Magnus Granberg’s road to classic BMW ownership was written years before he could even drive.
As a youngster, he watched – and no doubt helped – his father work on the various BMW projects that continually inhabited his family’s garage in Sweden. When it finally came time for Magnus to sit and pass his driver license test in 1995, having a project of his own was pretty much the only priority.
It was Magnus’s father who found the car for sale – a 1970 BMW 2002 that was well-used and rusty, which meant it was cheap. In other words, the perfect start point for a BMW-mad father and son project.
Over the next while, Magnus and his father brought the BMW back to life, overhauling mechanical components and repairing the bodywork. In its freshly-restored state, Magnus happily drove the car until 2002, when he decided he’d be better off with an all-wheel drive winter car. The BMW was sold and an Audi quickly filled the garage void.
Although he could now navigate the snow-laden roads around Vadstena, Östergötland County with ease, Magnus instantly regretted selling the classic BMW.
If you’ve ever been in a similar position, you’ll know how Magnus probably felt – especially now that classics from the ’70s and ’80s have become so sought after. But eight years after he sold his 2002, he chanced upon it while searching Blocket (the Swedish equivalent of eBay) for a new car. Magnus had the opportunity to buy to his beloved BMW back, and he didn’t mess around getting the deal done.
It wasn’t all roses though; between the time he originally sold it and 2010 when he got it back, the BMW had spent most of its time outside in the elements, and had crash damage to boot. A lot of work was was needed to bring it back up to the standard it once was, but Magnus was fully dedicated to the cause.
Along the way, new wheels were fitted and the engine bay was tidied up, and once again Magnus could enjoy the fruits of his labor.
in 2019, Magnus decided to enter the 2002 in a car show called Bimmers Of Sweden, an event where his restoration efforts were rewarded with an honorary award. It was at this point that Magnus decided he’d return the following year and show the car without a hood. Serious modifications were now on the cards, and we’ll get to those in just a second after we’ve talked about the exterior upgrades, of which less are definitely more.
From the moment Magnus decided he was essentially going to restomod his BMW, the car’s iconic lines were off limits. Given the shape of the 2002, it would be a hard task to integrate modern aesthetics in a subtle way, and to be honest, I don’t think that thought even crossed Magnus’s mind. He did the right thing, keeping it clean and timeless by fitting genuine 2002 Turbo fender flares and front air dam.
In the paint and wheel department, Magnus took a more contemporary approach but still kept things in the family – the car was resprayed BMW 354 Titan Silver and the wheels are Alpina items. The latter were built by CR Custom Wheels, who took them out to 17×8.5-inch for the front fitment and 17×9.5-inch for the rear, before Magnus had them shod in Nankang AR1 semi-slick rubber.
If money was no object, Magnus would have had an E30 M3’s S14 engine in the 2002’s bay quick-smart, but that dream ultimately gave way to a more accessible S54B32 from an E46 M3.
You might be wondering if a 3.2L inline-six could even fit in the 2002, and initially this was Magnus’s main concern too. As you can see, it’s entirely possible, but it was big job that required major work to the firewall.
Magnus had previous experience with engine swaps, but nothing of this scale. It was certainly a first for Sweden, but perhaps even the world?
With 338hp on offer from factory the S54B32 would have been powerful enough in standard form, but the engine in Magnus’s car has had some work. Inside, there’s Wiseco forged pistons , Pauter forged rods and a balanced crankshaft, while ancillary upgrades under-hood include a modified OEM intake manifold, custom-made velocity stacks, Nuke Performance fuel rail and 790cc injectors, Radium tanks and a DO88 aluminum race radiator. It’s all beautifully presented in the bay too.
One of the coolest aspects is the exhaust, where Magnus has adapted a BMW 1M system to fit – after raising the trunk floor – but added an outlet that bypasses the rear muffler altogether to really let the straight-six sing.
With the M3 engine in play and all tuned through MaxxECU management, the driveline needed an upgrade too. Here you’ll find a ZF BMW 535d gearbox (which necessitated the the floor and transmission tunnel to be extensively modified) a Tenaci flywheel and clutch, and an E36 M3 differential.
The suspension too has been thoroughly overhauled with Öhlins R&T coilovers featuring Millway Motorsport top mounts, modified BMW 2002tii arms and Sellholm Tuning anti-roll bars. In the brake department you’ll find Tenaci 6-piston calipers and 320mm rotors up front, and out back Tenaci 280mm rotors and a hydraulic handbrake .
The interior space is a real mix of old and new. Magnus refurbished the dashboard, door panels and roof liner (the latter trimmed black), then added Recaro BMW Performance seats, BMW M seat belts, Auto Meter gauges, a modified E46 M3 OBP pedal box, custom mats and a custom-aged Momo steering wheel. He also built a new leather-trimmed center console which houses a tablet screen.
Magnus’s BMW attracted a lot of attention from passersby as Alen photographed it. Most who commented were of an older generation, and said that they had owned or at least driven one (BMW built 800,000 2002s after all), and/or the 2002 is on their dream car list. It’s hard to not want one after learning everything about Magnus’s creation.
Earlier in this story I said that Magnus had set out to rebuild his 2002 over the course of a year, so he could show it at the 2020 running of Bimmers Of Sweden. Due to Covid that event was postponed, giving Magnus a little longer than 12 months to complete the project, but that’s exactly what he did. Many a late night was spent working on the car, and Magnus said he couldn’t have done it without the help of his father and his friends.
It’s been a year since the ‘M02′ was completed, and while Magnus is now spending his 2021 summer enjoying it, he’s already sizing up his next project. This time it will something a little louder, brighter and potentially Italian. Whatever Magnus builds, I’m sure it’ll be a fine garage mate for his very cool BMW 2002.
Photos by Alen Haseta
1970 BMW 2002
Engine: BMW E46 M3 S54B32, Wiseco forged pistons , Pauter forged rods, balanced crankshaft, Nuke Performance 790cc injectors, modified intake manifold, custom-made velocity stacks, modified BMW 1M exhaust system with extra cutout , MaxxECU engine management system, do88 aluminum race radiator, modified firewall
Driveline: ZF BMW 535d transmission, custom shifter mount, modified transmission tunnel, Tenaci flywheel, Tenaci twin-plate clutch, BMW M3 E36. differential
Suspension/Brakes: Öhlins R&T coilovers with Millway Motorsport top mounts, modified BMW 2002tii arms , Sellholm Tuning anti-roll bars, Tenaci 6-piston front calipers, Tenaci 320mm front rotors, Tenaci 280mm rear rotors, hydraulic handbrake Top bearings: Bearings from
Wheels/Tires: Custom modified Alpina wheels by CR Custom Wheels, 17×8.5-inch front, 17×9.5-inch rear, Nankang AR1 tires 215/40R17 front, 235/40R17 rear
Exterior: Genuine BMW 2002 turbo fender flares & front air dam, BMW 354 Titan Silver paint
Interior: Recaro BMW Performance seats, BMW M seat belts, repainted door panels, custom leather-trimmed center console, LCD screen for ECU, Auto Meter gauges , aged Momo steering wheel, modified OBP adjustable E46 pedal box, custom mats
Magnus Thanks: Klara Hall, Torgny Granberg, Dennis Andersson, Fredrik Ström, Peter Fransson, Andreas Friberg, Figge Ohlsson, Fredrik Edholm, Björn Svensson