This is my bonus check car (who says hard work doesn't pay off). Of course, I couldn't leave it stock :D
I installed the usual Bilstein/Tokico Sport suspension package, all M3 spec bushings, M3 rear swaybar, and put a mildy aggressive alignment (based on M3) on it.
Later (due to driver error and some OLD ass transmission bushings), I moneyshifted the M50 and bent a few valves . . . DAMNIT!!! I got the car towed to local BMW Indy, Imports Only. Olin and I discussed what to do next with the car. After he pulled the head, he found that the bent valves didn't damage the head and only nicked a few pistons. I didn't over rev it toooo bad. Something like 8600 rpm . . .
Anyway, Olin hooked me up on some valves he had and I provided some M3 cams, software, M3 DSII wheels, new street and slightly used race rubber (mounted on the stock wheels) and new transmission bushings . . . M3 Lite was born. It was majority M3 without the chassis reinforcements, the 3.0L motor, and M3 spec transmission.
After the rebuilt head was installed, I began terrorizing the SCR-SCCA Street Modified classed. My car was heavily outclass against all of the turbo rally buggies (EVO, STI). While those cars where indeed faster and piloted by good drivers, I won the class through consistency; never out of the top 3, one 5th place and even a few 1st place trophies :D
I did a few track days in it and knew I need one thing . . .MORE POWER. Sure 200hp/200tq was fun, but the little M50 made all of it's power in the upper region of the tach (4000-7200 was a dream). After looking at doing a 3.2L swap ($$$$$) and LS1 swap ($$$$$$$$), I found out a guy in GA that was building mounts to swap in a Ford 5.0L. Matt of E36V8 crafted some mounts (engine and transmission) as well as wrote a VERY detailed swap manual all for the < $300 . . . Now add your flavor of 302 and you can do the swap for the price of a 3.2L motor . . . .
Let's see now . . .300hp/300tq, parts store availability, cheap and OVERLOADED aftermarket and MORE POWER in a similar weight package . . . "OH MY YES" (Farnsworth).
I have a budget of $5K for this car . . . I've completely stripped the interior (aiming for 2400lbs w/o driver) and the 302 is on the stand and nearly complete :D
Here are some pictures: 325is=>350is