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E46 Engine Swaps
Replacing your motor? From direct replacements to more exoctic engines, if it's going under the hood of an E46 3 Series this is the forum to discuss it.

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Old 02-21-2017, 11:02 AM   #1
VladBelsky
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My Ride: E46 roadster/E85 Z4
Year: 2003
Model: 3.0i
Transmission: 6-speed
S52 Swap (Yes, you read that right) into E46 Sedan

The car started life as a 325i. Rather than swap it to an M54B30, I decided to go a less traditional route.

"S52? Why not an S54?" An S54 would be much more expensive for me to buy and rebuild completely. I also want something lower-maintenance than an S54. This is actually going to be a bored out cast iron block M52 that I picked up on craigslist, with S52 rotating assembly and M54B30 intake cam (at first, anyway), and an M50 intake manifold.



"How are you going to run a single-VANOS engine in your E46?"
Simple, I converted the car from MS45.1 to MS43, and will run the car on a modified Alpina B3S tune.

The E46 Alpina B3S uses a modified version of the S52B32 US-market engine, and has a displacement of 3.4 liters. I'm going to have something similar but 3.2 liters. E46 Alpinas were never sold in the US, so I will have something strange and different.



Plans for the engine build:
ARP rod bolts
ARP head studs
ARP main studs
MLS head gasket

Stay tuned for more photos and updates!
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Last edited by VladBelsky; 04-02-2017 at 11:36 PM.
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Old 02-27-2017, 04:20 PM   #2
matt270avian
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Sounds ambitious. I have some 3.0 motor parts you may be interested in (intake cam, intake manifold, etc...).
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Old 02-27-2017, 09:54 PM   #3
VladBelsky
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matt270avian View Post
Sounds ambitious. I have some 3.0 motor parts you may be interested in (intake cam, intake manifold, etc...).
I already have a 330i intake cam I will be using, until I get either S50 or Sunbelt cams. My current setup so the car can drive around in the meantime is an M54B25 with 330i intake manifold, MAF, airbox, etc, running on MS43; on a 330i tune with some injection and VANOS values adjusted to 325i ones.
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Old 03-09-2017, 07:31 PM   #4
Broo102
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Really like your post on deleting the CCV on a M54 I know it's 3 years later but
I have an 02 325i. I had a question: where does the vent tube go to? It looks like in thepic that it routes to the CCV Valve.
I know its a stupid ques., but I didnt understand that part of your delete solution.
Thanks Bru
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Old 09-12-2017, 01:33 PM   #5
iamduda
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Ohhhh i got TONS of questions for you.. I am looking to swap my M52 Turbo into my E46. The part that i am concerned the most is the wiring. Did you use your M52 engine harness? Did you have to modify it? How did you plug it into the 46 chassis harness.

You are a savior to me right now lol!
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Old 10-15-2017, 03:27 PM   #6
Gbro
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Very interested in this, how is it coming along? Any updates?
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Old 02-27-2018, 07:20 PM   #7
GG///M3
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Blippp any updates?


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Old 07-28-2018, 09:54 PM   #8
VladBelsky
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Hey, guys. The build is still happening, but the engine is going into an E85 Z4 roadster.
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Old 07-07-2019, 02:49 AM   #9
chanman1029
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How are things going, about how much have you spent, and how much can you realistically expect someone to do this aswell?


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Old 09-14-2019, 06:15 PM   #10
Andy325is
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This is an interesting idea. Keep in mind however that this swap may not be legal depending where you live. In the US it isn't legal to install an engine from a previous model year, so this swap is best suited for a 1999 or 2000 E46 using an S52 from a 1999 M3 or Z3M (or 2000 Z3M). I believe there was more to the Alpina B3S engine that allowed it to function properly in the E46 including the special intake and throttle.

Last edited by Andy325is; 09-17-2019 at 12:00 PM.
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Old 09-15-2019, 01:34 PM   #11
chanman1029
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy325is View Post
This is an interesting idea. Keep in mind however that this swap may not be legal depending where you live. In the US it isn't legal to install an engine from a previous model year, so this swap is best suited for a 1999 E46 using an S52 from a 1999 M3 or Z3M. I believe there was more to the Alpina B3S engine that allowed it to function properly in the E46 including the special intake and throttle.


So Iíve read this a few times too, hereís my question.

Sure it might be ďillegalĒ depending on the state, but if I dont have to do annual vehicle inspections, and I have no intentions of selling the vehicle, is there anything I really need to worry about? Does this rule/law still apply to people doing 2JZ/LS swaps?

The way I feel is, itís MY car, and I have the freedom to do whatever I want to MY car, including putting whatever engine in it that I choose.


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Old 09-17-2019, 12:12 PM   #12
Andy325is
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Originally Posted by chanman1029 View Post
So Iíve read this a few times too, hereís my question.

Sure it might be ďillegalĒ depending on the state, but if I dont have to do annual vehicle inspections, and I have no intentions of selling the vehicle, is there anything I really need to worry about? Does this rule/law still apply to people doing 2JZ/LS swaps?

The way I feel is, itís MY car, and I have the freedom to do whatever I want to MY car, including putting whatever engine in it that I choose.


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A lot of people share that sentiment, and Iím not saying to follow those rules if you donít want to, but I wanted to point it out in case some people arenít aware. The law is intended to help prevent people from installing engines that donít meet the emissions standards for that model year. Thatís why itís legal install newer engines into a car (assuming they are EPA compliant and match the vehicle class (e.g. light duty into light duty), but not older. The federal and state laws governing engine swaps are enforced through state inspections and emissions testing, so yeah you probably donít have anything to worry about if you donít have those where you live. Just because you can get away with doing something doesnít make it right though.
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Old 09-17-2019, 02:29 PM   #13
chanman1029
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Makes sense, lets be honest though, if any person is interested in something like this, they probably wonít feel morally wrong for do so.


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