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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Powertrain and Drivetrain Discussions > N55 Turbo Engine Tuning and Exhaust Modifications - 335i Tuning > A closer look at the N55 (a tear down)



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      08-27-2010, 01:06 AM   #1
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Cool A closer look at the N55 (a tear down)

Featured on E90POST HOMEPAGE.

Speedracernyc was more than gracious enough to allow me to take his car apart for some R&D for you guys. He was here no longer than a week ago with his brand new 2011 E92 335xi getting wheels, H&R coilovers and HID foglights.

While it was here I also did the golf-tee mod to it, and was able to drive it for myself for the first time to see what it was like. Overall first impressions weren't that great....turbo lag like crazy, it revs on its own and hangs up there forever, and just felt less responsive and slower than the N54. It does however have a hint of Toyota Supra coming out the tailpipe, and its absolutley invigorating to think what its going to sound like fully uncorked next month

Then again my butt has been adjusted to various Procede/JB3/GIAC/turbo upgrades, so who knows, maybe my senses are a little spoiled..

I was eager to crack into this thing, being the fact that I wanted to jump on this engine while it was still new, and lend a hand to the community by doing some research that will benefit the new guys in the long run, and hopefully get them up to speed with the rest of us old timers that are 3 years ahead

Last Monday while reading through the N55 mod thread and not finding much, I made a phone call to Andrew over at AR Design. Not wanting to suffer the same fate as the Riss Racing camp, I went straight to the top and inquired. After some discussion, it was arranged to have speedracer bring his car down to tear it apart and see just how much different it is compared to the N54 owners and see exactly what we can do with it.

I will say that it should take very little to get this engine up to the average of most N54 owners with bolt ons...the turbo looks capable of 15+psi, the turbine wheel is a lot more aggressive than the tiny little pinwheels on the N54...the downpipe being probably the most restrictive part of the group. Keep in mind that before, you had 2 of these sized flanges bolted to the N54 turbos...now the entire engine breathes through only one, and its a lot more restrictive than ever before. 02 sensors have been halved from 4 to 2...makes it a bit easier on the wrenching.

Next month we will have some more in depth results. First thing in september is a call to Vanguard for an exhaust system, and to have the 'xi mod' performed in house....it might be a little expensive but it gives the XI or X-drive owners some variety in exhaust systems and puts it overall priced competitively with AE and a few others.

I will be visiting EPL in CT next month as well to dyno Ultimateendz 'unsuspecting E93' finally to get the results of the turbo upgrades. Since their mustang dyno is AWD and more accurate with real world numbers, I will be bringing the N55 along to see just what it makes with full exhaust, downpipe and a tune. This car currently doesnt have a tune yet and whatever one he goes with will obviously need an 02 sim set in place. Any of you guys (Mike and Shiv) want to offer something up to see what we can do with it? I will NOT tolerate any of the fanboys in here jacking this thread with a pissing contest and will have the mods act accordingly.

And now for some pics
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      08-27-2010, 01:11 AM   #2
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I like the wastegate rod on this turbo..two locking nuts instead of a C clip and an eyelet that would get worn out and become oval instead of a circle, leading to wastegate rattle issues.....

With that part hopefully fixed, lets see if they have improved on the turbine housings and the wastegate arms wont develop crazy play as they were on the N54s..
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      08-27-2010, 01:16 AM   #3
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Hans over in Munich I guess decided that his lunch break was more important than tightening this exhaust nut on the exhaust manifold....

I tried to tighten it up myself, but the nut is already seized on the stud..some Rustek 4 failed to break it loose and niether did the little butane torch I had. Maybe some real heat would loosen it up to get it to move but the car has 7k miles on it with no problems, so I will leave it be until a later date
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      08-27-2010, 01:18 AM   #4
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here is the last batch for now. The rest of them contain pics with rulers and measurements and what not...cant give away all the secrets just yet now
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      08-27-2010, 01:27 AM   #5
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Good progress
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      08-27-2010, 01:54 AM   #6
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nice work.
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      08-27-2010, 02:00 AM   #7
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oh chit mike.
very nice.
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      08-27-2010, 02:00 AM   #8
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someone has plans to make DP for n55
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      08-27-2010, 03:19 AM   #9
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That looks phaaaat !!!! I bet gain's are going to be CRAZY with catless dp's.
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      08-27-2010, 03:51 AM   #10
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good shit mang!
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      08-27-2010, 06:33 AM   #11
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WHAT in blazes is that last couple of pics, the Dual Stage/structure cat?

As for the Tuner dilemma... Until Vishnu/Shiv gets the harness and Firmware released their won't be much to offer..

BMS tune can't be compared to the V4 either (not the same level of hardware. What is being released is equivalent to a JB+ but for the N55, so even attempting a comparison will be pointless... I wish shiv would hurry up with the firmware and harness so I can get that up and running as well in the X5.

Ultimately we cannot compare the two tunes until the Stage 3 JB3 for N55 comes out. Things are looking up for the N55, but we have to thank all the development on the N54 for most of it..

Im not trying to turn this into a tuner war... And that's why I will be using both tunes (not at the same time) on my X5 to see what kind of gains (a heavy beast like mine) will get from both parties...
I have no loyalty to either tuner, but I will remain discreet and not share any technical aspects of either one as they become available to me. As Matt said, lets keep this civil, and not turn this into a flame war
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      08-27-2010, 06:33 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt@Camber-Toe View Post
Speedracernyc was more than gracious enough to allow me to take his car apart for some R&D for you guys. He was here no longer than a week ago with his brand new 2011 E92 335xi getting wheels, H&R coilovers and HID foglights.

While it was here I also did the golf-tee mod to it, and was able to drive it for myself for the first time to see what it was like. Overall first impressions weren't that great....turbo lag like crazy, it revs on its own and hangs up there forever, and just felt less responsive and slower than the N54. It does however have a hint of Toyota Supra coming out the tailpipe, and its absolutley invigorating to think what its going to sound like fully uncorked next month

Then again my butt has been adjusted to various Procede/JB3/GIAC/turbo upgrades, so who knows, maybe my senses are a little spoiled..

I was eager to crack into this thing, being the fact that I wanted to jump on this engine while it was still new, and lend a hand to the community by doing some research that will benefit the new guys in the long run, and hopefully get them up to speed with the rest of us old timers that are 3 years ahead

Last Monday while reading through the N55 mod thread and not finding much, I made a phone call to Andrew over at AR Design. Not wanting to suffer the same fate as the Riss Racing camp, I went straight to the top and inquired. After some discussion, it was arranged to have speedracer bring his car down to tear it apart and see just how much different it is compared to the N54 owners and see exactly what we can do with it.

I will say that it should take very little to get this engine up to the average of most N54 owners with bolt ons...the turbo looks capable of 15+psi, the turbine wheel is a lot more aggressive than the tiny little pinwheels on the N54...the downpipe being probably the most restrictive part of the group. Keep in mind that before, you had 2 of these sized flanges bolted to the N54 turbos...now the entire engine breathes through only one, and its a lot more restrictive than ever before. 02 sensors have been halved from 4 to 2...makes it a bit easier on the wrenching.

Next month we will have some more in depth results. First thing in september is a call to Vanguard for an exhaust system, and to have the 'xi mod' performed in house....it might be a little expensive but it gives the XI or X-drive owners some variety in exhaust systems and puts it overall priced competitively with AE and a few others.

I will be visiting EPL in CT next month as well to dyno Ultimateendz 'unsuspecting E93' finally to get the results of the turbo upgrades. Since their mustang dyno is AWD and more accurate with real world numbers, I will be bringing the N55 along to see just what it makes with full exhaust, downpipe and a tune. This car currently doesnt have a tune yet and whatever one he goes with will obviously need an 02 sim set in place. Any of you guys (Mike and Shiv) want to offer something up to see what we can do with it? I will NOT tolerate any of the fanboys in here jacking this thread with a pissing contest and will have the mods act accordingly.

And now for some pics
It's gonna be a fun ride to epl
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      08-27-2010, 06:49 AM   #13
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Did you guys happen to find any lines to tap for manifold boost for a boost gauge? Since the DV's are gone... We really need a good solution for this once people start upping the boost on the n55.
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      08-27-2010, 08:10 AM   #14
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I had a short trip around the upper engine bay while i was waiting for the car to cool down. I pulled the airbox out completely to look at the intake setup, and i didnt see any vacuum lines at all. I might not have looked hard enough though, i can always get him back into the shop to have another look.

From what it looks like, the diverter valve charge pipe will drop right in from an n54, but some clearance issues with the bottom of the airbox might get in the way, and i wonder how the engine would fare since from what i was reading from army335xi, the diverter is built onto the compressor of the turbo and operated electronically. If there was a way to disable that and find a vacuum source off the manifold without throwing the check engine light, Forge and the other makers of the diverters would now have a whole new batch of customers.

Not to mention that with the new MAF based sensor, dumping the boost charge to atmosphere will almost certainly cause an over rich condition...that and there is no place to recirculate them either.
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      08-27-2010, 08:10 AM   #15
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Good shit Matt, good luck to u in further R&D as well as good luck to Dan and his car. Can't wait to see the results of BOTH these cars

See u Saturday
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      08-27-2010, 08:23 AM   #16
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Do we know what type of turbo is in there? Make?
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      08-27-2010, 09:10 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1LUMI335 View Post
Do we know what type of turbo is in there? Make?
My question also^ and if its a TD04 or something more common, when can we start swapping them out/upgrading easily ?
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      08-27-2010, 09:46 AM   #18
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Great to see some progress on the N55!!
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      08-27-2010, 10:11 AM   #19
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Quote:
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My question also^ and if its a TD04 or something more common, when can we start swapping them out/upgrading easily ?
as soon as someone feels like laying their car up for a month to have a turbo made LOL.

Its a new platform..until we get to the stages of the V4/JB3 2.0 its going to be tough to control boost and take full advantage of it. Heck intercooler options are somewhat limited, Id say lets stick to the bolt ons first and see where it takes us.
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      08-27-2010, 12:21 PM   #20
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That dp looks like a midget one. Also should be very simple for AR to fabricate something really really fast since there should be more room with one pipe and no need to worry about another dp touching. This should be simple IMO and would take much less R&D then for the N54. More room and one less dp
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      08-27-2010, 12:23 PM   #21
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What turbo is it +1
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      08-27-2010, 01:56 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt@Camber-Toe View Post
as soon as someone feels like laying their car up for a month to have a turbo made LOL.
I definitely would've given my car up if I knew this was being done, since I was in Queens for over a month!! But my vacation is up and I'm back in FL.

Quote:
Its a new platform..until we get to the stages of the V4/JB3 2.0 its going to be tough to control boost and take full advantage of it. Heck intercooler options are somewhat limited, Id say lets stick to the bolt ons first and see where it takes us.
Well I'm looking forward to see what goodies come out for this motor

Matt, I don't mean to be o/t, but what aftermarket intercoolers can work with the N55 currently? I'm desperately looking for one because of the ridiculously hot temps here in south FL.

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