Here is BMW 335i racecar build part 8 of my ongoing series. You can read previous installments by clicking here.

As said in the previous update, my 335i had gone from its original factory Alpine White, to some kind of BMW M2 Orange, and then instead of going back to white, the suggestion from Johan’s Auto was to make it bright yellow, and ship it to Team SavSpeed Racing to get the engine put in, which is exactly what we did.

Team SavSpeed Racing magic

While the car was in paint, and assembly, Sav Gualtieri, the main man at Team SavSpeed Racing, had been busy putting together the N54 motor that was going to do duty in the 335i. But as Sav is known for building some of the fastest road and track BMWs in SA, he wouldn’t settle for just a straight N54 build.

N54 gets a makeover

The only standard stuff that remained was a new N54 block, along with a fully reconditioned N54 cylinder head. From this point forward Sav started working his BMW magic. All the internals were changed, along with the fuel system, to better suit the compression ratio that Sav wanted.

The tiny twin-turbo setup was dropped in favour of a Team SavSpeed Racing specific, much larger, single turbocharger that mounted on their patented SavSpeed manifold along with the oil cooler, intercooler and other plumbing goodies.

Powermods to control

In deciding what engine management system to run, because the standard OEM BMW system would simply just not do for our race application, we went to our good friend, Domingos de Carvalho, who produces the Powermods system locally.

The reason for this is Powermods is considered to be the most reliable, most flexible and most affordable ECU on the South African market right now, while having more than double the capacity of the rest of the competition.

It comes to life

With all the bits and pieces in their right places, and the engine turned over by hand, then dry started for oil pressure. It was time to plug everything in, throw in some pump fuel and fire up the 335i for the first time on the dyno. The car started with a single push of the starter button, barked into life, and then settled into a menacing idle immediately. All good signs that this is an engine built correctly.

So far, we have done a few km on the dyno at a conservative 0,9 bar of boost, and the car revs up quick and is as smooth as anything. The engine made an easy 300 kW of power and 600 N.m of torque, on the wheels, in this start-up state of tune.

You can listen to the car’s engine in the video below.

The next update will have seen us get some real-world mileage in under the belt, do another oil change and headed back to the dyno and start tuning for real horsepower. And we will be finishing the interior, and heading to the track for the car’s first shakedown run…