BR Racing Blog



There’s an ongoing evolution in the upgrades of cars…..for the most part, there is less and less “modding” going on, as the cars now come from the manufacturer either well equipped, or the manufacturer offers performance upgrades / options, at the time of order.

This has gone so far as to now produce what was unthinkable even 10 years ago…..options like “coil-overs” and custom exhausts, track features, being made, supported, warranted by the manufacturers themselves.  But, where the manufacturer doesn’t fill in the holes, or if a customer buys a car, and now wants to add those features…that’s where project cars come in.

James’ MINI is just such a case in point.  The MINI has evolved a tremendous amount from the first new generation (2002 – 2006)…and has gained in many areas (including weight and girth).  The sporty feel is still there, but the edges have been rounded, smoothed, made subtle…and we’re not just talking the design.  The good news is that they have continued to add power / HP to the car, to continue to make it one quick, snappy, driving machine.  But, can we get more?  You bet!

James’ wanted to get more…in every area…..engine, exhaust, suspension, brakes, looks, handling….check off all the boxes.  So, if the cars are indeed so well equipped, what can be done?


The base car here is at the top of the food chain for MINI….not only is it a MINI Cooper S…but a JCW (John Cooper Works) version….which means it has all the factory go fast parts for the engine are already installed….turbo boost enhanced, intake, exhaust manifold upgraded, timing…all the right steps.  But, we wanted to take it just a little farther, to the boundaries of what the engine was designed to do.  Enter the “tune” from NM Engineering.  Simple, effective, cheap, easy to install, and it just perks up the engine just a little more.


Here James tossed and turned….do we go full hard core, and do “coil-overs”, but lose the current EDC, or stay within the boundaries, and keep the EDC but tweak it?  This is traditionally the hard question on suspension…do we want ultimate handling, or do we want a car that will serve dual duties (daily driver / commuter vs mountain driving / aggressive driving, even track? ) To date, there is no perfect solution.  The nice part of having the EDC dual mode shock settings ruled the day, and we went w sport springs (NM Engineering) more aggressive (but not too stiff), adjustable rear sway bar (NM Engineering), front strut tower brace, and rear adjustable lower control arms to allow us to get the alignment settings we wanted all around (NM Engineering), and provide some safety value as well (the stock arms can fold, snap, under hard driving or autocross type activity).

Notice that MINI is paying attention.  The early model MINI’s had problems if you upgraded the suspension, with the front upper strut tower “hat” mushrooming.  The new MINI, like James’s here, you can see that they upgraded the size, breadth, width, and thickness of the front upper strut mount.


The one thing almost every car can use….is a better exhaust.  Not better in terms of performance, as almost all exhausts these days flows well. But better in terms of sound. Normally, we have to turn to the aftermarket to find the solution.  But not now, again, as the times have changed, manufacturers have gotten into the game, and are producing some good options.   Such is the case w MINI….they now offer a “valvetronic” exhaust, w remote.  Great fit, choice of sound level (with the valvetronic remote control), comes with a warranty….its amazing.  The exhaust even works w the ECU (ECU has to be coded for the upgrade, which we did), to enhance the performance, and to work w the automatic mode of the valvetronic as well.  The other suprising element about the exhaust was the price….you would think an OEM sport exhaust would be more expensive than the aftermarket alternatives, but not so.


An area where there is still more choice, and more options, and better looking options is wheels.  The manufacturers are coming along in this area too, but for the most part, the aftermarket still produces the best looking, best performing, best fitting wheels for any car.  Our first choice for MINI’s is NM Engineering.  Their wheels fit perfect, look great (several styles to choose from), are strong and light, and come in several color options.  If we’re going to put better wheels on the car, then we need new tires.  The answer here is simple…you get Michelin tires (either the go to version, the “Super Sport”, or the new kid on the block, the “Pilot 4S”.  They didn’t make the new tire in the size we needed, so we went w the Super Sports.


For the most part, we’re never satisfied with stock brakes.  However, James’s car is a JCW version, and MINI makes a completely different brake solution for the JCW than the rest of the MINI lineup.  These brakes are great…bigger, more pistons, more pad surface area, better vented rotors, and they work.  So no upgrade needed here, just a set of stainless steel braided brake lines, and a brake fluid flush / upgrade.


The one piece that almost all cars need is a change to the alignment settings.  This is guaranteed if you have upgraded the suspension, changed the ride height.  We’re not sure why manufacturers are producing or shipping cars w such poor alignments, if its just safety sakes (to produce more understeer to make them safer to drive at the limit), or some other reason.  But, this MINI could use it to further dial in the handling and responsiveness.

The final product is just crazy good…..we love the new transmission (and just wait for the next version from MINI…Wow), love the response, the ride is dual purpose perfect, the sound intoxicating, and the smiles HUGE.

Oil – It’s all the same isn’t it?

Engine oil – when its synthetic…its all the same isn’t it?

For the longest time…BRracing prided itself on offering the same engine oil that the dealership offered for their customers.  We carried the same oil as the BMW dealership for BMWs, the same oil as the MINI dealership for MINI’s, the same oil as the dealership for Audi’s…you get the idea.

Then, we noticed that the local Audi dealership offered Pennzoil for their Audi customers….cause the local dealership is owned by the Penske Group.  We talked to the local dealership, and asked if they had done a comparison of the Pennzoil to the Mobil1 5w40 normally used in the Audi’s…..NOPE.  They just wanted to use the core, same fluids that the Penske Group used.

Next, we would have lots of customers with BMWs and MINIs…and we would see high rates of oil consumption.  They all asked us, “why?”.  We didn’t see any direct reason…no oil leaks, no bad valve seals, no turbo seal leaks, no bad compression or piston ring “blow by” present…yet, they all had higher than expected oil consumption.

For the Audi’s, we evaluated several oils, and after a long test period (1 year), we saw better results in our Audi customers cars, when we used Motul 8100x-cess 5w40 full synthetic engine oil.

On Porsche’s…we didn’t really see any issue…we used either Mobil1 0w40, or for our track customers, we occasionally used Motul Trophy 300V 0w40…a much newer, and different synthetic engine oil (this oil, and Joe Gibb’s Racing Driven racing oil use a new synthetic base stock)(more on this oil a little later).

But, it was on the BMWs and MINIs that we found a difference.

This is what the current BMW / MINI OEM synthetic oil is:

The BMW 5W30 motor oil is the factory engine oil approved for almost all BMW engines, except for BMW Diesel and some M3/M5/M6 engines. It’s the first oil approved in the US for BMW’s turbo N20 N54 N55 engines, including the S55 engine in the 2015+ F80 M3/F82 M4. This oil can also be used in E39 M5 and Z8 with the S62 engine, per the label inside the engine compartment. It can also be used in most MINI engines. Replaces the previous part number of 07510017866 (07-51-0-017-866).

This oil was especially formulated for the USA market to meet compatibility requirements with the high sulfur content in our fuels. It meets BMW LL01 and API SL specs for gasoline engines from 1997 up through today as well as ACEA A3/B3 requirements. This is the current oil used in BMW dealerships.

In January 2015 BMW changed official oil suppliers from Castrol to Shell. The new oils are designed to meet requirements of both the newer engines as well as older BMWs. This oil can be used in cars with either normally aspirated and or turbocharged engines…..and here’s the real irony….the Shell synthetic oil and the Pennzoil synthetic oil are almost one and the same! Since Shell is the producer on Pennzoil® motor oils, that makes Pennzoil the recommended oil for BMW engines…hmmm.

Beginning with July 2015 car production, new BMW models came with 0W20 or 0W30 BMW oil. However, BMW dealerships continued to sell 5W30 until that stock was depleted. The 5W30 is an acceptable alternative to the 0W20 and 0W30 BMW oil per BMW’s service bulletin.

Seeing that almost all of the oils meet all the European car North American synthetic oil standards (here is the list of synthetic oil standards for BMW):

BMW Oil Specifications

BMW Longlife-98 (BMW LL-98)
Special long-life engine oil, approved by BMW. Also meets ACEA A3/B3, API SJ/CD, EC SAE 5W-40. Usually required for BMWs manufactured before MY 2002. Obsolete since 2009.
BMW Longlife-01 (BMW LL-01)
Special BMW approval for fully synthetic long-life oil. Product meets ACEA A3/B3 and API: SJ/CD EC-II. Usually required for BMWs built after MY 2002. Can also be used where a BMW Longlife-98 oil is recommended.
BMW Longlife-01 FE (BMW LL-01 FE)
Fully synthetic long-life oil with fuel economy properties. Oils meeting this specifications must have a low HTHS viscosity to meet the manufacturer’s fuel economy requirements. These oils are only suitable for the following engines: N1x, N2x, N54, N55, N63, N74.
BMW Longlife-04 (BMW LL-04)
Special BMW approval for fully synthetic long-life oil. Viscosities are SAE 0W-30, 0W-40, 5W-30 and 5W-40. Usually required for BMWs equipped with a diesel particulate filter (DPF). Can also be used where a BMW Longlife-98 or BMW Longlife-01 oil is recommended.
BMW Longlife-12 (BMW LL-12)
Special motor oil for certain approved gasoline engines and the following diesel engines only: Nx7K1, Nx7U1, Nx7O1 from model year 2013. Not suitable for engines with 2 or 3 turbos.
BMW Longlife-14+ (BMW LL-14+)
Special motor oil for the following gasoline engines only: N20, Bx8 from model year 2014. Not allowed for diesel engines.

With that being said, what are the standards for some of the common oils:

Motul 8100x-cess
ACEA Standards: ACEA A3/B4
OEM APPROVALS: BMW LL-01 ; MB-APPROVAL 229.5 / 226.5 ; PORSCHE A40 ; RENAULT RN0700 – RN0710 ; VW 502 00 – 505 00; GM-OPEL LL B-025 (DIESEL) ; FIAT 9.55535-H2 /M2/N2 ; PSA B71 2296

Motul 8100x-clean
ACEA Standards: ACEA C3
OEM APPROVALS: BMW LL-04 ; FORD WSS M2C 917 A ; GM-OPEL DEXOS2TM ; MB-APPROVAL 229.51 ; PORSCHE A40 ; RENAULT RN0710 – RN0700 ; VW 502 00 – 505 00 – 505 01; FIAT 9.55535-S2

ACEA Standards: ACEA A3/B3, A3/B4
OEM APPROVALS:  MB-Approval 229.3 , MB-Approval 229.5 , VW 502 00/505 00, PORSCHE A40

Pennzoil / Shell
ACEA Standards: ACEA A1/B1-10, A1/B1-12 (SAE 0W-20, SAE 5W-20, SAE 5W-30, SAE 10W-30*), ACEA A5/B5-10, A5/B5-12 (SAE 5W-30, SAE 10W-30*)
OEM APPROVALS: OEM specifications:
Chrysler MS-6395 (SAE 0W-20, SAE 5W-20, SAE 5W-30, SAE 10W-30)
Chrysler MS12633 (SRT) (SAE 0W-40)
GM dexos1™ Certification (SAE 0W-20, SAE 5W-20, SAE 5W-30)
GM 4718M (Corvette and Cadillac) (SAE 5W-30, SAE 10W-30)
GM 6094M (SAE 5W-20, SAE 5W-30, SAE 10W-30)
Ford WSS-M2C930-A and WSS-M2C945-A (SAE 5W-20)
Ford WSS-M2C929-A and WSS-M2C946-A (SAE 5W-30)
Ford WSS-M2C947-A (SAE 0W-20)
Honda/Acura HTO-06 (SAE 5W-30)

So, armed with the above data….we also set out on our own informal test.  We had seen the issues in MINIs and BMWs…so, what would happen if we changed the oil?  We tried the Motul 8100xcess for gas engined BMWs and MINIs, and the 8100xclean for diesels.

Oil consumption dropped by over HALF.  Test results showed less wear.

While this is not a conclusive test….in our view, this says that there is indeed a difference, and we want nothing but the best for our customers (and since the Motul is the same cost as the BMW / MINI / Shell / Pennzoil), this is a WIN-WIN in our view.

BRracing – protecting your car

BMW E46 330i – Never Too Old

BMW E46 330i – Never Too Old

Normally, our customer projects come to us early in the car’s life…either right after being purchased, and the customer wants to make some changes, or later in life, as the objectives and use of the car change.    This project was quite the opposite.  This is Alex’s car, a daily driver, used for long commutes.  When we first started servicing the car, the car had about 130k miles on it.  When we then started the slippery slope of the upgrades, the car had over 230k miles on it. These 100k miles have been put on in just the last 4 years.

We had done the normal services and repairs..and the car was great.  Very reliable, comfortable, just want you want from a car. Then Alex got bit by the track bug.  He has been a great customer for many years, and kept seeing all the other cars at our shop, and started asking the question, “what do all these other guys do with their cars?”  They take them to the track.  “What is that, what is that all about?  Can anyone do that?  Can you do it with normal street cars, or do you have to have a special track car?”  The answers opened the door to the slippery slope of going to the track.  So, Alex took his high mileage, normal daily driver, to the track (went w Hooked On Driving (HOD) for his first track experience, a great group to start with).  No upgrades, no changes, no special tires, notihing was changed.  He thoroughly enjoyed the experience….way too much so.

So, this started the next phase of the slippery slope.  Heh…my tires seem to be making a lot of noise, and are starting to overheat, and “chunk” in some locations.  Can I get some better tires that will work well w both my commute and my occassional track day?  Yep…can do.  He had been running on Continental DWS06, our preferred tire of choice for our commuter customers, but definitely not the tire of choice for track use.  We then upgraded his tires from the Conti DWS06 to the new Conti ExtremeSport.  A good, solid value, and one that can endure both normal street driving (no noise, wears well, great all around traction), and can be abused at the track……but, this opened the question….Heh…if we are going to change tires, can we fit a slightly larger tire on the car, and are there other things we should consider if we do that?

Yep…we can fit bigger tires, and can change the symmetry of the tires as well….and there are other considerations that we should think about if we are going to make this change.  It would be great to get a set of wheels that are strong (for track use), light weight, optimized for fitment to your BMW, and can accomodate bigger brakes if added in the future.   Great…lets do that.

That led us to get a set of APEX ARC8 wheels, in a slightly larger size, in 18″ diameter, and we could now run both larger tires in the front and the rear, but also allow us to increase the tire size in the front even more than the rear, to get to a near “square” setup.  Perfect.

Alex immediately noticed the difference in feel, “turn in”, handling and grip at his next track day.  Wow…the grip was amazing….but, now the car really rolls in the turns, and the nose and tail dip under hard braking.  Is there something we should consider suspension wise?  Yep….we need to slightly lower the center of gravity of the car, we need to firm up the shocks….yet, we want to ensure that this can still work well for your daily commute.  That brought us to the long discussion about shocks, springs, ride height…and dual purpose use.

Our “go to” solution for the dual purpose user is the Bilstein PSS9 coil-over system (adjustable front strut, front springs, rear adjustable shocks, rear adjustable spring perches, rear springs).  Great value, EASY to adjust, adjustable ride height, right spring rates for this car.  We have tons of customers who regularly use these on their track cars, so we know the shock valving can achieve the desired results there, but you can also QUICKLY change the setting to provide even a more comfortable ride than stock for daily driving.  This is by far the greatest attribute of this setup…the ease of changing the setup (takes about 10 mins, no special tools, can be done by anyone).  There are far more expensive and sophisticated coil-over setups, and they certainly produce a great track system, but for dual duty, we don’t believe there is a better solution that achieves the objectives for both daily driving and track use.

Next round of track days comes and goes.  Alex loves the new better handing…but asks, ” the car still is a little delayed on turn in, and the rear feels like it has a mind of its own under hard cornering… there something wrong?”  Nope….just more changes needed.  The front lower control arm bushings and rear trailing arm bushings are worn out, cracked, torn, and these are allowing the car to move under load.  They need to be replaced….and if we are going to replace them, we should upgrade them.  Don’t want to bring in any downside, just improve the solution.  Enter our other “go to” element for BMW suspensions….bushings.  We use Powerflex polyurethane bushings….come in multiple “durameters” for the right fitment, and have a lifetime warranty.  On this BMW, it will need the front lower control arm bushings (often referred to as LCABs or FCABs), and the rear trailing arm bushings (RTABs).

The result?  All things are better….even daily driving feels better.  Steering input and reaction is much improved, car feels much more stable in the turns, even on just freeway on and off ramps. But, improvements at the track usually result in more things coming to light.  Alex could feel the improved handling, the crisp reaction to his inputs…this allowed Alex to continue to drive the car harder and harder…he had far more confidence in the car, its placement, his control.  Alex indeed drove the car harder….even deeper into the corners.  However, as a result of this confidence boost, he also started braking much harder, more aggressively.  The brakes were not up to the task anymore….the pedal would go soft, long travel, brakes starting to overheat.  What can be done?  Some think that changing the rotor type, stainless steel lines might be a good next step….NOPE.  Those things will not help.  Stainless steel brake lines are a good safety step, and will produce a more solid pedal feel, but they won’t solve the bigger brake issue.  Alex needs bigger brakes…bigger rotors, bigger calipers, more stopping power, and a caliper that provides other pad choices for the future.

We can debate the brake choices…but our two favorites are either Brembo or StopTech.  For Alex, we went w the StopTech front big brake kit.  Four piston calipers, stianless steel lines, 2-piece rotors, and their “street / performance” pad set….we love this pad choice for daily drivers…as that is really what this cars main duty is, to provide a comfortable, reliable, car for his long daily commute.  We could go w a more aggressive pad…but all more aggressive pads will likely result in horrible brake squeal….these do not.

While addressing the continued need for upgrades…..we have also addressed the other normal wear and tear items on the car…things like the cooling system (complete new radiator, all hoses, water pump, thermostat), changed brake fluid type (to a much more suitable track type….we have five different grades of brake fluid to choose from), frequent oil changes and sampling, differential / transmisison fluid upgrades…..and the car has been a champ.  Who would have thought a 230k+ mileage car would make such a great dual duty solution, and still be going so strong!  The way the car has been working, you would think it had only 40k miles on it….WOW.

Careful of that slippery slope…..but, if you want JOY in driving, then come over to the dark side.

Making cars AWESOME….BRracing

Porsche GT4 – ALL IN

Porsche GT4 Acid Green – ALL IN

Its not very often we get one of these projects, but oh what fun it is. At BRracing, we always want to ensure that we match the objectives / target / results, with the enhancements that are to be implemented.  Not all cars need all the enhancements possible, and one of those objectives that we have to work wihtin is making the most with the budget we have.

But, in this case…we were given free reign.  The objective, just make it the best car possible for both street driving and track use.  We had some unusual requirements, as the customer is very tall, and has very long legs.  This would mean a different approach relative to seat / steering wheel fitment, even though the base car has some adjustment, they were not sufficient to allow a comfortable driving position.

As we have mentioned in our other write ups about the GT4, the base platform is very good….but not perfect. There were lots of small enhancements implemented by Porsche in the GT4 platform, but some areas were left wanting.  We know also that Porsche purposedly took some power away, to preent the performance of the GT4 to encroach too much on the 911 territory, so that is an easy target.  Plus…we wanted to create some excitement, make people go “oh wow” when they see the car.

– Engine

– Software tune

– Suspension

– Body / Graphics / Protection

– Brakes

– Safety

– Drivetrain


The good news, great news is that Porsche put the 911 3.8L engine in the GT4. However, to ensure the proper marketing position, Porsche “de-tuned” the 3.8L engine when put into the GT4. What did they do?  Simple exterior changes…changed the intake, changed the tune, and changed the exhaust.  By limiting the engine in these areas, Porsche took some grunt away…but, the great news is that those are all easy changes to make, and we can restore the lost power. When we raced the GT4 Clubsport in its first year of racing (2016), we found that Porsche had restricted the intake, exhaust, and software tune.  Therefore, for street cars, we don’t have to follow the rules, we can unleash the beast hiding within. The first step then was to alter the intake system (intake plenum, throttle body).  IPD has the pieces, and on some other Porsche engines, they don’t have that big of an impact, but on the GT4, they are just what we needed.

The throttle body is the other element of the intake that needs to be upgraded…and the parts bin of Porsche provides us the solution in the stock GT3 throttle body.  It’s a perfect fitment, and mates well w the new silicon hose of the IPD plenum.

So, we have enhanced the intake side, to allow the bigger engine to breathe better, but that’s only half the equation.  If we make the engine breathe better, then we also need to let it exhale better. That would be the logical response, but there is also a factual response.  Again, with the racing experience we had w the Porsche GT4 Clubsport in 2016, and the chance to work directly with Porsche Motorsport at all the events, we had several discussions about the exhaust system of the GT4. We encountered some issues during the year, and to the point that Porsche Motorsport issued a change in the engine exhaust system mid-season. Taking this into consideration, we reviewed the exhaust systems out there, and also those designed by the same people we played with on the Pirelli Cup series, GMG fully understood what needed to be done, and provided the solution in their exhaust header system for the GT4.  it flows better, protects the ignition coils better, protects some of the suspension / drivetrain better…..a win / win / win solution. Oh, and by the way, it sounds AWESOME as well.


We believe there is a little misconception in the market….with the thinking that a software tune will unlock some hidden power in the engine.  For the most part, that is NOT true.  The normal stock elements of the DME / ECU, the thermal sensors, the O2 sensors, the cam sensors, the variable valve timing and the knock sensors allow the engine to manage itself within a relatively wide range of conditions, fuel trims.  The stock engine can fully detect what “octane” rating the fuel is, and adjust appropriately for the cam timing and the ignition timing.  If you push ignition timing forward (one of the normal “tune” parameters), the knock sensor will detect the change, and often retard the timing automatically, and therefore, take away any power a “tune” tries to implement.

However…if you make sizeable performance changes, then the stock engine performance window will be different than the target, and you need a tune to take full advantage of the changes.  Hence, if it is a turbo engine, and you dramatically change the boost, then a tune will be needed to unlock the power.

With the addition of the intake plenum, intake hose, and throttle body…plus the exhaust to be talked about later, a tune was what the doctor ordered.  If we are going to implement a tune, then the tune we like more than any other is the Cobb Tuning solution….its a hand held “access point” device, that offers a lot of features besides just being a hand held tuner.  No tune is ever perfect, and no project is ever done, and the Cobb unit allows you to alter, change, update, and upload a different tune at any time, and also to restore to stock at any time.  Many other tune solutions, require the ECU to be pulled, “flashed” and then installed….that’s often a three day experience…whereas the Cobb is a five minute effort.


The stock suspension in the stock GT4, is, for the most part, just fine.  Other than the attroxious alignment.  We have written about the horrible stock alignment…and the variety of setup options (Phase 1 to Phase 4) that we have defined depending on the specific needs, type of tires being run, and aggressiveness of the customer.  To achieve anthing beyond the Phase 1 settings, you need to replace some of the suspension pieces….and to do it optimally, you want to replace the front upper strut mount with the Porsche Motorsport unit.  The other piece is the rear toe link, as there is not enough adjustment range in the stock unit to achieve the toe setting in the rear, once rear negative camber is set in the target range.  One of the other pieces that goes a little beyond this is the ride height itself.  Most don’t know of the change needed, or the reason needed, but the ride height and rake of the car can be changed (great news here is that the stock GT4 comes with adjustable height coil-overs…so making this change can be done with the stock suspension), and should be changed to optimize the handling of the car.

New Porsche Motorsport unit on the left, stock unit on the right (below) – front upper strut mount

Now, for this customer…he wanted to go beyond, to get the best.  We have to keep in mind that this is still a street car, daily driven, on the freeways in our local area.  If this were being made into a ClubSport, we would take a different approach.  Therefore, we replaced the stock coil-overs w KW Clubsport units.  To do this, we would need to eliminate / defeat the EDC system as well (electronic dampening control that comes with the car, and the selectable shock setting from the centner consule).  Along w the KW  Clubsport, we also implemented KW’s EDC delete kit.

Body / Graphics / Protection

This is one of the fun areas of the project. We wanted to make a tasteful statement, an “oh wow” type of statement with the body and graphics, and yet look perfectly wtihin the normal Porsche design methods and styles. We have loved the Porsche Acid Green color, and the silver color of this car is the perfect match, so we designed some graphic elements, additions to add to the style, and we would use the “acid green” (from the Porsche 918 hybrid).  The customer also wanted full body protection….so, how do you combine both full body protection and graphics? We did the full body / clear bra to every surface of the car first (and we mean every surface), and then had the graphics installed / applied.

Now, with the body and style elements addressed, we turned out attention to the rear wing. There are a couple of approaches to dealing with the rear wiing (Vorsteiner, SalterAero), and we have implemented both.  The pricing and methods are a little different, but the results nearly the same. Both will raise the rear wing, get the wing into cleaner air, and make the rear wing more efficient (you don’t really need more rear wing, but the rear tends to feel unstable at very high speed sweepers…and this helps).  For this customer, we went with the Salter Aero replacement rear wind uprights.  Very well made, and they get the wing up, and also out of the rear view mirror obstruction.


The stock brakes are just fine, for either street driving or track events.  But, if the car has the Porsche Carbon Ceramic brakes (PCCB), we are still seeing too much degradation and wear to warrant long term track use.  The PCCBs, once up to temp, offer great braking results and feel…but the cost to replace is just too high.  So, for almost all our track junkies w PCCBs, we recommend replacing the PCCBs w steel.

For this customer, the current brakes were steel, not PCCB, so they offered another benefit to the overall design….we could make them AID GREEN just like Porsche’s hybrid cars….and that would match exactly to the current project color scheme.  We pulled the brake calipers, had them completely cleaned, prepped, then powder coated ACID GREEN to match the color scheme of the car, and then added the stock Porsche brake caliper decal to resemble the stock hybrid brake calipers.  Sweet!


Often when customers come in, and talk to us about their cars about track use, the first thing on their mind is performance, but the first thing on our mind is safety. In this case, the good news was that the customer ordered the car with the Porsche Carbon Fiber Sport Bucket Seats, with integrated airbags, shoulder harness seat back openings (and multiple height options), center submarine hole, and deeper side cutouts for the waist seatbelt elements.

We have written about the various approaches to the rear harness bar / roll bar for the GT4.  This customer is very tall, so we needed to ensure that the rear roll bar would not inhibit, or limit the full movement to the rear of the seat.  That further reinforced our decision to go with the GMG bar solution, and we would use our traditional approach of putting the shoulder harness mounts on the rear firewall (ensuring proper location, angle, strength, and prevents us from having to cut up th interior pieces like many of the other bar solutions do…and the GMG bar has better rear view mirror view (or less obstruction).  The GMG bar also, we believe, is stronger due to the angles of the downbars, cross bars.


There is one item in the drivetrain that most would like to change…the 1st / 2nd gear ratio.  They are too long, or too tall.  However, the stock 1/2nd gears, in the transmission, are a once piece assemlby, and can not be changed.  We contemplated having a custom, billet new transmission shaft built w a new 1st / 2nd gear, but the time and expense was too great.  Some companies out there are changing the 3rd gear, which can be changed, but for street and track use, we don’t believe that is a smart move, we think that actually makes the current 1st / 2nd gear even worse.

But, a piece that can be upgraded is the stock rear differential.  Not many have taken a look at this, and few know of the supplier of these units, but this is another track soft spot for the GT4. We grabbed a Drexler racing rear diff, and implemented that for better traction, on throttle, for corner exits.

There you have it….a complete project upgrade in every way.  Just what the customer wanted.

What can we build for you?

BRracing – bringing JOY to our customers

Mercedes ABC Filter?

MERCEDES ABC Fluid / Filter – Service?

So many of the car manufacturers these days are specifying “lifetime” fluids.  An example is the Mercedes ABC (Automatic Body Control) suspension system, which uses normal hydraulic fluid, like power steering fluid.  What is the normal service interval for changing the ABC fluid?  There is NONE…it is lifetime.  Yet, on the other hand, we see LOTS of Mercedes in the shop that have ABC system failures, of several components, and these elements are not cheap to repair or replace.

So, are we to just accept this, or is this just an attempt by the manufacturers to push to the side some of the normal maintenance procedures to help “pretend” that the overall maintenance costs of the car are less, to demonstrate to potential car buyers that the cars are not very expensive to maintain?  We have seen that with BMW / MINI, where they changed the normal oil change service interval from 7.5k / 10k miles, to 15k miles, just because they wanted to show the public that the cost to maintain the BMW over the initial 5 years of ownership was less, only to have it come back and bite them.  In 2013, BMW  and MINI changed their position, and reverted to where the car should have its oil changed every 7.5k / 10k miles.  Is this what Mercedes is doing w the ABC system as well?  How would we know?  How could we find out?  Well….inquiring minds want to know.

So, just like back in high school science class, if you have a hypothesis, you set up a test plan, and set about to see if your hypothesis is proven to be true.  If the hypothesis in this case is the Mercedes ABC system needs to be serviced regularly, rather than run as a “lifetime” fluid, then we need two cars, and two samples, to conduct side by side tests.  Due to the size of the BRracing customer base, this is possible….and, this takes time, years in fact.

We would have one car that has run with the normal ABC system, w no changes, no fluid flushes.  The other car, we would …..put a special filter assembly into the ABC system, and run it, and then perform the ABC fluid changes regularly.

What has the filter got to do w the test?  Part of the reasoning in the hypothesis is that the fluid accumulates particles, and these particles are the reason for the wear in the ABC system, ultimately causing the failures and damage to the ABC system components.  We have also seen this in many of the transmissions that have “lifetime” fluid, like the early BMW and MINI transmissions.  To further prove the point w the ABC system, the filter would have a spherical magnet, in position in the filter to draw away from the flow the particles, rather than just have a filter to try to separate them from the fluid flow.  The filter would also have a serviceable element, to allow us to further clean and purify the system on a regular basis, or constant basis. Finally, the filter would have a “window” to where we could examine the color and state of the fluid all the time, or whenever desired.  We know we have seen the dark, dirty hydraulic fluid, and when you subject that fluid to a magnet, particles can be drawn out of it.

Finally, as part of the test, after the subject test time / mileage, the suspension parts would be dismantled and examined, and determined if any change occurred in the wear, along w the documentation if any change was noted in the failure rates of the parts.  While the test sample is small, the test results could prove the hypothesis none the less.


We indeed found, very quickly, that the hydraulic fluid indeed captured metal particles. We could see the area around the magnet capture and hold the metal particles.  We could also see that the fluid color was staying clearer than the other test vehicle (w no filter, and no fluid changes).  Finally, over a long period of time, we pulled the suspension elements of the ABC system (shocks, pump, solenoids) and compared the two.  The results are clear, the system w the filter and fluid changes were in dramatically better condition, and had no failures, while the baseline car had wear, and had ABC suspension failures.

Its simple….we need to service all fluids…there does not appear to be a case of “lifetime” fluids, at least not relative to the ABC Mercedes suspension system.

Don’t neglect your car, ensure it gets the service it needs….you can pay now, or pay much more later.

BRracing – providing better care for our customers cars

BMW M4 GT4 Race Car Released


May 24, 2017

Motorsport customers can now order the new BMW M4 GT4, the latest model in the BMW Motorsport product range. The technologically advanced car has completed over 20,000 kilometres of tests, multiple hours in the wind tunnel, extensive application runs for fine-tuning purposes, and successful test outings under race conditions.

BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt, together with Dirk Adorf (GER), who was heavily involved in the testing of the car as development driver, launched the sales phase during an exclusive customer event at the Nürburgring (GER), May 26, 2017. The BMW M4 GT4, which is ready for use thanks to a comprehensive starter package, will cost 169,000 Euros (about $185k US).

“Even after many years, the launch of a new car is still one of the absolute highlights for me as BMW Motorsport Director,” said BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt at the presentation event in the paddock at the Nürburgring. “The start of the sales phase sees us reach another milestone with the BMW M4 GT4. We are looking forward to seeing the car enjoy success in the hands of our customer teams starting in 2018. We are offering our customers a sophisticated and reliable GT4 car, which incorporates all of BMW Motorsport’s expertise, coupled with the strong basis provided by the BMW M4 Coupé. The development of the BMW M4 GT4 focussed on mileage, cost efficiency and ease of maintenance.”

Production technology meets motorsport innovation.
This is guaranteed by the use of proven production technology and innovative developments from the BMW M6 GT3. The engine and transmission, including control electronics, were adopted from the BMW M4 Coupé (combined consumption: 8.3 l/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 194 g/km). The carbon bonnet comes from the BMW M4 GTS (combined consumption: 8.5 l/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 199 g/km). In addition, the BMW M4 GT4 has carbon-fibre doors, motorsport-specific front splitters and rear wings, and a racing exhaust system. The seat, brakes and pedal box make use of solutions that are also included in the top model in customer racing, the BMW M6 GT3. The interior concept is designed entirely for the comfort of the driver, so that he or she can focus fully on driving.

The BMW engineers went in a totally new direction in terms of engine control software. The BMW M4 GT4 is the first BMW Motorsport car to be fitted with power sticks, which can be pre-programmed for different engine performance levels. Thanks to the system, which has been approved by the SRO Motorsports Group and is well protected against manipulation, Plug-and-Play gives BMW Motorsport customers the ability to react quickly and flexibly to changes to the Balance of Performance in various races.

Next Big Test: 24h Nürburgring.
In recent months, the BMW M4 GT4 has been tested by many BMW works drivers, BMW Junior drivers and customer racing drivers at various racetracks, with different tire types and in a wide range of external conditions. The purpose of this testing was to adapt all the technical applications, such as the DSC stability system and ABS, to meet the demands of motor racing in as much detail as possible. The car has already proven its reliability and performance in races on the Nordschleife and at the 24 Hours of Dubai (UAE).

The outing at this weekend’s Nürburgring 24 Hours in Germany is the next tough test in the development of the BMW M4 GT4. Dirk Adorf (GER), BMW Motorsport Junior Ricky Collard (GBR) and Jörg Weidinger (GER), test and development engineer at BMW M GmbH and himself a very successful participant in the BMW Sports Trophy for many years, will use the endurance classic to gain more valuable knowledge about the new car. They will race at the Nürburgring 24 Hours alongside British motorsport journalist Jethro Bovingdon (GBR) in the BMW M4 GT4 media car, with the support of tire partner Hankook. Never before has a journalist had the opportunity to drive a pre-production BMW car like the BMW M4 GT4.

Anyone interested in purchasing a BMW M4 GT4 should please contact by email at:

Interested parties in the USA should please contact:

Technical Data of the BMW M4 GT4:

Length excl. splitter: 4,671 mm
Length incl. splitter: 4,750 mm
Width excl. mirrors: 1,877 mm
Width incl. mirrors: 2,014 mm
Height: 1,369 mm variable
Wheelbase: 2,812 mm

Type: Six-cylinder in-line, four valves
Technology: M TwinPower turbo technology, direct injection, Valvetronic
Capacity: 2,979 cc
Output: More than 431 hp (depending on balance of performance)
Engine management: Production engine electronics – output via power stick can be adjusted according to defined BoP
Exhaust system: Motorsport-specific lightweight exhaust system

Fuel Tank
FT3 safety tank
Capacity: 125 litres (depending on regulations)

Chassis with DMSB-certified welded safety roll cage (compliant with FIA regulations), manufactured by BMW Motorsport
Roof, doors and bonnet made from CFRP
Makrolon® discs (heated front disc)
Motorsport front splitters made from CFRP
Motorsport rear wing made from CFRP, customisable
Motorsport dive plane made from CFRP
Air jack system
Bonnet and hatchback quick-release lock
Lightweight motorsport wiring harness

Motorsport-specific control connections
Adjustable motorsport stabilisers front and rear
Specially adapted motorsport shock absorbers (Öhlins) front and rear
Springs, each with three spring rates for the front and rear axle available

7-gear dual clutch transmission with motorsport software
Mechanical differential lock with separate cooling
Purpose-built output shafts with wheel bearings adapted for motorsport (rear axle)

Drivers Aids
Stability systems specifically adapted for BMW Motorsport (DSC/ABS)

11 x 18 inch alloy wheels
Tyre dimensions: 300/660 R18 (delivery on Hankook tyres)

6-piston, fixed calliper front, AP Racing
Diameter of brake disks: 390 mm
4-piston, fixed calliper rear, AP Racing
Diameter of brake disks: 355 mm
Balance beams for adjusting the brake balance at the front and rear
Double-suction brake air cooling

BRracing Motorsports comments – when you look at the recent success of the fairly new BMW F22 M235i factory race car (there were over 12 of them in the most recent Pirelli World Challenge race at Lime Rock in the TC class, and we have tested w one of the cars (the BMW M2345i race car), that car is incredibly easy to drive, very balanced.  This new car should stand up well, be less expensive to maintain…but will also face some considerable competition w the new Audi R8 GT4 also just released, the McLaren 570s GT4, the Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport…this is an exciting time for racing around the world).

See us if interested in the car, or service / support.  BRracing Motorsport is one of the few teams that has full BMW OEM diagnostic systems to fully support this car.

BRracing – making your track dreams come true

New Porsche 991.2 GT3

New Porsche 991.2 GT3

500 hp from a naturally aspirated four-liter flat-six available with PDK or six-speed manual

Porsche North America – Atlanta, Georgia. Porsche motorsport technology continues to be incorporated into street-legal sports cars. The new 911 GT3 was developed in Weissach,and will be manufactured on the same production line as all other 911 street and 911 GT3 Cup racecars. The centerpiece of the latest 911 GT3 is the new naturally aspirated 4.0 liter flat-six engine which produces 500 hp and 339 lb.-ft. of torque. This new, high-reving powerplant is based on the one now used in all 911 race cars, including the 911 GT3 R and 911 RSR. The redesigned chassis with Rear Axle Steering and systematic lightweight construction is specifically tuned to produce superior driving dynamics in conjunction with the naturally aspirated engine.

Thanks to a power-to-weight ratio of 6.4 pounds per hp, the 911 GT3 feels very much at home on the test track. With the standard seven-speed dual-clutch transmission (PDK) – specifically constructed and tuned for the GT3 – the 3,153 pound two-seater accelerates from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 3.2 seconds with a top track speed of 197 miles per hour. For purists, Porsche will also offer the 911 GT3 with a six-speed manual transmission. With this transmission, the 911 GT3 weighs in at 3,116 pounds, allowing it to achieve a top track speed of 198 miles per hour and hit 60 mph in 3.8 seconds.

Fast in corners, stable on the straights: Track-bred chassis with rear axle steering
The chassis of the new 911 GT3 benefits from Porsche motorsport racing experience, and it has been tuned for improved handling and driving dynamics. The chassis and active Rear Axle Steering offer superlative handling characteristics. Depending upon the speed, the rear wheels are steered either in the opposite or the same direction as the front wheels, improving the vehicle’s agility and stability. The dynamic engine mounts and the rear locking differential, both fitted as standard, also boost the car’s driving dynamics.

Visually, the lightweight carbon fiber rear wing reinforces the fact that the design of the car is driven by aerodynamics. The lightweight front fascia and the front spoiler are designed for optimum airflow. The rear end with exhaust air openings and a new diffuser also contribute to the overall aerodynamic efficiency.
Interior: A control center for exceptional driving dynamics
The interior of the new 911 GT3 is designed to underscore the exciting driving experience. The GT Sport steering wheel designed with a 14.1 inch diameter was adopted from the 918 Spyder. The Sport Seats Plus feature enhanced bolsters for increased lateral support and electric adjustment of the seat back and seat height.

There are two other seat options available for the 911 GT3. The Adaptive Sport Seats Plus offer an 18-way electric adjustment along with a power steering column and seat memory. Alternatively, Full Bucket Seats with electric height adjustment and a fixed carbon fiber reinforced backrest are also available. As on all GT variants, the rear seats are omitted to save weight.

Porsche Track Precision App as standard
In addition to the Porsche Communication Management (PCM) – which includes a navigation system capable of real-time traffic information and the Connect Plus Module including Apple Car Play – the Porsche Track Precision App is also included as standard equipment. Using this app, 911 GT3 drivers can display, record, and analyze detailed driving data on a smartphone.

Pricing and availability
The 2018 911 GT3 is scheduled to reach U.S. dealers in fall 2017. The base MSRP will be $143,600, excluding the $1,050 delivery, processing, and handling fee.

BMW Intro’s new M4 CS


The new BMW M4 CS closes the gap between the BMW M4 Competition Package model and the uncompromising BMW M4 GTS.

The new BMW M4 CS, a special-edition model from BMW M GmbH, will be produced in limited numbers from 2017 – 2019.

The M4 CS also sees BMW M GmbH introducing a new nomenclature for its models. Positioned above the standard M models will be the performance-boosted Competition versions. Then come the CS, special- edition models, a notch higher still. Positioned on top are the performance-maximising “brand shapers” which display a clear motor sport or club sport character but are also fully road legal.
The new BMW M4 CS is fitted with the same six-cylinder in-line engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology that has proved its potency in the existing BMW M4 models. It channels the engine’s power through the seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission (M DCT) as standard.

The output of the new BMW M4 CS has been raised to 338 kW/460 hp (10 hp more than the BMW M4 with Competition Package) and peak torque to 600 Nm / 442 lb-ft (+ 50 Nm / 37 lb-ft). Fuel economy and emissions are the same as those of the BMW M4 Coupe with DCT (fuel consumption combined: 8.4 l/100 km [33.6 mpg imp]*; CO2 emissions combined: 197 g/km*).

The new BMW M4 CS sprints from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 3.9 seconds.
Top speed is an electronically limited 280 km/h (174 mph).

The new BMW M4 CS has even sportier suspension tuning to further enhance performance. Like the other BMW M4 models, the new BMW M4 CS has been honed at the Nürburgring Nordschleife. Its fastest lap is 7 min. 38 sec.
One of the key ingredients in the supreme dynamic ability of the new BMW M4 CS is the rigorous application of lightweight design. The bonnet / hood, roof, front splitter, gurney, rear diffuser and even the single-piece drive shaft consist of carbon fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP). The result is a low curb weight of just 1,580 kilograms (EU).

The weight of the door trim has also been minimized, featuring compacted natural fibers and surfacing with a classy carbon-fiber look. The lightweight door pull loops also enhance the sporting character of the new BMW M4 CS.

The front splitter and spoiler lip on the boot lid have been newly designed and reduce lift.

The new BMW M4 CS is equipped as standard with M compound brakes featuring blue-painted four-piston brake callipers at the front and two- piston callipers at the rear. M carbon ceramic brakes with gold-coloured, anodised six-piston brake callipers for the front and four-piston callipers for the rear are available as an option.

A new DTM-design light-alloy wheel variant has been developed specially for the BMW M4 CS in Orbit Grey. It comes in a 9 x 19 –inch format for the front and 10 x 20 inches for the rear. The ten-spoke wheels are fitted as standard with road-legal Michelin cup tyres (front: 265/35 R 19, rear: 285/30 R 20). Higher-profile sports tyres can be ordered as an option.

The sports exhaust system with four tailpipes – each with an 80- millimetre diameter – have been carried over from the BMW M4 with Competition Package. The four tailpipe embellishers are made from stainless steel and carry the M logo.
Two new and exclusive colours are available for the BMW M4 CS special edition specifically: San Marino Blue metallic and Lime Rock Grey metallic. Plus, the M4 CS can also be ordered in Alpine White, Sapphire Black metallic or Frozen Dark Blue II (limited availability, est. from November 2017).

The interior of the new BMW M4 CS is dominated by a mixture of sporty and sophisticated Alcantara and leather. The lightweight-design centre console is likewise trimmed in classy Alcantara, as are the interior trim strips. The handbrake lever gaiter is in Alcantara and also features contrast stitching.

The optional M Alcantara steering wheel is covered with ultra-grippy, anthracite-coloured Alcantara in the finest M tradition.

Special lightweight M sports seats with exclusive Merino leather and Alcantara covers, plus illuminated BMW M badges in the backrests, accentuate the sporty appearance of the M4 CS.

The new BMW M4 CS features the rear lights in futuristic OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) technology with 3D effect designed exclusively for BMW M GmbH.

Standard features designed to increase driving comfort in the BMW M4 CS include the BMW Navigation system Professional, automatic climate control, automatically dimming rear-view and exterior mirrors, plus optional adaptive LED headlights with BMW Selective Beam (dazzle-free high beam assistant).
BMW Individual high-gloss Shadow Line trim with extended features.
The new BMW M4 CS special-edition model will be built alongside the M4 Coupe at BMW’s birthplace – Plant Munich. Production is scheduled to begin in July 2017.

Technical data for the BMW M4 CS at a glance:

Six-cylinder in-line engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology (with two mono-scroll turbochargers, High Precision Injection, variable valve timing (VALVETRONIC) and variable camshaft timing (Double-VANOS). Capacity: 2,979cc.
Output: 338 kW/460 hp at 6,250 rpm,
max. torque: 600 Nm [442 lb-ft] at 4,000 – 5,380 rpm.
Acceleration (0–100 km/h [62 mph]): 3.9 seconds,
top speed (governed): 280 km/h [174 mph].
Fuel consumption combined: 8.4 l/100 km [33.6 mpg imp]*,
CO2 emissions combined: 197 g/km*, exhaust standard: EU6.

DATA courtesy of BMW Gmbh, BMW press release, April 18, 2017.

Porsche 991 GT3RS – Mean

Porsche 991 GT3 RS – MEAN

As the car industry continues to mature, and become very technical, and very flexible in meeting the specific needs and wants of its customers, the overall “modding” of cars is going down.  If you want coil-overs on your new BMW M3, you can get them from the factory, want Carbon Fiber parts, you can get them from the factory, want special colors on your Porsche (like a Lambo green), you can order it just that way…want different interior elements, you can get that too.  So, the enhancements and modifications that are either being asked for by customers, or added later are diminishing.  But, nonetheless, there is still room for improvement, and that is just what this customer wanted.  The target….brand new, just off the boat (literally…landed in port on a Tuesday, to the dealer by Thursday, cleaned and prepped on Friday, to the customer on Saturday, and to BRR for this project on Monday), brand new Porsche 991.1 GT3RS, in a stunning color….UltraViolet.

So….what did the customer want?

  • Sound (exhaust)
  • Power (headers, tune)
  • Safety (roll bar)
  • Refinement (trim, decals, clear lenses, painted reflectors)


What does it mean, “sound”?  The customer wanted MEAN, Porsche Cup Car sound….well….that means a GMG sport exhaust.  Lighter weight, better flow, and the mean, menacing scream of extreme power at high revs….oh, THAT SOUND. I could listen to that sound all day long.  Fitment, weld quality, looks, details…everything is just right.  Almost like a piece of art.


Not a lot that you can do to one of the most refined engines on the planet.  But, there are small touches that can add to the solution, help flatten the torque curve, bring a little more at high RPMS….and for the GT3RS, that means headers.  Again, we choose GMG.  Proven, fitment, quality, flow….they didn’t cut corners, they didn’t just make a set of headers, they made a set that anyone, just looking at them, knows they kick butt.  And that goes well w the theme for this car, MEAN. Combine the headers and the rear exhaust….oh baby.


The Porsche GT3RS was targeted, by the factory, to be a track weapon. In Europe, you can order the car with an integrated, interior roll bar / harness bar.  But, you can’t get that here in the US.  So, we wanted to add that element to this car.  Several firms make roll bars / harness bars.  Is there any difference?  You bet.  The same type of elements we look for in any product….fitment, quality, details, materials, finish.  But, there are also a few differences in the design as well.  Roll bars / harness bars are meant to be there for safety…and the design of the bar then becomes critical.  Mount locations, base plates, and most important, the triangulation of the bars themselves….yet, at the same time, doing so without sacrificing rear view.  This is where the GMG bar, in our opinion, sets itself apart. Another key point on the GMG bar, is it allows for full movement of the drivers seat….you can get the stock sport seats to go ALL the way back.  We have several customers, who are very tall, and this is a critical issue.  The angle of the horizontal harness bar is also key for safety…it needs to be a couple of inches (actually, there is a specific angle for the harness that it needs to be at) below the lowest point of the seat harness window opening.  The GMG bar does all of that.

Refinement / Trim / Art / Touch of Class

The Porsche 991.1 GT3RS is an amazing car…stunning.  But, at the same time, there are little things that can be done to truly make this unique, stunning.  To accomplish that for this car…

  • clear rear tail lights
  • painted rear reflectors
  • custom decals that tie all the colors together

The color theme for this car was the UltraViolet base purple, and the accent would be metallic silver.  The clear rear tail lights also look like they tie in with the silver…they have a clear silver hue….perfect.

Decals / Paint – side GT3RS decals, rear wing PORSCHE decal.  Not too much here, were not trying to go over the top, but that perfect refinement.  To complement the new silver decals…painted the wing end plates in silver too…now the project ties together.  NAILED it.

In addition the project elements detailed above…the customer wanted to know if we could enhance the front and rear integrated cameras….so, that when parking and approaching the front parking stops, the driver would know and be warned of the approaching items, and the same type of functionality for the back up camera….indeed we can.  We added front and rear view cameras, and integrated them into the factory navigation system, and utilized one of the stock dash buttons to allow for manual activation / de-activation of the front camera.  Works like a charm…fully integrated.

MEAN…that’s what this car is….just MEAN, aggresiveness, stunning to view from all angles.  WOW.


BRracing – bringing JOY and smiles for miles.

BMW E93 M3 – Evolving

BMW E93 M3 – Evolving

We would like to know what it is w BMW E93 convertible owners?  Of all the BMW E9x version M3’s we have upgraded….the majority seem to be the M3 convertible. I would have thought the 2 door coupe (E92), but nope…it’s the M3 convertible time after time. That is the case here too….this project was fairly straightforward, but as the title suggests, this is an ongoing project, and will continue to evolve.  But the requirements, objectives from the start were fairly simple – power, style, sound. That makes the answers fairly easy too….SC for the power, wheels / tires / tint / trim for the style, and exhaust for the sound.

With almost all naturally aspirated BMW engines, they are very finely tuned from the factory, and there is not a lot of head room for traditional tuning (in fact, if you come in and see us, and have a non-turbo engine, and ask about tuning…we will say there is no need to waste your money on a tune…you need to go extreme, go big, or do nothing).  So, in this case, if you want power, we go big. If we are going big, then we go w VF Engineering SuperCharger solutions.  A VF-540 kit (non-intercooled).  Upgraded boost (4- 4.5 PSI), new injectors for better flow, cooler plugs to deal w possible “pre-detontation” from the increased power, Vortech V3-Si Supercharger, cast intake manifold (manifold is upgradeable, should the customer desire to move to a Stage 2 or Stage 3 solution), ECU software update / flash, and all the other supporting parts.

The kit installs great.  No unusual acts, no trimming…it just fits. It just works. It just delivers power, torque.

We can attest to not only the kit, fit, finish, but longevity and reliability of the kit as well…we starting installing these kits (Stage 1, 2 and 3) all the way back in 2010, and all those customers are still our customers today, and we have never had ANY issues….NONE.  We even have  a VF Engr SC kit on our own M3…and we drive it almost every day.

There are a range of exhaust solutions that we will recommend for BMWs.  Meisterschaft, Eisenmann, Armytrix, and Akrapovic.  We always like providing a suite of options, especially when it comes to exhaust.  The sound an exhaust produces is very personal…each person has a different set of tastes.  We may like loud, high pitched tones, but the next person may want something completely different.  There are cheaper exhausts out there…but there is a reason we lead w the solutions mentioned above…we know they work, we know they fit, and we know they last.

We have struggled with so many other exhaust solutions out there…and the manufacturing / fabrication quality shows.  Not only in the material, but, mostly in the fitment or method of fitment.  This mostly has to to w the tip area…if the exhaust does not have adjustment options, then the fitment inside the rear bumper cover or diffuser will not be correct….and you are stuck forevermore w an exhaust that will drive you crazy.  Every time you look at it, you are reminded of the issue…don’t make that mistake.

For this customer, after listening to the many sound clips, the Meisterschaft solution was the right selection.  Enhanced w the upgraded black tips as well, this was a great choice.  Fit, fitment, style, looks, sound….perfect.

One of our objectives when we lay out a full project view…and we do this for all customers, we want to provide a complete “master plan” view of what the car could be, and then allow the customer to select and pick & choose the elements most important to them, and that also fit their budget.  So, to tie all the pieces all together, the look has to say the same thing…that this project ties together.  We will determine what the base color to be enhanced or built off is, and then add the enhancements to that.

One of the first elements here…w the base color being the main car color, but the secondary colors were going to be black, carbon, and the accent color of red, was the trim.  We could not do w the chrome trim then on the outside of the car.  Rather than replace, we just blacked out all the trim.  We have done this hundreds of times, and know the right material / vinyl that will last.

Original Side Chrome Trim

Updated, Black Side Trim


Probably the most significant element for a car in terms of style are the wheels…no question, they need to change.  There are three budget catagories….cast wheels, flow formed wheels, and forged. There is a drastic price difference in each of those catagories.  Cast wheels – thousands of styles, but heavy, not artistic, and don’t do much to enhance the look of the car.  Flow Formed / Flow Forged – this is the newest catagory, and there are more and more options every day (see the new versions from Vorsteiner and HRE as an example).  These are nearly as light as forged, and offer great styles, and at a fraction of the cost of the forged wheels.  Forged wheels are the ultimate…strong, light, and as artistic as you can imagine.

For this customer, we went w the Vorsteiner Flow Forged wheels…not only due to the look, but also the color option to match the project color scheme.  With the new wheels, we added the new Michelin Pilot 4S, and they are just as good as all the reviews said…they hold like nothing else, don’t make any noise, ride comfortably…what’s not to like.  Even the price is better now.

BEFORE – OEM Wheels                      AFTER – Vorsteiner FF Wheels

There is always more to do, and more to come….look for more updates again.

BRracing – producing JOY for our customers.  How about you?