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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 01-01-2013, 11:31 AM   #21
FastHackem
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OP-

just wondering what type of air filter you use? K&N, Fram, OEM...?

It seems like the K&N (and similar ones) let more dirt into the engine and cause dirtier oil.
K&N but I'm switching back to OEM after reading dozens of threads indicating they do nothing good for our motors.
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Old 01-01-2013, 03:41 PM   #22
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K&N but I'm switching back to OEM after reading dozens of threads indicating they do nothing good for our motors.
I would go for AFE and it looks best IMO
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Old 01-01-2013, 04:22 PM   #23
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Stick with the OEM filter setup with OEM filters from the dealer...
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Old 01-02-2013, 12:05 AM   #24
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K&N but I'm switching back to OEM after reading dozens of threads indicating they do nothing good for our motors.
Yeah, that's what I finally figured out. K & N doesn't bother to even put a disclaimer or warning on their filters - "This product WILL let more DIRT into your engine and give you 3 extra horsepower at WOT (big deal!)".

So what were your symptoms/reasons for doing your Vanos seals? (Nice write up, BTW)
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Old 01-02-2013, 12:35 AM   #25
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So what were your symptoms/reasons for doing your Vanos seals?
Everything you need to know is here:

http://www.beisansystems.com/
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Old 01-02-2013, 12:54 AM   #26
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I just cut a hole on the buttom of OEM air box for same result as these aftermarket CAIs
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Old 01-02-2013, 09:17 AM   #27
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I just cut a hole on the buttom of OEM air box for same result as these aftermarket CAIs
Probably faster
With a deeper more powerful broad ranged torque curve
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:17 PM   #28
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I just cut a hole on the buttom of OEM air box for same result as these aftermarket CAIs
Oh Lord. People still do this? I did it 10 years ago on my Cadillac SLS, LOL.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:19 PM   #29
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So what were your symptoms/reasons for doing your Vanos seals?
Just did them while I was in there, cheap insurance. I didn't have any noticable symptoms. I had an valve cover oil leak by the vanos and exhaust heat shield.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:21 PM   #30
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I did it 10 years ago on my Cadillac SLS, LOL.
Just think, 10 years ago your e46 was new.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:26 PM   #31
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Just think, 10 years ago your e46 was new.
I wish it still was. Or at least close to it. My E46 has had a rough life starting out as a lease car. I don't think she has ever had a better owner than myself. I plan to restore her back to, at least, a condition to be proud of then sell. Lets hope the auto trans holds out until then, LOL.
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Old 01-02-2013, 03:22 PM   #32
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I don't think she has ever had a better owner than myself. .
If you're on this board, I bet you're the best!

Pleasure for me to recall when mine was brand new in the delivery center in Munich and I first rolled her out onto the Autobahn. This after waiting five months from the time I placed the order at the dealer in New Jersey.
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Old 01-02-2013, 03:37 PM   #33
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Pleasure for me to recall when mine was brand new in the delivery center in Munich and I first rolled her out onto the Autobahn.
So much for the break in period huh?
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Old 01-02-2013, 04:18 PM   #34
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So much for the break in period huh?
Good thought, but no. Broke it in completely according to the manual. Limited the top speed to 100 mph for the first 1250 miles.
Car now at 97K miles and burns virtually no oil between 8000 mile changes.


BTW, MGG is the best color ever for an e46! Check out my pics.
Wish you had a pic of yours posted.

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Old 01-02-2013, 04:21 PM   #35
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I just cut a hole on the buttom of OEM air box for same result as these aftermarket CAIs
Brilliant. You turned it into a HAI. The factory original was a perfectly good CAI.
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Old 01-02-2013, 10:34 PM   #36
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Good thought, but no. Broke it in completely according to the manual. Limited the top speed to 100 mph for the first 1250 miles.
Car now at 97K miles and burns virtually no oil between 8000 mile changes.


BTW, MGG is the best color ever for an e46! Check out my pics.
Wish you had a pic of yours posted.
The temptation on the Autobahn mustve been a hard battle.. where I live an excessive speed offense is now an insta-tow and a 7 day impound first offence.

I posted some pics in the Gray-Green thread last week actually. Ive tried uploading to the garage but it always times out and fails..
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:29 PM   #37
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The temptation on the Autobahn mustve been a hard battle.. where I live an excessive speed offense is now an insta-tow and a 7 day impound first offence.
Ouch, insta-tow!

Actually wheeling out on the autobahn and clocking in a legal 100 mph for a full 30 minutes at a time was mind-blowing. Imagine cruising at that speed and police pull up along side and then flooring it out ahead. No worries!

Here is the piece I wrote after I returned to the states.
Skip reading if you've seen my post before on this:


Why BMW?? I took European Delivery of my 2004 Metallic Grey-Green BMW 330Ci coupe with sport suspension and bi-xenon headlights on April 1. From time to time someone will compare the acceleration of a Neon, or G35 or whatever to a 3 series for 0-60, and I now can fully appreciate why this is the furthest thing that we should use to evaluate the wisdom of a 3 series purchase. Especially when driving this car for 1350 miles in the native environment where the Germans have designed this car to thrive! What follows is my experience.
By the way, every third car in Germany seems to be a BMW, the vast majority being the small 3 series with the smaller motor. So I was more or less in the upper echelon with my humble 330. Among all I saw, only one other car in two weeks that had my color paint, despite the fact that it is gorgeous. I can't fully explain it, but when I would leave my car parked on the street a huge percentage of passersby would look backward over their shoulders intently at my car while discussing it between themselves. One woman hotel owner complimented me three separate times on my beautiful car.
I hadn't driven a BMW since 1975, so it might have been viewed as a leap of faith that I made this commitment, but I had the faith of hundreds of car magazine reviews to know that I could not be wrong. We landed in Munich via Lufthansa and took the S-Bahn and then the U-Bahn to the delivery center fully jet-lagged. We ate the complimentary lunch at the BMW Bistro and then walked into the immaculate garage to see the built-just-for-me dream car sitting in splendor! I loaded the luggage, set up my portable Garmin GPS navigator on the dash and pulled out ready to head up to a hotel in Ingolstadt for the night. Within 250 feet I couldn't wait; I pulled over into the parking lot and jumped out to walk around my car again to explore and appreciate. What did I immediately notice? Wow! Luck of the draw I got a full set of Michelin Pilot Sports, the most sought after tire for this car. I jumped around again with delight.
OK, now for the best part. My Garmin GPS took us shortly to the Autobahn for the hour ride to Ingolstadt. Remember, break-in limits are 100mph or 4500 rpm for the first 1250 miles. To get my bearings I let the car warm up well at US highway speeds for a while. (Pulled into a rest stop and looked at the engine and trunk and walked around the car again.) Now up to 100 smoothly for the true transformation of a driving experience. This is living!
You know how in the US at highway speeds with the cruise control set your mind can wander? You drift into trying to remember if you forgot something on your shopping list or if you missed any deductions on your tax return or get bored with the scenery because it's passing too slowly? NOT here! At one hundred the BMW hums magnificently: maybe even talks to you. I love that six-speed! In overdrive we're turning a comfortable 3500 rpm. No need to sweat the break-in limits. (Actually my GPS is accurate to a tenth of a mph using the 24 US government satellites. 100 indicated is actually 97.1 mph, or conversely a real 100 is about 103 indicated.)
So, both hands on the steering wheel at 10 and 2 and legally eating up the scenery at a beautiful pace. Even at that, groups of two or three Audi's or Mercedes will fly by from time to time at 120-130 my best guess. Wish the car was broken in so I could tag on, but I'm not forgetting that one hundred for 30 minutes at a time is the realization of a long time dream for me. Here the car seems like a creature running free. Almost a hypnotic experience with engine and suspension working superbly. Driving here requires my full attention all the time and it feels like the next level up in life. This is what the BMW was born to do.
From time to time I'll think that these two weeks will be the only two that this car will have this freedom. In the US for years I'll look at this car and remember that once it ran with the big boys.

I would reset the car computer at the Autobahn rest stops to see what the MPG would be after my sessions of 100 mph cruising. From start to the next full stop it was a pretty consistent 22.5 mpg.
Careful if you decide to go get ED in April! I saw rain, snow and had it HAIL on my new car. It makes a good story now, but for a while there I was in fear of the hail getting too large and doing damage to my one week old prize.
Gas in Europe is always dear, but the dollar has sunk 30% in the last few months. Imagine my 16.6 gallon tank. With a fill-up required, you're typically going to need about 15 gallons. That my friend will add close to an $80 charge to your credit card! Think twice about running to the store for another six pack.
German law requires all cars to carry a first aid kit and an emergency triangle in case of breakdowns. So BMW donates this to the cause, but won't guarantee that these items will stay with the shipped car. So if you want them on your car back in the US, you must remove them and carry them back yourself. So I stuffed the kit into my carry-on luggage and had the airport security confiscate my $.75 surgical scissors designed to cut clothes off of lacerated accident victims! I can now bandage you, but only over your clothes!
Not in a downpour, but in a light drizzle, this amazing car is not fazed at all at 100 mph. (The rain sensing intermittent windshield wipers are also amazing, knowing when to turn the wipers off and on so you don't have to keep jiggling with the controls. All the numerous automatic electronics on this car truly come into their own on the Autobahn.) I was surprised because I thought I would never have traveled at that speed except on dry pavement, but everything felt as solid as on dry. It is painful after the first rain to realize that your new pristine car is no longer clean with the mud and dirt thrown up from the road dried to a haze. Bummer. But the real surprise here is that after pulling off the Autobahn one day and stopping at a rest stop, I looked back at the car and was shocked to see that the rain at 100 mph had cleaned the car almost as good as a car wash on all forward facing surfaces! Who knew?

Beware of the Autobahn on the drive from Stuttgart back to Munich. This was the only stretch of road that I drove on after I had gone past the break-in mileage of 1250 and I discovered that most all of this had a 72 mph speed limit. There was one long straight stretch where there were few cars and no speed limits. So I can lay claim to once touching an honest 124 according to the max speed indicator on my GPS. But the real sweet memories are of just locking in on 100 for mile after sweet kilometer and living like the way they do in Germany.
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Old 01-03-2013, 08:10 AM   #38
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Oh Lord. People still do this? I did it 10 years ago on my Cadillac SLS, LOL.
The Alpina airbox sorta comes like that from the factory

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Old 01-03-2013, 08:20 AM   #39
FastHackem
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The Alpina airbox sorta comes like that from the factory.
IDK, to me that looks like a proper setup with a induction tube routed to a lower area of the body away from heat sources , like where the brake cooling ducts are. A cutout on the bottom of our air box would just be sucking in stale hot air in the engine compartment.
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Old 01-03-2013, 09:04 PM   #40
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Ouch, insta-tow!

Here is the piece I wrote after I returned to the states.
Skip reading if you've seen my post before on this:
Great story! Must've been murder waiting for that freighter to come in! I still vividly remember my first test drive in my 2002 330Ci.. because it was only a few weeks ago! Luckily the dealer was near the highway in Richmond BC, but I dont think the salesman was expecting to thumb my nose at the speed limit and the look on his face when I gave it some juice was priceless (that and the squealing of my gf in the back seat... she was sceptical no more!) Its my 4th BMW and by far my favorite of the lot. Also the newest.
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