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      10-23-2020, 07:46 PM   #1
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Hello, Im a college student and recently purchased a 2012 328i with the n20. I came from an e90 n52, so Ive never done anything to increase performance in a car. So, my question is, what is the best, easiest, most budget friendly way to get my f30 pushing around 300hp? Im assuming thats an easy goal... Not sure if i want to get the BMS Stage 1 or the JB4, or if I want to go FBO or not. Ive also been considering BM3. I use 93 octane gas. Im open to all suggestions, but all said and done (including coils and plugs if needed) I'd like to have spent around $1000 but even less would be great! As always, all help is appreciated. Thanks!
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      10-23-2020, 07:56 PM   #2
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Downpipe and JB4. Cheapest and easiest way to make big power gains. With some E mixed in you'd probably be right above 300whp.
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      10-23-2020, 08:13 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by about94ninjas View Post
Downpipe and JB4. Cheapest and easiest way to make big power gains. With some E mixed in you'd probably be right above 300whp.
Bootmod3 would only cost me a little more, would it benefit me more than jb4? Ive heard bm3 is alot smoother but Ive also heard the people who have jb4 love it. I plan on getting a VRSF chargepipe which is $220 I believe, so that leaves me with around $800 for a tune and any other bolt ons I may need. But which tune is best and most beneficial?
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      10-23-2020, 08:20 PM   #4
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Don’t let people tell you stage 2 will net you 300whp .. because it won’t even a e30 mix might not get you there Fbo. You’ll make around 274-280 whp.. full e85 will get you to that 300 whp. I’m Fbo bigger turbo full e85 around 24 psi snd in around 320ishar goes on dyno Thursday to confirm and see where the cars at
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      10-23-2020, 08:31 PM   #5
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Interesting info. So looks like a tune with down pipes will be my best bet and Ill add a charge pipe and diverter valve for peace of mind. So at this point, what are good budget friendly downpipes? Also, JB4 or BM3? Will I need one step cold spark plugs?
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      10-23-2020, 08:36 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by j.f.leonard View Post
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Originally Posted by about94ninjas View Post
Downpipe and JB4. Cheapest and easiest way to make big power gains. With some E mixed in you'd probably be right above 300whp.
Bootmod3 would only cost me a little more, would it benefit me more than jb4? Ive heard bm3 is alot smoother but Ive also heard the people who have jb4 love it. I plan on getting a VRSF chargepipe which is $220 I believe, so that leaves me with around $800 for a tune and any other bolt ons I may need. But which tune is best and most beneficial?
Haven't used BM3, but if you can swing the extra I would.

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Originally Posted by Slowestn20 View Post
Don't let people tell you stage 2 will net you 300whp .. because it won't even a e30 mix might not get you there Fbo. You'll make around 274-280 whp.. full e85 will get you to that 300 whp. I'm Fbo bigger turbo full e85 around 24 psi snd in around 320ishar goes on dyno Thursday to confirm and see where the cars at
JB4 alone will get n20s into the 250s. Figured downpipe and some E was worth at least 50hp.
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      10-23-2020, 08:46 PM   #7
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Seems I'm wrong, but I thought the n20 f30 made 240hp stock? Either way, seems like 300hp might be hard to reach on my budget. So, what do you guys think of BM3 (stage 1 or stage 2) with the VSRF Sport downpipes, VRSF charge pipe, injen cold air intake and a muffler delete? Also, would I need upgraded spark plugs and coil packs? What about an upgraded diverter valve and boost pipe? If its not necessary I prefer not to do it.
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      10-24-2020, 08:26 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j.f.leonard View Post
Seems I'm wrong, but I thought the n20 f30 made 240hp stock? Either way, seems like 300hp might be hard to reach on my budget. So, what do you guys think of BM3 (stage 1 or stage 2) with the VSRF Sport downpipes, VRSF charge pipe, injen cold air intake and a muffler delete? Also, would I need upgraded spark plugs and coil packs? What about an upgraded diverter valve and boost pipe? If its not necessary I prefer not to do it.
Stage 2 is 280-290ish hp. Ethanol mix will get you to 300 for sure. Personally, I'd go with the downpipe and chargepipes first, then go intake and muffler delete if you have a budget. Stage 2 does need an intercooler, so do that before the intake and muffler as well. Charge pipes are plastic afaik and tend to go if you don't replace them.

Also, do as much work as you can. Intercooler/Intake and Charge pipe are relatively easy. I have issues getting my downpipe off so I'm having a shop do it. Also check your state emissions, catless will not pas in a lot of states so it can be a pain to replace it every inspection. High flow Cats should pass emissions but you're sacrificing a few HP.
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      10-24-2020, 09:09 AM   #9
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I went with an eBay test pipe ($159.99), a 340i full exhaust (from the cat back) $240, G-plus intercooler $221 and burger motor sports Jb+ $85 used ($199 new). I put down 290whp and 326wtq (dynojet correction) for a total of $706. It would be $820 with a new jb+.
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      10-24-2020, 10:38 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Kel918 View Post
I went with an eBay test pipe ($159.99), a 340i full exhaust (from the cat back) $240, G-plus intercooler $221 and burger motor sports Jb+ $85 used ($199 new). I put down 290whp and 326wtq (dynojet correction) for a total of $706. It would be $820 with a new jb+.
Oh wow, thanks for the info! Will definitely look into those. Are you using factory stage spark plugs or one step cold?
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      10-24-2020, 10:40 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steakpizza View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by j.f.leonard View Post
Seems I'm wrong, but I thought the n20 f30 made 240hp stock? Either way, seems like 300hp might be hard to reach on my budget. So, what do you guys think of BM3 (stage 1 or stage 2) with the VSRF Sport downpipes, VRSF charge pipe, injen cold air intake and a muffler delete? Also, would I need upgraded spark plugs and coil packs? What about an upgraded diverter valve and boost pipe? If its not necessary I prefer not to do it.
Stage 2 is 280-290ish hp. Ethanol mix will get you to 300 for sure. Personally, I'd go with the downpipe and chargepipes first, then go intake and muffler delete if you have a budget. Stage 2 does need an intercooler, so do that before the intake and muffler as well. Charge pipes are plastic afaik and tend to go if you don't replace them.

Also, do as much work as you can. Intercooler/Intake and Charge pipe are relatively easy. I have issues getting my downpipe off so I'm having a shop do it. Also check your state emissions, catless will not pas in a lot of states so it can be a pain to replace it every inspection. High flow Cats should pass emissions but you're sacrificing a few HP.
I live in NC so catless dp does not pass. I would probably go for a sport cat. Also, I do plan on doing alot of work myself but I figured the DP would be something a shop would have to do along with a diverter valve if I decided to get one of those. But thank you for the info, I guess Ill lower my standards!
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      10-24-2020, 10:43 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j.f.leonard View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steakpizza View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by j.f.leonard View Post
Seems I'm wrong, but I thought the n20 f30 made 240hp stock? Either way, seems like 300hp might be hard to reach on my budget. So, what do you guys think of BM3 (stage 1 or stage 2) with the VSRF Sport downpipes, VRSF charge pipe, injen cold air intake and a muffler delete? Also, would I need upgraded spark plugs and coil packs? What about an upgraded diverter valve and boost pipe? If its not necessary I prefer not to do it.
Stage 2 is 280-290ish hp. Ethanol mix will get you to 300 for sure. Personally, I'd go with the downpipe and chargepipes first, then go intake and muffler delete if you have a budget. Stage 2 does need an intercooler, so do that before the intake and muffler as well. Charge pipes are plastic afaik and tend to go if you don't replace them.

Also, do as much work as you can. Intercooler/Intake and Charge pipe are relatively easy. I have issues getting my downpipe off so I'm having a shop do it. Also check your state emissions, catless will not pas in a lot of states so it can be a pain to replace it every inspection. High flow Cats should pass emissions but you're sacrificing a few HP.
I live in NC so catless dp does not pass. I would probably go for a sport cat. Also, I do plan on doing alot of work myself but I figured the DP would be something a shop would have to do along with a diverter valve if I decided to get one of those. But thank you for the info, I guess Ill lower my standards!
Ya you'll be good! No worries though, I have a Stage 1 320 and while it's not a super car it's an absolute blast to drive and it holds its own on the road. Stage 2 320/328 really have some decent power in them, you won't be disappointed at all. Good luck!
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      10-24-2020, 10:51 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j.f.leonard View Post
Oh wow, thanks for the info! Will definitely look into those. Are you using factory stage spark plugs or one step cold?
I’m using the factory stock spark plugs. I just added the ftp turbo inlet pipe, the Dv+ diverter valve upgrade, and I just made my own custom air intake, and my car feels a lot faster + a ridiculous more mpg. I’m going to see if I can do a new dyno this week

Last edited by Kel918; 10-24-2020 at 12:12 PM..
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      10-24-2020, 10:54 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steakpizza View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by j.f.leonard View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steakpizza View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by j.f.leonard View Post
Seems I'm wrong, but I thought the n20 f30 made 240hp stock? Either way, seems like 300hp might be hard to reach on my budget. So, what do you guys think of BM3 (stage 1 or stage 2) with the VSRF Sport downpipes, VRSF charge pipe, injen cold air intake and a muffler delete? Also, would I need upgraded spark plugs and coil packs? What about an upgraded diverter valve and boost pipe? If its not necessary I prefer not to do it.
Stage 2 is 280-290ish hp. Ethanol mix will get you to 300 for sure. Personally, I'd go with the downpipe and chargepipes first, then go intake and muffler delete if you have a budget. Stage 2 does need an intercooler, so do that before the intake and muffler as well. Charge pipes are plastic afaik and tend to go if you don't replace them.

Also, do as much work as you can. Intercooler/Intake and Charge pipe are relatively easy. I have issues getting my downpipe off so I'm having a shop do it. Also check your state emissions, catless will not pas in a lot of states so it can be a pain to replace it every inspection. High flow Cats should pass emissions but you're sacrificing a few HP.
I live in NC so catless dp does not pass. I would probably go for a sport cat. Also, I do plan on doing alot of work myself but I figured the DP would be something a shop would have to do along with a diverter valve if I decided to get one of those. But thank you for the info, I guess Ill lower my standards!
Ya you'll be good! No worries though, I have a Stage 1 320 and while it's not a super car it's an absolute blast to drive and it holds its own on the road. Stage 2 320/328 really have some decent power in them, you won't be disappointed at all. Good luck!
Perfect, glad to hear that! Thanks!
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      10-24-2020, 10:55 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kel918 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by j.f.leonard View Post
Oh wow, thanks for the info! Will definitely look into those. Are you using factory stage spark plugs or one step cold?
I’m using the factory stock spark plugs. I just added the ftp turbo inlet pipe, the Dv+ diverted valve upgrade, and I just made my own custom air intake, and my car feels a lot faster + a ridiculous more mpg. I’m going to see if I can do a new dyno this week
Oh okay cool, would you say the upgraded DV is necessary? And I'm assuming the turbo inlet pipe is about as brittle as the charge pipe so its probably a high priority as well pushing more boost?
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      10-24-2020, 12:52 PM   #16
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So I think what Ive decided to do FOR NOW due to my budget and timing (I go back to school in January) is go with the BMS stage 1 ($379), VSRF charge pipe ($220), maybe a GFB diverter valve ($150) and a muffler delete ($100). This will run me about $700 without the DV and $850 with it, and I already have an intake. Does this sound like something that could possibly get me to the 270s until I can get a flash tune or JB4 with an intercooler and down pipe? Also, any other recommendations or things I should change? Thanks guys
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      10-24-2020, 01:18 PM   #17
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This is FBO from the youtuber who went from F30 -> e93 M3 -> M2 N55. He also lives in NC.

I think the only thing this guy is missing was the turbo to intercooler boost pipe, but this is with a catted downpipe. Might get a handful more with a catless downpipe, as well as a bigger turbo inlet (FTP instead of MST) and intake (afe power instead of MST).

I'll be dynoing my 6MT shortly but I'm waiting for a couple of parts to show up (charge pipe and turbo to IC pipe, arp rods), install, allow for the fuel tables to adjust (usually a gas tank), and will dyno to show FBO catless DP N20 6MT.

271whp/306wtq 8AT

Stage 2 93 - starts at 11:20


Last edited by sqwinny; 10-24-2020 at 01:24 PM..
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      10-24-2020, 02:23 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by sqwinny View Post
This is FBO from the youtuber who went from F30 -> e93 M3 -> M2 N55. He also lives in NC.

I think the only thing this guy is missing was the turbo to intercooler boost pipe, but this is with a catted downpipe. Might get a handful more with a catless downpipe, as well as a bigger turbo inlet (FTP instead of MST) and intake (afe power instead of MST).

I'll be dynoing my 6MT shortly but I'm waiting for a couple of parts to show up (charge pipe and turbo to IC pipe, arp rods), install, allow for the fuel tables to adjust (usually a gas tank), and will dyno to show FBO catless DP N20 6MT.

271whp/306wtq 8AT

Stage 2 93 - starts at 11:20

Yea i was going to point to this and say its going to prob cost more than $3000 if want to get a N20 to 300
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      10-24-2020, 02:52 PM   #19
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Interesting. Well, I do not want to spend over a grand right now so I think what I'm going to do is go the simple route with a tune and a charge pipe along with a muffler delete and I already have an intake. Should I go for the BMS Stage 1 ($379), JB4 ($515) or a flash tune like BM3 ($600)? I plan to eventually go with sport cat or maybe even catless downpipes and maybe a FMIC later down the road but like I said, Im a college student so I dont need to be spending all of my cash on car parts right now.

If any of you guys have a nice setup that cost you less than $1k I'm all ears to new recommendations or options! I guess a more reachable goal would be ~270hp?
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      10-24-2020, 03:18 PM   #20
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Just go with the jb+, the test pipe, 340i exhaust and the intercooler. Everything will set you back only $820 and your at 290whp/326wtq.If you get the ftp turbo inlet pipe $180 from ecs tuning that will put you at exactly $1,000. The charge pipe does nothing for horsepower.
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      10-24-2020, 03:25 PM   #21
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Just go with the jb+, the test pipe, 340i exhaust and the intercooler. Everything new will set you back only $820 and your at 290whp/326wtq.If you get the ftp turbo inlet pipe $180 from ecs tuning that will put you at exactly $1,000. The charge pipe does nothing for horsepower.
I know the charge pipe does nothing for horsepower and if anything its minimal, but everywhere I look it says to upgrade the charge pipe once you tune since its prone to cracking. And the jb+ just seems like a little UNDERkill... I believe the lowest Id go is the BMS stage 1 piggyback. As far as exhaust I plan to just do a muffler delete. Intercooler wise, I heard G plus wasnt very good and required modification to fit the charge pipe?
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      10-24-2020, 03:28 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by j.f.leonard View Post
I know the charge pipe does nothing for horsepower and if anything its minimal, but everywhere I look it says to upgrade the charge pipe once you tune since its prone to cracking. And the jb+ just seems like a little UNDERkill... I believe the lowest Id go is the BMS stage 1 piggyback. As far as exhaust I plan to just do a muffler delete. Intercooler wise, I heard G plus wasnt very good and required modification to fit the charge pipe?
fairly sure bm3 has been proven to be more powerful than jb4.

least when I was doing this research it wasn't even a close comparison for a b48.
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