Karwerkz M3With the '08 SEMA show only weeks away, the Karwerkz project car has been caught in a mad race for completion. The '03 BMW M3 widebody was introduced in et 10/08 and since then a team of tuners and fabricators have been laboring night and day to finish the car before the big show.
Our latest update shows Groma Race Fabrications from Irwindale, CA (above) finishing a six-point rollcage. In addition, it has two cross-bars; one in the rear and another in the trunk. Groma still plans custom suspension pieces such as bushings and control arms, but the project had to move on to the next shop for other last-minute work.
Not overlooking the details, some additional clean-up was accomplished by European Motor Works in Arcadia, CA. The BMW repair shop was used for its knowledge of wiring and electronics. The shop basically removed all the unnecessary wiring and tucked the remainder. This process requires skilled professionals because removing a wrong wire could be disastrous.
Since the last update, the M3 had new wheels and suspension installed. Enkreuz built a custom set of 19x10.5/13" wheels in flat black with a contrasting pinstripe. These beefy rims fill the carbon widebody designed by Asuka Designs. The widebody is claimed to be 5" wider up front and a generous 9" wider in the rear. The wheel and tire combination will also offer better traction for the estimated 900whp 3.2 liter S54 turbo motor being built by Horsepower Freaks. The brakes and coilovers have been custom-engineered by K-Sport.
Stay tuned for our SEMA report next month to hopefully see this wild E46 M3 finished.
Piper E30 V10
In et 5/08, Piper Motorsports of Sterling, VA undertook the challenge of transforming this E30 M3 shell into something unique and dangerous. The plan was to drop in a 5.0 liter V10 motor from the E60 BMW M5. With just over 500hp from the factory, Piper plans to extract more power from the engine with a handful of power upgrades including a custom stainless exhaust. But rather than adapt the M5 engine and drivetrain to fit within the E30 chassis, they took the harder route of modifying the car to fit the parts.
In previous updates we've seen the V10 dropped into the engine bay with the help of an E90 subframe plus modified shock towers and firewall. More upgrades include the high-tech Moton suspension and big brakes.
Safety was going to be a key factor, so an eight-point rollcage was fabricated through the dash and routed inside the pillars of the car.
And let's not forget that custom widebody conversion, which has been fabricated to accommodate tires wide enough to hopefully find some traction once that V10 starts screaming.
Our latest reports finds the car is actually driving and has made several trips to the dyno once Apex Speed Technology in California was responsible for building a wiring harness to run the Pectel management system for the motor.
With the M5's V10 up front, Piper was understandably worried about curb weight, as well as weight distribution. However, the scales have revealed the car (without it trunk or glass) weighed in at a lithe 2514 lb.
It seems the weight distribution is approximately 53/47% front to rear. This apparently came as a surprise to Piper, considering the obvious physical difference between the original four-cylinder motor and the V10! Yet Robbie Clements at Piper estimates the final curb weight should be around 2800 lb.
With the motor finally running, the next few weeks will consist of tuning the engine management before power curves can be extracted. Work will then be outsourced for the exterior and interior design work.
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