29 October 2010|
For the money, there isn’t much that can beat the style, prestige and performance of a BMW M3. With hot styling and all kinds of appeal, the aftermarket has pounced on platform with plenty of performance parts. The team at Auto Tech Interiors (ATI) wanted to make this particular M3 a rolling showcase for their custom gauges and unique pods.
As a company, Auto Tech Interiors has made quite an impact within a short time in the aftermarket industry. Enthusiast Calvin Eng is the owner of this M3 project and the brains behind ATI. Although he originally picked up this M3 to be a daily driver, it has spent most of its life in the shop under the knife with modifications. For now, there isn’t much that the 420hp 4.0L V8 leaves to be desired. It revs freely and provides usable torque for a large powerband. Eng added a K&N intake and an Active Autowerke Signature exhaust and X-pipe for that killer sound.
Inside the cabin, ATI went to work with their popular steering column mounted EPod housing the STRI gauges. These precision gauges were installed to monitor: volts, oil pressure and water temperature of the fiery German V8.
The attention then turned to some custom wheels for the right stance. True to his sport compact roots, he went to the experts at Mackin Industries for some sweet Advan RSD wheels, measuring 20x9-inches (front) and 20x9.5-inch (rear) with Pirelli P-Zero tires. Lurking behind the spokes are a set of Brembo GT brakes using a 6-piston/15-inch rotor up front and a 4-piston chomping down on a matching 15-inch linked up with stainless steel lines. In order to look the part, a four-piece Amuse aero kit was ordered from Japan and installed along with Macht Schnell kidney grilles to complete the look. Inside the cabin, ATI went to work with their popular steering column mounted EPod housing the STRI gauges. These precision gauges were installed to monitor: volts, oil pressure and water temperature of the fiery German V8. When it came to upgrading the multimedia and entertainment, the audio system had to work around the integrated factory head unit, using the factory CD player.
The team at Tune Time Stereo & Alarm bypassed the factory D/A converter in the BMW factory head unit and ran digital fiber optic cable straight through, bypassing the poor sounding factory amp and into the AGW+ integration/DSP processor which uses very hi-end Burr Brown D/A converters. The digital signal then goes through DSP processor section and now comes out through the 8 channel analog outputs. The signal / noise ratio of this unit is a stunning 115db, which is of high-end home audio quality. Then the very clean signal is fed into the 3 audiophile-sounding, Mosconi by AudioSystem amplifiers, which are designed and built in Italy. They power the Focal 100KRS components in the front and rear.
To bring the bass in front, a shallow-mount pair of Audio System AX08 8-inch subwoofers were installed as drop in replacements for the factory under seat subwoofers. For additional bass reinforcement a Focal 33KX multi mag subwoofer resides in a custom trunk enclosure. With all of the right parts to build upon, this BMW is clearly heading in the right direction. We’re sure more mods are in this M3s future, but for now the team at ATI is focused on delivering new and innovative gauges and pods for tuners everywhere.