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I really hope this hasn't been brought up too many times, but this is my first post, so forgive.

I've got an 01 325xi with over 100k miles on it, and its looking like the clutch needs to be replaced. As willing as I am to do the maint myself, I just don't have the time, experience, and have another project taking up all four of my jackstands right now.

So here's my question, Is it worth using the stock kit? If I stay stock, and just drop it off at the shop, how much should the job cost me total? I was quoted something around 1.2k - 2k for the job, and although I trust the shop, it seems a bit steep considering I asked them not to include the cost of the clutch + p.plate.

If stock replacements are not the way to go, which kit should I be looking at. I don't have too much to spend on the xi unfortunately, and I just want a stage 1 kit that allows some sportier driving (and less Rmass) than stock. In all honestly, I would probably be fine with the stock kit and a CDV swap (I do my hoonin' in my 74' 2002).

So it comes down to this. For daily driving, with a bit of a heavier foot, what combo is the most economical and would serve me the best? I'm pretty set on swapping out the CDV regardless of choice. Also, any shops in say a 2 hour drive that do solid work, and won't jerk me around? How much should this job cost. I think the estimate I got was a worst case, but it didn't include the flywheel machining.
 

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I think that $1000 - $1200 sounds pretty high. Especially if it doesn't include the clutch parts or flywheel machining. I received a quote for $600 labor, but this quote was also from somebody that I knew and it included replacing rear main seal, input shaft seal, pilot bearing, clutch arm, etc. I think that this price is pretty fair, but I am going to end up doing it myself in the next week or two.

UUC has a %15 plus free shipping deal going on right now. If you are interested in picking up an aftermarket clutch/flywheel this would probably be the most cost effective for parts at this moment.

I am not sure how much more labor is involved for an xi, but I can't imagine that it is so much more that it would cost $1200 in labor. If it took a professional mechanic 12 hours to instal a clutch he might want to look into another profession. :D Granted that labor estimates are always calculated on total estimated job time and also billed as such, but I still can't imagine that the time in the books would be 12 hours.
 

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Be careful on how shops quote labor. Many shops add up labor operations, when they should be included.

For example if you look the labor up for a clutch replacement, the labor includes removing the transmission. If you were to add the replacement of the rear main seal on the engine, the labor includes removal of the complete transmission, some shops double dip and this is how they make A LOT of money. Replaceing the main seal should include full removal of trans, clutch and flywheel, so they should not even charge for the clutch change as it is fully included in the labor time for the rear main seal change.

A few good shops in the DC area that come to mind areL

Curry's Automotive, Auto Scandia & Fairfax Auto Service. Not sure if any of them will provide quotes over the phone, but for a clutch job they should??

Sorry I do not have any options on your side of the river for now.
 

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Is the car having difficulty engaging 1st and reverse? When driving in 4th gear and you floor the car, does it slip meaning the rpm rises much faster than the speed? If not, then you still have time to find a good shop.
 

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Look up Thunderbird Automotive...its located in Rockville. Really good owner and reliable. He doesnt even charge by the hour. He charges flat rates for the job in general. Really cheap usually. Did a lot of work for me in the past a helluva lot cheaper than it would have been at other shops.
 
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