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From digest.v7.n850 Tue Dec 30 16:51:26 1997
From: "Mike and Julie" <>
Date: Tue, 30 Dec 1997 15:09:51 -0800
Subject: Re: <E36> Detuned 3-series/320i/323i/325i/328i

Miki Haraguchi <>wrote:

>>>>>OK, so BMW detuned the 323i and the M3. Why no mention of the fact
that they also detuned the 328i (from the Euro 193 bhp)? WHY DID THEY DO IT? Did they also detune the 540i (& 740i & 840i) and the 750i (& 850i)? Any other car manufacturer do this?<<<<<

The engine of the 328i in Europe has an aluminium alloy block whereas the one used in N. America has a cast iron block. I understand that this may have something to do with the sulphur content in North American gasoline which is damaging to alloy blocks, as some owners of V8 engines with alloy blocks found out to their displeasure. So, strictly speaking, the engines are not exactly the same, and it could be more than just a question of tuning.

That being said, I defy anybody to try and notice the difference that 3 hp will make in seat-of-the-pants performance. I have read a test report from the UK that rated the top speed of the Euro 328is at 147 mph with the 193 hp engine. Dinan claims their chip adds 9 hp to the stock N. American 328i and allows it to run to its 145 mph top speed. Car and Driver rate the 328i sedan (manual transmission) as 0-60 in 6.5 seconds, the British magazine Car gives 0-60 in 6.8 seconds for a 328is manual coupe. So it appears to be 6 of one, half dozen of the other.

As for the 323i engine, it is apparently not a detuned 325i engine. It is based on the 328i engine with a shorter stroke. The 325i engine was oversquare (bore greater than stroke, 84mm to 75mm), and the 328i engine is square (bore and stroke equal at 84 mm). Increasing stroke increases torque usually. Someone alluded to the fact that the 323i engine is a bored out 2 liter from the 320i. That' s false. The 323i engine has the same bore as the 328i (and in fact the same bore and stroke as the old 325i). The 323i has a bore and stroke of 84/75 mm whereas the 320i had a bore of 80 mm and a stroke of 66 mm, considerably less than the 323is' 75 mm stroke. I used to have a 320i and it certainly was rev-happy. I don't know what is the difference between the 325i and 323i engines since the bore/stroke are the same. I read that the 2.8 L in the 328i was a stroker version of the 325i engine, and now that they' ve reduced the stroke compared to the 328i (back to where it was on the 325i) they are saying it is not the same as the 325i's engine. Go figure...Must be something to do with marketing. Incidentally, go check out BMW Canada' s web site at WWW.BMW.CA. They accidentally show the 323is as having the exact same base price as the 328is! If that' s not enough, click on technical specifications and the specs appear ok but the picture you get is of a 1.8 L 4-cylinder!

Mike Gammon
' 96 328i " runs just fine with 190 hp"

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