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Show Season Preparation - My BMW E30 318IS

It's been nearly six long months since I parked up my newly acquired 318IS for winter storage. St Patricks weekend had always been ear marked to resurrect the car from the shed and as I'd been stockpiling some parts, I've been looking forward to its arrival for weeks.

For whatever reason, likely during its time living in a small garage in Munich, the E30 had picked up two identical dents on the plastic bumper trim inserts. My father had treated me to a fresh pair of trims at Christmas so the first job was to get those fitted. It continually surprises me how clean this car is in hidden places.

I'd been hoarding some basic service parts that I'd picked up in various AutoDoc deals over winter. Most of this is just simple preventative maintenance that is wise to carry out on a car of this age. Even though it's 31 years old, pretty much every part is still original as the car has only clocked 62,000KM

Rubber hose is one of the big culprits of fires starting in older cars as ethenol in petrol eats them from the inside out and eventually causes hairline fractures. I took time to replace every fuel hose on the car with new, genuine BMW hose.

The brake discs and pads didn't really need changing but when they're the original parts sold on the car from new, I figured it would be best to replace them with Brembo items for my own safety!

With the majority of the service work complete, the modifying began. The relatively simple task of fitting the BC Racing coilovers I had retained from my old E30 took just one afternoon and the car was instantly transformed.

For a car guy, there are few better feelings than dropping a car onto its wheels with fresh parts fitted. Seeing my vision for this car finally become a reality was very rewarding.

The dent repair man came and took care of some minor dings in the passenger side door. As the door card was off, this allowed me to inspect the door cavities and spray a ton of waxoyl in.

At this point, we were just one week out from Dubshed and the final preparation stage of paint correction and overall detail was beginning. As it is 100% original, the paint on this car was extremely flat and covered in tiny swirl marks. I spent some time trying to cut these back and while I'm happy with the results, there is definitely improvements to be made.

I've wanted a Renown wheel ever since images of their products filtered onto my social media feeds. Everything about the brand embodies nineties motorsport inspired design so there was only ever going to be one option for the interior of this car. I paired an alcantara Monaco Motorsport wheel with their Therapy shift knob to echo the delrin knobs found in E30 M3 DTM cars.

I couldn't be happier with the interior of this car. Save for a pair of Uberkaro Recaro seats, it is pretty much exactly as I want it. Simple yet tasteful modifications building on the unbeatable E30 interior design.

On the morning of the show I took the car out for some final images. I couldn't be more stoked with how it has turned out, it's exactly as I had imagined when I set out to buy a red 318IS almost a year ago.

There is something about narrow body saloons on small wheels that just works so well and I had been lusting after this look for years. In time I might add a set of 'SE' sideskirts to build on this look but for now it is just right aesthetically.

Having this car built and sitting how I want it only makes me keen to take it on some road-trips and enjoy it at car events in Ireland and abroad. Following its shakedown at Dubshed, I hope to take it to Players Classic and Rollhard this year before a big trip to Worthersee next summer.


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