21 posts in this topic

Hello All,

 

I've been pondering this for a while now and whilst I absolutely adore my Bavarian Beauty, I feel she is slightly under powered being a 520i. I'm thinking of a few reasonably sensible mods to get the best out of her without it being too over the top. My ideas are:

 

  • Induction Kit
  • Remap
  • Brakes
  • Lowered (slightly)
  • Leather Seat and door card conversion (not urgent).

 

Has anyone here had any experience of doing this and what are general thoughts?

 

Many thanks

 

Jamie

NuckingFuts likes this

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Hello and welcome! I think the general consensus is that nothing 'reasonably sensible' is gonna get you any noticeable power gain on petrol E39s. You therefore live with your slow but smooth 520, or simply get a 525, 530... instead. Unless your 520 is some kind of minter, family heirloom, awesome rare colour, rare options, etc and you really can't consider swapping it, it's just not worth trying to make it faster when there are faster factory models easily available. And they probably come with the other stuff too - bigger brakes, leather, lower - depending on the model.

NuckingFuts and Jammin0990 like this

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^^^^^^^^

 

Maybe not what you were expecting/wanting to see, but that is realistic and sensible advice.

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50 minutes ago, Jammin0990 said:

Hello All,

 

I've been pondering this for a while now and whilst I absolutely adore my Bavarian Beauty, I feel she is slightly under powered being a 520i. I'm thinking of a few reasonably sensible mods to get the best out of her without it being too over the top. My ideas are:

 

  • Induction Kit
  • Remap
  • Brakes
  • Lowered (slightly)
  • Leather Seat and door card conversion (not urgent).

 

Has anyone here had any experience of doing this and what are general thoughts?

 

Many thanks

 

Jamie

 

Agree with what @Liam79 has said

 

For any of the petrol cars a remap isn't pointless, but it's not exactly worth it either; justifying cost vs results etc. But, it's a personal choice that that persons £££ to do whatever they want with!

 

Re induction kit; I'd stick with a decent panel filter and leave the OEM box alone; it does a very good job

 

Brakes; grooved/C hook type discs with more aggressive pads (EBC Yellowstuff or Redstuff) along with braided lines such as HEL will give you better braking and a better braking feel; something I'd have no issues in suggesting

 

Lowered; again, personal choice. For the E39, personally, I'd go with coilovers as you can then have the ride height set to how you want it (JOM and Pro-Sport at the cheaper end, D2 and BC coilovers about as good bang for your buck IMO, and KW/Bilstein for the top end)

 

The rest is all personal choice... 

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Excellent,

 

Thank you! In hindsight, I probably should have waited out for a more powerful model but I may tweak what I have ever so slightly and will maybe save the pennies for an M5 LOL.

 

So at this rate, I might be able to afford one in 2070 but hey ho. If you want it, you gotta stay true am I right? :P

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If your car feels a bit sluggish, try getting a Terraclean done, I did it on my diesel and noticed a slight difference but the engine sounds a lot smoother afterwards. The guy said you get more results of a petrol... Something to think about

 

Sent from my Moto G (5) using Tapatalk

 

 

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+1 on a terraclean. Epic results on my 530i and although I'd agree with Liam, I understand that you can only do with what you have.

 

I'd do the usual exhaust, air filters, service using good quality platinum plugs etc and a carbon/terraclean.

 

Won't gain much but will definitely improve what you have.

 

I'm running pro-sport coils and like how they look and handle, unfortunately dampening is a bit on the hard side, but get what you pay for at £200 a set.

 

 

 

 

 

Sent from my EVA-L09 using Tapatalk

 

 

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 I can only agree with what has already been suggested. Also, regarding re-maps, I had my 535i re-mapped with didn't seem to make any noticeable difference to the overall performance but it did seem to alter the torque curve so the car felt like it had a bit more get up and go at lower revs, the car had a k&n panel filter and a cat back back stainless exhaust fitted before the remap which probably gave more power gains than the re-map (but not a lot!). The re-map also seemed to do something with the gearbox settings as it wanted to be in a lower gear all the time after the re-map, great if you want to make progress but a bit annoying if you're just plodding about. 

Edited by NWJW
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What year is your car? If the car is that good/rust free ect then why not drop a 3.0 in? 

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Trouble is it ends up being harder to insure and. It's more money than just buying a 530.

 

 

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23 hours ago, duncan-uk said:

Trouble is it ends up being harder to insure and. It's more money than just buying a 530.

 

 

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It depends how good the body is. I very nearly re-shelled my 530d into a rust free champagne edition that my friend was breaking not so long ago, but it would of taken too much time sadly.

 

I'm still thinking maybe I should have just gone for it. 

 

Point is if the car is good then an engine swap shouldn't be much of a big deal, if you end up with exactly what you want. 

 

 

 

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Always reasons but having spent a lot of money getting limited gains from an m30 I can confirm you're better off starting with the best you can. Sure if it is literally the holy grail car it makes sense but otherwise (to my mind) it doesn't stack up when you can buy a 530 or 540 already.

 

So you either accept it's a 520 or trade up imo.

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It's a fair cop I suppose. As I've already mentioned I love my car to bits so may just look to get her fixed up and tarted up with some aesthetic things (really just upgrading the interior a bit) and detail the life out of her!

 

Maybe one day when I post "Guys I bought an M5", you can all say "told you so!" :P

 

Anyway, muchas gracias for the tips and well even a 520 has it's place in the BMW world so I'd like that to be remembered if I turn up to any meets :P

 

Danke

 

Jamie

d_a_n1979 likes this

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Wise choice I think. For the record I don't think anyone knocked the 520 just that it's probably not worth tuning. It's a sweet 6cyl. What's not to like

 

 

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I definitely have respect for a 520i, I briefly owned one that had covered 241k, and ran beautifully, and the guy I got it from owned it from new! 

 

Its now living a new life in Lithuania of all places. 

 

It'd be good to see some pics once she's all detailed up. 

Edited by LukeH
Jammin0990 likes this

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Mine has just ticked over to 100k and she does run very smoothly. Just a bit of a rough idle sometimes if she hasn't been started in a day or two but otherwise flawless.

 

I work with a Lithuanian guy who's also a bit of a BMW nut haha. 

 

Yeah, I shall post a few pics. I've re stocked on a few items so will get stuck in when I have a good day for it :)

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A left-field alternative but you'd probably be better off investing in the driver, rather than the car: advanced lessons would cost no more than a remap and would benefit every journey you make: quicker, smoother and with less wear-and-tear on the car.

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 There's nowt wrong with a 520i, BMW could have stuck a four pot in and been done with it, but no, even the 'baby' of the range got a straight six. And it had more power than quite a few larger capacity 6 cylinder engines that other manufacturers were putting into their 'performance' models at the time. :) 

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 There's nowt wrong with a 520i, BMW could have stuck a four pot in and been done with it, but no, even the 'baby' of the range got a straight six. And it had more power than quite a few larger capacity 6 cylinder engines that other manufacturers were putting into their 'performance' models at the time.  

They did make a 4 cylinder, only in LHD though

 

 

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 Yep, if we're talking about the diesels then the m47 engine was available for a few years, as said though we never got it here.

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