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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > Z Series > E36/7 Z3 (1996-2002)

E36/7 Z3 (1996-2002)
E36/7 Z3 Roadster, Z3 coupe, Z3 M Roadster and Z3 M Coupe talk with our gurus here.

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  #1  
Old 07-16-2008, 12:12 AM
slippytoad slippytoad is offline
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Location: Mountain View, CA
 
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Mein Auto: Nothing
Smile Z3M Roadster happiness

Just wanted to share with you all the joy I'm experiencing with my (new to me) Z3 M Roadster. It's a 2000 and I got it with only 16500 miles on the clock, which is crazy low. The car was immaculate, barely driven actually but I put a new set of PS2s on it anyway. At first I didn't dare drive it far but I've put on 2.5k miles in only a month (CA-1 I thank you!).

I don't know why I waited so long to buy one, I've always loved them. Actually I've coveted the Coupe for so long but I really wanted the top down again. Love the feel of the S52 engine, it's so gruff and bassy and it makes a satisfying throaty crackle on the overrun. Even though there are rattles all over the body and the chassis could be stiffer, somehow it works. And the smell of the old leather is something else.

I've owned a few cars in my years; I grew up in Holland, the UK and now the US. I've owned an original Mini (yay), a couple of Peugeots (urgh), a Vauxhall (pooh), a Passat (hum), a Miata (zoom) and recently an RX-8 (quirky) but the M Roadster is just in a different league. I'm beginning to understand what they mean when they talk about the soul of a machine.

Having fun, see you all out there. Cheers!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/6207944...7605002763560/

Last edited by slippytoad; 07-16-2008 at 12:13 AM. Reason: Added flickr link
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  #2  
Old 07-16-2008, 06:15 AM
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pseto pseto is offline
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Mein Auto: e92 M3 ZCP, M Roadster
very nice, i have the same exact car. the ironic part is i bought it recently from someone in Mountain View (had it shipped to MD). Maybe our cars are identical twins
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  #3  
Old 07-16-2008, 07:18 AM
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rjcoston rjcoston is offline
///M Practical
Location: Boise, ID
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 857
Mein Auto: 00 M Roadster
Nice car. With such low mileage, I recommend two modifications that could make a difference in the long run. First, consider having the rear subframe bushings replaced with the Ireland Engineering urethane bushings. Stiffens up the rear of the car, improves high speed handling, and may help to prevent or delay the possible onset of the differential mount bracing tearing away from the trunk floor. I recently replaced these bushings in my car and it is the best modification I have done so far. Search on this forum for information on this issue. Second, if your glovebox has not started to sag yet, this can be prevented by not storing anything heavy in the glovebox and by removing the metal bolster which is under the skin of the glovebox door. There is a lot of very useful information available on this forum. Welcome.
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  #4  
Old 07-16-2008, 07:19 AM
SUNZOUT SUNZOUT is offline
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Mein Auto: '00 M Roadster
If the car is stock get a Strut brace and install and set of Ireleand Engineering subframe bushings...You will think you have a new car for a 2nd time.
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  #5  
Old 07-16-2008, 07:23 AM
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rjcoston rjcoston is offline
///M Practical
Location: Boise, ID
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
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Mein Auto: 00 M Roadster
I agree about also getting a front strut brace.
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  #6  
Old 07-16-2008, 07:55 AM
slippytoad slippytoad is offline
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Thanks for the kind replies guys. Couple of questions then:

1. Which front strut brace is recommended? The Dinan one or another?
2. How much would it set me back to get the IE subframe bushings installed (parts + labour), roughly?

Cheers,

Nick.
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  #7  
Old 07-16-2008, 08:36 AM
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rjcoston rjcoston is offline
///M Practical
Location: Boise, ID
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 857
Mein Auto: 00 M Roadster
I really like the light weight alloy Strong Strut brace, but other good brands are Dinan and probably Mason or Racing Dynamics. The Ireland bushings are about $100 and I'm guessing that labor for installation by a shop would run another $300 to $400. Other forum members will probably have a more accurate figure. Step by step instructions are available if you want to do it yourself and you buy or rent a bushing puller, or you might be able to get in on group bushing install day with other enthusiasts in your area. DWM has done a really good write-up on installing the bushings.

http://www.rfdm.com/SubframeBushings/howto.html
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  #8  
Old 07-16-2008, 11:37 AM
SUNZOUT SUNZOUT is offline
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Location: Bataiva, IL
 
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Mein Auto: '00 M Roadster
bushings are $100 - expect $300 to $600 for shop to install.
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TC Kline S/A Coilovers | Sharked | Turner Slotted Rotors | Axxis Ultimate Pads | SS Front Strut | IE Subframe Bushings | IE Rear Toe/Camber Kit
Whalen Shift Machine | Stygar Clutch Pedal | CDV Delete | LeatherZ Armrest | Whalen seat bushings | Z3Solutions Windblocker | Shift Pin fix
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  #9  
Old 07-17-2008, 04:29 PM
slippytoad slippytoad is offline
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Location: Mountain View, CA
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjcoston View Post
I really like the light weight alloy Strong Strut brace, but other good brands are Dinan and probably Mason or Racing Dynamics. The Ireland bushings are about $100 and I'm guessing that labor for installation by a shop would run another $300 to $400. Other forum members will probably have a more accurate figure. Step by step instructions are available if you want to do it yourself and you buy or rent a bushing puller, or you might be able to get in on group bushing install day with other enthusiasts in your area. DWM has done a really good write-up on installing the bushings.

http://www.rfdm.com/SubframeBushings/howto.html
Quick question about the bushings. Doesn't the urethane make the ride very stiff and increase road noise? Do you guys track your cars or drive very aggressively? Just wondering. Cheers.
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  #10  
Old 07-17-2008, 07:56 PM
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rjcoston rjcoston is offline
///M Practical
Location: Boise, ID
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 857
Mein Auto: 00 M Roadster
I'm still running the stock shocks at 35K. Installing the bushings feels like I installed new shocks. It seems like I can barely hear the exhaust a little more. My car is driven strictly on the street and not all that aggressively.
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  #11  
Old 07-17-2008, 08:45 PM
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summereskimo summereskimo is offline
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Mein Auto: Modded E36/7&Stock E36/8M
Quote:
Originally Posted by slippytoad View Post
Thanks for the kind replies guys. Couple of questions then:

1. Which front strut brace is recommended? The Dinan one or another?
2. How much would it set me back to get the IE subframe bushings installed (parts + labour), roughly?

Cheers,

Nick.
If you want to keep the stock look, go with the Mason brace like I did. + no hinges




Link to the Ireland Subframe Bushings. Green bushings for street & red for track.
http://store.nexternal.com/shared/St...t=products.asp

Like others mentioned, it should cost around $400-600 to instal...unless you'd rather DYI.
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  #12  
Old 07-19-2008, 12:22 PM
reidconti reidconti is offline
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Mein Auto: Clownshoe,Miata,WeeStrom
Strut tower brace is a take-it-or-leave it kind of thing for me.

The IE subframe bushings are an absolute must. They will transform the car. No real negative consequences. I can very very occasionally hear a slight diff whine but even when I point it out, most people can't hear it. Likely you wouldn't notice at all on a roadster.
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  #13  
Old 07-19-2008, 01:55 PM
caseysc1 caseysc1 is offline
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Location: SC
 
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Mein Auto: 2005 Z4 2.5 and 2010 128i
Beautiful car. Congratulations!!

Not having owned a Z3 can't speak to the specifics, but there are quite a few here who have both a Z3 and Z4, and I'm sure you will hear from them!
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  #14  
Old 07-20-2008, 06:19 AM
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Pinecone Pinecone is offline
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Location: Maryland
 
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Mein Auto: M Roadster/M3
Strut brace CAN be felt. Nice addition. I also have the Strong Strut alloy.

BTW hinges don't make any difference, 1) the strut is under tension, 2) the strut/shock towers/subframe are a trapazoid, cannot flex at corners.
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  #15  
Old 09-28-2011, 03:42 PM
slippytoad slippytoad is offline
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Location: Mountain View, CA
 
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Mein Auto: Nothing
Just wanted to share with others browsing this board, I'm selling the Roadster because (a) I have 2 kids now and (b) I bought an M5

It has 39k miles now and is still in lovely condition - I took care of it. Selling for $16k in Palo Alto if anyone is interested. Craigslist ad here: http://sfbay.craigslist.org/pen/cto/2615393181.html and photos here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?...e7fa796&type=1
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