Project E36 M3 – Part 2

When the “new” M3 came home, it was in dire need of some serious love in the suspension bushing department, so that was taken care of in Part 1.  In the next article, however, it was time to start making life a bit easier while waiting for the go-fast parts to start coming in.  Part 2 of Project E36 M3 allowed some time to resolve a few PITA issues with the E36.

First up was a wheel stud conversion.  BMWs come from the factory with standard wheel studs, which obviously work fine, but leave a bit to be desired in the land of efficiency.  For the average car owner, it’s not a big deal at all, but if you’ve got seasonal wheels to swap, dedicated track wheels, or if you just happen to use up brake pads a lot, wheel studs can cut your time down significantly, as well as reducing frustration.  Lining up the wheel on the hub is no longer an issue.  Plus, if you’re a racer or track addict, you’re sometimes in need of quick visits to the pits and paddock, and speed & efficiency are often crucial elements.

Cup holders in the E36 BMWs also fall into the PITA category, as they simply don’t hold anything other than a small can of Redbull, or maybe some change. That was also addressed, and the car now has genuine, real-deal cup holders capable of holding… cups!  Even small bottles.  Perfect for road trips to the track, or around town if you’re into that sort of thing. Ha!

P1060883-LWith the PITA files covered, there was still some time to kill whilst waiting for the new prototype HVT suspension to show up.  The quickest and easiest way to start tightening up the chassis and increasing feel was to add the BMW Motorsport Cross Brace, or the less-exciting-to-say “X” brace.  This not only increases steering feel significantly and adds to an overall crisper feeling in the car, but it also offers a nice level of protection to your oil pan.  It’s a very simple, yet incredibly effective factory part, and it’s just about one of the easiest items to install on an E36 M3.  


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