BMW’s Motorsports division is famous for taking regular production BMW vehicles and reworks them with a race-inspired ethos in mind. The first-generation E30 M3 was a road legal homologated version of their Group A racecar sold to the public.
Whilst that car had a high revving four-cylinder engine that made it so fun, the E90 generation had essentially double the engine and is distinguished with the rest of the generations with it’s sonorous high-revving V8.
Sold from 2007-2013, the E90 generation continues the spirit of the first generation, albeit with a much more grown-up attitude.
This BMW E90 M3 Service Guide will be a guide for owners to continue enjoying their vehicle while maintaining all the components that make it so special.
The E90 generation 3 series can be broken down to three main body styles sold in North America. The E90 is the four-door sedan, while the E92 is the coupe version. The hard-top convertible version is distinguished as the E93 internally. The BMW E90 M3 Service Guide covers all three body styles of this generation.
Engine, Oil, Transmission, Clutch
The S65 4.0L naturally aspirated dual-overhead cam V8 under the hood of the E90 generation M3 is an engineering marvel.
Producing 414hp at 8,300 RPM and 295 lb-ft of torque at 3,900 RPM, it boasts an impressive 103.5 hp/L.
It can be optioned with either a 6-speed manual transmission, or a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. To achieve this impressive performance, the engine is under a relatively high stress tolerance.
Therefore, the vehicle is constantly monitoring itself and has a feature BMW calls Conditional Based Services, or CBS, that alerts the driver of maintenance requirements based on driving conditions. Nevertheless, the manufacturer, as well as the BMW E90 M3 Service Guide recommends has a recommended service schedule that should put a framework on what the service is like.
It is recommended to do an oil change and filter service at least once in every 2 years or 15,000 miles of driving.
A high-quality 10W-60 weight synthetic oil is recommended to ensure proper protection and lubrication of this highly strung engine. Another biannual recommendation is to flush and change the brake fluid. This is to prevent any moisture and air bubbles from detracting from the brake performance.
The spark plugs should be changed every 37,000 miles, as they can erode and cause misfires.
However, crucially, it is recommended to have an annual inspection to keep an eye out for potential wear and tear items. This includes inspecting the air filter, suspension system components, steering components, brake pads and rotors, differential fluid, coolant, and tires.
Brakes, Rotors, Pads, Fluid
The BMW is a motorsports inspired sports car that need powerful brakes to help it perform on and off the track. It is no wonder then, that it therefore requires some pretty substantial brakes. The front brake discs are 360 mm while the rears are 350 mm in diameter. Brake wear varies from on driving conditions, and there are many factors that contribute to brake wear, and therefore brake pad and disc wear should be inspected annually at a minimum to ensure they are replaced at the end of their lifespan. As mentioned previously, the brake fluid must be changed every 2 years, regardless of mileage.
Tires, Suspension & Alignment
Tires are also wearable items that need to be checked at every service interval. Unfortunately, many owners tend to ignore their tires. As they are the only part of your vehicle that are in contact with the ground, they affect handling, acceleration, braking, and crucially, safety. Wear will vary depending on driving conditions, driving style, and whether or not the vehicle is all-wheel drive or not.
The BMW E90 M3 comes with these tire sizes:
FRONT TIRES: P245/40/R18
REAR TIRES: P265/40/R18
FRONT TIRES: P245/35/R19
REAR TIRES: P265/35/R19
GI Automotive carries a wide selection of BMW M3 tires on stock and available to order. A consultation is available to determine which tire is best for your individual driving needs.
Alignment can seriously affect both tire wear as well as the handling characteristics of a car. Therefore, it is imperative that the alignment is checked on a regular basis. The BMW E90 M3 Guide recommends checking camber, castor, and toe for tolerances within factory specification, or a custom specification if deemed necessary.
The suspension’s job is to not only keep a comfortable ride; it is also to provide optimal handling characteristics. Properly functioning suspension will keep alignment within specification in a straight line as well as in the corners. Moreover, this keeps the tires from wearing unevenly. At each service interval, it is recommended to check the suspension components for any squeaks, rattles, leakage, or play.