- 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 moderationBOLD BMW-123d Slammed and styled Austin yellow stunner
SHOW GIRL Styled and slammed 123d
With stunning Austin yellow bodywork and a whole host of dazzling mods, this 123d is a serious show stopper. Words: Elizabeth de Latour. Photos: Matt Woods. / #BMW-1-Series / #BMW-1-Series-E82 /
We’re calling it: 2016 is the year of the 1 Series. Okay, the 3 Series remains our most prolific feature car, as it always has done, but this year we’ve seen amazing 1 Series after amazing 1 Series, almost one an issue and there’s no sign of this influx of perfectly modified baby BMs letting up anytime soon. As far as we’re concerned, that’s a very good thing, as this gorgeous 123d Coupé perfectly illustrates.
Regular show-goers will know this car very well as it can usually be spotted at most events throughout the year and often leaving with some kind of silverware, though owner Dee Barwick deserves at least some of the credit, she did build it after all. It is the latest in a long line of cars that she’s owned, which includes a Sharpie’d MX-5 (more of that sort of thing later…), a classic Mini, a Mk3 Golf GTi (the latter of which was replaced by her first BMW for reasons of child-based practicality) and an E46 320i. Dee bought the car completely standard but, after tinting the windows to keep her kids cool, her partner James, owner of the equally well-known E46 that we featured back in our November ’15 issue, suggested modifying the E46. So she did. The unsuspecting saloon ended up being wrapped in cream, with an M3 front bumper and a set of cross-spokes, and it looked good. Dee was happy, or at least until she saw a 1 Series Coupé at the Santa Pod show and decided that she needed one of those in her life. As luck would have it, James worked at MStyle at the time and regular customer, Jas Bassan, came in one day talking about selling his 123d and that’s what he did, to Dee.
Judging by how the car looks now, having started off silver and pretty ordinarylooking, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Dee had gone into the 1 Series ownership experience with big plans. However the car was intended for daily duties, with James’ M3 serving as the toy but things clearly didn’t work out that way: “Within two days it had been dropped,” she laughs, “and then we fitted the carbon rear diffuser and carbon mirror caps.” And so it began. As with many projects it was necessity caused by problems that let to modifications instead of repairs; for example, soon after its purchase a puncture appeared which James said he would sort out at work: “The car came home on coilovers, with spacers and stretched tyres,” Dee says, laughing. “After two weeks James drove it into the back of a van,” cue more laughter from everyone except James at this point, “which was a good excuse for an M Performance front bumper,” and we’d be inclined to agree. The M Performance bumper is a great choice, blending perfectly with the rest of the car’s styling but its clean, aggressive design is very distinctive and it really makes the car look a lot wider and more purposeful. This was accompanied by a pair of very smart-looking Depo headlights, complete with angel eyes and dipped beam projector lenses, which really help to clean up the front end.
While a colour change is something that many of us think about, it’s usually something that happens in the latter stages of ownership, once you’ve put in the work to get your car looking just right. Especially if you car’s already a decent colour, like the silver this 123d was to begin with. But while Dee may not have had much in the way of modifying plans when she bought her 1 Series, changing the colour was always on the cards. “The moment I bought it I knew I was going to be changing the colour,” she says and there followed a long period of indecision, with James Photoshopping the two front runners on to the car to help a decision to be reached.
“It was either going to be Yas Marina blue or Austin yellow,” Dee explains. Both are striking choices and brand-new to the BMW colour palette having been launched on the M3 and M4. “I was struggling to decide between them so I went to see a couple of M4s in both colours and in the end it had to be Austin yellow.” We’re going to say good choice because while Yas Marina is very nice and distinctive, Austin has that wow factor. Its rich yellow blending into gold really makes it stand out and it looks glorious whatever the weather, whatever the light. It’s exactly the sort of colour you want for a show car and one that’s guaranteed to get you noticed.
While the colour change is a big deal, Dee didn’t rest on her laurels and put in the effort with the additional supporting touches and that’s what really makes the difference here. Black and gold is a classic combo, so that the car’s been fitted with black grilles is a given. The mirrors and roof have also been sprayed black, but it’s not just any black. This is Subaru Java black pearl and what’s special about this colour is that it’s black with a yellow flake; it’s very subtle, you’d barely even notice it if you didn’t know, especially on a dull day but, when the light hits it, all those yellow flakes glow, and the end result is not only a little bit magical, but it’s a brilliant way of seamlessly tying those prominent black elements in with that blindingly bold bodywork.
Additional exterior tweaks include smoothed boot and bonnet roundels, a Rhinolip front splitter, BMW M Performance rear spoiler and dark smoke window tints. Even the engine bay has been given the black and yellow treatment but it’s the interior where things get really special. The first step was getting rid of the textured M Sport interior trims and replacing them with a set of plain, smooth trims, ripe for modifying which, initially, involved wrapping them in a cityscape design. It looked cool and was definitely different, but once the car went Austin, it wasn’t right. That’s when Dee’s artistic streak kicked in and the legacy of the Sharpie’d MX-5 returned.
The interior trims were removed, sprayed Austin yellow and then the Sharpies came out and, after going through countless pens and spending hours and hours on each piece, Dee had created a truly unique design for her trims. It looks absolutely fantastic, an incredibly intricate design that someone less talented would have inevitably ruined and someone less patient would have got bored with after five minutes, but Dee’s dedication definitely paid off and you’re not going to find anything like this in any other cars anytime soon.
The attention to detail with the colour scheme continues in the boot where the warning triangle case, not something a lot of people are ever going to see, has been painted in Austin yellow and most of the capacious boot is taken up by a pair of JL subs mounted in a hefty enclosure. As far as wheels are concerned the 123d is on its third set now and arguably its best.
“When I bought the car it was on Dare RSs,” says Dee, “so obviously they had to go. I started looking at 3SDMs and initially wanted the six-spoke 0.06s but they were everywhere and that’s when I decided to go for the 0.04s instead.”
For those unfamiliar with these wheels they are concave directional multi-spokes, and they look good, really quite different to most things out there and they looked great on the 1 Series, finished in silver and running the large centre cap option. “I was really pleased with the wheels but then everyone started buying them,” laughs Dee, “so I decided to change them again. I saw these Ispiri CSR1Ds and liked them immediately. They reminded me of the Corvette sawblades that I had wanted for the car. I knew I was going to buy them, but I couldn’t decide whether to go for silver or gold…”
As you can see, gold won and we reckon it was definitely the right decision. In fact, the colour match is so good with the Austin bodywork that it almost looks like a custom spray job on the wheels; even the outer edges of the lips are finished in gold from the factory. Dee also says that she reckons the dished design suits the look of the 1 Series better than the concave 3SDMs and we’re in agreement. The wheels sit on 12mm spacers to get the fitment just right.
With a twin-turbo diesel mill under the bonnet that responds very well to tuning it’s no surprise that Dee has thrown some gofaster mods into the mix. The exhaust looks non-standard and sounds decidedly fruity, a result of the decidedly free-flowing custom system, which starts from the manifold and runs through a DPF and resonator. The latter, says Dee, will go, but the DPF will remain because it helps keep the 123d’s rear end relatively soot-free; important when your car’s such a bright colour and you’re a show regular. Under the bonnet sits a K&N panel filter for improved breathing while a Mosselman remap gives an impressive increase in performance, taking power up to 242hp along with 354lb ft of torque.
A lot of work has gone into this 123d but, more than just that, there’s a lot of care, attention to detail and planning, none of the modifications you see before you have been added without some degree of prior planning. The end result is one of the most eye-catching Ones we’ve seen and this little BM gets a lot of love wherever it goes.
Dee’s not done just yet, though, with immediate plans for getting the engine bay looking a bit more special and bigger, and long term plans that include a possible engine swap and seats and a cage once the kids are older and we don’t doubt that all of that will happen because this 1 Series isn’t going anywhere. It has to hang around anyway because, for now, the modifying has been put on hold as Dee and James are engaged and saving for their wedding, so congratulations are in order. As soon as that’s out of the way, though, the 123d will take centre stage in Dee’s life once more and we can’t wait to see where it goes from here…
“The moment I bought it I knew I was going to be changing the colour”
TECHNICAL DATA FILE #BMW-E82 / #BMW-123d / #BMW-123d-E82 / #N47D20 / #N47 / #BMW-N47 / #Ispiri / #Mosselman /
ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION 2.0-litre four-cylinder twin-turbo N47D20, #K&N panel filter, centre and rear box delete with twin tips, #Mosselman performance remap, #Sprint booster, six-speed manual gearbox
CHASSIS 8.5x18” (front) and 9.5x18” (rear) #Ispiri-CSR1D wheels in vintage gold with 12mm TPi spacers (front and rear) and 205/40 (front) and 225/35 (rear) Nankang NS20 tyres, fully polybushed, Supersport height and damping adjustable coilovers
EXTERIOR Full respray in BMW Austin yellow with Subaru Java black roof and mirrors, BMW M Performance front bumper, Rhinolip front splitter, #Depo-V2 headlamps, yellow inner bulbs, BMW M Performance black kidney grilles, carbon fibre rear diffuser, #BMW-M-Performance carbon rear spoiler, smoothed bonnet roundel, smoothed boot roundel, dark smoke window tints
INTERIOR ‘Sharpie art’ interior trims painted Austin yellow, twin JL Audio sub box and JL Audio amp
THANKS James Barrett for finding me the car and Jas Bassan for letting her go, Mercury auto refinishing for the paintwork, Barrett Motorwerks for the wheels and mods, PBMW for this feature, but most off all James for the help, guidance and support!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.
- Post is under moderationThis mean-looking #BMW-M4-Convertible / #BMW-M4-Convertible-F83 is packing over 600hp thanks to its Mosselman hybrid turbo setup and it’s a bit of a beast. Words: Bob Harper. Photography: Matt Richardson. Mosselman’s wild M4. White Mischief Fancy an M4 Convertible with over 600hp? Then join us in sampling Mosselman’s version.
You could just about guarantee it, couldn’t you? A week of sunshine and dry roads either side of an ‘off’ day – a day of low brooding cloud laden with rain; the type of weather that sets in and wets you through to the bone. It’s not a day to be testing a 600hp M4 Convertible, but that’s exactly what we’re attempting to do as we arrive at M Style’s Romford HQ dressed head-to-toes in the North Face’s finest wet weather gear.
The sight of M Style’s demonstrator does help to lift our spirits, though, as even with the dark sky the Mineral white M4 really stands out, especially with the serious amount of goodies which have been fitted to it. It looks mean and moody and while the effect might be even more dramatic if the car were black, my photographer for the day is delighted that it’s a nice bright colour. White cars photograph well in virtually all conditions although, having said that, the sky’s so threatening I can imagine little snowflakes falling if we linger too long. And white cars and snow definitely don’t mix… especially 600hp ones.
So what’s this car had done to it? It doesn’t take much to see that it’s had a serious dose of attitude added to it and it’s almost a little bit of a mind teaser trying to work out which element of the car makes the biggest difference. Eventually we settle on the wheels – they’re a pretty enormous set of BC Forged, lightweight, three-piece alloys measuring 9.5x20 inches at the front and a whopping 12x20 inches at the rear. They’re wrapped in Hankook Ventus S1 Evo2 rubber, 255/30s at the front and 325/25s at the rear, and if ever the phrase ‘filling the arches’ was ever more appropriate, we’re not sure when. Aiding the visual element of the M Style demonstrator is a ride height that’s been lowered thanks to the installation of a Mosselman track coilover suspension system that offers the expected height adjustment but which also offers adjustable damping via BMW’s factory EDC controller.
The rest of the exterior package on this M4 is taken care of by a selection of M Style’s carbon fibre goodies with the front spoiler extension being the most obvious addition. Combined with the car’s lowered ride height it really gives it a hunkered-down stance, although we’re not sure we’d want our everyday road car to be quite that low; we’d end up having nightmares about catching it on an errant curb or a raised manhole cover! There’s also a set of carbon fibre front kidney grilles and, along the side of the car, you’ll find a set of carbon fibre side skirt splitters – a thin strip of carbon fibre running the length of the car in between the wheels. It looks particularly good on this white machine. The M4 side gill covers are also in carbon, while at the rear there’s a stylish and nicely positioned carbon boot spoiler. It’s not over-the-top and the M4 looks all the better for it. You might also spot the rear diffuser, also carbon, surrounding the exhaust.
Having said that it is somewhat hard to get a proper look at the rear diffuser as it’s utterly dominated by the monstrous Mosselman exhausts – four 90mm slash cut tips are just the part you can see. Underneath they’re attached to a complete Mosselman system. This features cat-less downpipes, 200-cell sports cats, a de-silenced centre section, and a flap control rear exhaust. Given all this exhaust work it’s somewhat surprising that it’s quite so muted and unobtrusive when gently manoeuvring the car for photography – always the hallmark of a decent setup as you really don’t want to sound like you’re trying to break the sound barrier whilst pottering along.
You may have got an inkling from all this exhaust work that perhaps the engine in this M4 isn’t entirely standard. Perhaps the biggest giveaway, though, is the Mosselman decal set proclaiming 620PS. As the UK’s approved agent for Mosselman systems, M Style can do a number of different upgrades, starting with remapping and tuning box upgrades (500hp and 457lb ft) moving all the way along to the Stage 3 setup we have here. There’s even a Stage 3.1 setup that brings power slightly higher but this one does away with the cats, which brings you into slightly dubious ground when it comes to MoT time a couple of years down the line. So we’ll stick to the Stage 3 setup we have here whose headline figures are a not insignificant 606hp and 553lb ft of torque. At the heart of this setup are a pair of Mosselman hybrid turbochargers and, fortunately in this case, we’re not talking about adding a battery pack for the hybrid part of the setup.
Mosselman’s MSL620 hybrid-turbochargers are upgraded in multiple areas, such as compressor, turbine and bearings specifications. The TF035 MHIdesigned turbochargers are upgraded to a TD04 MHI frame with a 45mm compressor wheel and 41.3mm turbine wheel for ultimate performance. Like all of Mosselman’s turbochargers, the MSL620 was designed and produced at the company’s in-house facility in the Netherlands. The company has been engineering turbo systems for both OEM and aftermarket applications since the 1970s and now, with the BMW tuning market having gone almost full circle and returning to forced induction, Mosselman is once again back at the forefront of this technology.
Mosselman argues that spool-up is only slightly compromised with its hybrid system while making significant improvements on the compressor output. Together with the reduced turbine back pressure and increased reliability, Mosselman reckons this is the perfect hybrid for the S55. Where the Mosselman system does score is that it’s a virtually plug and play system – granted a fairly complicated plug and play system – but it looks virtually standard and there’s no need to open up the engine’s internals either. Along with the hybrid turbos also comes an uprated oil thermostat, too.
That’s the theory, so how does it work in practice? Now this is where the rain really tried to ruin the day. It was bad enough trying to dry the M4 for the photos when it was raining, which was a bit like attempting to paint the Forth road bridge; by the time we’d reached the rear the front needed doing again. But when it came to trying to put down a smidgen over 600hp on damp roads, we really did start to struggle. Driving briskly wasn’t really too much of a problem as the large rear boots manfully managed to find some grip on the damp Tarmac, but attempting full throttle in the lower gears demonstrated that in the wet this car could be a real handful. Many motoring scribes have levelled that accusation at the standard M4 so it should come as less of a surprise that a car with nearly 50 per cent more power is going to struggle to transmit its power to the road.
That’s not to say that we didn’t get a little bit of a decent drive in the Mosselman-equipped M4. The way to get the best from the car in these conditions is to go for a higher gear than you would normally and let the torque do the work – it has significantly over 500lb ft after all. Driven in this manner it proved to be very rapid indeed. Without a standard M4 sitting next to us it was hard to say how much faster this car is, but it certainly felt like it would demolish the stock machine. And Mosselman’s promise that the hybrid turbos would only have a very marginally longer spool up time seemed to be correct as we really didn’t notice any pause in the power delivery while we waited for the turbos to start strutting their stuff.
One area where the Mosselman setup really does score over the standard machine is in the noise it makes. As mentioned, at lower revs and when not at full throttle it’s really rather cultured and not significantly noisier than the standard car, but get some revs on the dial or select Sport with the Drive Performance Control switch and it becomes a very different animal indeed. It has a wide vocal range, too, starting off with a bass-rich performance before becoming higher in timbre, reminding us a little of the raspiness of an E46 M3. From there on up it crescendos in a wall of noise sounding very menacing and in perfect step with the car’s character.
The conditions did mean that it was hard to get a real feel for the Mosselman suspension setup, but we did perhaps feel that the 20-inch rims might be a step too far for our tastes in a convertible. The standard machine just about gets away with 19s, and having sampled a Competition machine on 20s in the UK we’d reckon our roads simply aren’t up to the bigger wheels. They certainly look stunning and fill the arches more than adequately, but if it were our car we think we’d be looking at a set of 19-inch wheels as a better compromise. At normal velocities the chassis setup felt fine when you were on a smooth piece of road but when the surface got lumpy the ride was a little jittery. This may well be a feature of the car’s ride at lower speeds, as we’ve come across plenty of setups that don’t really come alive until you’re travelling at speed, but we’d really need to sample the car in the dry and for a more extended test-drive to thoroughly evaluate it.
Overall, though, the Mosselman setup for the M4 seemed to be pretty sweet. The hybrid turbo setup and the exhaust work comes in at a fiver shy of £9000 (including VAT and fitting) which seems like pretty good value when you consider the gains that are being made. It’s just a shame that Mosselman can’t fettle the weather, too.
CONTACT: M Style / Tel: 020 8598 9115 / Web: www.mstyle.co.uk
When it comes to trying to put down a smidgen over 600hp on damp roads, we really did start to struggle.
The Mineral white M4 really stands out, especially with the serious amount of goodies which have been fitted to it.
TECHNICAL DATA #BMW-Mosselman / #BMW-M4 / #BMW-M4-F82 / #BMW-M4-Mosselman / #BMW-M4-Mosselman-F82 / #Mosselman / #BMW-S55 / #S55 / #S55-Mosselman / #BMW-M4-F83 / #BMW-F83 / #BMW-M4-Mosselman-F83 / #BMW-M4-F83 / #Mosselman-MSL620 / #2016
ENGINE: 3.0-litre, straight-six, petrol twin-turbo with uprated #Mosselman-hybrid-turbo conversion, uprated oil thermostat, Mosselman complete exhaust system including cat-less downpipes, 200-cell sports cats, de-silenced centre section, flap control rear section and quad 4x90mm slash cut tailpipes, engine tuning custom software remapping, carbon fibre Mosselman engine cover
MAX POWER: 606hp
MAX TORQUE: 553lb ft
WHEELS/TYRES: #BC-Forged , three-piece, lightweight alloy wheels from BC, 9.5x20-inch (front) with 255/30 Hankook Ventus S1 Evo2, and 12x20-inch (rear) with 325/25 Hankook Ventus S1 Evo2
SUSPENSION: #Mosselman track coilover suspension system, height adjustable, damping adjustable (through BMW factory EDC controls) and intelligent damping control to enhance handling during fast cornering
INTERIOR: M-style carbon fibre gear lever and M-style steering wheel trims
EXTERIOR: M-style racing carbon front spoiler splitter, M-style carbon fibre front kidney grilles, M-style carbon fibre side skirt splitters, #M-style racing carbon fibre rear diffuser wide version, M-style carbon fibre bootlip spoilerStream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderationTHE GREY
Building an #BMW E46 M3 that stands out from the crowd is no mean feat, and this UK example is one of the best around. Fully fettled, fast and ferocious, this predatory M3 is hungry like the wolf… Words: Elizabeth de Latour. Photos: Steve Hall.
The E46 M3 is an awesome car. It’s supremely affordable, fast, a joy to drive, practical and can even be considered economical. It is arguably one of the greatest performance bargains of our time. Unfortunately, as is often the case, when a car is good and affordable it becomes popular and when a car is popular it becomes rather difficult to make it stand out from the crowd. People will often end up doing the same sorts of mods, not because they are sheep but because those are the best mods to do. Creating something different can be quite difficult, something that affects all popular 3 Series models in particular, but James Barrett has faced that challenge head-on and emerged victorious.
Those in the UK modified BMW scene may well recognise that name because for quite some time James was the go-to guy at M Style for customers looking to spice up their BMs. You may well recognise the car, too, because it is a show regular and has enjoyed more than its fair share of internet fame and with good reason: it’s a stunner! As you may expect from someone who has been at the heart of the modified BMW scene for so long, James has a car history filled with BMWs, and it’s a surprisingly varied mix of BM machinery at that. There’s been an E65, an E60, an E46 and an E36 before James purchased this E46 M3 just over two years ago. It was a car he’d always wanted and so the mods began in earnest.
As is often the case, the modifying avalanche was triggered by one simple act: fitting some carbon grilles. “It all went from there,” chuckles James. “I had intended to leave the car in its original Titan silver after doing the carbon grilles but one of the wings was slightly off in colour; I wanted to get it taken care of but didn’t want to end up chasing it round the car to try and get it to match perfectly so I decided to do a full colour change. I wanted something that hadn’t been done before, but that was subtle at the same time.” The colour James settled on was Lamborghini Grigio Telesto, a spectacular solid grey, making his the first E46 M3 to sport this look. Considering how unexciting grey is as a colour, it actually makes a big impact because it’s so unusual and definitely makes the car stand out.
Before the respray James had managed to catch his splitter on a kerb, damaging the bumper in the process. This seemed like a good excuse to fit a CSL front bumper, always a good idea, and he also smoothed the intake hole for a cleaner look.
The interior of this particular M3 has also gone through something of a transformation. It was originally black, before James swapped in a red leather interior. However, when he decided to fit a purple roll-cage he went back to black as the red and purple simply wouldn’t work together. Purple might seem like an unlikely colour choice for the roll-cage but it was all part of James’ plan. “I wanted a colour that would complement the grey,” he explains. “The grey looks lighter when the sun hits it and so does the Merlin purple. I think that they work really well together. I had initially considered candy red for the cage and wheels but then I figured that it would have taken away from the stealthy look of the car.” Merlin purple is (whisper it) an Audi colour but it’s a darn good-looking one and quite a subtle hue, adding a flash of colour in the black and grey interior.
Speaking of wheels, the E46 M3 is a car with which it is hard to go wrong when it comes to choosing wheels. Get the right combination and everything from dish to concave can look absolutely killer. The only hard part is making an original choice – so many aftermarket wheels have been done to death already by the modifying masses. Fortunately James has nailed it with his current choice. “I had #CSL wheels originally,” he says, “but silver wheels on a grey car looked odd. Plus, everyone has CSL wheels on M3s. I wanted something different and when I saw the gunmetal #Quantum44-S1 s I knew they were perfect.”
Quantum44 has produced some extremely good looking wheels but it isn’t a brand that you’re likely to see on every show car around, making this concave ten-spoke wheel a distinctive design. The dark colour coordinates with the overall look of the car, and the interior theme is echoed in the callipers which are finished in Merlin purple. 10mm spacers up front and 20mm items at the rear get the fitment spot-on and the 19s fill the arches perfectly thanks to the aggressive drop that James has dialled-in on his D2 Racing coilovers.
Elsewhere you may have spotted the CSL bootlid, with its smoothed badge and lock. It was fitted when the car was still silver, along with the smoked indicators, matt black roof, CSL diffuser and ACS roof spoiler. These have since been joined by a whole host of subtle but effective exterior tweaks including a full-width carbon splitter, tinted front lights with smoked inner bowls and Umnitza angel eyes, all-red LED rears and plenty of carbon touches, like the wing vents and carbon washer jet panel.
Being an M3 you’d be disappointed if there wasn’t a little bit of performance boost, so you’ll be pleased to hear that James has fitted a K&N induction kit with carbon intake, a Mosselman remap and a set of 100-cell sport cats while the SMG has been treated to a CSL software update for faster shifts.
At this point the car was looking pretty awesome all-round but James still wasn’t finished and he now turned his attention to the interior to really finish it off. The dash and doors have been flocked, the latter offering a fantastic contrast against the gloss grey of the body-coloured door panels, and the standard seats have been unceremoniously removed and replaced with a pair of extremely sexy Cobra Monaco seats complete with Sparco three-point harnesses.
The dash trims and gear lever surround have been finished in matching Lambo grey and James has also fitted a Storm Motorwerks titanium gear knob and ring plus a set of extended Rogue Engineering paddles. The rear seats have been ditched and back there you will now find a pair of 12” #JL-Audio subs along with a JL amp.
In just over two years James has done a lot of work and all his effort shines through as the end result is stunning. The attention to detail here is really impressive and he’s paid attention to every element of the car: the aesthetics (both inside and out); the handling; and the performance. No part of the car has gone untouched and every modification has been planned and executed with purpose and planning.
“I’m very happy with how the car has turned out,” grins James, “it’s exactly how I pictured it would be. I spent ages going through the various options I had at every stage, trying to visualise how it would all tie together as I really wanted to get it right.” Well, he has succeeded there then, although possible plans for the future include a BBK, Quantum’s new curved-spoke S5D wheels and, if funds allow, a supercharger. Whatever the future holds, one thing is for certain: this grey M3 won’t be dull!
TECHNICAL DATA FILE #BMW-M3-E46 / #S54B32-TUNED / #BMW-M3 / #BMW-E46 /
ENGINE & TRANSMISSION 3.2-litre straight-six #S54B32 / #S54 , carbon engine cover, #K&N induction kit with carbon intake, 100-cell sport cats, #Mosselman remap, #Sprint-Booster , Eurostyle exhaust tips. Six-speed SMG gearbox, CSL software update.
CHASSIS 8.5x19” (front) and 9.5x19” (rear) #Quantum44 S1 matt gunmetal wheels with 225/35 (front) and 255/30 (rear) Falken tyres, 15mm (front) and 20mm (rear) TPI spacers, #D2-Racing coilovers, #Turner-Motorsport subframe reinforcement kit, full Powerflex bush kit, Rogue Engineering top mounts.
EXTERIOR Full respray in Lamborghini Grigio Telesto, CSL front bumper with smoothed intake hole, full width carbon splitter, Lamin-x subtle tint front lights with smoked inner bowl, Umnitza Angel eyes, 8000K xenon upgrade, smoothed bonnet, CSL bootlid with smoothed badge and lock, carbon CSL diffuser, carbon wing vents, carbon kidney grilles, matt black roof, red/smoked LED rear lights, light smoke window tints, AC Schnitzer roof spoiler, carbon washer jet panel, Audi Merlin purple calipers.
INTERIOR Body coloured CSL doorcard inserts, body coloured dash trims and gear surround, flocked dash, flocked door cards, Weichers Type B half-cage painted Audi Merlin purple, Storm Motorwerks titanium #SMG ring and gear knob, #AC-Schnitzer pedals and footrest, Rogue Engineering extended paddles, Cobra Monaco seats, Sparco three-point harnesses, rear seat delete, 2x JL audio 12” subs, JL audio amp.
THANKS Paul and the boys at MStyle for the majority of the work, Abe at Low Expectations clothing, Ad at Strictly Static, Ollie at Absolute Detailing, Ray at Absoflockinlutely, and most of all my better half Dee Barwick for putting up with my paintwork OCD and patience with me when things didn’t quite go to plan!
Gunmetal Quantum44 19s are the perfect match for the paint; purple and carbon details add the finishing touches.
Rear seats have been ditched and the space is now occupied by two 12” subs and a Merlin purple roll-cage.
Cobra Monaco seats up front with flocked dash and #Storm-Motorwerks goodies.
I decided to do a full colour change. that hadn’t been done before I wanted something.
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