Learn How To Tune Your BMW E36M By An Example

Learn How To Tune Your BMW E36M By An ExampleTuning the chassis of BMW E36 M3

After styling the exterior, it's time to engage ourselves in chassis tuning. Although factory suspension components were replaced with KW products, the latter hold out for a short while, because our action man's company went at promoting another suspension brand – Weitec. Correspondingly, the KW struts were superseded with an adjustable coil spring suspension.

Having no opportunity for comparing different options, we call on the car's owner to speak: “It is cheaper and, in my opinion, it feels less rigid and works better on small potholes”. And finally the space between strut seats in engine and boot rooms was occupied by strut tower braces from OMP and Wieschers. The current owner of the car doesn't care much about the fact that such serious modifications affect the factory handling characteristics, which were perfected by top-ranked German testers for more than a month.

Non-type wheels with Kerscher spacers increased the front and rear track width, which improved both hadleability and eye appeal of the vehicle. As for other, equally important parameters, like kingpin offset, most likely no one thought about them. The image is all we need! But considering the moderate driving style of our action man and a virtually total absence of places where the vehicle could approve its inherent characteristics to the full extent, such an approach can be regarded as fully justified.

Despite most experts consider the 6-cylinder in-line M3 engine to be one of the best naturally aspirated motors, the tuning masters paid attention to its technical specs. With a separate fitting, they installed a zero resistance air filter from Power Enterprize, while the control module received a firmware upgrade to the Racing Dynamics version. It allowed for increasing the car's power output from standard 321 hp to 350-360 hp (however, the vehicle wasn't tested in the chassis dynamo).

But it's all not only about the control module: the exhaust system also played a great role; it was assembled from Supersprint components, including the collector. Only the silencer suppresses the exhaust noise, while all other elements create virtually no resistance to exhaust gases. The firm manufactures a variety of exhaust systems: “civil” variants with catalyst, “half-civil” and sportive without any catalyst. The middle part of this M3 is the hardest variant. But the attained performance level in not the limit.

Our action man intends to install new Schrick cam shafts to increase the output to 400 hp, but so far it's only an intension. The transmission's reliability is not debatable: the 6-stage manual gearbox in combination with cerametallic OMP clutch can manage even more. By the way, the latter will most likely soon be replaced with a complete Sachs kit. The brakes are also undoubtedly proficient: standard M-Sport supports work coupled with perforated brake disks from Zimmermann.