E90Post
 


 
BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Powertrain and Drivetrain Discussions > N54 Turbo Engine / Drivetrain / Exhaust Modifications - 335i > Review: Rpi Intercooler & Install Pics



View Poll Results: Which FMIC for 335i is best?
RPI 6 11.11%
Hellix 31 57.41%
Active Autowerke 12 22.22%
Spearco 11 20.37%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 54. You may not vote on this poll

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
      06-16-2009, 04:43 PM   #1
645Nm
only in it for the torque - awuleth'umshini wami
645Nm's Avatar
South Africa
11
Rep
425
Posts

 
Drives: sapphire black 335i
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: nomad

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2009 335i sedan  [0.00]
2005 120D  [0.00]
2007 335i sedan  [0.00]
Thumbs up Review: Rpi Intercooler & Install Pics

Who do I have to thank?
**********s - for allowing me to jump the queue and for delivering the RPI intercooler in record breaking time as I was preparing for a special car event. This was an item I ordered and wanted immediately.

The RPI intercooler looks stunning on its own and in the car but I had to get rid of the RPI logo, not because I have anything against the company logo, I wanted the IC to appear stock once installed. With aluminium spray with a high temp tolerance, I erased the logo. Frankly, once the RPI intercooler is installed and the bumper back on, the Intercooler is still VERY noticeable behind the mesh compared to stock.

It took us, exactly 1 hour and 30 odd minutes to install the RPI intercooler. The install process was really easy for me as a novice. The only difficult part was lifting the car using the jacks and bricks that were lying around – if you are not the DIY type - do not try this at home – safety first!!
Removing the covers and bumper was a breeze – I read on the forum some people installed the RPI Intercooler without removing the front bumper. I think it can be done; but it is so much easier if you can see what you are doing by removing the bumper (and take pictures)

Basic tools are needed which you can pick up at your local hardware store such as basic metric sockets, screwdrivers, torx bit, ratchet handle and maybe an extension.

Removing the stock IC after unclipping it from its connectors will literally slide out. This you can do on your own without any help. The attach pictures show how small it is compared to its replacement and certainly MUCH lighter. I don’t think the plastic sides of the stock IC is bad or impacting on performance or badly designed – it just looks cheap.

Pushing the RPI intercooler into the gap is not easy because it is much larger than the stock unit (But it tightly secures the IC). One person cannot do this alone. I had to use my feet as well to push the new unit into place. But once in and the clips on the connecting pipes clicked in (make sure you hear those clips “click” in place); two screws fastened –the job is done. All that remained was the bumper and bottom covers refitted. And whalla!!!

When you start up the car a little bit of smoke and funny smells will come from the exhaust, probably the IC cleaning itself? But after a quick drive it will be back to normal. Well not actually!

But before I describe the new driving experience let me share some of my concerns:

1. The stock intercooler had dirty “blow back” oil on both sides of the connecting pipes that will certainly find their way into the turbos and filter intakes. It is disconcerting for a car with only 4 000km on the clock. Without an “oil catch can” this will happen with the new intercooler as well. BMW engineers better fix this!
2. The RPI intercooler does not have any hooks or holes at the bottom to attach the bottom car covers – at high speeds the wind lifted/pushing into or down the bottom covers – there is no other way to attach the covers. With the stock IC the covers screwed into the stock intercooler holding everything nicely in place. [/SIZE](I have since resolved this by using three small ties to support the plastic covers - which is now steady and strong)
3.
The RPI intercooler does not require any cutting or modifications to the bumper/covers or the plastic housing of the radiator. But due to its size the RPI intercooler does bend some of the existing plastics below the radiator. This will not cause permanent damage but it is not an “exact” fit either.
4. My first install attempt flopped . I did not properly connect the intercooler pipes with the stock pipes. The left hand side pipes were connected properly but the damn pipes on the right slipped out because the clip was not correctly inserted. So when I took the car for a test drive I had quite a few limp modes with reduced power. From the advice of some of the forum members such as oddjob2021 and Mariopalza, I was able to trace and fix the problem – thanks guys.

The drive
The sound is the first thing that changed. The exhaust tone is louder, deeper and throatier outside and inside the cabin (but a nice racy sound). The “ssssh” of the BMS dual cone filters appears less pronounced.

But the car feels less enthusiastic almost lethargic at lower revs in “D” and “DS” modes (see update). But the moment you push it above 3000rpm, the devil is let loose. The “butt dyno” pull is even and strong. Drive feels much smoother compared to stock. The car runs cooler and the engine oil temp remains shy of the 120 degree Celsius.

Another good investment for the 335i. Enjoy the pics!!!
[/size][/size][/font]
Attached Images
              
__________________

JB4. 15ohm /Catless DPs/BMS DCI/BHS Oil Catch Can/RPI FMIC/Bilstein B16/BMW Perf Exhaust/BMW Perf Rims 19'/BMW Perf Steering Wheel/BMS Meth Kit/CMGS Guage/BMS Speed Limiter Defeat/STETT Chargepipe & DV's/DREAMLIST:Upgraded Turbos
REVIEWS: Bilstein B16 Ridecontrol//BMW Performance Exhaust//RPI Intercooler//Race Camara Mount

Last edited by 645Nm; 06-20-2009 at 01:15 AM.
Appreciate 0
      06-16-2009, 04:51 PM   #2
ontopofm
Lieutenant Colonel
28
Rep
1,548
Posts

 
Drives: stock
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: CA

iTrader: (4)

I really dislike small size IC because I have one too. Regardless, congrat
Appreciate 0
      06-16-2009, 05:51 PM   #3
Callsign_Jester
Private First Class
United_States
1
Rep
125
Posts

 
Drives: Euro Trash
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Annapolis, MD

iTrader: (0)

I'm surprised to see that they don't replace the IC charge pipes as well. The install looks nice and it certainly looks menacing behind the bumper.
Appreciate 0
      06-16-2009, 06:24 PM   #4
ontopofm
Lieutenant Colonel
28
Rep
1,548
Posts

 
Drives: stock
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: CA

iTrader: (4)

for the poll, I'd take the Helix, AA, or Stett over anything else because they're large and look aggressive behind the bumper
Appreciate 0
      06-16-2009, 09:41 PM   #5
Zeph
Major
United_States
16
Rep
1,410
Posts

 
Drives: 2008 E92 335i 6MT SGM CR/BD
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Southeast USA

iTrader: (0)

Send a message via AIM to Zeph Send a message via Yahoo to Zeph
looks like the RPI doesn't replace the charge pipe connector that is the largest restriction IMO
Appreciate 0
      06-17-2009, 11:06 AM   #6
645Nm
only in it for the torque - awuleth'umshini wami
645Nm's Avatar
South Africa
11
Rep
425
Posts

 
Drives: sapphire black 335i
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: nomad

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2009 335i sedan  [0.00]
2005 120D  [0.00]
2007 335i sedan  [0.00]
thanks

Thanks guys for the comments.
Zeph you are right, the stock right chargepipe bends quite sharply and must be a major restriction for the free flow of air.

Ontopofm and Callsign_Jester - Agree: the space that the aftermarket ICs have to fit in is rather tight unless modifications are done to the bumper and the radiator plastic housing/shroud. Simmilar to the install for the AA. I initially wanted the AA IC but was worried about the cutting. Then again the cutting that will be done for a larger IC will not be noticeable from the outside. It might only be an issue when you want to sell the car and the new buyer crawls under the car and "see" the cutting. The cutting is actually a non issue since the benefits outway the trimming sacrifice.
__________________

JB4. 15ohm /Catless DPs/BMS DCI/BHS Oil Catch Can/RPI FMIC/Bilstein B16/BMW Perf Exhaust/BMW Perf Rims 19'/BMW Perf Steering Wheel/BMS Meth Kit/CMGS Guage/BMS Speed Limiter Defeat/STETT Chargepipe & DV's/DREAMLIST:Upgraded Turbos
REVIEWS: Bilstein B16 Ridecontrol//BMW Performance Exhaust//RPI Intercooler//Race Camara Mount
Appreciate 0
      06-17-2009, 11:28 AM   #7
Mike@ModBargains
Mike@ModBargains's Avatar
United_States
7
Rep
407
Posts

 
Drives: 2008 BMW 135i
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: 1721 E Lambert Rd #C, La Habra, CA 90631

iTrader: (1)

Send a message via AIM to Mike@ModBargains
Thank you again for the order and for the detailed review!
Appreciate 0
      06-17-2009, 12:40 PM   #8
MSPORTWORLD
Major
MSPORTWORLD's Avatar
United_States
33
Rep
1,221
Posts

 
Drives: '11 M3 MW/FR - '12 M3 FO/SC
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: California

iTrader: (3)

Garage List
ETS Intercooler on the way! Same size as the RPI but replaces charge pipe.

Should arrive on Tuesday next week but I will be in Vegas for a week so a install write-up is at least a week away.
__________________
Appreciate 0
      06-17-2009, 01:11 PM   #9
oddjob2021
ASR Turbos+LSD+Meth= :D
oddjob2021's Avatar
23
Rep
1,517
Posts

 
Drives: E92 335i
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Miami, FL

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2007 E92 335i  [0.00]
nice review, im glad everything worked out. dont worry what people say about the connecting hose the the charge pipe, its not the bottle neck of our cars. the true bottle neck is the plastic intake pipes that go around our hot engine block to the turbos. find a way to fix those first and I'll jump on the bandwagon of better i/c pipes.
__________________

2007 335i Coupe
Mods: Check the Garage
Appreciate 0
      06-17-2009, 01:22 PM   #10
645Nm
only in it for the torque - awuleth'umshini wami
645Nm's Avatar
South Africa
11
Rep
425
Posts

 
Drives: sapphire black 335i
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: nomad

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2009 335i sedan  [0.00]
2005 120D  [0.00]
2007 335i sedan  [0.00]
thanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by oddjob2021 View Post
nice review, im glad everything worked out. dont worry what people say about the connecting hose the the charge pipe, its not the bottle neck of our cars. the true bottle neck is the plastic intake pipes that go around our hot engine block to the turbos. find a way to fix those first and I'll jump on the bandwagon of better i/c pipes.
Your advice was spot on! Thanks. I forgot to ask you if you kept the RPI logo and how it looks behind the mesh?. I was also tempted to spray the IC black.
__________________

JB4. 15ohm /Catless DPs/BMS DCI/BHS Oil Catch Can/RPI FMIC/Bilstein B16/BMW Perf Exhaust/BMW Perf Rims 19'/BMW Perf Steering Wheel/BMS Meth Kit/CMGS Guage/BMS Speed Limiter Defeat/STETT Chargepipe & DV's/DREAMLIST:Upgraded Turbos
REVIEWS: Bilstein B16 Ridecontrol//BMW Performance Exhaust//RPI Intercooler//Race Camara Mount
Appreciate 0
      06-17-2009, 01:27 PM   #11
645Nm
only in it for the torque - awuleth'umshini wami
645Nm's Avatar
South Africa
11
Rep
425
Posts

 
Drives: sapphire black 335i
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: nomad

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2009 335i sedan  [0.00]
2005 120D  [0.00]
2007 335i sedan  [0.00]
Oh ya!

Quote:
Originally Posted by hkyplaynazn View Post
ETS Intercooler on the way! Same size as the RPI but replaces charge pipe.

Should arrive on Tuesday next week but I will be in Vegas for a week so a install write-up is at least a week away.
Oh so good. Did you order the black version?
__________________

JB4. 15ohm /Catless DPs/BMS DCI/BHS Oil Catch Can/RPI FMIC/Bilstein B16/BMW Perf Exhaust/BMW Perf Rims 19'/BMW Perf Steering Wheel/BMS Meth Kit/CMGS Guage/BMS Speed Limiter Defeat/STETT Chargepipe & DV's/DREAMLIST:Upgraded Turbos
REVIEWS: Bilstein B16 Ridecontrol//BMW Performance Exhaust//RPI Intercooler//Race Camara Mount
Appreciate 0
      06-17-2009, 03:43 PM   #12
oddjob2021
ASR Turbos+LSD+Meth= :D
oddjob2021's Avatar
23
Rep
1,517
Posts

 
Drives: E92 335i
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Miami, FL

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2007 E92 335i  [0.00]
Quote:
Originally Posted by 645Nm View Post
Your advice was spot on! Thanks. I forgot to ask you if you kept the RPI logo and how it looks behind the mesh?. I was also tempted to spray the IC black.
hah, funny story actually, my logo was sprayed on backwards =\ it was one of the original RPi i/c produced. I called RPi and complained about the upside down issue, he looked into it and found out this guy knew he was getting laid off and screwed it up on purpose. anyway long story short, i rubbed it off just like you
__________________

2007 335i Coupe
Mods: Check the Garage
Appreciate 0
      06-17-2009, 04:26 PM   #13
Big Tom
Banned
Sweden
22
Rep
1,060
Posts

 
Drives: 335i n54 e92 MT
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Västerås

iTrader: (0)

I cant see the meaning of changing the OEM-IC to a smaller one...?
Even the cells looks really crappy IMO.
Appreciate 0
      06-17-2009, 07:38 PM   #14
uberschnell
Brigadier General
uberschnell's Avatar
No_Country
71
Rep
3,424
Posts

 
Drives: // 135i //, X5
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Bay Area

iTrader: (44)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Tom View Post
I cant see the meaning of changing the OEM-IC to a smaller one...?
Even the cells looks really crappy IMO.
The RPI IC is far larger then stock, what are you talking about?
__________________
- 08 135i - Wavetrac LSD, AST 4100, Swift springs, Brembo GT brakes, M3 front sway, Meyle HD links, Dinan Camber plates, Whiteline subframe bushings, M3 rear guide and upper link, M3 front control arms, HP custom M3 front Strut brace, Megan rear control arms, F30 brake shields -
Appreciate 0
      06-18-2009, 03:24 AM   #15
Big Tom
Banned
Sweden
22
Rep
1,060
Posts

 
Drives: 335i n54 e92 MT
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Västerås

iTrader: (0)

Quote:
Originally Posted by MteK View Post
The RPI IC is far larger then stock, what are you talking about?
The OEM-core is wider and have almost the same height.
Why not mount a IC who is bigger on all dimensions (like Helix), combined with a proper core?
Appreciate 0
      06-18-2009, 07:58 AM   #16
645Nm
only in it for the torque - awuleth'umshini wami
645Nm's Avatar
South Africa
11
Rep
425
Posts

 
Drives: sapphire black 335i
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: nomad

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2009 335i sedan  [0.00]
2005 120D  [0.00]
2007 335i sedan  [0.00]
Pictures say a thousand words

Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Tom View Post
The OEM-core is wider and have almost the same height.
Why not mount a IC who is bigger on all dimensions (like Helix), combined with a proper core?
I see your point. Looking at my picture comparing the stock & RPI ICs the stock IC core is wider (in length). But the RPI core makes up in height AND depth AND wih bigger end tanks for improved internal flow. I cannot compare the RPI with the Helix. Would like to see a side by side picture comparison of the Helix and RPI. I guess an intercooler with a wider core (in length) has to sacrifice smaller end tanks!? There is only so much space within the stock plastic shroud for the intercooler to fit. Before the install I took many pictures of the RPI intercooler vs stock. Here are two that show off the dimensions even better.
Attached Images
  
__________________

JB4. 15ohm /Catless DPs/BMS DCI/BHS Oil Catch Can/RPI FMIC/Bilstein B16/BMW Perf Exhaust/BMW Perf Rims 19'/BMW Perf Steering Wheel/BMS Meth Kit/CMGS Guage/BMS Speed Limiter Defeat/STETT Chargepipe & DV's/DREAMLIST:Upgraded Turbos
REVIEWS: Bilstein B16 Ridecontrol//BMW Performance Exhaust//RPI Intercooler//Race Camara Mount
Appreciate 0
      06-18-2009, 08:02 AM   #17
645Nm
only in it for the torque - awuleth'umshini wami
645Nm's Avatar
South Africa
11
Rep
425
Posts

 
Drives: sapphire black 335i
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: nomad

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2009 335i sedan  [0.00]
2005 120D  [0.00]
2007 335i sedan  [0.00]
Quote:
Originally Posted by oddjob2021 View Post
hah, funny story actually, my logo was sprayed on backwards =\ it was one of the original RPi i/c produced. I called RPi and complained about the upside down issue, he looked into it and found out this guy knew he was getting laid off and screwed it up on purpose. anyway long story short, i rubbed it off just like you
Funny indeed. Feel sorry for the chap that got laid off.
__________________

JB4. 15ohm /Catless DPs/BMS DCI/BHS Oil Catch Can/RPI FMIC/Bilstein B16/BMW Perf Exhaust/BMW Perf Rims 19'/BMW Perf Steering Wheel/BMS Meth Kit/CMGS Guage/BMS Speed Limiter Defeat/STETT Chargepipe & DV's/DREAMLIST:Upgraded Turbos
REVIEWS: Bilstein B16 Ridecontrol//BMW Performance Exhaust//RPI Intercooler//Race Camara Mount
Appreciate 0
      06-18-2009, 03:32 PM   #18
uberschnell
Brigadier General
uberschnell's Avatar
No_Country
71
Rep
3,424
Posts

 
Drives: // 135i //, X5
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Bay Area

iTrader: (44)

Not to mention the RPI intercooler weighs twice as much as the stock IC. Important when it comes to heat disapation.
__________________
- 08 135i - Wavetrac LSD, AST 4100, Swift springs, Brembo GT brakes, M3 front sway, Meyle HD links, Dinan Camber plates, Whiteline subframe bushings, M3 rear guide and upper link, M3 front control arms, HP custom M3 front Strut brace, Megan rear control arms, F30 brake shields -
Appreciate 0
      06-18-2009, 04:07 PM   #19
Chefcg1
Major
Chefcg1's Avatar
United_States
18
Rep
1,092
Posts

 
Drives: 2008 BMW 335i
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Mount Airy, NC

iTrader: (6)

any flow rate comparrisons between the stock unit and the RPI?
__________________
2008 335i coupe AW 6AT, RB Turbos, PROcede 2.5 V5, Alpina Flash, Injen Intake, VK MW DP . Helix IC, Vishnu PnP Meth(M10 nozzel), M3 sides, OEM Aero Lip, VMR V710 Midnight Blue, LUX H8, HID Fogs, M3 front bits, D2 Copilovers, Whiteline Rear Bushing inserts, Custom M3 Steering Wheel, Cyba scoops, M2 Performance Exhaust
Appreciate 0
      06-18-2009, 04:39 PM   #20
RipsE92
Second Lieutenant
9
Rep
233
Posts

 
Drives: 2007 335i Coupe
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Goodyear, Arizona

iTrader: (2)

RPi Rocks!!
Appreciate 0
      06-18-2009, 10:33 PM   #21
stimpy
Colonel
38
Rep
2,151
Posts

 
Drives: E92 335i
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Phoenix AZ

iTrader: (7)

Quote:
Originally Posted by 645Nm View Post
The drive
The sound is the first thing that changed. The exhaust tone is louder, deeper and throatier outside and inside the cabin (but a nice racy sound). The “ssssh” of the BMS dual cone filters appears less pronounced.
Sound changes with an intercooler?
Appreciate 0
      06-18-2009, 10:40 PM   #22
ToadHollow
Once upon a time ......
ToadHollow's Avatar
Italy
69
Rep
5,060
Posts

 
Drives: 2008 JB E92 - SOLD 5/2010
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Asti, Italy & Austin, Texas

iTrader: (16)

Garage List
2008 E92 335i  [4.00]
Send a message via MSN to ToadHollow
Quote:
Originally Posted by stimpy View Post
Sound changes with an intercooler?
Yup, the exhaust note on mine became much lower ......... sounds like the car has an extra couple of cylinders now.
__________________



Appreciate 0
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:36 AM.




e90post
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
1Addicts.com, BIMMERPOST.com, E90Post.com, F30Post.com, M3Post.com, ZPost.com, 5Post.com, 6Post.com, 7Post.com, XBimmers.com logo and trademark are properties of BIMMERPOST