Powerplant and ancillaries
When I purchased the car there was no engine or transmission! I couldn't be happier, open slather for my dream set up for this project, what to do?
So many choices!
There are many examples of quality engine upgrades out there, most go for the fuel injected M30 3.5ltr, an easy fit, the more ambitious go for the S38 3.6 or 3.8 Euro engine out of the E34 M5. A very nice upgrade, the only issue being that there were not many in Oz so difficult to source and a bit spendy!
Given that I like to put the modern spin on classic cars, putting an early 90's engine in this car seemed to fall short of what I want to achieve. Then I spotted the S54 engine out of the E46 M3, yer baby, 330HP, it shall be mine!
Seemed like a good idea at the time!
You can pretty much put any engine in any car if you throw enough time and money at the problem, the S54 has been transplanted into plenty of E30's but not many have been brave enough to try it on the E9 so there was never going to be a whole lot of expertise or parts out there. I know it's not going to be an easy transplant, there will be plenty of issues to overcome, but I'm sure it will be worth it, what could be better than driving a 1970 2800cs that goes like a 2005 M3!
Engine and Transmission Sourced
It didn't take long to find a S54 engine, I got one from a SMG car (a type of semi-auto gearbox) as they usually don't get over revved, luckily the same seller had the 5 speed manual from the earlier E36 M3 I was after, I wanted this because its smaller than the E46 6 speed and I didn't want a SMG transmission. It should not require major transmission tunnel modifications.
The S54 was stripped to bare engine and given a thorough check over, the motor had done 120K so it will get pretty much rebuilt.