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      05-21-2019, 08:37 PM   #1
Timothi2
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Dream project start!! E91 335i Touring w/ n54

Here comes another one... I absolutely love wagons, and my dream has always been to build a high horsepower sleeper (maybe not so sleeper) wagon. After spending months researching on possible platforms/makes/models for my project, I came across Greg555's thread with his build and I became really interested in the idea. Fast forward a year or two, and here I am with one 2012 328i Touring, and one 2009 335i. LET THE FUN BEGIN!

Mechanically, the swap should be entirely straightforward for me. Both vehicles are LCI, and I've worked with cars plenty in the past. My cousin and I pulled his Miata engine multiple times (due to him breaking something out of sheer stupidity usually, but man do we have some great memories together), and recently we had to replace his n54 on his e92 due to a piston going AWOL : . I'm no stranger to redoing the entire front end of a car, and since both cars are RWD, everything should bolt right up from the sedan to the wagon. Unfortunately, both cars are autotragic as it's really difficult to find a perfect donor, but I do have plans to eventually convert it to a manual.

In terms of what will be swapped over to the wagon:
-Complete engine, transmission, driveline, differential, axles, hubs, brakes, subframes, essentially everything that could be considered an upgrade.
-iDrive dash from the e90 335, I don't have iDrive in the wagon and know I'm going to heavily regret not swapping it in, especially if it's right there.

I've started to research all the coding that I will need to do once the car is finished, and I believe I'll be able to do most of it myself. My cousin has also messed around with coding a few things in his e92 and has been successful, so I've got him to help me out as well.

Pics of both cars are below, I'll do my best to keep this thread as updated as possible on the progress of the build. The goal is to have it done by the end of the summer, hopefully sooner! I've got a lot of guys who are willing to help me out, so as long as I don't run into any major setbacks it should be done relatively quickly.

BTW, if anyone wants parts off of the 335i, PM me. I need the money for bolt-ons hahaha
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      05-21-2019, 08:50 PM   #2
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So there is actually more of a chance to get more hp out of a 330 then a 335 in my opinion
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      05-21-2019, 08:57 PM   #3
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      05-21-2019, 09:41 PM   #4
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Awesome!

EDIT: my statements about the N55/54 are wrong.

Continue on with your awesomeness, OP.

Last edited by tlow98; 05-22-2019 at 01:36 AM..
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      05-21-2019, 09:48 PM   #5
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      05-22-2019, 09:22 AM   #6
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FWIW on the coding, if you look at the cost to time ratio, BimmerGeeks can probably do most of it and save you the headaches/research time.
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      05-22-2019, 09:55 AM   #7
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Sweet!
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      05-22-2019, 09:56 AM   #8
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I recognize that e91 off of copart! Nice spec!
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      05-22-2019, 11:15 AM   #9
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Awesome project. One consideration-- I'd skip over the iDrive. I have both an e91 and an e90 M3, and I wouldn't buy one with navigation/iDrive as platform gets older and technology innovates.

The enthusiast crowd takes this approach.
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      05-22-2019, 12:27 PM   #10
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That panel gap on the rear door of the wagon is a bit scary. Looks like a fun project if you get it to completion. Make it manual its the perfect car!
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      05-22-2019, 12:31 PM   #11
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That panel gap on the rear door of the wagon is a bit scary. Looks like a fun project if you get it to completion. Make it manual its the perfect car!
Door is not closed.
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      05-22-2019, 01:17 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostofsenna View Post
Awesome project. One consideration-- I'd skip over the iDrive. I have both an e91 and an e90 M3, and I wouldn't buy one with navigation/iDrive as platform gets older and technology innovates.

The enthusiast crowd takes this approach.
I'm an enthusiast and I disagree. Lol I think OP pretty much defines enthusiast, with what is being undertaken here.

There's nothing that dates the E90 interior quite like the murky screen of the base stereo and its layout of basic buttons. The pre-LCI iDrive is wholly outdated, yes, and it's slow.... but hey at least it's a base that can be upgraded to very modern standards if desired. It's also a great dash layout, the double bubble, that was so lamented in its departure for the "tacked on" tablet-style displays that the industry has migrated towards.

The LCI iDrive, the CIC remained in production through 2014 in a few models, and it's really just as responsive as anything else out there today. The screen resolution is great, the nav looks good, and the interface is awesome albeit lacking gesture control and surround-view cameras etc. The touch-sensitive multifunction preset buttons continue into brand new BMWs and are still praised as being a great idea. I think it's crazy to dismiss the whole thing just because "maybe" in a few more years it'll date the car. If anything, it's likely that there will be further development in the world of retrofits, bringing lower costs and more modern solutions should the CIC get really aged.

Awesome work to the OP.
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      05-22-2019, 01:23 PM   #13
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With the iDrive he also has the option to upgrade his to something like Justin Buice's.
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      05-22-2019, 01:31 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostofsenna View Post
Awesome project. One consideration-- I'd skip over the iDrive. I have both an e91 and an e90 M3, and I wouldn't buy one with navigation/iDrive as platform gets older and technology innovates.

The enthusiast crowd takes this approach.
Couldn’t agree more. I love the simplicity and clean look of good old buttons and dials. I was very happy my E90 did not have iDrive.

I also came from a 2017 with iDrive 5. If you haven’t used iDrive 5 or newer on a daily basis as I had for quite some time, it would probably be easier to live with the E90 iDrive system.

S4NoMore makes a few good points about touch-sensitive buttons etc. IMO, those ancillary things are nice, but it would still be a toss-up as to whether I would swap over the iDrive just to get them.

Then again, I’m not the one doing this delicious swap mod most of us only dream of. I also don’t recall OP asking me what I thought, but hey, that didn’t stop me from chipping in my two cents .

This project is so cool. Will be watching!
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Last edited by e90yyc; 05-22-2019 at 01:38 PM..
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      05-22-2019, 01:42 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S4NoMore View Post
I'm an enthusiast and I disagree. Lol I think OP pretty much defines enthusiast, with what is being undertaken here.

There's nothing that dates the E90 interior quite like the murky screen of the base stereo and its layout of basic buttons. The pre-LCI iDrive is wholly outdated, yes, and it's slow.... but hey at least it's a base that can be upgraded to very modern standards if desired. It's also a great dash layout, the double bubble, that was so lamented in its departure for the "tacked on" tablet-style displays that the industry has migrated towards.

The LCI iDrive, the CIC remained in production through 2014 in a few models, and it's really just as responsive as anything else out there today. The screen resolution is great, the nav looks good, and the interface is awesome albeit lacking gesture control and surround-view cameras etc. The touch-sensitive multifunction preset buttons continue into brand new BMWs and are still praised as being a great idea. I think it's crazy to dismiss the whole thing just because "maybe" in a few more years it'll date the car. If anything, it's likely that there will be further development in the world of retrofits, bringing lower costs and more modern solutions should the CIC get really aged.

Awesome work to the OP.
Was not stating OP is not an enthusiast, just sourcing that it is a common approach from the enthusiast perspective-- less bells and whistles survive the test of time in the areas of reliability and optics.

And come on, you can't compare electronics originally designed and developed in 2005 for MY 2006+ to keep up with current tech. It's 2019.
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      05-22-2019, 02:39 PM   #16
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Quote:
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And come on, you can't compare electronics originally designed and developed in 2005 for MY 2006+ to keep up with current tech. It's 2019.
But I think I just did
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      05-22-2019, 03:56 PM   #17
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Subbed... I also bought an e91 wagon to do this at some point.

I bought my wagon without the iDrive specifically... but now I have a dash in my garage and I am probably going to retrofit NBT after I can source everything. In hindsight if I had known the relative ease of retrofitting newer systems into the older cars and the success of others had in doing it, I would have just found an iDrive car to begin, with the intention of upgrading.
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      05-22-2019, 05:54 PM   #18
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Wow... I was not expecting this much attention hahaha. In response to all the comments about iDrive, I'm just doing it because I'll have all the parts and it'll be more of a challenge for me. I also like the way the iDrive dash looks much more than the base model dash. Also for those that don't know, iDrive was updated to CIC in 09, so my 335i had CIC nav which I've messed with before in my cousin's car and really liked. I might do an NBT retrofit later on in the future, but for now the money will be better spent on bolt-ons and some exterior mods *cough* *cough* 1m bumper and Msport rear end *cough* *cough*

Unfortunately, Copart ripped my e90's front bumper while they were getting the car from the yard....... AAGGGHHHHHH. After a lot of calling and dealing with them over the phone, I told them they had better refund me at least $500 for a new bumper, as I bought the car for the front end parts, or take the car back. They decided to take the easy way out and I'm getting a check with my money back... So the search for a good donor continues, maybe I could get the same 335 for cheaper next time with a damaged bumper, but we'll see. Got my eye on a manual 2010 Manual Msport 335i with 77k, but that one might go for a bit out of my budget. I'll post updates soon as I get them!
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      05-22-2019, 06:12 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tisdrew View Post
FWIW on the coding, if you look at the cost to time ratio, BimmerGeeks can probably do most of it and save you the headaches/research time.
Yes, this is very true. But I'm in this for the project and to learn everything that I can. My absolute dream would be an f31 wagon with a swap to a more tuneable engine, the easiest would most likely be an n55 from an f30 335. However, the coding on an f31 would be much more difficult, and if I can figure out the coding on this project, maybe the f31 wagon with an n55 would be somewhat feasible. If I do run into issues and can't figure it out, I'll definitely reach out and have someone help me code it. But I've got all summer until the next school year starts so we'll see how everything goes!
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      05-22-2019, 06:32 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothi2 View Post

Unfortunately, Copart ripped my e90's front bumper while they were getting the car from the yard....... AAGGGHHHHHH. After a lot of calling and dealing with them over the phone, I told them they had better refund me at least $500 for a new bumper, as I bought the car for the front end parts, or take the car back. They decided to take the easy way out and I'm getting a check with my money back...
LOL what a bunch of idiots... I'm sorry to hear that. Best of luck with finding its replacement!
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      05-23-2019, 11:04 AM   #21
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Arenít new bumpers like $180 painted/shipped on eBay?

Sure, itís not oem, but this is a project car after all...
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      05-23-2019, 12:20 PM   #22
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Arenít new bumpers like $180 painted/shipped on eBay?

Sure, itís not oem, but this is a project car after all...
Link? That seems pretty cheap.
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