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      09-01-2017, 11:55 PM   #1
Theodore
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For New Owners - What I wish I knew when I first bought my E9X M3:

For New Owners - What I wish I knew when I first bought my E9X M3:

1. The best info on M3Post is found in the less travelled E90/E92 M3 "Technical Topics" subsections - Engine, Wheels, Suspension, Cosmetic, Coding, DIY, Maintenance, Detail and Track. Notice how this "wish I knew list" is posted in the General Forum section? Caveat emptor.

Technical Topics Subsections

2. The E9X M3 has a hidden software setting to tweak the M Dynamic Mode (MDM) feature. Hire one of the many remote coders on this website to adjust the software settings in yours to the "Euro" MDM settings. This really livens up the car by making the traction control way less intrusive without being completely turned off for those extreme mistakes. This is one of the areas where the BMWs of this era really shine vs the Mercs.

Euro MDM

3. The E9X M3's S65 motors tick and click, it's normal.

S65 Motor Ticking

4. Some brands of oil are less noisy than others when used in the S65 engine. The ridiculously named "BMW M TwinTurbo Power 10W-60" oil and Shell Helix Ultra Racing 10W-60 oil (which may be one in the same, just with different labels) are two of the quietest options.

Shell Helix Ultra Racing 10W-60 Sound Test

5. The E9X M3's DCT transmissions shift clunky at low speeds and switch between drive and reverse slowly, it's normal. They make up for laggy slow speed performance higher in the RPM range and at higher speeds. If you really dislike it, tuners sell a DCT software tune (usually called the GTS DCT tune) that smooths things out more via software only.

DCT Slow Speed Behavior

6. The E9X M3's DCT transmission is nearly bullet proof. BMW made amends for the absymal reliability of the SMG transmission before it. Most of them will eventually "weep" a little bit of DCT fluid, but they can do that safely for 10's of thousands of miles before seal replacements are really needed.

Common DCT "Weeping"

7. The water pump on the S65 is bullet proof for at least 10 years, BMW got this one right. This is another area where BMW made amends for one of the previous generation model's shortcomings.

Have You Experienced a Water Pump Failure in Your E9X M3?

8. The E9X M3's two throttle actuators will eventually fail you and very often the second one will fail shortly after the first. There is a "hidden warranty" of sorts where failing throttle actuators will be replaced free of charge if they fail in the first 7 years or 70k miles for cars registered in California Emissions states which include: California, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont or Washington

Throttle Actuators Covered by California Emissions Warranty

9. The E9X M3 deflection pulley (aka idler pulley) fails early. It's a low cost replacement part (by BMW standards) and easy to DIY if you want. A squeal from the engine bay of an S65 is almost always this part self destructing.

Details
Example A
Example B

10. Nearly all BWM E9X M3 maintenance parts are purchased by BMW from another company, placed in a BMW branded cardboard box, marked up 25-100% and then sold to you as the official BMW replacement part. Surprisingly, most of those exact parts BMW buys can be bought by you for a lot less. Check out this link for all of the exact factory matched parts ID'd so far.

E9X M3 Exact OEM Equivalent Parts

11. All E9X M3's are, will be or were part of the Takata airbag recall. Many E9X M3s now are part of the main positive battery cable recall for the cable that runs from the trunk mounted battery to the fuse panel behind the glove box. 2013 model year E9X M3s have an extended warranty for the idle control valve for 10 years or 120,000 miles. Some E9X M3's (e90 M3's built 8/31/2009 to 10/28/2011, E92 M3's built 7/27/2009 to 6/28/2013, E93 M3's built 8/29/2009 to 10/1/2013) have a hidden reimbursement warranty, to include past repairs, for the Footwell (FRM) Module (controls lights and windows) if it fails within 8 years or 125,000 miles under BMW SI B01 20 16.

Takata Airbag Recall
Battery Cable Recall
Idle Control Valve Hidden Extended Warranty
Footwell (FRM) Module Hidden Extended Warranty

12. The E9X M3's original batteries were Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) group 49 type battery, 900 Cold Cranking Amps (CCA) and 90 Amp Hours (Ah). You can't buy those exact specs anymore. Instead the BMW batteries for the E9X M3 now offer AGM "group 49", 850 CCA and 92 Ah, which are the same specs as the Sears DieHard Gold AGM and nearly the same for the Bosch 49-850BAGM with 850 CCA and 90 AH. The Autozone Duralast AGM "group 49" and Advance Auto Parts AutoCraft Gold AGM "group 49" models offer 900 CCA and 92 AH.
Replacement Battery Options

13. If your E9X M3's A/C is low on freon its most likely the evaporator failing. It is built of especially low quality. Good news is the replacement part is not too expensive. The bad news is your dealer will likely charge you for a full day or two of labor. If you have any warranty remaining, have someone take a close look at the condition of this part before it expires.

This A/C Component Will Fail First

14. The E9X M3's came standard from the factory with orange peel paint and some ever so slightly misaligned body panels. Just call it Bavarian character.

BMW Orange Peel Paint
Gap Between Hood and Front Bumper
Rear Bumper Alignment

15. The E9X M3's S65 motors respond really well to early replacement of the spark plugs (the car's manual calls for 37,000 mile service intervals). You can feel a difference, even if the spark plugs coming out of the car only had 10,000 miles on them. This is a great afternoon project if you are eager to improve the performance of your new to you M3. Consider doing this inexpensive upgrade instead of breaking out that black Krylon to tint those rear tailights.

Early Spark Plug Replacement

16. E9X M3's wear through motor mounts really fast, as within 30,000 miles they can start to fall apart. Changing them out earlier than you would for another model car makes for a measurable and immediate improvement in the shifting of your car. Don't bother with the transmission mounts unless you are over 100k as they hold up very well.

Fast Wearing Motor Mounts

17. Code readers, either a stand alone unit or a cell phone app type with a bluetooth/wifi OBDII port adapter, are great for this car. Buy one asap.

Code Readers

18. E9X M3's are much more fun to drive than to look at.



Experienced E9X M3 owners, feel free to add to the list!
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E9X M3 Common Torque Specs Can Be Found Here
E9X M3 Exact OEM Equivalent Parts Can Be Found Here
What I Wish I Knew When I First Bought My E9X M3 Can Be Found Here

Last edited by Theodore; 07-04-2018 at 09:15 PM. Reason: typo fixed
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      09-02-2017, 12:02 AM   #2
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Wow--very useful thread, Theodore. Thanks for taking the time.
I've had my E92 M3 exactly three months tomorrow.

Terry
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      09-02-2017, 12:28 AM   #3
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great thread!!
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      09-02-2017, 12:33 AM   #4
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Thank you.
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      09-02-2017, 02:31 AM   #5
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Good post, don't forget about rod bearings. I also think the V8 should be faster than it is, other than that its a good car.
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      09-02-2017, 02:36 AM   #6
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Theodore, you've done it again, another useful thread - nice!
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      09-02-2017, 02:36 AM   #7
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Anyone did the euro mdm and not be able to access dsc off in m mode? I dont know if that issue is related to coding.
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      09-02-2017, 05:19 AM   #8
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Great post Theodore...
Just wondering how you got my crazy driving video? Of course I was taking it easy because it was DCT...
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      09-02-2017, 06:50 AM   #9
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      09-02-2017, 07:25 AM   #10
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Really appreciate creating this post Theodore..

I have seen half of the threads you have listed so need to go check out the ones that I have not yet gone through.
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      09-02-2017, 07:43 AM   #11
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E9X M3 *Greatest Hits* MegaThread (Press/Media/Reviews) 100+ Videos
http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1383761

Its a great thread for those just starting ownership. The E9X M3 was the benchmark in this class.
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      09-02-2017, 07:52 AM   #12
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amazing thread. thx OP!!
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      09-02-2017, 08:50 AM   #13
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Very thoughtful Theodore, in the top ten for best threads of the year.
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      09-02-2017, 09:15 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Theodore View Post
For New Owners - What I wish I knew when I first bought my E9X M3:

1. The best info on M3Post is found in the less travelled E90/E92 M3 "Technical Topics" subsections - Engine, Wheels, Suspension, Cosmetic, Coding, DIY, Maintenance, Detail and Track. Notice how this "wish I knew list" is posted in the General Forum section? Caveat emptor.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=123

2. The E9X M3 has a hidden software setting to tweak the M Dynamic Mode MDM feature. Hire one of the many remote coders on this website to adjust the software settings in your to the "Euro" MDM settings. This really livens up the car by making the traction control way less intrusive without being completely turned off for those extreme mistakes. This is one of the areas where the BMWs really shine vs the Mercs.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=956396

3. The E9X M3's S65 motors tick and click, it's normal.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1167323

4. Some brands of oil are less noisy than others when used in the S65 engine. The ridiculously named "BMW Twin Turbo Power 10W-60" oil and Shell Helix 10W-60 oil (which may be one in the same, just with different labels) are two of the quietest options.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1350805

5. The E9X M3's DCT transmissions shift clunky at low speeds and switch between drive and reverse slowly, it's normal. They make up for laggy slow speed performance higher in the RPM range and at higher speeds. If you really dislike it, tuners sell a DCT software tune (usually called the GTS DCT tune) that smooths things out more via software only.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1091635

6. The E9X M3's DCT transmission is nearly bullet proof. BMW made amends for the absymal reliability of the SMG transmission before it.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=894069

7. The water pump on the S65 is bullet proof, BMW got this one right. This is another area BMW made amends for one of the previous generation model's shortcomings.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1373126

8. The E9X M3's two throttle actuators are made of glass (figuratively). They will eventually fail you and very often the second one will fail shortly after the first. There is a "hidden warranty" of sorts where failing throttle actuators will be replaced free of charge if they fail in the first 7 years or 70k miles for cars registered in California Emissions states which include: California, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont or Washington

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1312330

9. The E9X M3 deflection pulley (aka idler pulley) fails early and often. It's a low cost replacement part (by BMW standards) and easy to DIY if you want. A squeal from the engine bay of an S65 is almost always this part self destructing.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1162212

10. Nearly all BWM E9X M3 maintenance parts are purchased by BMW from another company, placed in a BMW branded cardboard box, marked up 25-100% and then sold to you as the official BMW replacement part. Surprisingly, most of those exact parts BMW buys can be bought by you for a lot less. Check out this link for all of the exact factory matched parts ID'd so far.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1343867

11. All E9X M3's are or were part of the Takata airbag recall. Many E9X M3s now are part of the main positive battery cable recall for the cable that runs from the battery mounted trunk to the fuse panel behind the glove box. 2013 model year E9X M3s have an extended warranty for the idle control valve for 10 year or 120,000 miles.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1224855
http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1373697
http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1251633

12. The E9X M3's original batteries were Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) group 49 type battery, 900 Cold Cranking Amps (CCA) and 90 Amp Hours (Ah). You can't buy those exact specs anymore. Instead the BMW batteries for the E9X M3 now offers AGM group 49, 850 CCA and 92 Ah, which are the same specs as the Sears DieHard and Autozone Duralast AGM group 49 models.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1194030

13. If your E9X M3's A/C is low on freon its most likely the evaporator failing. It is built of especially low quality. Good news is the replacement part is not too expensive. The bad news is your dealer will likely charge you for a full day or two of labor. If you have any warranty remaining, have someone take a close look at the condition of this part before it expires.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...=666116&page=2

14. The E9X M3's S65 motors respond really well to early replacement of the spark plugs (the car's manual calls for 37,000 mile service intervals). You really can feel a difference, even if the spark plugs coming out of the car only had 10,000 miles on them. This is a great afternoon project if you are eager to improve the performance of your new to you M3. Consider doing this inexpensive upgrade instead of breaking out that black Krylon to tint those rear tailights.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=471690

15. E9X M3's wear through motor mounts really fast, as within 30,000 miles they can start to fall apart. Changing them out earlier than you would for another model car makes for a measurable and immediate improvement in the shifting of your car. Don't bother with the transmission mounts unless you are over 100k as they hold up very well.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1005111

16. Code readers, either a stand alone unit or a cell phone app type with a bluetooth/wifi OBDII port adapter, are great for this car. Buy one asap.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1149024

17. E9X M3's are much more fun to drive than to look at.






Experienced E9X M3 owners, feel free to add to the list!

Great f^ thread! Thank you!
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      09-02-2017, 11:07 AM   #15
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Sub'd. Great thread!
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      09-02-2017, 12:35 PM   #16
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Well done, thank you sir.
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      09-02-2017, 01:02 PM   #17
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Awesome thread!

There was another thread about strange noises the car makes that are totally normal. You should include those as well!

Here it is: http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=512258
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      09-02-2017, 01:08 PM   #18
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Awesome!
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      09-02-2017, 01:52 PM   #19
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great thread!
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      09-02-2017, 03:44 PM   #20
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+1. Great post that covers a lot of the need-to-know points!
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      09-03-2017, 01:52 AM   #21
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Great post, really helpful for someone like myself who is currently looking for the M3 for me.
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      09-03-2017, 04:27 AM   #22
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How about... When changing the battery, don't shut the boot/trunk as it's a PITA to open again without a battery/hooking up the front charge points. Unless you have an older model that opens with a key but normally the lock is seized since it's never used.
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