Saturday, June 6, 2015

10k: Axis Combo: 2000 BMW 323CI w/2JZ-GE Power

The E46 generation BMW 3-series is still considered a high water mark for the 3-series in terms of design, chassis, and drive-ability.  Around here you'll see us lavishing praise on the brutally fast (and honestly cheap) E46 M3, but the lesser 323/325/330 offerings offer a decent driving experience for a basic buy in.  Find this 2000 BMW 323CI w/2JZ Power here on eBay currently bidding for $9,000 with a few hours to go.

The seller has added an M3 style front splitter, and side vents, but has the narrow hips of the standard 3-series instead of the widebody setup of the M version. 

This isn't a 2JZ-GTE -- the legendary Mk IV Supra Turbo engine that is known for being boosted to 1,000 hp on stock internals, but it is the almost as capable 2JZ-GE -- easily identified by its mechanical distributor setup poking out of the side of the head.  The seller has added a cantaloupe sized aftermarket turbocharger and claims 415 horsepower and 400 ft-lbs of torque to the pavement.  It will be fast and furious.

The shifter is attached to a W58 5-speed manual gearbox, probably from the same donor Toyota Lexus SC300 or IS300 where the engine was found.

See a better 2JZ swap?


  1. That's an extremely odd choice of swaps. In BMW related news....

    BCW…the world went all pear-shaped when Sterling failed in the Colonies; repair some of the damage by driving this 2000 Rover 75 2.5 V6. Developed during BMW ownership and when they couldn’t figure out how to overcharge for wiper blades, the company was sold to Ford who unloaded it to Indian conglomerate Tata. Though not featured on this car, some of the options included a manual transmission, an estate and a Ford V8 with 255 hp and 300 foot-pounds of torque (2003-2005).


    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. Let me clean up and combine my response...

      Rover (the car side vs Land Rover/Range Rover) had whored itself out to Honda through the '80s (remember the Sterling? Most '80s and '90s Rovers were basically regrilled Hondas) but eventually decided that marrying BMW was a better deal.

      Like the Daimler 'marriage' to Chrysler someone forgot the STD test; the sores bloomed, the divorce lawyers called, and that was that. The Rover car operation was sold off to some Chinese outfit before Tata entered the picture.

      But first came some offspring, the Rover 75 was done in parallel with (or as a derivative of) the the E39 BMW and reputedly shares some platform bits despite (mostly) being FWD.

      A few years down the road, once BMW had kicked them out of bed, they decided that FWD thing wasn't getting them expensive dates. That 255HP version you alluded to (the MG ZT 260) was RWD, with a whole pile of new underbits courtesy of Prodrive.

      I have no clue whatsoever whether they went out and bought up a bunch of BMW E39 subframes to do it.

    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    5. Here is, for those interested in automotive archaeology, an abbreviated (ending in 2003, so a couple years after MG-Rover was sold off to Brit private equity and a couple years before it was shut down and sold to the Chinese) history of the company's progressive efforts at decontenting the 75 and MG ZT.

      Project Drive

      None of this is unusual in the industry, if you look at (for instance) the history of the Taurus Ford started ripping crap out of it almost from the day it was released in '86. The trunk carpet got thinner, the '90 interior was cheaper to make, in '92 they ditched the vented rear discs for solid rotors, etc. etc etc. After the '96 launch of the big-new-expensive-bubbly one failed, they started ripping stuff out of that one too, discontinuing rear disc brakes, removing primer and sound deadening from the doors, etc.

    6. frankly, from a quick google search for ZT-T 260s for sale, I'm thinking it's a future collector car.

      Though not here in the United States of NHTSA.

    7. mrkwong is - [img][/img]

  2. What the H.E. double hockey stick?!? Now Blogger isn't accepting http:? Son of a beeotch. Fer frog's sake...the car can be found at

  3. @K2MC - maybe you guessed one of the sushi dishes incorrectly.

    1. Highly probable! I love me some sushi, that's for sure. What's strange is the coding is being converted to a DT page. Let's try again...

      Here's the URL

      And here I've linked it as I've always linked it, before time began.

    2. Worked. Must've done sumthin' stoopid. Dagnabit.


    3. BTW, thanks for the comment, B. Other than yours, if the lack of response to the cars I picked for BCM (what are yours, DTers?) is any indication, it's no wonder the British car industry died miserably. Even "enthusiasts" aren't interested, apparently! It's a real crime because we owe so much to them. We wouldn't have the sports cars and luxury vehicles that we have today, that's for sure. Their influence was amazing and cannot be underestimated. And let's not even get started on economy cars created there (for shame, MINI owners).

      Why I oughta, indeed! Honor the past, especially when it's this important.

  4. Love it. Finally, a german car thats easy to work on. Put away your torx and triple square sets, its just topping off the oil from here on out.

  5. E46. Cool.

    2JZ-GE - Cool enough. You could probably even make it smoggable in California in normally-aspirated form.

    W58 transmission? Very nice box, only five gears though.

    Aftermarket turbo with big open-element air filter? Not in California. And that 415HP might be a bit much for that W58.


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