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Old 18th August 2017, 16:26   #1
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Default My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

Likes;

- Looks (Both Exterior & Interior is pure old school BMW)
- Manual Transmission (Getrag 5 speed Manual feels very robust)
- Steering (Hydraulic Unit adds great pleasure)
- Exclusivity (Finding a E46 is itself difficult & finding a Manual was like finding a Unicorn)
- Mod Friendly (OEM parts from other variants & also aftermarket parts from renowned companies are easily available & Compatible)

Dislikes;

- Engine (Its a 318i, Needs Power Enhancement)
- Tight Back Seat Space (But Seats are comfortable)
- Low Ground Clearance (Not that i am complaining that its a low slung car but with 4 people on board it does scrape on that speed bump)

Video;


Last edited by karan561 : 21st August 2017 at 03:11.
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Old 19th August 2017, 16:16   #2
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Default Story & Pics !

Buy Decision;

To be honest this is the 1st pre-owned car i purchased and had never thought of buying one, but a E46 is hard to come by and that too a M/T so i did not think twice & went ahead buying it. This 318i E46 is a 2001 make but being imported into India was only registered here in 2003. I am the 2nd owner of this car & the car has done aprox 86,000 kms on the odo.

The downside of this buy was the engine which is a M43B19 (318i) and producing only 117hp, but i am sure this is something which i will have to work on to make this more fun but more on that later. This was one of those rare times you buy a car because of a gearbox as i mentioned before this is a 5 speed manual (Getrag) & one of the major influencers in my buy decision.

Brief History about BMW E46 ;

The E46 is the 4th generation of the 3 series & IMO most loved too which is pretty evident looking at the number of dedicated fan clubs & forums it has.

This generation was in production from 1998 to 2006 & was replaced by the e90 (which BMW launched in India officially).

My E46 is a pre-facelift model.

Why E46 ?;

Now, i know you guys would be thinking the risks of buying a 15 year old car but to be honest this isnt that complex like the latest BMW's which indirectly makes this pretty reliable. Also globally the popularity of e46 is so much that no matter what part would have broke in your car, someone would documented a procedure precisely on how to fix it be it on many forums dedicated for the e46 or DIY YouTube videos.

Also the exclusivity factor, i do get frequent stares, blank faces or that odd thumbs up when some informed Auto enthusiast sees this car rolling on the streets. This car needs no validation and yet still commands respect in its own way.

Distinctive Front view & unmistakably BMW from this angle;

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-kkc-e46_5.jpg

Its truly exemplary the way the car looks and how natural its lines flow;

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-kkc-e46_4.jpg

The Halo rings are aftermarket and are courtesy of the ex-owner;

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-kkc-e46_6.jpg

There's something about this car that tells us that there is more than what meets the eye.

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-kkc-e46_7.jpg

Love the flared wheel arches;

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-kkc-e46_3.jpg

The rims again were changed by the ex-owner which are after-market 17" rims by RUFF Racing. Tyres are 225/45/R17.

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-kkc-e46_2.jpg

Subtle & elegant but fierce;

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-kkc-e46_9.jpg

Seems the 1st owner had picked the optional Harmon/Kardon System - Thank You

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-kkc-e46_8.jpg

Looking back now, I am sure in the late 90's BMW weren't aware the effect this e46 will have on automobile history and an icon was in the making for years to come.

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-kkc-e46_10.jpg

Last edited by karan561 : 21st August 2017 at 02:48.
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Old 20th August 2017, 14:39   #3
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Default E46 v/s F30

Both my BMW's, the E46 & F30 side by side;

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-imageuploadedbyteambhp1503220057.951754.jpg

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-imageuploadedbyteambhp1503220120.563956.jpg

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-imageuploadedbyteambhp1503220176.384124.jpg

^ These pictures will give you an idea of how the 3 series has grown in size over the years.

However, both have a common goal of being driver focussed

Last edited by karan561 : 20th August 2017 at 19:42.
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Old 20th August 2017, 16:57   #4
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Default Mods;

The fact that i have termed it as a Project car is that there is good amount of work going to be put in the car to make it a performer & this thread will act as its build journal.

The Aim is to achieve "Driving Pleasure" & not "Speed"

Mods Planned;

1) Engine Swap (Immediate)
2) Interior Revamp (Immediate)
3) Brake Upgrade (Very Soon)
4) Coilovers Or Sport Suspension (Soon)
5) Rear Subframe Reinforcement (With the Suspension/Coilovers)
​6​) Wheels & Tyres (Soon)
​7​) Gearbox Rebuild, Short Throw Shifter (Very Soon)
​8​) Exterior Paint or Wrap ? (Near Future)
​9) ​& Other Small Upgrades (Suggestions Welcome)

The Video in Post #1 gives you a good idea about the car (Interior/Exterior), rest will keep on updating the thread as soon as the car builds

Last edited by karan561 : 21st August 2017 at 02:51.
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Old 21st August 2017, 08:59   #5
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Default re: My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

Moving into main forum. Thanks for sharing
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Old 21st August 2017, 09:43   #6
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Default re: My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

Congrats on the E46 Karan. This is the BEST looking BMW 3 Series in their entire lineup. My suggestions would be to keep the exterior as stock as possible - with only a change in the wheels (E46 M3 wheels) and get all the mod done under the hood and roof. Perfect Sleeper car!

Subscribed!

Some E46's on the forum (check out the link on the last line) :

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/test-d...aight-6-a.html (Bringing home a future Classic! BMW E46 320i 2.2L Straight-6)

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/super-...3s-bombay.html (BMW E36 / E46 M3s in Bombay)

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/super-...6-drifter.html (Gautam Singhania's E46 Drifter!)

You would be most interested in THIS one

Last edited by v12 : 21st August 2017 at 09:49.
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Old 21st August 2017, 09:47   #7
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Default re: My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

The sight of you sitting in that driving seat is getting too familiar now with your videos. Keep up the good work brother.

After owning many BMW's myself, I too have my eyes set on the E36 and E39. I've always said that if you have a hobby, it better be cars. Good purchase yo. Car looks in good shape and you said it drives well.

Tanveer 2558 introduced me to Sushila Autotechnik. These guys recently replaced the E34 engine with the M5 one, think the S63. Might wanna look into it.

Happy riding
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Old 21st August 2017, 10:07   #8
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Default re: My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

Quote:
Originally Posted by karan561 View Post
The fact that i have termed it as a Project car is that there is good amount of work going to be put in the car to make it a performer & this thread will act as its build journal.
Congratulations Karan on this awesome find, eager to see all the mods and transformation!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mijnoirhammer67 View Post

Tanveer 2558 introduced me to Sushila Autotechnik. These guys recently replaced the E34 engine with the M5 one, think the S63. Might wanna look into it.

Happy riding
S63 engine in an E34!! Wow, would be interesting to see how that massive engine fits into it!
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Old 21st August 2017, 11:28   #9
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Default re: My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

Mighty congratulations Karan! The Bimmer looks fantastic. For me, if I had to pick one BMW for my life, it has to be the E46 M3 CSL. I've forgotten the count as to how many times I've watched Jeremy's review of this brilliant car.

It'll be great if you could do the exterior mods on the lines of the CSL (I know, I know, its not a coupe to start off with but inspiration can be taken from anywhere isn't it!? )

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-car_photo_316609.jpg
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Old 21st August 2017, 12:02   #10
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Default re: My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmat View Post
Moving into main forum. Thanks for sharing
Thanks ajmat !

Quote:
Originally Posted by v12 View Post
Congrats on the E46 Karan. This is the BEST looking BMW 3 Series in their entire lineup. My suggestions would be to keep the exterior as stock as possible - with only a change in the wheels (E46 M3 wheels) and get all the mod done under the hood and roof. Perfect Sleeper car!

Subscribed!
Hey v12, Thanks for the wishes & suggestions

Quote:
Originally Posted by mijnoirhammer67 View Post
The sight of you sitting in that driving seat is getting too familiar now with your videos. Keep up the good work brother.
Thanks for your appreciation.

Quote:
After owning many BMW's myself, I too have my eyes set on the E36 and E39. I've always said that if you have a hobby, it better be cars. Good purchase yo. Car looks in good shape and you said it drives well.
Yes, but it does need work & $$$ but importantly time & effort as well.

Quote:
Tanveer 2558 introduced me to Sushila Autotechnik. These guys recently replaced the E34 engine with the M5 one, think the S63. Might wanna look into it.
Thanks, Yes im aware about them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maverick5490 View Post
Congratulations Karan on this awesome find, eager to see all the mods and transformation!
Hi Sushil,

Thanks for the wishes & support.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Porschefire View Post
Mighty congratulations Karan! The Bimmer looks fantastic. For me, if I had to pick one BMW for my life, it has to be the E46 M3 CSL. I've forgotten the count as to how many times I've watched Jeremy's review of this brilliant car.
It'll be great if you could do the exterior mods on the lines of the CSL (I know, I know, its not a coupe to start off with but inspiration can be taken from anywhere isn't it!? )
Hey Porschefire,

Thanks for your wishes & i agree the E46 M3 CSL was & is really iconic. Lets see if i can get some design elements from that into mine. May be a CSL trunk to start with.

Last edited by karan561 : 21st August 2017 at 12:06.
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Old 21st August 2017, 12:08   #11
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Default re: My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

Quick Fact;

Exactly 5 years back on 18th Aug. 2012 i had started my BMW F30 328i thread on TEAM-BHP;

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-screen-shot-20170821-11.41.13-am.png

^ Thread Link: http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/test-d...ml#post2875015 (The ULTIMAT3 - F30 BMW 328i. EDIT: Upgraded with ///M Exhaust & Injen Intake!)

Similarly 5 years later on 18th Aug 2017 i started my E46 thread which went live today i.e. 21st Aug, My Birthday the same day which i took delivery of my F30 328i

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-screen-shot-20170821-11.38.41-am.png

Thank You TEAM-BHP & fellow BHPians for this special journey

Last edited by karan561 : 21st August 2017 at 12:24.
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Old 21st August 2017, 12:31   #12
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Default re: My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

Congratulations Karan! You've picked up an icon. The E46 & E39 represent an era where cars were still mechanical (far less electronics than the E90), great looking (hate the E90's face) & offered manual transmissions (still miss my C220 sometimes). This one is a keeper. Invest in a high quality build and keep her for decades. There's something endearing about these classics.

I think the car is as lucky to have found you as you are to have gotten her home .

For those of us who prefer text over video, please share some words on the driving impressions.

Last edited by GTO : 21st August 2017 at 12:32.
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Old 21st August 2017, 13:13   #13
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Congratulations Karan! You've picked up an icon. The E46 & E39 represent an era where cars were still mechanical (far less electronics than the E90), great looking (hate the E90's face) & offered manual transmissions (still miss my C220 sometimes). This one is a keeper. Invest in a high quality build and keep her for decades. There's something endearing about these classics.

I think the car is as lucky to have found you as you are to have gotten her home .

For those of us who prefer text over video, please share some words on the driving impressions.
Thanks GTO for your wishes & kind words.

This car is indeed old school but modern enough, hence the right combination.

Posting a picture of the Manual Transmission;

My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!-imageuploadedbyteambhp1503301293.569282.jpg

Will post my driving impressions shortly.
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Old 21st August 2017, 16:10   #14
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Default re: My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

Hey Karan,

Congratulations man! Great platform to have as a project car, it has all the basics right - RWD, manual GB, Hydraulic PS, lightweight, plenty of aftermarket parts support.

I think this car was on sale in Delhi. I cannot tell you how much self-restraint I had to exercise to not go and see the car, having one car with a swapped engine is a handful(an engine swap is mandatory on this 318i), and the only reason why I did not call up the buyer.

Really interested in your choice of engine swap, and how you will be sourcing it. In my opinion using locally available blocks, GB shells, heads with imported pistons, valves, springs, and other internal parts is the easiest. Do you plan on importing a whole engine as is ?

Last edited by bhuvan_prasad : 21st August 2017 at 16:29.
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Old 21st August 2017, 16:35   #15
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Default re: My 2001 BMW 328i (E46) Project Car - Build Thread!

Ah, That E46 is a mean looking Beamer, you don't get that with the new cars. Fantastic choice, will keep an eye on this thread for upgrades.
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