BMW Diagnostics

Today’s common diagnostic pitfalls are a challenging bunch of multiple issues at hand, let me explain.

Diesel Particulate Filter

For instance an older gentleman with late model BMW 328 diesel having a problematic DPF at a very early stage. DPF stands for Diesel Particulate Filter. Diesel particulate filters are devices that capture diesel particulates from the exhaust gas of the diesel engine to prevent their release to the air.

Clogged DPF Filter

His BMW’s odometer reads only 98 000 kms. Naturally to have a clogged DPF this early in a  diesel BMW sends off a ringer for me. The gentleman has been at the BMW dealer to find a solution, he even contacted the customer care at BMW Canada for no results, other than being told his car is out of warranty.

2016’s 328 Diesel BMW

Unfortunately the DPF is only covered for a relatively short time in Canada, even though in the USA they are covered for 10 years or 120 000 miles, we are talking about a 2016’s 328 diesel BMW vehicle. The first thing that occurred to me was that this should not happen unless this vehicle was not driven as intended, interestingly nobody ever asked that question yet. I asked the client about his driving habits, and he said he drives only locally a few kilometers each trip. It’s worth pointing out this is a crucial problem due to no self clean will be run by the engine management computer to burn out the DPF.  The DPF cleaning wanted to start probably many times, except it gets shut down every time due to short distance driving.

This whole problem could be prevented if the client was informed at the time of purchase about his diesel emission maintenance requirements, this is very, very unfortunate.  The lack of introduction of the special needs of the system can’t be understated as it can lead to early DPF failure.

The Consequences to Use Wrong Motor Oil in a Diesel  BMW

Furthermore the client gets his oil changes elsewhere and he’s not aware of the special diesel specific motor oil requirement either for DPF equipped vehicles.

Having the wrong oil a LL01 or any other BMW specific like an LL17+FE oil put in could have a detrimental effect on the DPF by zinc poisoning of the particulate filter.

Only LL04 or equivalent like MB 229.51 oil must be used to prevent DPF poisoning. Unfortunately clients should be asking questions instead of just taking their chances.

Diesel BMW’ Special Needs and Requirements

Fortunately we managed to flush the clogged DPF with the print out of before and after pressure readings. I have explained to the client all the special needs and requirements he has to be aware of from here on going forward.</

Theoretically this is not my job and not my responsibility, except it would be the same problem recurring sooner than later no matter what, if he does not change his driving routine.  This can’t be emphasized enough.

Any questions, how may we help? Call us with your question.
Telephone: 905.795.0419

Related:

Changes to Modern Car Engines. Motor Oils Standard

Changes to Modern Car Engines. Motor Oils Standard

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Lowering Springs For BMW M3

2022 BMW M3 Competition. It is almost brand new, only has 2 thousand kilometers in it.

It have received new Lowering Springs and some other fashionable add ons. When good is not good enough you can make it different for your liking, figures. Or ask as and we will make it better then good.

By the way, you should know it: Lowering Springs are the most cost effective way to improve your BMW’s handling. Lowering Springs lower the center of gravity of your vehicle, reduce body roll. Lowering springs makes possible to drive your BMW in more aggressive manner.

There are several Lowering Springs kit are on the today markets for your BMW. Ask us for details.

For my personal taste, those gigantic nostrils look weird. We should make some change on that too. What do you think? Let us know.

2022 BMW M3 Competition Received  NEW Lowering Springs

Work on 2022 BMW M3

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PERFORMANCE ENHANCEMENT
Noelle Performance tuning for the BMW.

The New 2023 BMW M4 CSL

The question is, what does BMW do or stands for in today’s world? In short many – many things, please let me explain.

Bayerische Motoren Werke (BMW) has some well known innovations like mold injected carbon fiber polymer which had its first commercial use in the BMW E46, BMW M3 CSL . The CSL (Competition Sport Light weight) is only used twice in the brands history.

2023 BMW M4 CSL

The third one has been just announced which is going to be the 2023 BMW M4 CSL, production starts on 07/2022. The very first one was the 1972 homologation special BMW 3.0 CSL which later became the “batmobile”.


The New 2023 M4 CSL

The second iteration BMW M3 CSL was introduced in 2003, the BMW E46 with a carbon fiber roof in the first time in a production vehicle. The technology to produce carbon fiber of anything is not new albeit the polymer reinforced carbon fiber is a BMW invention entirely.

Regular or conventional carbon fiber has to be made from scratch of carbon fiber sheets which could be plain or pre preg. Either way it has to be placed or hand laid into a mold. After has to be soaked in epoxy resin, then this has to be repeated multiple times, until the layers reach a desired thickness within the mold.

Thereafter the entire soaked mold has to be covered in a special sheet of absorbent material, which has to soak up the excess resin to make the component lighter. Then the entire mold has to be covered in a vacuum bag and sealed entirely while there are sealed ports are attached to the bag so there is a vacuum ( negative air pressure) can be applied.

The negative pressure is a must, in order to extract any air bubbles from the carbon fiber epoxy resin.  Additionally the entire process has to be performed while the component is baked over night in a autoclave (a giant oven) which will cure the epoxy resin over time of 6hours or more.  BMW figured this process is way too expensive and time consuming, therefore they came up with a clever way to make the desired components in 20 minutes or less.

The BMW’s Way of Making Carbon Fiber Roof Takes 20 Minutes

The BMW’s way of making the carbon fiber roof has been, make 2 molds one positive and one negative mold. Layer up (5 layers for the roof in question) the carbon fiber sheets in different direction.  Press the carbon fiber sheet between the molds and then pre heat the molds and finally inject a polymer resin to solidify the the carbon fiber cloth.

The entire process takes about 20 minutes or less instead of days with conventional hand laid epoxy resin. The first carbon fiber roof was installed on the famous limited edition 2003 M3 CSL to bring down the center of gravity of the vehicle.

Which Brings Us Back To The  2023 BMW M4 CSL

This process opened a new era in fast and reasonably priced carbon fiber components. Therefore BMW could make the BMW i3 and the BMW i8 cars mostly constructed from the same material on a normal production line. Which brings us back to the  2023 BMW M4 CSL ( limited to one thousand piece World wide) which has multiple panels made from the same lightweight but strong (5 times as strong as steel) carbon fiber.  For instance, the roof the hood and the trunk all made of the same material to lower the center of gravity. This all played a role to earn the L  (Leicht in German = lightweight in English) designation by removing a hundred kilogram of weight from the vehicle.

Naturally even the standard seats are made of carbon fiber as well .

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2023 BMW M4 CSL

The new 2023 BMW M4 CSL

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How to Prepare Your Car for Extreme Cold

What do you do when your kid decides to move the arctic circle to pursue his passion? Well, if you are like me, you build a car suitable for the conditions. Meaning extreme cold extreme environment and everything else in the extremes regarding the weather so to say.

Suitable Car To The Arctic Circle

We searched first for a suitable car to modify and build. He wanted to get an older Subaru Forester or Outback.  Finally we found a  decent Outback, with a standard transmission and the modifications began.

Step one: Applied heavy undercoating everywhere to lock out moisture as these cars are prone to rust. We added a charge port to the front for the block heater, a battery warmer and additionally a extreme cold weather approved CTEK battery tender.

Lightweight Synthetic Transmission Fluid

Then we replaced all the fluids with lightweight synthetic gear, transmission fluid, synthetic power steering fluid, new spark plugs and all the filters. Also replaced the serpentine belt, the engine coolant adjusted to -50 C.

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Synthetic Motor Oil

Performed an oil change on the engine too, with lightweight 0/20 w synthetic motor oil. New wipers approved for cold weather by Bosch. Then we cut the battery tray and squeezed in the largest possible battery in there. The battery replaced a 560 CCA to an 850 CCA AGM battery with a blanket battery warmer to prevent a no start condition in -40 Celsius or below.

Yokohama Winter Tires

Replaced all the light bulbs with Sylvania LED lights for maximum lumens at nighttime driving. Installed a set of  Yokohama ig52 winter tires to cope with snow and icy road conditions. Checked serviced the brakes with a brake fluid flush to prevent brake fluid icing.

He is a pilot and stationed in Pickle Lake Ontario, which is literally the farthest place you can drive to North in Ontario on all season roads. The distance from Techmax Auto Repair Inc. is 2300 kilometers, to the northwest.

The airport website states it:  Pickle Lake is “WHERE ALL ROADS BEGIN”.

He had to make this move to accumulate the required hours of flight time required by most airlines or the like.

Unusual times require an unusual approach. I think his ride will perform exceptionally well in the coming years in the arctic circle.

Any questions, how may we help? Contact us for more at:
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Related:

Battery service.

When is a brake fluid flush recommended?

Oil, lube and filter service for your European Import Cars.

 

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BMW Suspension Repair

We rely on our cars to take us to places, therefore you ride on your suspension anywhere you want to go. Fixing worn damaged or corroded suspension components is not an easy feat. You need knowledge and experience, paired with the right tool for the right job.

European Car’s Suspensions Are Multi Link Systems

Most European car’s suspensions are multi link systems, either McPherson or wishbone at the front and 5 link per axle at the rear. The arms are joined either by a bushing at both ends or by ball joint.

To make matters worst, unfortunately road salt and potholes cause excessive and premature component wear over time. You need to be aware of the salt and the potholes on the road doesn’t help.

Wheel Bearing Replacement on A BMW 328xi

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BMW rusted axle nutBMW 328xi’s Rusted Axle Nut

On the photo at left is a BMW 328xi’s rusted axle nut.  To change the wheel bearing, the nut need to be removed.  Add some creativity and problem solving and whoala problem solved. This rusted axle nut had to be cut at the top and at the bottom and with the help of  special hydraulic press, the bearing replacement can be done easier.

We do plenty of shock absorbers, wheel bearings and bushings replacement, due to winter damages and or worn components.

BMW X1 repair in MississaugaBMW X1 Tension Arm Bushing

The bushings made from rubber and they are designed to keep the suspension components tightly bound together to control movement and stabilize the vehicle. When the bushings become worn, there is more room for the parts to move around, which can create rattling or shaking noises.

This particular bushing is an essential load bearing component in all BMW cars, therefore it’s imperative to have it replaced occasionally. We provide a free visual inspection at every oil change at your convenience.

BMW Tension Arm Bushings

The first two pictures at above you can see damaged, worn BMW bushings. On the third picture the old and the new improved version of the same tension arm bushing. There has been additional reinforcement added to the center load bearing section, to make them firmer and longer lasting.

Did you know all of this bushing are hydraulic fluid filled to dampen road vibrations? Proper ride control, suspension system is essential to keep any vehicle under safe control in motion.

Most excessive bushing wear needs a trained personnel to see and recognize the signs of a worn sloppy component. Decades of experience comes into play pointing out the issue at hand.

To resolve or fix European Cars properly we use plenty of specialized equipment like a hand held hydraulic press mentioned at above, to remove and install bushings, hubs and wheel bearings.

BMW repair- wheel bearing replacementBMW Wheel Bearing Replacement

You can see some one of our hand held hydraulic press in action on the picture at left. This tool make our job a breeze, instead of a struggle.

Therefore the right tool for the right job is imperative.

Any questions how may we help?
Contact us for more at: (1) 905.795.0419

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BMW Alignment

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Lithium Ion Battery in Today’s Luxury Automobiles

Should have a title like beware of the LiFePO and lithium ion battery in your late model luxury automobile!

LiFePO Lithium Ion Battery.

Your newer modern high end luxury car has a weak point, called the lithium ion battery. Not in your electric car or not in your hybrid car only, in your conventional gas powered luxury automobile.

In this case, the luxury car is a Lamborghini Urus 2018, which is exactly the same car as the Porsche Cayenne GTS.  This type of battery
is also in the new BMW as well.

Most people are not aware the fact their late model BMW, Porsche and other luxury  cars equipped with a very expensive lithium ion battery.

Yes it’s lighter, yes it’s more powerful,  yes it’s very – very expensive and inconvenient when it doesn’t work anymore.

Please let me explain: The fancy high tech battery has a thermal overload protection build in which is permanently sealed off to anyone. So if thing go wrong you will be on the hook for thousands of dollars in a hurry. No, you can’t convert it to traditional lead acid or AGM battery.

We just had a very expensive encounter with a late model Lamborghini Urus. It had the fancy LiFePO battery and  wouldn’t start due to a dead LiFePO  battery. The exact translation would be lithium ion sulfate battery. It retails at $5800.00 the battery that is only. Yes you red it right, it cost five thousand eight hundred Canadian dollar.

How this “marvel” of engineering does work and how could go bad in a 4 year old vehicle?

The vehicle had over one hundred thousand kilometers, so it was way out of warranty. This fancy batteries will “brick” themselves. Say install or make it part of the cable to arrest any voltage spikes prior to the battery if you so worried about over-voltage. Therefore the internal relay can be sealed internally and  never need to be triggered unless it is charged or treated incorrectly outside of the vehicle by untrained personnel, or by the vehicle owner perhaps.

LiFePO Batteries Has An Internal Computer Built In

This batteries has an internal computer built in. It reports back to the vehicle energy management system. Therefore you can’t convert your vehicle to a conventional system, as it will not except anything else but a straight new replacement component.

LiFePO Lithium Ion Battery.

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The emergency relay can disconnect in 50 millisecond. If the battery voltage goes bellow 10 volt the system will disconnect and if you get lucky you may be able to resurrect it, but may require 20 hours of charging with a specific Li battery charger made by CTEK.

I’m not sure what is the main reason to go to extent of a poorly designed fancy battery like this, other than make sure the consumer will part with a bundle of money and the average garage will not be able help you whatsoever.

My question is: Why the manufacturer would not put a outboard voltage regulator before the battery pack? Say make it part of the cable assembly to arrest any voltage spikes coming at it prior so the fancy battery. The internal relay will only need to go into emergency disconnect if both regulators fail. The one in the alternator and one in line there after. This would just make proper sense.

This Technology Only Exist in High End Luxury Cars of Yet

This technology only exist in high end luxury cars,  as  Lamborghini, Porsche and some BMW of yet. Be assured, it will trickle down further on the “food chain” later.

Suffice to say, if you plucked down all that money to buy a new LiFePO battery, you potentially could buy a decent used car for it. Once you
buy a new LiFePO battery you will need to get the battery registered and programmed with the latest genuine software or it will not work at all.

BMW – Porsche – Mercedes Electrical System Testing

Additionally you better make sure your alternator is up to spec. Preferably with an oscilloscope to ensure your brand new pricey Li battery doesn’t get bricked again.

For your convenience we decided to do some research on the subject and even though it’s not recommended we took a dive into the said LiFePO battery pack to see what makes it work or not .

Any questions, how may we help? Call us with your question.
Telephone: 905.795.0419

Related:

Hybrid BMW Repair

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COVID Effects on Internal Combustion Engines

The other victims of Covid less often recognized, are the damaged Internal Combustion Engines (ICE) engines.

Driving Ultra short Distances Effects Your Car’s Engine

Since people are more sedentary, staying home and or driving ultra short distances their car’s engines take a massive beating by water dilution. Today’s ICE engines are a refinement of an extraordinary effort to make them more efficient, therefore the piston rings are a shadow of their former selves literally.

Suffice to say the same principle applies to the entire internal architecture of the engine, therefore you need less energy to keep things in motion, hence their higher efficiency in generally speaking.

Unfortunately there are some negative aspects to this fine engineering marvel. The thin piston rings combined with the help of turbocharging, adds additional pressure to the combustion chamber, therefore the blow by volume is way more intensive than on a normally aspirated engine.

German Manufacturers Run Their Crankcase Ventilation System Under Negative Pressure

To make matters worse, most European (read German) manufacturers run their crankcase ventilation system under negative pressure to reduce pumping losses, to increase the efficiency even further. Unfortunately when you only drive ultra short distances the condensation from the blow by will accumulate inside the crankcase and since the skinny low tension rings can’t do much about it will reach a terminal point where water will get sucked up upon cold start and or the cappuccino alike frothy oil and water mix will destroy the fragile internal components.

German drivers use their car only if it is driven at a longer distance.

From my humble experience, there are no German drivers who will start their monster autobahn burner engine, if they could afford one per say as the fuel is so expensive at $2.50+ a liter. They use their car only if it is driven at a longer distance. Therefore the engine goes through a proper heat cycle, allowing the pistons to expand, the oil to get hot and allow the condensed water to be boiled off in the process.

It’s actually a simple chemistry where O2 burned with HC will form H2O in the process which by itself is harmless to the combustion process. Unfortunately if the same engine is driven ultra short distances the water accumulation will have detrimental, often fatal consequences to the engines delicate internal components.

Here are a few examples of a couple of COVID related BMW engine failures by the help of condensed water ingestion.

Picture #1: BMW M3 S65 piston rings with miniature oil scraper ring holes. How long do you think it takes to get them clogged up by infrequent oil changes?

Picture #2:  Old 944 Turbo sizable piston rings.

Picture #3 #4: The piston ring tension difference between a N55 BMW and an S65 BMW engines. The later has way more tension due to performance oriented application versus low tension N55 piston rings which ones were designed for high efficiency by low tensions naturally making things worst due to turbocharging.

 Visit our Facebook for more and bigger imagesDamaged BMW pistons with piston rings

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Telephone: 905.795.0419

Related:

BMW N20 Engine Repair

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German Combustion Engines

The internal combustion engines of German descent are designed differently.

Every country designs their vehicles for their own population or driving characteristics. Let me explain please.

The Germans are very good drivers for multiple reasons.

Reason #1: Driving in Germany is a privilege not a right. To get the privilege you have to get your driver license after finishing a grueling graduated licensing program, it’s a skill you build over years, not in a few hours like in here. Since they are highly educated about driving they’re allowed to drive fast on the autobahn naturally.

The direct relation to fast driving German cars has great brakes, you must have great brakes to bring a vehicle to a stop when you’re doing 200 plus kph. The chassis has to be made stiff and strong.

Reason #2; A loose chassis will kind of wadle at high speed no matter what. Additionally in case you crash at high speed you will have a much better chance to survive the crash, dead people do not buy cars .

The third asset is that if you drive fast especially in a standard transmission equipped car you’re more connected to the machine than an automatic transmission equipped vehicle. The additional benefit is their engines are built to survive the high speed driving therefore they’re built for the purpose.

German Cars’ Drive Ability Issues in North America

When these German Import Cars are shipped over to North America they develop multiple drive ability issues due to our vastly different driving habits. For instance in a manual gearbox equipped vehicle you the driver pick the shift points, so it’s up to you when you pick the next gear. On an automatic transmission equipped vehicle the computer decides to select the next gear.

Cars in North America are forced by the government regulatory agencies like EPA and CAFE standards will prevail to choose the most economical gear possible. Therefore selecting the highest gear at the lowest speed to have the best average fuel economy.

German cars are modified to north American driving standards with automatic transmission.

When you drive those cars as they are modified to North American standards inadvertently, you will end up with multiple engine issues.

Dirty oil in a engineGerman Engine  with dirty cappuccino look like motor oil inside.  Click on the thumbnail to view bigger image.

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We see a lot of engine issues due to ultra short distance driving. It causes blow by condense water build up in the oil sump, diluting the motor oil with water and fuel. Therefore the cappuccino-like slur will cause premature engine wear, especially at the bottom end of the engine and the cylinder head.

The only cure is to drive your German car as originally intended, spirited if possible, mostly in sport mode if automatic and at least 30 to 40 minutes after starting to elevate the oil temperature. So the engine gets self clean and will perform well for many years to come.

Good Quality 100% Synthetic German Motor Oils

Plus good quality motor oil, preferable 100% synthetic, timely oil changes and good quality oil filter help to extend the lifespan of any German car‘s engine.

Any questions, how may we help? Call us with your question.
Telephone: 905.795.0419

Related:

Changes to Modern Car Engines. Motor Oils Standard

Synthetic Motor Oil

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Mercedes Benz S450 4matic Differential Repair

Well maintained Mercedes Benz S450 4matic destroyed it’s own differential. The silly lifetime fill of any gearbox, differential and transfer cases has its consequences.

Please let me explain. You can see in the photo down below, a completely destroyed front differential on a well maintained Mercedes Benz S450 4matic. The differential literally locked up and cracked the differential assembly in 3 places.

Mercedes Benz Differential Repair

Mercedes Benz S450 4matic Differential

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According to the client while driving the front wheels locked up momentarily. I assume that was the point when the case cracked from the gears locked up and the vehicle’s momentum made it get to that point.  This vehicle destroyed it’s own differential because of a minor axle seal leak,  which if caught in time could be resolved with some effort.

Please keep one thing in mind: The front differential is a sealed unit with a lifetime fill supposedly.  This would be just fine until all the gear oil leaked out and the gears ate themselves. Unfortunately this differential is so tucked away, the manufacturer deleted the fill and drain plug entirely. This could be still overcome by removing one axle shaft and sucking the oil out and refilling it from the same way, just saying.  We find a lot of similar issues with transfer cases as well.

Late model BMW

For instance, late model BMW has no drain hole for the transfer case assembly nor the differentials. Therefore it takes some extra effort to suck the old tired fluid out and refill them the same way, but there is a will there’s a way.

Let’s face it, there is no fluid and no lubricant meant to last forever. Do yourself a favor and get your vehicle serviced every one hundred thousand  kilometers at least, so it can last for decades without developing a lack of lubrication related problems.

Remember, we are European Import Car Specialist at Techmax Auto Inc. We fix BMW, Porsche, Mercedes, Mini,  and have the expertise to fix yours too.

Any questions, how may we help? Call us with your question.
Telephone: 905.795.0419

Related:

BMW 535 GT Repair | BMW 535 GT Maintenance

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BMW N20 Engine Repair

2013 BMW X3 with the popular, but troublesome BMW N20 engine.

Well maintained BMW X3 with BMW N20 Engine

Received this well maintained BMW X3 with a no start condition.  We were told, it was diagnosed at a Toronto dealership as “may” need a timing chain, and they opted to replace the timing chain tensioner assembly.

We tried to start it after being towed in, we did not succeed, the  car did not start. Got the owner permission to remove the valve cover, and oh boy the poor thing lost 80% of it’s timing chain guide. Therefore the timing chain jumped timing naturally, the computer was seeing the timing way out of specified position, and did not allow the engine to fire up. It cranked but did not start.

BMW N20 Engine Timing Chain Failure

Unfortunately we had to confirm a total timing chain failure. Honestly I’m not surprised for one moment as the car odometer had 229860 kms  in it, it’s lasted much longer than average.

Timing Chain Replacement on BMW’s N20 Engine 

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BMW’s N20 Engine Common Problem

When all said and done, she run like a charm albeit had a low boost fault. Its BMW’s N20 engine common problem. After some further testing we found a turbocharger error.  The turbocharger wastegate was severely worn out.

The vehicle owner wanted this car to drive for a few more years, so we got a good quality used turbocharger to keep the costs down.

BMW N20 Engine’s Turbo Charger Replacement

We replaced the turbocharger at the same time updated the pressure feed line with the newer revised version, to ensure proper operation and turbo longevity.

We reset the adaptations and than road tested it multiple times. She is back in business and runs really well, “purring like a kitten”.

Any questions, how may we help? Call us with your question.
Telephone: 905.795.0419

Related:

The Famous N20 Engine Timing Chain Issue

BMW N20 engine failure

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