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BMW M history

BMW M3 E30 Convertible

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BMW M3 E30 Coupé

The BMW M3 E30 convertible combines the drivetrain, chassis and much of the bodywork from the BMW M3 E30 Coupe with the open-top body style of the E30 3 Series convertible.


1988-1991 BMW M3 E30 Convertible
Type
M3 E30 Convertible '88-'89
M3 E30 Convertible '89-'90
Engine
Code
S14 B23
S14 B23 Kat
Displacement
2302cc
2302cc
Cylinders
4
4
Fuel type
Gasoline
Gasoline
Power
147kW | 200HP
158kW | 215HP
Torque@RPM
240Nm@4750Nm
244Nm@4750Nm
Performance
Top Speed
226km/h | 140mph
226km/h | 140mph
Acceleration
0-100km/h
0-60mph

7.4s

7.3s
Fuel Consumption (l/100km | mpg)
Combined
-
-

Dimensions
Length
4360mm
Width
1675mm
Height
1365mm

Source for technical specifications: BMW Heaven.

A six-cylinder E30 3 Series convertible prototype with M3 bodywork and all-wheel-drive was displayed at the 1985 Frankfurt motor show. The production version, with the four-cylinder S14 engine and rear-wheel drive chassis, did not appear until the middle of 1988.

Because of its low production volume, the E30 M3 convertible was assembled by hand at BMW M's Garching facility, much like the BMW M5 E28 and BMW M5 E34. Bodies were supplied from the normal E30 assembly lines, then fitted at Garching with the special drivetrain, chassis and interior.

Versions and Production Numbers

There were three versions of the E30 M3 convertible, all in left-hand drive and all built to European specification. Cars produced in 1988 and 1989 use the standard 2.3-liter S14 engine in either non-catalyst (200 hp) or catalyst (195 hp) form. After nearly a year out of production, a second batch of catalyst-equipped cars was assembled starting in March, 1990. These have the later 215-hp version of the S14 engine.

  • ECE (non-cat): 136 built from 06/88 thru 09/88 + from 04/89 thru 06/89
  • ECE (cat/195 hp): 174 built from 07/88 thru 09/88 + from 03/89 thru 06/89
  • ECE (cat/215 hp): 476 built from 03/90 thru 06/91

Drivetrain

Aside from the structural reinforcements fitted to all E30 convertibles, the E30 M3 convertible is mechanically identical to the hardtop.

Chassis

The E30 M3 convertible uses slightly different springs and shocks to compensate for the car's added weight (increased by almost 400 pounds over the coupe). The suspension, steering, brakes, wheels and tires are otherwise identical to those of the BMW M3 E30 Coupe.

Cosmetics

 The E30 M3 convertible shares most of the coupe’s body panels, save for the trunk lid, which is a stock E30 convertible item and is not equipped with a rear spoiler. The convertible top is also identical to the one fitted to the regular E30 models and is power-operated as standard.

Interior

Like the closed car, the E30 M3 convertible's interior features sport seats, an M steering wheel (in one of two versions) and the M instrument cluster. The convertibles were also fitted with the "M3" door sill plates used on the M3 Evolution models. Cars equipped with optional leather upholstery have the M tri-color stripes on both front and rear seats, as well as unique door panels with diagonal pleating.

Options

The E30 M3 convertible was generally equipped with more standard features than the closed car. All were fitted with power windows and a power-operated folding soft top. The standard E30 M3 options were all available, as was a removable hardtop with rear window defroster and an extended leather interior including leather on the center console, door panels and door pulls. A number of special-order features not found on the usual option list (phone, fax, suede interior trim, leather dashboard, etc.) could also be requested due to the model's hand-built assembly.

Special Versions

There were no official special editions of the E30 M3 convertible, but it is thought that at least one example was built with the 220-hp engine from the E30 M3 Evolution II. It is not known if this car also featured the Evo II's cosmetic items.

Source: bmwmregistry.com

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