So you want more power huh?
Well then an m6x engine is definitely a great way of giving your e30 some more punch. The engines are cheap, the mounts are made available by Garagistic , the weight penalty is minimal, and the fun is endless.
NOTE: This is a simple guide to get you going that covers the biggest points of the swaps. This does not go into every single detail/part number/process etc etc. If you want a more details swap guide we fully endorse the MACALENT LLC swap guide. This guide is extremely detailed! It gets down into the details, part numbers, order of items to be done during the swap! It goes into detail on the swap so that any shady-tree mechanic can do this swap in less than 1 month with $1000 investment (assuming they have the the car and drivetrain already acquired).
Options and variations of what m6x and transmissions are available
You have a couple of options here. M60, M62, S62. 5 speed, 6 speed or autotragic (automatic).
What engine is for me?
So you decided your going to make your e30 a beast by putting in a monster four-valve BMW V8 engine. However, there are somethings you should know before picking your engine. The M60 is a very poplar choice due to the fact that is cheap, came in many cars, and whole cars can be bought for $1000. M60s can be found be in E32 and E34 series. (93-97) There is a 4 liter and a 3 liter version. 4 liters in the 540i 740i and 840i. The 3-liter version was installed in the 530i and 730i. Click here to see info you need to know when picking an engine or donor car.
In 1997 the m60 was replaced with the M62. All these motors came with alusil blocks so this is a huge plus. The engine capacity was increased to either 3.5 (from 3.0) or 4.4 (from 4.0) liter. Early engines were non-vanos (makes swap easier). Later in their life, however; vanos was added as well as an EWS system (antitheft). If you have a later engine with vanos and the EWS, a couple factors are added to your swap. Some have been able to remove EWS using a chip or some other mods. Another route is to make sure that you get a complete ews system with the motor as well as the specific key to the system as well. Thats the ews box, keys (with chips in them), receiver, and ring. The ews system can be incorporated into the wiring, however; it gets complicated very quickly. More info coming soon!
M62 block with M60 goodies
This route is one we took on our very own Lela. You start with an m62 engine (which are all alusil, so you wont have to worry about getting a bad block), you take the complete wiring, sensors and dme from an m60 4.0 (which can all be taken from a junkyard for fairly cheap). You then modify the cam hall effect sensor to only have one tooth like the m60 sensor. Then comes the hard part, you either use the m60 front chain cover, or cut the mount for the trigger off the m60 cover and weld it onto your m62 cover. WARNING! This requires a skilled welder since its cast. Many cast item require both a post heat and a preheat! This setup requires additional work and a proper tune (which we can do), however you do get the best of all worlds. Simplified wiring, an extra .4 liters, a chance to grab and bolt on the m60 intake, and make extra power with a proper tune since those manifolds flow better. Its a win/win. Click here
Motor mounting options
Garagistic has you covered as far as getting the M6x series v8 into your e30. We offer motor mounts, subframe spacers + transmission extension brackets. The works. Click here and we get into all that.
With the extra power, you will need to up the cooling capacity of your new found power. We will discuss a couple options for you here.
ABS/ Brake booster relocation/ brake booster delete
This is arguably the hardest part of putting the bmw v8 in your little e30, but nothing we can't walk you through. - Click here.
Transmission mounts and driveshaft options
Good instructions of how you can mount your trans. Includes 5 speed, 6 speed and auto options. Compares the 5 speed vs 6 speed vs autotragic. Take your pick. We will explain what it takes to get these things in your e30, as well as the advantages of each. Read all about it.
Wiring your m60 or m62
This is where most people get scared. No need to fear though, Garagistic has got the info to get your v8 powered e30 to come to life. You have three options here. Wiring your m60, wiring your m62 with EWS, or getting your m62 to fire using the m60 harness with mods. Click here to read about it all.
E30 swap exhaust and header setups
What is a good size exhaust? What exhaust manifolds work/dont work? How can they clear the steering rack? How to pass the CA bar? We dig into all that stuff here.
Oil housing modification + oil filter housing issues
All things oil here. We tell you what is the best housing to use so its not a complete pain in the *** to do an oil change because you decided to stuff an engine thats "too big" into your e30. You can thank us later. Click here for all the little tricks.
NOTE: This is a simple guide to get you going that covers the biggest points of the swaps. This does not go into every single detail/part number/process etc etc. If you want a more details swap guide we fully endorse the MACALENT LLC swap guide. This guide is extremely detailed! It gets down into the details, part numbers, and other items that are involved with this swap! It goes into detail on the swap so that any shady-tree mechanic can do this swap in less than 1 month with $1000 investment (assuming they have the the car and drivetrain already acquired).