How to turn a BMW E36 into a beginner’s track car

Interesting | November 21st, 2012 by 1
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The folks at Hooniverse are taking on an interesting challenge: transforming a BMW E36 into a beginner’s track car. The model of choice is a …

The folks at Hooniverse are taking on an interesting challenge: transforming a BMW E36 into a beginner’s track car. The model of choice is a 1996 E36 328iS which was purchased from eBay Motors. Here is an excerpt from their article:

“We’ll go over repairing our crappy E36, doing routine maintenance, and finally outfitting it for track duty. This vehicle will be designed for a novice driver, and will be fully street legal, with zero modifications required to switch from track and the street duty. Yes, we could have done a Porsche 911 GT3, but where’s the fun in that?

The seller of this 1996 BMW 328iS, currently the least expensive 6-cylinder manual transmission-equipped E36 on eBay, claims that there are two engine codes, P1189 and P0170. That’s a good thing too, as these codes are likely to keep other buyers away and keep the price lower. Thankfully, the solution to these codes is a rather simple one: it’s probably an oil separator valve or one of the two crankcase vent hoses.

How to turn a BMW E36 into a beginners track car

The other issue the seller mentions is “lightweight flywheel allows some rattle after warmed up”. I don’t know what that means, and not having the ability to troubleshoot I would assume the worst case scenario and just replace the flywheel and the clutch. The combination of Sachs Clutch and a Fidanza aluminum flywheel should take care of that. While it’s not the cheapest set available, both brand names have a very good reputation.

While the transmission is out, it may be a good idea to upgrade the shifter. There are a million short-shifts kits out there, but from my experience the one that works best is the factory one. The OEM Z3 shifter and a new bushing make for shorter throws, and at just over $100, are the shifter band-for-the-buck winners. While there you might as well change the transmission fluid for some fresh RedLine MTL. Check for leaks from the master and slave brake cylinders, and replace as needed.”

Have a look how the E36 project turned out.

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