If someone were to make a mixtape (yes, I’m old) with BMW’s greatest hits from the 2000s, it would probably be embodied by this car. What is it? It started out in life as an M3 E46 before the 3.2-liter, inline-six “S54” engine was removed to make room for a V10. Yes, this car is rocking a naturally aspirated 5.0-liter “S85” that was only used in the M5 E60 Sedan and the M5 E61 Touring.
The beefy ten-cylinder engine originally worked with the much-criticized SMG but not in this tricked-out M3 since the car uses a dual-clutch automatic transmission taken from an M3 E92. It gets even better as the V10 has been remapped and it now pushes out somewhere in the region of 520 horsepower instead of the stock 500-hp output. The engine bay looks impressively clean, so much so you’d be tempted to believe that’s how it came from the factory. However, the largest engine installed by BMW in the M3 E46 was “only” a V8 for the ultra-rare GTR.
Some of the bits and bobs have been relocated to the rear for better weight distribution, and to offset the added bulk of that big V10, it has some carbon fiber body panels. The owner is thinking about replacing the OEM wheels shod in 265/35 ZR18 tires with a lighter Apex set, while the stopping power is provided by AP Racing brakes.
Specs aside, the engine sounds nothing short of amazing and the car picks up speed without breaking a sweat. Nürburgring resident Misha Charoudin had the opportunity to drive the heavily modified M3 and discover how the V10 works with the DCT in a car that wasn’t originally supposed to have either. Revving up to 8,000 rpm and flying past one car after another must’ve been a real hoot.
Despite having a big and bulky V10 under the hood, Misha says the car doesn’t feel front-heavy at all, so handling hasn’t been negatively impacted following the engine transplant. He has driven a wide variety of modified cars over the years and this ten-cylinder M3 E46 has rocketed to the top of his list of favorites.
Source: Misha Caroudin / YouTube