is the more to get from a 1.8 Z3?


Hi all, after spending an hour browsing the website and looking at some theads on here I thought i'd chip in and say hello.... and maybe ask a few questions.

I have a 2000(X) Z3. She's a 1.9 118bhp 8 valve 4 pot (badged 1.8). I've had the car 3 years now and still get loads of pleasure driving it. But I do wonder whether there are some more ponies hidden away inside the engine somewhere that are just waiting to get out.

118bhp does not sound much for a 1.9 ltr engine, compare this with other 1.9 ltr BMW engines... or even a 1.8 MX5 or MR2... I do wonder whether the car was 'de-tuned' in some way by BMW.

Any how.. I guess what i'm getting at is, is there any one on here who has had experience with this engine before, I think the M43 was also used in the 3series. So far all I have done is change the HT leads and fitted a cheap cone induction filter (filter works quite well, response is a lot sharper....'till the engine bay warms up! ).

Is there a hidden switch somewhere or a quick re-map that will instantly give me the 150bhp'ish that I think is more like what the engine should produce?

Any suggestions (short of selling the car.... this I could never do!!!!) would be greatly appreciated.

Hi ribs and welcome to TorqueCars. The car has been built for motorway cruising and reliability which is why is seems "down" on power. I met a guy at the BHPperformance show who has had a supercharger fitted on standard engine internals. He had the M series which had BMWs uprated fuel and injectors. Other mods you can do are Cams - fast road, sports exhaust and headers, induction kit with cold air intake, lower ratio gearbox, remove the limiter and get the suspension lowered and stiffened.
if your having problems once the car heats up. i take it when youve said youve fitted cheap cone filter its not a cold air one (the cone sits low down in the engine bay or in the wheel arch.) this will mean that the engine is drawing in the hot air of the engine ( think about >100 degrees C ) not good for performance.
best bet is to buy a model specific CAI for the car, but this can be expensive as a good one could cost £200-300. see if you can fit a heatsheild around the filter ( even if you can get the original airbox over it ) along with some cold ducting from the front of the engine to supply lots of cold air. if youve managed to refit the airbox over it youll need to open up the hole already in the box or block it up otherwise the cold air will just rush out the original hole
if this has made sence ive done well :embarrest:
Thanks waynne and pgarner for your thoughts. Ive looked into superchargers before, but no one seems to make one for a 8v 1.9 (if they did I think the price might too high anyway :confused: ). I searched on the web for fast road cams, but there seems to be some concerns that you gain power at higher revs but loose low end torque.

I think the first step is to try and fit a heat shield around my cone filter, I already have a duct fitted to the front of the car, but its pulling in too much hot air from the engine as well.

Next thing I might look at is a free-flow exhaust. Once I can get cold air into the engine and hot exhaust gasses out easier would it then be time to tweek to it with a re-map?

That looks nice! I love the wheels! A remap will not give much in the way of power gains - I think you would be dissapointed. A good cam selection will definately help power - see our articles on cams in the Tuning section and see what works best. A bad cam selection will make the car terrible in traffic.
The 1.9 8v unit is from the similar aged 316i 2dr/4dr. BMW used to make it so clear what engine was what but the numbers thing is a distorted now.

I know that the 1.9 Z3 is no ball of fire but I remember the engines being exceptionally smooth, which more that makes up for some extra midrange muscle in my opinion.,
hi ribs, nice car you have :)
other possibilities tuning it could be intake manifold, and single throttle body injection. both available at dbilas dynamics:
dbilas dynamics
but that stuff happens to be expensive.

btw, the engine was "detuned", i think every other bmw engine in this time had already 4 valves per cylinder. that should be the main reason of having little power.

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