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Nate's E46 M3
17-04-2019, 02:13 PM
Post: #1
Newspaper Nate's E46 M3
BMW E46 M3 SMG











The E46 M3, first introduced in October 2000, appeared worldwide with the new 3.2 L S54 M-tuned engine. It was only available in coupe and convertible bodies because the saloon version was discontinued.
The E46 M3 was offered with a standard 6-speed Getrag transmission, but optionally came with the SMG drivelogic transmission (also known as the SMG II). This is the standard 6-speed Getrag transmission with an electrohydraulically actuated clutch (no clutch pedal). Shifts made via the SMG gear knob or the steering wheel mounted paddle shifters. The engine redlines at 8000 rpm. As with most M engines, the S54 again had six independent throttle bodies and this time electronically operated throttles (drive-by-wire throttle with no cable). In 2009, Road and Track magazine announced the 2006 M3 with the SMG transmission as their favourite sports car of all time. Many people view the SMG concept as a failure. This is debatable as it requires the driver to learn new methods of feeling the clutch position in order to gain the maximum performance out of the SMG transmission…you could say it’s like developing a different type of driving intuition.

Upon taking ownership of the vehicle, the previous owner advised me that an oil service was recently carried out, but I felt it best to stick to my original ritual of purchasing a used vehicle and so an oil service would be on top of the list.
Service Items and their purposes:

• 10w60 Liqui Moly: It offers the highest available protection for the BMW S54 motor in terms of oil.
• An OEM BMW oil filter kit: One may ask, “why OEM, it’s just a filter?” but then again let’s look at this from a BMW company point of view. If they took the time to develop a specific oil filter, it must offer a higher level of performance compared to the regular 3 series.
• An OEM BMW fuel filter: The same goes for the fuel filter with regards to an OEM part as BMW would not take the time to stock this fuel filter as opposed to using the existing 3 series filter. The cost of having this stocked in every country available to every BMW dealership across the world for this specific model must mean that it is required. So to maintain top performance, BMW OEM it is.
• Liqui Moly Ceratec: If you have a look at the picture below, you will see a thin black and gray box, this is the Ceratec product. This oil additive adds an extra layer of protection on the inner parts of the engine.





Aftermarket oil filter removed.





BMW OEM Fuel filter date record


Rear Spoiler Repair

The rear spoiler was extremely lose on the driver’s side. The spoiler was removed and the remaining glue was cleaned off. Menzerna’s polish polishing compound came in handy to clean the paint surface on the boot lid. I did this to make sure the adhesive has a good clean area to stick to. HD threaded 2 sided type was used to correctly secure the spoiler to the boot lid. Everything lined up and was taped down for a proper bond.


Interior Pillar repair

The interior pillars really hit a nerve. Silver on black is such a clean look yet here it is… Sagging material at every corner. The previous owner pointed out that the A pillar line SRS airbag strip that over time just could not hold on. The strip of material was completely off. I advised the previous owner to keep the material safely aside. Pillar removed and a new discovery is made. It seems that someone with limited skills attempted to repair the panels. I pulled the material up to the point where the factory glue had a good bond. Wurth spray adhesive came in to solve the problem. Very carefully, the material was glued over the panel taking note to keep the proper orientation.









The finished product




NAV CD issue

Every time the vehicle was unlocked the NAV system powered up but the BMW maps CD would often eject and after a few seconds the CD drive will reclaim the CD. When trying to eject the CD manually the drive refuses to spit it out. So I removed the drive and discovered that it was previously repaired in 2010 by Combined Electrical Services. I assumed that it was for the same issue.
I removed the drive tray and carefully removed the CD. The drive was reassembled and I saw this as an opportunity to check the firmware version.
The firmware was updated from SW 3-1/50 to SW 3-1/63 which is the latest version available for the MK3 BMW NAV.
After testing all is working well.







SMG hydraulic fluid replacement

The fear of the notorious SMG cog light lead me to check the hydraulic fluid.
Just replaced the reservoir fluid for some peace of mind. After seeing the difference in colour I felt better about it.





Fuel Pump

So the car had an intermitted starting issue and this was one of the things the previous owner kindly highlighted. I knew it needed to be addressed, as it seemed progressive. After a bit of troubleshooting I narrowed it down to the fuel pump.
Fuel pump failure seems to be a common problem with higher mileage e46 M3’s but with the current mileage on this car the pump should still in working order. This is most likely due to some form of premature wear. I’m guessing it was linked to conservative fuel fill ups. From my experience its best to maintain the fuel level above the half way mark. This is allows the fuel to absorb the heat from the pump and distribute it to the tank.
After searching around for a replacement the local aftermarket solutions seemed a bit generically based to the whole e46 platform. BMW used a different pump for a reason. The S54 motor requires a high pressure pump to accommodate performance requirements. I found a place that stocked Quantum performance fuel pumps. These come with a lifetime warranty and the specs match the OEM pump rating. The pump also has a built in check valve and has the capability of running E85. So overall it supersedes the BMW OEM pump.






Diff Oil Change
The old “BMW Lifetime” oil was drained and was replaced with new LSD oil.


Diagnostic check
15/04/17 14:22 – Radio – 1 Error 0 – Energy Saving Mode Active
15/04/17 14:23 – Steering wheel angle – Error 9 - ASC2
Error 16 – Watchdog
Errors cleared and rechecked. The errors are non-recurring


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The following 7 users Like NathzZ's post:
444YYY, danieltau, F21GP, Iry-gp, johndoe, PandaMan, Peter@AEW
17-04-2019, 02:25 PM
Post: #2
RE: Nate's E46 M3
Lovely repairs and maintaining going on here. Why not just get a new headunit though, that one looks like it has damaged pixels and of course, it's very dated by now?

But a very nice writeup Bluebiggrin

Bravo

Previously owned cars:
2003 Alfa Romeo 147 T-Spark (Navy blue and beige interior)
2006 Alfa Romeo 147 JTD 16v (Silver and beige interior)
Current:
2007 BMW Z4M Coupe (Silbergrau and Black Leather)
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17-04-2019, 02:34 PM
Post: #3
RE: Nate's E46 M3
Nice detailed post, thanks for sharing.. Thumbs

What are your plans for the vehicle moving forward?

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17-04-2019, 02:59 PM
Post: #4
RE: Nate's E46 M3
oooh this is yummy.
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17-04-2019, 03:03 PM
Post: #5
RE: Nate's E46 M3
KLAS!

330d E90 LCI DP & SW
2.0d F25 X3 - Hers

320d E90 LCI - Ex
328i E46 - Ex

Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn
#NoLivesMatter

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17-04-2019, 04:02 PM
Post: #6
RE: Nate's E46 M3
attention to details ThumbsThumbs
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18-04-2019, 01:09 PM
Post: #7
RE: Nate's E46 M3
(17-04-2019 02:25 PM)TBP88 Wrote:  Lovely repairs and maintaining going on here. Why not just get a new headunit though, that one looks like it has damaged pixels and of course, it's very dated by now?

But a very nice writeup Bluebiggrin

Bravo

I don't really like the look of the aftermarket headunits. The dimensions/layout of the buttons looks a bit wired.

Honestly, I don't drive the car often but when I do I prefer to listen to the car. The Raspy sound of the exhaust with ITB's on an IL6 is an orchestra on its own.
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18-04-2019, 01:37 PM
Post: #8
RE: Nate's E46 M3
Ah man awesome post, and like how you really taking care of this car!

In garage
01 BMW E46 330i 5-speed manual
95 Nissan 1400 bakkie
03 BMW E46 318i N42 Manual Sold
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18-04-2019, 02:28 PM
Post: #9
RE: Nate's E46 M3
Awesome ! Will be following this thread Praise

///M POWER - Yes, money can't buy happiness, But it's more comfortably to cry in a BMW than to cry on a bicycle.
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18-04-2019, 02:29 PM
Post: #10
RE: Nate's E46 M3
why is the oil grade different to what our 330's use...we're 15w40 i think
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18-04-2019, 02:39 PM
Post: #11
RE: Nate's E46 M3
Kudos for keeping this classic in good health...
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18-04-2019, 02:49 PM
Post: #12
RE: Nate's E46 M3
(18-04-2019 01:09 PM)NathzZ Wrote:  Honestly, I don't drive the car often but when I do I prefer to listen to the car. The Raspy sound of the exhaust with ITB's on an IL6 is an orchestra on its own.

This is what it's all about!

Stunner of a car bud.
I hope to own one of these in some form one of these fine days too!

Inlove

EX:
e30 320i 2.9l stroker Astral Silver
e36 M3 Avus Blue
e34 M5 Calypso Red
e82 125i Space Grey
e82 135i Alpine White
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18-04-2019, 05:03 PM
Post: #13
RE: Nate's E46 M3
Nathan nice work

That diff oil was 75w140 LS oil from agents and I did it at about 165Ks so by no stretch old.

Did you use the friction modifier oil at R100 per 100mL?

When you get around to it a Nav disc would be most welcome and I shall even give you a man hug provided I have a step ladder handy.

The truth is incontrovertible, malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is. ~ Winston Churchill
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19-04-2019, 09:40 AM
Post: #14
RE: Nate's E46 M3
Nicely done

Car is looking super clean.

Current:
Daily: 2011 Chev Corsa Ute 1.7Dti Sport
Weekend: 2004 BMW e46 M3
Hers: 2014 BMW F30 330d M Sport

Ex:
2013 BMW F30 320i
2012 VW Golf 6 GTI
2010 BMW E90 320i M Sport
2007 VW Polo GTI
2005 BMW E46 318i M Sport
1994 VW Golf CTI
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19-04-2019, 12:59 PM
Post: #15
RE: Nate's E46 M3
(18-04-2019 02:29 PM)Tjoppies Wrote:  why is the oil grade different to what our 330's use...we're 15w40 i think

Different motor altogether.

Current:
2014 320i F30 - M-Sport (Mrs)
2012 3.0d F25 - M-Sport (Family Wagon)
2005 325ci E46 - M-Sport (Mr)
2003 330ci E46 - Weekend (Mr)

Previous BMWs:
2012 328i F30 - Powerful racy motor
2012 320i E90 - Solid built, disappointing performance
2010 3.0d E70 - Versatile car, strong diesel motor
2004 320i E46 - Built like a tank, superb motor
2003 320i E46 - Money pit, lemon of note
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19-04-2019, 03:34 PM
Post: #16
RE: Nate's E46 M3
Nice write up. Nice car. OEM for the win!
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