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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 03-27-2005, 03:57 PM
MichaelDanteP MichaelDanteP is offline
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Mein Auto: 330 Ci
Improving HP on 330 Ci ZSP

New to this site, but I'm just curious as to the best (meaning most hp per dollar) way to begin making my 330 Ci (zsp) faster. Would it be CAI or exhaust? Please let me know of experiences and brands in your suggestions. Also, if someone has done something with the chip (other than the very expensive DINAN), let me know if this voids warranties and also names of the chip or chip reprogrammer you've bought.

Thanks

Last edited by MichaelDanteP; 03-27-2005 at 03:59 PM. Reason: bad title
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  #2  
Old 03-27-2005, 04:29 PM
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MMME30W MMME30W is offline
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  #3  
Old 03-29-2005, 12:55 PM
MichaelDanteP MichaelDanteP is offline
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Mein Auto: 330 Ci
Thanks

for the links...still don't know which one to start with and which if any will void the warranty.

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  #4  
Old 03-29-2005, 01:11 PM
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Nick325xiT 5spd Nick325xiT 5spd is offline
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Technically, every single thign you do will void your warranty if the dealer can trace a failure to it.

That said, the only thing you can really do to get a significant bump in output is a rebuild of the engine. Most other things result in almost unnoticable bumps that mostly make your car louder.
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  #5  
Old 03-29-2005, 01:20 PM
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JST JST is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelDanteP
for the links...still don't know which one to start with and which if any will void the warranty.

Anything you do to the car, from an aftermarket standpoint, will void the warranty to the extent that it causes a problem. Theoretically, the burden is on the manufacturer to show a link between the aftermarket part and whatever problem you are experiencing in order to deny a warranty claim. In practice, dealers and manufacturers have a lot of leeway in denying warranty claims based on the most tenuous potential links between an aftermarket part and a problem. As a practical matter, if a warranty claim is denied, YOU have to hector the dealer and manufacturer to get that decision reversed, and YOU have to persuade the dealer and manufacturer that they should change their mind. You may ultimately be able, in court, to have an improper denial overturned, but dealers and BMW have a lot more time, money and expertise than you do to fight cases like that.

Having said all of that...

CAIs are, as a general matter, extremely unlikely to cause problems. Most CAIs can be quickly removed, if desired. Most CAIs probably do very little in terms of making your car faster, though they will likely make your car louder, which can make it seem faster (and, believe me, I'm not saying that's bad or wrong).

Frankly, the best bang for your buck in terms of boosting usable, around town performance is probably to change your stock final drive ratio. Going to a lower (higher numerically) final drive will increase your low end torque (at the wheels) and make your car more "punchy" in most driving. A 3.38 or 3.46 would provide a nice step in this direction, while still maintaining decent cruising RPM in 6th. This will cost some money, though, and may lead to greater warranty hassles than a CAI ever would.
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  #6  
Old 03-29-2005, 01:23 PM
MysticBlue MysticBlue is offline
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This is like stepping into a physics class a day before the final exam and asking your new classmates, "Hey guys, tell me everything I need to know to pass the test." It's not that simple. You need to spend some of your own time getting knowledgable, reading through this forum, using the search function, browsing other websites, etc. In other words, research. Read a little. Learn a little. Then, when you have specific questions about specific upgades, and after you have used the search function, then by all means, ask.
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Last edited by MysticBlue; 03-29-2005 at 01:54 PM.
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  #7  
Old 03-29-2005, 01:43 PM
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norihaga norihaga is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelDanteP
New to this site, but I'm just curious as to the best (meaning most hp per dollar) way to begin making my 330 Ci (zsp) faster. Would it be CAI or exhaust? Please let me know of experiences and brands in your suggestions. Also, if someone has done something with the chip (other than the very expensive DINAN), let me know if this voids warranties and also names of the chip or chip reprogrammer you've bought.

Thanks
Meaningful horsepower gains without serious expenditure and warranty-obliterating modifications are not to be had. Your 330 is no R34.

More to the point, since the 330 has a curb-weight of over 3200 pounds, you need to add a heck of a lot of horsepower to meaningfully affect the power to weight ratio. If you manage to get a peak gain of 5 hp and don't lose in area-under-curve, it still won't make a blind bit of difference to lap times or stop-watch acceleration figures.

As already suggested, shortening the final drive ratio would probably make the greatest real-world change in performance. However, it's clearly an open invitation to deny any and all warranty claims connected in any way with the transmission.

Pretty much the only warranty-safe way to improve pace would seem to me to be sticky tires, lighter rims, and possibly stripping out excess trim to save weight.
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  #8  
Old 03-29-2005, 02:21 PM
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wag-zhp wag-zhp is offline
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Quickest way for most drivers to make their car faster is to upgrade the driver. That means go to a performance oriented driving school. This is especially true for BMW cars, as they come from the factory in nearly optimal tune. There is very little that can be done for less than $1000, and even spending as much as $5000 will likely net only 20 - 40 hp. You really don't see huge hp gains until you start adding some kind of forced induction, N2O (Nitrous Oxide), and/or making major changes to the internal engine components.

Best bang for the buck:
1. Driver upgrades (classes, glasses, and smarts)
2. Remove anything heavy and unnecessary. (A. golf clubs, luggage, junk. B. spare tire, tool kit, never fill gas tank more than 1/2 full. C. rear seats, door trim, carpet, headliner, etc, ...)
3. Stickier tires.
4. Change rear end gears to a numerically higher range. (Maybe also add limited slip differential.)
5. Engine mods.
6. Remove anything heavy and unnecessary. (D. replace heavy 18" rims with light weight 16" or 17" rims and racing rubber, replace battery with light weight racing unit, replace glass with lexan, replace fuel tank with fuel cell, carbon fiber hood, roof, trunk and door panels, etc, ...)
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  #9  
Old 03-30-2005, 06:11 AM
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My vote is to keep the 330 stock and get a second car new or used and make it into a track car. Best of both worlds.
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  #10  
Old 03-30-2005, 06:39 AM
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If you are looking for something that you will notice in the seat of your pants when you press the loud pedal, I would consider installing an intake. Iniquity over at bimmerforums.com installed an aFe intake ($350) on his otherwise stock 330 w/ ZHP and gained 11 HP, and 10 lb-ft at the rear wheels. This alone is impressive, but on top of that if you look at his dyno chart you will see that he did not lose power at any RPM. This may not sound earth shattering to the layman, but anyone who has spent any amount of time studying before and after dyno charts will tell you that a real world gain of this nature from a $350 bolt-on is quite remarkable.

Here's the post/chart:
http://forums.bimmerforums.com/forum...6&postcount=14
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  #11  
Old 03-30-2005, 12:43 PM
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norihaga norihaga is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moderato
My vote is to keep the 330 stock and get a second car new or used and make it into a track car. Best of both worlds.
Even better, get a track bike and save a huge amount on initial outlay, tires and service costs. You also wouldn't need a flatbed to tow it...
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  #12  
Old 03-30-2005, 01:13 PM
MichaelDanteP MichaelDanteP is offline
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Thank you

Thanks for the helpful input to those that provided it. As for the less helpful, I have taken two Skip Barber driving courses and I have read a lot on this site. However, as you know if you've read it as well, there are many conflicting opinions. I think from what I've read, it's probably best to save the money that I would spend on CAIs, chip reprogrammers, Borla or whatever exhausts etc., and just buy an M3.

However, as I said, thanks people for those of you that were helpful and not trying to be sarcastic.

MDP
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