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Old 09-19-2007, 11:34 PM   #1
racing_trend
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M30 conversion

hey guys i know this has been covered but i would like some key points covered if i can get your patience, i was informed of a good alternative to a motor swap initialy i wanted to go with an M52 just for it being a vanos motor, however the M30 the 3.5l I6 in those old 5 and 7 series bimmers i know that they are a direct bolt in, and any 3.5 I6 motor oil pan will clear my subframe or do i still need the 525 one. My car is automatic which i will need to do a 5spd conversion which is preaty straight forward i know that the M20 tranny will bolt up, but to use the 5spd tranny from the 5series will it need any more mods to work in the E30, and lastly the what is needed for the wiring harness and ecm im sure u have to splice into the ETA harness or do i need the I harness? any help would be appreciated guys, what are the HP and TQ ratings for those 3.5's?

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Old 09-20-2007, 12:28 AM   #2
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The M30 is as much a 'bolt in' as an m50. I wouldn't call it as such. But yes the oil pan is more less correct in shape to fit with the e30s subframe.

The M20 tranny will not bolt up to the M30. You need to use the 5spd from the 5er, and you will probably need a custom shift linkage, and driveshaft.

About the wiring, I have never looked up on this, as I have always thought the m30 was a waste of time personally (weight issues #1 prob) You will need the 5ers computer and take the wiring and splice it into the car as per if you would do an m50/52 swap. Somebody feel free to correct me on this statement because I'm not 100% sure on the wiring (I hate wires/electronics etc)
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Old 09-20-2007, 01:45 AM   #3
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Racing Trend, you have a few mixed up info based on your post. First off there are 3 generations of the m30, the first not too popular for m30 swaps the 2nd and most desired the third.

There are two generations of 535i models as well, the e28 535i which has the 2nd generation m30 and the e34 535i which has the 3rd generation m30

The 3rd generation m30 is considered to the best of all because of a few design changes over the 2nd generation, most important 1mm bigger intake valves, motronic software upgrade, higher compression ratio, coolant plumbing brought to the front of the engine.

The m30B35 3rd generation weighs 56 lbs more than the m20 but produces 86 HP more than the m20 2.7L eta motor and more importantly 75 ft/lbs torque more.

In comparason to the m52 b28 2.8L motor, the 3rd generation engine produces 18HP more and 23 ft/lbs torque and weights 3 lbs more.

The 3rd gereration m30 produces 211HP and 305 ft/lbs torque with a cat, without it gains about 10 hp and about the same in torque.

These engines are called tank engines, they are one of the strongest engines BMW ever built and are very simple and inexpensive to repair and maintain.

The 56 extra lbs the engine m30 has can easily be offset with the removal of your sound deadening material ( mine weighed 35 lbs) the aluminum bumpers, the AC compressor, AC condenser (thats if you don't want AC) the mechanical fan and a few other bits and pieces.

There is only one oil pan that will fit the e30, and it's the oil pan from the 3rd generation m30. A few gearboxes will fit, the ones from the e28 535i will fit the 3rd gen engine but the 3rd gen gearbox wont fit the e28 535i engine.
YOUR M20 TRANNY WON'T BOLT UP TO ANY M30 ENGINE.

You can use a 325i harness and the m30 ECU which connects directly to the 325i plug to fire up the m30, no big science to it. There are a few mods to be made but no nightmare.

One of the best documented e30 m30 swap guide is here http://www.e30.de/335i/00.htm

I will be doing the same conversion but with a whole different e30. I am still getting parts in for my project and working on it in between work.
You can see my plans for this winter here http://bmw.turboready.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=287

IMO for simplicity, power, cost and durability, nothing beats an m30 3rd generation swap into an e30.
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Last edited by Striker; 09-20-2007 at 01:59 AM.
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Old 09-20-2007, 09:24 AM   #4
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awsome link thanks guys! i was reading that site tons of valuble information, and i would just like to clarify that using a 325i harness and computer is a good sigh of relief for me because i have a spare parts car awaiting, i'll be planning something like this for early spring i'll keep you guys posted any 1/4mile #'s with the 3rd gen M30 in a E30 out curiosity anyone?

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Old 09-20-2007, 11:30 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Striker View Post
You can use a 325i harness and the m30 ECU which connects directly to the 325i plug to fire up the m30, no big science to it. There are a few mods to be made but no nightmare.
Sick. I didn't know that it was that easy. Hmm...
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Old 09-20-2007, 11:59 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by craz azn View Post
Sick. I didn't know that it was that easy. Hmm...
The m30 ECU physically plugs up to the m20 harness but there are a few pin changes needed to me made at the round plug on the engine harness.

Seeing that Trend has an 86 eta, he can go with a good high flow cat and with a Mark D chip the m30 should gain about 20 HP. This engines benefit the most form this era using a Mark D chip.
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Old 09-21-2007, 09:18 PM   #7
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Engine mounts/brackets are the challenge. I've got all the parts including the E28 rad and E30 ix reservoir, but no damn brackets to get the thing to fit in.

Anyone?
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Old 09-21-2007, 09:35 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by talltorontoguy View Post
Engine mounts/brackets are the challenge. I've got all the parts including the E28 rad and E30 ix reservoir, but no damn brackets to get the thing to fit in.

Anyone?
You could pay a few hundred Euros like we did to get em

Thought you got them already. Give me a bit of time, I can make a jig for them and possibly make a few.
I would like to make a few to test fit my engine in a few different positions so will pull them off and make a jig.
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Old 09-21-2007, 09:47 PM   #9
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The 3rd gereration m30 produces 211HP and 305 ft/lbs torque with a cat, without it gains about 10 hp and about the same in torque.
305 newton-meters is more like it. That engine will never touch 300 ft lbs on any chip, cat or dog. Hell even the S38 won't.
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Old 09-21-2007, 09:59 PM   #10
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305 newton-meters is more like it. That engine will never touch 300 ft lbs on any chip, cat or dog. Hell even the S38 won't.
Yes, they have about 230 pounds from what i remember, and with a chip just under 250...
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Old 09-22-2007, 12:03 AM   #11
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305 newton-meters is more like it. That engine will never touch 300 ft lbs on any chip, cat or dog. Hell even the S38 won't.
Yikes, I have to stop responding to posts at 2 AM half asleep. It was a big typo, it is Nm instead of ft/lbs to be precise 225 ft/lbs torque, wished it was 305

Here is a page with great info on most of the BMW engines with power specs and engine weight. It's very good info regarding decision making of an engine transplant.

http://www.bimmerforums.com/engine_faq/
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Old 09-22-2007, 01:31 AM   #12
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^^^Very good info! I'd love one of these for a swap!>>>
M67
V8 DOHC 32V Diesel. 1999-on. 192kg 423lbs
Used in E38 740d
4.0 Turbo (245bhp)

This must have torque to pull a house!
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Old 09-22-2007, 09:35 AM   #13
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^^^Very good info! I'd love one of these for a swap!>>>
M67
V8 DOHC 32V Diesel. 1999-on. 192kg 423lbs
Used in E38 740d
4.0 Turbo (245bhp)

This must have torque to pull a house!
245 bhp and 442 ft/lb torque and diesel too Tons of torque and cheap to run, would be an awesome engine to have.
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