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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Tracking, Autocrossing, Dragstrip, Driving Techniques > let's talk about coilovers,wheels,tires for auto x, daily driver



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      04-30-2015, 12:49 PM   #1
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let's talk about coilovers,wheels,tires for auto x, daily driver

Ok so I did another auto x and had a blast. Pretty fun way to spend an afternoon w some buddies.

I'm stock sport suspension and run flats. The car is a handful. I feel like I'm driving a Cadillac w all the body roll. Haha ok it's not that bad but it's not great either.

So I'm thinking of running some 18x9.5 apex arc 8's. 9.5 front and rear so the concave match. They don't offer a profile 3 in a 9.0 like they do w the 17" options.

I'm not sure about running 255/35 square??? I would like to run a wider tire out back to help w traction. Anything smaller than a 255 up front is going to look stretched on a 9.5. Not my thing.

So coilovers. Where to begin? There are some BC racing coil overs on ebay that have camber plates included. I'm probably going to need to have the ability to dial in some negative camber w a 9.5 w a 255/35 up front.

Are these coilovers just junk? I'm not looking to spend thousands and thousands on coilovers but I am mainly looking for a way to drop the car, keep it flat through hard cornering and just generally be a nice upgrade in handling from stock suspension. Im not trying to have the most bad ass auto x car or track car. I just would lIke it to be more competetive w some of the other cars. I have a buddy w a c6 w sticky rubber who routinely is 3 seconds a lap faster. Are there any other coilovers I should consider? KW's seem popular but is a big part of the cost the name? They are expensive when compared to other offerings.

Anyway would be curious to hear your thoughts. Oh sway bars? Dif lockdown? LSD would be fun and it also might be on the horizon.
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      04-30-2015, 05:07 PM   #2
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If you want to avoid being frustrated, pick the class you want to build toward and stick to the allowances. Nothing is more frustrating that spending money and not improving relative to competition. With that said, I'd either build to FStreet (means 18x9F,18x10R if you are ZCP or 18x8.5F,18x9.5R) and no coilovers but certainly zoomy struts/shocks. If you want to roll in STU or ESP, then have at it. My feeling is you would be Vette fodder in STU and might be competitive in ESP but then would need to be willing to seriously compromise the street nature of the car and spend gobs on A7's.

Ooops -- thought this was posted on M3post. Much of it applies. Just don't get to use as wide of wheels. sorry
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      04-30-2015, 06:01 PM   #3
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I would imagine it would be very difficult to make a non-M e9x 335i competitive, mostly because you can't fit any tires wider than 255 or 265 up front.

For a 3500-3600 lbs, slightly front heavy car, you really want something like a super sticky 275 or 285 tires up front to make the front end bits in those rapid maneuver. It would be nearly impossible to beat a Vett, as those cars have lower CG, at least 500lb lighter, more power, better weight distribution, and wider tires.

Road course is slightly different, as you have more room and time to load up the front with trail braking and eliminating some of the understeering characteristics of the chassis with your driving style.

Try a stiffer front sway bar, and stiffer spring and shock combo (Bilstein, Koni yellow paired with BMW performance springs). Add in M3 control arms if you want better steering feel.
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      04-30-2015, 07:07 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by z3papa View Post
If you want to avoid being frustrated, pick the class you want to build toward and stick to the allowances. Nothing is more frustrating that spending money and not improving relative to competition. With that said, I'd either build to FStreet (means 18x9F,18x10R if you are ZCP or 18x8.5F,18x9.5R) and no coilovers but certainly zoomy struts/shocks. If you want to roll in STU or ESP, then have at it. My feeling is you would be Vette fodder in STU and might be competitive in ESP but then would need to be willing to seriously compromise the street nature of the car and spend gobs on A7's.

Ooops -- thought this was posted on M3post. Much of it applies. Just don't get to use as wide of wheels. sorry

FYI... for street prepared we fall into ASP not ESP.

On a related note, has anyone noticed that tires in street and street prepared classes must have a minimum tread wear rating of 200 this year? No more race tires!
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      04-30-2015, 09:09 PM   #5
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Guys thanks for the info. I agree its a fine line between having fun w your buddies and being competetive. Like I said im not looking to win in a 335i. You realize real quick that the car really isnt geared towards these types of events. Its still a very fun way to spend some time w/ my car buddies and I want to keep it that way. I have had years of competetive road and offroad racing motorcycles so its important for me to just keep it fun and keep it casual. Once it gets taken too seriously the fun can be drained away. For this reason I am mainly just interested in running w/ the local porsche club where I fall into the RWD group. Im still pulled in too many directions w the bikes to have another wallet draining hobby.

Im just mainly looking at some things to make my daily driver better at auto x than it is stock. Im just wondering about some of the lesser expensive coils paired w M3 control arms and if they would be better than what I have got currently and the rim fitment up front on a 9.5" wide wheel. Coils would give me some height adjustability that the Konis would not (I dont think) I really wish Apex made a 18x9.0 in a profile 3 in the Arc 8 but they dont so if I want to have the wheels look the same a 9.5 front will have to work.

Im going to need some camber up front on a 9.5 most likely so that means camber plates but some of the coil setups have camber plates included keeping the cost down but I dont know if that stuff is total garbage??

I fully understand beating Vettes is going to be a tough one but at the rate my buddy in the c6 Grand Sport collects cones it would be fun to get a little closer to him time wise.

Last edited by C Minus; 04-30-2015 at 09:19 PM.
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      04-30-2015, 11:52 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JC335xi View Post
FYI... for street prepared we fall into ASP not ESP.

On a related note, has anyone noticed that tires in street and street prepared classes must have a minimum tread wear rating of 200 this year? No more race tires!
I noticed. Switched to Nitto NT05

Quote:
Originally Posted by C Minus View Post
Guys thanks for the info. I agree its a fine line between having fun w your buddies and being competetive. Like I said im not looking to win in a 335i. You realize real quick that the car really isnt geared towards these types of events. Its still a very fun way to spend some time w/ my car buddies and I want to keep it that way. I have had years of competetive road and offroad racing motorcycles so its important for me to just keep it fun and keep it casual. Once it gets taken too seriously the fun can be drained away. For this reason I am mainly just interested in running w/ the local porsche club where I fall into the RWD group. Im still pulled in too many directions w the bikes to have another wallet draining hobby.

Im just mainly looking at some things to make my daily driver better at auto x than it is stock. Im just wondering about some of the lesser expensive coils paired w M3 control arms and if they would be better than what I have got currently and the rim fitment up front on a 9.5" wide wheel. Coils would give me some height adjustability that the Konis would not (I dont think) I really wish Apex made a 18x9.0 in a profile 3 in the Arc 8 but they dont so if I want to have the wheels look the same a 9.5 front will have to work.

Im going to need some camber up front on a 9.5 most likely so that means camber plates but some of the coil setups have camber plates included keeping the cost down but I dont know if that stuff is total garbage??

I fully understand beating Vettes is going to be a tough one but at the rate my buddy in the c6 Grand Sport collects cones it would be fun to get a little closer to him time wise.
Granted some will knock DC Racing coilovers, they're not too bad if you order through them. They do custom spring rates and if I'm not mistaken valving too. I have a friend that have a custom set on his daily e39 530i and e63 M6 and love them. FWIW, there are some championship drift drivers with this kit... granted on a different platform.
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      05-01-2015, 01:49 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C Minus View Post

Im just mainly looking at some things to make my daily driver better at auto x than it is stock.
A better driver will make up for far more than whatever you have in mind. Seriously.

There's a 335i driver that consistently places fastest time of day in their stock 335i that post in here. I'd pick his brains if I were you.
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      05-01-2015, 07:35 AM   #8
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I was mistaken on ESP but am not re: 200TW vs. r-comps as they have specifically excepted 13.3.A.1 which is the direct reference to 200TW. Otherwise, there are ongoing Nat'l events in SP classes where every competitor running illegal including Pro Solo events where classes are cross competed with Street and ST classes. Hooisers are alive and well in SP classes. As for ASP, good luck running there.
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      05-01-2015, 07:51 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by z3papa View Post
I was mistaken on ESP but am not re: 200TW vs. r-comps as they have specifically excepted 13.3.A.1 which is the direct reference to 200TW. Otherwise, there are ongoing Nat'l events in SP classes where every competitor running illegal including Pro Solo events where classes are cross competed with Street and ST classes. Hooisers are alive and well in SP classes. As for ASP, good luck running there.
Just checked and you are indeed correct. I got excited as I only compete casually in local events and have no interest is picking up a second set of wheels with r-comps.

Given my goals I am having great luck in ASP, the only guy that generally gives me much trouble is a Cayman with Hoosiers.
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      05-01-2015, 08:27 AM   #10
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On a second glance, at least the E90/92 M3 is ESP per April Fast Track -- may not help the E90 335i though.


"Street Prepared
#12572 E9X M3 move to BSP
Remove the following line from ASP and add to ESP:
BMW
M3 (2007-13)
Note: The SPAC feels that this car would not be an overdog in ESP."

Seems that while the 335i could amp up boost, it would still be a PITA to really run a full SP allotment.
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      05-01-2015, 09:41 AM   #11
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Didnt read the wall of text above but.


Im running an 18x9.5 up front with 255/35 Michelin PSS's -2.8* camber

I am on Fortune Auto 500 Coilovers with Swift/Radial Bearing Upgrade.

I dd this car and would highly recommend those coilovers, especially over BC.
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      05-04-2015, 06:13 PM   #12
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I just tried out my new tire and wheel setup, 17x9 +30 Apex Arc-8 with Yokohama AD08R, this weekend at autocross practice (~20 runs). I'm pretty happy with the fit and reduced under steer at turn in. The front camber is at 1.5 and could definitely use more next time. There is still quite a bit of body roll even with 394 lbs/in springs in the front.
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      05-04-2015, 06:34 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by neoduffer View Post
I just tried out my new tire and wheel setup, 17x9 +30 Apex Arc-8 with Yokohama AD08R, this weekend at autocross practice (~20 runs). I'm pretty happy with the fit and reduced under steer at turn in. The front camber is at 1.5 and could definitely use more next time. There is still quite a bit of body roll even with 394 lbs/in springs in the front.
Front M3 sway bar should do the trick for you. You can go with either E92 or slightly stiffer E93 bar, depending on your preference.
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      05-05-2015, 03:21 PM   #14
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Front M3 sway bar should do the trick for you. You can go with either E92 or slightly stiffer E93 bar, depending on your preference.
I was thinking the same thing. I have a m3 sway bar waiting for install and now have more incentive to get it done.
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      05-05-2015, 09:53 PM   #15
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My motto is buy once, cry once.

With that being said, if you really want to get serious I'd invest into dual adjustable coilovers. I run TCK Dual Adjustables with #400 fronts and #700 rears.

If you want any serious performance you're going to have to get a stupid alignment. For example I run -3.6* worth of camber up front, camber plates completely maxed out. And honestly the car needs more camber than that.

However, with that being said when a car is setup correctly it'll be a hoot to drive. My car from this past weekend picking up the inside wheels

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      05-06-2015, 12:19 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Kgolf31 View Post
My motto is buy once, cry once.

With that being said, if you really want to get serious I'd invest into dual adjustable coilovers. I run TCK Dual Adjustables with #400 fronts and #700 rears.

If you want any serious performance you're going to have to get a stupid alignment. For example I run -3.6* worth of camber up front, camber plates completely maxed out. And honestly the car needs more camber than that.

However, with that being said when a car is setup correctly it'll be a hoot to drive. My car from this past weekend picking up the inside wheels

What compression and rebound settings do you usually run on your car? I know your car is 200-400lbs lighter than mine, but we have near identical chassis setup (400lb/in front and 700lb/in rear springs, w/ TC Kline DA shocks).
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      05-06-2015, 12:24 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Cloud9blue View Post
What compression and rebound settings do you usually run on your car? I know your car is 200-400lbs lighter than mine, but we have near identical chassis setup (400lb/in front and 700lb/in rear springs, w/ TC Kline DA shocks).
That particular event I ran this:

Front:

Rebound: 1.25 turns from soft
Compression: 9 clicks from soft

Rear:

Rebound: 1.75 turns from soft
Compression: 11 clicks from soft
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      05-06-2015, 12:33 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C Minus View Post
Ok so I did another auto x and had a blast. Pretty fun way to spend an afternoon w some buddies.

I'm stock sport suspension and run flats. The car is a handful. I feel like I'm driving a Cadillac w all the body roll. Haha ok it's not that bad but it's not great either.

So I'm thinking of running some 18x9.5 apex arc 8's. 9.5 front and rear so the concave match. They don't offer a profile 3 in a 9.0 like they do w the 17" options.

I'm not sure about running 255/35 square??? I would like to run a wider tire out back to help w traction. Anything smaller than a 255 up front is going to look stretched on a 9.5. Not my thing.

So coilovers. Where to begin? There are some BC racing coil overs on ebay that have camber plates included. I'm probably going to need to have the ability to dial in some negative camber w a 9.5 w a 255/35 up front.

Are these coilovers just junk? I'm not looking to spend thousands and thousands on coilovers but I am mainly looking for a way to drop the car, keep it flat through hard cornering and just generally be a nice upgrade in handling from stock suspension. Im not trying to have the most bad ass auto x car or track car. I just would lIke it to be more competetive w some of the other cars. I have a buddy w a c6 w sticky rubber who routinely is 3 seconds a lap faster. Are there any other coilovers I should consider? KW's seem popular but is a big part of the cost the name? They are expensive when compared to other offerings.

Anyway would be curious to hear your thoughts. Oh sway bars? Dif lockdown? LSD would be fun and it also might be on the horizon.

Most likely you need coilovers and lsd. Maybe the best option is to buy pre-owned quality coilovers. I have JRZ with Swift springs and the car is a blast to drive. LSD and DSC/DTC off is the way to have fun!
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      05-06-2015, 06:28 PM   #19
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Holy sh$t I post get distracted then come back and realize I made a post. haha

Anyway some great info in here. Its appreciated. Its tough to sift through all the coilover spring info. Most people seem to pick a brand and spring rate and leave it and are convinced their setup is the best vs. finding people experimenting w various makes and rate and comparing their experiences on the same car. I agree that driver mod is going to be the biggest thing for improvement to start.

Again thanks for the info all. Now if I could find some good used coilovers and put the savings from buying new towards the lsd and or wheels and tires I will be set.
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      05-06-2015, 10:28 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kgolf31 View Post
My motto is buy once, cry once.

With that being said, if you really want to get serious I'd invest into dual adjustable coilovers. I run TCK Dual Adjustables with #400 fronts and #700 rears.

If you want any serious performance you're going to have to get a stupid alignment. For example I run -3.6* worth of camber up front, camber plates completely maxed out. And honestly the car needs more camber than that.

However, with that being said when a car is setup correctly it'll be a hoot to drive. My car from this past weekend picking up the inside wheels

Just now seeing your pic. Was on work computer earlier. Wow your car looks so flat through that corner! That has to be so much fun to drive.
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      05-07-2015, 11:18 AM   #21
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Just now seeing your pic. Was on work computer earlier. Wow your car looks so flat through that corner! That has to be so much fun to drive.
It's not that bad

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      05-10-2015, 08:15 PM   #22
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Ground Control, TCKline, BC, AST - All brands I've heard great things about, I woukd lean towards GC and TK because of price and performance. BC is good too, but I think it could be considered a 'cheaper' damper.
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