the hellrot, e34 with passion


Man... has it been almost 7 years ago now, since I got my first car, my first BMW? And what a car it was. I learnt a lot, I met a lot of people and most importantly it never let me down. Not once. Wait it DID! That stupid EWS system...

The car started its life as a bone stock HE53 (the E34 nerds know what that means), for the rest of the world that is a 540i with a 6 speed. 4.0 for a M60B40 V8 with the infamous Nikasil block, which never bothered me. Not too shabby for a first car, right. I was 21 and I got me a bright red ride. The world was mine.

This enabled me to make a very strong connection with BMW enthusiast in Bulgaria, as well.


I still remember the day I took the commuter train to Weymouth, MA to go check the car out. The stupid thing broke down half way. For all the New England-ers, who have used the MBTA services, this comes to no surprise. I didn't need a car at all. I lived on the South Shore at the time, in Quincy, and I took the T to downtown to go to school. But the urge the get my hands on a BMW was way bigger than any common sense, and man did I make the right choice!

Bone stock! Minus the stupid Italian manufactured MiM rims and the single tip exhaust from Autozone... Being on a limited budget and ramen noodles, this car didn't see much modification during my first year of ownership. In the spring of 2010, I bought a set of Style 32s, that were on an E28 previous (didn't even know what that looked liked). Most of the people around me had E30s, E34s and E39s. These wheels had a pretty terrible finish, so it they were going to get fixed. Properly.

August 2010 - I brought a set of smileys and some euro bumper trim from Bulgaria. Yeah you guessed it right, those were cheap! Super cheap. I made a regular thing out of this, always making sure that I have enough space in my suitcase for BMW parts.. and I have brought stuff back home too. This enabled me to make a very strong connection with BMW enthusiast in Bulgaria, as well. Oh and I received my freshly flat-black powder-coated Style 32s, as well.

Next came the urge for a body kit. It was going to be done right! A friend of mine found a lead on brand new M-Sport bumpers. This is exactly what I wanted. In my mind the wide grill works much better with this bumper, than the M5 bumpers. But I had to have a rear one as well. It is still the Fall of 2010. I started stashing my parts, but I still had to paint the bumpers. I managed to find the N/A rear bumper while I was in Bulgaria. There was an alpine white E34 M5 parted out in Connecticut. I got the deal settled, and now I just had to make it back to the US, drive through a snow storm, part out an M5 and get me a bumper. Little that I know at the time, that this will turn into a pretty interesting story. I got my parts and bunch of other stuff from that M5. Sold what I didn't need and ended up with a free bumper and even covered my gas. Overall a score trip in my book.

Back to the car. March 2011

Now the car is starting to shape up. And sound pretty good! Magnaflow 14816.

June 1st, 2011. Last day in Quincy. The car was washed and ready for a road trip to Ithaca, NY - graduate school. I moved my household in one trip. Yeah I had things stuff up everywhere. I could barely see the mirrors...

I know what you are thinking. This car needs a drop. New driveway, new garage, new school - And so it happened in August 2011 - bilstein sport and vogtlands. First real big project (for me). That is when I met my buddies Jay, Chris and Karl.... that needs a whole another article by itself.

To be continued... #DAILYVINTAGERIDES_

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Comments (2)

  • Stay tuned for part DEUX.

      4 years ago
  • Great story and transformation on that 540

      4 years ago