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E46 Xi Forum
The E46 XI was produced from 01-05 in sedan and touring body styles. Powered by either a 2.5L inline 6 in the 325xi or a 3.0L inline 6 330xi. Discuss all thing about BMW AWD E46 'Xi' here.

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Old 07-05-2012, 05:28 PM   #1
Mitchez22256
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Transmission swap for manual

Hi everyone ,

Ok I blown my automatic transmission and now I want to offer more resistance to my 2005 330xi and I want to swap in manual , my car is in the garage waiting for me and the garage to find a manual transmission but we can't find one for now ..I know some of you will tell me to sell it and buy another car but I am there and there is no way back . So please help me , If you guys have links from a good web site ,or if some of you have good advice for me .. Can I get an 6 spd? , how can I make this really tough so an forced induction could go on
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Old 07-05-2012, 06:24 PM   #2
GotVANOS?
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The transfer case on an automatic is the same as on a manual. 6 speed xi's never were produced by the factory but you could get one from 330 ZHP and drop it in. If you look on realoem.com you can compare part numbers and see what you need to do a swap. 5speeds are much cheaper but you may want to do a differential swap because with your auto 3.46 gears RPMS will be high on the highway. = bad fuel economy.
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Quote:
5TFUUU, If one more person tells me to sell my car and buy an ///M Im going to light their family on fire and make them watch.
*****BUY MY 330XI AUTO TRANS AND PARTS. CHEAP!!!******
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Old 07-05-2012, 06:47 PM   #3
Kubica
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GotVANOS? View Post
The transfer case on an automatic is the same as on a manual. 6 speed xi's never were produced by the factory but you could get one from 330 ZHP and drop it in. If you look on realoem.com you can compare part numbers and see what you need to do a swap. 5speeds are much cheaper but you may want to do a differential swap because with your auto 3.46 gears RPMS will be high on the highway. = bad fuel economy.
^ignore everything this guy just said. It's all wrong.

Www.car-part.com is the site. Not sure if they have Canadian listings.

Yes a 6speed will bolt up to an '05 330xi automatic. Be sure to get the manual tranny coupling to the transfer case with the 6speed. Keep the 3.46 diffs and you will most likely have the fastest normally aspirated xi in Canada.
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Old 07-06-2012, 10:57 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GotVANOS? View Post
The transfer case on an automatic is the same as on a manual. 6 speed xi's never were produced by the factory but you could get one from 330 ZHP and drop it in. If you look on realoem.com you can compare part numbers and see what you need to do a swap. 5speeds are much cheaper but you may want to do a differential swap because with your auto 3.46 gears RPMS will be high on the highway. = bad fuel economy.
I read this...then I went and looked at my car again... Yup, still a factory 6 speed.
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:37 AM   #5
Pierce1
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Mine too. It's an 03.
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Old 07-06-2012, 07:24 PM   #6
Bobby330xi
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So, lets say I get bored of the Auto in my car.... What else is needed beside:
1) Manual Trans
2) Clutch Pedal Assembly, clutch master cylinder
3) Manual trans coupling

?
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Old 07-07-2012, 10:50 AM   #7
Kubica
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^ you can put a 5speed into an '02 using your TC. 6speed would need a post 3/03 TC.

Clutch, flywheel, shifter arm assembly, etc.
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Old 07-07-2012, 09:24 PM   #8
GotVANOS?
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Quote:
read this...then I went and looked at my car again... Yup, still a factory 6 speed
Im thinking 325's...

Educate me about this. 330xi 6 speeds. Im guessing post 03 cars?
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Quote:
5TFUUU, If one more person tells me to sell my car and buy an ///M Im going to light their family on fire and make them watch.
*****BUY MY 330XI AUTO TRANS AND PARTS. CHEAP!!!******

Last edited by GotVANOS?; 07-07-2012 at 09:46 PM.
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Old 07-08-2012, 08:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubica View Post
^ignore everything this guy just said. It's all wrong.

Www.car-part.com is the site. Not sure if they have Canadian listings.

Yes a 6speed will bolt up to an '05 330xi automatic. Be sure to get the manual tranny coupling to the transfer case with the 6speed. Keep the 3.46 diffs and you will most likely have the fastest normally aspirated xi in Canada.
Can't wait to run this setup myself, however i'm not sure that the coupling is the same transfer case side as they (xfer case) changed part number as well with the 03 facelift.
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Old 07-08-2012, 12:29 PM   #10
E RaK
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Can't you use the six speed out of an X3 as well?
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Old 07-08-2012, 02:06 PM   #11
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Wait, isn't there something with the car engine/trans management control to replace or update the flash RAM? I would think that Siemens (evil German scientists) programmed auto-trans inputs to the ECU where swapping in a manual may make for interesting program results?

Disclaimer; this is in question form for conversation purposes only. I am not stating a known fact. Seems strange no one has addressed it?
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Old 07-08-2012, 03:13 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GotVANOS? View Post
Im thinking 325's...

Educate me about this. 330xi 6 speeds. Im guessing post 03 cars?
March 2003 and newer. Like all the other 330s


Quote:
Originally Posted by White_Knuckles View Post
Wait, isn't there something with the car engine/trans management control to replace or update the flash RAM? I would think that Siemens (evil German scientists) programmed auto-trans inputs to the ECU where swapping in a manual may make for interesting program results?

Disclaimer; this is in question form for conversation purposes only. I am not stating a known fact. Seems strange no one has addressed it?
Clearing all the adaptations w/ INPA after removing the auto harness should do the trick.
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Old 09-26-2012, 01:37 AM   #13
RCase
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubica View Post
^ignore everything this guy just said. It's all wrong.

Www.car-part.com is the site. Not sure if they have Canadian listings.

Yes a 6speed will bolt up to an '05 330xi automatic. Be sure to get the manual tranny coupling to the transfer case with the 6speed. Keep the 3.46 diffs and you will most likely have the fastest normally aspirated xi in Canada.
Reviving this thread.

Can someone confirm what would be needed on an 04 Auto XI car to do a 6 speed swap?

A 6 speed from a ZHP / 330 car?
The transfer case / tranny coupling for a manual?
All of the normal tidbits for a manual swap?

I am curious as there have been multiple threads that state that a Manual 6 is a "no-go" for XI cars. I recently picked up a tremendous one owner xiT with a slushbox and if I am going to take the time to swap, I would rather spend the extra money and keep the rev's closer to my auto (.83 6th vs. .74 in my auto OD). The 5 speed is a dismal 1:1 which has to eat at fuel economy.

Having owned an E91 XI Manual - Certainly there is obvious curosity when I hear it is not possible. How would the N52 do fine with an Xi Manual and this not mate up fine to an E46 with an M54 ?

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Last edited by RCase; 09-26-2012 at 01:41 AM.
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Old 09-26-2012, 09:22 AM   #14
SamDoe1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RCase View Post
I am curious as there have been multiple threads that state that a Manual 6 is a "no-go" for XI cars. I recently picked up a tremendous one owner xiT with a slushbox and if I am going to take the time to swap, I would rather spend the extra money and keep the rev's closer to my auto (.83 6th vs. .74 in my auto OD). The 5 speed is a dismal 1:1 which has to eat at fuel economy.
Who told you and where are these threads saying a manual 6spd is a no go? It is definitely possible and doable although your performance will be quite sluggish in 6th with the smaller motor in your car.

You will need a 6spd from a 330xi, I don't think the normal one will fit. You'll also need the second revision of the TC if your car doesn't already have it (check part numbers). Lastly, you'll need the required plumbing and valving to install the manual but this is pretty obvious.
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Old 09-26-2012, 12:28 PM   #15
e46alfonso
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If you do a 5sp swap you will need to buy another TC (pre 02/2003), therefore it would make more sense to get the 6sp tranny as it would bolt right up.
In 6th gear at 70mph your revs will be at around 2800 which isn't bad for highway. Your car shouldn't struggle to maintain speed IMO. Hell, most cars these days rev at 1500-2000rpm at 70mph.
Your car with the 3.46 diffs will be as fast as a 330 auto.
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Old 09-26-2012, 03:03 PM   #16
Kubica
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RCase View Post
Reviving this thread.

Can someone confirm what would be needed on an 04 Auto XI car to do a 6 speed swap?
A manual tranny from an xi (2003.5+), and all the other parts to do the same swap on a RWD e46, but from an xi.


Quote:
Originally Posted by e46alfonso View Post
If you do a 5sp swap you will need to buy another TC (pre 02/2003), therefore it would make more sense to get the 6sp tranny as it would bolt right up.
Why wouldn't a 5speed from a 2005 325xi bolt up? It would work fine.

Last edited by Kubica; 09-26-2012 at 03:03 PM.
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Old 09-30-2012, 12:33 PM   #17
RCase
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Originally Posted by SamDoe1 View Post
Who told you and where are these threads saying a manual 6spd is a no go? It is definitely possible and doable although your performance will be quite sluggish in 6th with the smaller motor in your car.

You will need a 6spd from a 330xi, I don't think the normal one will fit. You'll also need the second revision of the TC if your car doesn't already have it (check part numbers). Lastly, you'll need the required plumbing and valving to install the manual but this is pretty obvious.

It was quoted in a thread on here (I have been searching exhaustively). It simply did not make sense - the car was offered with it - even if that post was for a non-facelift car - it definitely should still work.

I have an 04 so I assume the transfer case is the same.

Does anyone know if an E90 6-Speed XI setup will bolt up? I am not entirely sure if they are the same - I will search.

Can anyone comment on the programming differences? Does the car start and run prior to a reprogram, or is it required for the car to even fire?

Thanks folks!
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Old 09-30-2012, 12:33 PM   #18
RCase
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Thanks for the info Kubica - I will start the search for a 6 sped from an XI
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Old 09-30-2012, 06:09 PM   #19
SamDoe1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RCase View Post
It was quoted in a thread on here (I have been searching exhaustively). It simply did not make sense - the car was offered with it - even if that post was for a non-facelift car - it definitely should still work.

I have an 04 so I assume the transfer case is the same.

Does anyone know if an E90 6-Speed XI setup will bolt up? I am not entirely sure if they are the same - I will search.

Can anyone comment on the programming differences? Does the car start and run prior to a reprogram, or is it required for the car to even fire?

Thanks folks!
E90 is a different engine and AWD system entirely, won't work. Not sure on the programming differences, I'd imagine the car would start but throw all kinds of codes. Also, not sure on what the cluster differences would bring about too.
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