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      08-27-2011, 08:03 PM   #1
gthal
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Review of various HPDE changes to the M3

I only get out to 2 or 3 HPDEs a year but felt as though I needed to make a few changes to the car to make it a little better suited for the track. Also, I didn't want any of the changes to impact my daily driving situation (i.e. I don't want a third set of rims/tires, didn't want to compromise comfort too much, etc).

I made the following "mods" to the car:

- Stoptech Street Performance pads
- Stoptech SS brake lines
- Motul 600 fluid
- Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 tires

At the June BMW HPDE using OEM pads and fluid, I had serious issues with brake fade and spongy brake pedal. I also found that, although the tires performed VERY well (they were PSS), there was a lot of sidewall roll and I found they got a little greasy in the afternoons. I just got back from day one of this weekend's HPDE and all I can say is that even these simple changes had a HUGE impact on performance. I'm in an intermediate group and in June, I was middle of the pack in terms of the group speedwise. Today, I was clearly one of the fastest cars in the group (same group pretty much) and I attribute that to these changes to the car.

Stoptech pads, SS lines and Motul fluid

These held up SO much better than the OEM set up. I did not experience any real fade today at all. In June on the OEM pads, the fade was so bad that I was finding myself braking early, not feeling comfortable carrying as much speed into the corners, etc. Today, the outdoor temperature was around 27 celcius which was about 7 degrees warmer than the June event. Even with the higher ambient temps, the brakes were substantially better... better bite, no fade, WAY more confidence and no judder at all (I had very bad judder in June). The best part of the SS pads is that they are as quiet as OEM. For those who don't want to run a race pad daily or don't want to swap, this is your pad.

Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 tires


I have posted comments on these before so I won't go into as much detail here. However, these tires held up WAY better than any other tire I have owned. They take heat very, very well. They grip WAY more than anything else I have experienced (PSS, PS2, RE-050A Pole Position and Evo V12), had amazing turn in, were very predictable and broke away very progressively.

I think the reason I was so much faster relative to the group this time than in June was because of these tires. The brake upgrades allowed me to carry more speed into corners with confidence but these tires allowed me to corner faster and get back on the throttle much earlier than I had ever been able to before.

Again, for those that want a great tire that can work exceptionally well at the track and on the street, this is it. It is supposed to rain a lot tomorrow so I will update this thread for comments on the tires wet performance at the track.

It was really quite amazing to me how much these little upgrades made to both the cars performance and my enjoyment of the day. I can only imagine how much the M3 would benefit from a true BBK and R-compound tires. Anyway, if you want mods that make track performance noticeably better but that retain the DD ability of the M3, these few mods are highly recommended.

P.S. There was a Valencia Orange 1M at the event today. He was in my run group. The track is a very short, tight track. He and I never even encountered one another which suggests to me that we were comparable in pace on the track. Also, I have to say that after seeing the inside and outside of the 1M, I have a new respect for it. Much nicer than what I have seen in pictures. It did not have the sound of the M3 but otherwise was a great car. It is, however, noticeably smaller than the M3. If the car is a DD, the 1M would be much less practical IMO. If it is a weekend car, I think it is a great option for sure.
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Last edited by gthal; 08-29-2011 at 03:28 PM.
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      08-27-2011, 08:19 PM   #2
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Sweet. Looks like I'm on the right track with my mods. I have advans and they are equally great in dry but are poor in the wet. I also had my michelins get extremely greasy at the end of sessions. I was sliding all over on them and had to come in early.
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      08-28-2011, 11:05 PM   #3
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Update...

Finished up a VERY wet day at the track. We were seeing the effects of Hurricane Irene and it didn't stop the fun. The RE-11s were very capable in the wet. I was probably running 85% on the very wet track during heavy showers and I never felt a lack of grip and was very comfortable the entire time. I could likely have run faster than I did but didn't think pushing it any more was smart

Anyway, the RE-11s are just as impressive (for being Extreme performance summers) in the rain as they are in the dry. I absolutely LOVE these tires as dual purpose tires. Also, the Stop Tech pads held up wonderfully again but I would have expected as much given the lower ambient temps and the slower track speeds.
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      08-29-2011, 12:16 AM   #4
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RE-11 are definitely in a different category as the other tires you mentioned. There's a reason they are in the "Extreme Performance" category.
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      08-29-2011, 12:46 AM   #5
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when my ps2s are toast i plan on the re11s for my stocker wheels then i will have those and a set of ad08s on my vmrs.
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      08-29-2011, 09:33 AM   #6
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as you progress into faster groups, your stoptech street pads should be swapped out for something more track oriented. the fade that you're probably experiencing is due to the pad choice.
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      08-29-2011, 09:55 AM   #7
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just curious, which track did you go to over the weekend?
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      08-29-2011, 03:06 PM   #8
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I think your mods are spot on. I would add pulling the pins to get more camber in front. You will need better pads in dry and when you get faster. I would not over sell the RE-11s for wet, Dunlop Direzza would be my choice there. Unfortunately in the size I want to run I can only get RS3s... which are also not great in the wet.
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      08-29-2011, 03:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by montreal red View Post
just curious, which track did you go to over the weekend?
Atlantic Motorsport Park outside of Halifax. It is not a track where you get the speeds of, say, Tremblant, but fun and technical nonetheless.
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      08-29-2011, 03:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1MORELAP View Post
I think your mods are spot on. I would add pulling the pins to get more camber in front. You will need better pads in dry and when you get faster. I would not over sell the RE-11s for wet, Dunlop Direzza would be my choice there. Unfortunately in the size I want to run I can only get RS3s... which are also not great in the wet.
All good points... I'm in the intermediate group and on the track I frequent, the speeds never get too high as it is a shorter track. For me, today, the Stop Tech pads are a marked improvement over the OEM pads.

I have not run the Dunlop's but if they are better than the RE-11s in the rain then they would be very capable. It literally poured on us and I never felt like I was running out of grip but was also not running 100% as expected.
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      08-29-2011, 03:26 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sc_tr0jan_m3 View Post
as you progress into faster groups, your stoptech street pads should be swapped out for something more track oriented. the fade that you're probably experiencing is due to the pad choice.
Agreed when I get to faster groups.. however, at the current level I'm at and the track I'm on, I am not getting any noticeable fade or judder with the Stop Techs. With the OEM pads, I absolutely experienced issues but the Stop Techs fixed that for now. On a faster track or as I progress, I agree I may need to upgrade.
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      08-29-2011, 08:03 PM   #12
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The re-11 is definitely better than the dunlop ss in the rain. The design of the re-11 originates in the Bridgestone F1 "full wet" tires.

The re-11 outclasses the dunlop ss in every way. The only advantage the ss has is price.

I think Michelins offer more outright grip in the wet than the re-11, but the hydroplane resistance of the re-11 is absolute top tier.
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      09-09-2011, 12:41 PM   #13
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How are the re-11's in terms of longevity...20K miles?
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