Car is paid off - May 6, 2016
I've been talking about doing my ///M project thread for quite some time now and have finally written it using my ZHP project as the inspiration so here goes…
I got my second BMW and car that I realized I could easily obtain for my "realistic dream car", this 2004 TiAg ///M3, in April 2009. It started out by someone I knew in Connecticut asking me to test drive a 330cic since I was going to be in Newport so I agreed. I stopped by BMW of Newport where the car was supposed to be and asked them if they had this car and was told that the car had already sold. I then spotted my future ///M in the back lot sitting all by itself and impulsively asked the sales rep if I could test drive the ///M before reason could take over. He agreed and off I went… Coming from my 323i I was immediately impressed by everything about this car…all the little details and performance… this car nailed it for me with exception of the interior color - Grey. I then thanked the sales person and left.
Several days later I decided to stop by again to see if I could test drive the ///M again….yes, the power bug was biting on me real hard…got my speed/power fix and then left again. This time the same sales person asked me if I was interested in purchasing the car and I told him I was not looking to buy a second BMW. Anyway I ended up taking my ///M out for a third test drive and knew that I had to have this car….in the process, I violated everything I knew about buying a used BMW….no pre-purchase inspection. When I talked to the same sales person about purchasing the ///M he looked at my 323i and I told him I wasn't going to be trading in my 323i, that the ///M would be another acquisition in addition to my 323i. He looked surprised and I ended up buying the ///M. What clinched the deal was that the dealership added a 5-year wheel and tire warranty and with the wonderful roads here in New England, it made sense to have this for the ///M.
So here I am, the third owner of my dream car which retailed for $56,195.00 brand new. I got the car for under 50% of the original value with a CPO warranty and was a happy camper… Being a used car, there were several issues that I did not care for and knew that there will be many projects in the future before I am truly happy with my ///M. Like my ZHP project thread here are a few pics of the ///M after I had purchased it in 2009.
The ///M at the time of purchase had the following:
2004 BMW ///M3 - build date October 2003
6-Speed Manual Transmission
TiAg / Grey Nappa Leather interior
LCM s/w ver 3.6
Cold Weather Package
Brushed Aluminum interior trim
Rain sensor / Auto headlight
Harman / Kardon premium sound
18" Style 67 wheels
Cost during initial purchase: $56,195.00
My purchase price: $25,720.00
Lots of potential for my next project car!
The car did not have any maintenance history associated with it, however, when I informed the service manager that I was purchasing the ///M, I gave them the VIN and they gave the car a thorough look over and did the research to determine the car's maintenance history. Luckily for me, the ///M has been dealer serviced it's entire life and was assured that I was purchasing a car with a very good maintenance history. I was much more relieved when I heard this and felt relatively at ease with my purchase…
Mod list for my ///M as of April 24, 2017:
- OEM Black Interior Retrofit (dash, front and rear seats, rear deck, and carpeting)
- OEM ///M Black front seats w/ full Lumbar Support & Memory
- OEM CSL Interior Door Panels
- OEM CSL Door Handles
- OEM CSL Center Console
- OEM CSL Bootlid
- OEM BMW Performance Short Shift Kit
- BMW Performance Carbon Fiber Strut Brace
- OEM BMW Factory alarm retrofit
- OEM BMW TCU 13th Gen upgrade/retrofit
- OEM LCM s/w vers 4.5 coded/installed; one touch-triple blink enabled
- OEM Oval rear view auto-dim mirror
- OEM F10 ///M5 lit shift knob retrofit
- ///M oil cap
- OEM E92 LED rear license plate lights
- OEM BMW First Aid Kit
- OEM BMW Windshield @ 150,000 mi
- OEM BMW ALU TECH interior trim - in use
- OEM BMW Titan Shadow interior trim - spares
- BMW Euro cross-drilled rotors
- BMW Homelink Module
- X5 LED Fog Light retrofit (High Power 20W CREE LED 6000k lighting)
- ZKW lens swap for my headlight projectors -- OE Bosch lens removed
- Brembo GT BBKs 6-pot yellow calipers front and 4-pot yellow calipers rear
- IAT Relocation
- ///M oil cap
- G.A.S. BMW 1.2 Bar Coolant Cap (Black)
- CNC'd Oil Filter Cap from Max @ M3Forum.net
- Billet aluminum dip stick
- Sprint Booster
- Tekarbon 1x1 Carbon Fiber CSL rear diffuser
- 365Autosports one-piece CSL 1x1 carbon fiber lip spoiler (ICONZ style) - also have a spare set
- BC Racing "BR series" coilovers
- Authentic Gruppe M Carbon Kevlar CAI
- Afe smooth Intake elbow
- UltraGauge OBDII Gauge
- Intravee II integration
- BMW SIRIUS Satellite module retrofit
- 19" BBS CH wheels 19X8.5 ET35 (CH14) and 19X10 ET20 (CH17) w/ Hankook Ventus V12 Evo2 245 35 R19/275 30 R19
- ///M aluminum pedals
- TiAg Color matched corner reflectors
- White LED side markers
- CDV delete
- Monochrome ///M badges (on engine cover, trunk badge, side grill badge)
- Monochrome BMW Roundels (TiAg/White)
- Valentine V1 hardwire
- Eurosport Design Stainless Steel double-walled exhaust tips
- HID 6000k lighting (D2S)
- Wheel stud conversion (75mm studs)
- Brake Force Display (BFD) Stage 3 coded in
- Stereo upgrade from stock HK - Rockford Fosgate speakers/amp & Alpine speakers/QuartMB 1000 amp subwoofer - Thanks Kyle!!!
- Rear window switch mod to allow one-touch close feature - thanks Kyle!!!
- Smoked side markers - thanks Kyle!!!
- Rear fenders rolled
- Carbon Fiber e-Brake handle - thanks Ryan!!!
Current mileage: 174,979
Future mods / maintenance...
- Stealth One Valentine One/Navi Display Interface
- UUC Evo3 SSK install (2017 season)
- OEM Euro M3 side mirror w/ auto-fold capability
- OEM CSL headers and section 1 (eventually)
- Anti-Laser AL G9 (eventually)
- Euro no sunroof headliner
- Challenge Carbon Fiber 1x1 CSL roof panel retrofit (roof panel and roof bow purchased - I'll eventually get around to installing this)
- Original bootlid
- OE front and side chrome grills
- Center front license plate holder
- Front yellow corner reflectors
- OE SOS Rear View Auto-Dim Mirror
- Black center console arm rest (transferred to my ZHP)
- Entire grey interior
- OE ///M Strut Brace
- OE "Broomstick" shift knob
- Scorza Carbon Fiber CSL Center Console - deleted passed on to Gary
- OEM BMW 6-disc CD changer/HK Amp & Speakers
- BOSCH AL headlight lens
- Strassentech style front lip
- OE 4th Gen TCU Module
- OE 18 inch wheels
- 35% window tint (reluctantly)
- ARC 8 18" hyperblack wheels w/ Hankook Ventus V12s 245/275s (summer ///M wheels) 18X9.5 ET22 and 18x10.5 ET27
- OE brake calipers and Performance rotors
On to the list of mods by pics
One of the first mods I did was to get laminate film to cover my headlights, corner lights, and tails…and my color matched corner reflectors (the yellow had to go)
I also got rid of he hideous front license plate bracket in favor of the Skene designs custom license plate bracket.
Next came the Hamann fog light covers (you can see the Skene designs license plate bracket in this pic)
Somewhere in-between during a trip down to Manassas, VA… I decided to tint my windows and had it done there.
Then my friend Anthony told me that blacked out grills/side grills would really have my car pop out….glad I listened to him!
While I blacked out the grills, I managed to get a set of monochrome ///M3 badges The ARC-8s in this pic came from my friend Brian
When I used to have VMR VB3 CSL reps in hyper blacks mounted on my M3...
The Strassentech Style front lip to clean up the front end...
Test fitting the lip
Next came the double-walled tail pipe tips since I am okay with the stock exhaust for the time being…
I had taken off the dark smoke laminate film and was in the process of getting something just a little lighter...
By the summer of 2010 I had sold the 323i and was left with my ///M as my only driver so I chose to drive my ///M full-time during it's only winter driven season….it was a blast but I'll never do that again…..
Before the winter I was at a point where I had to upgrade my OE suspension as it was tired so I, at several forum members recommendations, opted to install BC Racing "BR-series" coilovers. Since several Boston area members were running this on their ///M's I felt that they were more than good enough to use for daily/street driving. So far after two years, I have to say that I'm very pleased with them. I would use these again and highly recommend them
Had the good guys at Kaizen Tuning perform my suspension mods….they are awesome folks to work with!
4-wheel alignment after the install
Didn't care too much for all the wonderful salt and sand the ///M was subjected to (first and only winter season I ever drove my M3 in)
That following spring (2011) I had my second Inspection II coming up so I chose to have my VANOS inspected and VANOS bolts replaced with the new updated bolts.
I was impressed by the relative condition of my exhaust cam sprocket and pump and opted to keep them in place
The bolts were all intact and secure when my mechanic took them out and replaced them with the new updated bolts. Locktite was used and then after the car was put back together I told my mechanic to drive my ///M like he stole it for the awesome work he did….needless to say he had a blast…
While the ///M was at the dealer I had my mechanic delete the CDV and also install my BMW Performance SSK. Looking back at this I could have easily done this and saved money….I know…..
Also got a lit ZHP shift knob from a forum member at M3Forum.net…..the best lit knob you can find in my opinion…glad to have this
It was also time to replace my OE boot lid with something more aggressive so I opted for the carbon fiber CSL boot lid which is shown below
This pic shows the Scorza CSL bootlid I used to have on my M3... bootlid now sold to Sean P. in Cali.
I also slapped on the CSL diffuser as well
Then in May of 2012 I picked up my new baby…a 2003 ZHP to share the garage with the ///M. The ///M had a family again!
Now I had to share mod duties between both cars….for the past year, most of the mod duties have been going to my ZHP as it will assume 100% of the daily driving duties as well as winter driving…I had lots of TLC to put back into my new baby and it shows…
I then changed out my interior trim with a product from AutoCarbon in Germany……a carbon fiber interior trim kit.
The black OEM door panels came shortly after the trim kit and then followed by my black nappa leather seats and head rests…
The next mod for the ///M arrived in the form of a carbon fiber CSL center console
There's more to add but I wanted to get this out first so that I can start to build on what I have already done.