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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Powertrain and Drivetrain Discussions > NA Engine (non-turbo) / Drivetrain / Exhaust Modifications > Is anyone running N54 Intake Manifold?



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      04-16-2018, 07:14 AM   #1
Biginboca
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Is anyone running N54 Intake Manifold?

I did some searching and only found one person (BPC Customer) who was working on it and then seems like he swapped back to a 3 Stage.

I assume BPC Alice is running a N54 Intake Manifold?

I’m really looking for reports from a N/A application. Would love to see what the shape of a dyno of a N54 manifold on a N52 looks like.

Also does anyone know the ID of a N54 Throttle Body? Would the user swap throttle bodies along with a manifold swap?

I’m running a WCR Big Bore Throttle Body currently but was curious if the N54 could be a cheap and available BBTB for those who still have stock throttle bodies.
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      04-16-2018, 08:08 AM   #2
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www.1addicts.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1451616

N54 TB is larger than the N52, but has a provision on the side that needs to be blocked off. Also, the ID is smaller than your big bore.
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      04-16-2018, 09:12 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taskmaster View Post
www.1addicts.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1451616

N54 TB is larger than the N52, but has a provision on the side that needs to be blocked off. Also, the ID is smaller than your big bore.
Dang that looks great. Iíve already been in touch with Bob Iím definitely pursuing this!
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      04-16-2018, 09:18 AM   #4
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I'm running the N54 intake, but my N52 is in an E30 swap. Just have a few details to sort out before I should be running. I'll have to compare the throttle bodies, as they appear to be the same size. The vacuum inlet on the side of the N54 throttle needs to be used for the CVV system, as the N54 intake does not have an inlet on the manifold to plug into. Also, if you have an early model E90 with the slightly rounded throttle body wiring plug, the newer tb has a more square connector that will need to be adapted.
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      04-16-2018, 09:26 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwlo View Post
I'm running the N54 intake, but my N52 is in an E30 swap. Just have a few details to sort out before I should be running. I'll have to compare the throttle bodies, as they appear to be the same size. The vacuum inlet on the side of the N54 throttle needs to be used for the CVV system, as the N54 intake does not have an inlet on the manifold to plug into. Also, if you have an early model E90 with the slightly rounded throttle body wiring plug, the newer tb has a more square connector that will need to be adapted.
Is there a model year or version of the N54 manifold that is ďmore idealĒ for this swap?
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      04-16-2018, 09:56 AM   #6
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BPC has posted several dynos of the N54 intake on an N52. Basically you trade a little low end (vs the 3 stage) for additional top end. If you were coming from a single stage, you probably would only gain power and torque (assuming other mods and a tune).
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      04-16-2018, 10:43 AM   #7
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I have N54 manifold on N53. I just installed big bore TB from RiotRacing. I had to route gas tank ventilation to airbox because this TB doesnít have connector for the vent hose. I didnít go to dyno yet but according to Awron I have 276 PS. If you compare my lap time to other cars itís not bad. Iím in second place (325i). Unfortunately I had to quit after first round because my engine wasnít running on all cylinders. I thought I had some bad coils but after I switch the car off and on again it was running normally. I thing that the problem started when I hit the rev limiter. (I have new aluminum flywheel)
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      04-16-2018, 10:54 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BudVlad View Post
I have N54 manifold on N53. I just installed big bore TB from RiotRacing. I had to route gas tank ventilation to airbox because this TB doesnít have connector for the vent hose. I didnít go to dyno yet but according to Awron I have 276 PS. If you compare my lap time to other cars itís not bad. Iím in second place (325i). Unfortunately I had to quit after first round because my engine wasnít running on all cylinders. I thought I had some bad coils but after I switch the car off and on again it was running normally. I thing that the problem started when I hit the rev limiter. (I have new aluminum flywheel)
Whoa, awesome. Keep us posted
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      04-16-2018, 11:50 AM   #9
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Couldnít I just drill and install a port into the n54 manifold for the vacuum line from the valve cover? Iíd rather run the WCR throttle body than a N54 just to have the port.
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      04-16-2018, 11:51 AM   #10
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Why stop at the OE N54 Manifold? There are aftermarket N54 manifolds that, presumably, will fit just as well.
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      04-16-2018, 11:53 AM   #11
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the point is it's cheap. if you want to spend more money, the N54 manifold isn't necessarily optimized for N/A - it just happens to bolt up fairly easily, and work a little better at high RPM where the resonance design of the 3-stage works against you.
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      04-16-2018, 12:09 PM   #12
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I bought a OEM N54 manifold they are cheaply available for $100 or less. Now wondering about that vacuum line on google images I found a pic of what looks to be an added port this is exactly what I was thinking I would do:



So here’s a question. Does anyone have any suggestions for what I can use for the vacuum line to the valve cover? I was thinking rubber fuel line but not sure if it will collapse under the vacuum. Thoughts?

Last edited by Biginboca; 04-16-2018 at 12:31 PM.
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      04-16-2018, 12:31 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Biginboca View Post
I bought a OEM N54 manifold they are cheaply available for $100 or less. Now wondering about that vacuum line on google images I found a pic of what looks to be an added port this is exactly what I was thinking I would do:



So here’s a question. Does anyone have any suggestions for what I can use for the vacuum line to the valve cover? I was thinking rubber fuel line but not sure if it will collapse under the vacuum. Thoughts?
Just an FYI the added port is to upgrade to the correct BOV line ID for the tial BOVs on the n54. 99% of people use the stock line and it is too small and does not react as fast as it should/is intended. Just if you were wondering why it was added.

I just drilled and tapped a fitting with a barb provision for a 1/4 ID line using a fitting like this: https://www.zoro.com/zoro-select-hos...p0/i/G1502916/



Used some 5M epoxy on the threads to help it seal.

https://www.verociousmotorsports.com...ld-by-the-Foot <--This is what I use on my n54. The stock line that BMW uses with the braided cover is fine too. Not sure on the price tho.

You should be able to buy standard boring vacuum line by the foot at any normal autoparts store.

edit: I would install the vacuum line/port/fitting on the bottom of the manifold so it doesn't stick out and isn't so fugly like in the pic you posted. Don't forget to blow out the Im after drilling and tapping but before you insert the threaded barb. You may also not need as large a vacuum line/source.
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Originally Posted by TheAxiom
FYI - I don't drive hard at all. So I'm not interested in more clamping force when I won't use it. Even on my car, I take it easy. It's just too loud to be enjoyable.

Last edited by Torgus; 04-16-2018 at 01:24 PM.
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      04-16-2018, 01:06 PM   #14
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This is my setup for PCV and gas tank ventilation.
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      04-16-2018, 01:40 PM   #15
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Bud, on your setup with the pvc and gas evap vent....is there a third fitting that hooks to the intake, or are you venting it to atmosphere?
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      04-16-2018, 01:48 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwlo View Post
Bud, on your setup with the pvc and gas evap vent....is there a third fitting that hooks to the intake, or are you venting it to atmosphere?
PCV is connected to catch can (itís a bad idea to vent it into intake on DI engine). Gas tank vent is connected to air box.
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      04-16-2018, 07:00 PM   #17
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BudVlad Torgus How did you guys line up the throttle body inlet with the air box outlet from the MAF sensor? It looks like the n54 manifold points the throttle body inlet downwards?
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      04-16-2018, 07:19 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Biginboca View Post
BudVlad Torgus How did you guys line up the throttle body inlet with the air box outlet from the MAF sensor? It looks like the n54 manifold points the throttle body inlet downwards?
BPC was supposed to be making a kit for this - donít use a silicone hose and try to bend it. On the link I posted, you can clearly see it collapsing in - it may be the reason for that huge torque dip.
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      04-16-2018, 07:20 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Biginboca View Post
BudVlad Torgus How did you guys line up the throttle body inlet with the air box outlet from the MAF sensor? It looks like the n54 manifold points the throttle body inlet downwards?
It does point down.

Sorry if I was unclear. I never did this with my NA e90. Just wanted to explain why the pictures n54 intake was modded and how-to do it yourself to add a vacuum port.

My guess is you would need a custom pipe and or to get creative with your throttle body piping etc to use the n54 mani. I doubt the gains are worth it regarding the cost. Again, could be wrong. No n42 in my stable to look at.

IMO if you are going to go that far for an NA build I would have a custom forward facing tapered log intake manifold made with trumpets spaced off the manifolds floor fitted to a large throttle body. But like all intake mods if the head/cams are a restriction you can only do so much.

I say go turbo or go home I know that is not popular to hear but if you want hp it is the only choice. No off the shelf kits availible iirc.
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      04-16-2018, 07:32 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Torgus View Post
It does point down.

Sorry if I was unclear. I never did this with my NA e90. Just wanted to explain why the pictures n54 intake was modded and how-to do it yourself to add a vacuum port.

My guess is you would need a custom pipe and or to get creative with your throttle body piping etc to use the n54 mani. I doubt the gains are worth it regarding the cost. Again, could be wrong. No n42 in my stable to look at.

IMO if you are going to go that far for an NA build I would have a custom forward facing tapered log intake manifold made with trumpets spaced off the manifolds floor fitted to a large throttle body. But like all intake mods if the head/cams are a restriction you can only do so much.

I say go turbo or go home I know that is not popular to hear but if you want hp it is the only choice. No off the shelf kits availible iirc.
I appreciate your turbo sentiment but I’m pushing this onwards. I sourced a N54 manifold and already placed the order with BPC for the tune update. Will start working on this over the weekend.

When I spoke with BPC (Randall) he said the midrange torque loss was minimal. He felt the lower rpms pretty much similar power to the 3 stage. He said that after 4500 rpms it becomes a different beast, the N54 manifold is a game changer. He said he doesn’t know why more people aren’t pursuing this. So based on that feedback and that I’ll be into the whole upgrade for less than $200 I’m going forward.

I have no interest in turbo. No offense to those who are and I hope they enjoy their car as much as I do mine.

And I want to drop this dyno chart here from the thread that Taskmaster linked in post 2:

free image host

The power on the orange line all the way to 7500 makes this mod so worthwhile. I currently have a 3 stage and BPC tune and it feels like the red line exactly. Even though I have raised my rev limiter to 7500 I’m not making power up there. You can feel what that red line would show if you extrapolated it out to 7500, the power is falling fast.

It’s easy to see why Randall felt this would be a game changer. Making peak power for another 1000 rpms (6500-7500) and staying in a lower gear through that will substantially change the character and performance of the car I feel.

Last edited by Biginboca; 04-16-2018 at 07:45 PM.
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      04-16-2018, 07:48 PM   #21
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Chances are youíre making the same peak or higher - you wonít know without a dyno?
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      04-16-2018, 07:57 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taskmaster View Post
Chances are you’re making the same peak or higher - you won’t know without a dyno?
For me this mod wouldn’t be about more peak power. It’s about more time at peak. If I can make near peak power for 1000 rpms instead of like 300 rpms that will be a huge win.

Look at the dyno paying attention to the shape of the curve and look at the area under the dynos from 5000-7500. One has a big sharp peak with slopes, the other is like a table top. Even with the same peak power the table top would be better.

I firmly believe total area under the dyno matters more than a single high peak output, when both have the same peak number.

And where the rubber meats the road, when I’m running the car hard I’m only passing from 5500 rpms to 7500 rpms through each gear. That n54 dyno is especially sweet in that range.
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