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If you do the work... around $2000-2500k. $1500-2000 for parts and $500 for labor to machine bellhousing. Just saw a thread where some got quotes in the $4-6k range for someone else to do all the work.
 

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Thing is...you'll generally pay about 4grand more for a 6 speed car. But at least you can say it came with a manual. Finding a good clean car and not paying early 2000's prices for the E46 is no easy task
 

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Discussion Starter #5
...so I’m learning. I‘ve located a good, really clean car with ~70k, coupe but with SMG. Good service history and only 2 owners. No rod bearings, VANOS, subframe or SMG work done to date.
 

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I got mine converted at a shop turnkey for 3100 in Texas. Plus 500 for the bellhousing i sourced from Kaiv on m3forum


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I did the conversion just a few days ago. What a nightmare but it was a lot to do with the shop that did it. I did the coding, and a lot of the trim stuff in the interior. When you're in there it's good to replace your starter, trans mounts, Guibo and a couple of other things.
The great thing about the conversion is that you get a probably unmolested transmission that was shifted by a computer so that means good synchros etc. Also means you can do all new shifter linkage and maybe a short shift kit while they're doing the job. I did that. It's around $900 in parts - all brand new from BMW. Bellhousing machining is $500. And labor is around $1,000 at a shop that doesn't charge an arm and a leg. Shops may want like 20 hours of labor at $150 an hour. Feel free to shoot questions. If I had a great great shop to work with I'd definitely buy a SMG over standard manual. It's not rocket science but you gotta know what you're doing.
 

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I did the conversion just a few days ago. What a nightmare but it was a lot to do with the shop that did it. I did the coding, and a lot of the trim stuff in the interior. When you're in there it's good to replace your starter, trans mounts, Guibo and a couple of other things.
The great thing about the conversion is that you get a probably unmolested transmission that was shifted by a computer so that means good synchros etc. Also means you can do all new shifter linkage and maybe a short shift kit while they're doing the job. I did that. It's around $900 in parts - all brand new from BMW. Bellhousing machining is $500. And labor is around $1,000 at a shop that doesn't charge an arm and a leg. Shops may want like 20 hours of labor at $150 an hour. Feel free to shoot questions. If I had a great great shop to work with I'd definitely buy a SMG over standard manual. It's not rocket science but you gotta know what you're doing.
Second that. Especially if youre looking at cars with multiple owners and over 100k miles (pretty much 90% of all remaining 46Ms), starting with an SMG and converting it will guarantee your synchros are in best shape possible


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It's not a big deal. I got a full parts list, all you gotta do is paste and order. You gotta find a reputable shop to do the work. You gotta make a deal on the details: timeline, parts to be replaced, etc. There's some real janky BMW techs you wouldn't believe it. The biggest hurdle in the entire swap is, of course, the human stuff. The tech who's gonna work on the car. The shop. That kind of stuff.


Second that. Especially if youre looking at cars with multiple owners and over 100k miles (pretty much 90% of all remaining 46Ms), starting with an SMG and converting it will guarantee your synchros are in best shape possible


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My car is now at 124k. I'm the 4th owner I think. Car was bought brand new with cash, a lot of service records. My trans is like new with this new shifter linkage I put in with the conversion. Bolt action shifting. No play.
 
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