Saturday, March 24, 2012

WTS BMW E34 1JZ-GTE Twin Turbo

WTS BMW E34 1JZ-GTE Twin Turbo

The time has come for me to let go of my precious E34 1JZ-GTE. I could put up a regular WTS add but I thought my ride deserved better than that so here it is, the details of my WTS.

Firstly, the question that everyone has on their minds when they first view a WTS.

Why are you selling?
To be honest, I had no intention of letting go of my E34 1JZ which I bought in 2007 and converted in late-2009. My E34 1JZ is a daily driver and I was at Albert @ WP Auto getting some maintenance done when something else was also WTS without me having any intention to WTB. :-)

But..... my dream Bimmer was on sale and I managed to get a pretty good deal so.....

From white to black....
But that's another thread for another day....

Now I am currently the owner of two Bimmers and sadly, one has to go....

*asking price at the end of the post.

- 1993 BMW E34 520i (M50B20).
- Purchased in early-2007.
- Converted to 1JZ-GTE in late-2009. Details of the conversion are documented here:
- The 1JZ-GTE is also the newer non-VVTi version which is not affected by the PCV problems from the earlier 1JZ-GTE models. Details can be found in my post here:
- BBS RX wheels with original BBS Center Caps painted anthracite grey with 235/45 R17 tires.
- ATE Front Disc.
- Eibach springs.
- HID conversion.
- Clear front and rear signal indicator lights.
- Cream Leather interior.
- New DIN-66 Century Marathoner MF battery.
- Road tax valid until Jan 2013.

I first bought the E34 520i (M50B20) to replace my previous E30. I loved the shape of the E34 and for the first few years of ownership kept everything stock. I think all BMW owners are proud of driving a BMW and every effort was spent keeping it a pure BMW.

Unfortunately, perhaps I was also unlucky but I had many issues with the M50 and also the GM automatic gearbox which I completely rebuilt only to be faced with some major engine issues from the M50 just a couple of weeks after my very costly full gearbox rebuild.

I considered my options and as the cost of replacing the M50 with another BMW engine was roughly the same as converting it to a 1JZ-GTE, I decided for the latter for the hope of some Japanese reliability.

The conversion was done at the end of 2009 and aside from a rather costly waterpump replacement in late-2010 (, the 1JZ-GTE has been very reliable. No other major issues with the engine and after replacing the waterpump and unlike the M50, it doesn't use up any water and the radiator level stays exactly the same. There is also absolutely no smoke on startup even when cold in the mornings.

As I mentioned above, my E34 1JZ is a daily driver and it is inevitable that items wear and and some maintenance is required. As I had no intention of selling the car before, I had just sent it in to WP Auto to check and replace some worn out components of the front suspension and also to attend to some oil leaks from the engine. The oil leaks were from the rocker cover and have been fully rectified. The hydraulic fan motor and high pressure hydraulic hose was also found to be leaking and was also replaced. The battery was also replaced recently with a brand new DIN66 Century Marathoner MF battery.

The car is religiously serviced with fully synthetic engine oil and the ATF has also recently been changed by WP Auto also.

Selling Points:
- BMW looks, handling, ride with Toyota POWER (!!!) and reliability.
- Same power output as a E34/E39 540i, E60/F10 530i.
- Same fuel efficiency that I got from my old M50B20.
- I was very specific with what I wanted for the conversion and I wanted a 'stock' looking engine bay.

The ECU is located in the same place where the BMW ECU was, shielding it from heat and dust.

All wiring was routed in the same trunking as the original BMW wiring.

This is the ONLY 1JZ in the country (and possibly the world) running a standard 1JZ air filter assembly! The radiator is also from the 1JZ (an important point as the original BMW radiators were not really the most well built!). I also wanted to keep the powerful and quiet hydraulic fan from the 1JZ.

The intercooler is black and completely hidden in the front bumper for the sleeper look.

The battery was also relocated under the rear seats away from the heat of the engine bay.

I decided against the cone type exposed air filter as it would have also been sucking in hot air, being so closely located to the turbos. The stock 1JZ airscoop connect to the front BMW kidney's to suck in cold air.... cold air = more power! :-)

Of course an original K&N drop in air filter was fitted into the stock airbox.

No exhaust modifications other than to remove the original center box. The engine has a nice note to it but its not too loud.

ATE Disc's. No warping or vibration under braking. The brake master cylinder was also upgraded for increased stopping power.

- All meters in the instrument cluster work except for the MPG meter which requires the BMW ECU to work properly.

- To preserve the stock look of the car, the original gearlever was maintained.

- A HKS Turbo Timer was installed to allow the engine and turbos to cool down along with an Apexi Turbo Pressure Gauge in a custom fabricated housing.

- Cosmetically the car is a small-nose E34 (which I personally think looks better than the wide-nose latter models) with clear indicator lights all round (much better than the dated yellow lights).

- The interior trim and seats have been recently steam cleaned and detailed.

The Problems:
Naturally when viewing the car the next question would be what's wrong with it? In the interest of full disclosure and against what is normally put up in a WTS, these are some of the areas which require attention. I considered fixing all of these issues before putting it up for sale but have decided that I didn't have the time and energy to attend to them.

While the car is mechanically sound and the interior is in pretty good condition, cosmetically there are a few issues:
- The front lip has a crack in it from an unfortunate parking incident.
- The black lower section of the car needs repainting.
- There is some rust in the top section of the boot.
- The headliner is also sagging (and would have been my next project if I wasn't selling the car).

As with all car purchases, one of the other main questions is whether the car has been in an accident. The car was involved in a minor accident which affected the front right of the car about a year ago. The bonnet was slightly dented and the black plastic headlight surrounds was damaged. Nothing else was affected including the front bumper. There have been no other incidents before or since.

For additional information on my E34 1JZ, you can check out my previous posts here:

My conversion was also posted on bimmerforums:

A quick check on ( will reveal that BMW E34's go for between RM10,000 to RM30,000 with the majority going for around RM20k+.

My E34 isn't perfect but it isn't trashed as well and it does have leather seats AND original BBS RX wheels!!!

Assuming that you were interested in performing the same conversion on one of the cheaper E34's available the cost would be RM15k for the E34 (with cloth seats and on standard rims!!!) and another RM10k for the conversion, JPJ approval, etc. for RM25k.

As I am well aware that my E34 isn't a perfect example which I can put on sale (and hope to actually sell) for RM25k+++, I am asking for what I feel is a very reasonable price for a 280hp E34 with Japanese reliability, leaving the new owner with RM3k+ for any repairs or touch-ups that may be required. (A 'new' used 1JZ halfcut is only RM3-4k anyway).

My asking price is only:


Please give me a call at 016-6603217 if you are interested in viewing the car.*

* as this is a 1993 model, arranging for a loan might be difficult. It would be appreciated if any prospective buyers are able to pay in cash or have an alternative means of financing available before viewing the car. Tq.

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