Mod Bugs // Iwan’s E90 3 Series on BBS
Have you ever felt like things are going way out of control between you and your ride? Running on your 10th set of wheels? Repainted your car for the third time? Installed the bigger turbo you’ve never thought you’ll need? Spent more time going to the workshop than going out with your girlfriend? You, then, might have been bitten by the mod bug. Installing new parts on a regular basis despite having never planned to do so. The urge to mod. Chasing the rabbit down to the rabbit hole. And, unfortunately, I don’t have the solution for you. No, not today. What I have today is another patient found infected by the mod bug. A mod accidentally started from a simple traffic collision, down to having the 8th set of wheels and a mod list comparable to a contest car. Meet Iwan and his journeyful E90 325i.
As Iwan seemed to be very very passionate towards the car, I’ll just let him tell the story himself. (He currently co-owns Absolute Rich Tuning, a mod shop that represents KW Suspensions in Indonesia.)
“This car is one of the reasons me and Alvin started Absolute Rich Tuning workshop. I knew Alvin from the “E46fanatics Jakarta” meet, back in 2004. I regularly attended several of those meets, driving my E46 3 Series. But then not too long after, I had to leave Jakarta, and went for a masters degree in the US. Fast forward to 2008, I returned to Jakarta for good and was then looking for a nice E60 5 Series for my daily drives. Some quick searches later though, I bumped into an interesting E90 325i, posted for sale at Alvin’s social media, which I ended up buying. After the purchase, I got further in talks with Alvin and decided to form Absolute Rich Tuning workshop together, a shop dedicated to a wide range of modification services.
Like all those mod bug stories you might’ve heard, it all began with a sincere plan to keep the car stock/standard throughout the ownership. I planned nothing more than functional modifications like bi-xenon retrofit and nicer red rearlights installation. And also perhaps a nice little spoiler for the trunk some time later. But then disaster struck. A motorbike crashed into the car and tore the front bumper. The mod bug bit. Instead of replacing it with another stock bumper, I decided to install the M-Sport retrofit kit. From that moment, along came the marching line of modification parts afterwards.
Mods and mods and mods kept on coming through my head and being installed. KW Coilover V3 was first, as ART (Absolute Rich Tuning) has been appointed as KW Indonesian partner at that time. A set of wheels came not too long after. First set was Volk Racing Progressiv ME 19″, and what followed after was, well, a pretty long list: Silver Advan RS 19″, Gunmetal Advan RS 18″, BBS LM DBK-P 19″, Black Volk Racing G25 19″, Red Volk Racing G2 18″, Red Volk Racing G12 19″, and now this BBS LM-R 20″ featured today.
Departing from wheels and suspensions, the mod bug lured me towards the exteriors. With the introduction of the E90 LCI, I decided to freshen up the 325i’s front fascia, through the installation of E90 LCI hood, BMW Performance Kidney Grill and E90 LCI M-Sport front bumper. Chrome window trims were also replaced with hi-gloss black shadowline trim for a sportier look. 3D Design rear spoiler soon followed. And Eisenmann quad exhaust system was also installed together with the 3D Design carbon fiber diffuser. Satisfied by the exotic-sounding Eisenmann exhaust, I became even more curious as to whether the exhaust tone can still be improved; long story short, IPE exhaust manifold was installed soon after.
From street-driven to being a track-warrior. As it was becoming more frequent for me to race on tracks together with KW customers and friends, the need for improved braking power was evident. AP Racing 365mm 6 piston front & 355mm 4 piston rear with curve slotted rotors were then installed, alongside with OEM 335i rear axle parts, BBS wheel studs and titanium lug nuts to strengthen up the footworks.
Also due to the frequent track races, the mod bug bit even deeper: performance upgrades were very very necessary. My first solution was to install the 330i intake manifold, allowing more air to enter the combustion chambers. BMW Performance intake later followed, alongside with matching BMW Performance CF Strut Bar. Complimenting all those upgrades was the installation of Viezu software tuning, which turned all those parts into real horsepower figures.
BMW Performance parts were also added to the interior, with the most functional being the steering wheel with race display. Having the ability to record lap times & quarter miles, while monitoring oil & water temp and G-force through the same display, were the nifty little features that satisfied the Stig within me.
KW DDC ECU was installed just in time for GENESIS. Such setup allows me to choose the damping modes: comfort, sport, or sport+ through the push of a button located inside the middle console compartment. The optional Wi-Fi receiver even allows suspension adjustments via iOS devices such as iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. With the KW DDC App, I can set the front and rear dampers individually from 0%-100%, all with simple sliders on the iOS device. I can also save my favorite settings and send them over to friends via e-mail.
After GENESIS, the car went through a little makeover. BMW Performance carbon fiber splitters and carbon fiber M3 mirror covers were added to complement the carbon fiber diffuser. BMW Performance sideskirts were also installed. Finishing it all was a whole body repaint to San Marino Blue. A color codes hasn’t been seen too often on the E90 platform.
What’s next? The mod bug is luring me towards more interior parts (BMW performance seats, black interior, 3D design pedals etc). But the new-car bug is also starting to bite. So? Perhaps only time will tell.” – Iwan
BBS LM-R DSK-P 20″x8.5-9.5
KW Coilover DDC ECU with optional Wi-Fi receiver for setting via iOS
AP Racing 365mm 6 piston front & 355mm 4 piston rear
335i rear axle parts (drive shaft, knuckle, bearing, sensors, handbrake)
BBS Studs + Titanium lug nuts
San Marino Blue paint job
E90 LCI engine hood
E90 LCI M-Sport Bodykit
BMW Performance black kidney grill
BMW Performance sideskirts
BMW Performance carbon fiber splitters
M3 mirrors with BMW Performance carbon fiber covers
3D design rear spoiler
3D design carbon fiber diffuser for quad exhaust
Bi-xenon headlamp retrofit
Blackline tail lights
Welcome lights retrofit
High gloss shadowline trim
BMW Performance Intake
BMW Performance CF Strut bar
N52B30 intake manifold
IPE exhaust manifold
Eisenmann Race Exhaust full system with quad tips
Viezu performance tuning
BMW Performance Steering wheel with Race Display
BMW Performance shift knob, boot & handbrake
TOP 1 Synthetic Oil (certified by BMW)
Automotive Photographer based in Jakarta and Singapore.