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E36 M3 (1992-1999) {Euro - S50 B32 321hp @ 7400 rpm} {U.S. - S52 B32 240 hp @ 6000 rpm}
Total Produced: 71,212 - Years Produced: 1992 to 1999


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Old Sun, Nov-10-2013, 04:51:45 PM   #1
Machtig
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Default OEM Rear Fog Light Retrofit DIY

I recently completed an OEM rear fog light retrofit on my '98 M3 coupe. It is time intensive, but other than the fuse box wiring is not too difficult. I will get into it shortly, but there is a laundry list of wiring connectors, switches, parts, etc you will need to order from a dealer (I just used getbmwparts.com, but there are other sources)--dont let it dissuade you, nothing is terribly expensive. I completed the retrofit along with the Euro headlight aim control and Euro powered rear vent windows retrofits so the car was already broken down to parade rest, so it wasn't as big of a deal.

The actual step by step instructions that follow were almost completely written by Mr. John Firestone, only the sections in red were written by me, and just to clarify some details John may have left out that I had questions about. I created the wiring diagram shown below based on John's detailed instructions, and I think it really helps show just how simple this retrofit is, assuming you have basic wiring skills and the required parts. All photos shown are from my installation


Courtesy of John Firestone, clarifications in red courtesy of yours truly.
Wie Nebel in Herbst - there are few places with so many cars that see such thick fog as Germany does on cloud-free Autumn nights - fog so thick that lowbeams are well nigh useless and seeing to the edge of the road becomes a challenge. On such nights, the problem, however, is not seeing but being seen. Every year there are massive pile ups because someone could not see the car or truck in front of them in time.

Rear fog lights are standard equipment throughout Europe where they are considered more important than front fog lights for safe driving in the fall and winter months. They are a somewhat drastic, last-ditch measure against being rear ended when the visibility becomes extremely bad (less than 50 yards) because of fog or snow. While most parts of the United States rarely see fog thick enough to need them, some parts do. In this article, I describe how I enabled the rear fog lights on a U.S. market '96 318is (these instruction worked perfectly on my M3 and should work on any other E36)to increase my safety during its first year in Germany.

U.S. market E36 3ers use their own wiring harnesses, switches, relays and instrument clusters that delete almost all the contacts, wires, lamps and fuses needed for rear foglights. These things are not difficult to retrofit but the job can be a bit tedious. You will need to run wires from the fusebox to the back of the car, which probably will mean lifting the driver's side carpeting. You may need to do this anyway, if you are upgrading your sound system, for example. Adding rear foglights might not be much more work.

I will assume your car already has front foglights and that you have access to a good self-repair car manual, such as the E36 manual from Haynes. I will add details not given by Haynes. To enable rear fog lights, you will need the following parts:


-(4) fuse strip/relay contacts--Real OEM listed three different contacts, they are all inexpensive, so I ordered all (4) contacts for all three part numbers. Two are for a the 1.5-2.5 mm2 wire size and one is for the 0.5-1.0 mm2 wire size. I don't recall which ones I ended up using, but all the contacts were less than $10.
0.5-1.0 mm2 wire size p/n 61131370691
1.5-2.5 mm2 wire size p/n 61131370692
1.5-2.5 mm2 wire size p/n 61138377732

-a 7.5 A fuse--Note: the fuse box cover calls for a 10 A fuse in this location so that is what I used.
-some 0.75 mm2 and 0.5 mm2 wire
-a two button foglight switch (Euro switch), P/N 61311387054
-(1) AMP/ELO female contact P/N 61130005197--this is only if you upgrade to the Euro cluster and want the factory rear fog indicator light to illuminate when the rear fogs are on

-a 12 volt indicator light (yellow recommended) OR upgrade to a Euro cluster
-(5) 2.5 mm round female contacts for 0.5-1.0 mm2 wire, P/N 61131376202 [strip of 25]--Not sure what John is talking about regarding the "strip of 25", they come in singles, and I think I used (4) of them, but bought sixteen, as they are only a few cents each.
-(1) 2.5 mm round male contact, BMW P/N 61131376202 [strip of 25]--Not sure what John is talking about regarding the "strip of 25" and the p/n is the same as the female contacts above. I didn't use any of these.
-a pair of white "European" rear turn signals -or a couple of connector pins pulled from an old rear lamp cluster -- I wanted to go back to US spec amber turn signals so I retrofitted the pins from my old Euro tail light assemblies, more details to follow.
-(0-2) green, two-output headlight relays, P/N 61 36 8 353 447, depending on the number already in your car (more anon)--I bought (2) and used them both.
-Proper marine grade heat shrink tubing. I picked up two large assortments at Harbor Freight for not much money.
-Proper soldering iron and rosin core solder
-lighted magnifying glass--some of these connectors, clips, ect are tiny, and my eyes aren't what they used to be.


PROCEDURE

There are enough things to disassemble and enough parts to remove that you may wish take notes and save parts as they come out in manilla envelopes. Anything that accepts electrical contacts - a connector, a fuse clip or a relay socket - also has a contact retaining rod or contact retaining shell which you must first remove before you add a contact. Do not forget to do this. If there is a retaining shell, make sure to first remove the shell and thread the contact and wire through it *before* inserting the contact into the connector.

1. To begin, read out any DME fault codes and then disconnect battery.

2. Connect the foglight and headlights relays to fuse F17.
Construct a Y-cable with a common fuse strip contact and two 30 cm (one foot) branches with fuse strip contacts at their ends. Open the fuse box and remove the four Torx 10 screws holding down the top of the fuse box. Remove the fuses to the left of fuse position 17. Lift out the top of the fuse box to expose the wiring underneath. Remove the fuse strip holding fuses 11-20. There is a locking clip at one end that you push inward. Do this and then push the fuse clip downward and out of the fuse box. The fuse block should have a white contact retaining rod with an obvious lever you need to pull. Don't. You will likely break it. Instead, using a jeweler's screw driver, first press in the small, white nubbin at the other end to pop out the lever, then pull out the retaining rod. Push the common fuse clip contact into one side of the fuse F17 until it clicks into place. It should go in easily. Remove the foglight relay, K47, and headlight relay, K48. These are the second and third relays in the middle row of relays. Unclip and remove their socket's white plastic relay guide / contact retainers. Push the other contacts into the center terminals of sockets K47 and K48. They should go in easily. Replace the white plastic relay guides. Re-insert K47 and K48 if they have a fifth center contact. Otherwise, swap them for green relays that do (cf. the parts list). Wire fuse F17 to the passenger compartment foglight switch. Remove the 2-3 screws fastening the driver's side kick panel (lower facia panel (Haynes 28.9). Slide out the doorward side of the panel until it unclips, slide the panel downward and out. Unscrew and remove the diagnostic socket at the back bottom of the U.S. knee protection panel you have just exposed. Remove the three bolts holding the U.S. knee protection panel; as the panel comes free, unplug the connectors to the ignition key and seatbelt reminder chimes. Cut off a 1.5 m of 0.75 mm2 wire (ideally yellow/violet) and attach a fuse contact to one end. Using a tape covered screwdriver, scrunch a hole along the side of the wire bundle exiting the rear of the fusebox and entering the passenger compartment. Push the bare end of the wire along the side of the bundle; when you can reach it from the other side, pull the wire into the passenger compartment. Push the contact on the other side of the wire into the free side of fuse F17. Replace the fuse strip contact retainer, push the fuse block back in, replace the fuses, and insert a 7.5 A fuse into position 17. Slide out the foglight switch by reaching up behind the dash, and squeezing it at the sides (Haynes 12.20). Unclip it from its connector. Route the wire to the foglight switch, following the existing cables. Tie it along the way with cable ties or pushing it under the lacing where it looser. Cut the wire to match the others going to the foglight switch. Allow enough slack to install and remove the foglight switch and attach a 2.5 mm round female contact to the wire. Find the detent that fits a small hole in the foglight switch connector contact retaining shell. Using a knife blade or a small jeweller's screwdriver gently pry the shell away from the bump and slide it off, up the wires away from the contacts. Thread the wire from the fusebox through position four of the contact retaining shell and insert it into the foglight connector. It should click easily into place. If you can find an existing cable that runs from the dash to the rear of the car, you may skip the following steps which are rather involved and took me a couple days to do. (I was also installing electric rear vent windows).

3. Remove the front seat and seat belt.

4. Remove the rear seat.

5. Remove the hood release lever and its speaker cover (first half
of Haynes 11.9).

Note the slot receptable in the carpet that the speaker cover plugs into. Remove the the round screw knob that holds down the carpet near the gas pedal.

6. Remove the side trim strips.
Carefully unclip the trim strips from the rear door sill (if you have a four door car) and the front door sill (Haynes 26.3 and 26.4) The trim strips may pull straight out. Alternatively, if you have a coupe with a single long strip (such as the author's '96 318is), you may need to lift the back of the trim strip up, off and a plastic disk and then move it out and back down. The entire strip will then slide toward the front of the car and come free. If this is the case, you will later need two people to reinstall the trim strip.

7. Remove the driver's side rear seat bolster (Haynes 11.26)

8. Wire the foglight switch to connector X13.
Pull back the carpeting in the driver's footwell to reveal X13, a coupled pair of hunky, black 30 pin connectors. Move the slide on the side of one of the connectors until they come apart. Separate the connectors and slide each connector's contact retainer shell away from its contacts. Following the existing cables where possible, lay out an 0.75 mm, preferably yellow/white wire from the female connector to the fog light switch connector. Crimp a female 2.5 mm round contact on each end, thread the ends through the
contact retainer shells at the correct positions and then insert the contacts into position 5 of the female X13 connector and position 3 of the fog light connector. Slide the corresponding retain shells back onto their connectors.
Decide where you will put the rear fog light in-use indicator. Given how obnoxious rear fog lights are to other drivers, it is important that they have an obvious indicator light to remind the driver to shut them off once they are no longer needed. The rear fog lights have their assigned indicator in the instrument cluster. This is probably the best of all places to add one, except for three complications. To remove the instrument cluster, you must first remove the driver's airbag and steering wheel. This is not the most agreeable task and if done terribly wrong it is dangerous. The instrument cluster connector also requires a special contact that is part of a BMW in-house repair kit. This may mean having to buy a whole kit of contacts rather than just the one you need. Finally, many U.S. market instruments clusters have the yellow, rear foglight pictogram blacked out.

If you really must have the indicator where it was intended to be, you will need a contact from packet H of Parts Kit IV for On Board Electronics (an parts kit for BMW mechanics) Note, BMW now offers the correct connector, which is shown in the parts list above, and a 1.2W indicator lamp, P/N 62111368299. If your instrument cluster has a blacked out pictogram (it should be just right of one for the front fog lights), you might mask out an aperture hole at that spot, carefully remove the paint with a cotton ear swap of solvent, and then solder in a high-brightness yellow LED connected to a 680 ohm resistor. Alternatively, the really adventurous might swap in an Australian or U.K. market instrument cluster....

That said, it is probably easier to mount the indicator light in one of the spare plastic panels on the center console just in front of the gear shift lever. These pop out which makes for easier machining.

9. Run wires to the rear fog lights.
Unhook the back of the driver's side carpet from the rear seat riser and lift up the carpet along the driver's side of the floor, to reveal a square plastic conduit covering cables running from the front of the car toward the rear. Open the trunk and pull back the carpet along the driver's side wall of the trunk to gain access to the cable route as it enters and passes around the trunk. Lay out one 0.75 mm and one 0.5 mm, preferably yellow/white wire
from nearly the driver's side rear lamp cluster to the foglight switch connector. Extend the 0.5 mm wire beyond the foglight switch so that it reaches the indicator light. Route the 0.75 mm wire to connector X13. Crimp on a male 2.5 mm contact, thread it through the proper position of X13's contact retainer shell and insert the contact into position 5 of the male X13 connector. Slide the contact retain shell back onto the connector and push the two X13 connectors back together. Remove the connectors from the two rear lamps clusters. Slide back their contact retaining shells. The loose ends of the two wires from the front of the car, will become a solder junction, X1214, with the wires to the rear foglights. Find an easily accessible place to tuck these wires with some slack to make it easy to get to the junction. Route an 0.75 mm wire from the junction to the driver's side rear lamp connector.
Route a 0.5 mm wire from the junction to the passenger's side rear lamp connector. There is a slightly destructive but correct way of doing this which is to punch out the center pins of the studs holding down the trim strip running along the spare tire well from the one lamp cluster to the other and then pull off the strip. Then there is the hack electrician's way which is as follows:
-Remove the two plastic nuts that holding down the flat plastic floor panel kitty-corner from the battery.
-Remove the battery cover/first aid kit tray if you have one.
-Gently pull out the bottom of the trim strip near the battery and thread the cable from the passenger side rear lamp connector into the spare tire well.
-Follow the cable running underneath the trim, staying inside of the plastic stud.
-Gently pull the left mid-section of the trim-strip then the right and thread the wire underneath the trim and above the two bottom spring clips.
-Gently pull out the bottom of the trim strip near the driver'sside rear lamp cluster and thread the wire upward, staying inside of the cable until the wire reaches the left lamp cluster.
-Pull out the bottom of the moulding, first one side then the other and very gently tension the wire so that it rises up inside the trim strip.
-Wrap and solder insulate the 0.5 and 0.75 mm wires from the rear lamp clusters with the two wires from up front, to form junction X1214. Insulate the junction.
-Crimp 2.5 mm diameter female contacts onto the wires running to the rear lamp clusters, feed the contacts through the correct positions of the contact retainer shells.
-If you have a 4-door, on the driver's side, insert the contact into pin 1, and on the passenger's side, into pin 6.
-If you have a 2-door, on the driver's side, insert the contact into pin 3, and on the passenger's side, into pin 7.
-Slide the retaining shells back on.
-Hook up the rear fog lamp indicator.
-Connect the 0.5 mm rear foglight wire to indicator lamp.
-Connect the other side of the lamp to the nearest ground lug using a 0.5 mm brown wire.

10. Modifying the rear lamp clusters.
If you have wanted to and have not already, you might take this opportunity to replace your rear lamp clusters with white, "clear European" turn signals. These have rear fog lamps that work. If you have stock U.S. rear lamps, you are almost there. You just need to add the missing pins for the rear fog lamps.

If you have a helpful BMW dealer, ask them to give you a damaged rear lamp cluster which you can salvage for pins. Between accidents and water-loggings, you may not have to wait long. There appear to be two types of rear lamp clusters: an old style which had a removable foil and plastic circuit board and the current style which has foil traces tack-glued to the housing. If you have either style, you should be able to solder and epoxy in the missing pin. You may have to first drill out the corresponding pin if you are fitting pins from one style into the other.

If you have the new style, it is pretty easy to pop off the main plastic shroud and fully expose the pins. Using a knife, pry off the mushroom heads (leaving the stems) that are holding down the plastic connector shell. The shell is otherwise free to move. Remove just enough so that you can pull off the shell. After you put the shell back on, scratch the stems and the plastic around them, mix and apply some two part epoxy, let it set then harden it in an oven at 70 deg C for a couple hours.

11. Reassemble car
Once everything is tested and found to be in order. Put the car back together in the reverse order you took it apart. The tightening torque on the seat belt and seat related bolts is 45 Nm.


Wiring Diagram Note: the perfectly straight lines in the center of the diagram are an artifact from my junker scanner, please disregard


Fuse Strip Relay Contacts


Proper soldered fuse strip relay contact


Proper heat shrinked connection


2.5 mm round female contact


AMP/ELO female contact


Headlight/foglight relay


Headlight/foglight relay connector where you will insert one of the fuse relay contacts


Empty fuse slot F17 just to right of blue fuse in slot F18


Factory original foglight switch connector with the two additional wires and connectors necessary


Blue connector on far left where you will insert the AMP/ERO connector to be able to illuminate the rear fog indicator in the Euro cluster. Note: I do not recall the correct pin number to insert the connector into, just use your multimeter's continuity setting to check the continuity between the pin and the bulb and insert the connector into that pin.


10 A rear fog lamp fuse and two new dark green relays (arrows)


New Euro fog lamp switch for front and rear fogs


Euro instrument cluster with front/rear fog indicators




Rear fogs off


Rear fogs on


The following is a Q & A email I had with John about the retrofit. My questions in red, his answers in black.

> I read your rear fog DIY, and have a question about the parts needed to make
> a euro cluster light up the rear fog indicator. You mentioned you need a
> "contact from packet H of Parts Kit IV for On Board Electronics (a parts kit
> for BMW mechanics)". I've googled using all the tricks I know but I cannot
> locate this parts pack? Any ideas where I can find it short of going to the
> dealer, and will they even know what I'm talking about?


Since I wrote that, BMW added the individual contacts to their parts
system. I am pretty sure the one you want is p/n 61 13 0 005 197, a
single, wired AMP/ELO female contact with 50 cm of 0.5 mm black
wire. I can probably dig up a part number for the bare contact if you
have a compatible crimping tool and die, and want to run the correct
wire all the way into the connector.

> It appears that you use the headlight and foglight relays just as a
> power source--ie the full amperage that the lights draw go thru the
> foglight switch.


That's right. The UN-ECE regulations, which most of the world outside
the U.S. follows, requires that the driver can only switch on the rear
fog lights when either the low beams or front fog lights are on, or in
this case, when either the low beam or front fog light relay is on and
providing power to its second, normally off contact (you are adding).

> Second question is why do you run the 0.5 mm2 indicator light wire
> all the way to the rear of the car just to tap into that X 1214
> junction (which I think is a junction you made up? )


The car was only a month old at the time, so I wired them as the
factory did: to not confuse anyone else who might work on the wiring
during the warranty period. The factory wired a junction along the
left, rear trunk wall, for the rear fog light and all the other rear
lights, to accomadate the trailer wiring on cars ordered with a trailer
hitch. U.S. cars don't make any junctions in the back because BMW NA
did not offer the E36 with a trailer hitch, either as a factory option
or a dealer add on.

There is nothing wrong with connecting the rear fog light indicator at
or near the rear fog light switch, particularly if you live where
people don't know or expect the standard wiring.

> Finally, why didn't you stay with the 0.75mm2 wire to the right
> (passenger side) tail light? I realize the amps are low, again, just
> curious.


I have not crunched the numbers, but I expect an 0.75mm2 wire keeps
the voltage drop within spec when you have a car and trailer with two
rear foglights each, or 4 x 21 = 84W of rear foglights total. The
larger wire size also identifies it as going to the switch rather than
the instrument cluster.

I hope that goes some way to answering your questions!
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Cosmos Black 1998 ///M3 - Euro Six-speed and driveshaft, Euro headlamps and aim control retrofit, Euro rear fog light retrofit, Euro rear power vent window retrofit, Euro fire extinguisher and first aid kit, Euro instrument cluster, OEM LTW wheels, M50 manifold conversion w/ BavAuto software, Stromung cat back exhaust, Ground Control Coilovers (350/450), UUC Ultimate FCABs, SPC adjustable rear lower control arms, new OEM RTABs, GC shims, GC RSMs, AKG 95A rear subframe and diff bushings, Michelin PSSs, CD43 radio, Soundplicity III bluetooth/iPhone integration

Last edited by Machtig; Sun, Nov-10-2013 at 05:20:28 PM.
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Old Mon, Nov-11-2013, 03:05:51 AM   #2
Jrrrrrrr
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Default Re: OEM Rear Fog Light DIY

This is by far the best DIY I've ever seen for this mod.

Also, great job doing the electrical wiring properly. Hack-job wiring with hardware store electrical terminals are a major pet peeve of mine.

Edit: also saw the BMW part numbers for the AMP terminals. I need to order some soon and that saves me some time searching the Tyco/AMP catalogs!

Last edited by Jrrrrrrr; Mon, Nov-11-2013 at 03:09:51 AM.
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Old Mon, Nov-11-2013, 03:16:07 AM   #3
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Old Mon, Nov-11-2013, 01:24:40 PM   #4
Machtig
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Default Re: OEM Rear Fog Light DIY

Yeah, I ordered several AMP/ELO contacts because if you do swap to the Euro cluster, you'll need another one to get the oil temp gauge to work.
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Old Mon, Nov-11-2013, 04:59:37 PM   #5
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Default Re: OEM Rear Fog Light DIY

This should be a sticky!
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Old Mon, Nov-11-2013, 05:21:43 PM   #6
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Default Re: OEM Rear Fog Light DIY

[QUOTE=Jrrrrrrr;1066405366]
Also, great job doing the electrical wiring properly. Hack-job wiring with hardware store electrical terminals are a major pet peeve of mine.
/QUOTE]

This! I still remember with horror the orange splice connectors my car's PO had used to splice in the SPAL fan...
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Old Mon, Nov-11-2013, 08:07:39 PM   #7
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Default Re: OEM Rear Fog Light DIY

[/QUOTE]

This! I still remember with horror the orange splice connectors my car's PO had used to splice in the SPAL fan...[/QUOTE]

wire nuts should never be used on cars....
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Old Wed, Nov-13-2013, 04:11:01 AM   #8
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Default Re: OEM Rear Fog Light DIY

Great DIY, I am kind of confused because I think there is a difference between amber taillights and euro clear taillights which I have them now. It appears to me that the rear fog light lamps are on all the time when headlights are on, they are bright similar to you second picture.
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Old Sun, Nov-17-2013, 06:04:14 PM   #9
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Default Re: OEM Rear Fog Light DIY

Quote:
Originally Posted by roadmax05 View Post
Great DIY, I am kind of confused because I think there is a difference between amber taillights and euro clear taillights which I have them now. It appears to me that the rear fog light lamps are on all the time when headlights are on, they are bright similar to you second picture.
If they are on all the time, your wiring is jacked up or you have the wrong wattage bulb installed. The Euro clear lamps already have the male contact in the connector attached to the light, but on the connector that plugs into the light, there is no corresponding female contact on a US spec car. The bulb that goes in the rear fog location is a dual filament bulb. the lower wattage filament is for the parking lights, and the higher wattage filament is only energized when you activate the rear fogs, which on a US spec car (unless retrofitted) you can't.
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Old Sun, Nov-17-2013, 07:11:53 PM   #10
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Default Re: OEM Rear Fog Light DIY

Quote:
Originally Posted by Machtig View Post
If they are on all the time, your wiring is jacked up or you have the wrong wattage bulb installed. The Euro clear lamps already have the male contact in the connector attached to the light, but on the connector that plugs into the light, there is no corresponding female contact on a US spec car. The bulb that goes in the rear fog location is a dual filament bulb. the lower wattage filament is for the parking lights, and the higher wattage filament is only energized when you activate the rear fogs, which on a US spec car (unless retrofitted) you can't.
I actually checked and confirmed what you are explaining, all bulbs with sockets are mounted, the rear fogs do not turn ON, it is just taillight that appears too bright and the brake light even brighter.



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Discussing OEM Rear Fog Light DIY in the E36 M3 (1992-1999) Forum - {Euro - S50 B32 321hp @ 7400 rpm} {U.S. - S52 B32 240 hp @ 6000 rpm}
Total Produced: 71,212 - Years Produced: 1992 to 1999 at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)