Thursday, February 6, 2020

[M3] You get what you pay for

[note: this post, like an air-cooled 911, is back-dated to when these events occurred] 

Small update here since it's dark in the evenings after work and I'm only able to do little things here and there...

Grilles: the OEM euro grilles are $100/ea, which is staggering for injection-molded plastic. I decided to try my luck with these $30 eBay grilles from Latvia. After a short eternity of shipping time I received the grilles and immediately put in an order for the BMW parts. This is what $30 gets you:

No foam gasket

Rough finish with the wrong grain and tons of flash

Wandering grille lines

Holes that aren't round

The entirely wrong appearance - shiny cheap plastic instead of matte OE finish. Not to mention that some tab and hole features were left out altogether to simplify the tooling. So, save yourself $30 (plus almost that amount in shipping) and just buy the OE parts to start with. These pieces from Latvia will do the job if you're trying to get a beater on the road, but not great for much else.

Off came the US-spec grilles. I replaced the incorrect "M" badge with the correct "M3" badge. I don't have a photo of everything on the car (again, dark) but give it some time and I'm sure you'll see it 50 times if you scroll down.

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