Here we go again.. E38 M7 project. Alpine white/38k - BMW M5 Forum and M6 Forums
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post #1 of 534 Old 22nd August 2016, 07:10 PM Thread Starter
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Here we go again.. E38 M7 project. Alpine white/38k

I was going to do this to my estoril car but ended up selling that one before anything happened. Have pretty much regretted the decision ever since. I tried to keep a stock car again by buying an 07 E63 AMG with 34k miles but I quickly got bored with the stock'ness and refused to mod that car. It was the nicest stock car I had ever owned but I just wasn't satisfied. Anyone who knows me knows my obsession for modding cars.

So Friday I picked up the latest project car. 2001 BMW 740i M sport one owner Alpine on tan with 38k miles!!!!

The car was transported to Paul (blackknight530i) yesterday and he will be swapping the carpet to black, installing the NBT retrofit along with his black 750 dash, lower, console and front door cards. Brian (Redshift) will be dying the lower dash, door panels and seats caramel.

I ordered Apex ARC-8's in 19x9.5/10 with Bridgestone Potenza S-04 pole positions in 255/40 and 285/35/19. Got H&R spacers, wheel stud conversion kit and will be doing H&R II springs. Also bought a used Brembo GT BBK for the front with 355x32 2 piece rotors and silver Brembo 4 pot calipers. Same kit I have on the wagon.

Paul has built me a grey faced M5 cluster with white LED's. Apparently I am the first to request that combo

Ordered gloss black kidneys, new passenger headlight lens, cowl panel and both engine bay seals.

Waiting on Adam to find me a nice S62/6 speed/diff and then eventually, will do an ESS supercharger. It's going to be epic!

Last edited by RVAE34; 22nd August 2016 at 07:19 PM.
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post #2 of 534 Old 22nd August 2016, 07:11 PM Thread Starter
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Quote from Paul on bf.c after he received the car.

Originally Posted by blackknight530i View Post
Ok, car was delivered to me today after several delays due to a flat tire on the transport truck on the way up, but Brandon wanted me to post some pics, so here you go:
Engine Bay:

A bit of rust on the oil filter housing bracket, but this will be changed out when doing the S62 swap, so no worries:

There was a slight crack in the radiator at some point around the upper inlet neck and it sprayed all over the hood blanket, the wiring near the headlight, the oil filter housing bracket, fan shroud, etc, but it appears to have a new radiator, so all is well. A good cleaning on that while the engine is out will make it look nice and new again. If it gets a M5 fan shroud and radiator, it will be unnecessary anyways.
And the interior. This interior is unbelievably nice. The seats are super supple and clean. I've never felt seats this soft in an e38/e39 before, so it was quite an experience. The instrument cluster has very likely been replaced by BMW at some point, because all pixels work and it being a FL car for it's whole life would have destroyed a regular cluster. I'm pretty sure it's one of the 2004+ clusters that shouldn't ever have pixels fail, but he's putting the M5 one in with the white LEDs and it's a 2004+ anyways, so no loss. The headliner is not perfect, but not bad at all. In a couple spots, you can see where the foam is deteriorating underneath the fabric. It's not bad enough to sag anywhere, but there are a couple places it looks like it was touched or bumped and it didn't come back out evenly. All that will be Alcantara in the future anyways, so no loss there either.
All the Vavona trim is immaculate, though could probably use a polish to get rid of some swirls, but no cracks. The StarTAC phone cable was basically destroyed by the sun, but more than likely I would imagine he'll put a standard cell phone delete cubby there or cut the cable off like I did on mine. It also came with two sets of what look to be OE floor mats. One set is the original and has the BMW embroidered in the driver side floor mat, but the other set appear the same, minus the BMW lettering. The trunk mat looked like it was completely unused and it comes with the factory netting.
The subwoofer speakers are blown and sound pretty awful when you turn up any bass, but the rest of the speakers sound decent. The nav display seems to have all its pixels, but it appears that the polarizer was messed up or something, because you have to look at it at a certain angle to be able to see it, like looking at a negative of it. It's going to be replaced anyways.
The sunroof glass needs to be adjusted as one side rear part is a bit lower than the roof and the other side rear is above the roof and it's the opposite on the front edge. I'll be doing that to hopefully fix the wind noise issues Brandon mentioned to me. Shouldn't be a difficult fix.
Here's the interior pics:

Driver door had a bit of dirt around the handle, possibly from the driver of the transport truck:

In the next few pics, the lighter color over the tan is from the windows in my garage letting light through, not discoloration of the interior:

Exterior. The exterior is surprisingly nice, but there are some very minor flaws. Nothing that can't be easily dealt with, but Brandon wanted full disclosure.
There is a small rock chip that has caused a small dent on the hood about in the middle. There is a small rock chip on the driver side fender. The passenger side grill has broken clips, so it doesn't stay in place well, but the driver side one is perfect. I wish my passenger side grille was in good shape, as I would just swap it over for him. The OE side marker lens gaskets are torn and kind of hanging out around the outer edges of them, but I'm going to put my all clear turn signal lenses on instead. It'll look awesome with the Alpine White and the nearly new looking headlight lenses. Speaking of the headlight lenses, it looks like the passenger side lens was hit by something and has a pretty good size crack in it, but getting a new OE lens will make it match the driver side one perfectly, so no worries there.
The cowl rubber around the bottom of the windshield is all cracked and a bunch of pieces have broken off, so he's going to be replacing that. There is a tiny scratch in the passenger side fender that looks like someone tried to touch it up with some wrong color touch up paint at some point, or it could possibly be some plaster like substance that dripped on the fender. My buddy is going to be detailing the exterior of the car with some paint correction, so we'll see if it's something to worry about or if it goes away easily.
The drip rails are missing the rubber on the rear 'C' pieces and the driver side one has separated from its clips. I could fix the clip problem with some epoxy or 3m adhesive tape like I did, but the missing rubber makes that fix moot. Getting new ones would probably be the best course of action, but it will require repainting the shadowline trim around the windows so it all matches. It's just a bit sun-faded currently.
The trunk struts are pretty much shot, so new ones are in order. Fortunately, they are pretty cheap.
Ok, time for the performance/ride quality/issues part. Me and a couple friends took a drive around to test the ride quality, performance and general maintenance of the car. I had my buddy ride in the back to see how it rode back there and how the seats felt, and he's like, "this is how this car was supposed to be", so good report from there. The A/C worked well enough, but I'm starting to think that it just doesn't work as well as the e39 system, since both my e39s feel way colder, while my e38 feels pretty much the same. The suspension felt perfect for the car. It wasn't too stiff, nor too soft and seemed to handle exactly as a low mileage suspension should, but I understand that Brandon had the car on the lift and noticed that the rubber boots on the control arms were all shot, so I'm guessing those will be replaced in short order preventatively to keep them from failing prematurely. The drivetrain felt perfect, with no slop in the on/off throttle, no weird noises, no play, no shuddering and the transmission shifted perfectly through the gears. We checked it in normal and sport mode and sport mode seemed to be holding the gears pretty long, which I think is pretty normal, but I don't have autos anymore. Normal mode felt perfect for this car.
Performance was quite good, but it felt sluggish at low RPMs for some reason. In checking the codes after I got it back, it has a CPS bank 1 code, so I'm thinking changing that out might restore the lost performance. I also noticed that the accelerator pedal feels like a cable driven one, which is indicative of the early pedals that were improved upon with the e39 pedals in 2002+ or so. It's not necessarily a problem, but having a newer pedal will definitely improve the response feel from the engine. I did it on my e38 and it's much better.
There was a ABS/DSC/Brake trifecta on it, but I cleared the codes and it hadn't come back, though I haven't driven it yet to see if they come back. It did have a code for one of the ABS sensors giving an implausible value, so if that code comes back, I'll swap it with one of mine and see if it fixes it. I haven't been able to clear the DSC code though saying that the Steering Angle Sensor needs to be calibrated. I've tried to calibrate it and make sure it and the DSC module were matched, but it just doesn't want to clear the code in the DSC module, so I'm going to try to swap it with my DSC module and see if that fixes it. I recall having to do this on Redshift's M5T and replacing the module and coding it fixed the problem.
Overall, the car is super amazing, especially at the price he got it for. It's got just enough flaws that he won't feel bad modifying it, but it's nice enough that it's worth doing all these mods with it. Brandon, you're a lucky guy. I'm sure I'm going to get the talk from my neighbor thinking I've really started a used BMW car lot though .
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post #3 of 534 Old 22nd August 2016, 08:10 PM
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What? No Chebby motor?!

2000 M5 Carbon Black
Dinan 3.45 Differential
Evolve Tune
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post #4 of 534 Old 22nd August 2016, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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post #5 of 534 Old 22nd August 2016, 09:28 PM
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Nice car! Almost a shame modifying it...but, if it going to be modified, can't do any better than an S62 6-speed conversion!


2016 F80 M3, Mineral Grey/Golden Brown/6MT - ED delivery 6/3/2016
2002 M5, Sterling Gray/Caramel
2007 Z4M Coupe Silver Gray/Black
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Too many kids' cars...
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post #6 of 534 Old 22nd August 2016, 09:53 PM Thread Starter
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Agreed. I feel somewhat bad about it but it's also boring as is to me.. I would feel really bad had I paid more than the $7k I spent on it.
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post #7 of 534 Old 22nd August 2016, 10:35 PM
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Hi RVAE34,

Alpine White E38;

S62 swap;

All the other goodies;

Cheers, Dennis!

2003 Ex-Police E39 530 Diesel Touring. Alpine White, 260,000+ Miles & climbing!

19" Hartge Nova 5 - with custom painted 'Flash Chrome' centres & Polished Lips (set of 5)
19" Hartge Nova 5 - Awaiting custom re-finish (set of 4)
19" Hartge Classic - with custom powder coated centres in shadow chrome & diamond cut/no lacquer lips (set of 5)
20" Hartge Classic - Awaiting custom re-finish
19" 3Pc Forged wheels - ID retained until re-built & finished (2 sets)
20" 3Pc Forged wheels -ID retained until re-built & finished
19" Centres - ID retained until rebuilt & finished
Full Custom Audio install - Arc Audio KS Mini ampliifers. DLS 5.25" 2 way front components & 4" 2 way co-axials. JL Audio 8W3-V3 subwoofer in stealth enclosure. Parrot Asteroid Smart head unit, custom door builds for DLS front stage & Earthquake SWS6 flatline subwoofers, custom rear pillar speaker pods. LumiDock iPod dock,

H&R Springs, ExoticsTuning front lip spoiler, Sport F/R bumpers upgrade, Carbon Fibre effect printed Vinyl roof wrap, High gloss black vinyl window trim wrap, Hartge bonnet/hood & tailgate badges, rear rooftip spoiler, matt Black kidney grille, projector foglamps.

Hartge auto gearlever, Hartge Handbrake handle, Hartge door sill strips, E46 M3 CSL Alcantara/Tri-stitch SMG steering wheel, full Black Leather Sport seats,


Custom ECU re-map biased for more Power & Torque in Steptronic mode, EGR delete, K&N induction kit, Stainless steel de-cat, Stainless steel exhaust backbox with twin oval pipes. Manual 5 spd gearbox conversion.

Plenty more modifications to come!
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post #8 of 534 Old 23rd August 2016, 03:31 AM
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Beautiful E38! Congrats on finding such a clean low mileage E38.

Dinan cold air intakes
Dinan free flow exhaust
Dinan front strut tower brace
Dinan rear strut tower brace
Dinan stage 2 software
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post #9 of 534 Old 23rd August 2016, 03:59 AM
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It looks so damned pretty sitting in the backyard with my other cars at the moment . I'm really just waiting until my neighbor comes over and asks if I'm starting a used BMW car lot. Pretty soon, it will be having the seats and door cards pulled and sent to Brian, while I'll be working on swapping over as much black interior parts as I can into the car and installing the NBT wiring harness that came in today. There will be a couple preparatory wires run while the carpet is out for the S62 swap. I'll probably document the things that I do in here so that it keeps it all contained and consistent. I know that Brandon will probably have quite a few low mileage tan parts available after all is said and done, in case any of you guys know people with e38s that need them.

2003 "M5" - S62/420g swap, M5 diff, M5 driveshaft, M5 brakes, M5 Traction Bars, M5 Bumpers, M5 Full Leather Interior Swap, M5 Gloss Shadowline, M5 Mirrors, M5 Gauge Cluster,
M5 Ground Control Coilovers, Eibach Sway Bars, UUC Evo3/DSSR, M5 Borla Exhaust w/Muffler Delete, BMW NBT Retrofit, Hella G4 Bi-Xenon Retrofit, APEX PS-7s, e60 Hubs
530i 6-speed swap build thread

2003 530it6 - M54b30/S6S-420g swap, 3.15 540it diff, e60 SSK, VMR VB2 19" Wheels, M5 Gauge Cluster, Hella G4 Bi-xenon Retrofit, NBT Retrofit, Koni Sports, 540i Brakes

2002 540it - Coming soon
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post #10 of 534 Old 23rd August 2016, 04:05 AM
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