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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i’ve been trying to find a replacement for my 2002 330i manual and ive ordered 2 so far one from autozone and one from world pac and both of them don’t have the same bolt pattern as my old one and won’t bolt up to the diff . the only places i’ve seen the one i need, they’re over 400. is there way to find a aftermarket one ??? i’m running out of options and might have to sell it i really don’t want to.
 

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The 330 uses a larger drive flange than the 325. Sounds like you may be getting 325 axles. I also see separate listings for manual vs automatic axles. Rockauto lists some options in the $60 range, but none are a brand I'd be too confident in longevity from.
 

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'03 325iT Mystic Blau
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The axles are pretty tricky for some reason. There's two different flange bolt circle diameters with two different patterns, and two different wheel speed sensor ring diameters as well. Some are straight tubes, some have a neck down section in the middle.
Your best bet is to look up the part number of the one that you need in RealOEM and use that to search, and yes some are only available new and run $400.

Have you considered a used one from a wrecking yard? They're pretty durable and if you can find one that the boots haven't failed on it should still be good. Piece of cake to regrease and replace the boots yourself, now you have a reman axle!
 

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+1 for 'good used' even though getting them unbolted in the junkyard's a PITA.

Honestly, if a new halfshaft costs less than $300-400, don't use it. There is too much metallurgy in a good one to be able to sell it for $60, ergo the $60 version doesn't HAVE the right metallurgy, and will fail.

fwiw,
t
 

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'03 325iT Mystic Blau
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+1 for 'good used' even though getting them unbolted in the junkyard's a PITA.

Honestly, if a new halfshaft costs less than $300-400, don't use it. There is too much metallurgy in a good one to be able to sell it for $60, ergo the $60 version doesn't HAVE the right metallurgy, and will fail.

fwiw,
t
The ones less than that aren't usually new, they're remans.
 

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2004 325i automagic
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GKN remans are quality if you can find the one you need from a reputable source. They will be a couple hundred at least, maybe more now with Covid pricing.

www.realoem.com

Use last 7 digits of your Vin to look up your chassis and get the right p/n.
 

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Had this same problem last year. It seems as though there are two 330i styles of rear axles you can get:
1. equal spacing bolt pattern on the diff flange. The flange that connects to the diff is bigger on this style. This is the one that you buy at the part stores or on RockAuto. Often called automatic axles.
2. The pairs of bolts spacing. The CVs have a thin flange on the diff side and use a different wheel speed sensor. Often called the manual axles. These axles are not supported by aftermarket companies and the cost of an OEM axle is ridiculous!

Your best bet is to find a junkyard and get an axle there. I think that there was a split in production at some point because I got my axle (paired bolt spacing) for my 2002 manual 5 speed 330i from an automatic 2001 330i, thus confirming that there isn't really an auto axle vs a manual axle (confusing, I know). Would also recommend staying away from cheap axles.
 
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