- Photos by Danny Korecki | @dkorecki

I fixed the worst thing about my BMW E92 M3 with a StopTech BBK

Installing a StopTech Trophy big brake kit front and rear on my daily driver E92 M3.

5d ago
37.2K

I purchased my 2012 BMW E92 M3 back in 2016. Of the bat it checked every box on performance and looks except one, the brakes. I had just came from a Gen 5 Camaro SS V8, where you get a 4 piston big brake kit at all four corners.

Best guess is the accountants had their way and costs had to be cut as the E9x series M3 had the misfortune of coming out near the 2008 Recession. What ever the reason, I had to fix both the performance and the looks.

What you get standard on the E9x M3

Even with the negative in the brake department, the E9x M3 is arguably the performance benchmark from the years of 2008 to 2013. Every coupe or sedan was put up to against it with a ruler. So it is almost embarrassing to mention that up front you get a single piston caliper with 360mm x 30m rotors and out back another single piston caliper with 350mm x 24mm rotors.

While I hate the fact that they are single piston, they have to be the single hardest working single piston calipers in the history of performance cars. They do happen to be quite useable on the street and capable of some light track duty which can be elongated by upgrading some pads and rotors, but you will forever be holding back in track situations wondering if those "little single piston calipers that could" will keep you safe and slow you down going 130+ on a tracks main straight.

Why a StopTech big brake kit?

Anyone that knows me knows that when purchasing any item no matter the price I have a personal mantra - "Buy it nice, not twice". We all have friends or acquaintances that use products then you buy because you have seen the abuse that they put on the product and the product has survived. Same goes with StopTech big brake kits - particularly the Trophy Kit.

Now for me personally, it seems like my friends, acquaintances, heck even my Instagram friends all swim in the deep end and opt straight for the big boy Trophy kit. I know the standard kits are a significant upgrade over standard caliper/rotors for many vehicles and come in a variety of colors like yellow, red, blue, black, etc. but I guess we just all want the bling of the Trophy kit.

Back on those friends, acquaintances, social media friends, I see them track and track the StopTech Trophy kit weekend after weekend. Beyond friends, they are also tested in motorsport, heck Stephan Papadakis puts a StopTech Trophy kit on his teams Toyota GR Supra Formula Drift competition car build when other teams are out there with stuff barely better than bicycle calipers. All that abuse and testing is one thing, but lets face it. They are simply the best looking aftermarket calipers you can buy.

The install

If you are interested in the exact part numbers of the products I purchased, I picked up the StopTech Trophy ST60 Front 6 Piston Big Brake Kit (355x35mm) 83.160.6D00.F1 and StopTech Trophy ST40 Rear 4 Piston Big Brake Kit (355x32mm) 83.160.0047.F1. StopTech has some great brake fluid, in fact when I first bought my M3 I flushed out the who knows what fluid that was in my lines for some StopTech Racing STR 600 Brake Fluid, but this time I opted for the sweet nectar of the Gods - Castrol SRF fluid.

The print out directions included with the brake kits are extremely detailed. You get a detailed tools needed list and the directions literally go step by step with pictures even showing you how to wash the rotors. Honestly, after some the recent install directions or lack of these are probably the best install directions I have ever had.

I had my career mechanic Father-in-Law come over to help with the install. The only guy I trust to work on my cars. So much trust I had him drill into my M3 oil pan to fix a prior owners mistakes once. I still have flash backs from that situation.

Everything boxed in the kit is easily identifiable, there is no "Is this the left or right rotor?" "the front or rear?". Pulling the calipers out of the shrink wrap they look to beautiful to get dirty, they look like some item I want sitting on my desk as a work of art.

We were able to accomplish the install in about 8 hours including bleeding the lines with new Castrol SRF, a pizza break, and normal garage bs-ing. After the install then came the break in procedure.

The directions are detailed on the break in procedure, but it is pretty much standard. Go close to 60 mph and slam on your breaks to near 10 mph. I always laugh at brake break in procedures as there is really no place to do it, but we "all get it done". After returning from my break in run, I loved the smell of worked brakes in my garage. Smelled like a paddock.

The next day, I removed each wheel and checked for leaks to be through. The install was happening because of a track day at VIR and last place I want to find out something is wrong is on the road trip down to VIR or on track ruining a track day, but we did good.

Initial opinion

Most importantly, the StopTech Trophy kit just looks so good, but regarding the feel of the brakes the placebo affect was instant but can also be calculated.

The combination of the 6 piston front calipers, 4 piston rear calipers, stainless lines, and new fluid made for a more healthy pedal feel. While I admit I was doing some oddball braking during the break in process, there is the pass through slot in my rear seats and doing full brake sent the pass through slot cushion flying down scaring me to what was moving in my back seat, but it flopped down due to the G-forces of the new braking set up. Could be due to the odd braking I was doing during break in, but either case I am already happy with the new addition.

Now I am all ready for VIR.....

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Comments (8)

  • Don't regret installing on my long travel Tacoma. It is amazing how much confidence I have in the truck now with the StopTech 6 pistons in the front, even with drums in the back. While not the Trophy kit still night and day difference. Was slightly worried about it at first spending 2k on a brake kit, mostly because this was my first time putting a kit on any vehicle I have had. Wish I did it sooner now.

      17 hours ago
  • Great article, Im thinking about adding an E92 M3 to my garage so this a great to know ahead of time. Thank you pointing out the difference for the street and track performance!

      3 days ago
    • Thanks man, glad you liked. Don't think, pull the trigger and join me! lol

        3 days ago
    • I think I absolutely will haha, just in the process of building my garage, once it's done I can start filling the spaces

        3 days ago
  • "little single piston calipers that could" - bahaha

      5 days ago
  • Always a great idea to upgrade brakes, great article 👍

      2 days ago
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