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Thread: E90 roof rack mounted on E46 (DIY)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Raleigh, NC

    E90 roof rack mounted on E46 (DIY)

    Personally I don't care for the look of the e46 oem roof rack feet. And the whisp bars are much more than I care to spend.

    I was able to locate an E90 rack on Craigslist for 65.00 so I figured I'd give it a shot.

    I am in no way the first person to mount a set of E90 racks on an E46. However when I searched the fitment I found most users were removing the doors from the roof rails to get the proper fitment.

    Instead of removing the mounting doors. I decided to cut into the rack feet to get clearance.

    Time: roughly an hr.

    Things needed:

    1)OEM E90 roof rack and the safety torx tool and extra bolt provided with it.
    2)Round file or drill bit
    3)Rotary tool with plastic cutting wheel. (dremmel works great)

    First open the doors and chase the holes for the mounting with the extra bolt, these are usually coated with paint and this step just makes for fitting the rack easier

    Install the protective plastic adhesive pieces if provided with the rack. You will need to trim the bridges to get these in and have the rack fit later. If the protective pieces aren't available (because it's used) don't sweat it.

    Removed the feet from the rack with the provided tool. Line each one up to see where you need to trim/cut the plastic over the feet.

    I chose to make mine slightly over sized so not to risk binding up the door when taking on and off.

    All the feet were cut on the corner closest to the center of the car. I don't imagine this will differ for anyone else.

    At this point clean up he plastic area that was cut, a small file set works great.

    The rear fits without modification to the mounting in the rail.

    The front requires the mounting slots to be extended by 1/4"+/- toward the center. The bottom slot must be extended as well. I used an air saw with a round file attachment. I imagine a drill and properly sized bit will work with a little more time.

    Now reattach the feet and mount the rack! Don't forget you have to trim the bridges in the mounting pad on the car. .


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    San Francisco, CA
    Nice hack!

    I love that BMW dealerships look the same. Reminds me of when I worked at a dealership. The brick and the grey walls look so eeriely similar.

    But back to the topic, I like that idea!

  3. #3
    Thanks for sharing

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    2006 Coupe | Black Sapphire Metallic | Natural Brown | Gruppe M Intake | Corsa TSE3 | Michelin PSS on Apex ARC-8 | Koni Yellows |

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1970
    Southern California
    Def nice werk!
    Randeaux/Rando/John/jr - '06 Cic ZHP; Southern California
    "ZHP or not, I still like you"

    ZHP Performance Package, Cold Weather Package, Leather, Jet Black/Black/BlackCube, NAV
    ESS Stage 1 Twin Screw Supercharger, Sprint Booster, BMW Perf Intake, Magnaflow Exhaust, Dinan TB & STEP S/W, Ground Control Coilovers, UCC Sway Bars, Apex EC-7 18x8.5 ET38
    Dynavin D99+, Hardwire V1 (w/V1 Connection), BSW Stage 1 Speakers, Kicker Amp/Subwoofer
    BMW Performance Strut Brace, Orion V2 Angel Eyes, No-holes License Plate, SMG Paddle Shift Mod, Besian VANOS, Gold DISA, Fan Delete, M3 Side Mirrors
    Note: Actual car no longer resembles signature picture

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