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I’ve seen that the e46’s can come with an aerodynamics package, and i’ve heard you can mount them to one that doesn’t come with the package. But is there any difference in handling, acceleration (which i doubt there is any), or anything like how the car feels? I don’t want to get this kit and snap it on (even if i can) just because of claims, I just want to know if it would be worth it
 

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It's all for looks, we don't drive f1 cars :) But if you think the package will look good on your car then go for it.
 

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I made my own wing years ago and the guys here laughed at me. It was great and I felt it. Get a 2' x 4' piece of plywood and steam it to bend up the edges...after it dries, cut to the size you like, round the edges, prime, paint...mount to trunk with similar pieces of plywood and gorilla glue (clamp overnight).

Everyone notices it and comments. The ladies are, like, did you make a wing out of plywood? I'm, "why yes, my dear, I did." Makes a great whistling sound too...frightens the deer.
 

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Spend the money on new rear suspension bushings & mounts and on refreshing the suspension in general. THAT will make a noticeable difference in handling and feel.
 

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No

You don't go fast enough.
Agreed but just to expand a little.

Broadly, there are two goals of aero: reducing drag (coefficient) and downforce. Downforce is useless here because it’s not a track car. And you sacrifice drag for downforce. So the game with street cars is reducing drag. This benefits hp (speed) and fuel efficiency.

the e46 has a coefficient of .3-.31. The e30 was better .27, which is really good.The best coefficient on a production car is like .18. Ideally an aero kit could make about a 20% improvement (realistically prolly like 5%-10%). Today’s 3-series has like a .24.

If your aero improved drag by 20%, you’d only see a 5% benefit in hp and fuel economy driving at 70 mph all time. Much less if stop and go. So yeah won’t feel that. Now if you add aero AND lighten the car, you might feel that if you drive a lot on the highway.
 

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2003 M3 6MT Slicktop
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BMW already spends a good deal of time making body aerodynamic. depending on trim package you have (and are moving to) varies the answer somewhat. but nah you won’t make it accelerate faster, but the downforce in front can aid in turn-in response and rear downforce help reduce lift at high speeds. so high speed stability can be improved.
If you’re buying it for these possible felt improvements you’ll likely be disappointed.

majority of package trim is for styling although functional..it’s just not overly functional.
their trunk wings are actually pretty well designed. but rarely used.
 

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If memory serves, BMW used to offer an aero package for some cars, which retails around $2k and includes a front lip spoiler, rear diffuser, and gurney flap. (Not sure if this is still available.)

The front lip and gurney (from plane aero) are supposed to aid in downforce but you’ll take a penalty in drag. In other words if you want the best in a straight line, you don’t want those. (On another car I have, the gurney will drop your fuel efficiency noticeably by a couple mpg.) The diffuser probably doesn’t have a penalty and may even help your drag but maybe not to the degree you hope for, given the cost.
 

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BMW used to offer an aero package for some cars, and includes a front lip spoiler, rear diffuser, and gurney flap.
The front lip and gurney (from plane aero) are supposed to aid in downforce..
fun fact the “gurney flap” was invented by my late old boss Dan Gurney for cars.
 

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Arguably, you might reduce drag enough that you see an improvement in fuel mileage, but you are not legally capable of going fast enough to feel the improved downforce.
 

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fun fact the “gurney flap” was invented by my late old boss Dan Gurney for cars.
Wow, his was such a great story that I wish I had met him. I was sorry to hear he passed a couple of years ago.

Beside the flap, his many racing wins, the community owes him the tradition of spraying champagne at a podium win. He also won the first Cannonball Run (inspiring the Burt Reynolds movie) I think.
 

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The post is straying, but I like it. Never met Dan but met Fangio Jr. & P.J. while a guest of Jaguar @ Lime Rock.
I also corner worked under the footbridge (practice) for the race. Watching the likes of JP Jr. Hit a piece of blacktop the size of a pack of cigarettes with his Miller liveried Porsche lap after lap was encouragement for me as a young racer.
Then during raceday, it drizzled most of the race. There was a tenuous dry line only the width of a car. They were running the then new chicane for the uphill. Damned if those Toyota's didn't crack off lap times in the 48-50 second range. Holy crap. Really discouraging for me and my lap times at the time.

Gurney Flap, sure. BUT did you know the tradition of spraying Champagne from the podium was started by Dan?

I remember an in-depth review of the first Audi 200 (5000 in US guise) by Road & Track. There was an add on interview with Piech (?) about the controversial aero shape of the new car.
He went into detail of Cd and how form needs to follow function. He also stated that one of the best Cd in nature was that of a penguin. Somewhere in the 1.1-1.5 range. Albeit such a shape would largely be untenable for that of an automobile.
 

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2005, BMW, 330CIConvertible, 2009 e93 335i
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No

You don't go fast enough.
Actually it absolutely does make a difference on the Autobahn at full speed. I drove an MR2 full blast on the Autobahn and it had pop up headlights... when you turned off the lights the car could go top max speed, and the moment you turned the lights pop up, the car immediately slowed down by 5 mph. It was very educational. Eventually, you WILL reach a speed where any addition to your car will affect your speed and handling. If the aero kit is poorly designed, then it will impact your speed and agility negatively. If well designed, then you will benefit.
 

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Did you work at AAR? The Toyota 88C GTP was insane.
yep! but I was just a kid part-timer.
i forget u lived in Socal back them.
Gurney Flap, sure. BUT did you know the tradition of spraying Champagne from the podium was started by Dan?
I didn’t know til years later.
 
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