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Thread: Charlie's ///M Project Thread

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Charlie's ///M Project Thread

    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
    Navigation
    BMW Assist
    Brushed Aluminum interior trim
    Premium Package
    Rain sensor / Auto headlight
    Harman / Kardon premium sound
    18" Style 67 wheels
    74,140 miles

    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: (thanks to Mike Miggs of Status Gruppe Tuning)
    - OEM CSL Door Handles: (thanks to Mike Miggs of Status Gruppe Tuning)
    - OEM CSL Center Console: (thanks to Brendan (Duck360198) from M3Forum for this kit)
    - OEM CSL Bootlid: (thanks to Donovan (M3Freak) from M3Forum)
    - 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 (a huge thanks to Tony (tnhl1969) for this)
    - ///M oil cap
    - OEM E92 LED rear license plate lights: (thanks to Brian (Busabos77) from M3Forum)
    - OEM BMW First Aid Kit (thanks to Stuart (the BMW whisperer) for this)
    - OEM BMW Windshield @ 150,000 mi
    - OEM BMW ALU TECH interior trim - in use
    - OEM BMW Titan Shadow interior trim - spares: (thanks to Mike Miggs of Status Gruppe Tuning)
    - 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: (thanks to Brendan (Duck360198) from M3Forum for this kit)
    - Brembo 2-piece rotors as part of the Brembo GT Big Brake Kit
    - IAT Relocation: (thanks to Gary (Wolfn8tr) for this)
    - ///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: (thanks to Dario (Avetiso) for this)
    - 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
    - BC front lowering coilover springs 12k 120mm
    - Authentic Gruppe M Carbon Kevlar CAI
    - Afe smooth Intake elbow
    - UltraGauge OBDII Gauge: (thanks to Gary (wolfn8tr) for bringing this to my attention)
    - Intravee II integration
    - BMW SIRIUS Satellite module retrofit
    - 19" BBS CH wheels 19X8.5 ET35 (CH004) and 19X10 ET20 (CH017) w/ Hankook Ventus V12 Evo 245 35 R19/Evo2 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: (a very huge thanks to Botond and Tony for taking care of my BMW programming needs)
    - 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: 175,085


    Future mods / maintenance...

    - Stealth One Valentine One/Navi Display Interface: (donated by Rando)
    - 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
    - VIS Racing carbon fiber XTS Style hood
    - Challenge Carbon Fiber 1x1 CSL roof panel retrofit (roof panel and roof bow purchased - I'll eventually get around to installing this)


    Deleted:
    - Original bootlid
    - OE front and side chrome grills
    - BMW Euro cross-drilled rotors: rear set being donated to my ZHP
    - 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 however a wonderful State Trooper here at the local barracks had something to say about it and I had to remove it after having it on for 4 years... Funny how other Troopers told me not to worry about it since it was not too dark... anyway rather than go thru more BS from this one trooper in particular I just removed it until the day comes when I move to a state that does allow window tint. This was my M3 while I had 35% window tint...



    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...


    Another detail-related accent I chose for my M3 was to insert TiAg internal headlight trim pieces taken from a 330ci. They add just enough to make my ///M different from the others


    Next came the double-walled tail pipe tips since I am okay with the stock exhaust for the time being…


    I had installed the BMW Performance SSK and a lit F10 shift knob (courtesy of Tony - tnhl1969)… easily 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 from Scorza which is shown below



    This Scorza CSL Rep bootlid was a very nice bootlid which eventually got sold to Sean so I could get an OEM CSL bootlid (shown in the first pic). The pic below is with my OEM CSL bootlid.




    The car looks so right with the CSL bootlid installed. Really changes the look of the car!

    Then in May of 2012 I picked up a much needed daily driver…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…

    The interior with grey seats and dash before I removed them...


    Next was to change out my complete interior as I really hated the all grey color.....

    I mean everything inside that was that puke grey color went out!!


    In with the black carpeting...


    Now the interior is starting to look proper for my tastes....


    Added the OEM CSL door panels.... those are very hard to source and they are expensive!!!

    Last edited by cakM3; 10-11-2017 at 05:12 PM.
    2008 GT Silver 997.1tt.......................2004 TiAg ///M.........................2003 Imola ZHP

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Recent updates to the ///M:

    BMW Performance Carbon Fiber Strut Brace

    The first group shows the strut bar mounted but I haven't modded the battery terminal yet.
    These pics were taken with my ultra-high quality iPhone







    The next group shows the strut bar mounted with the battery terminal modded.
    These pics were taken with my Nikon DSLR

    My hands were shaking on the first pic since I was still getting used to the chilly weather yesterday morning.





    I used liquid electrical tape to cover the exposed metal....as you can see it seemed to do the job fairly well



    a few pics of the strut tower top where I have access to my coil over adjustments...


    driver's side

    passenger's side


    I took my ///M to work this morning and enjoyed the drive....checked the strut bar after parking my car and everything was A-OK!
    Last edited by cakM3; 04-12-2013 at 05:32 PM.
    2008 GT Silver 997.1tt.......................2004 TiAg ///M.........................2003 Imola ZHP

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    great car Charlie, I've been waiting for this thread

  4. #4
    Crestwood1001 Guest
    This thread is full of win


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Melbourne, FL
    Posts
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    Great start bud. I cant wait to have one of my own.

    Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk 2
    2005 IR ZHP Alcantara 6MT l Bimmian phone mount l Khoalty Angel Eye's l Khoalty Fog's l AFE Stage 1 Intake l AFE Dynamic Air Scoop's l CDV Delete
    Besian Sealed VANOS l Flat black Kidney Grills l Magnaflow Cat-Back

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Jupiter, FL
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    Subscribed!! Great pics so far! But why oh why did the ///M not get the facelift?!?!???


    Sent from my iPhone 4/4S hybrid on Tapatalk...
    Jon aka "Joop"
    2011 Lemans Blue Metallic/Bamboo Beige ///M3 2013 Alpine White/Chestnut X3///M Sport
    ...Past Love Affairs...
    2010 Silverstone Metallic/Black X5///M
    2003 Alpine White/Natural Brown 330i Dinan3 ZHP
    2014 Mineral White Metallic/Saddle Brown 328d
    2004 Alpine White/Natural Brown 330i ZHP
    2012 Alpine White/Oyster X3///M Sport

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Thanks guys! It's been a long time coming...I've been meaning to start this thread but have been keeping this thread sidelined because of other projects going on.

    Since some of my progress for the ///M have started creeping into my ZHP project's thread, I felt it was time to put this thread out

    A few very lucky friends (fellow mafia members) have had the opportunity to see and drive my beast but there are many who won't have this opportunity so the next best thing is to put this thread here for you to enjoy

    I feel very fortunate to own two very special, and well maintained BMWs BP has had the most "behind the wheel" time on my ///M, he can chime in

    @JP...I know you have been waiting patiently for this....I hope I don't disappoint

    @ Jon...the ///M did get a facelift but the changes/refreshes were not as noticeable as they were for non-///M's. Looking at the boot, facelift ///M's trunk handle extend out beyond the license plate indent, and they got the LED tails from the factory. There may be other updates but they are probably under the hood so to speak....the front end was kept because of the more aggressive look compared to the non-M "facelift" look but there will be those who disagree...

    Pre-facelift style - note early style tail lights as well...(trunk handle does not extend past license plate indent)


    Facelift style - w/ extended trunk handle and LED tails


    More to follow

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
    Last edited by cakM3; 10-01-2012 at 02:22 AM.
    2008 GT Silver 997.1tt.......................2004 TiAg ///M.........................2003 Imola ZHP

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    always nice to see the car that started it before the zhp! Awesome job Charlie!
    -Derek

    Project Thread <-- SOLD 8/22/17

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by derbo View Post
    always nice to see the car that started it before the zhp! Awesome job Charlie!
    Thanks Derek! I will do my best to detail my progress here!

    @ Devlin...can't wait to see your projects thread bud!


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
    2008 GT Silver 997.1tt.......................2004 TiAg ///M.........................2003 Imola ZHP

  10. #10
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    is that halogen AE? Deep down I don't like AE but something about 4000k AE appeals to me...
    -Derek

    Project Thread <-- SOLD 8/22/17

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