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straightSixer 09-11-2010 08:44 PM

E30 - Transmission and bumper swap?
So the time has finally come for me to do something with my car. I have a 1988 325 Automatic.

Step one of the plan (if feasible) is to swap the diving board bumpers for the plastics found on the '89+ cars. I have read that this is more or less plug and play, but i'd rather hear it from you guys. Can I do that?

Step two (now this is where things get hairy) is to swap the slushbox for the good ol' Getrag. Now I myself have fairly limited mechanical experience, but my friend and her entire family are all gung-ho shade-tree (and professional) mechanics. How much is involved with the process? do I have to replace the ECU as well? Am I going to be in over my head?

Those are the majors. If they are relatively doable I'll continue with the full H&R/Bilstein suspension set from Turner

And a chip from Turner

As well as a new set of 15'' D-force wheels from Bav-Auto. Anyone running these or know if they're any good? they look like a pretty decent set of wheels.

I have a budget of about 3-4 grand.

Any input on this would be greatly appreciated, thanks guys!

Billwill 09-12-2010 01:10 AM

Look at the sticky above..."E30 resource thread"...this topic is covered.
I have seen a more detailed description of this process on my local SA if you feel like going there! I am not sure if there is a differance in the procedures between "chrome bumper" models like you have and the newer "plastic bumper" model though.
You should not need a new ECU.

straightSixer 09-13-2010 07:15 PM

Thanks for the info, though the link doesn't seem to work for me.

lordofthewaters 09-13-2010 07:30 PM

Step 1. Yes with your 88 it's pretty much PnP, you'll need the bumpers all 4 shocks for the plastic bumpers and the connectors for the turn signals in the plastic bumpers. Easy peasey.

Step 2. Here's a good start to tell you what you need.

Billwill 09-14-2010 03:31 AM

Sorry, the correct link for the SA site is
There is a very detailed report there in a sticky on how to do the manual gearbox swap.

straightSixer 09-19-2010 12:43 AM

Thanks for the info guys! My trans bit the dust the other night anyway so the swap is proceeding ASAP.

amigo 09-11-2012 09:01 PM

1988 325e dead automatic transmission
I need ideas about replacing, buying, remanufactured, pull your part, junk yards for my 1988 325 e automatic transmission

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