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I was throwing around the idea of installing a cold air intake and was wondering if anyone knew a good decently priced one. Also, how much does it affect the performance?
 

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You already have a CAI from the factory.
 

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You already have a CAI from the factory.
+1 the e39 already has a somewhat ram air cold air intake. The intake box takes in air from the fender and from the lower bumper grill.
 

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+1 the e39 already has a somewhat ram air cold air intake. The intake box takes in air from the fender and from the lower bumper grill.
This is true. I've toyed with the idea, but the BMW's OEM is actually a true CAI. The photo of the filter sticking up in the engine is pulling in hot air like crazy. That would normally pull timing and cause a loss of power. Not to mention losing the true cold air charge. Anything not mounted down in front, or in the case of the BMW, down in the fender, like the OEM, will only suck hot engine air like crazy.

The only one I've seen that actually may be a true CAI, is the Dinan CAI. The filter end goes down in the fender. And I've looked and know what I need to have to make them work. It's a very simple, but also a very effective design from what I can see.

Most of them don't improve power much over the OEM intake though! Mostly, you'll get a more aggressive sounding intake, which is all some people are wanting.

Best price for the Dinan is on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Dinan-D760-0...7756445&sr=8-2&keywords=dinan+cold+air+intake

The only other option I even considered is the "AFE Power Flow Intake Kit", from Bavarian Autosport. It looks to seal the intake off from the hot, engine heated air. Read the description on this one.

http://www.bavauto.com/fland.asp?pa...-2003-277154&gclid=CKm7waqr3c0CFVBhfgodetwEJg
 

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Even Dinan doesn't claim that a cold air intake by itself yields a horsepower or performance increase.
 

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If you want a cold air intake for the "extra power", don't bother; none of them will add a noticeable amount of power.
If you want a cold air intake for the extra sound (which is why I want one), the aFe kits are probably your best bet. Use the dry filters.
 

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The short ram filter does make a nice sound... it sounds a hell of a lot better then the guys who hacked there exhaust off
 

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The aFe seals pretty well with the hood. Yes, it does sound good on hard acceleration. +1 get the dry filter
 

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Even Dinan doesn't claim that a cold air intake by itself yields a horsepower or performance increase.

Per Dinan:

* Max HP gain: 12 at 6000 rpm
*Max TQ gain (lb./ft.): 11 lb./ft. at 6000 rpm

But they're temporarily sold out. This looks like it may be the best one. Goes deep into the fender.
 

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If you want some more sound you could replace the postman hose with an e46 one to delete the sound resonator and remove the two air directing horns inside the airbox and remove the flap from the bumper tubing. Haven't tried this but was brainstorming a while back.
 

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If you want some more sound you could replace the postman hose with an e46 one to delete the sound resonator and remove the two air directing horns inside the airbox and remove the flap from the bumper tubing. Haven't tried this but was brainstorming a while back.
Interesting. Do you think this may smooth out the overall airflow on the intake, or add a little more induction of air? I don't like that accordion section on the intake, or the intake "muffler", no bueno!

I like the OE CAI, generally, but I'd like to clean it up some too, possibly find a way to suck more air without a new system. Since I don't know BMW's, is there another model that I could take parts from for my 1999 540I to improve the intake? Wish I had the M5 setup...Thanks.
 

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Interesting. Do you think this may smooth out the overall airflow on the intake, or add a little more induction of air? I don't like that accordion section on the intake, or the intake "muffler", no bueno!

I like the OE CAI, generally, but I'd like to clean it up some too, possibly find a way to suck more air without a new system. Since I don't know BMW's, is there another model that I could take parts from for my 1999 540I to improve the intake? Wish I had the M5 setup...Thanks.
Interesting you mentioned airflow. Qsilver or edjack or someone in the last cai thread posted why certain parts where designed and implemented. To summarize it's to get airflow to hit the filter with as little turbulence as possible.

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showpost.php?p=9349306&postcount=13
 

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Thanks Barracuz. I'll look for it. I figured, knowing BMW, they'd have a reason for the friken "accordion" tubing.
 

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