It was so easy to miss. In fact, I may have walked past it a few times the morning of Players Classic as it was fully pushed back into its adopted pit for the day. It was only in the afternoon, when it had crept forward a few feet, that I realised its significance.
Before you read on, there’s a caveat to this spotlight: there aren’t any full pictures of the car. Unusual as it might be, due to the positioning of the car, its proximity to others and its dark colour resting half in full sunshine and half in the shade, it made it too difficult to get an unobstructed view. Well, that’s my excuse anyways.
The first detail that caught my attention was the carbon fibre front end, which previously just looked dark in the shade.
Poking my head over the carbon half-bonnet – this was one of two E30s at Players Classic with this unusual feature – I found something instantly recognisable as not being of BMW origin.
A V8 swap isn’t an unusual setup in an E30, but we typically see owners and builders keeping it in the family, so to speak. In this instance it’s a small block Chevy with twin Holset HX35s turbochargers, both equipped with TiAL external wastegates and screamer pipes. The net result of this swap is output figures circa 880hp and 723lb/ft.
Usually, when cars feature horsepower and torque levels of this kind, we would expect to see a stripped, caged and fairly simplistic interior. But not in this case. Here, there’s a pair of Recaro CSs and a full interior re-trim in Ruby Red nappa leather with contrasting black Alcantara. It gets even more interesting when you walk around to the rear of the car and take a look inside the boot…
Ah, that is definitely not typical BMW fare. While the swirl pot and twin Bosch 044s are not all that unusual, the in-board custom cantilever suspension with GAZ coilovers certainly is. This is a car with a lot of surprises as it seems.
The 17×9-inch (front) and 17×10-inch (rear) Hartge three-piece wheels are well suited to the car. When the doors are closed, the boot is latched and the bonnet is down, you would be forgiven for thinking that this is just another nice, simple E30 BMW.
Now, to try and hunt it down for a proper feature. Because who knows what else this car has in store…
Your pictures suck.... The only time I see you guys take really good pictures is when you are taking Picts for advertising from places like Replica Wheels AKA Rotiform!!!
And here I was thinking that Speedhunters was the one outlet which had escaped the fake news conspiracy theorists.
The car is a really cool find regardless though. I definetely want to know more about the inboard suspension.
It's a falling rate suspension, that means it sucks! And it was designed by a complete idiot!
You sis not take any pics of the whole car? Really real car people don't care you did. To get to take it out for a one off.
Why don't you take your abundance of free time and take some "better" pics. You know, so the rest of us can make snide comments about your lack of skill and class.
Very interesting car but only these few pics and that's it?
C'mon... we want to see the whole car at least...
Bad ass build!
Paddy! Purple fringing for daaaaays!
that inboard suspension turns me on
Such an awesome car!
Found build thread on Driftworks: https://www.driftworks.com/forum/threads/bmw-e30-v8-tt.224930/page-14
Nice, falling rate on the rocker arms. What a joke!
Someone explain the bonnet please!
The build thread for anyone who is interested (I am not the owner by the way)....
Don't be mad, I don't usually do this, but you lost me at 'small block chevy'. And I didn't have to scroll too much farther to reach the comments. I'd like to know more about the suspension though...