I know this is a long read but I really hope this helps those who have been on the fence about installing the ESS Supercharger Kit yourself. I will be updating this thread untill the install is complete and even after I put down a few miles.
**Please note that this is not a DIY but just my personal review on this DIY kit!!**
The desision making:
Like many of you ... I wanted more power, I wanted to be one of a kind, I wanted the best. I love my M3 and work hard for it so I was really careful and did a lot of research before I decided to boost the M3. After months of waiting and lots of reading I finally decided to pull the trigger. I decided to go with the ESS VT1 Supercharger Kit. I decided to go with this kit over others because of a few main reasons ... Their many years of BMW Supercharging experience, the thousands of miles tested on the kit, how stock the kit looked, how great and responsive Roman was, and most importantly I loved the fact that I could do the install myself. Doing the install myself was the main factor. Because I live in Hawaii I did not want to ship my car off island. I mean if I could do the install myself and save a bunch of money from paying a shop or shipping the car then why not. I must say I was kinda on the fence about doing it myself so I took the instuctions to my BMW tech friend to look at. The first thing that came out of his mouth was "WOW" then he said "Come on man, you could do this yourself" I then decided to contact Roman ...
I contacted Roman when he first annouced the production of thier Supercharger kits. I wanted to be one of the first but I didn't want to ship my brand new M3 off island so I decided to wait. During my wait I did some research and asked a few questions to the already ESS SC'd guys. They all had nothing but good things to say about the kit and about the service they recived. We all know that if you're running it then of course your not gonna say anything bad about it right ... Well at this point I was pretty sure the kit was solid but I wanted to make sure that the service was just as solid. I also wanted to make sure that the service would continue even after I bought the kit just in case I ran into any problems. It wouldn't be as easy as hop in another car and drive down to his shop for me so this was very important. I contacted Roman again about a month ago to ask him a few questions. I would literally send him a few PMs a day asking him simple question that was already answered in his thread
Roman was quick to reply and very helpful. I then read where a guy in Asia installed an ESS kit but couldn't get his car running right. My first thought was oh great, but then I saw how fast Roman replied to his problems and how fast the problem got fixed. That basicly sealed the deal for me.
The ordering process:
Well this part was pretty straight forward ... Went online, created an account and placed the order. What's nice about the ESS website is the fact that you can check for updates on your order. There was also a lot of information about all of their products. The fact that there are so my options to spice up your kit is also a nice plus!! Please note that this is my honest review and with any review, there has to be a bad! Well the bad thing about this kit is the wait. ESS will not charge your account untill they ship the kit out. I know this may sound like a good thing but when a week goes by and you still see that money in your account, you can't help yourself but to buy another mod
The customer service continues:
So after ordering the ESS VT1 supercharger kit, I went crazy!! Like anything thing else in high demand, there is a wait time. My wait time was 10-14 days. These two weeks has felt like two months!! It's just as bad as waiting for your M3 to arrive at your local dealer. While I was waiting for my kit, ESS released a IND Black version option for the manifold. I now had another desision to make so I started sending Roman a few more PMs. Even after my order was in, he still continued his exellent service with fast and profesional replys. He laid out a timeline for me to make my desision and helped me along the way. Now that the arrival of the kit was getting closer, I decied to send Roman a few more PM's about my DME. By this point we must have exchanged at least a hundred PMs but again Roman was fast to reply and very helpful. Thank you Roman for your outstanding customer service.
Starting the prep work:
My kit should be here next week so I decided to prep the car for the supercharger install. Many of you may be wonder why so early, well I wanted to make sure that I had the DME back in time for the install. Since the DME was gonna be out, then why not just get things started. I live in a condo so I had to use a friend's garage, anyways I got there at about 2:00pm today. I brought one small tool box, a few towels, a box of ziplock bags, and a sharpie. I started with the battery then moved to the front of the car. When at the front, I started removing the DME, Intake manifold and a few other things. I forgot to bring a drill so that was the only that I had to borrow. Before I knew it I was done with all the prep work and it was only 3:00pm. I must say so far so good ...
If you have any questions, please post them up here so that we can all help and so that we can see the answers ...
Sorry for the iPhone pics but here are a few for you all to see! Wife is gonna kill me if she saw that I left my intake stuff on the bed