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BMW Z3 Maintenance & Repair



  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,648
    The "M" means manual, but what it does is put the transmission in the gear you select---you have to shift out of every gear yourself. This button confuses a lot of people. It's possible for instance, that if you press M while driving down the highway, when you come to a stop, you'll start out again in 4th gear---not a great idea---UNLESS---you *want* to do that, say for snow conditions.

    My advice would be, that unless you are slipping badly in snow, to ignore that button and just downshift manual in the regular "A" mode.
  • jose5010jose5010 Posts: 7
    Hey Dave I understand but THANK YOU VERY MUCH for your help you are a great person and hopefully a good friend!!!! I went to the only dealer in town today for a part and again asked them the dreaded A/M button question on my car and there best guess is close to what Mr. ShiftRight stated in the e-mail to me along with yours.It's still ironic that BMW of San Antonio cannot answer a simple question as mine??????? :( Again no matter what anybodys Thanks very much for youe help!!!!!!!!!!
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,648
    Even people in the BMW club are confused about that button :P
  • jose5010jose5010 Posts: 7
    edited March 2010
    Yea, I know all the dealer or the book can tell me is that it puts the car in 4th gear and leaves it there until you press the button again,which if you come to a stop you need a heavy foot to get the car moving.I guess I'll take the BMW service tech's guess that it is for highway use???????????????This is the way the book lays it out D-DRIVE/ 3-SPORTS FEATURE HIGHER REV'S GIVING YOU MORE POWER OUT OF THE ENGINE/2&1 ARE FOR TOWING!!!!!!!!!! :confuse:
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,648
    I think the M button is really a primitive form of traction control, to prevent you from spinning the wheels on snow or ice.
  • 5539655396 Posts: 530
    "Do you mean if I install the KN Air Filter, I break the bmw factory warranty?"

    Doesn't really matter. If something happens, just put the stock one back on before you take it in. Pricky dealer if he would make a hassle out of that anyway. A supercharger would be a different story.
  • 5539655396 Posts: 530
    I just bought a 96 Z3. OK, I wanted a Boxster but didn't find one, then this Z3 dropped into my lap for about 1/3 the cost, so thought what the heck. I can try it and resell it. We had tried out another but neither of us liked it. A dog. Probably not use to it yet and city traffic. 78k for about $5k 2 years ago. 109k on this one but mechanically very sound. I wanted the 6 cylinder. but have changed my mind. This 4 cylinder is really a gem and doesn't perform bad at all. The body is solid but a bit rough and the paint really should be taken down before repaint. The people I bought it from said they had an estimate of $1300 which I knew was wrong. Or maybe it was from 1990. Many shops said they won't do complete paint jobs anymore because of material costs., Just want collision work.

    Boy, did I have sticker shock when I priced a paint job. $4800 from a GM dealer. Another guy guessed at $8000. One good shop was $2500 but I used to buddy around with his dad, so maybe he treated me right. Some suggested looking for part time guys or small shops that may need the work. Still looking with a $1500 target but I may strip it myself. One guy said anyone can shoot the case coat as it won't run. May try it. But for now, I'll just try to fill the chips and may try slightly contrasting colors on the depressed area by the 3rd brake light, between the tail lights and maybe the hood bulge. Anyone have a reference to unique paint jobs? Now is the time to play as I can correct it with the paint job. I just picked up some dark blue spray cans. I think I can mix a lighter and darker color to get a good match to cover all the white primer chips. Anything is better that it is now. BMW wants $28 for 2 little bottles of touckup. Comments welcome.
  • 5539655396 Posts: 530
    Mine shifts OK, but there is a long throw for 5th and it seems to travel farther than it should, then there seems to be about a half inch of play. I'm wondering if there isn't a bad bushing. As soon as I get a trailer and stuff off my pit, I will go under to check. Anyone have this problem?
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,648
    K&N filter is a waste of money anyway, unless you like loud sucking noises. :P
  • 5539655396 Posts: 530
    The kick panel speakers are bad in my Z3. No problem I thinks, just spin out the bolts. Not so fast dummy. The bolts just spin easily and stay put. I thought - Oh, stripped, so I put pressure on the back of the speaker flange. Nothing, I finally reached through the torn surround to feel the backside. I cannot feel any bolt turning and it doesn't feel like there is a regular nut there. Maybe a clip nut, but lifting the flange while turning the bolt should work. But all 8? C'mon.

    So, what am I missing here? There is a Clarion aftermarket stereo installed with a power amp in the trunk, so someone must have been there. And the 5"? woofers have a plastic cone. Is that OEM? At any rate, does anyone know what the trick is here? Probably simple, but I'm stumped.

  • roostaroosta Posts: 1
    My 1997 Z3 starts when cold and 5-15 minutes after stopping but if stopped for 30 - 60 min it will turn over 5-6 seconds before starting. Has anyone heard of this and what's the fix..Thanks
  • same deal here....both kick speakers are crackling and Im interested in changing them out on my 1997 Z3 1.9L I managed to get off my butt and take a test look down at the panel , which is quite the tight squeeze for me, but didnt see any obvious removal approach to it... did you have any luck on your replacement? any pictures, guidance available?? and did you decide on a specific replacement part? Im not interested in going overboard on components, just a quality replacement works for me. curious as you your approach.. thks
  • 5539655396 Posts: 530
    Pretty simple to remove. There is a plastic locking screw about mid panel near the door end. Just turn about 1/4 turn to release, then work the panel out a bit and towards you. You may have to release a locking clip from the dash at the firewall end. There are 2 vertical tabs that are stabilized by going through slots in the firewall carpet.

    The surrounds on my speakers were split so to see if it was the problem. I fixed them with contact cement and reinforced the break with a thin coating of adhesive caulk. So far so good. Will eventually replace them but not sure with what. BTY, one speaker looked fine but still buzzed. Upon further insoection there was a crack not visible until I flexet it outward with my finger.
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,648
    Just for a test, trying flooring the gas pedal and holding it down when you start the car HOT and let us know if that improves, makes no difference, or makes the starting duration worse. What I'm sniffing out here is a leaking injector.
  • ok..thanks for prompt feedback..i will take a closer look. maybe i will get lucky and just have to cement mine as well. i saw the plastic locking screw, but it didnt seem to do much, but i will take a closer look on that and the clips and hopefully take a few snapshots for others as i go along..
  • Managed to get the panels off without issue. Will pull the speakers tomorrow. Look like 5 1/4 round at most. I couldnt see any issues with the speakers still mounted, will probably just change them out if i can identify a quality replacement. Not really interested in doing any major system upgrade, just a speaker swap. they seem to mount directly into metal frame, so dont want to have to deal with anything than just a swap. Seems like it would be some metal cutting and such and dont want to do that. if anyone reading has some suggestions for some quality replacements, please let me know.
  • 5539655396 Posts: 530
    The screw isn't really a screw. Just a quarter turn lock. Turn it and try to move the panel toward the console to see when unlocked.

    Google Madisound speaker to see wjhat they have for replacements. They have been around forever and also sell high quality speaker kits. I would guess they could suggest quality replacments. Please post what you find for replacements.

  • Just for documenting purposes. Looks like the stock speakers are 4 ohm, LPT 130, 40watts. Here are some other #s on the label in case its of any use: 33867 or possibly eyes arent that good. Nokia audio electonics, 49104 30246/02 Made in germany. They look to be 5" diameter cones with a metal housing with a 4" hole center to hole center square layout (in other words, four screws). The speaker was close to 2" deep, but the space seems to be able to accommodate up to about a 3" depth minimum. and yes, I did indeed fine a split in the cone once it was taken out. The wire attachments were assymetric slide on posts so the speaker wire was easily detached. there is actually a pair of these on ebay right now for $100, but I hate Ebay and rather go aftermarket.
  • latest update. It seems the biggest trick here is finding a suitable replacement speaker primarily from fit. The diagonal dimension of the screw holes is 5 5/8". Verifying that the 5.25" speaker mounting holes extend this far out has been an issue and as a result, I have yet to purchase anything. I was looking to just replace the driver, but it seems most quality speakers are either component system, or 2,3 or 4way system or coax connected. As Im trying to minimize headache, I am not pursuing an coax systems. I am likely to go with a 2,3 or 4-way system if I can find a suitable 4 ohm one with correct mounting. If anyone has some suggestions here, please let me know.
  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    If you can't find a 4-ohm speaker, then I would look for an 8-ohm one that had the right mounting hole pattern, if your goal is to not do any sheet metal work to the car or speaker.

    An 8-ohm speaker would give you a slightly lower sound level, but should not damage anything, and you can always turn the volume up a bit to compensate - that is, unless your drive around with the volume turned up to max all the time anyway :P .
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