BMW M3 – A Brief History

Today we’re talking about the BMW E30M3.
Pictured here is a first generation M3. They were first produced in 1986 with a 4 cylinder motor named the S14B23 producing 192bhp. The M3 differed from the base model 3 series in many ways. Although sharing the same basic shell it had 12 different and unique body panels for the purpose of improving aerodynamics. The “Box Flares on the wheel arches in the front and rear were to help accommodate a wider track with wider and taller wheels and tires. It came with 5×120 wheel bolt pattern as opposed to the base model 4×100. Special front and rear brake calipers as well as plenty of suspension related upgrades.

The E30 M3 competed in many disciples of racing competing in both road and rally style races. In full race spec the “Evo” 2.5L motor produced 380hp.  In 2007 @automobilemag included the E30 M3 in their “5 Greatest drivers cars of all time” BMW is currently on the F80 version of the M3 powered by a Twin Turbo 3.0L making 444hp in their competition package.

BMW OBD II Communication and Monitor Issues

As touched upon in a previous post (Smog Check OBD Reference Update) certain 1999 and 2000 model year BMW vehicles with 2.5 liter and 2.8 liter displacement engines that are having trouble passing the smog inspection due to incomplete monitors may be subject to a voluntary emissions recall (00E-A01: Fault Access/O2 Readiness Codes).

Model Manufactured
E39 528i, 528iA, 528iT, 528iAT 2/99-7/99
E46 328i, 328iA, 323i, 323iA 3/98-7/99
E46 328iC, 328iCA, 323iC, 323iCA 2/99-7/99
E36/7 Z3 coupe 2.8 4/99-7/99
E36/7 Z3 roadster 2.8 4/99-7/99
E36/7 Z3 roadster 2.3 9/98-7/99

bmw-logoBMW has determined that certain 1999 & 2000 model year BMW automobiles with 2.5 liter and 2.8 liter displacement engines may not fully meet Federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)  and California Air Resources Board on-board diagnostic requirements.

There are two issues:

  1. Due to an engine control module software error, a communication conflict exists between the engine control module (“The Computer”) and the transmission control module (“The other Computer”).  This may lead to difficulties or prevent communication and data transmission between the engine control module and and diagnostic equipment (Including the “Smog Machine”).
  2. The oxygen sensor readiness monitor may not run to completion on affected E36/7, E46 and E39 vehicles.

Owners of affected vehicles should have received a letter from BMW as early as November 2000; however if you own one of these affected vehicles and are having trouble receiving California smog certification due to incomplete monitors or communications issues (Or are due for a smog inspection) and have not completed the recall, you should contact your BMW dealer.  It may help to refer to Emissions Recall 00E-A01 and BMW Bulletin SI B 12 15 99.