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3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

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Old 02-24-2009, 01:50 PM   #1 (permalink)
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e36 318 to 2.5 swap?

Hey guys i receantly rolled my alpine e30 325i, which is now a flater parts car by the way if interested. I used to own an alpina e30 318is aswell, so after owning two e30s i think im ready for a change for abit. So now my question now is i know i probably missed it in my not too long search of my answer but, ive gotten a few versions if the answer. I wanted to purchase an e36 325 and i found a great deal on a 94 318is so i wanted to know how strait forward would it be to put a 2.5 in it to make it a 325is if its a simple mount swap ecu and harness swap ETC. Or is it more in depth than that if you want to tell me to F-off and keep looking i will, if you want to give me some help greatly appreciated. Thank you.

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Old 02-24-2009, 10:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I take it you want to take your E30 325 motor and put it in an E36 318i? No it will not be simple. The engine will fit, you'll need to fab mounts. You'll need to fab a driveshaft and rear subframe. You'll also have to figure out which diff you want to use, I would recommend keeping the E30 diff (better ratio over the E36 318i especially if its an auto), and that will affect your subframe and driveshaft fab specifications. You should have the other parts readily available to pull from the E30. But it won't be as quick as the E36 325, it will be slower than the E30 (due to weight difference) and it will only be marginally quicker than the E36 318i (only a 23ish bhp difference). By the time you factor in your time, cost of fabing the parts,it would be better to part out the E30 and buy an E36 325. Just my .02 though.
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Old 02-25-2009, 10:18 AM   #3 (permalink)
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that does sound like alot, but no im parting out my e30 and want to get an e36 325 but if i get an e36 318 i want to put the e36 325 in the e36 318 i know i can put an m50 in an e30 but i mean an m5 from e36 325 into e36 318
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Old 02-25-2009, 10:31 PM   #4 (permalink)
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You'll spend more money in the end doing it that way. I thought you were asking if the E30 325 engine will fit in the E36 318i body. It will be cheaper and easier in either case to buy an E36 325i. Unless you can find a donor E36 325i and have the time to do the swap yourself. If you can find an E36 325i donor that is mechanically sound it won't be an issue. Just make sure the rear subframe is intact and you'll have to swap it in for the 318i rear subframe. The rest of the body/frame won't matter.
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Old 02-25-2009, 10:43 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks for help. I am definitely going for a 325, but just in case i found a good deal on a 318 i figured i'd ask. A buddy of mine owns a salvage yard and could get me a donor car for almost nothing if i were to go the swap route, but i am looking for a 325 for sure. I want to build an decent M3 contender out of a 325 for not a but load of money. I know thats the holy grail but maybe even a 2.8 or a 3.0L swap. We'll see.
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Old 02-25-2009, 11:35 PM   #6 (permalink)
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You'll not find an M3 contender by swapping a 2.5 into a 318. There is a guy in my car club that did it with a 318 Ti. It has exhaust and some other basic mods everything bolt on but boost. And it doesn't even think about contending with my M ever with 3 people of extra weight in my car. It walked all over another one of my buddies Audi A4s with some different mods, but couldn't even touch the M range. I think you'd be doing alot of work for nothing. Especially when you can find an e36 M for relatively cheap these days.
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Old 02-25-2009, 11:53 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'd love to get an e36 M, but i dont think I'll get a good one for less than 5k. So for the next project i think ill have to see how far I can go by getting an e36 325. I had plans for my e30 i have a 666fabrication turbo manifold and shat for it.
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