Project E46 M3: Part 13 – Lightweight clutch and flywheel, and more!


With all of the bolts removed, and the driveshaft disconnected (as well as a little prying), the transmission should be able to be pulled out. Exposed here is our original clutch, with about 60k original miles. Let’s inspect it.

Actually, the clutch looks pretty good. It hadn’t been slipping whatsoever. You can see some marks on the pressure plate but it’s nothing out of the ordinary, and still felt smooth to the touch. It’s too bad since it’s still going in the trash. But the new Clutch Masters setup is supposed to outlast the factory unit!

The factory clutch and flywheel setup weighed in at 37.5 lb, or 11.5 lb heavier than our new Clutch Master clutch and flywheel combo.

The stock dual mass flywheel weighed in at 24.4 lb by itself. That said, we can see where the weight loss comes from, when there’s a 12.6 lb weight loss (more than half!) from the flywheel alone. There must be a slight weight gain with the new clutch disc, especially considering the old one has had some weight worn out through its 14-year life span thus far.

With the stock flywheel off, the end of the crankshaft is now exposed, which also means the rear main seal. These tend to go bad around the 100k mark and if you’re already in there it’s a good idea to put in a new one. We got ours from Bavarian Autosport, which is our supplier of OE parts for this BMW project.

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