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      02-01-2009, 05:59 AM   #1
rzm3
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Arrow Why is the Japanese M3 Lower than the US M3?

Update:

Did a search on realoem.com and here are the findings:

1) US and Euro shocks/struts w/ EDC are the same
2) Japan shocks/struts are different compared to US and Euro
3) Springs' part numbers are not available
4) Based on my rough "eyeballing", all other suspension components are the same

Conclusion:
1) BMW altered the strut/shock rate for the Japanese springs, hence this may show that when you change springs, it is best to alter the shocks accordingly as well to maintain the performance

Questions:
1) How exactly are Japanese shocks/struts different?
2) How exactly are Japanses springs different? Are they stiffer and shorter like most aftermarket springs?

----------------------------------------------------

As illustrated below, the Japanese M3 sits about 0.4" (10mm) lower than US versions.

Wonder if we can simply order the Japanese market spring and lower our car?

Can someone do a comparison between part numbers?
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Last edited by rzm3; 02-02-2009 at 02:19 AM.
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      02-01-2009, 08:30 AM   #2
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Subscribed...that is very odd why the Japanese car would be different.
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      02-01-2009, 09:42 AM   #3
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If this is true, it would make me a lot more comfortable with new springs not voiding the EDC warranty. Good find.
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      02-01-2009, 09:56 AM   #4
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Japanese M3 has different spring struts, so the shocks might be identical.


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      02-01-2009, 12:32 PM   #5
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the roads in Japan are some of the nicest in the world... you can cruiz there with race suspensions like sooper slammed. and be just fine...

so BMW took that into consideration... thats pretty cool...
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      02-01-2009, 12:53 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KINGLEH View Post
the roads in Japan are some of the nicest in the world... you can cruiz there with race suspensions like sooper slammed. and be just fine...

so BMW took that into consideration... thats pretty cool...
+1, even in Hokkaido where it snows pretty heavily in the winter, the road surface is as smooth as a baby's bum. Compared to what we have in Massachusetts, our roads are like gravel road to them, only suitable for 1-2hp buggies.......
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      02-01-2009, 01:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kev View Post
+1, even in Hokkaido where it snows pretty heavily in the winter, the road surface is as smooth as a baby's bum. Compared to what we have in Massachusetts, our roads are like gravel road to them, only suitable for 1-2hp buggies.......

from what i saw, some road in Hokkaido have the hot spring nozzle built in. It uses natural resource to melt away snow.
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      02-01-2009, 02:23 PM   #8
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Soaristo has an M3 in Japan, and just by eyeballing some of the pics on his homepage, his M3 does look a little lower than US spec ones:

http://www.soaristo.jpn.org/

Is it just me? If not, someone should send him a PM and introduce him to this thread.

Update: I sent Soaristo a PM with a link to this thread...
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Last edited by aajami; 02-01-2009 at 02:29 PM. Reason: Typo
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      02-01-2009, 03:03 PM   #9
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Doh, RealOEM does not have anything about the Japanese market in it. It would be very cool if the EDC shock were also recalibrated to be stiffer too....
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      02-01-2009, 03:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rldzhao View Post
As illustrated below, the Japanese M3 sits about 0.4" (10mm) lower than US versions.

Wonder if we can simply order the Japanese market spring and lower our car?

Can someone do a comparison between part numbers?
Could it be just easier to order, cheaper or even better to get the Dinan springs with almost the same drop (12.5 vs. 10mm)?
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      02-01-2009, 04:19 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Technic View Post
Could it be just easier to order, cheaper or even better to get the Dinan springs with almost the same drop (12.5 vs. 10mm)?
If springs were the only difference, then I think it would be a cheaper/easier/safer solution than Dinan. Now we just need to verify if this is true.
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      02-01-2009, 05:23 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rldzhao View Post
If springs were the only difference, then I think it would be a cheaper/easier/safer solution than Dinan. Now we just need to verify if this is true.
I don't think that a set of OEM springs (Japanese or not) are going to be cheaper than the Dinan ($899 including the new bump stops) set especially if they have to be ordered and shipped from Japan, ordering these Japanese springs is not going to be easy (just try to order an Euro bumper) if even possible and only the issue of safer will be dependent of the OEM shocks being the same as the USA or not.

That's a lot of ifs...

These Japanese springs remind me of the Euro springs for the MKV GTI which were lower than the USA's for 2 model years by about the same 10mm.
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      02-01-2009, 05:50 PM   #13
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      02-01-2009, 10:12 PM   #14
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I'd say the European Spec M3 is lower than US Spec, not just for the Japan market. Here in New Zealand the car is just as low as shown in that picture of a Japanese spec M3.
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      02-01-2009, 10:50 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kev View Post
+1, even in Hokkaido where it snows pretty heavily in the winter, the road surface is as smooth as a baby's bum. Compared to what we have in Massachusetts, our roads are like gravel road to them, only suitable for 1-2hp buggies.......
Its cause this country spends all of its money on stupid shit and trying to save the rest of the world. This country's infrastructure is a joke.....

Cheers,
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      02-01-2009, 11:06 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mixja View Post
I'd say the European Spec M3 is lower than US Spec, not just for the Japan market. Here in New Zealand the car is just as low as shown in that picture of a Japanese spec M3.
can anyone confirm this?
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      02-01-2009, 11:15 PM   #17
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wow...some of you guys amaze me...do you know how much it would probably cost to buy 4 springs from BMW, Japan or anywhere in Europe?

If you want lower....why not get aftermarket springs? What are you so scared of? Warranty?

I just don't get it, if your that scared to put "aftermarket" springs, then leave it as it came from factory!

I mean...to spend tons of money to be 10mm lower? Really?
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      02-02-2009, 01:27 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slammedm3 View Post
wow...some of you guys amaze me...do you know how much it would probably cost to buy 4 springs from BMW, Japan or anywhere in Europe?

If you want lower....why not get aftermarket springs? What are you so scared of? Warranty?

I just don't get it, if your that scared to put "aftermarket" springs, then leave it as it came from factory!

I mean...to spend tons of money to be 10mm lower? Really?
1. No we don't know. That's why we are asking. Do YOU know?

2. The suspension components are engineered to work with each other. By changing the length and stiffness of the springs, we don't know if the aftermarket springs would still work in harmony with the other OE components.

From the amount of information that is given by most aftermarket spring companies, they don't provide us enough details regarding how, for example, the life of the shocks would change, or how the front/rear balance of the car changes (most springs drop more in the front), or if the front/rear effective spring stiffnesses are proportioned correctly to not cause any understeer (Orb has a lot to say about this), or how riding on the bumpstops changes the force/displacement curve (as preached by Lucid)...

But we DO know that BMW did their homework on this. Hence, by switching to the Japanese springs (assuming that springs are the only difference between US and Japan M3's suspension), we would be able to maintain the proper performance/balance of the suspension and achieve a lower stance that looks better. So, why not?

Warranty may be one of the concerns because we care about the longevity of our beloved M3, but more importantly, many of us who mod our cars care more about maintaining (or even improving) the performance of the car. That's why we would like to make sure that the modified components will not only work, but work properly on the M3.
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      02-02-2009, 02:14 AM   #19
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Update:

Did a search on realoem.com and here are the findings:

1) US and Euro shocks/struts w/ EDC are the same
2) Japan shocks/struts are different compared to US and Euro
3) Springs' part numbers are not available
4) Based on my rough "eyeballing", all other suspension components are the same

Conclusion:
1) BMW altered the strut/shock rate for the Japanese springs, hence this may show that when you change springs, it is best to alter the shocks accordingly as well to maintain the performance

Questions:
1) How exactly are Japanese shocks/struts different?
2) How exactly are Japanses springs different? Are they stiffer and shorter like most aftermarket springs?
Attached Images
 
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      02-02-2009, 08:55 AM   #20
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If the struts and shocks are different, I'm willing to bet the bump stops are different too.... Can anybody provide p/n for the Japan bump stops? They might be shorter....
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      02-02-2009, 09:54 AM   #21
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Wow, lots of good info here. Thanks rldzhao.

It might be worth making a call to a dealerships that has some motorsport friendly techs (there are such dealerships). They might be able to say if such a "suspension" swap would be logistically feasible, and cost effective.
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      02-02-2009, 12:21 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elm3 View Post
If the struts and shocks are different, I'm willing to bet the bump stops are different too.... Can anybody provide p/n for the Japan bump stops? They might be shorter....
I checked last night and they were the same. The struts might have a different geometry to provide more travel.
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