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E90/E92/E93 M3 (2008+)
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  #1  
Old 03-08-2012, 09:19 PM
Drifty Drifty is offline
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Mein Auto: Audi A4
Shopping for a combined Track Car + Daily Driver

Hello, I'm coming from a 2007 Audi A4 quattro MT6 with mods and half a dozen 2-day HPDEs, including a winter school. I feel like I'm ready to step up. I've never owned a BMW or RWD performance car, and I want both.

The purpose of my post is in search of some general advice. As my post implies, I'm looking for a track car that I can still use as a daily driver. I've come to the conclusion that the E92 M3 is the best fit within my means.

Some questions:
  • Does track use void the warranty? I've heard in at least one case it did.
  • Competition package, or should I just install some coilovers?
  • Is the BMW Performance Exhaust Limerock-approved? Has anyone gotten busted for it (i.e. if your state has exhaust laws)?
  • Do I need drive select, or can I achieve the same or better with a set of reasonable coilovers + chip?
  • Are there any other factory options you'd recommend for track use?
  • Is there any reason to prefer or avoid a certain year vs. the others?
  • Anything else I should know?


Thanks in advance,
Drifty


Last edited by Drifty; 03-09-2012 at 01:59 AM.
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  #2  
Old 03-09-2012, 04:11 AM
335i 335i is offline
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Mein Auto: '11 E90 AW M3/ '11 AW X5d
Hello, I'm coming from a 2007 Audi A4 quattro MT6 with mods and half a dozen 2-day HPDEs, including a winter school. I feel like I'm ready to step up. I've never owned a BMW or RWD performance car, and I want both.

The purpose of my post is in search of some general advice. As my post implies, I'm looking for a track car that I can still use as a daily driver. I've come to the conclusion that the E92 M3 is the best fit within my means.

Some questions:
  • Does track use void the warranty? I've heard in at least one case it did.
    Generally speaking, it will not, if the car is left stock. Start tinkering (engine mods, etc), and something breaks related to the mod, and you might have some explaining to do. Dinan mods are warranty friendly from what I've gathered.
  • Competition package, or should I just install some coilovers?
    Wheels alone are worth it IMO. Unless you want a suspension specifically for the track, I love EDC. Firm on the track, but plays nice in comfort mode for crappy roads and potholes.
  • Is the BMW Performance Exhaust Limerock-approved? Has anyone gotten busted for it (i.e. if your state has exhaust laws)?
  • Do I need drive select, or can I achieve the same or better with a set of reasonable coilovers + chip?
    Drive select? Not sure what you mean here. Explanation?
  • Are there any other factory options you'd recommend for track use?
    DCT is great for the track - but I find it less engaging for a daily driver. If I could have one of both (6MT and DCT) I would. For now, I like rowing gears.
  • Is there any reason to prefer or avoid a certain year vs. the others?
    New iDrive (if you get Navi) came out in MY2010 I believe. Hard drive based - controls are much more intuitive as well.
  • Anything else I should know?
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  #3  
Old 03-09-2012, 04:42 AM
dalekressin's Avatar
dalekressin dalekressin is offline
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Drifty,
I completely enjoy my M3.
Depending on what you really want and are willing to risk helps determine how to procede.
If you track your daily driver, a day most certainly will come where you suffer a wreck.
How will that affect you?

I have read a better option is getting a track only car and a seperate daily driver. You don't need 400+ hp to be a good track driver.

Also consider a lower cost option of a Cayman which has a lower pricepoint, is lighter and fits DD & track.
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  #4  
Old 03-09-2012, 03:48 PM
rdollie rdollie is offline
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New iDrive started with MY2009.

Drive Select is Audi's version of EDC (if I recall correctly both are sourced from Bosch.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by 335i View Post
Hello, I'm coming from a 2007 Audi A4 quattro MT6 with mods and half a dozen 2-day HPDEs, including a winter school. I feel like I'm ready to step up. I've never owned a BMW or RWD performance car, and I want both.

The purpose of my post is in search of some general advice. As my post implies, I'm looking for a track car that I can still use as a daily driver. I've come to the conclusion that the E92 M3 is the best fit within my means.

Some questions:
  • Does track use void the warranty? I've heard in at least one case it did.
    Generally speaking, it will not, if the car is left stock. Start tinkering (engine mods, etc), and something breaks related to the mod, and you might have some explaining to do. Dinan mods are warranty friendly from what I've gathered.
  • Competition package, or should I just install some coilovers?
    Wheels alone are worth it IMO. Unless you want a suspension specifically for the track, I love EDC. Firm on the track, but plays nice in comfort mode for crappy roads and potholes.
  • Is the BMW Performance Exhaust Limerock-approved? Has anyone gotten busted for it (i.e. if your state has exhaust laws)?
  • Do I need drive select, or can I achieve the same or better with a set of reasonable coilovers + chip?
    Drive select? Not sure what you mean here. Explanation?
  • Are there any other factory options you'd recommend for track use?
    DCT is great for the track - but I find it less engaging for a daily driver. If I could have one of both (6MT and DCT) I would. For now, I like rowing gears.
  • Is there any reason to prefer or avoid a certain year vs. the others?
    New iDrive (if you get Navi) came out in MY2010 I believe. Hard drive based - controls are much more intuitive as well.
  • Anything else I should know?
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  #5  
Old 03-09-2012, 07:38 PM
Drifty Drifty is offline
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Location: Boston
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 5
Mein Auto: Audi A4
Quote:
Originally Posted by dalekressin View Post
Drifty,
If you track your daily driver, a day most certainly will come where you suffer a wreck.
How will that affect you?
"Most certainly"? That's quite a statement! Does anyone/everyone agree with him? None of the Porsche GT3 owners I know have ever wrecked them, and I'm sure that's more of a handful than the E92 M3.

I'd never track anything I absolutely couldn't afford to wreck. One reason I'm probably buying used is to limit my financial exposure to such a loss.

I have considered the Cayman S, but I can't live with only a 2-seater and I don't want the hassle of 2 cars, as I have only one off-street parking spot.

Also, my A4 has 255 horsepower. With upgraded tires, wheels, brakes, and coilovers, it can hang pretty well with S4's on tracks with several slower corners. But Limerock is all about fast corners and I was really suffering for lack of power.

Plus, the M3 has that iconic status. If it's within reach, why not grab it? At this point, it's really not about whether I should do it, but more a matter of options, year, and how much I need to budget for mods.

Last edited by Drifty; 03-09-2012 at 07:55 PM.
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  #6  
Old 03-09-2012, 07:53 PM
Drifty Drifty is offline
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Thanks for the reply.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 335i View Post
Some questions:
  • Are there any other factory options you'd recommend for track use?
    DCT is great for the track - but I find it less engaging for a daily driver. If I could have one of both (6MT and DCT) I would. For now, I like rowing gears.
If I'm buying a car for fun, DCT is grounds for disqualification in my book!


Quote:
  • Is there any reason to prefer or avoid a certain year vs. the others?
    New iDrive (if you get Navi) came out in MY2010 I believe. Hard drive based - controls are much more intuitive as well.
I'm thinking strictly about reliability, performance, & mod-oriented differences. Things like suspension tweaks, oil consumption, black box, throttle cut under breaking, countermeasures to defeat mods, etc.

I don't plan on doing heavy mods, but I like to go in with my eyes open. In fact, a big reason I'm even looking at the M3 is because it should be more than enough in its stock form. I like the idea of having to buy only brakepads, rotors, and tires.

Last edited by Drifty; 03-09-2012 at 07:58 PM.
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  #7  
Old 03-10-2012, 01:58 AM
650 Ryder's Avatar
650 Ryder 650 Ryder is offline
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Location: Texas
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 756
Mein Auto: Dinan///M3 - Countryman S
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drifty View Post
Thanks for the reply.



If I'm buying a car for fun, DCT is grounds for disqualification in my book!




I'm thinking strictly about reliability, performance, & mod-oriented differences. Things like suspension tweaks, oil consumption, black box, throttle cut under breaking, countermeasures to defeat mods, etc.

I don't plan on doing heavy mods, but I like to go in with my eyes open. In fact, a big reason I'm even looking at the M3 is because it should be more than enough in its stock form. I like the idea of having to buy only brakepads, rotors, and tires.
First, the bold statement is the biggest crock of sh*t going (but I respect your opinion). OP, if you want the best of both worlds the M3 is a great double duty car. I daily my car and it gets track duty as well. The M3 is track ready out of the box. Now if you're a seasoned track guy then a few mods will put you right back at your level. If you plan to do any suspension mods find a non-EDC car. As for the competition package, the wheels are worth the coin as stated above. Plus the minor suspension drop and sport mapping are a nice touch. The only mods you may have to do are suspension (coilovers), BBK or at a minimum some SS brakelines, pads, and fluid. You may also want to get a set of 18's as track wheels (19" rubber get expensive ). And here's the good news, what other serious track car can you load you track gear in and head to the track? Fold you back seats down and 3 wheels will fit......throw the 4th in the truck with you torque wrench, small compressor and lunch . Bottom line, this car is the best Jekyll and Hyde on 4 wheels...............Phil
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2011.5 Dinan ///M3:
SSII DCT
Comp, Conv, Premium 2 Pkg
Heated Seats
Enhnd Prem Sound
BMW Edition Grills / Gills
BMW M Perf. Steering Wheel
BMW Carbon Fiber Perf. Spoiler
BMW Pedals
Dinan Exhaust
Dinan Mid Racing Exhaust (x-pipe)
Dinan Carbon Fiber Intake
Dinan Racing Middle Exhaust Software
Dinan DCT Tune
Dinan Pulley Kit
Dinan CH-R Wheels
Dinan Carbon Fiber Strut Tower Braces
IND M5 Scheme Mirror Caps
Arkym Front Lip
Carbon Front Reflectors
Lux H8 V3
Brembo 365mm BBK

Last edited by 650 Ryder; 03-10-2012 at 02:04 AM.
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  #8  
Old 03-10-2012, 11:55 AM
Drifty Drifty is offline
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Thanks for the informative reply!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 650 Ryder View Post
First, the bold statement is the biggest crock of sh*t going (but I respect your opinion).
I was just trying to say that the amount of enjoyment I get from driving stick puts it near the top of the list, so long as fun is a priority. I know I'm giving up a little on the track, and I'm quite alright with that. I'm not looking to win any races or break any records.

Quote:
If you plan to do any suspension mods find a non-EDC car.
Does EDC complicate suspension upgrades, or are you just saying that to avoid paying for a feature I wouldn't use? If I find an EDC car I like, I'm happy to try it on the track and maybe keep it as is.

Quote:
sport mapping are a nice touch.
How does this mapping compare to what's available through aftermarket chip/firmware upgrades?

Quote:
BBK or at a minimum some SS brakelines
huh. Brakes were actually the most expensive mod on my A4. I was hoping the M3 would have brakes good enough that I wouldn't need to upgrade. Would I need to upgrade them (like to avoid fade on the track), or do people do it just for a little extra edge?

Quote:
small compressor
heh, I use a small tank of N2. Cost was only like $300 up front, and $60 per refill. As long as you just use it to top off your tires, you can go several events between refills.

Last edited by Drifty; 03-10-2012 at 12:24 PM.
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  #9  
Old 03-10-2012, 06:44 PM
650 Ryder's Avatar
650 Ryder 650 Ryder is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drifty View Post
Thanks for the informative reply!

I was just trying to say that the amount of enjoyment I get from driving stick puts it near the top of the list, so long as fun is a priority. I know I'm giving up a little on the track, and I'm quite alright with that. I'm not looking to win any races or break any records.

You need to drive a DCT car before you make this statement. Many have been converted. The rev matching alone will hook you. No need to heel-toe and this is great when just cruising around.

Does EDC complicate suspension upgrades, or are you just saying that to avoid paying for a feature I wouldn't use? If I find an EDC car I like, I'm happy to try it on the track and maybe keep it as is.

This is a money saving suggestion if you are planning to do a suspension upgrade. I personally find it quite compliant on the track.

How does this mapping compare to what's available through aftermarket chip/firmware upgrades?

Loose the term chip....you'll get flamed immediately . If you plan to get some kind of tune then this won't matter

huh. Brakes were actually the most expensive mod on my A4. I was hoping the M3 would have brakes good enough that I wouldn't need to upgrade. Would I need to upgrade them (like to avoid fade on the track), or do people do it just for a little extra edge?

The weak points in the M3 braking system are pads, fluid, and lines. The rotors are solid. For daily driving the brakes are great. But after a few sessions on a road course you'll notice the fade.
Here you go.......................Phil
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2011.5 Dinan ///M3:
SSII DCT
Comp, Conv, Premium 2 Pkg
Heated Seats
Enhnd Prem Sound
BMW Edition Grills / Gills
BMW M Perf. Steering Wheel
BMW Carbon Fiber Perf. Spoiler
BMW Pedals
Dinan Exhaust
Dinan Mid Racing Exhaust (x-pipe)
Dinan Carbon Fiber Intake
Dinan Racing Middle Exhaust Software
Dinan DCT Tune
Dinan Pulley Kit
Dinan CH-R Wheels
Dinan Carbon Fiber Strut Tower Braces
IND M5 Scheme Mirror Caps
Arkym Front Lip
Carbon Front Reflectors
Lux H8 V3
Brembo 365mm BBK
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  #10  
Old 03-10-2012, 09:26 PM
Drifty Drifty is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 650 Ryder View Post
You need to drive a DCT car before you make this statement. Many have been converted. The rev matching alone will hook you. No need to heel-toe and this is great when just cruising around.
Okay, I take your word for it. Thanks for pointing that out. I will still probably go for a stick, but now I'll feel guilty about it, too.


Quote:
I personally find it quite compliant on the track.
Do you mean that in a good way or a bad way? Is it too soft? Not firm enough? Does it weigh a lot compared to coilovers?

Quote:
The weak points in the M3 braking system are pads, fluid, and lines. The rotors are solid. For daily driving the brakes are great. But after a few sessions on a road course you'll notice the fade.
I'd never track with street pads. Brake fluid is also a no-brainer. In my A4, I use Motul silicone DOT 5.1 with no problems or complaints (it was recommended for my Alcon monoblocks). So, mainly just upgrading the brake lines? That doesn't sound bad at all.

Do you still use stock rotors? How many track days do you get out of them?
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  #11  
Old 03-10-2012, 10:00 PM
650 Ryder's Avatar
650 Ryder 650 Ryder is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drifty View Post
Okay, I take your word for it. Thanks for pointing that out. I will still probably go for a stick, but now I'll feel guilty about it, too.


Do you mean that in a good way or a bad way? Is it too soft? Not firm enough? Does it weigh a lot compared to coilovers?

I'd never track with street pads. Brake fluid is also a no-brainer. In my A4, I use Motul silicone DOT 5.1 with no problems or complaints (it was recommended for my Alcon monoblocks). So, mainly just upgrading the brake lines? That doesn't sound bad at all.

Do you still use stock rotors? How many track days do you get out of them?
Sent you a PM
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2011.5 Dinan ///M3:
SSII DCT
Comp, Conv, Premium 2 Pkg
Heated Seats
Enhnd Prem Sound
BMW Edition Grills / Gills
BMW M Perf. Steering Wheel
BMW Carbon Fiber Perf. Spoiler
BMW Pedals
Dinan Exhaust
Dinan Mid Racing Exhaust (x-pipe)
Dinan Carbon Fiber Intake
Dinan Racing Middle Exhaust Software
Dinan DCT Tune
Dinan Pulley Kit
Dinan CH-R Wheels
Dinan Carbon Fiber Strut Tower Braces
IND M5 Scheme Mirror Caps
Arkym Front Lip
Carbon Front Reflectors
Lux H8 V3
Brembo 365mm BBK
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  #12  
Old 03-10-2012, 11:21 PM
highyo highyo is online now
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as someone who has yet to get my M3, but who will definitely want to spend a day or two tracking it, i found this very interesting guys.
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2012 E92 M3, Jerezschwarz, Dinan Lower Control Arm Monoball Kit, Dinan Racing Rear Toe Link, Dinan Front Carbon Fiber Strut Tower Braces, Dinan Stage 1 Suspension, Dinan 3:62 LSD, Dinan Underdrive Pulley Kit, Dinan High Flow Carbon Intake, BPM stage 1 and DCT tunes, Passport 9500ci, LI Dual
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  #13  
Old 03-16-2012, 04:41 PM
arter arter is offline
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The M3 only needs two things upgraded to track it, better brake pads and brake fluid.
If you are a novice, then you don't need to do either of these until you improve..
The suspension, ZCP or not is pretty good out of the box. Maybe setting your front end alignment to provide more negative chamber will help with tire wear and grip.

The M perf exhaust is fine for Lime Rock Noise limits

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