James Ibbetson has been a customer of ours for many years now and has always had a passion when it comes to his cars and when he asked us to work on his latest purchase we obviously jumped at the challenge with a bag full of enthusiasm.
A date and time scale was agreed and a fairly straight forward build was in place, however the closer the date came to the build the more the modifying bug hit James and before we knew it we had a studio full or parts and the basic build quickly become a full on project.
Prior to the car being dropped off with us James arrange fo BMW to fit the M4 brake kit all round along with the M Performance steering wheel which alone is probably the coolest thing we have ever played with.
James had also arranged for a pretty impressive audio system to be built into the car with 2 focal amps and speaker upgrades galore which really packed a punch however at first handover of the car we realised there was a very annoying vibration and hollow sound coming from the outside of the car which soon became apparent was down to the lack of sound deadening, well no sound deading to be blunt which took us down a different route to usual and ended up with ourselves stripping the boot out and sound deading the panels to fix this issue before we even moved onto the official upgrades pre arranged.
We jumped onto the carbon mirrors being eager to see how the horned upgrade looked and within 10 minutes the new additions were fitted.
We then moved onto the interior which was a full M4 interior upgrade and had been received some weeks ago, unfortunately after the first inspection we noticed mold and spores sitting on the Napa leather and had to act fast to remove these, stop and any staining and kill any bacteria which would be attaching to the leather itself. One this was deal with the factory interior was then removed from the car ready for the new interior to be placed in. Not as straight forward as we had hoped but then again nothing had been so far so why expect anything else. The rear door cars from the M4 donor car didn't have the seat belt extenders as standard which meant we had to remove these from the original seats and retro fit them into the M4 door cards, we then had issues fitting the rear bench as the M4 one was slightly larger and being a thicker bolster the rear seat belts took some messing about to actually get them through the recess. 6 hours in and the rear part of the interior was now in and sitting like a factory job and all that was needed was to get the front seats in and door cards. The door cards went in with ease and things started to come together until...... we fitted the front seats, plugged the ecu plugs in and instantly had air bag lights come on. We quickly though maybe this is just showing us the seat belts are not plugged in. This is where things became a little more frustrating. The seat belts and pre tensioners had been removed from the M4 seats and not supplied which meant removing the seats once again and retrofitting the original belt and tensioners to the M4 seats. Once these were back in we then had to recode the seats and remove the ecu error codes to ensure no further problems were lurking.
The rear spoiler was next on the jobs list, this alone took 4 hours to remove due to the amount of sickerflex sealant which had been applied when it was fitted and as we didnt want to just rip off and damage the original spoiler this was a lengthy process. We then moved onto the new M Performance led kick plates which were a straight forward upgrade but really made a difference in the looks and its quite surprising how much cooler a simple led light can be.
Next up was the Exhaust upgrade which was carried out by STG Performance who are based next door to ourselves. We supplied the M Carbon tips and Shane Gardner worked his magic transforming an already decent system to an epic one giving the car a much more aggressive look and something to match the current carbon theme which would be going on.
Once the exhaust was done it was time to fit the H&R springs dropping the car giving it a proper stance and reducing the height to a safe but more than acceptable low level. DangerousDave Shaw at the Unnamed garage too control of this and worked his crazy mad scientist skills to get the car dropped in pit stop time so we could get back on track with the jobs list still building up.
The car was then prepped ready for carbon to be fitted and the detailing booking it had in place in preparation for Fitted UK 2016 this weekend. After the car was cleansed and dried we fitted the carbon spoiler to the rear and allowed the sealant to set naturally oversight.
It was then time to get onto the detailing booking we had in place, this initially was booked for a full correction and two stage Gtechniq sealant package but with the workload already carried out our time scale was getting thinner and thinner. Even with working 15 hour days we could only manage to give the car an enhancement service but as close to a correction and time allowed. The car was closely inspection and various areas and panels were worked on again and again as we still needed to get the finish to a seriously high level. Once we were at a stage that would be acceptable the car was covered in two coats of EuroKracy hard wax to seal the paint, provide a protection and give it a sensational finish ready to hit Fitted Uk with force.
The final part of the build was to fit the carbon front diffuser and the carbon side sills but again unfortunately the front splitter just wasn't going to work due to the larger than standard front bumper and a custom piece is now on the cards, the side sills however fitted like a dream and after a couple of hours were lined up and set tightly to the bodywork. This however did leave us in a loss with the front bumper and after a quick call to Alex Kosarev at AKtints Ltd we arranged to have a real life carbon layed over the front bumper spats to finish the front end off and not leave any area untouched when it comes to that glossy black weave of carbon we all love.
Unfortunately one of the biggest parts of the build was delayed and wont be with us until the 4th of next month, this being some custom 3 piece split rims from BC Forged so in preparation on these arriving we have arranged to book the car back in for a full correction process, Gtechniq CSL black sealant package and to seal and fit the wheels at the same time.
This is not the last you will see of this car. We have already arranged to work on some seriously mental upgrades later in the year which will require weeks of design work and preparation to complete but will make this car even better than it currently is.