Ownership Verified: '79 BMW E21 323i... with a 4L inline 6 for good measure.

SileNceR

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1998 BMW E39 540iA, 1979 BMW E21/4.0i
So it's been a while since I've posted here. I used to be pretty active in the Lens Flair thread in the Photography section, and probably still should be as it used to keep my photography pretty active.

Instead, I've spent a fair portion of my spare time over the last 3-4 years casually slaving away at this creation (and have blogged about the whole process over at www.e21build.com ):

I started with a pretty well bone stock 1979 BMW E21 323i in Resedagruen with a BBS bodykit, ROH Casino wheels, and a pretend Alpina rear reflector:




If you're interested in reading the blog from the very beginning (Warning: it will take some time, there are about 130 posts in all) then the first post is here: http://www.e21build.com/2010/03/car.html

Removed the original 2.3L 6 cylinder and 4spd Getrag manual gearbox:


Did a little bit of wiring:


Modified (poorly, I must say in hindsight!) the transmission tunnel:



As well as cutting away most of the radiator support:


Fitting the much bigger, 4L SOHC straight six from an AU Falcon (Australia) with a rather angry, large duration and lift cam.


Modified even more of the transmission tunnel:


Installed a fuel cell:


Made room for much larger factory falcon radiator:


Built some extractors: http://www.e21build.com/2014/03/extractors.html


Had a single piece tailshaft manufactured:


Did some driving...



Welded the diff, took it to the local drags (at the local airstrip!) and proceeded to break a CV joint.


Replaced that and that's where we stand now:


Anyway, anyone who wants to follow the build can continue to do so on the blog - again http://www.e21build.com
 

Hbriz

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That would make an awesome track car. Good work. Part of me hates that it looked like such a nice example, maybe too nice, to modify like this with but the end result is not bad at all.

A mate of mine has an E36 318i with a blown engine that he wants to put an LS2 into. I like the idea of a straight 6 more I think :)
 

Perc

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Australians and their inline sixes... :lol: :p

Interesting project! :thumbup:
 

Eunos_Cosmo

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How much power can those 4 liters make while remaining naturally aspirated?
 

SileNceR

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1998 BMW E39 540iA, 1979 BMW E21/4.0i
That would make an awesome track car. Good work. Part of me hates that it looked like such a nice example, maybe too nice, to modify like this with but the end result is not bad at all.

A mate of mine has an E36 318i with a blown engine that he wants to put an LS2 into. I like the idea of a straight 6 more I think :)
In hindsight I probably would have stuck with the original motor and left a lot more of the original wiring and interior intact, initially I was only planning on converting the original motor to use the ford engine management system but once I'd pulled the engine out, and had it sitting next to a falcon motor.... well the measuring tape came out :)

I think the straight six is a lot truer to the idea behind these cars, and in fact a 4 cylinder (like a Honda S2000 motor) might be even better, considering E30 M3 was only a 4 cyl as was the Mercedes 190E Cosworth it was created in response to.

Ultimately, I don't think the weight balance will have changed much from the original motor (inline six, overhead cam, alloy head with iron block for BOTH motors) but then the LS motors are light enough to not cause dramas either, and will probably be quite a bit easier to fit.

We did try to sell the car before I started this process, so the other alternative was for it to go to scrap. Ultimately I think personally that it's better for it to end up this way than just being consigned to the crusher.

- - - Updated - - -

How much power can those 4 liters make while remaining naturally aspirated?
Up around the 200kw @ the wheels.
 

Hbriz

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Definitely a much better outcome than the crusher. And better than some kid turning it into some stanceworks rat rod. Which is what happened to my fairly immaculate pre-facelift E30 after I sold it.

It still looks gorgeous. I love those wheels too.
 

SileNceR

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1998 BMW E39 540iA, 1979 BMW E21/4.0i
Whoops. For proof of ownership, I've written my forum name on the windscreen with chalk marker.



- - - Updated - - -

Washed all of the cars we own on the weekend. I think we need to sell a couple :-/ (we being my wife and I):

 

Brabham

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Really nice e21 you have there. It looks lovely with that bodykit and rims! It is nice that some people do some rarer engine swaps on these old Beemers, because there is enough m30 or m50 swaps allready.
 

DaBoom

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That would make an awesome track car. Good work. Part of me hates that it looked like such a nice example, maybe too nice, to modify like this with but the end result is not bad at all.

A mate of mine has an E36 318i with a blown engine that he wants to put an LS2 into. I like the idea of a straight 6 more I think :)

Pretty much what I thought as well, as the engine is the heart and soul of a car for me. But yeah, nice project, and not putting an LS engine in it is a huge plus. :D
 

SileNceR

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More info on the Fairmont please! :p
Hah, I like that you picked it out of all those cars ;)

Nothing too special, it was the wife's daily driver until we got the Liberty (Subaru Legacy for the non Australian members)...

163,000kms, engine wise it's stock - factory tickford LPG
It's got KYB AGX adjustable shocks all round, King Spring Superlow Springs, and a whiteline adjustable front swaybar set to equivalent of 32mm... so it handles well, even if it doesn't accellerate too hard....

It's also for sale ;)
 

Hbriz

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How much do you want for it? I've toyed with the idea of picking up an EF Fairmont on gas for a while as a cheap runaround... Sounds like a good set up for handling, gotta love the boat handling of stock EFs :p
 

SileNceR

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I'd like around $2500 due to the low kays and good mechanical condition, and given the $$ of suspension stuff in there that I could remove if I could really be bothered... lol

You think stock EF's handle like a boat - try one with the added weight of the LPG tank up high :-/
 

SileNceR

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Here's a shot from before I put the front bumper back on:



Hbriz, I've got a few more pics of the Fairmont with the 17" wheels I used to have on my EB (which the motor in the E21 came out of) - I'd sell it with those wheels thrown in since they'll be of no use to me once the car is gone:



 

Hbriz

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You tempt me... would you take a Saab as a trade in? :lol:

I have an unashamed love for E-series Falcons. Well pretty much any Falcon for that matter, actually... I nearly bought a pristine one-owner XE GL wagon, it had 50,000km on it and the red paint was as bright and shiny as when it left the factory. Unfortunately without a garage to keep such a car in, I feel like I should stick to rougher examples that I wouldn't mind leaving outside.
 

SileNceR

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1998 BMW E39 540iA, 1979 BMW E21/4.0i
You tempt me... would you take a Saab as a trade in? :lol:

I have an unashamed love for E-series Falcons. Well pretty much any Falcon for that matter, actually... I nearly bought a pristine one-owner XE GL wagon, it had 50,000km on it and the red paint was as bright and shiny as when it left the factory. Unfortunately without a garage to keep such a car in, I feel like I should stick to rougher examples that I wouldn't mind leaving outside.
Hahah If you wanted to drive your Saab here to get the Fairmont I could dispose of it for you... trading it in wouldn't solve my "too many cars" issue.

I've also got a camber kit and front DBA Gold slotted/cross drilled rotors sitting here to suit this car (more stuff I removed from my EB)

Here's my old EB... I kind of miss it but the motor had better plans for a lighter weight home (the E21)



 

SileNceR

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1998 BMW E39 540iA, 1979 BMW E21/4.0i
*edit* - re-edited these photos and re-uploaded, see linked post below to find images on my blog.
 
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Bubs360

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That car is absolutely drop-dead gorgeous. Excellent work and nice photography too!
 
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