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Ares: 1995 BMW 540i/6spd

4779 Views 29 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  JetstraxZonal
Hey guys, this is my current project/daily driver. A 1995 BMW E34 540i/6speed manual. Found on craigslists non-running. My first experience with BMW's and admittedly a gamble not knowing what was wrong or why it would crank but not fire.

Made a deal and towed it back home, roughly 90 miles away.

I saw that someone put a water pump on it, but was missing the fan & clutch. Also the fan started digging into the fins of the radiator. I'm beginning to get a clearer picture of what happened. Since the harmonic dampener needs to get removed to put a water pump on this engine, and the dampener has he reluctor teeth for the crank sensor I saw that someone installed the dampener clocked incorrectly thus the engine timing and fuel was way out in no mans land.

Realigned the dampener and it fired right up. But sounded like hell, exhaust leaks, water leaks, oil leaks, valve train clatter and a slight miss at idle.

I pulled the intake; replaced the injectors, replaced plugs & coils. Dropped the oil pan and found loose oil pump bolts in the pan. Torqued the oil pump hardware and set chain tension. Painted the intake. Found missing exhaust collector hardware, installed new hardware. Replaced the radiator and added electric fans.

After a few more appearance mods I took it on it's first test drive....over the nearest mountain.

The test drive revealed a pair of broke engine mounts. Engine and trans mounts replaced with a set of RevShift Poly 95A mounts.

The v8 was really asking for a loud exhaust, so I pieced one together. Dual 2.25", H-pipe, Magnaflow glasspacks as resonators into a Flowmaster Super 10. Dumped before the differential.

I had an old junk BMW come into the shop, purchased by the shop for repair and resale. It had with a set of 16" chrome wheels so I swapped them over. The 18" M wheels that came with the car will need a ton of love (rechrome or powder coat) before they can be run.

Also decided to do something really different, made my own grill for the car. Most people don't like it, but I do..and that's what matters.

Sounds of the exhaust:

For the computer system I am running an Ostrich 2.0 chip emulator into the OE Bosch Motronic 3.3.1, the emulator is loaded with a performance tune.

I have also been working with a piggyback MAFT-Pro in order to get away from the MAF sensor and go over to a Speed Density type set up that also uses wideband AFR tracking for fuel adjustments. This is still a work in progress.

Currently as of this afternoon: After over a year of daily driving the clutch started to slip, ever since I got the car it always grabbed high. So I decided to pull the drive train. Do away with the dual mass flywheel in favor of a lightweight aluminum piece and use a 6 puck sprung disc. I am debating installing headers now too.

I will also degree in the cams and get away from OE specs, barely.

Originally the M60 cams are 246/242 adv duration, 108 lobe center, 109 ICL. Since aftermarket cams cost more the car is worth I decided to play with timing a bit. I'll advance the intake cams 2 degrees and tighten the LSA to 106 degrees.

For being such a small displacement 4.0L, that sure is a large engine assembly. But it's also a lot of fun to drive.

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Badass restoration, what happened to the m5 wheels? Not feeling the grill but do what you like.
Badass restoration, what happened to the m5 wheels? Not feeling the grill but do what you like.
Thank you. The chrome is extremely pitted. I plan on doing a sand blast & powder coat some day. But for now they are a coffee table in my living room.

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Looking good.
Sweet car.
21 years of fluid leaks, heat cycles, road grime and weather have not been kind to this engine bay. Currently degreasing, stripping, prepping and painting:

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Decided to start timing the cams:

Mounted a degree wheel to the crank pulley, using a pushrod from my old small block chevy in the spark plug hole and a dial indicator to find true TDC of that cylinder.

Spun the engine over a couple times, modifying my TDC mark location and then moved the dial indicator over to an intake lifter, spun engine and noted where cam timing events landed. Did the same for exhaust.

I knew that cam timing event's are measured at .1mm / .004" lift. For some reason I then read and marked the event's at .002" lift. But it was enough to see that cam timing was pretty close to OE, actually even a couple degrees retard.

I found on my engine:
(@.002" lift)
for a 111°ICL / 110°LSA

Pretty close to what online sources say are OE cam timing event's of:
(@.004" lift)
for a 109°ICL / 108°LSA

My plan is to dial in cam timing of:
(@.004" lift)
for a 106°ICL / 106°LSA

From my digging, calcs and even dyno sims the difference isn't drastic. Only a couple more ft-lb of torque and a couple more peak HP. But since the engine is out and it's a free mod...Why not.
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Sweet project! Nice to see something different.
Thanks guys, appreciate the positive feedback.

More stuffs. EBay header fail:

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The guy in Korea that made those must have been blind.
Nice project!
I decided to make the headers work, here's DEI titanium heat wrap on the stainless headers.

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Nice. Did these come with a 6 speed from the factory in 95? I think the grill looks good.
Nice. Did these come with a 6 speed from the factory in 95? I think the grill looks good.
Thank you. Yes they did, the Getrag420g trans
Long term project, long after the car is back together and driving. Once the MAFT-Pro is dialed in and the Bosch Motronic is running on Speed Density with wideband AFR tracking.

Picked up an N62 BMW V8 DIVA variable length runner intake manifold. With a few mods it'll bolt down to my existing V8. I would then need to make my own motor controller, I'm thinking a frequency to analog voltage converter tied into either a fuel injector or a ignition coil coupled to an electronic/fly-by-wire throttlebody controller so that the runner length is adjusted with RPM.

After the controller is functional I would them mount the intake backwards on the engine, use a 3.5" aluminum U-bend to mount my 80mm universal throttlebody located above the intake manifold and then use my old carburetor scoop modified for the throttlebody.

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The intake manifold idea is being put on the back burner. Perhaps picked up again once the engine is back in.

The lightweight flywheel arrived, still awaiting the stageII kevlar clutch

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Installed flywheel and clutch: The clutch kit was suppose to be sprung hub, a solid hub arrived. After waiting on hold with the parts supplier for over an hour I gave up and just installed it as is. A bit concerned to see how the car reacts to the lightweight flywheel and unsprung kevlar full face clutch disc, it will take some driving adjustments for might even be the push I need to get rid of the 2.91:1 rear gears for a 3.6x:1 and then also keep looking to shave weight on the car...ya know, to reduce the off the line shaking as the clutch grabs.

Weighed the OE flywheel & hardware. If i were smart I would have grabbed the weight with the new clutch disc & PP on the new flywheel vs the old...I'm not that smart.

Old Flywheel:

vs the 17.37lb of the new one.

I am also anticipating the gearbox lash rattle/clatter at idle in neutral with the clutch out. Which is primarily what the sprung hub is supposed to reduce. The solid drivetrain combined with the fact I increased valve overlap with cam timing making for a "less smooth" idle I'm hoping the gearbox doesn't make all kinds of embarrassingly loud least nothing audible over the loud exhaust.

I'll be using UUC MotorWerks suggested blend of Redline 75W140NS and D4 ATF to reduce rattle:

transmission fluids recommended to stop gearbox rattle

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