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1995 M3

Discussion in 'Member Introductions' started by Scott Mc, Aug 23, 2008.

    Scott Mc guest

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    I just purchased a yellow 1995 M3, sports seats, five speed, 98K miles. It is identical to the car on the cover of the 12/94 car and driver. I must say that I have driven a lot of cars but this has to be one of the more entertaining cars I have driven. My only complaint would be a little more power. I have several questions that I hope the members of this board can help me with:
    1)The front fenders have bmw tags that say dot-r, are these replacement fenders, as the rest of the body panels have a bmw sticker with the vin? I had my body shop go over the car and they could not see any signs of front end damage, however, i see a slight variation in the paint.
    2)The wheels have a lot of heavy brake dust that will not come off with traditional wheel cleaner, any suggestions?
    3)What is the best option for a cupholder/armrest for the center console. Mine has the two ashtrays, with no cup holder or center armrest. I know there are aftermarket options for this just wondering the best place to purchase.
    4) I just joined the BMWCCA are there any autocross events in the nashville, Tn area?

    Thanks in advance for any help.

    Scott Mc
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    Scott

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    Welcome to the wonderful world of the E36 M3 and congratulations.

    1 - Yes, replacement fenders.
    2 - What works for me is Original Bon Ami cleaning powder (in the yellow can usually available from hardware stores (NOT the Bon Ami kitchen and bath cleanser available in grocery stores). Original Bon Ami tends to not scratch the finish.
    3 - I always liked the factory cupholder/tray that fits over center console. Part number is 51 16 8 413 622. Probably available from a number of Roundel advertisers. Bavarian Autosport has them, I think (www.bavauto.com)
    4. Check http://www.trscca.org/soloschedule.html and http://www.oldhickorybmwcca.org/

    By the way, there are a few easy--but not necessarily inexpensive--things you can do about that power thing, such as an airbox, chip, and Euro HFM.

    Have fun.

    --Scott

    Scott Mc guest

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    Scott

    Thanks for the info. I will probably keep the car stock for a while. I think i have figured out the slight variation in color, the repair was painted dakar yellow 2 (clear coat) as opposed to the original dakar yellow (no clear coat). You have to really look for it to tell. I assume that is your M3 in your profile. What type of racing have you done with it? I have a 1972 GS 455 that I have drag raced, I have not done any SCCA type racing. I am looking forward to taking the M3 out to see what it will do. What type of SCCA events would a rookie such as myself compete in? Also any issues i need to be aware of, I already found out the hard way about the crappy water pump. Thanks again for the advise.

    Scott Mc
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    Scott

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    I bought my car new in January 1995. It's done a good number of BMW CCA/Audi Club/PCA driving schools, a couple of Oktoberfest autocrosses, two One Lap of Americas, and for the last seven years, BMW CCA Club Racing. The car always has been and I'm sure always will be, faster than I am.

    I'd recommend any BMW CCA chapter high performance driving schools as may be convenient for you, and sprinkle in a few SCCA autocrosses. The E36 M3 should peg your fun meter at both types of events.

    Issues? Perhaps a few. You already know about the water pump. Some other cooling system-related areas might be the radiator, thermostat, and thermostat housing. If you still have the original radiator, you may want to think about a prophylactic replacement before the upper hose neck cracks. Likewise if you still have the original thermostat and housing. The neck of the plastic coolant expansion tank may, over time, deform because the threads for the coolant cap don't go all the way around the neck. If that happens, you could get coolant leakage that could lead to overheating. There are also other reasons the car might overheat and if that happens, the head gasket is definitely in jeopardy, so keep a close eye for any signs of leaks around the radiator, thermostat, and fan areas.

    If you track your car, you may want to consider welding in rear anti-sway bar reinforcements. The rear toe-plate that also houses the rear trailing arm bushing has three threaded tubes that are spot welded. You may want to have those 360-degree welded to help prevent them tearing out. Likewise, stiffeners for the rear shock mounts and the reinforcing ring for the front strut mounts aren't a bad idea.

    There was a steering column recall on '95s that involved a dealer fix.

    The plastic undertray in the front has notoriously weak mounting points. If not reinforced, the tray has been known to come loose and self-destruct under the car.

    Unless the original crimp clamps on the bottom of the power steering reservoir have been replaced with screw clamps, they will probably leak. It's possible the power steering hoses will eventually leak also.

    Other items may warrant a close watch just because of the car's age; for example, the rubber boots on the brake calipers, the suspension bushings, the front lower control arms, the drivetrain flex disk (guibo), and so on.

    If your car doesn't already have one, I recommend installing the BMW Motorsport X-brace underneath the the car. It will help reduce understeer and make your turn-in more crisp. Good bang for the buck with that part, regardless of whether you just drive on the street or take it to the track or autocross course.

    I'm sure other folks on the forum can give you more items to look out for. But you have a great car--one of the best BMW ever made in my biased opinion--and as long as you keep up with the maintenance, it should give you many years of exciting driving.

    --Scott

    rmani guest

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    congrats on your new car. the '95 M3 was my first car that I actually bought myself when I was 22 years old and boy was it such a blast to drive

    Scott Mc guest

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    Scott/Rmani

    I am definitely enjoying the car. I am looking into the turner motorsports stage 1 package, any thoughts. seems pretty reasonable power increase for $1K. Scott thanks again for all the good info. I have been reading about 0ne lap in car and driver for at least 20 years, sounds like alot of fun.

    Regards

    Scott Mc

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