As the weather is turning for the better in Calgary, we were inspired to start moving on getting this BMW Turbo M3 going. So we accomplished a lot this week, from a few parts installs to fabrication, this project is starting to look like a car again.
There is lots of fabrication involved in a custom build like this, so we decided to tackle one thing at a time:
We started by mounting the intercooler. This was easier than we expected, as we were able to use the existing metal bumper supports. We welded tabs on the supports, then simply bolted the intercooler to the tabs.
Next with the intercooler piping, which involved figuring out the precise bends to align the aluminum piping from the intercooler to the turbo, and from the intercooler to the intake manifold. This is done by a mockup of where the piping will be, then TIG welding the piping to spec.
The next step was to fabricate custom mounts to mount the radiator to the chassis. So we fabricated 4 tabs, 2 at the top and 2 at the bottom to hold the Mishimoto radiator in place. Also you can see in the last picture the relocated coolant expansion tank. We had to re-locate the coolant expansion tank due to the top mount turbo. So we modified a Moroso universal expansion tank to fit behind the radiator.
Stay tuned. The last piece to fabricate is the exhaust!
This particular BMW M3 has always been on the line of being a street car and a track car. This car spent a of time at the track however it also has been enjoyed on the street, or on highway mountain cruises. Due to this dual purpose nature we had left the car with a stripped rear and bolt in half cage, but with the front interior still in tact.
We wanted to change up the style this year, lighten the car, and make it more purposeful on the track. So we decided to do a full interior stripping of the car. With all the interior pices stripped out, the next strep is to chip off the sound deadening, and paint the interior.
Well, we managed to get the Infiniti G35 LS Swap fired up, ensured everything was comfortable inside the new chassis, and finally got this beast out onto the pavement. We are tuning this car with HP Tuners, a very popular tuning platform for the GM ECU’s. After doing a few pulls and cleaning up our tune, the Infiniti was running like a champ. While constantly viewing the engine parameters, it was time to break in all the mechanical components. The engine compression rings were seated by driving under various loads and rpm ranges. Heavy engine braking is ideal for this, along with gradually increasing acceleration load. After about an hour we headed back to the shop to give everything a thorough once over.
Once we had the car in the air, we checked over all mounting hardware, suspension supports and braces, and ensured no fluid leaks were present. We made sure that the levels were proper after the vehicle’s systems had burped themselves, and that everything was functioning as intended. We did a fresh oil change at this point, and saved a litre of the drained oil to be tested at a later date. After everything was buttoned up, it was back to putting more miles on the car.
After accumulating just over 1000 road driven kilometres on the car, we had no major issues and everything seemed to be settling into the chassis quite nicely. We haven’t fully tuned for power at this time, mainly because we were waiting on the arrival of a smaller supercharger pulley, which will generate significantly more boost. Sometime after the installation we will be starting to tune for power and see what our boosted V8 will produce to the tires.