E30 M52 swap

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Marneus
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Marneus »

There will be lots of pics :)

Jeroen, what suspension set up do you run on your 320is?
It sits lovely & looks like it handles a treat too.


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Jeroen
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Jeroen »

Does well indeed, not too hardcore but good enough. Bilstein B8 shocks, Eibach springs (I took the slightly stronger version from the 6 cyl E30's that also makes it sit a little bit higher at the front as the S14 engine is a tad lighter, and Eibach anti roll bars (again not too extreme, otherwise I'd taken the bigger H&R's).

Here's a few trackday laps, nothing too extreme, just driving my lines on road tyres. And a bit too much panning as the camera wasn't mounted correctly so it looks like I'm throwing the car around more than I actually was doing haha





And while we're at it -dam I should go back there!- here's two in the Alps









I really love the way this car handles, but we have to thank a slightly better weight distribution with the 4 pot for that as well
Regards/groeten, Jeroen

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Marneus
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Marneus »

That looks fun :)
I'm going to build mine as more of a sports tourer, my wife wants to go driving around Europe over the next few years so I'm thinking same suspension as yours then either an M52b28 or build an M20b28 for it. I don't want huge power just 200-220bhp the same torque & reliable.

Just a pity very few E30's have air con over here ......
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Jeroen »

My girlfriend (no denying her presence in the Alps vids haha) can't think of a better way to do a trip like that than in the E30 :roll: btw the 320iS has A/C but partially due to the light color of the car we don't need it much which frees some welcome horses :wink:

Anyway, imo there's no need to go to extremes indeed and get a good combo of performance and comfort. Uprated sway bars are a fabulous upgrade.
Regards/groeten, Jeroen

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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Marneus »

Here are the photo's from the advert, I hope it's as good in the metal. The guy I'm buying it from seems genuine & I hope he is as it's 270miles from my house to the car...

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

All original, FSH, been dry stored for the last 7 years, just been recommissioned with full service inc new radiator.

Hopefully I'll be able to put some more pictures up & give a brief description of the car if I buy it on Thursday..... The one good thing about buying a car so far away from home is the long drive back :driving

Cheers

Jamie
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by uwbuurman »

looks decent! Great find!
It's the man next door!

1978 BMW 323i
1980 BMW 528i maior restitutio
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2006 BMW 320d touring High Executive
2015 BMW 320dA touring xDrive High Executive ///Msport
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Marneus »

Cheers buddy, can't wait to get it home :)
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Marneus »

I picked her up on Friday & drove her 260 miles home with no problems. Not bad for a car that hasn't been on the road since 2007.
I'm going to give her a going over this week then will start my progress/project thread. I forgot how good it is to drive a light, rear drive car. Even with the little 2l engine it's lovely to drive :)
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Jeroen »

They sure are great relatively light and well balanced cars, love them!
Regards/groeten, Jeroen

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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by brennon »

Would be good to see how you go with it, defiantly interested to see an m52 swap! I'd look for an e38 728. My buddy has one and its a front sump. Much cheaper than getting a e36 and sourcing an e34 sump! I'd use the m20 box to make the most of the single mass flywheel. Do they drop in on m20 mounts like the e21 or do they need custom mounts?
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Jeroen »

Good one to revive this thread, curious if you ran into any issues Jamie, and if you're considering such a motor swap indeed!
Regards/groeten, Jeroen

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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Marneus »

Sorry Jeroen, I completely forgot to update this. The 320 is running perfectly, I've done about 900miles in her since I got her home. There are a few little issues like broken aerial & non functioning rear passenger window but all in all I'm very happy. I've found a small amount of rust, mainly on the arches & rear valence but I'm going to treat & paint this before the winter along with another full service.
The M52 conversion will hopefully be next year (or M54b30 haven't decided yet) as I'm currently buying parts & saving for it.... I may drop an M20b25 in early next year as the 2.0 is gutless & thirsty :(

I'll get some pictures up when I'm back home to show her in more detail. On a plus my 15 month old daughter loves it, I put her recaro child seat in the front passenger seat & she laughs, points & says "wheeeeee" whenever I put my foot down :D
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by e21Keith »

I've been doing e30s for years but the M52 is a relatively new conversion. The M30 3.5 with 215bhp was popular at one point but it's a big heavy lump.

If you start with the m52 2.8 it's 197 bhp out of the box and I know that an inlet manifold swap and mild remap can improve things a little, but what are people getting out of these with mild tuning, I'm not interested in playing with the head or cams? How does it compare with the 170bhp from an m20 2.5 or 2.7?

Also how does the weight of the M52 compare with the M20 and M30? I've always found the m20 cars have been well balanced, I imagine the M50 to be about the same as the M20 with the M30 being heavier?
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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Jeroen »

That's correct, the weights on the M20 and M50 series don't differ much. As you know, when BMW moved from the M50B25 to the M50B28 the output only increased by 1 BHP. That is just bull but they did that to express the engine was more flexible, however the output did increase, but to a level that came too close to the 240 BHP US M3, and that was an unwanted side effect. On a rolling road many stock M50B28's are said to poor out abt 215 BHP already. With the M50B25 intake conversion the average M50B28 should be good for at least 220 BHP and combined with more low rev torque that makes quite a difference compared to the M20B25.
Regards/groeten, Jeroen

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Re: E30 M52 swap

Post by Marneus »

The M52 is about 20kgs lighter than the M20/M50 so not much in it. I believe that 230-240bhp is achievable without opening the engine up. With the US S52 cams 250bhp/250lbft is there for the taking which would do me & would be very useable :)
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