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The Showroom
This is the place to show off your BMW to other members of the community. Post pictures and videos of your car and the modifications you have done to it. If you need a picture of something on a coupe, sedan, convertible or touring you will probably find it here!

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Old 01-11-2016, 11:01 AM   #1
95///M3
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Join Date: Feb 2005
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My Ride: 95 M3 LTW M5 2002tii
E46 Touring - S54 Swap - Build Thread!

2002 JapanRot E46 325i Touring:



Car began as a stock 325it auto and I decided to swap an S54 and associated drivetrain into my 02 325i touring when a crashed E46 M3 showed up on Craigslist. I pulled the following from the donor car to be swapped from front to back:

Rad support and associated fan, etc.
S54, accessories, and all wiring
Cluster
Front struts and brakes
Fuel Pressure Regulator
Transmission
Driveshaft
Fuel pump, sending unit, hard fuel lines
Rear subframe and brakes




Engine prep:

Replaced all of the VANOS Seals from VanosFix.com
Replaced VANOS solenoid pack from VanosFix.com
Replaced all of the VANOS bolts with OEM S54 Z4M bolts
Replaced CPV with Kassel Performance CPV Viton O-Ring
Performed Valve adjustment
Installed new OEM BMW Rod Bearings








Trans:
New LUK DMF flywheel
New LUK clutch kit
Amsoil MTF

Subframe:
Replaced all control arm bushings with Lemfoerder units
Replaced subframe and diff bushings with poly units from RevShift - 80A
Amsoil Severe Gear 75W140 diff fluid



Suspension

Replaced front struts with E46 M3 Bilstein Sports
Replaced all springs with E46 M3 Eibach lowering springs
Rogue Engineering FCAB's installed in Non-M FCAB's





Brakes
E46 M3 front brakes - Machined carriers .25"
E46 M3 rear brakes


Then, the wagon was pulled in on a Wednesday at 630PM and we started to remove the M54. I found it easiest to drop the subframe and take everything out from the bottom. The E46 wagon stock control arms, knuckles, and steering rack were re-used. I bolted the S54 up to the subframe and lowered the chassis back onto the front subframe. Ultimately we drove the vehicle back out on Friday very late in the night. Total time was just over 2 days.



The rear subframe was swapped for the M unit. Install was quite simple and bolts right up to the wagon. Poly bushings and OEM bushings were all replaced. The E46 M3 rear brakes were used. 325i speed sensors were used as the DSC from the original car was kept in place.

Transmission bolts right up. New flywheel and clutch were installed. Both OEM. The E46 M3 slave and E46 325i master cylinder were used with no issues. All mounts and shifter bushings were replaced. The E46 M3 6 speed linkages were used. An E39 M5 illuminated wooden knob was sourced. The boot was removed so the E46 boot could be used:



Engine was mounted with poly mounts from RevShift (80A). The secondary air pump was blocked off with OEM plate and gasket. The coolant expansion bottle is now only held in place with one bolt as I forgot to remove the additional M3 bracket from the donor vehicle. The coolant level sensor wiring was extended to the passenger side and plugged right in. The M3 windshield washer tank did NOT fit behind my stock bumper. There were multiple clearance issues. A custom aluminum tank was built to mount behind the bumper; however, many stock BMW tanks could be used in the rear bin if desired. The connections needed to be extended for the pump and level sender.

The ECU was setup with a performance tune and EWS delete as well as a few other modifications. The electronics were converted per this chart:



The stock green E46 fuel pump relay was kept in place.

The M3 instrument cluster was re-programmed by Kassel Performance. Everything works per the M3 and shows the correct chassis mileage! No error lights or tamper dot! Also, after the VIN was recoded, the DSC module came back online and the traction control was working again per the original vehicle. The remaining modules in the car needed to be reprogrammed as well as the car was once auto.

Before:


After:


Next up was the exhaust. A Rogue Engineering rasp eliminator pipe was used along with stock headers and stock rear section. The rear most section was cut right behind the last resonator and an E36 M3 Active Autowerk catback was cut up and used. The hangers on the AA pipe were moved, and it was actually a pretty close overall fit. A small section (about 12") of straight stainless tube was used to butt the OEM piece up with the E36 unit. The E36 catback was used due to the output design for the stock rear bumper and the fact that it was laying around not being used.





The Eibach/Bilstein suspension combo from the E46 was pulled and installed front and rear on the touring. The front struts don't taper like the non-M struts and sit higher in the knuckle. Subsequently, ride height with the lowering springs was approximately the same as the stock touring sport suspension. OEM 15mm spring pads were added to the rear to even out the ride height. Rogue Engineering FCAB helped to finish off the front end. Both M3 swaybars were used along with the M end links.

Recap:
E46 M3 Bilstein front struts
E46 M3 Eibach springs all around
E46 M3 Bilstein rear shocks
E46 M3 swaybars and end links
E46 325i front knuckles
E46 325i front control arm bushings upgraded to RE pieces
E46 325i stock Lemfoerder control arms
E46 15mm raised rear rubber spring pads

Final ride height:


The only truly custom piece other than the exhaust was that the windshield washer reservoir had to be custom made to mount behind the bumper. The E46 M3 bottle did not find behind my stock bumper, contrary to what has been posted on the web.

Next up will be a full MTech2 kit along with M3 mirrors. Both parts are due in any day and will be installed as soon as they have been painted. A different wheel package will be added in the spring




Hopefully this thread can be used as a pretty good source for anyone looking to swap an S54 into a non-M. I hope that I covered most of the frequently asked questions, but if not, please feel free to ask!



EDIT: Built another one on post #45.
Updates from build 2:




Things that were learned!

1.) The wiring harness for the M52tu in the DME box are slightly different for the non ECU connections. Will post up a wiring diagram with the differences and what to do to make it work.
2.) The 323i brake master cylinder with DSC has a smaller bore than the 325i with DSC. The brakes required an excessive amount of pedal travel to fill the calipers. The 325i master was then used.
3.) Used transmissions can be a gamble. Be careful of who you buy them from.
4.) The camber arm on the driver's side is not terribly easy to service with the M3 diff carrier in the wagon. Would have been so much easier to do while the subframe was on the ground.
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Old 01-11-2016, 01:15 PM   #2
YBimmer
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Very cool! Can't wait to see it with the exterior enhancements.
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Old 01-11-2016, 02:38 PM   #3
Ojai330i
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Insane work. It has to be fun to drive.
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Old 01-23-2016, 09:52 PM   #4
MichaelStar
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Awesome!
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Old 01-23-2016, 11:04 PM   #5
Spannerhead
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Stunning work! Can't wait to it with the new wheel and M-Tech II duds. Well done!
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Old 01-23-2016, 11:10 PM   #6
Mflara20
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Great sleeper.

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Old 01-24-2016, 02:56 PM   #7
modjo
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Does it work proper without any flashing lights in panel?
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Old 01-24-2016, 04:28 PM   #8
95///M3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by modjo View Post
Does it work proper without any flashing lights in panel?
Everything works. Traction control, abs, warm up lights, fully calibrated speedo for smaller tires/wheels. There are no lights on in the cluster!

Last edited by 95///M3; 01-25-2016 at 08:27 AM.
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Old 01-24-2016, 05:21 PM   #9
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This is just plain awesome!
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Old 01-24-2016, 05:31 PM   #10
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Superb, nicely done.
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Old 01-26-2016, 04:38 AM   #11
speedfreaks
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that's awesome!
wolf in sheep's clothing..

btw, is that any possible to swap just only both the engine and the transmission into an e46?
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Old 01-26-2016, 08:03 AM   #12
95///M3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speedfreaks View Post
that's awesome!
wolf in sheep's clothing..

btw, is that any possible to swap just only both the engine and the transmission into an e46?
Yes, but then you will need a shorter driveshaft. Why you wouldn't want the LSD from the M3 is beyond me, unless you already have one.
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Old 01-26-2016, 08:54 AM   #13
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beautifully done, very clean cut
I'd source M3 front seats / black carpet / dash just because... though beige is beautiful, it must be maintained
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Old 01-26-2016, 09:34 AM   #14
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Love it, well done. But how about the angel eyes?
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Old 01-26-2016, 11:01 AM   #15
joeybananaz18
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Great looking wagon. Could I ask what the swap roughly cost you?
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Old 01-26-2016, 11:41 AM   #16
lamsv
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Must. Resist. Swapping. S54.

Awesome, AWESOME touring! Thank you for posting the parts/methods you used to complete the swap. Not everybody shares this information. Kudos!
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Old 01-26-2016, 01:00 PM   #17
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Sub'd
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Old 01-26-2016, 02:00 PM   #18
e46_Brandon
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You should totally drive up to Glen Cove NY for Bimmerstock next this summer lol, this would be bad ass


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Old 01-26-2016, 04:13 PM   #19
95///M3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joeybananaz18 View Post
Great looking wagon. Could I ask what the swap roughly cost you?
General cost breakdown:

Donor Car - $5,000 - plus sold quite a bit of it to reclaim costs
Engine prep - $700 - VanosFix overhaul, bearings, general tune up parts
Drivetrain - $500 for new flywheel, clutch, csb
Bushings - $400
Brakes - $100 machining costs and $200 for pads/rotors
Suspension - $sourced from M3
Electronics - $450 ECU setup and Tune from Kassel; $225 full cluster re-program from Kassel as well
Fluids - $150

Labor - Did it myself in 3 days. Expect to pay a lot if you are having someone else do it.
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Old 01-26-2016, 04:14 PM   #20
95///M3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by e46_Brandon View Post
You should totally drive up to Glen Cove NY for Bimmerstock next this summer lol, this would be bad ass


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That's not going to exactly happen in this vehicle. Car was rolled 2 weeks ago. Looking for a white or gray chassis to swap everything over to; then, I'll be there!
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