motor car. Of course, not everyone wants that and while we’ve not been inundated with modified 5 Series submissions from the worldwide BMW scene, every now and again an example of a non-standard F10 pops up that makes up for the lack of activity and proves impossible to ignore. Case in point: MStyle’s ridiculously blue F10 520d show car.
Colour plays such a big part in a car’s appeal. You could have the sexiest machine in the world but if it’s finished in some weird colour it’ll be robbed of any impact and visual appeal. Likewise, bold colours on big cars can be a risky move as it can prove to be a bit too much. Well, MStyle has chosen a pretty outrageous shade of blue for a pretty massive car and it works, it really does.
Okay, not everyone’s going to want their F10 looking as bright as this, but if you want to make an impact this is how you do it. The colour is, amazingly, a BMW factory hue and has the wonderful title of Long Beach blue.
The name certainly conjures up images of beautiful skies and azure waters, and on a rainy day in Romford? Well it serves as a retina-searing flash of colour that brightens up everything around it and delivers a dose of automotive vitamin D that makes you feel good. As there’s a blue and black combo colour scheme going on across the car, the roof has been painted black which is a good touch as it helps to break up that big block of blue and ties everything together.
Beyond the paintwork there’s a lot going on here in terms of styling, with MStyle ramping up the road presence and giving this F10 all the visual clout of a haymaker.
Step one in taking this 5 Series from refined to rowdy was the addition of MStyle’s own M-look body kit; a comprehensive package that includes front and rear bumpers, side skirts and front wings. With those massive front air intakes, wing vents and sculpted rear bumper, this 520d looks every inch the M machine and the quality, fit and finish of the body kit is absolutely spot-on. In fact, only the mirrors and lack of massive brakes give the game away as far as this car’s identity goes. The M body kit alone makes a big difference to the looks, but that wasn’t ever really going to be enough for an outfit like MStyle, so then came the carbon, lashings and lashings of carbon, which contrasts perfectly against the blue and takes this F10 to the next level.
The biggest carbon addition on the car is without doubt the bonnet, which you might not notice due to the fact that it’s been painted but the fully functional vents have been left bare and they look fantastic for it.
Sitting below the front bumper is a full-width carbon splitter while a set of MStyle black kidney grilles have been fitted and the headlights have been tinted using Lamin-X film. Heading down the side of the car you’ll spot the black side repeaters, carbon side skirt extensions and carbon mirror covers, while at the back there’s both a carbon roof spoiler and carbon boot spoiler, a gorgeous carbon rear diffuser and the only thing that could possibly fill the exhaust cut-outs on either side is the MStyle quad exhaust, with its fat round tips poking out menacingly. The finishing touch is a set of genuine BMW White line rear lights that have also been given the tinted treatment via some Lamin-X film. With all those carbon parts attached to that big blue body the car looks awesome, super-aggressive and with a tonne of road presence; it’s about as far removed from a virgin 520d SE as you could possibly imagine.
Styling sorted, a suitably muscular set of wheels was needed to fill those big arches and here MStyle was spoilt for choice as it carries an overwhelming number of wheels from countless top-end companies and for this car, the BC Forged catalogue was called upon. The chosen wheel for the F10 was the HCS-02, a two-piece forged affair with a wide-set, twin-five-spoke design. When it came to choosing the finish, MStyle opted for satin black centres with polished lips and barrels. The wheels are 21s, measuring 9.5” wide up front and a beefy 11” at the rear. They suit the car perfectly, with the centres echoing the black elements around the car and the polished lips and barrels adding a flash of colour that prevents the wheels and tyres turning into big, black shapeless circles, while the concave design adds an extra element. Killer wheels alone are no good if your car is riding like a 4x4 so a bit of lowering was required and while a set of springs would have done the job, if something is worth doing it’s worth doing right so BC Racing was called upon to provide a set of coilovers. Naturally, these are height adjustable but also offer damping adjustment to allow you to fine-tune the ride and handling characteristics. Arguably getting the car sitting just right is at least as important and MStyle’s got that spot-on here, with that big F10 body sitting mere millimetres above the tyres.
Now, you might think that’s job done as far as this F10 is concerned, but MStyle doesn’t do things by halves, so the interior has been treated to a full black Nappa leather retrim complete with custom blue stitching, with a honeycomb pattern on the seats and doorcards. It really helps to give the interior that extra touch of luxury and exclusivity, without going overboard, plus it ties in perfectly with the exterior colour combo.
The final element is the addition of a Mosselman Turbo Systems tuning module, which can be seen under the bonnet. The 520d is a surprisingly sprightly machine, the 2.0-litre diesel mill under the bonnet being blessed with a huge amount of torque that ensures even the smallest of the diesel Fives never feels sluggish, but with diesel engines responding so keenly to a little fettling, it would have been silly not to. The module simply plugs in and takes the 520d from 184 to 214hp while torque rises from 280 to 332lb ft – enough to get the big F10 off the line smartly and accelerating briskly; it’s not going to set your world alight, but it’s most definitely a welcome boost in performance.
With a car like the F10 you might be tempted to go for the subtle approach in terms of styling, but sometimes going big pays off. In one fell swoop, MStyle has transformed this F10, taking it from its humble business executive beginnings and giving it a full-on Hollywood makeover, via Romford. It’s a proper head-turning machine, and every aspect of the car’s styling has been addressed and improved upon, resulting in a car you could happily use daily, cruise in comfort on the motorway whilst enjoying very pleasant fuel economy, before parking up at a show and enjoying being the centre of attention. What more can you ask for from a car?
Contact MStyle www.mstyle.co.uk 020 8598 9115
Interior has been finished in black Nappa leather with custom blue stitching and honeycomb pattern.
Carbon fibre galore on this F10, including roof and boot spoilers plus diffuser and that vented bonnet.
MStyle has chosen a pretty outrageous shade of blue for a pretty massive car and it works.
Mosselman tuning module sits in engine bay and takes power from 184hp to 214hp with 332lb ft of torque.
DATA FILE MStyle #BMW-F10 / #BMW-520d / #BMW-5-Series / #BMW-520d-F10 / #BMW-5-Series-F10 / #BMW / #Mosselman / #N47-Mosselman /
ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION 2.0-litre four-cylinder N47D20 / N47 / BMW-N47 , #Mosselman-Turbo-Systems-Tuning-Module , eight-speed automatic gearbox / #ZF / #ZF8HP /
CHASSIS 9.5x21” (front) and 11x21” (rear) #BC-Forged-HCS-02 two-piece wheels with satin black centres, polished barrels and lips with 255/30 (front) and 295/25 (rear) tyres, #BC-Racing height and damping adjustable coilovers
EXTERIOR Full #MStyle #M-look body kit consisting of front and rear bumpers, side skirts and front wing, repainted in BMW Long Beach blue with gloss black roof, #Lamin-X tinted headlights, MStyle carbon vented bonnet, carbon front splitter, gloss black twin slat kidney grilles, gloss black side repeaters, carbon mirror covers, carbon side skirt extensions, carbon boot spoiler, carbon roof spoiler, carbon quad rear diffuser, quad exhaust, BMW Whiteline rear lights tinted using Lamin-X film, tinted windows
INTERIOR Full Nappa leather interior retrim with custom blue stitchingStream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.